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Daylight Saving Origins – timeline

Ancient civilizations were known to practice a similar process of timekeeping to match seasonal shifts in daylight.

Daylight Saving Origins – timeline

  • In 1784, Americas’ Benjamin Franklin hoped the idea would maximize the value of candles. It was included in a list of other reforms like blasting cannons and ringing church bells at dawn to rouse people from their beds.
  • In 1895 New Zealander George Vernon Hudson proposed the two-hour daylight saving shift to the Wellington Philosophical Society after noticing that his shift-work job gave him leisure time to collect insects.
  • In 1905 English builder William Willet pondered the idea during a pre-breakfast ride, dismayed with sleeping through summer daylight hours. An avid golfer he also disliked cutting short his round at dusk!
  •  On April 30, 1916, the Germans and the Austro-Hungarian Empire to save valuable energy for the war effort first officially use DST. The allied forces followed suit a month later.
  • Just over two decades later, war is again the impetus for DST. It was reinstituted by many of the involved countries in World War II as a means of energy conservation – the US even called it ‘War Time.’
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