Wednesday, September 22, 2004

This Day in History

This Day in History:

1241: Snorri Sturluson is murdered at home in Reykholt, Iceland by son-in-law Gissur Torvaldson and other relatives, seventy armed men total, under authority of King Haakon of Norway
1554: Coronado dies without finding the cities of gold
1598: Ben Jonson indicted for manslaughter
1692: Eight "witches" of Salem (Martha Corey, Mary Easty, Alice Parker, Ann Pudeator, Margaret Scott, Wilmot "Mammy" Redd, Samuel Wardwell and Mary Parker) are executed, becoming the last people to be hanged for witchcraft in the United States
1776: Nathan Hale executed for spying on the British
1791: Michael Farraday, discoverer of electromagnetic induction, is born
1827: Joseph Smith, son of an impoverished New England farmer, announces he has received golden plates from an angel, from which he will translate the Book of Mormon
1828: Shaka Zulu assassinated
1869: Wagner's Das Rheingold debuts in Munich
1888: Franz Schubert is exhumed
1902: Three days shy of his fifth birthday, William Faulkner moves with his family to Oxford, Mississippi
1914: German U-Boat U-9 destroys three British cruisers, killing more than 1400 sailors
1927: Jack Dempsey loses on long count; Baseball legend Tommy Lasorda is born
1946: King Sunny Ade, reggae singer, is born
1949: The Soviet Union detonates its first nuclear weapon
1957: Nick Cave, archetypal moody rocker, is born
1960: Joan Jett, archetypal female rocker, is born; Mali gains independence from France
1961: Scott Baio, anti-Christ rocker (see Joanie Loves Chachi) is born; President Kennedy signs legislation establishing the Peace Corps
1962: Bob Dylan first performs at Carnegie Hall
1964: My secret girlfriend, Bonnie Hunt, is born
1975: Sarah Jane Moore arrested for attempted assassination of President Ford
1980: Iran-Iraq War begins; Solidarity Party forms in Poland
1985: The first Farm Aid takes place in Champaign, Illinois
1990: 101-year-old composer Irving Berlin dies in New York City
2003: Gordon Jump, unjustly remembered as the Maytag repairman when his true triumph was as station manager Arthur Carlson on WKRP in Cincinnati, passes on to the great transmitter in the sky

This day is also the autumnal equinox (AKA the first day of autumn), a traditional pagan harvest festival, and the ninth and final day of the Eleusinian Mysteries of Ancient Greece. It's the birthday of my elementary school classmate Steve Nowland, my cousin Michelle, my Odyssey classmate Barnaby Rapaport and my one-time babysitter Mary Wolters.

And, of course, thirty-four years ago today I was born. You knew there was a reason I put you through all that, right?

ADDENDUM: I just learned that the U.S. hostage just slain, Jack Hensley, also would have had a birthday today. Sobering; all condolences to those who knew and loved him.


Post a Comment

<< Home