NATIONAL TWIN DAY
On December 18th, National Twin Day celebrates all the siblings who enjoy the unique connection because they share a birthday.
Whether fraternal or identical, twins share everything right from the beginning. While their personalities may be different, they often know what the other is going to say before the words are spoken. Distance isn’t an issue either. Twins manage to stay connected across the country or around the globe.
Of course, mythology teaches us about twins from the very beginning, as does the Bible. From the rivalry of Esau and Jacob to Aphrodite’s twin sons Phobos and Deimos as well as the mortal and immortal twins of the constellation, Gemini, we explore a host of human conditions.
Through the years, we’ve been fascinated by twins, too. Literature embraced the twin duplicity with enthusiasm. Take Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, for example, and the confusion that ensues with Sebastian and Viola. Even modern-day sitcoms keep us in tears when twins are portrayed. Phoebe Buffay of the sitcom Friends and, more recently, Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory humorously depicted their twin lives.
But real-life twins intrigue us, too. When twins move into the White House, we are sure to pay attention, as was the case with Barbara and Jenna Bush in 2001. Of course, when they play magical characters like James and Oliver Phelps did in the Harry Potter series, we feel like they’re family. Their roles as Fred and George Weasley kept us coming back for more.
Some twins have the same interests. For example, Mark and Scott Kelly both became astronauts and have contributed not only to space exploration but also to scientific study. Twins Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson and Monique Lamoureux’s love of hockey brought them together on the U.S. Olympic Hockey Team.
Twins share so much more than DNA. Many of them don’t even look alike. One thing is for sure, they share National Twin Day.
HOW TO OBSERVE NATIONAL TWIN DAY
Give a shout-out to your favorite twins. Whether they are friends, family, or famous ones, let them know you’re thinking of them. If you’re a twin, tell your best twin memory. Share photos. Host a twin party. Invite all the twins you know and celebrate!. Use #NationalTwinDay to share on social media.
Educators, visit the National Day Calendar Classroom for projects designed for observances throughout the year, including National Twin Day.
NATIONAL TWIN DAY HISTORY
In 2019, National Day Calendar® proclaimed National Twin Day to celebrate all things twins and to be observed on December 18th, annually.
Twins Days Weekend – Twins converge on Twinsburg, OH to celebrate being twins during the first full weekend in August.
Q. What’s the difference between identical and fraternal twins?
A. Identical twins develop from a single fertilized egg while fraternal twins develop from two separate fertilized eggs.
Q. How many sets of twins are born each year?
A. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) twins comprise approximately 3.4% of the population.
Q. Is it possible for twins to have different birthdays?
A. Yes. The most common reason for twins having different birthdays is due to one twin being born before midnight and the other after midnight. However, sometimes twins are born days, weeks, or months apart. One reason for this may be due to multiple births being high risk and while one twin is delivered early, the other remains in the womb for the rest of the gestation or as long as possible for development.
December 18th Celebrated (And Not So Celebrated) History
The U.S. Secretary of State William Seward proclaims the adoption of the 13th Amendment prohibiting slavery. The amendment was ratified by the states on December 6, 1865.
Congress passes the 18th Amendment and sends it to the states for ratification. The era of the “Noble Experiment” of Prohibition would soon begin.
Project SCORE (Signal Communication by Orbiting Relay Equipment) launched from Cape Canaveral. It was the world’s first communications satellite. Build by the U.S. Army Signal Research and Development Laboratory, the satellite contained a message from President Dwight Eisenhower that said, “This is the President of the United States speaking. Through the marvels of scientific advance, my voice is coming to you from a satellite traveling in outer space. My message is a simple one: Through this unique means I convey to you and all mankind, America’s wish for peace on Earth and goodwill toward men everywhere.”
The Pink Panther starring David Niven, Peter Sellers, and Robert Wagner premieres in Italy. Directed by Blake Edwards, the comedy follows the misadventures of the inept Inspector Clouseau as he tries to catch a jewel thief.
CBS airs the animated adaption of Dr. Suess’s How the Grinch Stole Chrismas for the first time.
December 18th Celebrated (And Not So Celebrated) Birthdays
Walter D. Teague – 1883
Considered the “Dean of Industrial Design,” Teague’s pioneering influence helped establish the industrial design profession. He made his first forays into industrial design with Eastman Kodak, designing several cameras. From there, many more corporate clients followed including Boeing, Maxwell House, UPS, DuPont, and NASA.
Ty Cobb – 1886
The center fielder played 24 seasons in professional baseball, most of those years with the Detroit Tigers. Known for being an all-around baseball player, he could hit, run and field. He earned 11 batting titles during his career and held numerous records at his retirement.
Yvonne Cormeau – 1909
As an agent with the Special Operations Executives, Cormeau parachuted into German-occupied France to supply wireless communications back to London. She was almost arrested but managed to convince the Germans that her wireless was an x-ray machine. During her World War II service, she successfully transmitted more than 400 messages.
Benjamin O. Davis – 1912
During World War II, Davis organized and commanded the Tuskegee Airmen. In 1950, he became the first African American promoted to the rank of general in the United States Air Force. He was promoted to full general in 1998.
Jacques Pépin – 1935
The award-winning chef has been honored in his native France and by his adopted United States for his many contributions to the culinary world.
Steven Spielberg – 1946
The director has earned both critical and popular acclaim throughout his career. From E.T and the Indiana Jones series to historical dramas like Lincoln and Amistad, Spielberg never seems to disappoint the audience.