Is 2016 the Worst Year in History?Breaking News
tags: terrorism, serial killers, Nice France
David Baker, author of Crash Course Big History, suggested circa 72,000 years ago:
There are plenty of “bad years” in the history of the universe, but the worst year in human history would probably be the year humans came closest to extinction (thus far). One year, around 72,000 B.C., there was a volcanic super-eruption on the island of Sumatra in present-day Indonesia. The explosion was massive. Where there was once a mountain, there is now a lake. It exploded with the force of 1.5 million Hiroshima-size bombs. Rock and magma were hurled continental distances. A layer of volcanic ash approximately 15 centimeters (about six inches) thick settled over Asia with traces as far as our homeland in East Africa. The skies darkened and global temperatures fell.
The “long night” descended, and something analogous to a nuclear winter began that year and lasted for many years afterward. Food sources died off, and DNA testing indicates that the human population was reduced to between 3,000 and 10,000 people. From this tiny group of survivors, no bigger than a small town, all 7 billion people on Earth today are descended, making us one of the most numerous but genetically close species in nature.
comments powered by Disqus
- Sen. Hawley: Public Schools Must Make Kids Love America and the Founding
- Texas Teachers: Law Will Put Entire Generation in the Dark
- The Hiawatha Asylum: The Threat Behind Indian Boarding Schools
- Iraq Reclaims 17,000 Looted Artifacts, Its Biggest-Ever Repatriation
- How to Make Jim Jordan Talk about January 6? Ask Jefferson Davis
- Are the Democrats About to Repeat Mistakes that Led to Jim Crow?
- The Customer is Always Insufferable? The History of Today's Beleaguered Service Worker
- Historian Rebecca Hall's New Graphic Novel Highlights Women's Role in Slave Revolts
- New Book of Family History Recreates the Anti-Nazi Resistance in Germany
- Gloria Ratti: Historian of the Boston Marathon Who Made History Herself