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March 27th, 2008 thurs
March 27th, 2008

Quiz: Was the world ever put up for auction?

Yesterdays’ question answered below: Why is the speed of a ship measured in knots?
History for 3/27/2008
Birthdays: French Prince Louis XVII –the boy during the Revolution who died in prison while his Royal parents were guillotined, Patty Smith Hill- 1868- The composer of the song Happy Birthday to You, Edward Steichen, Gloria Swanson, Sarah Vaughn, Maria Schneider, Mies Van der Rohe, Snooky Lanson, Wilhelm Ronthgen the discoverer of X-Rays, Nathaniel Currier of Currier & Ives, cellist Mtisislav Rostropovich, Michael York is 66, Quentin Tarantino is 45, Mariah Carey is 38

The Ancient Romans called today Washing Day, the origin of our concept of Spring Cleaning.

1513- Juan Ponce De Leon sighted the coastline of Florida and claimed it for His Most Catholic Majesty the King of Spain. For years Spanish maps called all of North America- Las Floridas. Alabama was known as Western Florida until 1819.

1790- The invention of modern shoelaces!

1802-The Peace of Amiens- A rare three years of peace breaks out in Europe. This interrupted the constant warfare that had been raging since 1792 and would resume 1805 -1815. Around this time Napoleon was being annoyed by a queer American inventor named Robert Fulton who had some strange plans for a ship with no sails powered only by steam paddles. He even proposed another ship that could travel underwater ! Robert Fulton had tried the British Admiralty first, but got no where. Napoleon kept him cooling his heels in his waiting room until he gave up and returned to America.

1814- THE BATTLE OF HORSESHOE BEND-The last great Indian battle in the American South. The War of 1812 coincided with Seneca prophet Tecumseh's called for all indians regardless of tribe to unite and fight the white man. Chief Red Eagle and the Creek Nation tried to fight Gen. Andrew Jackson and his volunteer army of frontiersmen down in the Alabama territory. Jackson's army included Davey Crockett, Sam Houston and future Senator Thomas Hart Benton. Jackson (Indians named him "Sharp Knife") destroyed the Creeks in one huge battle. In a switch on Hollywood images in this battle the Indians fought from inside a wooden walled fort and the whites charged around it. After the carnage Jackson ordered his men to cut off the dead brave's noses so he could make an accurate count. Andy Jackson became a national hero and carried a lead bullet around in his shoulder for the rest of his life, Sam Houston got shot in the groin which may have caused his marriage to a Cherokee woman to break up and Chief Red Eagle put on a suit and tie and changed his name to William Weatherford.

1866- Andrew Rankin received the first patent for the upright porcelain urinal.

1886- GERONIMO ! After a whirlwind campaign across Arizona being chased by three U.S. armies, Geronimo and his Chiracuha Apaches surrender. For weeks with only 32 braves with their families Geronimo held off 5,000 troops. The Apaches nicknamed their pursuing enemy General George Crook "General Day-After-Tomorrow" for his inability to keep up with them. Finally they were cornered and forced to give up. Geronimo and the Chiracua were shipped off to a Florida swamp for ten years before being allowed to return to their homelands. Many White Mountain Apaches who hated Geronimo acted as scouts for the army. Afterwards they were rewarded by being shipped off as well.

1908- Bud Fisher's comic strip Mutt & Jeff born. Fisher sponsored an early animation studio, but spent most of the profits on nightclubs and chorus girls.

1912- Washington DC received it’s famous cherry trees, 3,020 in number, a gift from the Japanese government.

1940- “Rebecca,” the first American movie by Alfred Hitchcock opened.

1952-U.P.A.’s cartoon “Rooty-Toot-Toot” premiered. It’s music score was by jazzman Phil Monroe, the first African American to receive a screen credit for scoring a movie.

1952- “Singing in the Rain” starring Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O’Connor premiered.

1957- California Reverend Robert Schuller opened the first Drive-In Church.

1964-THE ANCHORAGE,ALASKA EARTHQUAKE- The largest in the western hemisphere this century so far..9.2 on the Richter Scale. It created a tsunami tidal wave that hit the coastlines of Alaska, British Columbia and Hawaii with a 100 foot wall of water. 164 people died.

1973- In one of the more controversial stunts in Oscar history, when Marlon Brando won an Academy Award for his role in The Godfather, he sent a buckskin clad model named Sacheen Littlefeather to refuse the award and deliver a protest about the Hollywood treatment of Native Americans. He gave her a 16 page speech to deliver, but backstage the producer threatened her if she talked for more than 45 seconds.

1996- Fearful of MAD COW DISEASE- The European Community banned the export of beef from Britain for one year.
Yesterday’s Question : Why is the speed of a ship measured in knots?

Answer: In the XVIII Century, a sailing ship measured its speed by dropping a drag line with knots in the rope at intervals. As the knot ran between a mate’s fingers he would shout “Mark” so another could time it with an hourglass. A knot is considered one nautical mile per hour.