15 Historical Events That You Will Not Believe Happened At The Same Time. Nope. Nope. Nope.

History often presents us with surprising juxtapositions of events that occurred simultaneously but seem worlds apart. We saw something on TikTok which claimed that wooly mammoths roamed the earth during the period of time that the Egyptian pyramids were built. Was that true? What other historical facts occurred at the same time that seem surprising? We took a look and found 15 instances that we really enjoyed learning about.

Those Mammoths & The Pyramids (a really long time ago)

wooly mammoth and pyramids.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

When you research wooly mammoths, their time on earth is usually expressed as about 700,000 years ago to about 4,000 years ago. This translates to approximately 698,000 BC to 2000 BC.

The Egyptian Great Pyramids were built from roughly 2600 to 2490 BC, so it appears that there is overlap. Of course, the pyramids were in Egypt, and the mammoths were roaming tundra habitats of Asia, North America and Europe for the bulk of their time, but towards the end it is believed they were isolated on an island off of Siberia, which aided in their extinction. This overlap of prehistoric wildlife and ancient human civilization challenges our perceptions of historical timelines and the coexistence of different eras.

the French Release of Star Wars & The Last Guillotine Execution (1977)

star wars and guillotine.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

In 1977, the same year that George Lucas’s iconic film Star Wars was released, France conducted its last execution by guillotine. Hamida Djandoubi, a Tunisian immigrant convicted of murder, was executed on September 10, 1977. This marked the end of a method of execution that had been in use since the French Revolution, highlighting a stark contrast between the old and the new. The next day at the Deauville Film Festival, Star Wars: Episode IV—A New Hope had been celebrating its French premiere.

The Founding of McDonald’s and the Arrival of Prisoners at Auschwitz (1940)

McDonald's and Auschwitz.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

In May 1940, two seemingly unrelated events occurred within days of each other. On May 15, Richard and Maurice McDonald opened the first McDonald’s restaurant in San Bernardino, California. Just five days later, the first prisoners arrived at Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland. These events underscore the simultaneous existence of burgeoning American consumer culture and the horrors of the Holocaust.

The Invention of the Fax Machine and the Oregon Trail Migration (1843)

Telegraph and Oregon Migration.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Public Domain.

In 1843, Alexander Bain received a patent for the “Electric Printing Telegraph,” the precursor to the modern fax machine. That same year, approximately 1,000 emigrants embarked on the Great Migration along the Oregon Trail. This juxtaposition of technological advancement and pioneer migration highlights the diverse paths of progress and exploration during the 19th century.

The Eiffel Tower and Van Gogh’s Starry Night (1889)

Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

The year 1889 saw the inauguration of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, built for the World’s Fair, and the creation of Vincent van Gogh’s masterpiece, The Starry Night. Both the tower and the painting have become iconic symbols of their respective fields—architecture and art—demonstrating the flourishing of creativity and innovation during this period.

The Qing Dynasty Collapse and the Titanic Disaster (1912)

Qing DYnasty and Titanic.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

In 1912, two significant events took place: the collapse of China’s Qing Dynasty and the sinking of the RMS Titanic. The Qing Dynasty, which had ruled China for over two centuries, fell, marking the end of imperial rule and the beginning of the Republic of China. Meanwhile, the Titanic, deemed unsinkable, met its tragic fate on its maiden voyage. These events symbolize monumental shifts in political and social landscapes.

Oxford University and the Aztec Empire (circa 1428)

Oxford and Aztecs.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

By the time the Aztec Empire was founded in 1428, Oxford University had already celebrated its 200th anniversary. Established in the 12th century, Oxford is one of the oldest universities in the world, while the Aztec Empire, known for its rich culture and advanced society, was just beginning to rise in Central America. (According to the university itself, There is no clear date of foundation, but teaching existed at Oxford in some form in 1096). This highlights the long-standing tradition of education in Europe compared to the relatively recent emergence of the Aztec civilization.

The Moon Landing and Swiss Women’s Right to Vote (1969-1971)

Moon landing and voting.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

In 1969, NASA successfully landed the first humans on the moon with the Apollo 11 mission. Just two years later, in 1971, women in Switzerland were granted the right to vote in federal elections. These events illustrate the rapid advancements in space exploration juxtaposed with the slower progress in gender equality in certain parts of the world.

The Death of Pablo Picasso and the Release of Dark Side of the Moon (1973)

Picasso and Pink Floyd.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

Pablo Picasso, one of the most influential artists of the 20th century, died in 1973, the same year Pink Floyd released their seminal album The Dark Side of the Moon. This coincidence underscores the transition from an era dominated by visual art to one where music and other forms of media began to take center stage.

The London Underground & The Last Public Hanging in the UK (1863 -1868)

Underground and hanging.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

The last public hanging in the UK took place on May 26, 1868, when Fenian Michael Barrett was executed outside Newgate Prison in London. At the same time, the London Underground, the world’s first underground railway, had been operational for five years. This juxtaposition of a modern transportation system and an archaic form of punishment highlights the contrasts within Victorian society.

The Founding of Nintendo and Jack the Ripper (1888 -1889)

Nintendo and jack the ripper.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

Nintendo, now a global video game giant, was founded in 1889 as a playing card company in Japan. The year prior, Jack the Ripper was terrorizing the streets of London with his infamous murders. It is possible that his rampage extended into 1889. This overlap of a nascent entertainment company and a notorious criminal case illustrates the diverse historical narratives that can coexist.

The Ottoman Empire and the Chicago Cubs (1908)

Ottoman empire and chicago cubs.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

In 1908, the Chicago Cubs won the World Series, for the second year in a row, a feat they would not repeat until 2016. At that time, the Ottoman Empire was still in existence, only to be dissolved after World War I. This highlights the longevity of certain historical entities and the unexpected connections between sports history and global political changes.

The Colosseum and the New Testament (circa 80 AD)

colosseum and New testament.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

The Colosseum in Rome was completed around 80 AD, the same period during which the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles were being written. These events reflect the simultaneous development of monumental architecture and foundational religious texts, both of which have had lasting impacts on Western civilization.

The Birth of Anne Frank and Martin Luther King Jr. (1929)

anne frank and MLK.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

Anne Frank, the Jewish diarist who became a symbol of the Holocaust, and Martin Luther King Jr., the civil rights leader, were both born in 1929. Their lives, though tragically cut short, left profound legacies in the fight against oppression and for human rights. This coincidence underscores the interconnectedness of global struggles for justice.

The Birth of Marilyn Monroe and Queen Elizabeth II (1926)

Marilyn Monroe and Queen Elizabeth II.
Collage credit Dédé Wilson via Shutterstock.

Marilyn Monroe and Queen Elizabeth II, both born in 1926, present a fascinating juxtaposition. Monroe, born on June 1, became a Hollywood icon and sex symbol, known for her glamour and tragic life. In contrast, Queen Elizabeth II, born on April 21, ascended to the British throne and symbolized stability and tradition for decades. Their shared birth year highlights the diverse paths lives can take, even when starting at the same point in history.

These examples of simultaneous historical events challenge our perceptions of time and history, revealing the complex tapestry of human experience.

Anne Boleyn: A Cautionary Tale For Modern Times?

Anne Boleyn Feature Image
Image by The Queen Zone

May 19 is the 488th anniversary of the execution of Anne Boleyn, second wife of Henry VIII of England, who lost her head because her husband needed a son and Anne wasn’t making that happen in a timely fashion. Her story is remarkable and the influence of her relationship with the King on world history has long tentacles that reach into today.

READ: Anne Boleyn: A Cautionary Tale For Modern Times?

7 Deadly Insects That Have Invaded The United States & 10 Predators Who May Just Save Us

assassin bugs.
Image credit RAMLAN BIN ABDUL JALIL via Shutterstock.

In recent years, the United States has seen a surge in the arrival of deadly insects from around the world, many of which were previously unknown to the region. These invasive species have brought with them new threats to human health, agriculture, and ecosystems. From venomous stings to painful bites, these insects can cause severe reactions, allergic responses, and even death. Here are 7 examples of deadly insects that have invaded the United States, posing significant risks to both humans and the environment.

READ: 7 Deadly Insects That Have Invaded The United States & 10 Predators Who May Just Save Us

Join Us

The Queen Zone Join Us Feature Image
Image Credit The Queen Zone

Join us on this empowering journey as we explore, celebrate, and elevate “her story.” The Queen Zone is not just a platform; it’s a community where women from all walks of life can come together, share their experiences, and inspire one another. Welcome to a space where the female experience takes center stage. Sign up for our newsletter so you don’t miss a thing, Queen!


  • Dede Wilson

    Dédé Wilson is a journalist with over 17 cookbooks to her name and is the co-founder and managing partner of the digital media partnership Shift Works Partners LLC, currently publishing through two online media brands, FODMAP Everyday® and The Queen Zone.

    View all posts

Similar Posts