Production begins at the first offshore sulphur mine. Grand Isle mine was built off the Louisiana coast, US, by Freeport Sulphur.

Stanley Miller was born. In 1953, he demonstrated how amino acids and other simple organic compounds could be synthesised under plausible primitive Earth conditions. He passed an electric spark through a sealed glass apparatus containing a mixture of methane, ammonia, hydrogen, and water vapour, resulting in the synthesis of some of the amino acids found in proteins.

Archer Martin was born in London. He and Richard Synge developed partition chromatography, for which they received the Nobel prize in chemistry in 1952. More recently, with Anthony James, he developed gas-liquid chromatography.

Einstein’s annus mirabilis in 1905 started in March when he created the quantum theory of light, the idea that light exists as tiny packets, which he called photons. This contradicted 100 years of experimental evidence that demonstrated that light was a continuous wave.

Joseph-Nic?phore Ni?pce was born in France. He produced the first successful photograph in 1826 using a pewter plate coated with an asphalt, bitumen of Judea, which hardens when exposed to light. The process, which he called heliography, was eclipsed by Daguerre’s daguerreotype.