Tuesday, 20 February 2018

February 21, 2018

475 years ago

Led by Emperor Galawdewos of Ethiopia, a combined army of Ethiopian and Portuguese troops defeated the Somali-Ottoman army led by Imam Ahmad ibn Ibrihim al-Ghazi in the Battle of Wayna Daga east of Lake Tana in Ethiopia.

210 years ago

Without a previous declaration of war, Russian troops crossed the border to Sweden at Abborfors in eastern Finland, thus beginning the Finnish War, in which Sweden lost the eastern half of the country (i.e., Finland) to Russia.

190 years ago

The initial issue of the Cherokee Phoenix, published in New Echota, capital of the Cherokee Nation (in present-day Georgia), was the first periodical to use the Cherokee syllabary invented by Sequoyah.

170 years ago

The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels was published anonymously by the Workers' Educational Association (Communistischer Arbeiterbildungsverein) at Bishopsgate in the City of London in the German language under the title Manifest der Kommunistischen Partei.

140 years ago

The District Telephone Company of New Haven, Connecticut issued the first telephone directory.

125 years ago

Born on this date
Andres Segovia
. Spanish classical guitarist. Mr. Segovia was regarded as one of the greatest classical guitarists of the 20th century. He died on June 2, 1987 at the age of 94.

100 years ago

Died on this date
. U.S. Carolina Parakeet. Incas, the last Carolina Parakeet, died in captivity at the Cincinnati Zoo, in the same cage as Martha, the last passenger pigeon, who died in 1914. Incas was a male, and died a year after his mate, Lady Jane. Deforestation of the Eastern and Midwestern United States, as well as hunting by humans, contributed to the species' extinction, which wasn't officially declared until 1939.

Politics and government
Senator James Lougheed was appointed Minister of Soldiers Civil Re-establishment in the Canadian cabinet of Prime Minister Robert Borden; Sen. Lougheed was in charge of relocation, hospital care, and pensions for returning soldiers and war workers.

90 years ago


1,700 Communist troops, captured by Canton government troops near that city, were executed.

Several verdicts were handed down in trials relating to the Teapot Dome oil lease scandal of 1923. Justice Frederick L. Siddons of the District of Columbia Supreme Court sentenced oil executive Harry F. Sinclair to six months' imprisonment for contempt of court. Henry Mason Day, an official with Sinclair's Mammoth Oil Company, was sentenced to four months for contempt of court after admitting that he'd hired Burns detectives to shadow the jury in the Albert B. Fall-Harry Sinclair criminal conspiracy (i.e. Teapot Dome) trial. Sherman Burns, the active head of the Burns Detective Agency, along with his father, William J. Burns, were also convicted and sentenced for contempt of court. Sherman was fined $1,000, while his father was sentenced to 15 days' imprisonment. All the defendants gave bail and notice of appeal.

In Lisbon, Ohio, S.A. Lengel, former Chief of Police in Canton, Ohio, who had once been convicted of the murder of Canton editor Don R. Mellett, was freed by a directed verdict in his second trial.

In New York, five city magistrates, three city clerks and a Municipal Court judge received envelopes through the mail that contained enough silver nitrate to cause death. It was stated that similar envelopes had been sent to President Calvin Coolidge and others in Washington.

A U.S. naval court of inquiry into the sinking of the submarine USS S-4 off Provincetown, Massachusetts on December 17, 1927, which killed 5 officers, 34 enlisted men and a civilian, placed the blame on the dead commander of the submarine, Lieutenant Commander Roy K. Jones, and Lt. Comm. John S. Bayliss, commanding officer of the Coast Guard ship Paulding, which rammed the submarine. The court, presided over by Rear Admiral Richard H. Jackson, stated that the two commanders "are jointly responsible for the collision," and that "serious blame was incurred by them."

80 years ago

Died on this date
George Ellery Hale, 69
. U.S. astronomer. Professor Hale was known for his study of the sun and for his invention of the spectrohelioscope, a type of solar telescope that allows the sun to be viewed in a selected wavelength of light.

Politics and government
Lucien-Hubert Borne was elected Mayor of Quebec City, defeating incumbent Mayor Joseph-Ernest Grégoire by 5,571 votes.

75 years ago

A lunar eclipse was visible along the East Coast of the United States, beginning at 12:03 A.M.

Mexican President Manuel Avila Camacho said that Mexico would not send troops overseas. Soviet forces took four towns in the Donets Basin and made further gains near Orel and Krasnodar. German tank units in Tunisia, supported by infantry, took the Kasserine pass, 12 miles from the Algerian border. Japanese efforts to cross the Salween River north of Lungling on the Burma Road were repulsed by Chinese forces.

U.S. and U.K. officials in both New Delhi and Washington discussed Indian problems and the release of imprisoned Hindu nationalist leader Mohandas Gandhi.

70 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in the U.S.A. (Billboard) (Best Seller): I'm Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover--Art Mooney and his Orchestra

U.S. top 10 (Cash Box)
1 Ballerina--Vaughn Monroe and his Orchestra (9th week at #1)
--Bing Crosby with the Rhythmaires
--Buddy Clark
2 I'm Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover--Art Mooney and his Orchestra
--Russ Morgan and his Orchestra
--Uptown String Band
--The Three Suns
3 Golden Earrings--Peggy Lee
4 Serenade of the Bells--Sammy Kaye and his "Swing and Sway" Orchestra
--Jo Stafford
--Kay Kyser and his Orchestra
5 How Soon (Will I Be Seeing You)--Vaughn Monroe and his Orchestra
--Bing Crosby and Carmen Cavallaro
--Jack Owens
--Dinah Shore
6 Too Fat Polka (I Don’t Want Her) (You Can Have Her) (She’s Too Fat for Me)--Arthur Godfrey
7 I'll Dance at Your Wedding--Ray Noble and his Orchestra with Buddy Clark
--Peggy Lee
8 Now is the Hour (Maori Farewell Song)--Bing Crosby
--Gracie Fields
--Eddy Howard and his Orchestra
--Margaret Whiting
9 Beg Your Pardon--Francis Craig and his Orchestra
--Frankie Carle and his Orchestra
--Larry Green and his Orchestra
10 Manana (Is Soon Enough for Me)--Peggy Lee

Singles entering the chart were Shine by Frankie Laine (#26); Slap 'Er Down Agin, Paw by Arthur Godfey (#28); The Thousand Islands Song by Arthur Godfey with the Too Fat Trio (#38); and Teresa, with versions by Vic Damone; and Dick Haymes and the Andrews Sisters (#40).

Died on this date
James H. McGraw, 87
. U.S. publisher. Mr. McGraw founded McGraw Publishing Company, which merged with Hill Publishing Company in 1909 to form McGraw-Hill, one of America's leading publishers of educational materials.

China's Nationalist government reported losing the Manchurian steel centre of Anshan to the Communists.

Politics and government
Charging a rightist plot to bring Czechoslovakia into the Western sphere of influence, Czech Prime Minister Klement Gottwald demanded that President Eduard Benes agree to a reorganization of the government.

The Japanese House of Representatives elected Democratic Party leader Hitoshi Ashida as Prime Minister.

Supporters of the 1948 U.S. presidential candidacy of former Vice President Henry Wallace founded the Progressive Party in Lansing, Michigan.

Economics and finance
The United Kingdom dropped Palestine and Transjordan from the sterling bloc as a preliminary step to ending the British mandate.

The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) was incorporated in Daytona Beach, Florida by Bill France, Sr.

60 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in the U.K. (New Musical Express): The Story of My Life--Michael Holliday (2nd week at #1)

On television tonight
Harbor Command, starring Wendell Corey
Tonight's episode: The Witness

At the movies
Sing Boy Sing, starring Tommy Sands and Edmond O'Brien, opened in theatres.

Politics and government
Egyptians and Syrians voted nearly unanimously to approve the establishment of the United Arab Republic, with Egypt's Gamal Nasser as President.

Economics and finance
Representatives of Poland and Yugoslavia signed an agreement in Washington providing for the establishment of a permanent Yugoslavian-Polish committee to encourage integrated production and joint marketing of certain industrial goods.

Popular culture
The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament symbol, aka peace symbol, commissioned by the Direct Action Committee in protest against the Atomic Weapons Research Establishment, was designed and completed by Gerald Holtom.

Ingemar Johansson (19-0) retained his European heavyweight title with a technical knockout of British Empire champion Joe Erskine (32-2-1) at the end of the 13th round at Masshallen in Gothenburg, Sweden.

50 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in the U.K. (Record Retailer): The Mighty Quinn (Quinn the Eskimo)--Manfred Mann (2nd week at #1)

Australia's top 10 (Go-Set)
1 Sadie (The Cleaning Lady)--Johnny Farnham (4th week at #1)
2 Judy in Disguise (With Glasses)--John Fred and his Playboy Band
3 Tin Soldier/I Feel Much Better--Small Faces
4 Daydream Believer--The Monkees
5 Hello Goodbye/I Am the Walrus--The Beatles
6 Bottle of Wine--The Fireballs
7 She (EP)--The Monkees
8 Monterey--Eric Burdon & the Animals
9 Different Drum--Stone Poneys
10 You Only Live Twice/Oh Lonesome Me--Nancy Sinatra/Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood

Singles entering the chart were Foxey Lady/Fire by the Jimi Hendrix Experience (#31); Love is Blue (L'Amour est Bleu) by Paul Mauriat and his Orchestra (#33); Melborn and Sideny by Idlers Five (#35); Skip a Rope by Henson Cargill (#36); Sons and Lovers by Paul Jones (#39); and I Can Take or Leave Your Loving by Herman's Hermits (#40).

Died on this date
Howard Florey, 69
. Australian pathologist and pharmacologist. Dr. Florey shared the 1945 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Alexander Fleming and Ernest Chain "for the discovery of penicillin and its curative effect in various infectious diseases." Dr. Florey was the first to carry out clinical tests of penicillin.

40 years ago

On television tonight
Family, on ABC
Tonight's episode: The Covenant

Kansas City 0 @ Tulsa 2

30 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand (RIANZ): Pump Up the Volume--M/A/R/R/S (2nd week at #1)

#1 single in Switzerland: Heaven is a Place on Earth--Belinda Carlisle (4th week at #1)

Speaking to an audience of 6,000 at his Family Worship Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Rev. Jimmy Swaggart resigned from his ministry, admitted an unspecified sin and asked for forgiveness.

Mr. Swaggart had loudly (and correctly) denounced the sin of televangelist Jim Bakker when his ministry had been brought down in a sex scandal the previous year. Mr. Swaggart had also accused fellow Assemblies of God pastor Marvin Gorman of adultery. Mr. Gorman responded by hiring a private detective, who obtained photographs of Mr. Swaggart at a motel frequently used by prostitutes. Mr. Gorman handed the evidence over to Assemblies of God leaders.

West Germany defeated the United States 4-1 in men's hockey at the Olympic Saddledome in Calgary.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand: I Will Always Love You--Whitney Houston (10th week at #1)

#1 single in Austria (Ö3): I Will Always Love You--Whitney Houston (4th week at #1)

#1 single in Switzerland: I Will Always Love You--Whitney Houston (6th week at #1)

#1 single in Ireland (IRMA): This Time/Life Without You--Christy Moore (5th week at #1)

CBS bought the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City in order for David Letterman to continue hosting his late-night talk show from there. Mr. Letterman was scheduled to leave NBC several months hence to join CBS.

20 years ago

Pope John Paul II elevated Toronto Archbishop Aloysius Ambrozic to the rank of cardinal in a Vatican ceremony attended by 20,000 people.

Éric Bédard, Derrick Campbell, François Drolet, and Marc Gagnon of Canada won the gold medal in the men's short-track 5,000-metre relay speed skating event at Nagano, Japan.

10 years ago

Died on this date
Ben Chapman, 79
. U.S. actor. Mr. Chapman was best known for playing the Gill-man on land (another actor played him in aquatic scenes) in the movie Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954).

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