Today in History for 13th August 2018

Historical Events

1932 – Yankee pitcher Red Ruffing homers and wins game 1-0 in 10 tying
1960 – USSR withdraws advisors from China
1981 – Last broadcast of “The Waltons” on CBS-TV
1986 – KRE-AM in Berkeley CA changes call letters to KBLX (now KBFN)
1988 – US beats Jamaica 5-1 in 2nd round of 1990 world soccer cup
2006 – Canadian Open Women’s Golf, London Hunt CC: Christie Kerr wins by 1 shot from Angela Stanford

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Famous Birthdays

1860 – Annie Oakley [Phoebe Ann Moses], American sharp shooter (Buffalo Bill’s Wild West), born in North Star, Ohio (d. 1926)
1899 – Alfred Hitchcock, English director (Psycho, Birds, Rear Window), born in Leytonstone, Essex (d. 1980)
1920 – Neville Brand, American soldier and actor (DOA, Love Me Tender), born in Griswold, Iowa (d. 1992)
1952 – Tom Marino, American politician (Rep-R-Pennsylvania 2011-), born in Williamsport, Pennsylvania
1971 – Moritz Bleibtreu, German actor
1979 – Román Colón, Dominican baseball player

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Famous Deaths

1721 – Jacques Lelong, French bibliographer (b. 1665)
1948 – Elaine Hammerstein, American actress (b. 1897)
1990 – Jimmy Starr, actor (Hot Flashes), dies at 86
1994 – Manfred Worner, German general/Secretary-General of NATO (1988-94), dies at 59
1996 – António de Spínola, Portuguese general and conservative President of Portugal (1974), dies of a pulmonary embolism at 86
2007 – Brian Adams, aka Demolition Crush, American professional wrestler (b. 1964)

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Today in History for 12th August 2018

Historical Events

1687 – Battle of Mohacs: Ottoman invaders of Hungary routed by forces of Holy Roman Emperor under Charles of Lorraine
1863 – 1st cargo of lumber leaves Burrard Inlet (Vancouver, BC)
1942 – German 1st tank leader captures Elista, Kalmukkensteppe
1960 – Echo 1, 1st communications satellite, is launched by NASA
1988 – Movie “Last Temptation of Christ” is released
1988 – Richard Thornburgh becomes US Attorney General

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Famous Birthdays

1620 – Pieter Cuypers, S Neth lawyer
1629 – Tsar Alexei I of Russia (d. 1676)
1829 – John Horace Forney, Major General (Confederate Army), (d. 1902)
1838 – Joseph Barnby, conductor/academic principal
1978 – Chris Chambers, American football player, born in Cleveland, Ohio
1979 – D.J. Houlton, American baseball player

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Famous Deaths

1935 – Friedrich Schottky, German mathematician (Schottky’s theorem), dies at 84
1944 – Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., brother of President John F. Kennedy (b. 1915)
1968 – Esther Forbes, American novelist (Johnny Tremain), dies at 76
2004 – Peter Woodthorpe, British actor (b. 1931)
2005 – Lakshman Kadirgamar, Sri Lankan politician (Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka), dies at 73
2010 – Richie Hayward, American musician and songwriter (Little Feat), dies from complications of liver cancer at 64

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Today in History for 11th August 2018

Historical Events

1860 – US’s 1st successful silver mill (Virginia City, Nev)
1942 – – Sept 30] SS begins exterminating 3,500 Jews in Zelov Lodz Poland
1965 – 6 day insurrection starts in Watts section of Los Angeles
1965 – Watts riots begin in Southeast Los Angeles, lasts 6 days
1976 – Race riot in Cape Town, South Africa; 17 die
1987 – France and Great-Britain send minesweepers to Persian Gulf

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Famous Birthdays

1807 – David R Atchison, President of USA on March 3rd 1849
1860 – Alfred Coville, French historian (Lesson etats de Normandie)
1929 – Alun Hoddinott, Bargoed Wales, composer (Floriture)
1956 – Pierre-Louis Lions, French mathematician
1964 – Hamish, rocker (The Pasedenas-Riding on the Train)
1984 – Katie Rees, American beauty pageant contestant

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Famous Deaths

1456 – Janos Hunyadi, Hungarian general strategist, dies at about 49
1464 – Nicholas van Cusa, philosopher/bishop of Brixen, dies
1794 – Jakob Friedrich Kleinknecht, German composer, dies at 72
1886 – Lydia Koidula, Estonian poet (b. 1843)
1988 – Anne Ramsey, American actress (Throw Mama from the Train), dies of cancer at 59
2009 – Eunice Shriver, sister of President John F. Kennedy and founder (Special Olympics), dies at 88

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Today in History for 10th August 2018

Historical Events

1497 – John Cabot tells King Henry VII of his trip to “Asia”
1500 – Portuguese sea captain Diego Diaz is first European to sight Madagascar
1664 – Austria and the Ottoman Empire sign the Peace of Vásvár
1877 – Big Hole River: Col John Gibbon murders Nez-Perce indians
1977 – USSR performs (underground) nuclear test
1991 – NFL sportscaster Paul Maquire suffers a heart attack at 53

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Famous Birthdays

1821 – Jay Cooke, American financier (d. 1905)
1882 – Max Kowalski, composer
1908 – Gabrielle Keiller, collector/golfer
1946 – James Reynolds, American actor (Days of our Lives), born in Oskaloosa, Kansas
1977 – Aaron Kamin, American musician (The Calling)
1980 – Kaysar Ridha, Iraqi-American reality TV contestant

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Famous Deaths

794 – Fastrada, 3rd wife of French King Charles the Great, dies at 30
1886 – Eduard Grell, German composer, dies at 85
1904 – Pierre M Waldeck-Rousseau, French foreign minister (Dreyfus), dies
1934 – John Kane, Scottish/US miner/painter, dies at 73
1987 – I W Able, CEO (United Steel Workers of America, 1965-77), dies at 87
1991 – Josef Lipski, Polish politician, dies

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Today in History for 9th August 2018

Historical Events

1842 – US-Canada border defined by Webster-Ashburton Treaty
1862 – Battle of Cedar Mountain [Slaughter’s Mountain], fought in Culpeper County, Virginia, Confederate victory (US Civil War)
1936 – Korean nationals representing Japan earn medals in the marathon at the Berlin Olympics; Sohn Kee-chung won gold and Nam Sung-yong bronze
1970 – Peruvian Airlines jet carrying 45 US exchange students explodes
1990 – 12 Arab leaders agree to send pan-Arab forces to protect Saudi Arabia
1999 – Charles Kennedy wins the race to succeed Paddy Ashdown as the leader of the Liberal Democrats, UK

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Famous Birthdays

1890 – Eino Kaila, Finnish psychologist/philosopher
1915 – Haim Alexander, composer
1938 – Dick Anthony Williams, actor (Our Family Honor), born in Chicago, Illinois
1971 – David Merritt, WLAF linebacker (Rhein Fire)
1972 – Elizabeth Vassey, actress (Emily Martin-All My Children), born in Raleigh, North Carolina
1974 – Tremayne Allen, tight end (Chicago Bears)

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Famous Deaths

1516 – Jeroen Bosch, painter (Garden of the Lusten), dies at 66
1919 – Ernst Haeckel, German philosopher (Social Darwinism), dies at 85
1938 – Leo Frobenius, German ethnologist and archaeologist (African cultures), dies at 65
1949 – Edward Thorndike, American psychologist (father of modern educational psychology), dies at 74
1955 – Marion Eugene Bauer, composer, dies at 57
1977 – Edward Chapman, British actor (Things to Come, Promoter, Rembrandt), dies at 75

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National Gallery: Nevada

National Gallery: Nevada

Rhys Griffiths

From the taming of the ‘Wild West’ to the lucrative wages of sin.

In October 1864, with the nation embroiled in civil war, the world’s longest telegram was dispatched west to east across the United States. Its content was the Constitution of Nevada and it was an urgent transmission: the Constitution – required for Nevada Territory to become a state – had originally been sent to Washington by post, but had not arrived. Anticipating Nevadan support, the incumbent president, Abraham Lincoln, was keen to grant statehood in time for a crucial election on 8 November, a deadline met with just days to spare on 31 October. This picture essay takes Nevada as a case study in which many of the broader themes of US history have played out: the taming of the ‘Wild West’; the displacement of native peoples; the pursuit of wealth; exploitation of the land; freedom and the federal system; the Atomic Age; boosters, bravado and, in the leisure pursuits for which the state enjoys notoriety, the lucrative wages of sin.THE STATE OF THINGSNevada’s statehood was controversial: according to the Northwest Ordinance of 1783, states required a population of at least 60,000. Nevada had under half that figure and many of its settlements – such as Ruby Hill, pictured above – were mining towns vulnerable to boom and bust. Destroyed by a storm in 1910, Ruby Hill became one of the state’s ghost towns. In the early 20th century, with population falling, critics questioned whether Nevada merited representation in Congress. Other calls to revoke statehood centred on questions of decency – or Nevada’s lack of it.FEELING LUCKY?‘Luck has shaped Nevada’, as the historian Michael Green puts it. Gambling is near synonymous with the state, but the original Constitution prohibited it, along with theatres, racetracks and cockfighting. Hoping to win big, the state legalised gambling in 1931, just as other states (including neighbouring California) were clamping down on it. The bright lights of Las Vegas were among its winnings.FADING FRONTIERFor those people for whom the New World was indeed new, Nevada was an arid, mountainous expanse of land to be crossed – often as quickly as possible. In the 16th century, the Spanish found nothing of interest in Nevada, which they named for the snowy mountain range which would later prove an obstacle to ‘Manifest Destiny’ – the 19th-century belief that America’s settlers were destined to expand across the continent. In 1846, pioneers trying to reach California, known as the Donner Party, became stranded in the Sierra Nevada, resorting to cannibalism to survive.THIS LAND IS YOUR LANDNevada has been described as ‘a laboratory for how Americans define freedom’. When settlers arrived, the land’s native peoples broadly comprised the Northern and Southern Paiute, Washoe and Western Shoshone people. In 1860, the Pyramid Lake War was fought between allied native forces and victorious US Army-backed settlers, who had been exerting their freedom by usurping Paiute grazing land and disrupting food supplies.GOD’S OWN COUNTRYFounded by Joseph Smith in New York in 1830, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints – the Mormons – were among Nevada’s earliest settlers, moving beyond then-US borders under the leadership of the ‘Mormon Moses’, Brigham Young. Built in 1855, the Mormon fort at Las Vegas is Nevada’s oldest surviving building. The Church established colonies throughout the ‘Mormon Corridor’, but with mass settlement came statehood and a ban on certain Mormon practices – see poster.THE HAND THAT FEEDSNevada’s history might seem driven by the illusion of luck, but the development of its infrastructure was not down to chance. Michael Green identifies another Nevada tradition: ‘supporting limited government while craving federal dollars to fund infrastructure and generate jobs’. The state’s highways – which, like the railway in the late 1860s, transformed the state, facilitating new towns and tourism – are one example of how Nevada has benefited from federal funds. In 1916 the Federal Aid Road Act encouraged states to establish a highway department by offering to match spending on new roads. Nevada spent $10 million on highway construction in 1926, partly funded by a gasoline tax. Grander federal projects followed.ROARING THIRTIESArguably the most recognisable project undertaken during President Roosevelt’s New Deal public works programme, the Hoover Dam – dubbed the ‘eighth wonder of the world’ – was built between 1931 and 1936 on the Colorado River at the Arizona-Nevada border. Boulder City, a federal town built by the government, was created to house the workers (whose wages were often spent in nearby Las Vegas). Surprisingly, the Great Depression could be seen as a boom period for Nevada, which received more money from the New Deal per resident than any other state.MOTHER LODEDiscovery of the Comstock Lode is a defining moment in Nevada’s history. A rich source of silver ore, it generated almost $300 million in the decades following 1859, earning Nevada its nickname ‘the Silver State’. Thousands of miners (and other entrepreneurs) arrived in the nearby boomtown, Virginia City; as the saying goes, fortunes could also be made ‘selling shovels’.MAN’S WORLDThe mining influx was overwhelmingly male. Pictured here, singer and dancer Fanny Hanks died in November 1893. Her obituary reveals a harsh story of boom and bust: ‘In her palmy days enthusiastic miners used to throw her gold’, but, ‘she married John Woodard, a worthless gambler, who was killed when he was found beating her’. Her popularity waning, she ‘lost her money in stocks’.ATOMICIn the 1950s, the US government began testing atomic weapons in Nevada. The first was dropped in 1951; 100 more would be tested at the Nevada Test Site before the explosions began to be detonated underground. The effect of the tests severely damaged Nevada’s relationship with the federal government, forging a legacy of mistrust: the increase of cases of cancer in local communities sat at odds with the government’s denial that bomb testing was dangerous.HEAVEN OR LAS VEGASLas Vegas first bloomed with dollars spent by workers on the nearby Hoover Dam. After they left, it was promoted as a frontier town with slogans like ‘The Old West in Modern Splendor’. The first resort opened on ‘the Strip’ – a stretch of road outside city limits – was El Rancho in April 1941. The rustic frontier image was soon eclipsed – under the influence of mobster ‘Bugsy’ Siegel – by the (gaudy) glitz which attracted Hollywood stars, the Rat Pack – and millions of less famous tourists.FOR A GOOD TIME, NOT A LONG TIMEWhat do André Breton, Jack Dempsey, Rita Hayworth, Bela Lugosi, General Douglas MacArthur, Norman Rockwell and Orson Welles have in common? They were all divorced in Reno. In the 20th century Nevada legitimised – and made unique selling points – of its insalubrious characteristics: this postcard reveals some of its various tourist lures. After 1931, divorce in Nevada required just six weeks’ residency in the state; more than enough time to enjoy the city’s other attractions.

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Today in History for 8th August 2018

Historical Events

936 – German king Otto I the Great crowned
1900 – 1st Davis Cup tennis competition, named after Dwight Filley Davis, began at Longwood Cricket Club in Mass, and won by US 2 days later
1911 – Public Law 62-5 sets the number of representatives in the United States House of Representatives at 435. The law would come into effect in 1913.
1938 – 6th Venice Film Festival opens
1946 – Dreyfuss family, owners of Pittsburgh Pirates since 1900, sells club to Frank McKinney and John Galbreath for $25 million
1983 – Jury in KC, Mo, awards TV anchorwoman Christine Craft $500,000 in sex discrimination suit against KMBC-TV (later overturned)

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Famous Birthdays

1653 – Jacques Basnage, French/Neth historian/vicar
1819 – Charles Anderson Dana, Asst Secy War, (Union) (d. 1897)
1823 – Theodule Augustin Ribot, painter
1939 – Philip E Baisley, Augusta Va, singer (Statler Bros-Class of ’57)
1957 – Nancy Glass, TV broadcaster (American Journal)
1965 – Akitoshi Saito, wrestler (NJPW)

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Famous Deaths

1705 – Willem Roukens, mayor (Nimegen ort Nimeguen), beheaded
1747 – Madeleine de Verchères, New France heroine (b. 1678)
1788 – Louis FAD Duke the Richelieu, French marshal, dies at 92
1940 – Johnny Dodds, American early jazz clarinetist, dies at 48
1965 – Olga Fastrová, Czech writer and editor (National Policy), dies at 89
1975 – Julian “Cannonball” Alderly, saxophonist/bandleader, dies of a stroke at 46

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Today in History for 7th August 2018

Historical Events

1948 – American swimmer Jimmy McLane wins the 1,500m for his 2nd gold medal at the London Olympics (4 x 200m freestyle relay); marks a US clean sweep of every men’s swimming gold medal at the Games
1948 – 1st Dutch government of Beel resigns
1955 – KSTF TV channel 10 in Scottsbluff-Gering, NB (CBS/NBC) begins
1959 – The Lincoln Memorial design on the U.S. penny goes into circulation. It replaces the “sheaves of wheat” design
1981 – “The Washington Star” ceases all operations after 128 years of publication
2004 – Cubs pitcher Greg Maddux enters the history books with his 300th career win in the Chicago’s 8-4 triumph v San Francisco at SBC Park

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Famous Birthdays

1867 – Emil Nolde, [Hansen], German painter and graphic artist
1876 – Mata Hari [Margaretha Geertruida Zelle], Dutch exotic dancer, courtesan and convicted German WWI spy, born in Leeuwarden, Netherlands (d. 1917)
1929 – Don Larsen, American MLB pitcher (NY Yankees), born on what must have been a perfect day in Michigan City, Indiana
1939 – Anjanette Comer, American actress (Baby, Lepke), born in Dawson, Texas
1955 – Wayne Knight, American actor
1983 – Tina O’Brien, British actress, born in Manchester, England

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Famous Deaths

1916 – Charles E Manning, Australian judge/major, dies in battle at 36
1943 – Gustav Schmidt, German lt-general, dies in battle
1967 – Max Tak, Dutch violinist/radio commentator, dies at 75
1990 – Eva Sully Block, actress (Kid Millions), dies of heart failure at 88
1992 – John Anderson, American actor (Psycho, Ride the High Country, Legend of Wyatt Earp), dies of heart attack at 69
2007 – Hal Fishman, Los Angeles based local news anchor. (b. 1931)

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