Jan 14, 2016
January 14th, 2017
Quiz: A famous sexploitation film of the 60s was named Ilse, She Wolf of the SS. Was she based on a real person?
Yesterday’s Quiz answered below: Which nation is older? Belgium, Greece, Saudi Arabia or the U.S.A.?
History for 1/14 /2017
Birthdays: Marc Anthony 82BC, Dr. Albert Schweitzer, Benedict Arnold, Faye Dunaway is 76, Hal Roach, Richard F. Outcault, Cecil Beaton, John Dos Passos, Lawrence Kasdan, Guy Williams, Andy Rooney, Julian Bond, Steven Soderbergh is 54, LL Cool J, Emily Watson is 50
350AD. The feast day of Saint Hilary of Poitiers- Saint Hilary was the father of church music. In exile in Phyrgia, he noticed pagans sang hymns to their deities, so he composed the first Christian music. The Halleluiah Chorus, Ave Maria, and “Drop Kick Me Jesus Through the Goalposts of Heaven” would follow in due time.
1604- King James 1st of England thought he could be like Roman Emperor Constantine and use his royal authority to resolve the theological disputes dividing Christianity. This day he convened at Hampton Court a grand synod of Anglican Bishops, Presbyterians, Baptists and Puritan elders to try and settle their differences. Nothing was solved, but the only positive step was a motion was made to create a standardized translation of the Holy Bible into English- The King James Edition.
1639- The Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, the first constitution for a colony, is established. The Connecticut territory was a disputed area between the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam and the English New Englanders until the English conquest of 1661. The personal intervention of the Duke of York prevented Long Island from being made part of Connecticut.
1699- The Pilgrims of Salem hold a day of fasting and prayer to atone for any people they may have unjustly tortured and executed as witches. Well, at least they said they were sorry.
1797- Battle of Rivoli. Napoleon defeats the Austrians in Italy.
1831- Victor Hugo’s novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame first published.
1858- Italian terrorists throw three bombs at French Emperor Napoleon III’s carriage outside the Paris Opera. 8 killed and 158 wounded, but not the Imperial family.
1893- After Britain’s Liberal party broke up over the Irish Question, the Independent Labor Party was founded.
1900- Puccini's opera "Tosca" debuts in Rome.
1914- Henry Ford's assembly line process for building cars accelerates car production, thanks to a new chain system pulling the chassis along as they are worked on. As the system got faster and faster the older, slower workers were replaced by younger ones. Hair dye sold at a premium in Detroit.
1943- Churchill and Roosevelt hold a summit meeting in Casablanca in North Africa. The Casablanca Declaration bound the allies to never negotiate less than a total surrender out of the Axis powers. It was felt that one of the reason Germany resorted to war only twenty years after the last World War was their denial that they were ever defeated.
At one point Churchill made a number of American diplomats and staff climb a high tower in the Casbah because he thought the setting sun would make a smashing good watercolor painting.
Sixty Five Years Ago- 1952-The NBC "Today" show debuts with Dave Garroway, Jim Fleming and J. Fred Muggs the chimp.
1954- actress Marilyn Monroe married baseball great Joe DiMaggio.
1957- Humphrey Bogart died of esophageal cancer at age 57. When he was buried at Forrest Lawn, wife Lauren Bacall put in with his ashes a solid gold whistle inscribed with the famous line from "To Have and To Have Not"- 'If you ever need me, just whistle.' The group of friends around Bogie and Bacall were nicknamed ‘The Rat Pack”.
After Bogart’s death Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin made the Rat Pack famous.
1964- Hanna & Barbera's ' The Magilla Gorilla' cartoon show.
Fifty Years Ago 1967- HIPPIES! The first “ Human Be-In” in Golden Gate Park. The Jefferson Airplane and Grateful Dead performed. Allan Ginsburg, Ram Dass and Timothy Leary spoke. LSD was laced into turkey sandwiches, and soon the crowd of 30,000 was high. The national media played up the event, and the rest of America first saw the power of the Hippy youth culture, and heard the word like “psychedelic” and Timothy Leary saying “ Tune in, Turn on, Drop out.” It was the prelude to the Summer of Love.
1972- Norman Lear’s hit TV comedy series Sanford & Son premiered. Starring Red Fox, it was based on the English show Steptoe & Son.
2004- Trying to channel JFK, President George W. Bush declared in his State of the Union speech his intention to return America to the Moon by 2020 and make a manned landing on Mars by 2030. To do this he gave NASA only one billion dollars more than their regular budget, while at the same time allocating $1.5 billion to fight gay marriage initiatives.
2005- The Cassini-Huygens Probe landed on Saturn’s moon Titan.
Yesterday’s Quiz: Which nation is older? Belgium, Greece, Saudi Arabia or the U.S.A.?
Answer: The USA- 1776. The Greek people obviously go back to the migrations of Dorians and Ionians in the 800s BC. They called themselves Hellenes. But the modern nation of Greece was created in 1827. The Arabs of Medina and the Hejaz also go back to ancient times, but the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia began in 1948. Flanders and the Spanish Netherlands broke away from Holland in 1832 and became the Belgium.
Jan 13, 2016
January 13th, 2017
Quiz: Which nation is older? Belgium, Greece, Saudi Arabia or the U.S.A.?
Answer to yesterday’s question below: What is a bon mot?
HISTORY FOR 1/13/2017
Birthdays: Salmon P. Chase, Horatio Alger-1834, Sophie Tucker, Gwen Verdon, Robert Stack, Charles Nelson Reilly, Rip Taylor, Brandon Tartikoff, Julie Louise Dreyfus is 56, T. Bone Burnett is 69, Patrick Dempsey, Orlando Bloom is 40
565A.D. THE NIKA SEDITION- In ancient Byzantium like Rome before her, the big spectator sport was chariot racing. Fans went crazy, lots of money wagered and charioteers were celebrities. The choice seats at the Hippodrome and Circus Maximus were not at the finish lines but on the turns, because that’s where the most crashes were. Chariots were raced in teams like modern race cars (Team Unser, Team Ferrari etc.) and were distinguished by their colors. The big teams were the Blues and Greens. The Whites and the Reds were always kind of second rate. They even had their own booster clubs who carried the arguments over races into the streets and beat each other up.
On this day the hooliganism of the booster clubs got so out of hand that they rioted in the streets and burned down half of Constantinople. Emperor Justinian had to bring in the legions to restore order. The fan clubs were called in Latin FACTIOS, from where we get the words "fan, factions and fanatic".
1687- Father Eusebio Kino began his missionary work in the Spanish Southwest. He founded several missions in Arizona and helped introduce the horse, pairs of whom were brought over from Spain and released around Santa Fe to multiply in the wild. The Italian born Jesuit’s travels also proved that California was not a big island as previously thought.
1733- James Oglethorpe reached Charleston South Carolina with a large contingent of colonists plucked from prisons back in England. His goal was to sail down to the Savannah River and create a new colony to stand as a buffer state between Spanish Florida and the English holdings. He called new colony after King George- Georgia.
1777- Virginia Governor Thomas Jefferson signed a bill in the legislature banning sodomy. The penalty for conviction was castration.
1847- Gen. Andres Pico signed the capitulation of Campo de Cahuenga (the little park across from Universal studios today), surrendering the Mexican state of Alta-California to U.S. General John Fremont. Fremont, nicknamed "The Pathfinder" was the first Republican candidate for President in 1856 and when the Civil War began he was a General until the confederates made a fool of him and he dropped from public view. During the Civil War Andres Pico served in the Yankee force that defeated an attempted Confederate invasion of California. I guess he figured one change of flag in a lifetime was enough.
1849- Battle of Chillianwalah. The British army under Lord Hugh Gough defeated the Sikh army of Sher Singh and conquered the Punjab. Gough was a blunt old style soldier. When his second mentioned the army was almost out of cannonballs, Gough responded:” Good! Then we shall be at them with the bayonet!” This was the first battle where common soldiers’ bravery was “mentioned in dispatches” by the commander. At one point a befuddled major issued the wrong orders to a key troop of cavalry who would have galloped away from the battle but they were rallied by their chaplain. For his bravery, Lord Gough recommended the chaplain be promoted to Brevet-Bishop.
1854- The modern Accordion is patented by Anthony Faas. Polka fans rejoice!
1864-Stephen Foster, the composer of "Old Kentucky Home" and "Camptown Races" was found dead, a penniless drunk in New York's Bowery slum. In his hands was a piece of paper with the words "Dear friends and gentle hearts... ". A Pennsylvania Yankee, despite writing a lot of music about the South, he only visited it once, to New Orleans in 1852.
1872- GRANDDUKE ALEXIS BUFFALO HUNT. Grand Duke Alexis the son of the Czar of Russia visited America. A sportsman, He expressed a desire to go out West and hunt buffalo. The US Government ordered General Custer and Buffalo Bill to afford him every courtesy. Buffalo Bill even talked Sioux Chief Spotted Tail to move his tribe’s winter encampment 100 miles south so Alexis could experience real wild Indians. Starting today the hunting party hunted and feasted for two weeks leaving behind a trail of champagne bottles and buffalo carcasses. The trip was a great success and Buffalo Bill realized there was big money to be made in showing city slickers and foreigners a taste of the Wild West…
1874- Chang and Eng Bunker were the original Siamese Twins joined at the chest and sharing one liver. Since leaving Thailand they traveled the world with P.T. Barnum showing off their unique physique to paying crowds. They married two women and produced 21 offspring. As they aged they made a deal that they wouldn’t be physically separated until one of them died. This day Chang awoke to discover his brother Eng had died. He frantically called for the doctor to come and separate them. But the doctor was late, and when he arrived Chang had died as well. They were 62.
1895- Oscar Wilde’s play The Ideal Husband, premiered in London.
1898- Under the banner headline "J'Accuse !" a Paris newspaper printed writer Emile Zola's stinging criticism of the French government's handling of the Dreyfus scandal, blowing the whole thing wide open. The army sued Zola for libel, and he went into exile to avoid imprisonment. He returned to France after Dreyfus was pardoned one year later.
1906- The first ad for a radio appeared in an American Science Magazine. It boasted an effective range of over one mile !
1910- Dr. Lee Deforest experimenting with his new radio vacuum tubes broadcast singers from New York's Metropolitan Opera for the first time. The regular Texaco 'Live from the Met' broadcasts wouldn't get going until 1934.
1914- Folksinging union organizer Joe Hill was arrested in Utah on trumped up murder charges.
1925- THE FIRST CALIFORNIA GURU- Indian spiritual teacher Parahamansa Yogananda , then called “The Swami” settled in Los Angeles and gave his first lecture to an audience in LA Philharmonic Hall. He founded the Malibu Self-Realization Center in 1950. It featured one shovel-full of ashes from the funeral pyre of Mahatma Gandhi.
1929- Wyatt Earp died at 82 of prostate cancer in Los Angeles. After careers as a gunfighter, buffalo hunter, Dodge City marshal, prizefight referee, Yukon gold prospector and faroe dealer he finished in L.A. speculating in real estate. He liked to stroll onto Hollywood western movie sets to give advice to Tom Mix and William S. Hart on how they did it in the Old West. He was buried in San Francisco's Jewish Cemetery because his third wife, ex-saloongirl Sadie Marcus was of that faith. On the subject of the Gunfight of the OK Corral in 1881 he told so many different versions of what happened that his account is considered unreliable. But no one denied that in all his gunfights he was never even scratched.
Wyatt Earp would have died totally forgotten but in his last years he was interviewed by a journalist named Stuart Lake who published a best selling biography in 1931 called Wyatt Earp, Frontier Marshal. After that the movies and TV took up his name to make him the most famous lawman in western history, which would have been a surprise to him.
1930- The Mickey Mouse comic strip first appeared in US newspapers. Walt Disney himself wrote them, Ub Iwerks penciled and Winn Smith inked.
1943- Movie starlet Frances Farmer was dragged screaming in a straightjacket out of a Hollywood Hotel and committed. She screamed Rats! Rats! and listed her occupation on her arrest record as “c**ksucker”. Her career was ruined and she spent years in asylums. But it’s inconclusive whether she had actually suffered mental illness or it was her mother overreacting to her sullen, temperamental nature.
1945- Sergei Prokoviev’s 5th Symphony (Classical) premiered in Moscow.
1946- In his comic strip, Dick Tracy first uses his two-way wrist radio.
1953-" The Doctor's Plot"- Aging Soviet dictator Josef Stalin decided to launch a new purge and shoot and imprison thousands of people. He announced he had uncovered a conspiracy of counter revolutionists and spies to bribe doctors to poison top Soviet officials. Luckily Stalin died before he could kick off his new terror campaign. As he lay stricken with a stroke on his deathbed, his doctor was too afraid to treat him.
1957-THE FRISBEE went into production today. Two World War II fighter pilots who were POWs, Warren Fransconi and Walter Morrison, invented the plastic platter in a San Luis Obisbo home. Originally called Flying Saucers and Pluto’s Platters, they got the name Frisbee when they demonstrated it at Yale University. The students there were used to flipping pie platters at each other from the local Frisbee Pie Company, so when they played with the new disc, they cried “Frisbee, Frisbee!” which seemed to Walter a better name.
When Walt Morrison died in 2002, his family obeyed his last request, to have his body cremated, his ashes mixed with plastic, and molded into a Frisbee.
1958- Actress Jayne Mansfield married weightlifter Mickey Hargitay. Their daughter was Marisa Hargitay
1979- The Young Men’s Christian Association filed a lawsuit against the rock group the Village People over their hit song “YMCA”.
1979- Russian animator Yuri Nortstein’s masterpiece Tale of Tales premiered.
1985- Carol Wayne, an actress who played bimbo blonde roles on shows like Johnny Carson, drowned while swimming in Mexico. She was 41.
2002- Pres. George W. Bush almost choked to death on a pretzel, while alone watching football on TV.
2011- The huge Italian luxury cruise liner Casta Concordia ran aground on rocks off the coast of Umbria and capsized, killing 200. The captain of the ship was not present when the ship was in crisis because he was in his cabin with a hot Venezuelan woman he was chasing. After the crash he left his sinking ship early and was seen in town when everyone else was still trying to rescue survivors. He was arrested.
Yesterday’s Quiz: What is a bon mot?
Answer: A bon mot is a brief, witty remark.
Jan 2, 2016
January 12th, 2017
QUIZ: What is a bon mot?
Answer to yesterdays question below: Okay Boomers, what did TWA stand for..?
History for 1/12/2017
Birthdays: Pilgrim leader John Winthrop, Charles Perrault (Mother Goose), John Hancock, Edmund Burke, John Singer Sargent, Jack London, James Farmer the founder of CORE, Herman Goering, "Smokin' Joe" Frazier, Tex Ritter, Martin Agronsky, Howard Stern is 62, Rush Limbaugh, Oliver Platt is 57, Wayne Wang, Tiffany, Kirstie Alley is 61, Disney Animator John Sibley, Pixar director John Lasseter is 60
Festival of Sarasvati –the Hindu Goddess of Wisdom.
1493- All Jews ordered to leave Sicily.
1519-Vasco Nunez de Balboa, Spanish discoverer of the Pacific, was convicted of treason, rebellion and mistreatment of Indians and beheaded. The cause was probably more that the local colonial governor Pedro de Arias hated him.
1641- The Virginia Colony passed a law that if any Indian committed a crime, the first Indian seen, even if he was completely innocent, would be compelled to pay his fine.
1669- Buccaneer Henry Morgan convened a meeting of the Captains of the Coast, a council of pirates on board his frigate the Oxford. In their meeting they resolved to attack Cartagena Columbia, a rich Spanish port and staging area for Spanish treasure galleons. During the drunken celebrations someone fired a gun off in the Oxford’s powder magazine and the ensuing explosion killed 200. Arrr..!
1800- The frigate USS Experiment was attacked by ten pirate ships off Hispaniola.
1809- A group of Viennese businessmen convinced Ludwig Van Beethoven not to move to another city by paying him a yearly allowance. Beethoven continually worried about money and pleaded poverty, yet after his death people found thousands of silver coins hidden in little pots and cupboards throughout his home. He used to charge people three marks to come and look at him through his window while he composed.
1812- The first Mississippi steamboat brought a cargo of cotton bales from Natchez to New Orleans to be loaded onto a transatlantic ship. This is the beginning of the riverboat trade Mark Twain made famous.
1898- Nationalist riots broke out in the Spanish colony of Cuba. U.S. President McKinley sent the battleship Maine to Havana harbor to protect American interests. Americans have coveted Cuba since James Madison's time. Just before the Civil War broke out, Southern businessmen paid mercenaries to conquer Cuba from Spain and bring her into the union as a new slave state. The U.S. threatened Spain with war over Cuba in 1870 and 1874 as well.
1928- A police raid seized 800 copies of the novel “The Well of Loneliness” by Radclyffe Hall because it was considered to promote lesbianism.
1928- Henry Grey and Ruth Snyder are electrocuted in Sing-Sing Prison for the murder of Mrs. Snyder's husband. The love triangle was the inspiration for the films 'Double Indemnity, The Postman Always Rings Twice' and 'Body Heat". Press photographer Thomas Howard taped a small camera to his ankle and snapped a photo of Mrs Snyder frying in the chair. The New York Daily News published the photo on its front page.
1942- German submarine U-123 torpedoed the American tanker S.S. Norness right outside the entrance to New York Harbor. The night before the U-123 had actually sailed right past the Statue of Liberty in the dead of night. Captain Reinhard Hardegen was surprised the Americans had not instituted black-out rules yet. The lights of Manhattan twinkled brightly. The incident sent panic up and down the Eastern seaboard. The New York Museum of Natural History even moved its Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton to Pittsburgh, to save it from Nazis attack.
1945- To the overture of thousands of heavy cannons and Katyusha rockets the Red army crossed the Vistula in Poland to begin it’s final offensive against the Third Reich. This would end at with Hitler’s death and the surrender of Berlin. The German’s nicknamed the multiple firing Katyushas “Stalin’s Pipe Organ”.
1945- Japan signed licensing contracts and received from Nazi Germany their plans for jet fighters. Work was begun on a Japanese version of the Messerschmidt ME 262, the worlds’ first jet fighter, but they were too late to effect the wars end. The first Japanese jet flew over Tokyo on Aug 6th, 1945, the day Hiroshima was atomic-bombed.
1960-” The Scent of Mystery”- the first film in Smell-O-Vision.
1962- President John F. Kennedy signed Executive order 10988, mandating federal workers had the right to join unions and bargain collectively. In 2001 in the trauma over 9-11, President George W. Bush demanded his newly organized 50,000 member Department of Homeland Security be forbidden to unionize.
1965- NBC TV premiered Hullabaloo, a Rock & Roll dance show with lots of mini-skirted go-go dancers. ABC responded with Shindig.
1966- Holy Cult Classic ! The TV show "Batman" with Adam West and Burt Ward premiered.
1969- Super Bowl III, Broadway Joe Namath and the underdog NY Jets upset the Baltimore Colts led by the legendary Johnny Unitas.
1970- The Boeing 747 makes it’s first flight.
1970- The Biafran Civil War ended.
1971- “ ALL IN THE FAMILY” Norman Lear's TV sitcom about racism and the 60's, debuted. Based on a successful British show Steptoe and Son, it broke new ground for American sitcoms by frankly discussing race prejudice, menopause, rape and other taboo subjects. The first show featured the sound of a toilet flushing. The networks were so worried about its explosive content ABC rejected the show twice, and CBS ran the first episodes with a long apologetic disclaimer. Carrol O’Connor, the actor who played Archie Bunker, was so convinced the show would flop, he demanded as part of his contract a round trip plane ticket home. The show ran for 13 years, a bushel of Emmy Awards and made Archie Bunker a folk-hero.
1971- Jesuit Father Daniel Berrigan, nun Sister Elizabeth McAllister and several others were indicted in Federal court for conspiracy. The Catholic clerics were trying to bring an end to the Vietnam War through non-violent acts of civil disobedience. After handcuffing themselves to missiles and the gates of army bases the government alleged their scheme was to kidnap top Nixon diplomat Henry Kissinger and sabotage the State Department heating systems in the dead of winter. All charges were eventually overturned.
1987-No mystery, Agatha Christie dies at 88 of natural causes.
1995- Steven Speilberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen announced the name of their new partnership would be 'Dreamworks SKG'. Someone in Florida immediately bought the domain name “Dreamworks.com” and waited for their buyout offer. I heard it was $5,000.
1997-According to Arthur C. Clarkes 1968 book "2001, a Space Odyssey", the HAL-9000 computer was booted up today.
1998-The LEWINSKY SCANDAL- Former White House staffer Linda Tripp was frustrated her career in the Clinton Administration was going nowhere. This day she appeared in the office of independent special prosecutor Kenneth Starr with tape recordings she secretly made of her friend Monica Lewinsky. They admitted to a sexual affair with the President. Conservative Judge Starr had been investigating Slick-Willie Clinton for years. After spending $54 million tax dollars, he hadn’t found much. So he immediately leaped at this opportunity, and asked the Attorney General for an extension of his mandate.
Ms. Lewinsky had meant to keep her affair a secret, despite her telling 11 friends. By autumn the resultant scandal brought Washington to a standstill and only the second presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history. President Clinton first lied, then admitted to the affair, but was acquitted and served out his term anyway. Then Linda Tripp asked the public for donations for her legal defense fund for her violating federal wiretap laws “I am one of you...a David against a Goliath...Even $1,000 dollars would do..” She took the money and got a facelift.
2001- The Cohen Bros film Oh, Brother Where Art Thou? Goes into general release.
2002-The Refusenik Movement began in Israel when 53 Israeli Army officers announced they refused to enforce the Likud Government’s policy in the West Bank & Gaza.
Yesterdays’ Question: Okay Boomers, what did TWA stand for..?
Answer: Trans World Airlines.
Jan 11, 2016
January 11th, 2017
Quiz: Okay Boomers, what did TWA stand for..?
Yesterday’s question answered below. Its been said Trumps spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway made a Faustian Bargain. What is a Faustian Bargain?
History for 1/11/2017
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Theodosius I, Alexander Hamilton, Gliere, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Harry Selfridge the London department store guy, Rod Taylor, David Wolper, Lyle Lovett, Ben Crenshaw, Naomi Judd, Joan Baez, Stanley Tucci, Disney animator Prez Romanillos, Amanda Peet is 45
Roman festival Carmentalia, or the Feast of the Nine Muses.
1025-Byzantine Emperor John Tzimisces poisoned. He had become Emperor after seducing the previous emperors wife and assassinating him. John was succeeded by Basil II "the Bulgar Slayer".
1775- Frances Salvador, a South Carolina plantation owner was elected to the colony’s legislature. This makes him the first person of the Jewish faith to ever hold office in America. He was known as the Paul Revere of the South, because he raised the alarm through the countryside when the redcoats approached Charleston. One year later he was killed by British armed Cherokees.
1803 –U.S. diplomats James Monroe and Robert Livingston sailed for France to try and make a deal with Napoleon for the city of New Orleans. Instead, Napoleon sells them the entire U.S. Midwest, from the Bayous to Montana. Such a deal!
1813- SAUVE’ QUI PEUT! “Every Man for Himself.” Joachim Murat was a bold cavalryman who rose to high command under Napoleon. He married Napoleon’s sister Caroline and was made the King of Naples. That meant the bottom half of Italy. But after Napoleon’s disastrous Retreat From Moscow, Murat began the New Year by changing sides. He abandoned the freezing French army recovering in Poland and announced he was taking Naples into the Grand Alliance against Napoleon. Even Nappy’s own sister Caroline endorsed his decision. But this amazing act of betrayal didn’t save his throne. Murat was still overthrown and shot by firing squad.
1862- Abraham Lincoln accepted the resignation of Simon Cameron as Secretary of War. Lincoln said:” The only thing that man never stole was a red hot stove.” He replaced him with Edwin Stanton, a lawyer who was the first to get a client off a murder charge with a plea of temporary insanity.
1863- The Confederate Armies in Tennessee and Kentucky were commanded by General Baxton Bragg, a conscientious if sour and unimaginative man. Bragg wasted two near victories at Perryville and Stones River by ordering a retreat just when the Yankees were beaten. Southern newspapers called for his ouster.
This day Bragg demanded a letter of support from all his generals. His top divisional commanders Hardee, Cleburne, Cheatham and Breckenridge not only refused, they sent their own letters to Richmond calling him an incompetent coward. Nathan Bedford Forrest hated Bragg so much, he once pulled his sword on him. But Bragg had a friend in President Jefferson Davis. Baxton Bragg convinced Davis he was the innocent victim of a conspiracy. So Davis reconfirmed Bragg in command. Only after losing most of the state of Tennessee was Bragg finally replaced. He was promoted, kicked upstairs.
1863- Battle of Arkansas Post. Union forces under John McClernand and David Dixon Porter capture a large Confederate fort guarding the conflux of the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers. McClernand at one point was angling with the War Dept. to replace that drunk Ulysses S. Grant.
1874- Gail Borden, the inventor of condensed milk, died and was buried beneath a tombstone made to look like one of his milk cans.
1879- THE ZULU WAR began. British control over the Boers ( white afrikkaners of South Africa ) was always strained. The Governor of Capetown. Lord Chelmsford, decided to distract the Boers by picking a fight with neighboring KwaZulu, the Zulu Empire, the largest centralized black state in Africa. He had only vague instructions from the Foreign Office to do so. Still he was confident a few natives with spears wouldn't give a modern European army too much trouble. On Jan. 22nd the Zulu massacred his regiments at Ishandlwana, inflicting the worst defeat on a British army in a generation. The full weight of the British Empire, including units brought from India and Canada, were required to finish a war started over nothing, by a regional governor.
1892- French impressionist painter Paul Gaughin, aged 46, married a 13 year old Tahitian girl named Tehura.
1908- President Teddy Roosevelt declared the entire Grand Canyon a National Monument. “The Ages have been at work at it and Man can only mar it.”
1913- Horse drawn public transport ended in Paris. As the last horse-omnibus moved through the streets. Parisians held mock funerals.
1922- Insulin first used to treat diabetes.
1942- Japanese forces attacked the Dutch East Indies and Borneo.
1943- American Communist writer Carlos Tresca was shot and killed on a New York street. His killer was never found. It’s been speculated he was killed by agents of Mussolini or even agents of Stalin.
1944- Mussolini has his foreign minister Count Ciano and his army chief Marshal De Bono, shot by firing squad. Count Ciano was his own son-in-law.
1948- President Harry Truman called for the creation of free, two year community colleges for all those who desired a college education.
1949- The first recorded snowfall in Los Angeles.
1949- Cornerstone laid for Washington D.C.’s Islamic Center, the first major mosque in the US. According to the 1990 census there are today more Americans of the Islamic Faith than Mormons.
1964- U.S. Surgeon General Luther Terry gave the first warnings against smoking.
1965- Whisky-A-Go-Go, the first Disco opened on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. Discotecque is French for record library. An earlier Whisky had opened in Chicago. The LA Whisky a Go Go opened with a live band led by Johnny Rivers, featuring a mini-skirted female DJ spinning records between sets from a suspended cage at the right of the stage. That July the DJ danced during Rivers' set, the audience thought it was part of the act and the concept of Go-Go dancers was born. Groovy!
1995- Warner Bros purchased a dozen metromedia television stations around the US and this day started them off as the WB Network. Today CW.
1999- John Stewart became the anchor of the Daily Show on Comedy Central.
2004- Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg registered the domain name Facebook.com.
Yesterday’ Question: Its been said Trumps spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway made a Faustian Bargain. What is a Faustian Bargain?
Answer: In Christopher Marlowe’s 1597 play Dr. Faustus, and later by Goethe, Faust was a medieval doctor who makes a deal with the Devil (Mephistopheles) for his soul in exchange for worldly pleasure and power. Today a "Faustian Bargain" is when someone trades their integrity and core beliefs for worldly gain.
Jan 10, 2016
January 10th, 2017
Quiz: Its been said Trumps spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway made a Faustian Bargain. What is a Faustian Bargain?
Yesterday’s question answered below: How do you wear a Baldric? (hint: Victorian men’s couture )
History for 1/10/2017
Birthdays: Ethan Allen, Marshal Michel Ney, Frank James -Jesse's brother, Francois Poulenc, Ray Bolger (the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz), Al Goldstein the publisher of Screw Magazine, Stephen Ambrose, Sherrill Milnes, Pat Benatar, Sal Mineo, Jim Croce, Rod Stewart, Walter Hill, George Foreman, Linda Lovelace, Roy E Disney Jr, Jermaine Clement of Flight of the Concords is 43
50 B.C.- "Jacta Esta Alea!" Gaius Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon River near modern Rimini with his legions and began a civil war for control of the Roman Empire. Caesar had been ordered by the Senate to give up his army command in Gaul and not bring his troops down. Once stripped of command he could be open to lawsuits, investigation and criminal charges. Years before Scipio Africanis, the defeater of Hannibal, was ruined by his political enemies this way. So instead Caesar attacked. The Rubicon was the border between the outer provinces and the home territory of Rome. Since then, "Crossing the Rubicon" means committing to a course of action you cannot turn back from. Caesar said "Alea jacta est" which means "The die is cast".
1072- Robert Giscard captured Palermo. At the same time Norman warriors under William the Conqueror were overrunning England and Scotland, other Normans were traveling south and spreading out across Southern Italy, Sicily and Dalmatia. They weren’t a national conquering army under a king, just professional mercenaries out for personal gain. They occupied Sicily and became the shock troops of the First Crusade. The Normans were finally driven out in 1282.
1529- Michelangelo elected to design the military defenses of Florence. They failed to keep out the enemy, but they must have looked really beautiful!
1538- Martin Luther declared that Purgatory does not exist. " God in the Gospel of Mark has placed two ways before us- Salvation by faith or Damnation by unbelief."
1642- King Charles I slipped out of London as the city grew increasingly hostile to his cause. Londoners threw garbage out their windows at his Royal Guards. He traveled north to gather supporters. Parliament superseded the authority of the Mayor of London and called up the city militia. The English Civil War would break out in September.
1744- Bonnie Prince Charlie left exile in Rome to go to Scotland and start his uprising.
1775- PUGACHEV’S RISING. Yemelian Pugachev was an illiterate Cossack. One day, for a laugh, his friends shaved his beard off while he was too drunk to notice. Without the beard they discovered he bore an amazing likeness to the Catherine the Great's dead husband, Czar Peter III. There was deep resentment in Russia among the common folk against the rule of Czarina Catherine. She was modernizing Russia against it's will and wasn't even Russian (she was a German princess).
Pugachev declared himself the Czar Peter, back to reclaim his throne for the Muziks (peasants) and the Old Religion. Pugachev's Rising cost tens of thousands of lives before Catherine's armies stamped it out. Today Pugachev was brought to Moscow in an iron cage, then beheaded. A comparable Russian people's uprising would not be seen again until 1905.
1776- COMMON SENSE published. Thomas Paine's pamphlet explaining the case for liberty was considered psychologically decisive in garnering mass support among average Americans. Washington called it -"more valuable than a hundred cannon." Englishman Paine, a former corset maker, had only been living in America for one year.
1855- The Clackamas People of the Oregon territory sold some most of their prime timberland for $500 and some food.
1861- Benito Juarez elected President of the Mexican Republic. The statesman spoke Zapotec before he learned Spanish, and became the first Indian head of Mexico since the last Aztec Emperor Guatamoc in 1519. During Emperor Maximillian’s French occupation, Juarez's government was constantly on the run along the Texas border but he refused to ever cross it. He felt his legitimate government must never leave Mexican soil.
1861- Florida became the third state to secede from the Union.
1863-The world's first Subway Train line opened in London at Baker's Street Station.
1870- John D. Rockefeller first formed the company called Standard Oil. In 1911 it changed its name to Esso and Humble, then in 1973 Exxon.
1878- the first Constitutional Amendment proposing to give women the right to vote is proposed in Congress. Suffragette leaders Elizabeth Cady-Stanton and Susan B. Anthony looked for three months for a senator with the guts to sponsor it. It was defeated but it was brought up at every congressional session for the next 45 years. (see below 1917-1918)
1888-date of LOUIS LePRINCE's claim of a patent on Motion Pictures, predating Edison 1893 and the Lumiere Brothers1895. LePrince even had as proof a film he shot of his mother, who had died in 1887. Despite this, LePrince could get no one to take him seriously. One day he boarded a train from Dijon to Paris and disappeared from the face of the Earth.
1901- SPINDLETOP- BLACK GOLD, TEXAS TEA..- Conventional wisdom up till then was America’s oil reserves were chiefly around the Great Lakes and Pennsylvania. On this day Texas wildcat drillers strike oil in Beaumont Texas. The Spindletop gusher is so gigantic, 3,000 barrels an hour, it doubles the total U.S. oil production output overnight. Companies like Gulf and Texaco spring up to compete with industry leader Standard Oil (Exxon). The era of the Texas Oil Tycoons began and until they ran dry in the 1970s, America controlled 80% of the worlds petroleum output.
1906- The London Daily Mail coined a new term for women politically agitating to gain suffrage or the right to vote "Suffragettes".
1910- Joyce Clyde Hall started the company that became Hallmark Cards.
1917- On the anniversary of the first women’s right to vote bill The Women's Suffragette Movement began a 24 hour round the clock protest in front of the White House. It is the first time the White House was ever publicly picketed. Ten suffragettes are jailed but are immediately replaced by ten more, who when arrested are replaced by more, then more.
1917- Frontiersman and master showman Buffalo Bill Cody died at 70 of uremia poisoning. His last words after he was told his end had come was "Ah forget it boys, let's play a round of High-Five." Today his grave still overlooks the city of Denver.
1918- 45 years after being first proposed the Constitutional Amendment granting women the right to vote passed in Congress. Up in the visitor's gallery suffragettes burst out a spontaneous rendition of the hymn 'Praise God from Whom All Blessing's Flow."
1919- The League of Nations formed. The United States refusal to join and the Leagues refusal to admit Soviet Russia would doom this early attempt at a United Nations. Being dominated by old colonial powers like Britain and France it ignored the national aspirations of 3rd world countries like Syria and Vietnam. Finally the aggressive actions of the Fascist powers like Germany ,Italy and Japan revealed the impotence of the League. The Leagues failure and World War Two was used to make the point about the United Nations in 1945.
1923- When the defeated Germans proved too slow in paying the massive postwar indemnities (cash payments) to the Allies for World War I, a Franco-Belgian army occupied the Ruhr Valley industrial area. This cuts off the already ruined German economy from 80% of its steel and coal. The French leave after massive steel strikes and riots, and leave the Germans fresh hatreds to avenge later.
1924- Columbia Pictures created, ruled by Harry Cohn, whose motto was "I don't get ulcers, I give them!"
1927- Fritz Lang’s masterpiece film Metropolis premiered.
1929- The comic character Tin Tin first appeared in a Belgian newspaper XXe Siecle.
1939- Science fiction writer Isaac Asimov sold his first story to Amazing Stories Magazine "Marooned off Vesta".
1941- The comedy play ARSENIC AND OLD LACE opened on Broadway. Playwright Joseph Kesselring originally wrote it as a drama based on true events, until he was advised - and, wisely so - to turn it into a dark comedy instead, guaranteeing a larger audience. When someone joked that Mortimer’s evil brother looked Boris Karloff, the character was indeed played by famous horror movie star Boris Karloff. He was an investor in the play. When buying the movie rights Warner Bros agreed to wait until the play ended its theatrical run. They thought plays usually are done in a few months. Arsenic and Old Lace ran until 1944. It was then made into a classic screwball comedy with Cary Grant and Raymond Massey.
1949- For years the recording industry had been working on ways to improve the 78 RPM record –RPM means Rotations Per Minute. RCA records announced the invention of the 45 RPM record. Columbia (CBS) had announced the LP 33 rpm record and originally offered to share the technology but RCA (NBC) was having none of it. But the 33 stored more music and could use old 78 rpm turntables adapted so the 45 soon became a vehicle for hit singles.
1958- Jerry Lee Lewis single "Great Balls of Fire" topped the pop charts.
1958- GET MARRIED..OR ELSE! Blond actress Kim Novak had starred in Hitchcock’s Vertigo and was touted as the new Marilyn Monroe. In 1957 she began a love affair with black entertainer Sammy Davis Jr. Davis was a member of Sinatra’s Ratpack and he challenged America’s racial barriers with his great talent. But this high profile interracial match was just too much for Hollywood society to handle. Columbia’s studio head Harry Cohn said of Novak-"That fat Polack Bitch! How could she do this to me?! "
Legend has it Cohn called the Chicago Mafia and put a contract out on Sammy Davis. L.A. mobster Mickey Cohen told Davis’ father that if Sammy didn’t marry a colored girl in 24 hours he would have his legs broken and his remaining good eye poked out.
On this day in Las Vegas’ Sands Hotel Sammy Davis Jr. married black actress Loray White. Harry Belafonte was the best man. The couple honeymooned separately and divorced 6 months later. But the affair with Novak was over and Harry Cohn died of a heart attack the same year. In 1960 Sammy Davis married blonde German actress May Britt.
1961- Writer Dashell Hammett died.
1967- Lester Maddox was sworn in as Governor of Georgia. Maddox was a high school dropout who gained national stature when he refused to allow black people to eat at his restaurant, the PickNick Café in Atlanta. Maddox passed out axe handles to white patrons to beat Civil Rights workers. Maddox finally closed his restaurant rather than integrate.
1970- Masterpiece Theater debuted on US TV with host Alastair Cooke. The first show was the BBC series The First Churchills. These shows were so popular that for awhile people thought PBS meant Preferably British Shows.
1972- The liner Queen Elizabeth 1, on her retirement journey to the scrap yard, mysteriously caught fire and sank in Hong Kong harbor.
1992- The GREAT RUBBER DUCKY DISASTER- A North Pacific storm causes a ship to lose 29,000 plastic rubber duck toys overboard. They joined 61,000 Nike sneakers already bobbing in the water from a similar maritime accident. Scientists used the rubber ducky migration to track Pacific Ocean currents around Alaska.
1993- CAMILLAGATE- As speculation grew that the English Prince and Princess of Wales' marriage was on the rocks a London tabloid published tapes of phone conversations between Prince Charles and his long term mistress Lady Camilla Parker Bowles. The highly embarrassing transcripts included the Prince expressing a wish that he could be Ms. Bowles' tampon. Camilla's husband divorced her and Charles and Diana soon divorced as well. Within a year of Princess Diana's fatal auto accident Camilla resumed spending the night at Kensington Palace. Camilla and Charles married in 2005.
2000- AOL and Time Warner announced a $165 billion dollar merger that made it the world’s largest media company. Considered now one of the worst business deals in history, the company lost $80 billion in one year. The deal almost sank both companies, uprooted both chairmen, and they detached permanently in 2009.
2004- NY based Writer and actor Spaulding Gray spent the day taking his kids to the movies. They saw Tim Burton’s Big Fish. Gray put his kids into a taxi home and from the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, called his wife to say he would be home soon and that he loved her. Then he took the ferry, jumped into the harbor and drowned himself. He had waged a long battle with depression and his mother had commit suicide. His body did not resurface until March 9.
Yesterday’s Quiz: How do you wear a Baldric? (hint: Victorian men’s couture )
Answer: A Baldric is a type of sash that is worn either around the waist, or diagonally across the chest. It used to be used to hold a sword or pistols, but by the XIX Century was used for ceremonial purposes.