Monday, 12 December 2016

December 12, 2016

Born on this date
Happy Birthday, Robb Findlay!

150 years ago

Born on this date
Alfred Werner
. Swiss chemist. Dr. Werner was awarded the 1913 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "[for] his work on the linkage of atoms in molecules [...] especially in inorganic chemistry." He was the first inorganic chemist to win the Nobel prize, and the only one prior to 1973. Dr. Werner died on November 15, 1919 at the age of 52.

The worst mining disaster in English history killed 383 miners and rescuers at Oaks Colliery near Stairfoot, Barnsley, West Riding of Yorkshire.

80 years ago

Nationalist Chinese leader Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek was arrested in the city of Xi'an by bodyguards working for former Manchurian warlord Zhang Xueliang. The incident led to a truce between Nationalists and Communists in order to present a united front against Japan.

75 years ago

Died on this date
César Basa, 26
. Filipino military aviator. Lieutenant Basa was shot down in a battle against numerically superior Japanese forces, and was the first Filipino fighter pilot to be killed in World War II; he was awarded a posthumous Silver Star.

Hungary and Romania declared war on the United States. The United Kingdom declared war on Bulgaria. India declared war on Japan. Panama, Honduras, Haiti, and El Salvador declared war on Germany and Italy. 54 Japanese A6M Zero fighters raided Batangas Field, Philippines; Jesús Villamor and four Filipino fighter pilots fended them off, while César Basa was killed. The U.S. War Department claimed that Japanese landings at several points on the Philippine island of Luzon had been repulsed. Japanese troops advanced in northwest Malaya, while Japanese bombers raided Penang. The U.S.S.R. claimed that the German armies besieging Moscow had been routed. The British command reported that its troops had pushed 40 miles west of Tobruk, Libya and had surrounded El Gazala. The United States Coast Guard seized 14 French ships in American ports, including the luxury liner SS Normandie at New York; it was subsequently renamed USS Lafayette. A U.S. federal jury in New York convicted 14 men on charges of espionage and failure to register as agents of Germany; 19 others had already pled guilty. U.S. aviator Charles Lindbergh was scheduled to address an America First Committee in Boston, but, because of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor five days earlier, the America First Committee dissolved, and his speech, titled What Do We Mean by Democracy and Freedom?, was never delivered. The U.S. Senate passed and sent to conference a $10,572,350,705 defense appropriaton bill, increasing the House of Representatives measure by $2,328,511,774.

Ford Motor Company began a 24-hour day, 7-day week for all defense projects.

German Fuehrer Adolf Hitler declared the imminent extermination of the Jews at a meeting in the Reich Chancellery in Berlin.

Three Protestant women's organizations merged under a single constitution as the National Council of Churchwomen at a meeting in Atlantic City.

70 years ago

Died on this date
Charles B. Thwing, 86
. U.S. physicist. Dr. Thwing devised Thwing's law of inductivity.

Greek Prime Minister Constantin Tsaldaris accused Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, and Albania of creating a state of "undeclared war" in border clashes against Greece.

The United Nations General Assembly passed a compromise resolution on Spain, urging member nations to recall their ministers from Spain, barring the country from participation in UN agencies, and calling on the UN Security Council to take up the issue again if Spain did not establish a democratic government "within a reasonable time."

The Council of Foreign Ministers ended its New York meetings after agreeing to set up special committees to study the Austrian and German peace treaties.

The Canadian Army, Royal Canadian Navy, and Royal Canadian Air Force were reintegrated into one central command.

Politics and government
Socialist Léon Blum was elected by the French National Assembly to serve as President of the Provisional Government, effective December 16. He had served as Prime Minister from 1936-1937 and March 13-April 10, 1938.

Canadian Prime Minister Mackenzie King announced a cabinet shuffle, resulting in Paul Martin assuming the office of Minister of National Health and Welfare, replacing Brooke Claxton, who was named Minister of National Defence. Mr. Claxton replaced Douglas Abbott, who was named Minister of Finance and Receiver General. Mr. Abbott replaced J.L. Ilsley, who was named Minister of Justice, replacing Louis St. Laurent, who had recently been named Secretary of State for External Affairs.

South Korea's first occupation legislature opened in Seoul, boycotted by the rightist Han Kook Party because of the invalidation of elections in two provinces.

U.S. President Harry Truman created an office of Temporary Controls, headed by General Philip Fleming, to take over and liquidate the Office of Price Administration, Civilian Production Administration, Office of Economic Stabilization, and Office of War Mobilization and Reconversion.

Dr. Luis W. Alvarez was awarded the Robert J. Collier Aviation Trophy for his work on radar.

Allied authorities in Tokyo issued requirements for the licensing of news media in Japan to control "propaganda" from Soviet and other sources.

U.S. President Truman named nine scientists as advisers to the Atomic Energy Commission, including Manhattan Project workers Enrico Fermi, Glenn Seaborg, and J. Robert Oppenheimer.

The U.S. Senate War Investigating Committee heard Army engineers testify that Sen. Theodore Bilbo (Democrat--Mississippi) was active in securing over $25 million in contracts to build war installations in his state.

The government of Guatemala temporarily banned strikes and slowdowns in the face of threatened protests against United Fruit Company and International Railways of Central America.

A fire at an ice plant in Hudson Heights, Manhattan, New York City, spread to an adjacent tenement, killing 37 people.

60 years ago

The Irish Republican Army began its "Border Campaign" against British targets in Northern Ireland in an attempt to end British rule.

World events
Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion disclosed that Israeli border police had shot and killed 48 Israeli Arabs in Kafr Kassim, near the Jordanian border, as they returned from work, unaware that a military curfew had been imposed.

Budapest radio announced that all political suspects found guilty by newly-organized military courts would be automatically executed.

A Belgrade court handed a three-year prison sentence to former Yugoslavian Deputy President Milovan Djilas for "slandering" the government.

The United Nations Security Council approved the admission of Japan to the UN, following the exchange of final ratifications of the U.S.S.R.-Japan peace treaty in Tokyo. The UN General Assembly condemned the U.S.S.R.'s "violation of the Charter in depriving Hungary of its liberty and independence and the Hungarian people of their fundamental rights.

Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru told American journalists that Chinese Premier Chou En-lai's attitude during his recent visit to New Delhi "seemed to be one of desiring to have much better relations" with the United States.

Politics and government
Haitian President Paul Magloire resigned in the face of a general strike that followed his decision to remain in office.

Economics and finance
The U.S. Administration of President Dwight Eisenhower announced the formation of a Presidential Commission for Hungarian Refugee Relief, headed by Tracy Voorhees.

The U.S. Atomic Energy Commission announced that a large amount of nuclear information would be released to the public, starting in 1957, as a result of a revision of the 1956 Tripartite Declassification Guide, which controlled the publication of nuclear data in the U.S.A., U.K., and Canada.

50 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Spain (PROMUSICAE): Black is Black--Los Bravos (6th week at #1)

#1 single in Ireland (IRMA): Green, Green Grass of Home--Tom Jones (2nd week at #1)

Canada's top 10 (RPM)
1 Lady Godiva--Peter and Gordon
2 Winchester Cathedral--The New Vaudeville Band
3 You Keep Me Hangin' On--The Supremes
4 Stop Stop Stop--The Hollies
5 Good Vibrations--The Beach Boys
6 I'm Ready for Love--Martha and the Vandellas
7 Mellow Yellow--Donovan
8 Devil with a Blue Dress On & Good Golly Miss Molly--Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels
9 Holy Cow--Lee Dorsey
10 Born Free--Roger Williams

Singles entering the chart were Words of Love by the Mamas and the Papas (#62); I'm a Believer by the Monkees (#77); Happenings Ten Years Time Ago by the Yardbirds (#79); Going Nowhere by Los Bravos (#81); 98.6 by Keith (#84); Just in Case by the Ugly Ducklings (#93); Good Thing by Paul Revere and the Raiders (#94); Georgy Girl by the Seekers (#95); East West by Herman's Hermits (#96); I've Passed This Way Before by Jimmy Ruffin (#97); Think of Her by the Jaybees (#98); Raining in My Sunshine by Jay & the Americans (#99); and Try a Little Tenderness by Otis Redding (#100).

On the radio
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, starring Carleton Hobbs and Norman Shelley, on BBC Light Programme
Tonight's episode: The Boscombe Valley Mystery

At the movies
A Man for All Seasons, produced and directed by Fred Zinnemann, and starring Paul Scofield, received its premiere screening in New York City.

Breakfast at Tiffany's, a musical starring Mary Tyler Moore, Richard Chamberlain, and Sally Kellerman, received its first preview performance at the Majestic Theatre on Broadway in New York City. The play, based on Truman Capote's novella, had been titled Holly Golightly in out-of-town tryouts.

40 years ago

Died on this date
Jack Cassidy, 49
. U.S. actor. Mr. Cassidy was best known for starring in Broadway musicals, but he made guest appearances in numerous television programs. He won a Tony Award for his starring role in She Loves Me (1963), and was nominated for an Emmy Award for his supporting role in the television comedy series He & She (1967-1968). Mr. Cassidy was the father of actors and singers David and Shaun Cassidy, and was married to singer and actress Shirley Jones from 1956-1974. Jack Cassidy was a heavy drinker who suffered from mental problems in his later years; after an unsuccessful date, he was alone in his apartment, and fell asleep after lighting a cigarette while he was drunk. The cigarette fell onto his couch, which caught fire; Mr. Cassidy was able to make it to the front door, but died before he could get out.

International Series (exhibition)
C.S.S.R. (0-1) 5 @ Winnipeg 6

Cincinnati (10-4) 42 @ New York Jets (3-11) 3
St. Louis (10-4) 17 @ New York Giants (3-11) 14
Seattle (2-12) 10 @ Philadelphia (4-10) 27
Buffalo (2-12) 20 @ Baltimore (11-3) 58
Washington (10-4) 27 @ Dallas (11-3) 14

The Colts' rout of the Bills at Memorial Stadium marked the last game for running back O.J. Simpson in a Buffalo uniform after eight seasons with the Bills; he spent his final two seasons with the San Francisco 49ers.

Former Montréal Mayor Jean Drapeau was named Canadian delegate to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Paris.

30 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): In the Army Now--Status Quo (4th week at #1)

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Ireland (IRMA): Mysterious Ways--U2

The Russian Federation gained its independence from the U.S.S.R.

Canadian Justice Minister Kim Campbell introduced into the House of Commons a new rape shield law that defined consent, allowing case questioning only when crucial to the defendant. The new bill restored protections lost by a court ruling the previous August.

20 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Denmark (Nielsen Music Control & IFPI): Breathe--The Prodigy

#1 single in Finland (Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland): Breathe--The Prodigy (4th week at #1)

Died on this date
Vance Packard, 82
. U.S. journalist. Mr. Packard wrote for newspapers and magazines from the mid-1930s through the mid-1950s, but was best known for his books critiquing trends in modern society. His books included The Hidden Persuaders (1957); The Status Seekers (1959); The Waste Makers (1960); The Pyramid Climbers (1962); The Naked Society (1964); The Sexual Wilderness (1968); A Nation of Strangers (1972); and The People Shapers (1977).

The government of Canada decided to take over operation of Radio Canada International, reversing Canadian Broadcasting Corporation President Perrin Beatty's earlier decision to close it down.

Politics and government
Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien named Lise Thibault as Lieutenant Governor of Québec, with her appointment to take effect January 30, 1997. Mrs. Thibault was the first woman and first person with a disbility to hold the post.

Outfielder Moises Alou signed with the Florida Marlins as a free agent. Mr. Alou, the son of Montréal Expos' manager Felipe Alou, had been with the Expos since 1990, and batted .281 with 21 home runs and 96 runs batted in in 143 games in 1996.

10 years ago

Died on this date
Raymond P. Shafer, 89
. U.S. politician. Mr. Shafer, a Republican, served in the Pennsylvania State Senate from 1959-1962 before serving as Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania from 1963-1967 and Governor of Pennsylvania from 1967-1971.

Paul Arizin, 78. U.S. basketball player. Mr. Arizin was a forward who had an outstanding career at Villanova University (1947-50), and played with the Philadelphia Warriors from 1950-52 and 1954-62, helping the Warriors win the National Basketball Association championship in 1955-56. He was the NBA's leading scorer in 1951-52 and 1956-57, and left the NBA with 16,266 points, the third-highest total in history to that time. Mr. Arizin declined to accompany the Warriors when they moved to San Francisco in 1962, and concluded his career with three seasons with the Camden Bullets of the Eastern Professional Basketball League, helping them win the league championship in 1964. Mr. Arizin was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1978, and the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.

Peter Boyle, 71. U.S. actor. Mr. Boyle was best known for his roles in the movies Joe (1970) and Young Frankenstein (1974), and his supporting role in the television comedy series Everybody Loves Raymond (1996-2005). He won an Emmy Award for a guest appearance in The X-Files (1996), and was nominated seven times for Emmys for Everybody Loves Raymond. Mr. Boyle died of multiple myeloma and heart disease.

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