Saturday, 24 March 2018

March 24, 2018

140 years ago

The U.K. Royal Navy corvette HMS Eurydice sank in a snowstorm off the Isle of Wight, killing 317 of the 319 crew members and trainees aboard.

125 years ago

Born on this date
George Sisler
. U.S. baseball player. Mr. Sisler was a first baseman with the St. Louis Browns (1915-1927), Washington Nationals (1928), and Boston Braves (1928-1930), batting .340 with 102 home runs and 1,175 runs batted in in 2,055 games. In 1920 he led the American League in games played (154); at bats (631); hits (257); batting average (.407); and total bases (399); and was second in doubles (49); triples (18); home runs (19); runs batted in (122); and stolen bases (42). In 1922 he led tha AL in runs (134); hits (246); batting average (.420); triples (18); and tied for the league lead in stolen bases (51), winning the league's Most Valuable Player Award. A severe attack of sinusitis resulting in double vision prevented him from playing in 1923, and he never hit as well again. His 257 hits in 1920 was a major league record that stood until broken by Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners in 2004. Mr. Sisler also pitched at times, compiling a record of 5 wins and 6 losses in 24 games. He managed the Browns from 1924-1926, compiling a record of 218-241. Mr. Sisler was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1939. He died on March 26, 1973, two days after his 80th birthday.

110 years ago

Politics and government
Douglas Hazen was sworn in as Premier of New Brunswick, leading a Conservative government that replaced the Liberal government of Premier Clifford Robinson. The Conservatives had won 31 of 45 seats in the Legislative Assembly in the March 3 provincial election, taking power for the first time in 25 years.

90 years ago


U.S. Army Colonel Charles Lindbergh ended his 5-day series of air trips for members of Congress in Washington with a total of 29 trips and 334 passengers.

80 years ago

Stanley Cup
Boston 0 @ Toronto 1 (2OT)

George Parsons scored at 1:31 of the 2nd overtime period to give the Maple Leafs the win over the Bruins at Maple Leaf Gardens.

75 years ago

Soviet troops captured Abinsk, 20 miles northeast of the German-held Black Sea port of Novorossiisk. Three downed U.S. fliers were rescued by Australians after surviving for 10 months in the jungles of New Britain.

U.S. Vice President Henry Wallace addressed the Panamanian National Assembly, urging the resumption of Latin American relations with the U.S.S.R.

Northern Appalachian coal miners and the United Mine Workers of America signed an agreement extending wage negotiations one month beyond the April 1 deadline of the present contract.

70 years ago

Nationalist Chinese forces reported the loss of Fusin and Tzuchuan in southern Manchuria.

The Belgian Senate ratified the 50-year treaty establishing the Union of Western Europe.

U.S. physicist Glenn Martin revealed the development of a radioactive cloud with an effective lethal area greater than that of the atomic bomb.

Gerhart Eisler, a German Communist accused of being a Soviet spy, was sentenced by a U.S. federal court in Washington to 1-3 years in prison for concealing his Communist affiliations while applying for a passport.

Economics and finance
The International Conference on Trade and Employment completed work in Havana on an International Trade Organization Charter, emphasizing principles of global free trade. The conference also established an interim committee of the International Trade Organization, to function until enough nations ratified the charter to make the ITO a specialized United Nations agency.

U.S. President Harry Truman named a three-man board to investigate the 10-day-old strike of 400,000 coal miners, while the Interstate Commerce Commission ordered a 25% reduction in coal-burning rail freight traffic in order to conserve coal during the strike.

Stanley Cup
Boston 4 @ Toronto 5 (OT) (Toronto led best-of-seven series 1-0)
New York 1 @ Detroit 2 (Detroit led best-of-seven series 1-0)

Nick Metz scored at 17:03 of the 1st overtime period to give the Maple Leafs their win over the Bruins at Maple Leaf Gardens.

60 years ago

Hit parade
#1 singles in the U.S.A. (Billboard): Tequila--The Champs (Best Seller--2nd week at #1; Top 100--2nd week at #1); Catch a Falling Star--Perry Como (Disc Jockey--1st week at #1)

The U.S. State Department denied reports that the United States had delivered arms to Indonesian insurgents. U.S.-owned Caltex-Pacific and Standard Vacuum Oil companies resumed operations after receiving assurance from the Indonesian government that shipping terminals at Pakning and Dumi would be protected from further military action.

Politics and government
King Saud of Saudi Arabia issued a decree in Riyadh granting his brother Crown Prince Faisal, Saudi Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, "full power to lay down the state's internal, external and financial policies and to supervise [their] implementation."

Economics and finance
U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower and West German Economic Minister Ludwig Erhard met in Washington for a brief discussion of U.S.-German relations and economic matters.

Latin American coffee-producing nations announced in Mexico City that allcoffee exports had been suspended for an indefinite period until prices were stabilized.

The U.S. Senate Select Committee on Improper Labor-Management Activities reported that "union funds in excess of $10 million were either stolen, embezzled or misused by union officials over a period of 15 years."

Popular culture
Rock and roll singer Elvis Presley was inducted into the U.S. Army in Memphis.

50 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Ireland (IRMA): The Legend of Xanadu--Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich

The United Nations Security Council unanimously condemned the Israeli use of a force of 15,000 men to cross into Jordan three days earlier to wipe out guerrilla bases which had been used to stage raids against Israel.

Politics and government
The National Assembly of Panama voted to oust President Marco Robles, 10 days after impeaching him for interfering in the political campaign for an election scheduled for May 12. Mr. Robles had ignored the earlier vote, and was waiting for a Supreme Court ruling on the move. The Assembly named Max Delvalle to succeed Mr. Robles as President. Mr. Robles again refused to recognize the Assembly’s action, and was backed by the 4,800-man Guard unit. Clashes began between the Guard and angry Panamanians.

61 were killed when an Irish International Viscount 4-engine turboprop crashed into the Irish Sea.

Eastern Division Semi-Finals
Detroit 116 @ Boston 123 (Boston led best-of-seven series 1-0)

Western Division Semi-Finals
Chicago 101 @ Los Angeles 109 (Los Angeles led best-of-seven series 1-0)

Eastern Division Semi-Finals
Kentucky 102 @ Minnesota 115 (Minnesota led best-of-five series 1-0)

40 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Sweden (Topplistan): It's a Heartache--Bonnie Tyler (3rd week at #1)

#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): Das Lied der Schlümpfe--Vader Abraham & Die Schlümpfe

#1 single in France: We Will Rock You/We are the Champions--Queen

Somalia announced that it had completed its withdrawal of forces from Ethiopia’s Ogaden region in accordance with a promise made on March 9.

Violent seas split the wreck of the Liberian super tanker Amoco Cadiz, destroying any hopes of salvaging any remaining oil.

The Buffalo Bills traded running back O.J. Simpson to the San Francisco 49ers for five draft choices. Mr. Simpson had been with the Bills since 1969, and had set the National Football League record for yards rushing in a season with 2,003 in 1973.

30 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Spain (PROMUSICAE): Always on My Mind--Pet Shop Boys (6th week at #1)

#1 single in Finland (Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland): I Should Be So Lucky--Kylie Minogue

This blogger found out that he was a winner of one of the second prizes in the Canadian Football League's contest to guess who would be chosen on the 1987 All-Canadian All-Star team. My prize was a copy of Canadian artist Ken Danby's print The Grey Cup, which Mr. Danby had done for the 75th Grey Cup observance in 1987. 495 copies of the print were made. The first prize was a trip to the 1988 Grey Cup in Ottawa.

World events
After a 7-month secret trial, Mordechai Vanunu, an employee at a bomb-making factory in Israel, was convicted of espionage, transmission of information, and aiding the nation’s enemies. For an undisclosed 6-figure sum, Mr. Vanunu had disclosed secrets of Israel’s atomic weapons program to the Sunday Times of London. Independent observers said that Mr. Vanunu’s revelations showed that Israel had a greater nuclear capability than western observers had assumed, and that Israel could build up to 200 bombs, as well as neutron and hydrogen weapons.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Sweden (Topplistan): No Limit--2 Unlimited (5th week at #1)

On television tonight
The Wonder Years, on ABC
Tonight's episode: Poker

Died on this date
Albert Arlen, 88
. Australian composer. Mr. Arlen was best known for his musical The Sentimental Bloke (1961) and Alamein Concerto (1944).

John Hersey, 78. U.S. author. Mr. Hersey won the Pulitzer Prize for his novel A Bell for Adano (1944) and was widely praised for his lengthy essay Hiroshima, which first appeared in the August 31, 1946 issue of The New Yorker.

Astronomers Carolyn and Eugene Shoemaker and David Levy, working at the Palomar Observatory in California, discovered Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9, which was captured by, and orbiting Jupiter.

South African President F.W. de Klerk revealed that South Africa had built six crude atomic bombs and was working on a seventh when the decision was made to scrap the program in 1989 and destroy the arsenal.

10 years ago

U.S. President Bill Clinton, speaking in Kampala, Uganda, indulged in his vomit-inspiring habit of confessing other people’s sins when he expressed regret for America’s role in African slavery (conveniently ignoring the slavery that was currently going on in Africa).

In U.S. President Clinton’s home state of Arkansas, Mitchell Johnson, 13, and his 11-year-old cousin Andrew Golden, opened fire at Westside Middle School in Jonesboro, killing 4 girls and a teacher, and wounding 11. The older boy, who had a history of torturing animals, had apparently vowed to get revenge on all the girls who had broken up with him (a rather large number, it seems). The names of the victims should be mentioned: Natalie Brooks, 11; Paige Ann Herring, 12; Stephanie Johnson, 12 (no relation to Mitchell Johnson); Brittheny R. Varner, 11; Shannon Wright, 32 (teacher).

Politics and government
The Nova Scotia provincial election resulted in the governing Liberals, under Premier Russell MacLellan, and the New Democratic Party, led by Robert Chisholm, each winning 19 seats in the House of Assembly, while the Conservatives, led by John Hamm, won 14 seats. The Liberals went into the election with 40 seats, with the Conservatives holding 9 and the NDP 3. Mr. MacLellan was able to hold on to power with a minority government, supported by the Conservatives.

The first computer-assisted bone segment navigation was performed at the University of Regensburg, Germany.

A tornado swept through Dantan, India, killing 250 people and injuring 3,000 others.

10 years ago

Died on this date
Richard Widmark, 93
. U.S. actor. Mr. Widmark acted on radio and stage in the 1930s and '40s before making his movie debut as a psychotic killer in Kiss of Death (1947), for which he was nominated for an Academy Award. He was capable of playing villains or heroes, and often played cowboys, military officers, or detectives in movies too numerous to name here.

Neil Aspinall, 66. U.K. record executive and manager. Mr. Aspinall was the Beatles' road manager and personal assistant, and served as chief executive of their company Apple Corps. He died of lung cancer.

Politics and government
The Bhutan Peace and Prosperity Party, led by Jigme Thinley, won 45 out of 47 seats in the National Assembly of Bhutan in the country's first-ever general election. The People's Democratic Party, led by Sangay Ngedup, won the remaining 2 seats.

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