Today in History: Summer Solstice

| June 21, 2017


The sun hangs at meridian in a cloudless lake of sky
And there is shimmering stillness everywhere;
The hushed secrecy of leaves beneath this summer noon,
The shining silence of white steeples in blue air.

Nothing moves except a monster butterfly that floats
Above the clumps of white and purple phlox,
And one small humming-bird that darts and whirs
His wings among the tall pagodas of red hollyhocks.

The black cat drowses in green aromatic gloom of sage;
Here is the poised stillness of all natural things;
A spider waits in geometric iridescence of his web,
While no leaf stirs and no bird even briefly sings.

— Frederick Ebright, Summer Solstice

June 21st 2017 marks the onset of summer, at the time of the longest day. June solstice is the Summer Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere and the Winter Solstice in the Southern Hemisphere, and the exact timing depends on when the sun reaches its northernmost point from the equator. Farmer’s Almanac predicts 12:24am. Higher in the sky throughput the day, the sun’s rays strike Earth at a more direct angle, and typically the sun is seen the longest, even if it is not the hottest day of the year.

The following articles are selected from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.


  • Check out these children’s books about summer and/or the solstice.
  • Stay tuned for July’s Staff Picks, Unconventional Beach Reads.
  • Happy Summer!


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