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March 6, 2014 thurs
March 6th, 2014

Quiz: Who was the first British king to speak English?

Yesterday’s Question answered below: Which is NOT a opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart? a) Cosi Fan Tutti, b) Lucia di Lammermoor, c) La Nozzi di Figaro, d) Ideomeno, Prince of Crete.
History for 3/6/2014
Birthdays: Michaelangelo Buonnarotti, Cyrano De Bergerac, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Phil Sheridan, Lou Costello, Ivan Boesky, Ring Lardner, Gabriele Garcia-Marquez, Valentina Tereschkova the first woman in space, Tom Arnold, Kiri Te Kanawa, Rob Reiner is 67, Alan Greenspan, DC Mayor Marion Barry, Stephen Schwartz is 66, Ed McMahon, Shaquille O’Neal is 42

Today is the Feast Day of Saint Fridolin the Wanderer.

1521- Fernan de Magellan discovered the Pacific Island of Guam.

1554- The future King of Spain Phillip II married the Catholic Queen of England Mary Tudor long distance, by proxy. When Phillip came to England and realized Mary had waited to long to have children and was now too old and ill he sent emissaries to see if her half-sister Elizabeth was interested.

1834- The Ontario settlement of Fort York is incorporated as the new City of Toronto.

1836- THE ALAMO- The Mexican army of General Santa Anna overwhelmed a small garrison of rebellious Texans in an old mission.
The tragic stand of 189 men led by colorful frontiersmen like Davey Crockett and Jim Bowie against 5,000 troops has become part of American mythology. That they ignored Sam Houston's direct orders to blow up the mission and join his main army with their valuable cannon is forgotten. Apologists contend that if they didn’t stall, Santa Anna's army he would have swooped down on Washington-on-the-Brazos and squashed the Texas Rebellion while they were still quibbling over their constitution.

The attack began at 4:30 a.m. in the predawn darkness and was all over in 90 minutes, a little after 6 a.m.. Jim Bowie was bayoneted in his hospital bed. The notes of a Texas officer named Dolson who interviewed a Mexican officer named Sanchez after the battle were discovered in 1961. It revealed that maybe Davey Crockett didn't go down heroically using his rifle "Old Betsy" as a club- like in the movies, but tried to surrender. His wife was Mexican and he was a politician after all. Santa Anna had him and any surviving men shot. Sanchez wasn’t sure if it was Crockett. We'll never know for sure.

There were 16 Alamo survivors, the women and children and Colonel Travis' black servant Joe. Santa Anna made sure they were each given two pesos and a blanket and set free. The battle cry of Texans became Remember the Alamo!

1837- Col Travis black slave Joe fought on the barricades of the Alamo alongside his master. After the battle Joe was thanked for his services by being returned to Travis’ family in Alabama to remain a slave. On the one year anniversary of the battle Joe escaped to freedom. He remained in hiding for 30 years, long after the Civil War and Emancipation, emerging for a newspaper interview in 1877.

1850- Gustav Flaubert was the French writer who was once tried for pornography for creating Madame Bovary. This day while in Egypt he kept an appointment with the countries most famous belly dancing prostitute Kuchuck Hanem.

1853- Giusseppi Verdi’s classic opera La Traviata premiered at Teatro alla Fenice in Venice. It was based on Dumas novel Le Dame Aux Camelias. Verdi wrote in his diary about the premiere:" The evening was a disaster! Was it my fault or the fault of the singers? Only time will tell..."

1856-LONG BEFORE AMAZON- Mr. Simon met Mr. Schuster while buying a piano in New York City and discovered they had a common love of books, They formed Simon & Schuster, one of the most famous publishers in the U.S.

1857- THE DREDD SCOTT DECISION.-One of the incidents leading to the Civil War and one of the most infamous court rulings in US History. A slave, Dredd Scott, sued in court for his freedom on the grounds that he no longer lived in a slave state, because his master had moved them to a free state.

The Supreme Court of Justice Taney, whom the N.Y. Tribune had described as "5 slaveholders and two doughfaces", handed down the decision that not only was Scott still a slave, but he and his descendants could never have rights of U.S. Citizenship, no matter where they lived. In effect, all Afro-Americans even if born free in the North were still not people but property.

This idea exploded the already enraged public opinion in the North. Four years later the same justice Taney swore in Abraham Lincoln as president.

1860- Presidential candidate Abe Lincoln in a speech said:" Thank God we have a system where workers have the Right to Strike."

1864- THE NAVAJO LONG WALK- After being defeated when their Navajo-Fortress in Canyon de Chelly was stormed by US Cavalry under Kit Carson, the Navajo and their families were forced into a death march in the winter cold several hundred miles to a reservation. Years later Washington decided it didn't want their ancestral lands after all and let them return.

1884-Susan B. Anthony led 100 top women’s rights advocates, called Suffragettes, to a meeting with President Chester Allen Arthur. The demanded he throw his support for giving women the vote. President Arthur said he would think about it, but he did nothing.

1899- The wonder drug of the age and the first patent medicine- Aspirin, is patented. Felix Hoffman isolated the compound salicin from ground willow bark, an old Indian pain remedy. Ancient Romans drank willow water for pain.

1911-THE YELLOW PERIL- In the bizarre game of diplomatic chess the great powers played before World War One, the race issue was a favorite topic. The" Battle between the White Forces of Christian Civilization against the limitless Yellow Hordes of Asia" was an idea the German Kaiser Wilhelm liked to talk at length on.

On this day the Kaiser's agents convinced the U.S. public via the sensationalist press that Japan had concluded an alliance with Mexico and was preparing to seize the Panama Canal, and that a Japanese Army was even now marching up Baja to attack California! To quiet public fears President Taft was actually forced to mobilize 2/3 of the U.S. Army and Navy and sent it to the Mexican border "for maneuvers".

When the Great War did come Japan was on the American side and the Kaiser tried fruitlessly to make an alliance with an unsympathetic Mexico.

1917- Woman’s rights advocate Margaret Sanger is released from prison where she was jailed for trying to open the first Planned Parenthood clinic. She married the inventor of the Three-In-One Oil Company and used to smuggle abortion medicines in cans of oil. During prohibition she smuggled diaphragms in cases of innocent-looking bootleg whiskey. She lived into the 1960s, long enough to see the Birth Control Pill and the Women’s Movement.

1918- The Navy destroyer USN Cyclops disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle, and has never been found since.

1921- The film Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse premiered. The first Hollywood film to earn over one million dollars, and it made a major star out of Rudolf Valentino..

1927- Fritz Lang’s film Metropolis opened in the US.

1936- Mr. Clarence Birdseye introduced frozen vegetables.

1944- The first great daylight bombing raid on Hitler’s capitol Berlin. In one of the largest air battles of World War Two 800 US B-17 and P-51s battled hundreds of Luftwaffe fighters. Over 80 US planes were shot down losing 690 airmen and 45 German but the message was sent: Berlin would now get the kind of destruction that Rotterdam, Warsaw and London got.

1978- Hustler Magazine publisher Larry Flynt was shot and crippled by a lunatic.

1979- The film The China Syndrome premiered. It was about an accident at an American nuclear power plant.. Three weeks later the real Three Mile Island accident occurred, boosting the box office. " It's spooky, it's enough to make you religious" said star Michael Douglas.

1981- CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite retired. Dan Rather succeeded him after CBS learned ABC was offering Rather big bux to jump networks. Roger Mudd, who was thought to be the real successor to Cronkite, left the network to anchor the History Channel. Dan Rather was the CBS anchor until 2004.

1989- Time Inc. merged with Warner Communications to become Time Warner, the largest media conglomerate in the world. They were bought by AOL in 2000 but AOL proved to be dead weight and they resumed control as TimeWarner in 2003.

1998- The Big Lebowski opened in theaters. The Dude Abides…
Yesterday’s Question: Which is NOT a opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart? a) Cosi Fan Tutti, b) Lucia di Lammermoor, c) La Nozzi di Figaro, d) Ideomeno, Prince of Crete.

Answer: b) Lucia Di Lammermoor.