Tuesday, June 01, 2010

POPnews - June 1st

[Lou Gehrig was still five years away from considering himself the luckiest man in baseball when millions of cards just like these found their way into millions of grubby little hands; the cause he's stumping for here, the Knot Hole League, no longer seems to exist, while its mantle has been taken up by the Knothole Gang (which encourages attendance at minor league games by families with preteens) and of course by the Little League.]

193 CE - Roman Emperor Didius Julianus was assassinated just 64 days after succeeding Pertinax, making him the second to serve during the Year of the Five Emperors. He himself was succeeded by Septimius Severus, and I think you can guess how that went...

1215 - Beijing - then under the control of the Jurchen Emperor Xuanzong of Jin - was captured by the Mongols under Genghis Khan, ending the Battle of Beijing.

1283 - Duke Rudolph II of Austria waived his right to the duchies of Austria and Styria under the terms of the Treaty of Rheinfelden.

1495 - Friar John Cor recorded the first known batch of scotch whisky.

1533 - Anne Boleyn was crowned Queen of England in a lavish ceremony at Westminster Abbey.

1660 - Quaker Mary Dyer was hanged for defying a law banning those of her faith from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Because that's what Jesus would have done.

1779 - During the American Revolutionary War, Benedict Arnold was court-martialed for malfeasance.  From an American perspective, however, the worst was yet to come; the event which made his name synonymous with treason - the so-called Betrayal at West Point - didn't occur until July 1780.

1792 - Kentucky became the 15th US state.

1796 - Tennessee became the 16th US state.

1831 - James Clark Ross discovered the North Magnetic Pole.

1868 - The Treaty of Bosque Redondo was signed at Fort Sumner, allowing the Navajo to return to their lands in Arizona and New Mexico.

Photobucket1879 - France's Prince Imperial Napoleon Eugene was killed in battle during the Anglo-Zulu War, thwarting any hope the Bonaparte Dynasty might have had about regaining the throne once held by his father, Napoleon III. The only child of the king and his famous consort Eugénie, the young man still referred to as Napoleon IV in monarchist circles, was seemingly dogged by a death wish, having also come under fire during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-1871. Still, what's an heir in exile to do? Well, he could have married Queen Victoria's youngest daughter, Princess Beatrice, or even the Spanish infanta María del Pilar, daughter of Queen Isabella II... Instead he enrolled in the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, following which he accepted a commission into the Royal Artillery, and went and got his fool self blasted to bits.

1922 - The Royal Ulster Constabulary was founded, headquartered in Belfast.

1925 - Owing to a change in lineup by New York Yankees manager Miller Huggins, Lou Gehrig took to the field as a pinch hitter for Paul 'Pee Wee' Wanninger, whereupon he proceeded to play the first in a streak of 2,130 consecutive games; at 14 years' duration, it would be the longest such feat of endurance in professional baseball history until it was broken by Cal Ripken Jr. of the Baltimore Orioles in September 1995.

1941 - Battle of Crete - codenamed Unternehmen Merkur, or Operation Mercury - ended as Crete capitulated to Nazi Germany 12 days after the invasion by the 7th Flieger Division began.

Photobucket1943 - British Overseas Airways Corporation Flight 777 was shot down over the Bay of Biscay by 8 German Junkers Ju 88s, killing all 17 passengers and crew aboard, including actor Leslie Howard; almost immediately the crash led to speculation that the aircraft was downed in an attempt to kill British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, but in fact the Luftwaffe may have actually been gunning for Howard, who was not only an effective propaganda tool and Jewish, but may have been a British spy as well. Howard's early death, while cutting his career short, seems to have preserved the films he'd already made - including such beloved cinematic spectacles as Of Human Bondage (1934), The Petrified Forest (1936), and Gone with the Wind (1939) - in a kind of sentimental amber.

1974 - At the so-called Flixborough disaster an explosion at a chemical plant in the north of England killed 28 people.

1980 - Ted Turner's Cable News Network began broadcasting, thus beginning both the 24-hour news cycle and the stupidification of the media continued to this day by such outlets as Fox.

2001 - During the Dolphinarium massacre a Hamas suicide bomber named Hassan Khutari killed 21 people and injured more than 100 at a youth disco in Tel Aviv.

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