Sir Sandford Fleming was a Scottish Canadian Inventor who was born in Scotland and immigrated to Canada when he was 18, where he’d eventually settle in Nova Scotia.

Fleming is credited for a great many things, though it was on this day in 1879, that he proposed the idea of Standard Time Zones based on a single universal world time, at a meeting of the Royal Canadian Institute.

Following an incident in which he missed his train because of a typo (an PM instead of an AM), Fleming suggested a single 24-hour clock for the entire world, with the 24-hour divisions linked to the Greenich Meridian. Fleming called this “Cosmic Time” and while it was not universally received at his first suggestion, by 1929 all major countries accepted the standard time zones as we know them today.

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