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New York Times Facebook Timeline harks back to 1851

Facebook's new Timeline for Pages gives The New York Times an opportunity to show off its history, all the way back to 1851.

New York Times 1851 Timeline entry
The paper's original name was the "New-York Daily Times." Screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

My Facebook Timeline goes back to when I was born, but lists no notable events until 1994. I'm a veritable blip on the Timeline radar compared with The New York Times, which tracks the paper all the way back to the mid 19th century.

The grand old lady of newspapers is taking advantage of the new Timeline for Pages that gives companies a big top banner and list of dates down the side of the profile, a feature that has already been rolled out for personal users.

The paper flaunts its storied history with an image of the first issue from way, way back when. So far, the image has 117 thumbs ups and comments like, "Well! This is old news!" The paper itself cost just 1 cent.

To put this in perspective, let's look at what else happened in 1851. Giuseppe Verdi's opera "Rigoletto" debuted. John Stuart Mill got hitched (of his own free will, of course). William Lassell discovered a couple moons of Uranus that no one had noticed before. Yep, that was a long time ago.

There's been a lot of grumbling about the switch to Timeline, but it's hard to deny the historical cool factor when you get a company like The New York Times going all antique on our newfangled social media.

Maybe when old Northwestern University finally switches over to Timeline, it will also go back to its founding date in 1851 and give The New York Times some Facebook competition.

(Via The Atlantic Wire)