Pirates — yes, pirates — may be why the U.S. doesn’t use the metric system
Today's history lesson: Pirates may be to blame for the US sticking with imperial units rather than switching to metric. In 1793 scientist Joseph Dombey planned to travel from France to the US to sell Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson on the metric system. Unfortunately for him, his ship got blown off course and he was captured, and ultimately killed, by pirates. Who knows whether Dombey's visit would have been enough to convince the US to ditch pounds in favor of kilograms.