Saturday, 2 February 2019

February 2, 2019

Born on this date
Happy Birthday, Sandy Ting and Simon O'Byrne!

510 years ago

Born on this date
Jan van Leiden (John of Leiden)
. Dutch-born religious leader. Jan van Leiden was a leader of the Anabaptists, an offshoot of the Reformation known for practicing baptism only on those who confess their faith in Jesus Christ and want to be baptized. Jan moved to Münster in 1533 and was a leader of the Münster Rebellion, proclaiming himself "King of Münster," and attempting to turn the city into an Anabaptist theocracy. The insurrection was overthrown in 1535 after a siege; Jan was captured, tortured, and executed on January 22, 1536, 11 days before his 27th birthday, along with fellow Anabaptist leaders Bernhard Knipperdolling and Bernhard Krechting.

370 years ago

Born on this date
Benedict XIII
. Roman Catholic Pope, 1724-1730. Benedict XIII, born Pietro Francesco Orsini, was a Dominican friar who was ordained a priest in 1671. He held several bishoprics before succeeding Innocent XIII as pope. Benedict XIII focused on his religious responsibilities as bishop rather than on papal administration. His political naivety led him to rely on Cardinal Niccolò Coscia, a secretary whose financial abuses ruined the papal treasury. Benedict XIII died of an attack of catarrh on February 21, 1730, 19 days after his 81st birthday. He was succeeded as pope by Clement XII.

350 years ago

Born on this date
Louis Marchand
. French musician and composer. Mr. Marchand was an organ and harpsichord virtuoso who was known for his violent temper and scandalous behaviour. Relatively few of his works survive; those that do are mainly for organ, with a few for harpsichord. Mr. Marchand died on February 17, 1732, 15 days after his 63rd birthday.

310 years ago

World events
English privateer Alexander Selkirk was rescued by another English privateer, Woodes Rogers, after spending more than four years as a castaway on a desert island in the Spanish-owned Juan Fernández Islands. The incident is believed to have inspired Daniel Defoe's adventure book Robinson Crusoe (1719).

250 years ago

Died on this date
Clement XIII, 75
. Roman Catholic Pope, 1758-1769. Clement XIII, born Carlo della Torre di Rezzonico, succeeded Benedict XIV. Clement XIII received a Jesuit education and defended the Jesuits against pressure to suppress them. He also favoured dialogue with Old Catholic Protestants in an attempt to mend the schism between them, but met with little success. Pope Clement died of apoplexy, the night before the scheduled meeting of a consistory to consider suppression of the Jesuits, which led to suspicions that he had been poisoned. Clement XIII was succeeded as Pope by Clement XIV.

150 years ago

Politics and government
Lord Lisgar was installed as Governor General of Canada, succeeding Lord Monck.

130 years ago

Born on this date
Pitrim Sorokin
. Russian-born U.S. sociologist. Professor Sorokin was an anti-Communist and a member of the Socialist Revolutionary Party who supported the White Movement during the Russian Revolution. He eventually fled the country and emigrated to the United States in 1923, and founded the Harvard University Department of Sociology. Prof. Sorokin's best-known work was the four-volume Social and Cultural Dynamics (1937-1941), in which he classified societies according to their "cultural mentality," which can be "ideational" (reality is spiritual), "sensate" (reality is material), or "idealistic" (a synthesis of the two). He suggested that major civilizations evolve from an ideational to an idealistic, and eventually to a sensate mentality. Prof. Sorokin died on February 10, 1968, eight days after his 79th birthday.

120 years ago

The Australian Premiers' Conference in Melbourne decided to locate Australia's capital city, Canberra, between Sydney and Melbourne.

Israel Tarte was appointed head of the Paris Exposition Commission for Canada, to organize the Canadian display at the 1900 World's Fair in Paris.

100 years ago

Died on this date
Julius Kuperjanov, 24
. Estonian military officer. Lieutenant Kuperjanov commanded the Tartumaa Partisan Battalion during the Estonian War of Independence, and was among the liberators of Tartu on January 14, 1919. He died two days after being wounded in the victorious Battle of Paju.

80 years ago


The Japanese submarine I-36 sank in the Bungo Channel, killing 81.

75 years ago

Soviet troops penetrated one-half mile inside Estonia, 11 miles north of Narva, and captured Vanakula. U.S. Marines captured Roi Island at the northern end of Kwajalein atoll in the Marshall Islands.

Economics and finance
The American Iron & Steel Institute reported 1943 steel production at 88,872,598 tons, with 98.1% of capacity at work.

Argentine President Pedro Ramirez decreed that radio stations in Argentina must be wholly owned and managed by citizens who had resided in Argentina for at least 18 years.

70 years ago

South Korea formally applied for admission to the United Nations.

U.S. Secretary of State Dean Acheson held a press conference to give the U.S. response to U.S.S.R. dictator Josef Stalin's proposal for a peace conference. Mr. Acheson stated that the United States would not engage in bilateral negotiations on matters affecting other nations, and claimed that "normal [diplomatic] channels" should be adequate to resolve ther Berlin dispute and other East-West difficulties.

Politics and government
Hungarian opposition leader Istvan Barankovics dissolved the Catholic People's Party in protest against government policies.

Ben Hogan narrowly survived a head-on car crash with a bus in Texas. For a time it appeared he might never play again, but he recovered from his injuries and won the United States Open 16 months later at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pennsylvania, defeating Lloyd Mangrum and George Fazio in an 18-hole playoff.

60 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Spain (PROMUSICAE): Como Antes (Come Prima)--Los 5 Latinos

U.S.A. Top 10 (Billboard)
1 Smoke Gets in Your Eyes--The Platters (3rd week at #1)
2 The All American Boy--Bill Parsons
3 Donna--Ritchie Valens
4 16 Candles--The Crests
5 Stagger Lee--Lloyd Price
6 My Happiness--Connie Francis
7 Gotta Travel On--Billy Grammer
8 Lonely Teardrops--Jackie Wilson
9 A Lover's Question--Clyde McPhatter
10 Goodbye Baby--Jack Scott

Singles entering the chart were Charlie Brown by the Coasters (#69); (I'll Be with You In) Apple Blossom Time by Tab Hunter (#76); Give Me Your Love (#96)/Madrid (#100) by Nat "King" Cole; Teardrops Will Fall by Dicky Doo and the Dont's (#97); and The Hanging Tree by Marty Robbins (#99). The Hanging Tree was the title song of the movie.

Vancouver's Top 10 (CKWX)
1 Gotta Travel On--Billy Grammer (4th week at #1)
2 The All American Boy--Bill Parsons
3 Smoke Gets in Your Eyes--The Platters
4 Goodbye Baby--Jack Scott
5 My Happiness--Connie Francis
6 Manhattan Spiritual--Reg Owen and his Orchestra
7 The Children's Marching Song (Nick Nack Paddy Whack)--Cyril Stapleton and his Orchestra
--Mitch Miller and his Orchestra
8 Stagger Lee--Lloyd Price
9 16 Candles--The Crests
10 Donna/La Bamba--Ritchie Valens

Singles entering the chart were the version of The Children's Marching Song (Nick Nack Paddy Whack) by Mitch Miller and his Orchestra; Plain Jane by Bobby Darin (#43); (I'll Be with You In) Apple Blossom Time by Tab Hunter (#44); Story of My Love by Conway Twitty (#48); Charlie Brown by the Coasters (#52); The Shag by Billy Graves (#53); Who Cares by Don Gibson (#58); and Blah, Blah, Blah by Nicola Paone (#60).

The Winter Dance Party tour continued as Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the Big Bopper performed at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa. Afterward, Mr. Holly chartered a Beechcraft Bonanza to take him and his backup musicians, Tommy Allsup and Waylon Jennings, to Fargo, North Dakota, en route to the next leg of the tour at the Armory in Moorhead, Minnesota.

Soviet officers at the Marienborn autobahn checkpoint between East and West Germany detained a U.S. Army truck convoy bound from West Berlin to East Germany when its commander refused to submit the trucks to detailed inspection.

Politics and government
The British House of Commons voted to revoke the constitution granted to Malta in 1947.

Indira Gandhi, 41, the daughter of Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and wife of member of parliament Feroze Gandhi, was unanimously elected president of the Indian National Congress Party.

The Cuban government began to put into effect an agrarian reform law designed to benefit 200,000 families through distribution of 33-100 acres of land to landless farmers.

Negro children in Norfolk and Arlington, Virginia attended previously all-white schools for the first time, without serious disorders.

Cincinnati Reds' pitcher Don Newcombe and his brothers Norman and Harold were acquitted in Newark, New Jersey of assault charges brought by former policeman Ulysses Rose after a fracas in the Newcombes' tavern in 1957.

Nine experienced ski hikers in the northern Ural Mountains in the Soviet Union died under mysterious circumstances.

50 years ago

Died on this date
Boris Karloff, 81
. U.K.-born U.S. actor. Mr. Karloff, one of the most famous horror actors ever, was born William Henry Pratt on November 23, 1887. As a young man he came to Canada to work on the railway, and started his career on stage in Kamloops, British Columbia, later moving to Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. Mr. Karloff (he reportedly took the surname from a distant relative) eventually moved to Hollywood, and found some work as an extra. His big break came with the role of the monster in Frankenstein in 1931. He reprised the role just twice more: Bride of Frankenstein (1935) and Son of Frankenstein (1939). Starting with The Black Cat (1934), Mr. Karloff began teaming up with Bela Lugosi, and the two acted in a number of horror movies together, mainly for Universal studios. The best of the Boris & Bela movies are probably The Black Cat; The Raven (1935); and Son of Frankenstein. Non-horror movies that featured Mr. Karloff included Scarface (1932); The Lost Patrol (1934); The Black Room (1935); and Unconquered (1947). He also made occasional radio appearances in such series as Suspense and Inner Sanctum Mysteries. On television, Mr. Karloff was the host of the NBC series Thriller, which ran from 1960-1962; he also acted in five episodes. His most memorable role came in 1966 as the narrator of the Christmas classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas. This blogger's favourite television role for Mr. Karloff was the episode of Tales of Tomorrow titled Past Tense (1953), where he played an amateur scientist who went back in time 40 years and tried to introduce penicillin to people of an earlier time. Mr. Karloff continued to act in movies to the end. In the early 1960s he appeared in low-budget movies for director Roger Corman such as The Raven (1963) and The Terror (1963). His last big part came in Targets (1968), where he played an aging horror star who's decided to retire from acting because the horror of real life exceeds that on the screen. Mr. Karloff's final movies were four low-budget horror flicks filmed in Mexico, and released after his death (the last one came out in 1971). He also lent his name to a series of Gold Key comic books.

Jack Nicklaus won the Andy Williams-San Diego Open; first prize money was $30,000.

40 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Sweden (Topplistan): Too Much Heaven--Bee Gees (2nd week at #1)

#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): Y.M.C.A.--Village People (8th week at #1)

#1 single in France (IFOP): Tragedy--Bee Gees

Died on this date
Sid Vicious, 21
. U.K. musician. Mr. Vicious, born John Simon Ritchie, played bass guitar with the punk rock band the Sex Pistols from 1976-1978. After the group broke up early in 1978, he performed as a solo act, and became involved in a relationship in New York with a young woman named Nancy Spungen. The relationship was characterized by drug use and violence, and when she was found stabbed to death on October 12, 1978, Mr. Vicious was charged with her murder. He attempted suicide and was hospitalized before being releases on bail. In December, Mr. Vicious was charged with assault after attacking Todd Smith, brother of singer Patti Smith. Mr. Vicious underwent 55 days of forced detoxification and was reportedly clean of drugs when he was bailed out on February 1,1979. He attended a party where a friend delivered him heroin, and he died early the next morning after overdosing.

Politics and government
Iranian Prime Minister Shahpur Bakhtiar offered to include supporters of Shi'ite Muslim leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in a government of "national unity," but the Ayatollah continued to insist that Mr. Bakhtiar resign before they negotiate.

30 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Finland (Finnish Singles Chart): Back to the Stone Age--Stone (6th week at #1)

#1 single in Ireland (IRMA): Something's Gotten Hold of My Heart--Marc Almond featuring Gene Pitney

Died on this date
Arnold Nordmeyer, 87
. N.Z. politician. Rev. Nordmeyer was a Presbyterian minister who joined the Labour Party in 1933, and represented Oamaru (1935-1949), Brooklyn (1951-1954), and Island Bay (1954-1969) in Parliament. He was Minister of Health (1941-1947); Minister of Finance (1957-1960); President of the Labour Party (1950-1955); and Leader of the Labour Party and Leader of the Opposition (1963-1965). Mr. Nordmeyer died five days before his 88th birthday.

Ondrej Nepela, 38. Czechoslovakian figure skater. Mr. Nepela won the European men's championship for five straight years (1969-1973); the men's world championship for three straight years (1971-1973); and the gold medal in the Winter Olympic Games (1972). He skated professionally with Holiday on Ice (1973-1986), and became a coach. He died 11 days after his 38th birthday, officially from cancer of the lymph nodes, but more likely of AIDS.

World events
A violent coup against Paraguayan dictator Alfredo Stroessner began.

Withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan continued as the last armoured column left the capital of Kabul.

Japanese Prime Minister Noboru Takeshita met in Washington with U.S. President George Bush. The two reportedly discussed political, military, and economic matters.

U.S. Vice President Dan Quayle was in Caracas, where he attended the inauguration of Venezuelan President Carlos Andres Perez. Mr. Quayle criticized former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, who was also in Caracas, for meeting with Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega.

Politics and government
Bowing to public pressure, the United States Senate voted 95-5 to reject a proposal to raise their own pay as well as that of judges and top officials in the executive branch. The pay raises, running to 50% and more, had been approved by President Ronald Reagan in early January, but had been widely opposed by the American public.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Sweden (Topplistan): All for Love--Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart and Sting (7th week at #1)

Kavita Duggal starred in a performance of The World of Apu at the HUB International Centre on the campus of the University of Alberta in Edmonton.

Politics and government
South African President F.W. de Klerk announced that the country's national elections, in which people of all races would choose national and regional assemblies, would be held April 26-28. He also launched his own campaign for re-election.

Economics and finance
The United States Commerce Department reported that the index of leading economic indicators had increased 0.7% in December 1993.

20 years ago

In Wiarton, Ontario, the Wiarton Willie Groundhog Day Festival was mired in scandal as the organizers discovered, only a couple of days before the big event, that Willie had died while hibernating during the winter; they put what they claimed was a lifeless Willie in a little casket with pennies over his eyes and clutching a carrot. The scandal erupted when it leaked out that his real body was so badly decomposed it could not be shown to the public; instead, organizers put a stuffed version in the casket. For the next five years a replacement, "Wee Willie,” fulfilled the role until he was replaced by "Wee Willie II."

10 years ago

Politics and government
Former U.S. First Lady and Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton was sworn in as Secretary of State.

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