December 2, 1942: First Nuclear Chain Reaction On this day in 1942, Italian Nobel Prize winning physicist Enrico Fermi created the first self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction in his laboratory at the University of Chicago.
British physicist William Thomson, Lord Kelvin (1824-1907), proposer of the absolute (Kelvin) temperature scale, is associated with establishing the second law of thermodynamics. Educated at Glasgow and Cambridge, he published important papers on the conservation and dissipation of energy, made contributions to the field of fluid mechanics and directed work on the first successful trans-Atlantic cable telegraph in 1866, which brought him considerable wealth. This photo was taken around 1880.
On orders from President Woodrow Wilson, Major General John J. Pershing led an expeditionary force of 4,800 men into Mexico to capture or kill Pancho Villa in retaliation for Villa's attack on Columbus, NM. The "Punitive Expedition" was a complete failure having never caught sight of the revolutionary leader. In the meantime, W.W.I. intervened and the war in Europe dominated the headlines. Pershing was recalled, sent to Europe and people forgot about the second US invasion of Mexico.