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May 10, 2019
May 10th, 2019

Quiz: What American publication was nicknamed The Grey Lady?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: What media network is known in ShowBiz slang as “ The Eye”.
History for 5/10/2019
Birthdays: Fred Astaire, Phil Silvers, Nancy Walker, French royal minister Turgot, Marshal Jean Lannes, Marshal Nicolas Davout, John Wilkes Booth (assassin of Lincoln) Mark David Chapman (assassin of John Lennon), David O. Selznick, Mother Maybelle Carter, Ariel Durant, Jim Abrahams, Nancy Walker, Donovan, Homer Simpson, Gen. Lasalle*, Bono, Kenan Thompson is 41, Paige O’Hara the voice of Belle in Beauty & the Beast.

(*Lasalle was the dashing French cavalry leader who said " Tout hussard qui n'est pas mort à 30 ans est un jean-foutre!-Any hussar who's not dead by 30 is a coward!" In 1813, while leading an attack, he was shot through the head. He was 34.)

1650- The British take Jamaica from the Spanish. At this time Britons were discovering the delights of a new condiment made on that island- sugar!

1726- Philosopher Francois Voltaire visited England.

1748- English slave trader John Newton’s ship was caught in a violent Mid Atlantic storm and was about to go under. When Newton prayed to God he would reform his life if he made it through this gale, the storm broke. Newton not only stopped his slave trading ways but he wrote a hymn, Amazing Grace. "Amazing Grace, How Great Thou Art, to Save a Wretch Like Me! I was lost, but now I’m found, etc."

1774- King Louis XV of France died. Before he died he muttered "apres moi, le deluge.." after me, the deluge. His grandson the Duke du Berry became King Louis XVI. He was the king guillotined in the Revolution.

1775- FT. TICONDEROGA- Benedict Arnold and Ethan Allen surprise the upstate NY fortress in the dead of night and captured the cannon George Washington needed to drive the British out of Boston. 20 years earlier the British took huge losses taking that same fort from the French. All the British commander lost this time was his trousers, he was captured in his nightshirt. As Allen and Arnold woke him he scowled: "By who's authority do you do this?" Allen retorted: " In the name of Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress!"

1796- THE BATTLE OF LODI- The Austrian Army in Italy attempted to slow Napoleons pursuit of them by blocking a bridge with 14 cannon and daring the French to cross. This is where the beginning of Napoleons legend among his men starts to form. He whips up the confidence of his men to the point where they enthusiastically rush across the bridge and overrun the cannon. Even though Napoleon is the army’s commander he is out in front sharing the danger from shot and shell sighting his cannon like a corporal. This is when men start to call him "The Little Corporal". He later told a friend’ They haven’t seen anything yet." An older general said:" You know, that little bastard scares me."

1815- Before any of the armies marched to Waterloo, Napoleon’s police minister and cousin Nicolas Fouche’ sneaked copies of all his battle plans to Wellington in Brussels. After Napoleon’s defeat this little act of treachery got Fouche’ a plum job in the post war Royal French Government.

1837-THE SEPOY REBELLION- Indian troops serving in the British army go on a rampage after they learn that their new rifle cartridges are greased with tallow made from pig and beef fat. To load your gun you had to bite the paper at the end of the cartridge, in effect tasting the fat, which is forbidden by the Hindu and Moslem religions. The Sepoy's thought it was a British trick to rob their souls and make them Christians. The British army withdrew the offending cartridges when they learned of the mistake but it was too late. The mutinying Indian soldiers were soon joined by the Hindu Maharratas and Moslem Moghul sultan. It became the biggest armed revolt ever in the history of British India.

1837- The Wall Street Panic of 1837 began a seven year depression. The militia was called in to restore peace on Wall Street.

1861- First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln decided the White House looked like a dump and went off to New York to buy new furnishings. She was heavily criticized for her lavish spending during such dark days for the country, but her habit of dealing with stress was to go shopping. She learned from a White House long timer how to pad and hide expenses in credit statements so her husband wouldn’t find out. She once bought 300 pairs of gloves, some which she never opened from the boxes. When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Go Shopping!

1863- Confederate General Thomas Stonewall Jackson died of his wounds after being shot by his own men in an accident during the Battle of Chancellorsville. His last words were" Lets us cross over the bridge and rest under the shade of the trees." Years after the Civil War ended Robert E. Lee once meditated on his big loss at Gettysburg: " If Jackson had been there we would not have lost Gettysburg."

1865- One month after Richmond fell and Lee surrendered, Confederate President Jefferson Davis and the remains of his government were arrested by U.S. cavalry while on the run in Georgia. One version says Davis was wearing a dress, and the first lady tried to pass him off to the Yankees as her mother.
An enduring mystery is the fate of the Confederate Gold Reserve. While the rebel government was on the run after the fall of Richmond, several wagons in their train were carrying nine million dollars in gold bullion. Around Darien Georgia the wagons disappeared from history...

1865- QUANTRILL FELL- William Clark Quantrill was a Confederate guerilla who was so brutal and uncontrollable that the Richmond government refused to admit he was ever in their army. Quantrill’s Raiders raised hell across Missouri and Kansas. One month after Lee surrendered to Grant, he was operating under an alias in Kentucky. Union authorities enlisted a vigilante posse led by Capt. Edmund Tyrell to kill him. Tyrell was as lawless as Quantrill, but he got the desired result.
In an ambush near Louisville, Quantrill was brought down in a hail of bullets. He lingered with a broken spine for a month before expiring. He was 27. On his deathbed he converted to Catholicism and left all his money to his mistress. The priest officiating at the burial encouraged people to strew garbage and defecate on his grave. Some of Quantrill’s junior soldiers went on to have even more famous careers: outlaws Jesse & Frank James, Cole & Bob Younger.

1868- Women's Rights advocate Victoria Woodhull declared she was a candidate for President of the United States, with black activist Frederick Douglas as her running mate. Advocate of Free Love, Socialism and Spiritualism, Mrs. Woodhull had to campaign from jail where she was placed for distribution of pornography. She not as well remembered as Susan B. Anthony or Elizabeth Cady-Stanton because the main women’s rights movement distanced themselves from her perceived outlandish opinions.

1869- THE GOLDEN SPIKE- At Promontory Utah the Union Pacific and the Southern Pacific met, finally connecting the entire U.S. continent by rail. Before this when you wanted to go from New York to San Francisco you had to take a boat to Havana, then Nicaragua, take a mule train through jungle then get a third ship up the Pacific coast to California. The millionaire directors of the Union Pacific and Central Pacific came to Utah for the ceremony. The racing rail gangs had actually passed each other and had to correct a detour of 250 miles.

When the rich men were called upon to swing the large sledgehammers to drive in the golden spike both missed and hit the ground -one had a hangover. A workman had to actually accomplish the deed. The link completed an electric circuit to send telegraph news of the event simultaneously to New York and San Francisco. They celebrated by the synchronized firing of cannon east over the Atlantic and west out over the Pacific, symbolically telling the world to watch out! That America was now a continental power that has got its act together.

1869- CREDIT MOBILIER SCANDAL- The stock company that handled the transcontinental railroad's budgets, Credit Mobilier, billed the government $175 million dollars for the job when it actually only cost $86 million. When the figures were disputed gov't officials were given bribes to keep quiet.

When the scandal finally broke in 1872 many of Republican Pres. Grant's top officials were implicated. When Vice President Schuyler Colfax was asked about a deposit slip for $10,000 marked the same day as a Credit Mobilier payroll slip made out for the same amount, he remarked it was a political donation from a benefactor whose name he couldn't remember who died shortly after anyway. He said the check fell out of his morning newspaper at breakfast.

1885- Geronimo goes on the warpath. For the next 15 months he holds off 5,000 U.S. troops with just 16 Apache warriors, 12 women and 6 children.

1893- The U.S. government declares the Tomato officially a vegetable and not a fruit.

1908- The First Mother's Day celebrated, it became a national holiday in 1914. The holiday was inspiration of a lady named Anna Jarvis, who spent the rest of her life trying to keep it from being commercially exploited. She died broke, and surrounded by mothers day cards sent from well wishers.

1908- An article in the New York Times advised women to wash their hair every two weeks. The norm for women then was shampooing every three months!

1924- J. Edgar Hoover given control of F.B.I.- Hoover was the third director of what was up until then a small powerless division of the treasury dept that wasn't even allowed to carry guns until the late 1920's. He built up and dominated the bureau until 1972.

1928- General Electric starts up WG4 Schenectady, the first T.V. Station.

1929- Yankee slugger Babe Ruth signs new contract that paid him more money than President Herbert Hoover. Babe replied, "Well, I had a better year than he had.”

1929- Walt Disney’s animated short Skeleton Dance premiered. Animated mostly by Mickey Mouse designer Ub Iwerks, it marked the beginning of tightly done musical sync animation.

1933- Nazis Leader Josef Goebbels holds the first mass book-burning in Berlin. " We consign everything unGerman to the flames." 20,000 works by Thomas Mann, Hemingway, Dos Passos, Freud and Einstein are burned.

1940- THE BLITZKRIEG IN THE WEST BEGAN-Nazi Panzer tanks roll into Belgium and Holland in violation of their neutrality, beginning their massive offensive on Anglo-French forces. This ended the stalemate that existed for several months after the September declaration of war, nicknamed the 'Stitzkrieg', or 'sit-down war'. The French had spent millions building a complex system of underground mountain bunkers called the Maginot Line. The German tanks merely drove around them. Once flanked the bunkers discovered they couldn’t turn their guns around to shoot behind them.

1940- Old Kaiser Wilhelm was in exile in Holland since 1918. Today he refused to come home to Germany on Hitler's invitation, because he knew he'd be used for propaganda. He died peacefully that same year.

1940- British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigned. Winston Churchill took over as Prime Minister to deal with the war crisis. He told Britons "I have nothing to offer you but blood, toil, tears, and sweat." In the 1960’s, a rock band thought that was a great name for a band- Blood Sweat & Tears.

1941- THE STRANGE FLIGHT OF RUDOLPH HESS. Rudolph Hess was Adolf Hitler’s trusted right hand and one of the top Nazis in the German Reich. This day at the height of Nazis power, Hess piloted a Messerschmitt fighter, and flew alone to England. He claimed to be on a secret mission to reach Churchill and negotiate peace. Allied leaders refused to meet with him, and Hitler declared Hess had lost his mind. After the war, Hess was sentenced to life in prison at Spandau. To eyewitnesses at the Nuremberg trial he did indeed appear deranged. Historians have always speculated what the secret message Hess was carrying from Hitler to Churchill. In 1991 on the 50th anniversary, historians expected the secret files to at last be declassified, but the British government put them under a new top-secret seal for another 100 years.

1948- Just five days before declaring independence Jewish diplomat Golda Meir sneaked through Palestine dressed in an Arab woman’s hijab to have a secret meeting with King Abdallah of Jordan. Abdallah had no use for the Palestinian leaders and tacitly supported the Zionists, but as subjects to his plan for a greater Jordan. Now the other Arab nations were pressuring him to join them in a war against the new Jewish state.

1963- On the advice of George Harrison and Little Richard, Decca Records signed a new teen band called the Rolling Stones to a recording contract.

1972- Over the skies of Vietnam, Navy pilot Randy “Duke” Cunningham had dogfights with enemy planes. This day he shot down three Mig 21s, and he dueled and shot down the top North Vietnamese ace, nicknamed Colonel Toon. Duke Cunningham parlayed his fame into a career in politics. He became a conservative Republican congressman who built a notorious record of taking bribes. He accumulated Rolls Royces, mansions, and a yacht he named the Dukester. He actually circulated a price list for his vote. Eventually, Duke Cunningham went to prison for bribery.

1977- Joan Crawford died of cancer and a heart attack. Once the most beautiful woman in Hollywood, now a neglected old recluse. She was 74. Soon after her daughter Christine published the memoir Mommy Dearest, in which she alleged years of abuse and neglect.

1993- 188 young women died in a fire in a toy making factory near Bangkok, Thailand. They were locked into the building by their employer like the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire victims in 1911. They were making Bart Simpson dolls for America.

1994- Nelson Mandela inaugurated as first black president of South Africa.

1994- Former children’s party clown and serial killer John Wayne Gacy was executed by lethal injection. Police found 28 children buried around his house. His last words: "Kiss My Ass!"

1996- DEADLIEST DAY ON MOUNT EVEREST- One dozen mountain climbers with their veteran guides and Sherpa’s are caught on the summit by a hurricane-like blizzard. Pinned down by 100 mile an hour winds and a wind chill of one hundred degrees below zero. They soon run out of oxygen 29,800 feet above sea level. Eight die, two blindly walked off the South Escarpment and plunged 7,000 feet. Two had to have limbs amputated from frostbite. The group’s leader Rob Hall called his base camp on his cel phone. They connected him with his pregnant wife in New Zealand so he could say goodbye before dying. The climbers were doctors, lawyers and executives who paid $65,000 apiece, not counting airfare and Tibetan permits. Mount Everest would claim 11 more lives that spring.
Recently due to Global Warming, the retreating snows are revealing the old cadavers of climbers who disappeared decades ago.
Yesterday’s Question answered below: What media network is known in ShowBiz slang as “ The Eye”.

Answer: The CBS network. Creative director Bill Golden was inspired when he drove through Pennsylvania Dutch country. He became intrigued by the hex symbols resembling the human eye that were painted on Shaker barns.