Just now I watched a video clip on the building of the transcontinental railroad of the USA. When the voice-over said, “Theodore D. Judah drafted a plan and sent it to Congress. ‘ A practical plan for building the Pacific Railroad —January 1, 1857…’”, I clearly heard it read “January 1, 1857” as “January one, eighteen fifty-seven”. When I first heard it, I thought I misheard it. So I went back to that sentence in the video and found the voice actor does read the date this way. However, I remember that Collins COBUILD English Usage does not list this way of reading a date in its entry of “Days and Dates”. After watching the video, I went to the dictionary for a check and got the following paragraphs at the entry on p. 176:
You can say the day as an ordinal number, even when it is written in figures as a cardinal number. Speakers of British English say “the” in front of the number. For example, “April 20” is said as “April the twentieth”. Speakers of American English usually say “April twentieth”.
When the month comes after the number, you use “of” in front of the month. For example, “20 April” would be said as “the twentieth of April”.
My question is, Can “January 1, 1857” be read as “January one, eighteen fifty-seven”? Or is it that in Theodore D. Judah's time people read dates this way while nowadays people no longer say it this way. By the way, I right now vaguely remember that I heard another guy read a date this same way in a documentary film about twenty days ago but I cannot recall where I heard it. Please help me with this problem. Thanks a lot.
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