8.22.2016 Day in History

india, temple, hinduCelebrating an imperial inauguration three hundred seventy-seven years in advance of today, India commemorates Madras Day in honor of an English purchase of property in order to found that community;on the opposite side of the world, in Northern United Kingdom, one thousand four hundred fifty-one years ago, a saintly and proselytizing visitor to Scotland supposedly stopped a Loch Ness monster from eating a swimmer; three hundred seventy-four years prior to the present pass,King Charles I sealed his fate and began the English Civil War with a statement that labeled Parliament a ‘nest of traitors;’ half a decade forward in time, in 1647, a little baby boy was born who would grow up as Denis Papin and discover the principles of pressure cooking; seven years onward from that, across the wide Atlantic, in 1654, the first known Jewish immigrant to North America arrived in New Amsterdam; one hundred sixteen years subsequently, in 1770, on one of his many exploratory journeys for the empire on which the sun never set, James Cook oversaw his crew’s disembarking and claiming for England the Eastern coast of Southern Australia; twenty-one years further along the temporal arc, in 1791, a different imperial project experienced the uprising of the enslaved and indentured classes in Haiti; seven years onward from that, in 1798,other French forces went to the aid of the Irish uprising by landing troops in Kilcummin harbour during the course of the United Irishmen’s Irish Rebellion; thirty-three years after that, across the wide Atlantic, in 1831, a similar sort of rebellion began just after the stroke of midnight in Southampton County, Virginia, as Nat Turner and his fellow insurgents rose up against the brutal slavery racism brutalitydepredations of the slaveocracy; seventeen years later, in 1848, the same ‘land of the free home of the brave’ that crushed Turner’s uprising claimed the vast territory of New Mexico as spoils for the invasion and conquest of the Mexican nation; moving on a mere year, in 1849, across the wide Atlantic belligerent forces of Austria’s empire lofted unmanned balloons against Venice in history’s first ‘air raid;’ thirteen additional years in the direction of now, in 1862, Abraham Lincoln responded to Horace Greeley’s plea for emancipation with the circumscribed contention that the Union, and not slavery, was at issue here; two years more, and back across the sea in 1864, diplomats for a dozen nations acceded to the Geneva Accords that would purport to govern the ‘law of war;’ eleven years thereafter, in 1875, Japanese and Russian representatives both signed the Treaty of Saint Petersburg, which exchanged Sakhalin for the Kuril Islands; on this date sixteen years after that, meanwhile, in 1891, the acclaimed poet, writer, and journalist of Czechoslovakia, Jan Neruda, lived out his final chapter; seven hundred thirty-one days in the future from that, in 1893, Samuel Gompers and a delegation of labor leaders pleaded with New York City’s Mayor for a relief program to provide jobs for unemployed workers; half a decade farther down the pike, in 1898, the Texas Rangers gave a telling ‘temporary’ appointment to hired killer Jim Miller to carry out an ‘assignment’ for the Lone Star State, and the baby boy was born who would become the accomplished ‘modern’ artist, Alexander Calder; four years henceforth, in 1902, Cadillac Motor Company first incorporated itself, and across the Atlantic, a female infant shouted out en route to life as a performer, propagandist, and Filmmaker, Leni Riefenstahl; two subsequent years on time’s forward march, in 1904, the brilliant and controversial writer, Kate Chopin, drew her final breath; halfway round the world a half dozen years yet later japanese-Tokugawa_Ieyasu2on, in 1910, Japan proceeded to annex Korea and rule and plunder it for the next three and a half decades; another five years in the direction of today’s light and air, in 1915, an infant boy arrived on the scene who would grow up as James Hillier, an inventor of the electron microscope; an extra seven hundred thirty-one days afterward, in 1917,across the Atlantic in America, another baby boy opened his eyes who would rise as the esteemed performer and rocker and writer, John Lee Hooker; three years again on the temporal road, in 1920, the male child first gazed round about who would become the creative genius and beloved storyteller, Ray Bradbury; another dozen years on the path to now, in 1932, the British Broadcasting Corporation first experimented with television broadcasting; a further thousand ninety-five days ahead of that passage, in 1935, the female child entered our midst who would mature as the estimable thinker and skillful scribe, Annie Proulx; six years along the path to now from there, in 1941, back in Europe, Nazi forces arrived at the outskirts of Leningrad, opening up one of the most horrifying and important sieges in history; three hundred sixty-six days subsequent to that juncture, in 1942, thousands of miles Southwest over the Atlantic, Brazil declared war on Germany and Italy; three years even closer to the current context, as the carnage of world war came to an end in 1945,fifty-five U.S. airline employees formed the Airline Stewardesses’ Association to fight against sexist practices in employment; a pair of years further along, in 1947, a girl child bounced into our presence on her way to life as the singer and songwriter and Grateful Dead mainstay, Donna Jean Godchaux; eleven years after that, in 1958, Nobel Literary Laureate Roger Martin du Gard said his final goodbyes; four years still more proximate to the present pass, in 1962, Charles de Gaulle, somewhat miraculously, survived an assassination attempt that three generals with very close ties to U.S. intelligence sought to carry out; a single year on the road forward from there, in 1963,

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back in the U.S., the girl child cried out who would grow into the rocker and writer Tori Amos; three years more along time’s travels, in 1966, the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee took shape out of the consolidation of two earlier drives to unionize in the agricultural sector; an exact year additional around the sun, in 1967, the scientist who initially formulated a birth control pill, Norman Pincus, spent his final day alive; four years hence, in 1971, J. Edgar Hoover and John Mitchell announced the arrest of twenty of the so-called Camden 28, Catholic antiwar activists who broke into a Draft Board and destroyed files;three hundred sixty-six days later, in 1972, the International Olympics Committee expelled Rhodesia; another year thereafter, in 1973, Chile’s Legislature issued a resolution condemning Salvador Allende’s government and calling for his resignation; five years farther in today’s direction, in 1978, forces of the Sandinista National Liberation Front, despite U.S. support for their fascist oppressor, consolidated their control of Managua and took over the National Palace, and the respected journalist and founding father of modern Kenya, Jomo Kenyatta, breathed his last; three hundred sixty-five days later than that, in 1979, renowned storyteller James T. Farrell died; another year still more in proximity to the present point in time, in 1980, the American Clothing and Textile Workers Union leader Joyce Williams became the first female member of the AFL-CIO Executive Committee; twenty-seven years back, the estimable thinker and activist Huey Newton breathed no more; seven years beyond that passing, in 1996, the faux ‘progressive’ President, Bill Clinton, signed a bill that gutted human services in the United States and essentially declared war on poor people; an additional seven years in time’s tidal pull to today, in 2003, Alabama’s Supreme Court Chief Justice faced a suspension from duty because he refused to remove a statue of the Ten Commandments in front of the State’s judicial building; the very next year, in 2004, across the Atlantic and North Sea in Norway, thieves at an Oslo museum absconded with The Scream and The Madonna, two of Edvard Munch’s most popular paintings; three years nearer still to today, in 2007, a Storm botnet program successfully hijacked e-mail accounts and sent out nearly sixty million bogus messages, and the poet and critic and short story master Grace Paley sang her swan song.