Boston Molasses SpillJan. 15, 1919: A bizarre industrial accident claims 21 lives in Boston. Temperatures had abruptly risen from near zero to the mid-forties, possibly causing an immense molasses tank to rupture and explode. Two and a half million gallons of molasses pour through the city streets in a sickly-sweet, 25-foot high wall, smothering people and horses and destroying buildings (at right).

Jan. 15, 1975: In his first State of the Union Address, U.S. President Gerald R. Ford outlines an ambitious plan to reduce foreign oil imports. His proposals include breaks for the coal and nuclear industries, higher energy taxes, improvements in energy conservation, and reductions in energy demand.

Jan. 15, 2004: More than three years after losing the most contentious Presidential election in U.S. history, Al Gore blasts President George W. Bush as a "moral coward" who is "wholly owned by the coal, oil, utility and mining industries."

Photo: Boston Public Library/Flickr

This feature is compiled by Peter Dykstra, an MNN contributor and publisher of Environmental Health News and The Daily Climate.

January 15
Molasses overruns Boston and President Ford outlines a plan to reduce oil imports.