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Nov 24, 2016 Thanksgiving
November 24th, 2016

Question: Tippicanoe and Tyler Too! What does that mean?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: What does it mean when someone is called your Sherpa? As in your legal Sherpa or your medical Sherpa?
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HISTORY FOR 11/24/2016
Birthdays: Spinoza, Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, Scott Joplin, Zachary Taylor, Carrie Nation, Dick Powell, Garson Kanin, Cass Gilbert-the architect of the first skyscraper, Alvan Barkley-Truman’s VP, William F. Buckley, John Lindsay, Dale Carnegie- author of How to Win Friends and Influence People, Steve Yeager, Denise Crosby, Billy Connolly is 74

HAPPY U.S. THANKSGIVING !- Since the earliest recorded times societies have had harvest festivals to give thanks to the appropriate deities that they're not going to starve that winter. A letter written in 1621 by pilgrim Edward Winslow described how Pilgrim Gov. Bradford and Miles Standish invited Massacoit and his Wampanoag Indians to a feast to celebrate their first successful harvest. The custom of Thanksgiving was a New England custom for decades thereafter. A few years later the New Englanders exterminated these same Indians and stuck the head of Massacoits son King Phillip on a post. In 1789 George Washington had called for a thanksgiving celebration in late November to celebrate the new Constitution. But Pres. Thomas Jefferson thought Thanksgiving ” was the most ridiculous idea” he ever heard. He considered it a violation of the separation of church and state, as did Andy Jackson and Zachary Taylor. So the holiday didn’t really become an annual custom until the Civil War. Sarah Hale the editor of the Ladies Magazine, the Martha Stewart of her time, had been lobbying the US Government to make the New England tradition a national one.

In 1863 after the great union victory at Gettysburg, President Lincoln issued a decree that the last Thursday of November be set aside as a feast of national Thanksgiving. As blue clad troops chowed down on their turkey and chicken dinners, the Confederates withheld their fire in honor of the new Yankee holiday. To this day Thanksgiving is still declared by Presidential decree.
In 1940 President Roosevelt tried to move Thanksgiving earlier in the month to help Depression-wracked business by spurring early Christmas shopping, but people were used to it where it was. So enjoy. Happy Thanksgiving.


800 AD- Charlemagne or Charles the Great, the King of the Franks (France), arrived in Rome to spend the Christmas season with his old pal Pope Leo III. At the Christmas service, Pope Leo would crown him Emperor.

1221- The Mongol horde of Genghis Khan destroyed the Persian army of Shah Jellaladin in the Indus Valley in present northwestern Pakistan.

1326- Hugh Despenser the Younger, onetime gay lover of King Edward II, was executed by order of Eddie’s wife Queen Isabella the She-Wolf of France. She had his penis and testicles amputated and burned in front of him as he hanged.

1681- YOU UGLY MUG! The Earl of Shaftesbury acquitted of treason. In the restoration politics of King Charles II’s England the Earl was frequently in opposition to the Kings policy. He started the first political party in loyal opposition, the Green Ribbon Club, later the Whig Party. This was a new idea. Before this, disagreeing openly with the Crown was considered treason. But now after the English Civil War and the Restoration, open political debate was considered acceptable.

Politics at the time was discussed in coffee houses on Fleet St. where only wealthy gentry could afford to dally over a cup of rare Java or hot cocoa imported from the Americas. And Charles II ‘s queen Catherine of Braganza introduced Tea drinking. The Earl of Shaftesbury’s face was printed on coffee mugs by his partisans, as were other images of leading politicians. This is when the word mug also came to mean a face:” I don’t like your mug!”

1688- English King James II was facing an invasion led by his own daughter Mary and his son-in-law William of Orange. In the middle of the night the commander of the royal army, the Duke of Marlborough, and all 40 of his top generals deserted and rode over to the rebel camp. Next morning the King awoke to find his entire army had run away!
Even James other daughter Anne went to the rebel side. These defections meant that the Glorious Revolution of 1688 would be bloodless and not a repeat of the devastating Civil War of 1642-49.

1789- The first issue of France’s national newspaper Le Moniteur.

1832- THE NULLIFIERS- A controversy had been brewing since the U.S. Constitution was adapted whether the individual states or federal government had the final say on a law. Southern states in particular declared they had the right to “nullify” Federal laws they didn’t agree with. This day South Carolina refused to pay a new tariff imposed by Washington. President Andy Jackson, also a southerner, angrily ordered the army to mobilize. But the crisis was averted by a compromise the following spring. The issue continued to plague U.S. politics until it was settled by the Civil War thirty years later.

1859- Charles Darwin published the Origin of the Species.

1863- THE BATTLE ABOVE THE CLOUDS or Missionary Ridge. Gen. Grant's army had to break through a Confederate Army dug in on a mountaintop above Chattanooga, Tennessee. At first it was the 24th Wisconsin Infantry that was ordered to take the rifle pits at the base of Missionary Ridge. This was intended as a diversion to the two flanking attacks occurring at the same time. When the Wisconsin soldiers swept the pits, they confused their orders and just continued the assault. They felt stopping for cover or retreating on the bare mountain slope was more suicidal than attacking. More units joined in the mad scramble up the summit and soon the mistake became an unauthorized general assault that blew the rebel army off the mountaintop.

Grant had a great, if unplanned for victory. The first soldier to plant the U.S. flag on the summit was Lt. Arthur MacArthur, the father of World War II hero General Douglas MacArthur. Lt. Arthur MacArthur took the Wisconsin regimental flag after the rest of the officers had been killed and led the charge up the slope, for which he was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. How did Lt. MacArthur inspire his men? He kept yelling "On Wisconsin!" This tradition inspired the Wisconsin football fight song "On Wisconsin" still sung to this day and perennially voted one of the five best fight songs in college football..
For some reason, the Wisconsin assault on Missionary Ridge was the subject of a crayon/pastel painting by a young recruit of the 101st Airborne Division. The painting is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio. The artist? Jimmy Hendrix.

1871- The National Rifle Association formed.

1874- Cacaobao, the high chief of the Cannibal Isles (modern Fiji) submits his people to the British Empire. He figured they were gonna get it anyway. He sends Queen Victoria his personal war club as a symbol.

1874- Joseph Glidden received a patent for barbed wire, which made it possible to fence in the Great Plains for farming. In 1899 in the Boer War it was the white South African Boers who first came up with the idea of using barbed wire to slow down enemy infantry.

1904- Alfred Steiglitz and Edward Steichen opened 291, the first art gallery dedicated exclusively to the art of photography.

1909- THE UPRISING OF THE TWENTY THOUSAND. Mary 'Mother' Jones led three fifths of the immigrant garment workers of New York out on strike to demand better conditions and recognition of their union, the ILGWU. Several Golden 400 socialites would meet the strikers at the old Water Tower in Greenwich Village to dispense food and day care. One of them was Betsy Morgan, the youngest daughter of J.P. Morgan, who was also involved in a lesbian affair with designer Elzie DeWolfe.

1922- Irish writer Erskine Childers was the writer of the Riddle of the Sands, one of the first true spy novels, but he was also a leader of the IRA and after Irelands Treaty with Britain he sided with Eamon de Valera and the anti-treaty rebels in the Irish Civil War. This day Erskine Childers was executed by an Irish Army firing squad. His son became President of Ireland in 1973.

1933- The RKO movie Flying Down to Rio opened, originally as a starring vehicle for Dolores Del Rio, but what we remember is it is the first pairing of the famous dance team of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.

1937- The Andrew Sisters record their Boogie-Woogie version of “Bei Mir Bist Du Schon”, an old Yiddish song that was updated by Bennie Goodman.

1938- LENI DOES TINSELTOWN -Hitler's top filmmaker Leni Reifenstahl arrived in Hollywood to meet the film community and show off her new documentary 'Olympia". Nazis charges de’ affaires in L.A. Gerhard Gyssling had bragged to the press that all Hollywood was dying to meet Germany’s top film artist. But Hollywood had different ideas. Paramount, Warner Bros., Columbia, Fox and Goldwyn refused to speak to her and picketers hounded her every step. Well known Conservatives like Louis B. Mayer and Gary Cooper were polite but begged off the bad publicity.

The only studio heads who would meet Leni Reifenstahl were Hal Roach and Walt Disney. Uncle Walt gave her a tour of the studio but begged off running her film, saying the union projectionist would make trouble. ( uh-huh....) Years later Disney said he didn't really know who she was. ( uh-huh......) Leni told LA historian Robert Nudleman years later that she thought Walt met her because his professional curiosity got the better of him. That he wanted to see Olympia, because it was the only film to beat his Snow White at the Venice Film Festival, then the world’s most prestigious.

1941- After suffering a strike and declining revenue because of the war in Europe, Walt Disney’s studio was in trouble. Animator Ward Kimball noted in his diary for this day: “ 100 layoffs announced. Studio personnel from 1600 down to a Hyperion level of 300. Geez, It this the writing on the wall?” Disney saved itself with doing training films for the Army, and after limping through the 1940’s, with Cinderella was back on top.

1947- THE HOLLYWOOD BLACKLIST- 50 Hollywood moguls like Harry Cohn, Jack Warner and Dori Charey meet at the Waldorf Astoria in New York to formulate a group response to the House UnAmerican Activities Committee anti-commie hearings that were targeting Hollywood. Besides the heat from the feds their stockholders were clamoring for them to get the Reds out! They agreed to enforce an industry-wide blacklisting of anyone refusing to cooperate with the HUAC Committee. Nothing was ever officially written down or published, if you were blacklisted you suddenly were unable to find any work.

Eric Johnston, spokesman for the Motion Pictures Assoc. said on this day: "As long as I live, I will never be party ot anything as unAmerican as a blacklist!”.
Two days later on Nov. 26th he said: " We will forthwith discharge and never again knowingly employ a Communist. Loyalty oaths for the Entertainment Industry are now compulsory." Many Hollywood artists signed Communist Party cards in the 1930's when it was chic' to be lefty and the Communists were the only open opponents of segregation and Hitler. Writer Bud Schulberg’s excuse was CP parties had the prettiest girls. Out of an estimated 15,000 entertainment workers only around 300 were ever actually proven to be Communists. Famous blacklist victims included Zero Mostel, Lillian Hellman, Lloyd Bridges, Dashell Hammett, Gale Sondergaard, Edward G. Robinson, Sterling Hayden & Dalton Trumbo. Sidney Poitier was blacklisted for no other reason than he was friends with black activist-actor Canada Lee; 'Somewhere over the Rainbow' composer Yip Harburg was blacklisted for writing a song: 'You Gotta Friend Named Joe" which the committee took to mean Russian dictator Josef Stalin.

1948- Hib Johnson, the President of Johnson's Wax had just moved into a home designed for him by the legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Called Wingspread, it was considered the culmination of Wrights prairie style. But there was a problem. Johnson called Frank Lloyd Wright to complain that the roof was leaking rainwater onto his Thanksgiving dinner! The water was leaking right on Hib's head as he sat at the head of the table. He refused to budge, had the phone cord stretched so he could make the
call, and spoke to Wright with the drops splashing off his bald head. What was Frank Lloyd Wright’s response? " So move your table..."

1950- Gen. Douglas MacArthur announced his "Home by Christmas Offensive" to finish off the North Korean army and end the Korean War. The following day he was attacked by 180,000 Red Chinese. MacArthur was fired and the war dragged on until 1953.

1950- The musical Guys & Dolls opened. “ I got da horse right here, his name is Paul Revere, I know a jock who tells me Never Fear, Can Do- Can Do..The Jock sez da horse can –do ”

1958- The musical film Gigi opened, music by Lerner & Lowe. Based on the writings of French author Collette, Collette herself had insisted young unknown Dutch actress Audrey Hepburn play the lead.

1963- To complete the surreal drama that shocked America into the Sixties, JFK assassin Lee Harvey Oswald was shot on nationwide T.V. by smalltime gangster Jack Ruby. He was taken to the same hospital and had the same doctors as Kennedy but still died. Ruby, real name Jacob Rubenstein, always hung around the Dallas police station, so no one thought it was unusual to see him around.

1968- Hey Jude by the Beatles topped the pop charts while Tammy Wynette’s Stand By Your Man headed the Country & Western listing.

1991- Freddy Mercury, lead singer of the rock group Queen, died of HIV/AIDS.

1998- America On Line bought their chief competitor Netscape.

1999- Pixars Toy Story 2. in theaters.

2000- Catherine Zeta-Jones married Michael Douglas.

2010- Disney’s Tangled released.
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Yesterday’s Question: What does it mean when someone is called your Sherpa? As in your legal Sherpa or your medical Sherpa?

Answer: A Sherpa is a member of a Himalayan tribe that specialize in guiding people up and down Mt Everest. So a Sherpa has come to mean someone who guides you in unfamiliar territory.


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