5.08.2017 Day in History

Pixabay Image 1910710Today around the world is both World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day and a Time of Reconciliation and Remembrance for Those Who Lost Their Lives in World War Two, while in Europe this is Victory-in-Europe-Day; after widespread plunder and looting accompanied Visigoth invasions of the Italian Peninsula one thousand six hundred four years ago, Emperor Honorius issued an edict that proffered tax abatements to provinces that particularly suffered in the mayhem; one year more than a century and three-quarters later, in 589, Visigothic rulers in the Iberian Peninsula elected at the Council of Toledo to join with Catholicism and Roman hegemony, at the same time that they amplified and expanded restrictions on and repression of the Jewish population of Iberia; five hundred seventy-six years before this point in time, Hernando de Soto came upon the mighty river that we now call the Mississippi, christening it the River of the Holy Spirit; three hundred fifty-one years previous to now, the Militia Act established conscription under federal law; two years later, in 1794, French scientist Antoine Lavoisier faced trial, conviction, and the guillotine all on the same day during the ‘Reign of Terror’ in revolutionary France; a hundred forty-four years before today’s dawn, English thinker and political economist John Stuart Mill experienced his final day of life; seven years subsequently, in 1880, the magnificent novelist Gustave Flaubert remembered things past no more; one hundred thirty-one years prior to the current conjunction, John Pemberton sold the first glass of ‘Coca-Cola,’ as a patent medicine at his Atlanta pharmacy; nine years beyond that juncture, in 1895, a baby boy entered the world who went on to write and think as U.S. social critic and journalist, Edmund Wilson; four years further on, in 1899, the Irish Literary Theatre, which had formed to present Irish plays by Irish playwrights, proffered its first production in Dublin; two years thereafter, in 1901, Australian working class leaders and activists formed the Australian Labor Party; two years later, in 1903, iconic artist and intellectual Paul Gaughin died; yet another three years closer to this moment in time and space, in 1906, a baby male was born in Italy who grew up as acclaimed film auteur, Roberto Rossellini; half a decade henceforth, in 1911, a male infant took his first breath on his way to a brief life as the brilliant singer, songwriter, and guitarist, Robert Johnson; three hundred sixty-six leap days thereafter, in

"Film strip" by Bart from New Orleans, Louisiana, Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons
“Film strip” by Bart from New Orleans, Louisiana, cc 2.0

1912, Paramount Pictures incorporated; a dozen years afterward, in 1924, a key portion of East Prussia, the Memel Territory, officially became part of Lithuania till its ‘annexation’ by the Nazis just prior to World War Two; seven hundred thirty days still further along life’s highway, in 1926, a male child joined humankind in London who would become upper-crust defender of the environment and media producer David Attenborough; across the Atlantic and the North American continent four years later, in 1930, another baby boy entered our midst on his way to a life as beat bard and “the poet laureate of deep ecology,” Gary Snyder; six years more along time’s arc, in 1936, back in Europe, the prophet of Western decline, Oswald Spengler, spent his final day among family and friends; back in California three hundred sixty-five days later still, in 1937, a male baby first shouted out who would mature as the critically acclaimed author Thomas Pynchon; another year onward, back in Europe in 1938, a baby boy was born who would rise through war and social conflict to write and draw as an influential graphic artist and storyteller, Jean Giraud; seventy-two years ahead of this conjunction, French police and troops in Algeria began massacres of civilians near Setif, in a foretaste of upheaval and brutal attempts to enforce imperial imprimatur in North Africa for the next decade or more, while across the Atlantic in America, celebrants celebrated V E Day, and in Nova Scotia, sailors who were celebrating war’s end rioted in Halifax; eleven years later, in 1956, Henry Ford II left his post at the Ford Foundation;  two years afterward, in 1958, back across the North Atlantic, a male child came into the world en route to fame and acclaim as playwright and social commentator, Roddy Doyle; a dozen years hence, in 1970, anti-Vietnam War protestors clashed with construction workers on Draft_card_burning_vietnam warManhattan in the so-called “Hard Hat Riots,” and the baby girl came along would grow up as fierce social critic and commentator, Naomi Klein; after a two and a half month siege three years further down the pike, in 1973, American Indian Movement protestors surrendered to Federal and local authorities near Wounded Knee, South Dakota; seven years still farther along, in 1980, the World Health Organization officially announced the end of Smallpox as an active human pestilence; eight years past that precise point, in 1988, iconic science fiction storyteller, Robert Heinlein, ended his days on Earth in whatever journey to the stars might follow; fifteen years back, acclaimed Mexican poet and cultural activist Pita Amor died; seven years ever closer to now, in 2007, prolific mystery scribe Philip Craig breathed no longer; five years later, in 2012, beloved children’s author Maurice Sendak had his final moments of life. From Wikipedia Day in History