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Author Topic: History for 3/24/2004
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History for 3/24/2004 from the desk of Tom Sito

Birthdays: Steve McQueen, Ferlingetti , Ub Iwerks (the first Disney animator), John Wesley Powell, Harry Houdini aka Eric Weiss, Edward Weston, Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle, Clyde Barrow of Bonnie & Clyde, Joe Barbera of Hanna & Barbera is 93, Elton John, Bob Mackie, Robert Carradine, Jesus Alou, Laura Flynn-Boyle, Alyson Hannigan

To the ancient Romans this was the Day of Blood- when the priests of the Goddess Cybele would end a nine day fast by walking through the streets practicing self-flagellation with whips, atoning for sins with blood. The Christians later called this Good Friday which ends the fast of Lent.

Today is the Feast of Swedish Saint Catherine of Vadstena.

1241- The Mongol hordes sent into Europe by Subotai, under Vuldai and the Tartar Paidar burn the Polish city of Krakow. A trumpeter trying to give a warning from a church tower was shot through the throat with an arrow. Since then in his memory in the town square every hour on the hour a trumpeter plays the bugle call and stops short at the same note (The Heynal ) .I was there a few years ago and believe me it IS played every hour on the hour !

1603- Queen Elizabeth Ist of England dies of a gum inflammation, James VI of Scotland, son of Mary Queen of Scots, becomes King James I Stewart of the United Kingdom. Elizabeth was 69 and had ruled England since she was 25. She was famous for being frugal but she loved extravagant clothing. At her death she left 2,000 dresses. When an Anglican bishop in a sermon tried to criticize her for vanity the Queen warned him to hold his tongue"ere ye may attain Heaven before your time".

1635 - Jacques Callot, French cartoonist/engraver, dies at about 42

1663- King Charles II granted lands in the newly forming American settlements called Carolina to noblemen who supported him in the recently ended Civil War.

1765- the British Parliament passes the American Quartering Act, which means you have to let a soldier sleep and eat in your house and leave cans of Holsten Pils and Marmite jars around whether you like it or not ! You even had to give them your extra food and candles at no charge! Up to now all the British army was on the frontier protecting against Indians, now it seemed the redcoats were moved into towns and settlements to keep an eye on the Americans ! This and the Stamp Act was another of the sort of thing that bugged Americans about being a colony.

1794- Hero of the American Revolution Thaddeus Kosciuszko raised the banner of Revolt to liberate Poland from the Russians, Austrians and Germans. They were unimpressed.
In spirit of American and French liberty he appeared in the great square of Krakow in a peasants jacket and cap and declares a fight to the death. He finished the war in a Russian prison. Eventually released, he visited America in 1797 and was paid $3947 in back pay as an American army officer. He spent all the money buying slaves and freeing them.

1808- Napoleons¹ French army entered Madrid.

1843- THE BATTLE OF HYDERABAD- Sir Charles Napier and the British Army of India defeated the Balouki tribesmen and conquered the region of the Indus Valley called the Sind. One problem generals always have after a big battle is coming up with a good name. The battle was fought near a village called Dabaa but in Hindi that means Greasy Animal Skins. Napier didn¹t want to be known as the Victor of Greasy Animal Skins so he sent an officer to ride around until he found a town with a more suitable name. Finally they chose the town of Hyderabad. Back in London Napier was hailed as the Conquerer of Sind and Punch magazine punned that his report consisted of one word-PECCAVI- Latin for " I have Sinned.- get it? " Victorian chuckles!

1882 -In Berlin German scientist Robert Koch announced the discovery of the bacillus that caused Tuberculosis, enabling a vaccine to at last be created. T.B. or consumption, was the AIDS of the 1800's- killing everyone from Frederic Chopin to Doc Holliday to Aubrey Beardsley. Today there is a new strain of Super-TB spreading from underdeveloped countries. In Franz Schubert's time it was a strange turn-on for young men to date girls they knew were dying of consumption. Apparently the disease made one especially beautiful just before the end, like a candle flaring up before it goes out.

1934-The Major Bowes Original Amateur Hour debuted on radio. It became a national craze to see who could be a future star. Frank Sinatra was among their finds. The show eventually moved to television and later spawned the Ted Mack Amateur Hour, Chuck Barris the Gong Show, Star Search and American Idol.

1939- The film the Hound of the Baskervilles premiered with actors Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes and Nigel Bruce as Dr. Watson . They became the most famous interpreters of the characters and went on to make a dozen more films.

1943 - The first Japanese anime¹ feature "Momotaro's Sea Eagles" premiered.

1944- The Nazi Gestapo in Rome retaliated for a car bomb that killed 33 Germans by pulling innocent people at random off the street and executing them.

1954- The Nash-Kelvinator Company and the Hudson Car Company merge to form American Motors Corporation or AMC automobiles.

1955- Tennessee William's "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" debuts at Broadway's Marosco Theater. Barbera Bel-Geddes was the first Cat and Burl Ives was " Big Daddy".

1958- Elvis Presley inducted into the Army.- G.I. Blues!

1962- No one had been a more loyal supporter of President John F. Kennedy than Frank Sinatra. The singer got his Ratpack friends to stump for the candidate and even got Mafia money to support a man who¹s brother Bobby was busy busting the rackets in Congress. But the President was warned that association with such a known libertine would cost him family values votes one day. So when Kennedy next visited Palm Springs he not only refused an invitation to stay with Sinatra but he did stay with more wholesome singer Bing Crosby, a Republican! Sinatra in a rage took a sledgehammer to the extra guest cottage he was preparing for JFK and broke off his friendship with JFK¹s brother-in-law actor Peter Lawford. This effectively ended the Ratpack era.

1973- In Buffalo a fan bit rock singer Lou Reed on the ass.

1989- A drunk captain of the supertanker Exxon Valdez Oil runs aground and spills 11 million gallons of crude oil in Prince William Sound Alaska. Insiders claim Exxon fabricated the drunk-captain story to excuse the inadequate detection and warning equipment. The route was well charted and easy to maneuver.

1999- The U.S. and Nato begin bombing Belgrade over Serbian attacks on ethnic Albanians in Kossovo.


Your scenes are there forever - Ollie Johnston

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