On this day in history.

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by KevinJS, Aug 3, 2012.

  1. giradman

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    Salk Announces Polio Vaccine in 1953

    Poliomyelitis has affected mankind for thousands of years with pictorial evidence in Egyptian artworks and likely a long pre-history - the viral infection causes muscle wasting and paralysis, which is often permanent - if the respiratory muscles are affected, then patients in the mid-1900 years were placed in 'iron lungs', temporarily or longer! Salk's development of a polio vaccine was a miraculous blessing, especially to the many children who could have been crippled or even have died. More in the quotes below and also some interesting summary facts HERE.

    For myself (and 2 brothers), I was nearly 7 y/o when the announcement was made - we all received the injection - the Sabin oral vaccine developed later was a little easier for kids to swallow - ;)

    Some recommended films for those interested: 1) Warm Springs (2005) - HBO drama-documentary about FDR's struggle w/ his paralysis and the impact of Warm Springs - highly recommended; and 2) The Five Pennies - 1959 bioptic about Red Nichols, the jazz cornetist and his group the Five Pennies - his daughter develops polio and a dramatic presentation of her struggles to walk again (w/ braces) - BUT, Louis Armstrong has a prominent guest role in this film for us jazz fans! Dave :)

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  2. giradman

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    The United States Officially Enters World War I Today in 1917

    One of the deadliest conflicts in human history - "The total number of military and civilian casualties in World War I were about 40 million: estimates range from 15 to 19 million deaths and about 23 million wounded military personnel (Source)". However, the Influenza Pandemic starting in 1918 killed at least 2-3X that number of people worldwide (first quote below).

    Remaining quotes about the US entry into WW I - the number of deaths and casualties suffered by the United States in the war was only several percent compared to the other Allies but many more died of the flu. For those who have yet to see They Shall Not Grow Old, Peter Jackson's recently restored and colorized WW I video footage documentary, then deserves to be on your 'To-Do' list (we saw the film in the theater back in December). Also, yet another new WW I book, The Great War in America (2018) by Garrett Peck is recommended - just started to read my copy. Dave :)

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  3. giradman

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    American Revolution Begins on April 19, 1775 at Lexington & Concord!

    Below the dotted line, a post I left a few years ago in this thread - also a nice discussion at the History Website for those interested. Just by coincidence, I'm finishing the book In the Hurricane's Eye: The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at Yorktown (October, 2018) by Nathaniel Philbrick (below w/ a map of Yorktown, where the US Revolution more or less ended w/ the surrender of Cornwallis in October 1781 - took two more years for the Treaty of Paris to officially end the war) - excellent narrative of the allied cooperation, both land and sea, between Washington and the French. Dave :)
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    American Revolution Begins on April 19, 1775 at Lexington & Concord!


    On April 19, 1775 in Lexington & Concord, Massachusetts, the first armed conflict between the Americans and British occurred w/ the 'shot heard around the world' on Lexington Green - beginning quote below from a Wiki Article - both towns are close to Boston, so an easy visit either by yourself (which I did a number of decades ago) or as part of likely many tours in the area. Pics below from the web - Dave :)

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    #2523 giradman, Apr 19, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019
  4. giradman

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    Louisiana Purchase Concluded Between France and in United States in 1803

    On April 30, a number of events occurred - first quote below from the History Website - decided to discuss the 1803 Louisiana Purchase, probably the most important achievement during Thomas Jefferson's administration - the following quotes provide the details (including the link). The cost was $15,000,000 which was a bargain at 3 cents an acre - the purchase double the size of the United States (and was not until the James Polk administration, 1845-1849, that a greater amount of territory was added to achieve the current size of the United States; of course, not counting the purchase of Alaska from Russia).

    Jefferson immediately commissioned an exploration of the 'new' territory, the Lewis and Clark Expedition, also known as the Corps of Discovery - the expedition spanned about 2 1/2 years (May 1804 to September 1806) w/ much help from the Native Americans, especially an interpreter known as Sacagawea - the journey reached the present Oregon-Washington west coast (pics below of the size of the purchase, the expedition, and a Lewis & Clark w/ their guide). Finally, Ken Burns has done a wonderful film on this expedition (last pic) back in 2005 or so which I own - highly recommended for those interested. Dave :)

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  5. giradman

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    Leonardo da Vinci Dies Today in 1519 - 500th Anniversary Year!

    Leonardo da Vinci was one of the world's greatest minds and the ideal for the 'Renaissance Man' - his interests and accomplisments were unbelievably diverse (just a brief summary in the first quote below from the Wiki link) - remaining quotes briefly discuss his bio and history - MUCH more at the link, so take a look, if interested. Finally, just a few pics, including ones of his two most famous paintings, i.e. the Mona Lisa in the Louvre Museum (which I've seen twice but from a distance because of the vast crowd) and the Last Supper, a sadly deteriorating fresco in Milan, Italy (seen just once) - restoration attempts continue to this day. Dave :)

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  6. giradman

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    Bonnie & Clyde Shot to Death this day in 1934!

    Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow (and their gang) were notorious bank robbers in the early 1930s made 'famous' by the 1967 film Bonnie and Clyde w/ Warren Beatty & Faye Dunaway - on this day in 1934 their car was ambushed by Texas and Louisiana state police and the two were killed by a hail of bullets. A retired Texas Ranger, Frank Hamer led of the posse that tracked down and killed the two - more of the story in the quotes w/ pics - Netflix has just made the film The Highwaymen starring Kevin Costner as Hamer & Woody Harrelson as Maney Gault, both former Texas Rangers brought out of retirement - we watched the film last month - highly recommended if you're into this history. Dave :)

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  7. giradman

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    Secretariat Wins Triple Crown in 1973 After a 25-Year Hiatus!

    For horse racing fans, this year's Triple Crown races were somewhat bizarre: 1) Kentucky Derby - Country House, a 65-1 longshot, won after a disqualification; 2) Preakness Stakes - War of Will; and 3) Belmont - Sir Winston; so 3 different horses w/ some surprises! But back in 1973, Secretariat was dominant in the Triple Crown Races - some discussion in my 'Kentucky Travelogue' HERE about horse racing, for those interested (and in the quotes below). Finally, there is an excellent movie from 2011 on Secretariat w/ Diane Lane (worth a watch - I own on BD). Dave :)

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  8. J. A.

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    July 16, 1969:
    50 years ago today, Apollo11 was launched by a Saturn V rocket. Members of the crew were Neil Armstrong, Edwin (Buzz) Aldrin and Michael Collins. In the following days, Armstrong and Aldrin successfully landed on the Moon (Mare Tranquillitatis). Armstrong was the first man to set foot on the lunar surface. His words (small step for man, giant leap for mankind) are famous. The crew returned to Earth on July 24, 1969.
    Apollo 11 - Wikipedia
    Photos:
    The crew
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    Lunar module Eagle
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    The plaque on Eagle’s ladder
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    Buzz Aldrin’s bootprint
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    #2528 J. A., Jul 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  9. giradman

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    BOY - seems so long ago - I was in medical school @ the U. of Michigan - wooing Susan my future wife and had just visited her family in New Jersey the month before. Watched the moon landing at a friend's house in Ann Arbor - WHAT at thrill. For those interested in this super historic event, please see the 2019 film described and linked below - Dave :)

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  10. giradman

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    Assault of Battery Wagner and death of Robert Gould Shaw

    Well, July 18 is quite a day on the History Website - below just 8 items selected, but I decided to discuss the Civil War (surprised - ;)) and the assault of Battery Wagner on Morris Island in 1863 (last 3 quotes below) - the 54th Massachusetts Infantry, African-American troops led by the the son of an abolitionist Boston family, Robert Gould Shaw - he and many of his men perished that day.

    Two of our trips this year are pertinent to this story - first on a visit to Kiawah Island near Charleston, we did a day trip to Folly Beach (covered in my travelogue of that area) - the Morris Island Lighthouse (now in the water) can be seen from the northern end of Folly (see pics); then a few months later we went to Boston, home of Robert Gould Shaw w/ a wonderful bronze memorial to Shaw by sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens on Boston Common, across the street from the State House; connections - how wonderful. Dave :)

    P.S. The film mentioned below, i.e. Glory is highly recommended (partly filmed on Jekyll Island - another of my travelogues); second, the reason the lighthouse is now surrounded by the sea (construction of jetties to protect Charleston harbor) is also the explanation of why Fort Wagner no longer exists, i.e. underwater!

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