Fun Facts About Doors

Video highlights from Going Deep With David Rees

Did you know there are doors that take 45 minutes to open or close? Learn even more about doors and How to Open Them on Going Deep With David Rees

  •     Archeologists discovered what may be Europe’s oldest door while excavating a site in Zurich, Switzerland. Tree ring dating of the wood used to make the door puts its age at roughly 5,100 years old.
  •     No English monarch has passed through the doors of the House of Commons since King Charles I tried to have five of its members arrested in 1642. During the annual State Opening of Parliament ritual, the doors of House of Commons are slammed in the face of Black Rod, the person who serves, more or less, as the monarch’s messenger.
  •     The largest doors in the world are purported to be the entrances to NASA’s Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center. These doors are 456 feet (or 45 stories) tall and take 45 minutes to open or close.
  •     Philadelphia inventor Theophilus Van Kannel received the first U.S. patent for the revolving door in 1888.
  •     In New York City, the Buildings Department states that a revolving door should not, by law, exceed a speed of 15 rotations per minute.
  •     The first monumental bronze doors in the United States were installed in 1863 in the Capitol building in Washington DC
  •     The locksmith industry prospered with the expansion of the economy and personal wealth, brought about by the Industrial Revolution.
  •     Most deadbolts found on commercial and residential doors are pin tumbler locks. It’s thought that the Egyptians invented an early prototype of the modern pin tumbler about 4,000 years ago. However it didn’t catch on until locksmith Linus Yale, Jr. patented one that operated with a small, flat key in 1861.
  •     Hero of Alexandria is credited with designing one of the earliest automatic doors, in the first century AD. The system of counterbalanced, steam-powered weights opened the temple doors when priests made burnt offerings at the alter.

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