This day in history...

Discussion in 'New Roundtable' started by shane0911, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    On February 28, 1953, Cambridge University scientists James D. Watson and Francis H.C. Crick announce that they have determined the double-helix structure of DNA, the molecule containing human genes. DNA was actually discovered in 1869, but its crucial role in determining genetic inheritance wasn’t demonstrated until much later. Watson and Crick determined that the structure of DNA was a double-helix polymer, or a spiral of two DNA strands, each containing a long chain of monomer nucleotides, wound around each other. According to their findings, DNA replicated itself by separating into individual strands, each of which became the template for a new double helix. In his best-selling book, The Double Helix (1968), Watson later claimed that Crick announced the discovery by walking into the nearby Eagle Pub and blurting out that “we had found the secret of life.” The pair would win a Nobel Prize for their discovery.
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    On February 28, 1993 in Waco, Texas, agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms launch a raid against the Branch Davidian compound as part of an investigation into illegal possession of firearms and explosives by the Christian cult. As the agents attempted to penetrate the complex, gunfire erupted, beginning an extended gun battle that left four ATF agents dead and 15 wounded. Six Branch Davidians were fatally wounded, and several more were injured, including David Koresh, the cult’s founder and leader. After 45 minutes of shooting, the ATF agents withdrew, and a cease-fire was negotiated over the telephone. But a stand-off between the Branch Davidians, the ATF and later the FBI, would follow, which didn't end until a teargas assault on April 18 led to a fire that burned the compound to the ground. Koresh and at least 80 of his followers, including 22 children, died in that assault.

    On February 28, 1983, 77% of Americans watching TV that night are tuned in to the final episode of M*A*S*H as it bows out after 11 seasons, with a special two-and-a-half hour episode. It is the largest percentage ever to watch a single TV show up to that time. Set near Seoul, Korea, behind the American front lines during the Korean War, M*A*S*H was based on the 1968 novel by Richard Hooker and the 1970 film directed by Robert Altman, and depicted events at a Mobile Army Surgical Hospital, a concept introduced by the army during that war. M*A*S*H survived low ratings in its first season to become one of the most successful sitcoms in TV history, winning 14 Emmys, 9 Golden Globes and 7 Director's Guild Awards. It also won the Humanitas Award (presented for film and television writing intended to promote human dignity, meaning, and freedom) 4 times. LKF: the decision to end the series after 11 seasons was left entirely to a vote of the 7 principle cast members. The vote was 4-3. The short-lived sequel AfterM*A*S*H was developed to satisfy the cast members (Harry Morgan as Col. Potter, Jaime Farr as Sgt. Klinger and William Christopher as Fr. Mulcahy) who voted to continue the show.
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  2. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    Not very many opportunities for notable events on February 29.....

    On February 29, 1904, the settlement of Deerfield, Massachusetts is attacked and burned to the ground by a force of soldiers and French and Native American force. Some 100 men, women, and children are massacred. It is the bloodiest event of the second French and Indian War.

    On February 29, 1940, Gone with the Wind is honored with eight Oscars by the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The epic Southern romance set during the Civil War swept the prestigious Best Picture, Director, Screenplay, Cinematography, Art Direction, Film Editing, and Actress categories. Perhaps most notably, Hattie McDaniel wins the Best Supporting Actress Award for her portrayal of the housemaid “Mammy." McDaniel is first African American actress or actor to win an Oscar.


    On February 29, 1980, Jerry Allen, sheriff of Cerro Gordo County, Iowa, is inventorying evidence when he comes across a sealed manilla envelope marked "rec'd April 7, 1959." He opens it and find a remarkable relic of rock and roll history, the trademark eyeglasses Buddy Holly was wearing when he died in a plane crash nearby on February 3, 1959, along with fellow rockers Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper. The glasses had been notably absent when Holly's body and personal effects were recovered and presumed destroyed. In fact, they had been thrown clear in the crash and lost in the snow. An unidentified person found them when the snow melted and turned them in to the sheriff's office, along with the Big Bopper's watch, which was also in the envelope. The glasses were sent to Holly's widow.
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    Last edited: Feb 29, 2020
  3. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    On March 1, 1932, the nation is shocked by the kidnapping of 20-month old Charles Lindbergh, Jr. The son of the famed aviator - still being lauded as an American hero at the time for his 1927 solo flight across the Atlantic - was taken from the family's new mansion in Hopewell, NJ; the kidnapper leaving a ransom note demanding $50,000. Three days into a fruitless search, a second ransom note is mailed to the Lindbergh's demanding $70,000. This time Charles Sr and his wife Anne capitulate, dropping off the money and receiving instructions to find the baby on a boat off the Massachusetts coast. But there's no child; there's not even a boat. Shortly afterward, the child's body is found less than a mile from the mansion, apparently killed the night of the kidnapping. The break in the case finally comes in 1934, when a man pays for gas with a bill marked from the ransom. It leads to German immigrant carpenter Bruno Hauptmann, who is found to have a large sum of the marked ransom money. That and handwriting evidence used on the ransom notes gets Hauptmann convicted and executed. In the aftermath, kidnapping, heretofore a local crime, is made a federal offense.

    On March 1, 1917, newspapers around the country publish the text of the so-called Zimmermann Telegram. It is a message sent in January by Arthur Zimmerman, the German foreign secretary, to Count Johann von Bernstorff, German Ambassador to Mexico. The telegram, intercepted by British intelligence and forwarded to President Woodrow Wilson on February 26, instructs von Bernstorff to propose an alliance to the Mexican government in the case of war between the US and Germany. The Germans offer immediate financial aid to Mexico in exchange for the alliance and a promise to restore territories in Texas, New Mexico and Arizona to Mexico if the Germans win. The release of the telegram ends virtually all opposition to US involvement in World War I, except for the staunchest isolationists, and even they cave when Zimmerman himself confirms the authenticity of the telegram two days later. An American declaration of war on Germany is only a month away.
     
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  4. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    On March 2, 1836, Texas declares its independence from Mexico.

    On March 2, 1807, The U.S. Congress passes an act to “prohibit the importation of slaves into any port or place within the jurisdiction of the United States…from any foreign kingdom, place, or country.” The act effectively ended the business of capturing Africans and transporting them into the US as slaves, but by this point, an estimated 4 million adults are living in slavery in the US, almost exclusively in the South. With the children of slaves automatically enslaved itself, America has a self-sustaining slave population.

    On March 2, 1962, Philadelphia Warriors center Wilt Chamberlain scores 100 points against the New York Knicks, breaking his own single game scoring record of 78, set earlier in the season.


    On March 2, 1904, Theodor Geisel, who will write and illustrate more than 60 books - mostly for children - under the pen name, Dr. Seuss, is born in Springfield, Massachusetts. His books have sold more than 600 million copies and been translated into more than 20 languages.
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  5. Bengal B

    Bengal B Founding Member

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    Chamberlain averaged 50.4 points and 24.3 per game for that 1962 season.
     
  6. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    On March 3, 1931, President Herbert Hoover signs a congressional act making “The Star-Spangled Banner” the official national anthem of the United States. Until then, the US had no official anthem; events where an official patriotic song would be played were most likely to use "Hail Columbia" until 1931.

    On March 3, 1974, a DC-10 jet crashes into a forest outside of Paris, France, killing all 346 people on board. Investigators determined that the rear hatch door blew off due to a faulty latching mechanism, causing a loss of cabin pressure. Its the 2nd time in 2 years a DC-10 has experienced a problem due to the latch; the pilot of an American Airlines flight was able to bring the first plane down safely in Detroit. It wasn't until the fatal crash, however, that McDonnell Douglas recalled all DC-10s to fix the latch problem.

    Shortly after midnight on March 3, 1991, Los Angeles resident George Holliday is toying with his new video camera on his apartment balcony when he notices a disturbance unfolding on a nearby road. He starts taping, and 89 seconds later, LAPD has a major scandal on its hands. Holliday taped several white police officers beating a black man, later identified as Rodney King. King, who was intoxicated, led officers in a car chase and once stopped, was slow to comply with directions. One shot him with a Taser, but King fought off its effects and charged the officers, leading to the scuffle that Holliday taped, and then sold to a local TV station, which in turn sold it to CNN. Charges were brought against four officers, but the high profile of the case thanks to the video forced a change of venue. When the officers were acquitted (in April, 1992) angry L.A. African Americans rioted, killing 60 people, with more than 2,000 injured and nearly a billion dollars in property damaged over 3 days. A year later, a federal jury convicted Officer Lawrence Powell, who most aggressively beat King, and Sergeant Stacey Koon, who was the senior officer present and did nothing to stop the beating, with violating King's civil rights. They were sentenced to 2 and a half years, and LAPD was ordered to pay King $3.8 million in damages.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2020
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  7. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    Until the 20th Amendment changed it to January 20 in 1937, March 4 was Inauguration Day

    On March 4, 1932, Franklin D. Roosevelt is inaugurated. He will be re-elected 3 times, but passed away a year into his fourth term. In 1951, passage of the 22nd Amendment will limit future presidents to 2 consecutive terms, meaning FDR will hold the presidential record for most consecutive days in office, and likely the record for most days in office overall, for all time.

    On March 4, 1829, Andrew Jackson celebrates his inauguration with one hell of a party - its practically a frat kegger. Open house at the White House is the Inauguration Day tradition at the time, but this one is way over the top. More than 20,000 show up, turning the usually dignified White House into a boisterous mob scene. Some guests stood on furniture in muddy shoes while others rummaged through rooms looking for the president–breaking dishes, crystal and grinding food into the carpet along the way. (White House staff reported the carpets smelled of cheese for months after the party.) In an attempt to draw party goers out of the building, servants set up washtubs full of juice and whiskey on the White House lawn. The open house tradition continued until several assassination attempts heightened security concerns. Grover Cleveland suspended the tradition in 1885, opting for hosting a parade which he viewed from a grandstand in front of the White House.

    On March 4, 1966, the voice of the Beatles, John Lennon, gives an interview in the London Evening Standard in which he comments on the waning importance of religion. The full quote is this: "Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink….We’re (the Beatles) more popular than Jesus now.” The comment caused no fuss at all with the Standard's readers, but several months later, American teenybopper mag DATEbook printed the closing remark, "We're more popular than Jesus." It did not sit well at all with many Americans, especially in the Bible Belt, where many radio stations began boycotting the Beatles. A Birmingham, AL station set up Beatle paraphernalia collection points, planning to hold a "Beatle burning." Several stations actually did burn Beatles records, shocking the peace-loving Lennon. He would soon apologize, not for the comment in and of itself (he would insist he was neither anti-God or anti-Christian; he was just making the point that he thought Christianity was in decline), but for "creating another little piece of hate in the world."
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  8. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    On the cold, snowy night of March 5, 1770, a mob of American colonists begins taunting the British soldiers guarding Customs House in Boston, in protest of the British occupation of the city. When Captain Thomas Preston, the commanding officer at the Customs House, sends more men into the street, the colonists begin throwing snowballs and other objects at the soldiers. Private Hugh Montgomery is hit with an object and accidentally fires his musket into the crowd. Other soldiers hear the sound of the shot and also fire. When the smoke clears, five colonists are dead or dying—Crispus Attucks, Patrick Carr, Samuel Gray, Samuel Maverick and James Caldwell—and three more are injured. Word of the incident spreads quickly, and it is dubbed "the Boston Massacre." The anger is stirred even further with the circulation of Paul Revere's illustration, depicting an organized group of soldiers seemingly firing under orders.
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    On March 5, 1946, Winston Churchill gives a name to the new enemy of freedom, when he says,“From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the continent.” The former British Prime Minister was speaking at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri when he gave the line, denouncing the European policies of the Soviet Union. The phrase "Iron Curtain" will come to refer to the influence and oppression of communism throughout the Cold War.

    On March 5, 1966, "The Ballad of the Green Berets" by Staff Sergeant Barry Sadler, hits #1 on the Billboard Pop Music Chart. America's youth have been gobbling up counterculture and anti-Vietnam music for a couple of years, but this is a complete 180. Sadler is exactly as the title suggests, an active-duty sergeant in the U.S. Army Special Forces, the Green Berets. He was also an aspiring songwriter, and while convalescing after a severe training accident injury, he wrote "The Ballad of the Green Beret." Its not pro-war, but it catches the attention of those tiring of the anti-war movement. Sadler recorded the 12-verse song himself just to distribute among the military. But an RCA Records exec heard it and expressed interest. Helped by author Robin Moore to whittle the original down to a more-radio friendly length, Sadler recorded it again, and the record went platinum (1,000,000 copies sold) within 2 weeks of its release.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2020
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  9. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    On March 6, 1836, more than a thousand Mexican troops under the command of General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna storm and capture the Alamo, killing all but a handful of its 200 defenders. Texan rebel forces under the command of James Bowie and William Travis occupied the mission near present-day San Antonio the previous December in the fight for Texan independence from Mexico. Santa Anna arrived on February 23 and immediately put the Alamo under seige. After 13 days of sporadic but ineffectual fighing, the Mexicans storm the mission and wipe out its defenders in about 90 minutes of fighting.
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    On March 6, 1857, the U.S. Supreme Court rules in the case of Sanford v. Dred Scott that slaves are property and not entitled to basic human rights. Scott was a slave owned by Missouri Dr. John Emerson, who moved to Illinois - a free state under the terms of the Missouri Compromise - but later returned to Missouri before his death in 1846. After Emerson's death, Scott sued for his freedom, arguing that he had lived as a resident of a free state. As the case made its way through the Missouri courts, Scott's ownership fell to New York resident J.F.A. Sanford, bringing state's diversity into the matter and sending it into the federal court system.

    On March 6, 1981, CBS Evening News anchor Walter Cronkite utters his trademark sign off, "And that's the way it is," for the final time, retiring from the anchor's seat at age 65. Over the previous 19 years, Cronkite had established himself not only as the nation's leading newsman but as "the most trusted man in America," a steady presence during nearly one of America's most turbulent eras. He died in 2009.
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  10. mctiger

    mctiger RIP, and thanks for the music Staff Member

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    On March 7, 1876, 29-year-old Alexander Graham Bell receives a patent for his revolutionary new invention–the telephone. Bell is a Scottish-born immigrant and teacher at a school for the deaf in Boston. It was there he became intrigued with Samuel Morse invention of the telegraph, making instant communication possible over long distances. But it had its drawbacks; only one message could be sent at a time, and a messenger was still required to deliver the hand-written message from the telegraph station to the recipient. With the help of a local machine shop employee, Thomas A. Watson, Bell developed a prototype that could transmit the vibrations of sound waves from one device to another. Three days after receiving his patent, Bell's famous first message - "Mr. Watson, come here, I need you" is successfully transmitted.
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    On March 7, 1965, civil rights demonstrators in Selma, Alabama, are attacked and beaten by white state troopers and sheriff’s deputies. The day's events became known as "Bloody Sunday." The demonstrators had planned to march from Selma to Montgomery - about 54 miles - to commemorate the recent shooting of a black church deacon by a state trooper. But they were met by police just outside Selma and ordered to disperse. When they attempted to continue, police responded with teargas, billy club and bullwhips. Dozens were injured. More to come....

    On March 7, 1936, Nazi leader Adolph Hitler sends troops into the Rhineland of western Germany, occupying the demilitarized zone in violation of the Treaty of Versailles.
     

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