Virtual Museum Canada

Sir SandFord Fleming - The Knight Of Time

The knight of time

Time lag

July 1876
Missed my train STOP Mistake in schedule STOP 5:35 p.m. instead of 5:35 a.m. STOP Unable to leave for 12 hours STOP

The world divided into 24 time zones
lens(75 k)

In July 1876, Sandford Fleming missed a train for Londonderry in Bandoran, Ireland.

British tourist guide
lens(107 k)

This incident led him to reflect on time and its definition. At the time, every town established its own local time on the basis of solar time.

The day was divided in two periods of twelve hours: forenoon (AM in latin: ante meridiem) and afternoon (PM in latin: post meridiem). Fleming first suggested that the day be divided into 24 consecutive hours rather than two periods of 12.

He then went even further, suggesting a new way of calculating time all over the world.