12.29.2016 Day in History

In the Northern European tradition, today is the fifth day of Christmas; followers of England’s second king named Henry murdered Thomas Becket eight hundred forty-six years ago in the Canterbury Cathedral, which led to the priest’s subsequent canonization in both the Catholic and Anglican Churches; a quarter millennium and seven years later, in 1427, Ming Dynasty occupying forces, having for two decades dominated Dai Viet, the name that Vietnamese used for the better part of eight centuries till 1800, withdrew altogether, and Vietnam conducted its affairs under its own aegis; five hundred eight years before the present pass, Portuguese colonizers furthered their hold on Indian claims at the Battle of Dombhat; a mere year more than thirteen decades later, in 1639, English thinker and physician Thomas Sydenham, who made the first tasty Laudanum, drew his final breath; Cherokee elders signed the New Echota treaty, which exactly four years short of two centuries henceforth, in 1835, ceded all tribal claims to land East of the Mississippi River; a decade afterward exactly, in 1845, the United States annexed the Republic of Texas, which entered the union as the twenty-eighth State, a slave jurisdiction; another forty-five years onward, in 1890, U.S. cavalry troops slaughtered upwards of 300 Lakota Sioux, primarily women and children and elderly, at Wounded Knee South Dakota; James Joyce; one hundred and twelve years back,  novelist, playwright, and critic Kuppali Venkatappa Puttappa (Kuvempu) was born; one hundred and two years before the here and now, began to serialize A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man in The Egoist; eight years closer to the present, in 1922, a male infant uttered his first cry en route to a life as the writer and critic William Gaddis; two years past that point, in 1924, the Swiss Nobel-Prize winning poet Carl Spitteler died; two years yet later on, in 1926, Austrian poet and writer Rainer Maria Rilke took his last breath; another four years thereafter, in 1930,the 110px-IqbalPersian and Urdu poet and philosopher Muhammad Iqbal first outlined, in a presentation at Allahabad, his proposal for the creation of Pakistan in what was then Northwest India; yet four years more along time’s path, in 1934, imperial Japan withdrew from the conventions of naval treaties that had inhibited the construction of war-making ships; three years even closer to the current context, in 1937 on the other side of the world, the Irish Free State joined the ‘family of nations’ as the Republic of Ireland; four years farther down the pike, in 1941, a male infant joined humanity’s panoply en route to the prolific rocker and lyricist Ray Thomas; just three hundred sixty-five days still more proximate to the present pass, in 1942, a Canadian boy child opened his eyes whose work, as Rick Danko, would make The Band a legendary component of Rock and Roll; a baby girl was born four years beyond that conjunction, in 1946, who would grow up to become the hard-hitting crooner Marianne Faithful; another year hence, in 1947, a baby boy shouted out who would become the acclaimed musician and songwriter, Cozy Powell; seven hundred thirty-one days later still, in 1949, Bridgeport, Connecticut became the locus of the world’s first full-time Ultra-High-Frequency television station; ten years subsequent to that juncture, in 1959, Richard Feynman made a presentation,There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom, that has since come to represent the initiation of nanotechnology; eleven years diego rivera work labor artonward from there, in 1970 in Washington, years of political effort by trade unionists paid off with the creation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration by act of Congress; thirty years back, the iconic Russian director and screenwriter Andrei Tarkovsky lived out his final scene; a thousand ninety-six days nearer to now, in 1989, riots erupted in Hong Kong at the decision to force repatriation on Vietnamese nationals in the province; seven years after that to the day, in 1996, the government of Guatemala and rebels there agreed to a peace accord that ended nearly four decades of fighting; precisely a decade hence, in 2006,England discharged its final indebtedness to the United States from World War Two, and nearly 15,000 steelworker union members settled their strike against sixteen different rubber producing facilities.