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Jan 25, 2018
January 25th, 2018

Quiz: The most famous battle on American soil was Gettysburg. Robert E. Lee was defeated. What was the name of the general who won?

Yesterday's Question Answered Below: What does it mean to be quixotic?

History for 1/25/2018
Birthdays: Genghis Khan, Byzantine Emperor Leo IV the Khazar, Robert Burns, Somerset Maugham, Virginia Woolf, Vice Pres Charles "Goodtime Charlie" Curtis, Edwin Newman, Jean Image, Dean Jones, Ava Gardner, Etta James, Corazon Aquino, Anita Pallenberg, Tobe Hooper

Happy National Bubble Wrap Day.
36 AD (-?) THE CONVERSION of ST. PAUL There was a Jewish Pharisee named Saul who on the road to Damascus had a blinding vision. He changed his name to Paul and became the most zealous of Christians. Scholars speculate that Paul may had studied philosophical disciplines like Greek Stoicism and the Jewish Essene movement, because elements of these faiths seem to influence Paul's structuring of his new religion.
Paul is responsible for things like ladies keep their heads covered, men's heads uncovered in Church, etc. He made a point of going to Athens to preach the new religion in Plato's Philosophical Academy. He was also instrumental in bringing Gentiles into the religion, causing an early split in the faithful, when James the brother of Jesus felt that they should stay a reform movement within Judaism. That group eventually died out.

49AD- Claudius declared emperor of Rome.

1077- HENRY AT CANOSSA- One of the hottest arguments of the Middle Ages was whether Kings could boss around Popes or visa-versa. Ever since Pope Leo had crowned Charlemagne in 800 Popes held that no man could rule without the Church's official blessing.
In 1077 German Emperor Henry IV told Pope Gregory VII the Fiery Hildebrandt, that he could appoint or fire German bishops with or without Romes permission. The feud grew as Gregory excommunicated Henry and released all his subjects from allegiance to him; Henry declared Gregory "a licentious false monk" and elected another Pope.
But the superstitious fear of the common people and the ambition of rebellious German nobles brought Henry's kingdom to a standstill. This day witnessed one of the most dramatic scenes in Medieval History: At the Italian town of Canossa Emperor Henry in hairshirt and barefoot stood in the snow waiting at the locked door of the Pope to beg forgiveness. Gregory forgave him but a year later they were at it again and Henry chased Gregory out of Rome with an army and Gregory excommunicated him again.
Luigi Pirandello wrote a play about Henry IV in the 1920s.

1327- Edward III, the Great Plantagenet, became King of England.

1483- Grand Inquisitor of the Spanish Inquisition Peter de Arbules was beaten to death while at prayers at the Cathedral of Saragossa. Tradition states that years later the blood on the spot of his death stayed liquid. He was made a saint in 1867. 1533- Henry VIII secretly married Lady Anne Boleyn, already pregnant with the future Queen Elizabeth. Anne Boleyn was later called a sorceress because she had six fingers on one hand. Lusty King Henry had also slept with Anne's mother and her older sister Mary Boleyn. And yer little dog, too!

1669- THE SECRET TREATY OF DOVER- King Charles II had at last gotten the British throne back from Oliver Cromwell and the Puritans, but he ruled over a kingdom bankrupt and ravaged by civil war. So on this day Charles signed a secret treaty with the richest country in Europe- Louis XIV's France. In it King Charles pledged to return England to the Roman Catholic Faith, and himself convert to Catholicism, in return for heavy subsidies of French gold.
Charles lived in a grand baroque style and may have converted on his deathbed, but said nothing in public, so England stayed Anglican. His brother James II who was openly Catholic was overthrown. The British parliament then passed a law that a Catholic can never again be King of Great Britain.

1755- The King of France appointed the Marquis de Montcalm to command all French forces facing the British in North America.

1814- France invaded by five separate armies and all Europe against him, Napoleon said goodbye to his wife Marie Louise and his three year old son. He would never see either of them ever again. After Waterloo, his father-in-law the Austrian Emperor Francis II kept Marie Louise from joining Napoleon in exile and gave her a handsome Austrian duke as a lover. Napoleons son was renamed the Duke du Reichstadt and raised as an Austrian, until he died of tuberculosis at age 21.
1824- Artist Theodore Gericault was famous for his paintings of horses. This day he died, from a fall off a horse. 1858- Queen Victoria & Albert's eldest child, Victoria the Princess Royal (Vicky), married Crown Prince Frederick of Prussia (Fritzy) in a lavish ceremony. They will sire the future Kaiser Wilhelm II, Victoria's first grandchild and England's great enemy. At this wedding, for the first time the "Wedding March" of Felix Mendelssohn from his "Midsummer's Night Dream" was used as the processional. Like everything Victoria and Albert did, it soon became a custom.
1863- Lincoln fired his army commander Ambrose Burnside and replaced him with General Fighting Joe Hooker. Burnside, whose mutton chop whiskers named the style "sideburns" was a military hard luck case. He lost the battle of Fredericksburg so badly that even the enemy was embarrassed. His replacement "Fighting Joe" Hooker was so fond of "ladies of the evening" that he brought them on campaign in their own tent and cavalry escort. They were called "Hooker's Girls" hence the term-"hookers".
1890- Newspaper reporter Nelly Bly (Elizabeth Cochrane) of the New York World is welcomed home after traveling around the world in 72 days. The stunt was inspired by the Jules Verne story Around the World in 80 days, which had become a hit stage play.

1900- In the Boer War the Boers had surrounded a British garrison in the town of Ladysmith. After many attacks the siege of Ladysmith was broken by a relief force that had in its' ranks a young officer named Winston Churchill.

1924- The first Winter Olympics held in Charmonix, France. Winter sports were celebrated as early as 1901 as the Nordic Games in Scandinavia. Trying to hedge their bets the International Olympic Committee originally styled the Charmonix games the Winter Sports Week. It was so successful that in 1928 the IOC designed the games at St. Moritz the Second Winter Olympiad. These games did a lot to raise the public interest in the sport of ski running, now simply called skiing.

1938- Walt Disney attempted to head off the rising tide of unionizing workers in Hollywood by forming a dummy company union called the Federation of Screen Cartoonists. No other artists but Disney employees joined, and Disney's chief attorney Gunther Lessing could veto any vote they had.

1939-President Franklin Roosevelt designated the fossil rich Badlands area of South Dakota a National Monument. 1945- The Rock Creek Report recommends mass additives of fluoride into American drinking water supplies. Tooth decay drops by 50%, however many right wing fringe groups like the John Birch Society saw floridation as an insidious Commie-Jewish plot.

1947- Mobster Al Capone died in seclusion at his home in Biscayne Bay Florida at age 48. He was released from Alcatraz Prison early because of ill health, his mind was slowly destroyed by untreated syphilis. When another gangster was asked if Capone would resume leadership of the Chicago rackets, he replied:" Big Al is nuttier than a fruitcake."

1949- The first Emmy Awards ceremony was held at the LA Athletic Club. Five awards were given out for shows like Mabel's Fables, and Treasures of Literature. Rudy Vallee hosted. Mayor Fletcher Bowman declared it " TV Day" in LA.
1959- American Airlines sets up the first jetliner passenger service across the U.S. 1959- VATICAN II- Pope John XXIII called for the creation of a Second Vatican Council to initiate reforms in the Roman Catholic Church. This was called Vatican II and it's sweeping ideas changed the Church forever. Latin Masses replaced with native language, the priest does the Eucharist ceremony facing you instead of with his back to you, Folk Masses with guitars, etc.

1960- Actress Diana Barrymore, the daughter of John Barrymore, overdosed on sleeping pills. The Barrymore family that had dominated the American theater since the 1850's had a history of drug and alcohol abuse. Ancestor after ancestor drank themselves to death. Current leader of the family Drew Barrymore recovered after seeking rehab at age 12. 1961- John F. Kennedy has the first televised Presidential press conference.

1961- Walt Disney's 101 Dalmatians premiered. " Cruella, Cruella da Ville,.. "

1970- Robert Altman's groovy movie M*A*S*H premiered.

1971- Charles Manson and his followers convicted of 27 counts of murder. They were all sentenced to the Gas Chamber, but the death penalty had been abolished in California.

1971- Idi Amin seized power in Uganda.

1984- The widow of Mao tse Tung, Chiang Ching, was sentenced to death for conspiring against the Chinese state. Madam Chiang was one of the leaders of Mao's Cultural Revolution crackdowns and her accomplices were called the Gang of Four.

1995- Moscow radar detected a nuclear missile launch from Norwegian waters headed right for them. Russian President Boris Yeltsin and his cabinet had five minutes to decide if this was an accident or the dreaded First Strike, warranting a full retaliatory launching of all Russian nukes against the US. They decided it was a mistake, and it turned out the missile was only a Norwegian weather satellite being fired into orbit. Similar nail biting incidents happened to Jimmy Carter in 1980 and off the US coast in 1986.

2011- The Arab Spring pro-democracy protests that began in Tunisia spread to Egypt, the worlds largest Arab country. Huge protests began in Cairo against long time president Hosni Mubarak. Eventually they forced his ouster.
Yesterday's Question: What does it mean to be quixotic?

Answer: To be like Don Quixote, to have idealistic motives, but be unrealistically impractical and dreamy.