Monday, October 04, 2010

POPnews - October 4th

[It took Gutzon Borglum and then his son Lincoln Borglum a total of 14 years to carve Mount Rushmore, during which time Jeff Daniels, Nick Nolte, Robin Williams, and Sam Waterston must have gotten pretty bored, judging by their facial expressions in the finished product.]

1209 - Otto IV was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by Pope Innocent III.

1363 - At the end of the Battle of Lake Poyang the Chinese rebel forces of Zhu Yuanzhang defeated those of his rival, Chen Youliang, in one of the largest naval battles in history.

1636 - The Swedish Army, led by Johan Banér, defeated those of Saxony and the Holy Roman Empire at the Battle of Wittstock.

1777 - At the Battle of Germantown, a rag-tag militia under George Washington was repelled by the British soldiers (and Hessian mercenaries) of Sir William Howe.

1779 - The Fort Wilson Riot took place when an angry mob marched on the house of James Wilson, who barricaded himself inside with 35 of his colleagues.

1824 - Mexico enacted its new constitution, making it a republic.

1830 - Belgium gained its independence from The Netherlands.

1876 - Texas A&M University opened as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas, becoming the state's first public institution of higher education.

1883 - The Orient Express made its initial run between Paris and Istanbul.

1910 - As a prelude to revolution, warships battered the royal palace in Lisbon, causing King Manuel II and his family to flee into exile in the United Kingdom; the following day Portugal's First Republic was declared with the writer Teófilo Braga as President.

1918 - An explosion killed more than 100 and destroyed the T.A. Gillespie Company Shell Loading Plant in Sayreville, New Jersey; fires and explosions continued for three days, forcing massive evacuations and spreading ordnance over a wide area, pieces of which were still being found in 2007.

1927 - Gutzon Borglum began work on Mount Rushmore.

1931 - Chester Gould's iconic comic strip Dick Tracy first appeared.

1950 - Snoopy made his first appearance in Charles Schulz's iconic comic strip Peanuts two days after the strip debuted, although he wouldn't be named until November 10th.

1957 - Sputnik 1 - the first man-made object to orbit the Earth - was launched; it remained aloft for 22 days until its battery power was expended, after which it burnt up falling to Earth.

1965 - Paul VI became the first Pope to visit the US when he arrived in New York City.

1966 - Basutoland became independent from the United Kingdom, and was renamed Lesotho.

1967 - Omar Ali Saifuddin III of Brunei abdicated in favour of his son, His Majesty Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, who reigns to this day.

2004 - SpaceShipOne captured the Ansari X Prize.
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