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April 22,2011 fri.
April 22nd, 2011

Quiz: What do these men have in common? John F. Kennedy, J.R.R. Tolkein, Ambrose Bierce, Robert Graves, John McCain

Yesterday’s Question answered below: We know about Monty Python’s, but what was the original flying circus?
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History for 4/22/2011
Birthdays: Queen Isabella I of Castille, Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, Immanuel Kant, Madame De Stael , Alexander Kerensky, Arron Spelling, Eddie Albert, Glen Cambell, Betty Page, Marylin Chambers, Charlie Mingus, Peter Frampton, John Waters, Jack Nicholson is 74

For Christians this is Good Friday.

Happy Earth Day (see below- 1970)

753 B.C.-Founding of Rome by Romulus and Remus. The Romans counted time from this foundation date. So A.D. 1 to them was 754 AUC or Anno Urbis Conditae- from the "Founding of the City". So this year 2011 is 2,765 AUC.

1370-Beginning of construction on the castle/prison in Paris called La Bastille.

1741- Georg Frederich Handel dipped his quill into ink and began to write the Messiah.

1769- Madame DuBarry officially presented at the French Court. King Louis XV’s earlier mistresses like Madame La Pompadour were women of breeding and culture. But DuBarry was a saucy little trollop who had already schtupped most of the men of the court. When the Duc d’ Richelieu asked Louis what he saw in this vulgar new toy His Majesty replied:" She makes me forget that I shall soon be sixty."

1778- THE CONWAY CABAL- During the American Revolution, a conspiracy (or cabal) of colonial officers led by a Major Conway, and former Washington aide Thomas Mifflin plotted behind George Washington's back to get Congress to replace him for incompetence. Their choice for command of the American army was General Gage, who's career was undistinguished other than the Battle of Saratoga. The plot was exposed and Conway made to resign. Washington stayed the symbol of the American war effort even though he lost more battles than won.

1793- THE UNITED STATES DECLARED IT'S NEUTRALITY IN THE NAPOLEONIC WARS. This decision caused the split in American opinion that formed our two party system and soured the last years of George Washington’s presidency. The France that helped us win the Revolution was Louis XVI's Royal France, but she had now become a people’s republic like ours, so far the only other in the world. The French Revolutionary Convention had a Stars and Stripes flag hanging proudly in it's hall. Americans danced in the streets when the Bastille fell and started calling each other "citizen".

The common people and Thomas Jefferson’s followers felt we owed it to France to support a fellow people’s republic against the European autocrats. The more conservative Federalists like Alexander Hamilton and John Adams were afraid of guillotines and anarchy and openly wanted Mother Britain to win. Jefferson called them Monocrats, they called his side Democrats. Europeans tried to push America into choosing a side: America almost declared war on France in 1797,1804 and 1808, and almost declared war on Britain in 1800 and finally did in 1812. Napoleon had hoped America would then send over her navy to ferry his army across the Channel to get at England. Small wonder George Washington’s advice upon retiring was "Avoid entangling foreign alliances."

1811- Last of the Parthenon Marbles pried off their walls in Greece and sent back to England on a British frigate. Lord Byron was on board and called Lord Elgin, the supervisor of this act, "The Spoiler". Today the Elgin marbles are still at the British Museum and the Greeks are still mad about it.

1876- Composer Peter Tschaikowsky completed his score for the ballet Swan Lake.

1889-At noon on the signal of a cannon shot The Great Oklahoma Land Rush began. The town of Oklahoma City was set up in one day-population 10,000. The settlers who slipped in early were nicknamed Sooners and Oklahoma became known as the Sooner State. This eats up the remains of the land of the Cherokee Nation, who once owned all of Georgia, the Carolinas and Alabama. The Cherokee kept their land in common, which to U.S. Senator Henry Cabot Lodge was their downfall: "The Cherokee possess many attributes except Greed, which we all know is the basis for Civilization."

1898- Teddy Roosevelt formed the First US Volunteer Cavalry, called the Rough Riders. It was a curious mix of Teddys' personal tastes- Harvard bluebloods and polo champions mixed with rough western cowboys and rodeo stars.

1906- In earthquake destroyed San Francisco, one day after the last of the fires were declared officially out, the Market Street cable car began running once more.

1915- Second Battle of Ypres- First use of poison gas on Western front battlefields. German Jewish Dr. Fritz Hauber and friend of Albert Einstein, was convinced his experiments to create poison gas would win wars. He ran from battlefield to battlefield ensuring it was being used correctly. At this time his wife committed suicide. The Chlorine clouds did cause a huge panic in the British ranks, that opened the way to Paris, but the German generals were too cautious to follow up their surprise and the Canadians fought fiercely to close the gap. Although they had no gas masks, a quick thinking Canadian doctor ordered his men to urinate into their own handkerchiefs, then tie it around their faces. Although exceedingly gross, the ammonia counteracted the gas enabling them to fight on.

1916- THE IRISH EASTER SUNDAY UPRISING -Patrick Pearse, Richard Connolly, Michael Collins, Eamon De Valera and followers seize the O'Connell Street post office in downtown Dublin and proclaim the Irish Republic. After furious streetbattles with British troops diverted from the World War I battlefields, the rebellion is put down. All the ringleaders were executed. Connolly was so badly wounded that they had to prop up his stretcher before the firing squad, and pinch his cheeks so he'd be awake for his death. Eamon De Valera used his U.S. citizenship to avoid execution. Initially the Irish people hadn't wholly supported the futile rising, but the fierce police crackdown had the effect of arousing sympathy. It sparked the major IRA campaigns in the 1920's and eventual Independence.

1922- Albert the Duke of York married Scottish socialite Lady Elizabeth Beaux-Lyons. Bertie was shy and had a speech impediment and it took him three proposals before she said yes. The Archbishop of Canterbury refused to allow a live radio broadcast of the marriage ceremony for fear it would be broadcast in pubs, where uncouth men would not doff their hats.

What Bertie and Elizabeth couldn’t know would be in 1936 Berties older brother Edward VIII would abdicate and they become King George VI and Queen Elizabeth. After her husband died in 1952 and her daughter Elizabeth II ascended the throne, the Queen Mum lived on, dying at age 101 in 2002.

1934- In Little Bohemia Hunting Lodge in Wisconsin Public Enemy No.1 John Dillinger shot his way out of a FBI ambush. The FBI not only failed to stop Dillinger, they shot an innocent bystander who got caught in the crossfire.

1940- Writer Ernest Hemingway cabled his editor Max Perkins from Havana about a new novel he was writing.-" Title is "For Whom the Bell Tolls" from passage John Donne Oxford Book of English bottom page seventy one STOP Please register immediately."

1945- While the Red Army was attacking the outskirts of Berlin, Adolph Hitler sent away to the south his personal belongings and files in a final Luftwaffe flight of ten planes. One plane was shot down carried some of his most private possessions. Hitler called it a catastrophe. What was in that plane that he valued so much? See April 24th about the infamous Hitler Diary 1983 hoax. It’s a mystery to this day.

1952- The first nuclear bomb test shown on network TV -Tommy Turtle says duck and cover!

1954- THE ARMY–McCARTHY HEARINGS on live nationwide TV began. Senator Joe McCarthy’s Senate committee chasing communists finally bit off more than it could chew when it took on the U.S. Army. Sparked by the drafting of Private G. David Shine, a young crony (and possibly lover ) of chief counsel Roy Cohn, a hearing was held to investigate charges that the Army Secretary and several other top Pentagon officers were Russian spies.

The hearing soon devolved from an indictment of the army into a probe of Senator McCarthy’s red baiting tactics. It lasted for three months and held the nation spellbound. At one point Senator McCarthy submitted a note that the television cameras be turned off for a minute so he could wipe his nose. After one heated session, Roy Cohn and Robert Kennedy had to be separated before a fistfight broke out. Finally under the withering condemnation of Joseph Walsh "Senator, have you no shred of decency?!" McCarthy’s power was broken.

1954- The U.S. Congress added the phrase "In God We Trust" on to US currency

1970- The first Earth Day. The idea was started by Senator Gaylord Nelson as a Teach-In to bring attention to environmental issues.

1972- Magnavox announced the Magnavox Odyssey, the first home videogame console.

1978- Comic actors Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi debut two new characters on the Saturday Night Live TV show, Joliet Jake and Ellwood Blues. The Blues Brothers are born.

1996- Christopher Robin Milne dies at age 75. The young boy who’s fascination with a bear in the London Zoo called Winnie inspired his father A.A. Milne to write the Winne the Pooh stories. Christopher Robin wasn’t always appreciative of all the attention. He said of his father: "Someday I’ll write some verses about him and see how He likes it!"

2000- The estranged wife of Mr Juan Gonzales of Cuba had grabbed their son Elian and tried to escape by boat to the United States. The wife and her lover drowned in the attempt but little 6 year old Elian survived and became a cause–celebre of the Cuban exile community in Miami. But Mr. Gonzales had come from Havanna to get his son back. Back in Havana, Fidel Castro had a ball making political hay out of the Yankee Imperialistas stealing children from their parents.

Finally, after months of media circus, Attorney General Janet Reno ordered federal marshals to forcibly grab Elian Gonzales from his uncles home and give him back to his father. His father pledged:" I want no one to ever stick a camera in my son’s face again!"

2004- Pat Tillman was a football star who was moved by the 9-11 attacks to sacrifice a lucrative career in the NFL to fight for his country. This day Tillman was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan. The Pentagon played up his heroism, while lying to his grieving family and burning his diary.
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Yesterday’s Quiz: We know about Monty Python’s, but what was the original flying circus?

Answer: During World War I, fighter planes were being painted camouflage to shield them from the enemy. By contrast, top German Ace Baron von Richtofen, the Red Baron, had his squadron paint their planes in bright gaudy colors to show their contempt for the enemy. He flew an all red triplane. People dubbed his squadron The Flying Circus.


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