Saturday, 13 February 2016

February 13, 2016

250 years ago

Born on this date
Thomas Robert Malthus
. U.K. clergyman and economist. Rev. Malthus, an Anglican cleric, was best known for An Essay on the Principles of Population, which went through six editions from 1798-1826. Rev. Malthus argued that human population increased faster than food supply; the last edition of his work influenced evolutionists Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace. Rev. Malthus died on December 29, 1834 at the age of 68.

175 years ago

Politics and government
The first Parliament of the Province of Canada held its first meeting in a converted hospital in Kingston. The members of the Legislative Council and the House of Assembly were sworn in, after which the House of Assembly elected Austin Cuvillier as speaker. William Draper and Charles Odgen formed the Draper-Ogden Ministry.

150 years ago

The gang that included Jesse James and Cole Younger committed their first bank robbery in Liberty, Missouri.

125 years ago

Born on this date
Grant Wood
. U.S. artist. Mr. Wood, a native of rural Iowa, was known for his paintings of the rural Midwestern United States. His best known work was American Gothic (1930), one of the most famous paintings in American history. Mr. Wood died of pancreatic cancer on February 12, 1942, the day before his 51st birthday.

Kate Roberts. U.K. author. Miss Roberts, a Welsh nationalist, wrote novels and short stories in Welsh. She died on April 4, 1985 at the age of 94.

75 years ago

Spanish dictator Generalissimo Francisco Franco and Vichy French Prime Minister Marshal Philippe Petain conferred in Montpelier, France.

King Alfonso XIII of Spain renounced all claims to the throne in favour of his son Don Juan.

The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 15-8 in favour of the Lend-Lease bill.

Economics and finance
The New York Stock Exchange declined to extend trading hours after a survey showed more than half the members opposed to the change.

Robert J. Boltz, an investment counsellor from Philadelphia, was arrested in Rochester, New York on charges of embezzling more than $2.5 million.

U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt nominated Jerome Frank for the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

70 years ago

At the trial in Nuremberg of accused Nazi war criminals, the Soviet prosecution accused the Germans of murdering and mistreating uncounted numbers of U.S.S.R. prisoners. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Spruille Braden said that evidence captured in Germany indicated that Argentina had been guilty of supporting the Nazi cause during World War II.

The United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution rejecting Soviet demands for forced repatriation of refugees; the U.S.S.R. also lost her bids to gain Albania's admission to the UN and to have the Security Council examine the situation in the Netherlands East Indies. The United Nations Permanent Headquarters Committee voted to locate the organization in New York City, and named a nine-man commission to choose a final site.

According to an official census taken by the Vienna Jewish Community Organization, 3,028 Jews remaining in the city intended to leave Europe, and 1,065 wished to go to Palestine. More than half were willing to go anywhere.

U.S. military authorities in Germany announced that Yugoslavian nationals employed by the Army would be dismissed immediately, after raids on refugee camps uncovered documents of an underground "Royal Yugoslav Army."

Politics and government
U.S. Secretary of the Interior Harold Ickes resigned because of his dispute with President Harry Truman over Mr. Truman's appointment of Edwin Pauley as Undersecretary of the Navy.

The Communist Party USA expelled former leader Earl Browder for factional activity and violation of party discipline, and warned members against "Browderism."

A U.S. federal court in Washington, D.C. ruled that poet Ezra Pound was mentally unsound and could not stand trial on treason charges. Mr. Pound had made broadcasts in Italy during World War II on behalf of the Axis powers.

The 10-day strike of tugboat operators in New York City ended as International Longshoremen's Association workers agreed to arbitration of their dispute, permitting normal fuel supplies to reach New York City.

The U.K. House of Commons voted to repeal the Trade Disputes Act (1927), which banned general strikes.

275 people were killed when an earthquake struck Algeria.

15 people were injured and 200 left homeless when a tornado struck Ardmore, Oklahoma.

40 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand: Convoy--C.W. McCall (2nd week at #1)

#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): Moviestar--Harpo (2nd week at #1)

#1 single in Switzerland: Mamma Mia--ABBA (2nd week at #1)

Died on this date
Lily Pons, 77
. French-born U.S. singer. Miss Pons, born Alice Joséphine Pons, was a pianist before she took up singing, performing as a soprano in an operatic career that lasted for more than 40 years. She moved to the United States in the early 1930s, and became an American citizen in 1940. Miss Pons performed with the Metropolitan Opera in New York City over 300 times.

Murtala Muhammed, 37. 4th Head of State of Nigeria, 1975-1976. General Muhammed became haed of state on July 30, 1975 after a military coup overthrew Yakubu Gowon. Gen. Muhammad and aide-de camp Lieutenant Akintunde Akinsehinwa were killed in an abortive attempt at a coup led by Lieutenant Colonel Buka Suka Dimka, when their car was ambushed en route to Gen. Muhammed's office in Lagos. The coup leaders held the radio station in Lagos for several hours, but the government had regained control by nightfall. Gen. Muhammed was succeeded as head of state by Chief of Staff Olusegun Obasanjo.

This blogger attended a morning pep rally at Sir John Franklin Territorial High School in Yellowknife, and then the Valentine's Day dance at the school gym that night--an event that was ruined by the sight of a certain girl necking in the corner with a certain boy who wasn't this blogger; and a more offensive spectacle I cannot recall.

Kathy Kreiner of Canada won the gold medal in the women's Giant Slalom at the Winter Olympics in Innsbruck, Austria; it was Canada's only gold medal at the games. Dorothy Hamill of the United States won the women's figure skating gold medal, wowing judges with her signature spin--dubbed the Hamill Camel--and creating a new North American hairstyle almost overnight.

30 years ago

On television tonight
The Twilight Zone, on CITV
Tonight’s episode: Gramma, starring Barret Oliver; Personal Demons, starring Martin Balsam; Cold Reading, starring Larry Poindexter

This blogger won $89 on St. Albert radio station CKST, but I don't remember what for.

Iran claimed that 17 of its soldiers had died as a result of poisoning used by chemical weapons used by Iraq.

Chrysler Corporation chairman Lee Iacocca, dismissed the previous day as chairman of the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Centennial Commission, alleged that he had been removed from his position because the U.S. administration of President Ronald Reagan wanted him out because he opposed plans for a hotel and conference centre on Ellis Island that Mr. Iacocca said would be developed by "the sale of tax shelters to the rich."

A photograph released by NASA of the rocket carrying the space shuttle Challenger on January 28 showed that the plume of fire previously observed had been pinpointed at or near the bottom seam that was supposed to have been sealed by the O-rings. A failure of the O-rings was being investigated as the prime cause of the explosion that killed all seven astronauts just 73 seconds after liftoff.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Sweden (Topplistan): Crazy--Seal

On television tonight
The Wonder Years, on ABC
Tonight’s episode: Courage

Up to 500 Iraqi civilians were killed, including many sleeping women and children, when U.S. planes dropped two bombs on an underground shelter. Coalition forces said the target was a military control centre and blamed Iraq for placing civilians there. The building was in a residential area and across the street from a school.

Economics and finance
Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev said the nation was not yet ready to give up central economic controls.

20 years ago

Died on this date
Martin Balsam, 76
. U.S. actor. Mr. Balsam had a lengthy career as a supporting actor in television programs and movies such as 12 Angry Men (1957); Psycho (1960); and Little Big Man (1970). He won an Academy Award for his supporting performance in A Thousand Clowns (1965).

Politics and government
This blogger attended the "Speech to the Throne," the response by Grant Mitchell, leader of the official opposition Liberal Party, to the Speech from the Throne of the Alberta provincial government of Premier Ralph Klein. Mr. Mitchell spoke at Mackay Avenue School.

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