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January 28, 2015 wed
January 28th, 2015

Quiz: What political group cherishes the name of an old fishing tub called The Granma?

Yesterday’s quiz answered below: What was Lenin’s first name?
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History for 1/28/2015
Birthdays: King Henry VII Tudor, Jose Marti, Colette, Jackson Pollack, Claus Oldenburg, Arthur Rubenstein, Ernst Lubitsch, Connie Rasinski, Susan Sontag, Barbie Benton, General George Pickett, William Burroughs (1855) the inventor of the calculator, Mo Rocca, Alan Alda is 79, Elijah Wood is 35

1393- DANSE MACABRE- At a masquerade ball given at the French court King Charles VI 'the mad' and several of his closest friends dressed up as 'wild men' to amuse the court. They had fur and hair attached to their bodies with tar.
While everyone was enjoying the capering of these strange anonymous creatures, a torch touched their tar covered bodies and the group exploded into flame. While the court watched these beings writhe in agony, The Duchess de Berry screamed" Oh My God! That's the King!" King Charles was saved when that same duchess smothered his flames in her skirts. Another duke saved himself by diving headlong into a vat of Beaujolais, but the others roasted to death.

The common people weren't sympathetic. One duke liked to step on your neck while sneering 'Down Peasant!". As his barbecued remains were carried through Paris, people laughed and sang and chanted 'Down Monseignieur!" Edgar Allen Poe wrote a poem called “Hop Frog” about the incident. Roger Corman put it into his 1964 film- Masque of the Red Death.

1547- English Henry VIII died, leaving his ten year-old sickly-son Edward VI "Gods Imp" king. He was 55 years old but his hard living had aged him early. Increasingly suspicious of all around him as he aged, one of his last acts was to have the Earl of Surrey beheaded for changing the coat of arms of his father the Duke of York into something more like a Royal Heir-Apparent. The Duke was also scheduled to be executed but was saved when the king died first.

1596- Sir Francis Drake died at sea off the coast of Nicaragua while trying to mount one more big raid on the Spanish Main. The Devonshire preacher's son had raided there as a young man. But by now, the Spaniards had learned his tricks so they were prepared. The trip was a failure and he died on deck of yellow fever in late middle age.

1782- The Congress called for the use of the Great Seal of the United States, even though no one had designed one yet. But the British had one and so..uh,we had to have one too !

1829- BURKE & HARE- In the early nineteenth century scientific experiments on cadavers were still outlawed as desecration of the dead so doctors secretly hired grave robbers to get them specimens to experiment on. Burke & Hare were the most infamous of Edinburgh's "ressurrectionists" because they didn't always wait for the subject to die, but murdered them in their boardinghouse. To Burke someone became slang for suffocating them. Doctors and later police became suspicious of the freshness of their specimens and Hare finked on Burke to save himself.
On this day Burke was hanged before a crowd of thousands and his body later medically dissected. The notoriety of this case helped pass laws allowing doctors more legal use of mortal remains. Their story was the inspiration for Robert Louis Stevenson's story "The Body Snatcher."

1863- Ulysses Grant arrived at Vicksburg to begin the epic campaign that would end on July 4th with the capture of the 'Gibraltar of the Confederacy'.

1878- First commercial telephone switchboard.

1884- A British relief force reached the city of Khartoum just two days too late. After a one year siege the Sudanese Dervishes had sacked the city and massacred all the foreigners including General Chinese Gordon, dancing with their heads on spears. The desert relief force was held up until all their supplies were complete, including 20,000 black umbrellas.

1902- Andrew Carnegie was a rough crude tycoon with a ruthless streak that saw him ruin his competitors and pay vigilantes to murder his striking employees and their families. But after all the rough and tumble of the Gilded Age business world, he showed a new side of his character in retirement. He set up the Carnegie Institute in Washington and resolved to give away the bulk of his $350 million dollar fortune in philanthropic causes. The reason why so many colleges, hospitals and concert halls in America today are named Carnegie. “A man who dies rich dies disgraced!”

1915- The U.S. Coast Guard born, combining the Lifesaving Service and the Revenue Cutter patrol. In 2002 the Coast Guard was folded into the Cabinet office Department of Homeland Security.

1916- President Woodrow Wilson nominated Judge Lewis Brandeis to the Supreme Court. Brandeis was the first Jewish American to be so honored.

1917- After 11 months fruitlessly chasing Pancho Villa through Mexico and skirmishing with the Mexican army, Pres. Wilson ordered General John Pershing’s army home.

1918- In Germany a million industrial workers fed up with the endless carnage of World War One went on strike, paralyzing factories nationwide.

1926- Composer Kurt Weill married his Pirate Jenny- Lotte Lenya.

1930- Warner Brothers Cartoons Born. Leon Schlesinger, the head of Pacific Art and Title, signed a deal with several unemployed Disney animators who had left Walt to form their own studio to draw Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, but had been stiffed by their contacts. Schlesinger had connections with the Warner Bros. since he helped them get funding for the 'Jazz Singer'. They create Leon Schlesinger's Studio Looney Tunes, in imitation of Disney's Silly Symphonies. Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig and more result.

1949- The Admiral Broadway Review premiered on television. The one and a half hour comedy review starred Sid Caesar and Imogene Coca. The show was so popular Admiral was swamped for orders for new televisions and ironically was forced to cancel the show to focus on their production needs. The show was revived as Your Show of Shows, one of the great shows of early television.

1956- Young singer Elvis Presley first appeared to television audiences on the Dorsey Brothers Stage Show.

1958- Brooklyn Dodger catcher Roy Campanella paralyzed in an auto wreck. He spent the rest of his life as a spokesman for the rights of the handicapped.

1978- Premiere of Hanna Barbera's the Three Robonic Stooges.

1982- Danny DeVito married Rhea Perlman.

1986- THE CHALLENGER DISASTER- As the world watched the Space shuttle Challenger exploded 74 seconds after takeoff killing all twelve crew members. They included New Hampshire schoolteacher Christie McAuliffe who had won the space ride in a contest. It was blamed on defective O-rings in the rocket booster.

2003- President George W. Bush in his State of the Union address says that he had proof that Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein had sent agents to the African nation of Niger to buy uranium yellowcake, a component to make atomic bombs. It is one of the major excuses for the war with Iraq. It was later proved to be a complete lie. Bush blamed the intelligence service, after giving the head of the CIA George Tenent the Medal of Freedom. When special CIA envoy Joseph Wilson, who knew Niger, tried to point out the falsehood, the Bush WhiteHouse destroyed his career and outed the cover of his CIA wife, Valerie Plame. She had been working on the Iranian Nuclear program.
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Yesterday’s Question: What was Lenin’s first name?

Answered: He had no first name. He was born Vladimir Ulyanov, so some called him Vladimir Lenin. But he signed his name N. Lenin, so some called him Nickolai Lenin. When asked what N stood for, he replied “nietzsto- nothing”.


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