Jules Verne's novels are well known for foreseeing the future, but one of his most famous works is deeply grounded in the 19th century. Published in 1873, "Around the World in 80 Days" shook that very world. For those who lived under a rock for the last 150 years, the book tells of a man, Phileas Fogg, who makes a bet that he can, well, go around the world in 80 days.
(As an aside, we were quite disappointed when we read "80 Days" as kids. We expected epic adventure, but were treated to a tedious travelogue. But we digress.)
The fictional Fogg had many real-life followers and imitators. The most widely-known today is probably Nellie Bly, the American woman who bettered Verne's novel by a good eight days. There were many others.
Not that well-known is Annie Kopchovsky. Like Fogg, she also circumnavigated the world on a bet, doing so to win $5,000. What made her trip more difficult was that she had to do so on a bicycle. Wearing bloomers and armed with a revolver, Annie made it around in 15 months.
So why is this profile titled not Annie Kopchovsky, but Annie Londonderry? She changed her name for the trip to sponsor the Londonderry bottled water company.
Changing a name for corporate sponsorship? Verne was not the only one who foresaw the future...