Saturday, 28 February 2015

February 28, 2015

190 years ago
1825


Diplomacy
The United Kingdom and Russia signed a treaty in London settling the border between Canada and Alaska, then a Russian possession.

130 years ago
1885


Business
American Telephone and Telegraph Company was incorporated in New York as the subsidiary of American Bell Telephone.

100 years ago
1915


Born on this date
Zero Mostel
. U.S. actor. Samuel Joel Mostel was best known for his comic roles in Broadway plays, winning Tony Awards for his starring performances in Rhinoceros (1961); A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962); and Fiddler on the Roof (1964). In the early 1950s, Mr. Mostel was accused of being a Communist, and was blacklisted from making movies for several years. His best-known movies came in a reprise of his Broadway role in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966) and The Producers (1968). Mr. Mostel died of an apparent aortic aneurysm on September 8, 1977 at the age of 62.

Ketti Frings. U.S. author. Mrs. Frings, born Katherine Hartley, was best known for her novel Hold Back the Dawn (1940) and her play--based on Thomas Wolfe's novel--Look Homeward, Angel (1957), which won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1958. She died of cancer at the age of 65 on February 11, 1981, 17 days before her 66th birthday.

Peter Medawar. Brazilian-born U.K. biologist. Sir Peter shared the 1960 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Frank Burnet of Australia "for discovery of acquired immunological tolerance." He died on October 2, 1987 at the age of 72.

90 years ago
1925


Died on this date
Friedrich Ebert, 54
. Chancellor of Germany, 1918-1919; 1st President of Germany, 1919-1925. Mr. Ebert, leader of the Social Democratic Party, became Chancellor as Kaiser Wilhelm II was fleeing for the Netherlands, and took office as provisional President on February 11, 1919, and retained the position after the new constitution came into effect in August 1919. He cooperated with nationalist groups in suppressing worker uprisings, which made him a figure of controversy. Mr. Ebert died of septic shock after an emergency appendectomy.

Disasters
The Charlevoix-Kamouraska earthquake, measuring 6.2 on the moment magnitude scale, struck northeastern North America. It was felt most strongly in Quebec, where there were no fatalities, but damage to buildings. 55 aftershocks were recorded.

80 years ago
1935


Died on this date
Chiquinha Gonzaga, 87
. Brazilian musician. Miss Gonzaga was a prominent pianist who composed pieces for piano, as well as theatrical works.

Technology
Gerard Berchet, working under the direction of Wallace Carothers, an organic chemist at the DuPont Experimental Station laboratory near Wilmington, Delaware, first produced the substance that would come to be known as nylon.

75 years ago
1940


On television today
The first live telecast of a basketball game occurred when a college match between Fordham University and the University of Pittsburgh at Madison Square Garden was broadcast by the experimental station W2XBS to several hundred homes in New York. There was a 20-minute blackout due to technical problems.

Americana
U.S. population was reported at 131,669,275, with 12,865,518 Negroes (9.8%).

War
The U.S.S.R. gave Finland 48 hours to respond to its peace proposal. Soviet forces fought to within 7 miles of the Finnish city of Viborg.

World events
The United Kingdom announced a curb on Jewish land purchases in agricultural areas of Palestine.

Economics and finance
The U.S. House of Representatives passed and sent to conference a bill providing for a $100-million increase in the lending authority of the Import-Export Bank.

Disasters
Floods in northern California from Tehchapi to the Oregon state line marooned 4,000 people and caused $1 million in damages.

70 years ago
1945


Hit parade
#1 single in Australia (Kent Music Report): Amor, Amor--Bing Crosby (1st month at #1)

At the movies
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, starring Joan Blondell, Peggy Ann Garner, and James Dunn, received its premiere screening in New York.

Literature
Richard Wright's autobiography Black Boy was published.

War
The Korean provisional government in Chungking, not yet recognized by any nation, declared war on Germany in order to participate in the founding conference of the United Nations in San Francisco. U.S. troops in Germany crossed the Erft River, the last natural obstacle before the Rhine River, in the vicinity of Sindorf. Soviet troops in Germany seized the Pomeranian rail centre of Neustettin. American forces in the Philippines landed on Palawan and quickly seized control of vital points without much opposition. U.S. Marines pushed forward on Iwo Jima, reaching the uncompleted northern air strip.

Diplomacy
U.S. charge d'affaires in Chungking George Atcheson sent a telegram to the U.S. State Department criticizing the Chinese Nationalist government as ineffectual, and urging more even-handed treatment of the Communists. The cable provoked a bitter conflict between the State Department's "China hands" and U.S. Army General Patrick Hurley, U.S. adviser to the Nationalist government.

The British House of Commons approved the decisions taken on Poland at the recent Yalta Conference.

Egyptian and Turkish representatives signed the United Nations declaration in Washington.

At the Inter-American Conference in Mexico City, the U.S.A. proposed a plan to guarantee hemispheric boundaries and an assurance that it would take action with Latin American states against any nation attacking their territorial integrity.

Defense
U.S. Army Air Forces commanding General Hap Arnold revealed that the Army's first jet-propelled combat plane, the P-80 Shooting Star, was in production.

Economics and finance
The U.S. State Department reached a Lend-Lease agreement with France to provide the latter with immediate and postwar reconstruction aid.

Labour
The U.S. National War Labor Board granted a wage increase of $2-$4 per week to 21,250 telephone employees in New York City, Louisville, Washington, and Memphis.

60 years ago
1955


Hit parade
#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): Jim, Johnny & Jonas--Hula Hawaiian Quartett (2nd month at #1)

On television tonight
Sherlock Holmes, starring Ronald Howard and H. Marion Crawford
Tonight's episode: The Case of the Careless Suffragette

40 years ago
1975


Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand: I Can Help--Billy Swan (4th week at #1)

#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): I Can Help--Billy Swan

#1 single in Switzerland: I Can Help--Billy Swan (5th week at #1)

Television
It was reported that Jim Johnston, anchorman of the evening newscast at CFCN in Calgary, had resigned on the air in protest of the station's decision to reduce the newscast's time for one evening that week by 5 minutes, with the final 5 minutes being handed over to Alberta's governing Progressive Conservative Party for a free political advertisement. A provincial election was scheduled for March 25.

Diplomacy
Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau began a 16-day European tour aimed at closer ties with the European Economic Community.

Politics and government
The Canadian House of Commons passed a bill to allow for a second MP to represent the Northwest Territories, effective the next federal election. The N.W.T. was currently represented by Wally Firth of the New Democratic Party, elected in 1972 and re-elected in 1974.

Disasters
An underground train failed to stop at Moorgate terminus station in London and crashed into the end of the tunnel, killing 43 people.

Baseball
The Chicago Cubs traded relief pitcher Dave LaRoche and outfielder Brock Davis to the Cleveland Indians for relief pticher Milt Wilcox. Mr. LaRoche had posted a record of 5-6 with 5 saves and an earned run average of 4.79 in 1974. Mr. Wilcox was 2-2 with 4 saves and an ERA of 4.69 in 1974. Mr. Davis, a major league veteran, spent the 1974 season in the Texas League, and his contract was transferred from Midland to San Antonio.

The San Francisco Giants sold left fielder-first baseman-third baseman Dave Kingman to the New York Mets for an estimated $125,000. In 1974, he batted .223 with 18 home runs and 55 runs batted in in 121 games. In four seasons with the Giants, Mr. Kingman batted .224 with 77 homers and 217 RBIs.

30 years ago
1985


Terrorism
The Provisional Irish Republican Army carried out a mortar attack on the Royal Ulster Constabulary police station at Newry, killing nine officers in the highest loss of life for the RUC on a single day.

Crime
Publisher Ernst Zundel was convicted in Toronto for distributing hate literature in a book that said the mass extermination of Jews in Germany in World War II never occurred.

25 years ago
1990


Hit parade
#1 single in Sweden (Topplistan): Nothing Compares 2 U--Sinéad O'Connor (2nd week at #1)

Personal
This blogger concluded a two-month term as museum assistant at Musee Heritage Museum in St. Albert, Alberta. It was an interesting and enjoyable job, and I was sorry to leave.

Diplomacy
South African Zulu chief Mangosuthu Gatsha Buthelezi met with U.S. President George Bush in Washington and called on him to lift economic sanctions against South Africa.

Hockey
NHL
Edmonton 2 @ Los Angeles 4

Because of fights mainly consisting of players milling around and waltzing, this may have been the longest game I’ve ever seen that was completed in regulation time.

20 years ago
1995


War
Ecuador and Peru signed the Montevideo Declaration, "reiterating their commitment to proceed to an immediate and effective ceasefire," and effectively ending the month-old Cenepa War.

Crime
Raul Salinas de Gortari, brother of former Mexican President Carlos Salinas de Gortari, was indicted for the September 1994 murder of Jose Francisco Ruiz Massieu, deputy leader of the country's governing Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Carlos Salinas de Gortari's term as President had expired in December 1994.

Scandal
A judicial report on sexual abuse of boys at Kingsclear Training Centre in New Brunswick was released; it was critical of bureaucratic indifference that had allowed abuse to continue for almost 30 years.

Politics and government
Former Australian Liberal Party leader John Hewson resigned from parliament almost two years after the Liberals had lost the 1993 federal election.

Former Tennessee Governor and U.S. Education Secretary Lamar Alexander announced that he would seek the Republican Party nomination for President of the United States in the 1996 election. He urged that many federal programs be eliminated and responsibility given to state governments.

10 years ago
2005


Died on this date
Chris Curtis, 63
. U.K. musician. Mr. Curtis, born Christopher Crummey, was the drummer, as well as singer and songwriter, with the Searchers from 1960-1966. In 1967 he helped to found the rock group Roundabout, which soon changed its name to Deep Purple. Mr. Curtis left the music business soon after to become a civil servant, performing music locally in Liverpool.

Terrorism
127 people were killed in a suicide bombing at a police recruiting centre in Al Hillah, Iraq.

Politics and government
Lebanon's pro-Syrian Prime Minister, Omar Karami, resigned amid large anti-Syria street demonstrations in Beirut.

Crime
BTK serial killer Dennis Rader was charged in Wichita, Kansas with 10 counts of first-degree murder. He later pled guilty and received multiple life sentences.

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