Sunday, 26 March 2017

March 27, 2017

150 years ago

Politics and government
The British House of Lords passed the British North America Act. The BNA Act provided for a Senate of 72 life members: 24 each for Ontario and Québec, and 12 each for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. The date of Confederation to be announced shortly; the BNA Act received royal assent on March 29.

125 years ago

Born on this date
Thorne Smith
. U.S. author. Mr. Smith wrote humourous supernatural fantasy fiction, and was best known for the novels Topper (1926) and Topper Takes a Trip (1932), both of which were made into popular movies. Mr. Smith died on June 21, 1934 of a heart attack at the age of 42.

Ferde Grofé. U.S. musician and composer. Mr. Grofé, a native of New York City, trained as a pianist and violinist and joined Paul Whiteman’s orchestra in 1917 as a pianist. From 1920-1932 he was employed by Mr. Whiteman as pianist, assistant conductor, orchestrator, and librarian. Mr. Grofé moved to the National Broadcasting Company as staff conductor in 1932, and joined the faculty of the Juilliard School in 1939. His best-known composition, Grand Canyon Suite, was first performed by Mr. Whiteman and his orchestra on November 22, 1931 at the Studebaker Theater in Chicago. Mr. Grofé's other compositions included Mississippi Suite (1926); Tabloid Suite (1932); Hollywood Suite (1935); Death Valley Suite (1949); Hudson River Suite (1955); and Niagara Falls Suite (1961). He died after a series of heart attacks on April 3, 1972, a week after his 80th birthday.

100 years ago

Born on this date
Cyrus Vance
. U.S. politician. Mr. Vance was U.S. Secretary of the Army in the administrations of Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson from 1962-1964, and Deputy Secretary of Defense in the administration of President Johnson from 1964-1967. He was Secretary of State in the administration of President Jimmy Carter from 1977-1980, and was known to prefer negotiation over conflict. Mr. Vance resigned in April 1980 in protest against Operation Eagle Claw, a failed attempt to rescue hostages from the U.S. embassy in Iran. He died on January 12, 2002 at the age of 84.

90 years ago

Died on this date
Joe Start, 84
. U.S. baseball player. Mr. Start, nicknamed "Old Reliable," was a first baseman with the Enterprise of Brooklyn (1860-1861) and Brooklyn Atlantics (1862-1870) in the National Association of Base Ball Players; the New York Mutuals (1871-1875) in the National Association; and the Mutuals (1876); Hartford Dark Blues (1877); Chicago White Stockings (1878); Providence Grays (1879-1885) and Washington Nationals (1886) in the National League, batting .295 with 8 home runs and 187 runs batted in in 272 games in the NA, and .300 with 7 homers and 357 RBIs in 798 games in the NL. He has been credited with originating the modern positioning of the first baseman.

75 years ago

Philippine President Manuel Quezon and members of his war cabinet joined U.S. Army General Douglas MacArthur in Australia after fleeing the Philippines as a result of invasion and occupation by Japanese forces.

The United States and Mexico signed a Lend-Lease agreement by which Mexico would receive planes, anti-aircraft guns, trucks, and locomotives.

U.K. Lord Privy Seal Sir Stafford Cripps continued his mission in New Delhi, where he conferred with Mohandas Gandhi and two other Indian representatives of four million Hindu Sikhs. Sir Stafford had been sent to India by Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Secretary of State for India Leo Amery to secure India's full cooperation in the war effort.

Politics and government
After three weeks of debate, the United States Senate voted to permit William Langer (Republican--North Dakota) to retain his seat, rejecting Privileges and Elections Committee charges that he was guilty of moral turpitude.

Economics and finance
The Canadian Parliament passed the War Appropriation (United Kingdom) Finance Act; $700 million of British debt was written off, at a cost to each Canadian of $87.

U.S. Assistant Attorney General Arnold told the Senate Defense Investigating Committee that Standard Oil Company had sought to deal in occupied France in 1941 and to establish Japanese connections in 1939 in case of U.S.-Japanese trade breakdowns.

Joe Louis (53-1) retained his world heavyweight title with a knockout of Abe Simon (36-10-1) at 16 seconds of the 6th round at Madison Square Garden in New York. It was Mr. Louis’s 21st successful defense of his championship, his second against Mr. Simon, and his last before entering the United States Army. For Mr. Simon, it was his last professional fight.

70 years ago

Reports from Nanking said that the Chinese Communists had established their headquarters in the Shansi city of Kolan, following the Nationalist capture of Yenan.

The U.S. State Department announced a worldwide search for Martin Bormann--deputy to German Fuehrer Adolf Hitler--amid rumours that he had escaped Berlin at the end of World War II.

The U.S. Navy reported that only the United Kingdom, Mexico, and Panama had returned any of the 4,795 naval vessels sent to U.S. allies under the Lend-Lease program in World War II.

Politics and government
Georgia Governor Melvin Thompson vetoed the "white primary" law, which he had earlier promised to support. The law had been sponsored by then-Governor Eugene Talmadge, who died in office on December 21, 1946. Mr. Thompson had taken office on March 18, after the Georgia Supreme Court had ruled in his favour in a dispute over who was the proper successor to Mr. Talmadge.

Economics and finance
Italy established its first post-World War II tie with Germany by signing a $4-million trade agreement with the French occupation zone.

Sweden accused the U.S.S.R. of violating the two countries' mutual trade agreement by demanding payment in dollars for Soviet good.

Despite protests from the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations, New York Governor Thomas Dewey signed a state law barring strikes by public employees.

Stanley Cup
Boston 1 @ Montreal 2 (OT)

Ken Mosdell scored at 5:38 of the 1st overtime period as the Canadiens edged the Bruins at the Montreal Forum.

60 years ago

The Academy Awards for 1956 were presented at the RKO Pantages Theatre in Hollywood. The winners included: Picture--Around the World in 80 Days; Director--George Stevens (Giant); Actor--Yul Brynner (The King and I); Actress--Ingrid Bergman (Anastasia); Supporting Actor--Anthony Quinn (Lust for Life); Supporting Actress--Dorothy Malone (Written on the Wind); Foreign Language Film--La Strada.

French Foreign Minister Christian Pineau told the National Assembly that France would back Israel's right to answer with force any Egyptian attack in the Gulf of Aqaba or from the Gaza Strip.

U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower charged that Soviet threats against construction of NATO bases in Norway were "completely indefensible."

Economics and finance
The U.S. Senate special foreign aid committee released a report in which Chamber of Commerce Chairman Clement Johnston charged that the governments of South Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and Thailand were using American aid "to build and equip armed forces" to keep themselves in power."

U.S. President Eisenhower urged Congress to end "the Post Office deficit," claiming he had made "zero progress" in the area during the past four years.

Teamsters union President Dave Beck invoked the 5th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution more than 80 times in refusing to tell the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Improper Activities in the Field of Labor-Management Relations whether he took more than $300,000 from the Teamsters' treasury in Seattle for his personal use.

50 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Spain (PROMUSICAE): Good Vibrations--The Beach Boys

Died on this date
Jaroslav Heyrovský, 76
. Czech chemist. Dr. Heyrovský was awarded the 1959 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for his discovery and development of the polarographic methods of analysis."

Fats Domino topped the bill as he began his first concert tour of England with a week-long engagement at the Saville Theatre in London. Gerry and the Pacemakers, the Bee Gees, and Rick Dane were the other acts.

U.S. Vice President Hubert Humphrey arrived in Geneva to begin a mission to seven Western European countries.

Politics and government
Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Juxon-Smith became chairman of the the National Reformation Council (NRC) in Sierre Leone, four days after a bloodless military coup.

40 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand: Don't Give Up on Us--David Soul (2nd week at #1)

Died on this date
Diana Hyland, 41
. U.S. actress. Miss Hyland, born Diana Gentner, appeared in several plays and films, but was best known for guest appearances in numerous television programs and regular roles in the soap operas Young Doctor Malone (1958-1963) and Peyton Place (1968-1969). She had a supporting role in the made-for-television movie The Boy in the Plastic Bubble (1976), for which she won a posthumous Emmy Award. The film starred John Travolta, and the two became romantically involved, and remained so until her death from cancer.

The worst aviation accident in history took place on the ground when a KLM Boeing 747 and a Pan Am Boeing 747 collided on a runway in fog at Los Rodeos Airport in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Canary Islands, killing 583 people (all 248 on KLM and 335 on Pan Am). 61 people on the Pan Am flight survived.

In the United States Boxing Championships, John Dino Denis (29-1-1) won an 8-round decision over Leroy Jones (18-1-1) in a heavyweight bout; Vonzell Johnson (14-0) scored a technical knockout of Tony Greene (17-6-4) at 2:18 of the 3rd round of a light heavyweight bout; Bobby "Boogaloo" Watts (32-3-1) scored a technical knockout of David Love (28-13) at 1:41 of the 4th round of a middleweight bout; Floyd Mayweather (11-1) won an 8-round unanimous decision over Miguel Barreto (30-9-5) in a welterweight bout; Greg Coverson (10-0) won an 8-round decision over Jerry Kornele (15-5) in a lightweight bout; and James Martinez (33-4-1) won an 8-round split decision over Warren Matthews (17-4-2) in a featherweight bout. The card took place at Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio, and was televised on ABC. This turned out to be the last card for the U.S. Boxing Championships, as the tournament, promoted by Don King and co-sponsored by The Ring, became enmeshed in scandal, with accusations of fixed fights and false records and inflated rankings for fighters. The tournament was cancelled on April 10.

Phoenix 4 @ Calgary 5

This blogger was in attendance at the Stampede Corral to see Lynn Powis score the winning goal in the last minute as the Cowboys edged the Roadrunners in an entertaining game.

30 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): Stay--Pierre Cosso & Bonnie Bianco (3rd week at #1)

Died on this date
William Bowers, 71
. U.S. writer. Mr. Bowers was a reporter for Life magazine before embarking on a career as a screenwriter, often writing humourous Westerns. He was nominated for Academy Awards for his screenplays for The Gunfighter (1950) and The Sheepman (1958).

Two days of massacres of Dinka civilians by government forces in southern Sudan concluded with approximately 1,500 fatalities.

Chad announced that its army had taken the town of Faya-Largeau, the last major Libyan stronghold in Chad, without a fight. The Libyans had been reported withdrawing from Faya-Largeau two days earlier.

Economics and finance
U.S. President Ronald Reagan, citing Japan’s failure to abide by a 1986 agreement forbidding Japanese companies from selling semiconductor chips in the United States for less than “fair market value” (as determined by the U.S.), announced that the United States would impose duties that would double the import prices of many electronic products imported from Japan.

The United States Labor Department reported that consumer prices had risen 0.4% in February.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Germany (Media Control): Das Boot--U96 (10th week at #1)

Died on this date
James E. Webb, 85
. U.S. bureaucrat. Mr. Webb held several positions in a long career in government, but was best known as Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration from 1961-1968. During his time as NASA Administrator the United States commenced putting men in space with Project Mercury (1961-1963) and Project Gemini (1965-1966), and prepared for Project Apollo. Mr. Webb left office four days before the liftoff of Apollo 7, the first manned mission of Project Apollo.

Fishermen in Newfoundland left idle by shutdowns and cutbacks in the Newfoundland fishery began a four-day protest, targeting foreign vessels that continued to fish on the Grand Banks, outside Canada’s 200-mile limit.

The government of New York State decided not to sign a $17-billion contract with Quebec Hydro for the $12.6- billion Great Whale Project.

20 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Denmark (Nielsen Music Control & IFPI): Ring-A-Ling--Tiggy (7th week at #1)

#1 single in Finland (Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland): C'mon baby yeah--Tehosekoitin (3rd week at #1)

Died on this date
Lane Dwinell, 90
. U.S. politician. Mr. Dwinell, a Republican, was Governor of New Hampshire from 1955-1959.

10 years ago

Died on this date
Paul Lauterbur, 77
. U.S. chemist. Dr. Lauterbur and Peter Mansfield shared the 2003 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine "for their discoveries concerning magnetic resonance imaging."

Club owners voted to make the use of instant replay a permanent officiating tool.

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