Wednesday, 27 March 2019

March 27, 2019

Born on this date
Happy Birthday, Beth Nyambura!

710 years ago

World events
Pope Clement V imposed excommunication and interdiction on Venice, and a general prohibition of all commercial intercourse with Venice, which had seized on Ferrara, a papal fiefdom.

690 years ago

Pope John XXII issued his In Agro Dominico, condemning some writings of Meister Eckhart as heretical.

225 years ago

Denmark and Sweden formed a neutrality compact.

To protect American merchant ships from Barbary pirates, the U.S. Congress passed the Naval Act, and authorized the building of six frigates, including the Constitution ("Old Ironsides").

210 years ago

A combined Franco-Polish force defeated Spanish forces in the Battle of Ciudad Real.

180 years ago

Born on this date
John Ballance
. U.K.-born N. Z. politician. Mr. Ballance emigrated to New Zealand at the age of 27. He founded the Liberal Party and served as leader of the opposition from 1889-1891 and as Prime Minister from 1891 until his death at the age of 54 on April 27, 1893 after an operation for an intestinal disease.

170 years ago

Died on this date
Archibald Acheson, 2nd Earl of Gosford, 72
. Governor General of British North America, 1835-1837. Lord Gosford represented Armagh County from 1798-1807, first in the Irish House of Commons, and then, after the act of Union, in the British House of Commons. He entered the House of Lords after succeeding his father as Earl of Gosford. Lord Gosford was Governor General of British North America at the time of the Lower Canada Rebellion in 1837, and declared martial law. He resigned in November 1837, and was succeeded by Lord Durham, who implemented the Union Act uniting Upper and Lower Canada, which Lord Gosford had argued against.

150 years ago

Born on this date
James McNeill
. Governor-General of the Irish Free State, 1928-1932. Mr. McNeill served in the Provisional Government under Michael Collins, and helped to draft the Constitution of the Irish Free State. He resigned as Governor-General a month before his intended retirement after clashing with Executive Council President Éamon de Valera, and died in London on December 12, 1938 at the age of 69.

J. R. Clynes. U.K. politician. John Robert Clynes, a member of the Labour Party, represented Manchester North East (1906-1918)/Manchester Platting (1918-1931, 1935-1945) in the House of Commons, holding two cabinet posts in the coalition government of Prime Minister David Lloyd George from 1917-1919, advocating for the interests of working classes. He led the party from 1921-1922, but was replaced by Ramsay MacDonald despite having led Labour to a breakthrough in the general election, increasing from 52 seats to 142. Mr. Clynes served as deputy leader of the Labour Party from 1922-1932, and was Home Secretary from 1929-1931. He died on October 23, 1949 at the age of 80.

Died on this date
James Harper, 73
. U.S. publisher and politician. Mr. Harper and his brother John founded a printing firm in 1817, and expanded it to include publishing in 1825, under the name Harper & Brothers; the firm still exists as part of HarperCollins. Mr. Harper, running as the candidate of the American Republican Party, was elected Mayor of New York City in 1844. He established the first municipal police force and began work on establishing a city sanitation system, but was defeated in his bid for re-election in 1845. Mr. Harper died 17 days before his 74th birthday.

140 years ago

Born on this date
Miller Huggins
. U.S. baseball player and manager. Mr. Huggins was a second baseman with the Cincinnati Reds (1904-1909) and St. Louis Cardinals (1910-1916), batting .265 with 9 home runs, 318 runs batted in, and 324 stolen bases in 1,585 games. He led the National League in bases on balls four times, and was regarded as a good defensive second baseman. Mr. Huggins managed the Cardinals (1913-1917) and New York Yankees (1918-1929), compiling a record of 1,413-1,124. He led the Yankees to their first two American League pennants in 1921 and 1922, followed by their first World Series championship in 1923. Another pennant came in 1926, followed by World Series championships in 1927 and 1928, with the 1927 Yankees being widely regarded as the best team in baseball history. In 1929, the Yankees were a distant second behind the Philadelphia Athletics, and Mr. Huggins developed a skin condition known as erysipelas, growing from a carbuncle that developed under one eye. The condition grew worse, and he died on September 25, 1929 at the age of 50, with 11 games remaining in the season. Mr. Huggins had frequent clashes with star right fielder Babe Ruth, but eventually prevailed, and the Babe was among those who cried when notified of his death. Mr. Huggins was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1964.

Sándor Garbai. Prime Minister of Hungary, 1919. Mr. Garbai was a member of the Hungarian Social Democratic Party, who advocated union with the Communist Party. This took place on March 21, 1919, as the Hungarian Soviet Republic was established. Mr. Garbai was Prime Minister and Chairman of the Central Executive Council, but Foreign Minister Béla Kun wielded the real power, and Mr. Garbai was forced out of both offices on August 1, 1919. He died in Paris on November 7, 1947 at the age of 68.

Edward Steichen. Luxembourg-born U.S. painter and photographer. Mr. Steichen moved to New York with his family as an infant. He was a skilled drawer, lithographer, and painter, but became one of the most famous photographers of the 20th century, often in partnership with Alfred Stieglitz. His photograph The Pond--Moonlight (1904), in which he applied layers of light-sensitive gums to simulate colour, sold at auction in 2006 for a record $2.9 million. Mr. Steichen directed the Academy Award-winning documentary The Fighting Lady (1944), and created the travelling museum exhibit The Family of Man (1955). He died on March 25, 1973, two days before his 94th birthday.

130 years ago

Died on this date
John Bright, 77
. U.K. politician. Mr. Bright, a Liberal, sat in the House of Commons from 1843 until his death. He founded the Anti-Corn Law League, aimed at abolishing the laws that were seen as unfairly protecting the interests of landowners. Mr. Bright supported free trade, electoral reform, and religious freedom, and was opposed to England's involvement in the Crimean War.

120 years ago

Born on this date
Gloria Swanson
. U.S. actress. The 4’ 11½" Miss Swanson began her screen career in 1915, and spent her early years as an actress in slapstick Mack Sennett comedies. She eventually took on more dramatic roles, and her salary rose accordingly, to $6,500 U.S. per week by 1923. Miss Swanson spent money as fast as she made it; it was estimated that she made $8 million in the 1920s, and spent almost all of it. Miss Swanson’s favourite of her movies was reportedly Madame Sans-Gêne (1925), which is now lost. Another one of her favourites was Beyond the Rocks (1922), her only movie with Rudolf Valentino, which was considered a lost movie until a print was discovered in a private collection in the Netherlands a few years ago. Among her notable movies were Sadie Thompson (1928) and Queen Kelly (1929). Miss Swanson made the transition to sound in the late 1920s and early 1930s, but the kind of characters she usually played went out of fashion. She acted on stage through the 1940s, then made a big comeback on screen with her most memorable role, that of faded silent star Norma Desmond in Sunset Blvd. (1950). According to the script, Norma Desmond was only 50 years old, but when you watch the movie, it’s hard not to get the impression that the character seems much older. If you’re wondering what movie it is that Norma Desmond is screening in Sunset Blvd., it’s Queen Kelly. Miss Swanson was nominated for the Academy Award for best actress for Sadie Thompson (1928); The Trespasser (1929); and Sunset Blvd. (1950). Her last film role was as herself in Airport 1975 (1974). As her acting roles declined in the 1950s and beyond, Miss Swanson kept busy as a clothes designer, founded Essence of Nature cosmetics, and became a prominent promoter of health foods. She also appeared as a guest on television programs. Gloria Swanson was married at least six times and had numerous affairs, the most notable of which was with Joseph P. Kennedy; in fact, it was Mr. Kennedy who financed Queen Kelly. She died on April 4, 1983, eight days after her 84th birthday.

Emilio Aguinaldo led Filipino forces for the only time during the Philippine–American War, in the Battle of Marilao River, which resulted in a victory for U.S. forces.

110 years ago

Born on this date
Ben Webster
. U.S. musician. Mr. Webster was a jazz tenor saxophonist who played in a number of bands, most notably with Duke Ellington's orchestra from 1935-1943, where he was a featured soloist. He died of a cerebral hemorrhage on September 20, 1973 at the age of 64.

80 years ago

Men's Championship
Final @ Evanston, Illinois
Oregon 46 Ohio State 33

75 years ago

On the radio
The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, starring Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce, on MBS
Tonight's episode: The Haunted Bagpipes

A fourth column of Japanese troops entered the Indian state of Manipur from the Sumra jungle area on the Burmese border. Three German attacks on the Allied beachhead at Anzio were repulsed. The Polish Telegraph Agency announced that underground leaders in Poland had been instructed to get in touch with Soviet military leaders "to coordinate military operations against the Germans.

The American Academy of Arts and Letters announced that its Award of Merit and $1,000 cash prize would go to novelist Theodore Dreiser.

The Montreal School of Graphic Arts was officially opened.

The U.S. Supreme Court refused to review the conviction of German-born journalist and propagandist George S. Viereck under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

Economics and finance
The U.S. Supreme Court sustained the power of the Office of Price Administration to fix ceiling prices on meats and rents.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that miners must be paid for time spent going from the face of the mine to working places.

A $90,000 suit by Operas on Tour against American Federation of Musicians president James C. Petrillo was announced in New York. The suit alleged that Mr. Petrillo had interfered with the plaintiff's efforts to present grand opera through recordings.

70 years ago

On the radio

Pat Novak For Hire, starring Jack Webb, on ABC
Tonight's episode: Joe Candono Blackmail Pictures

The Italian Senate approved "in principle" Italy's participation in the North Atlantic security system, as Foreign Minister Carlo Sforza arrived in Washington to sign the agreement.

Politics and government
Gaullists gained 223 seats and Communists lost 147 seats in special district runoff elections in France.

The Cultural and Scientific Conference for World Peace ended its three-day session in New York after passing resolutions for the strengthening of the United Nations and the creation of a permanent committee to work for world peace.

The Congress of Industrial Organizations Farm Equipment Workers union ended a three-day convention in Cedar Rapids, Iowa after rejecting CIO demands that it merge with the United Auto Workers of America.

60 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in the U.K. (New Musical Express): Side Saddle--Russ Conway

A scientific symposium in Washington concluded that the outer Van Allen radiation belt was caused by particles of hot, energetic solar gases trapped in Earth's magnetic field.

World events
Chinese Communist authorities closed the Indian-Tibetan border and broadcast assurances that the Dalai Lama's personal sanctity would be protected.

U.S.S.R. jet fighters harassed U.S. transport planes flying in air corridors between Berlin and West Germany in an effort to make them conform to a Soviet-imposed ceiling of 10,000 feet.

The United States and Bulgaria announced an agreement on the resumption of full diplomatic relations, broken since 1950.

Pope John XXIII deleted references to Jews as "perfidious" from Good Friday services.

50 years ago

On television tonight
Dragnet 1969, on NBC
Tonight's episode: Juvenile: DR-32

The United States launched Mariner 7, a probe headed for Mars to investigate that planet's polar conditions.

The NLF and North Vietnam termed the American and South Vietnamese suggestion for private talks to break the Paris peace talks impasse as deceitful, although they did not totally reject the idea.

British Prime Minister Harold Wilson began a five-day visit to Nigeria.

40 years ago

On television tonight
The Paper Chase, on CBS
Tonight's episode: The Tables Down at Ernie's

Politics and government
In Texas, a court order halted municipal elections in Houston and Dallas, as the U.S. Justice Department and federal courts investigated the apparent failure of those cities to enforce the Federal Voting Rights Act.

30 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Australia (Australian Music Report): She Drives Me Crazy--Fine Young Cannibals

#1 single in Spain (PROMUSICAE): Like a Prayer--Madonna (3rd week at #1)

Died on this date
May Allison, 98
. Miss Allison was a star in the early days of silent films, and was romantically teamed with Harold Lockwood in 25 movies from 1915-1918, becoming Hollywood's first popular on-screen romantic team, until Mr. Lockwood died in the influenza epidemic in 1918. Miss Allison retired from movies after The Telephone Girl (1927).

Malcolm Cowley, 90. U.S. writer. Mr. Cowley was known for Blue Juniata (1929), a book of poetry; Exile's Return (1934/1951), a memoir of life among American expatriates in Paris after World War I; and for his many years from 1944 through the 1980s as an editor and talent scout at Viking Press. He served as an analyst with the U.S. War Department's Office of Facts and Figures from 1941-1942, but resigned amidst accusations of Communist sympathies.

Politics and government
Many Communist Party candidates were defeated in elections for the U.S.S.R. Congress of People's Deputies.

William Parkin, a defense consultant, pled guilty to bribing a public official, wire fraud, and fraud conspiracy in connection with a plan to help Teledyne Electronics obtain a U.S. Air Force contract. The official who received the bribe, U.S. Navy contract specialist Stuart Berlin, had pleaded guilty on March 23 to wire fraud and receiving bribes.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand: Gangsta Lean--DRS

#1 single in Austria (Ö3): All for Love--Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart and Sting (7th week at #1)

#1 single in Switzerland: Move on Baby--Cappella (3rd week at #1)

#1 single in the U.K. (Chart Information Network): Doop--Doop (3rd week at #1)

Died on this date
Lawrence Wetherby, 86
. U.S. politician. Mr. Wetherby, a Democrat, was Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky from 1947-1950 and Governor of Kentucky from 1950-1955. As chairman of the Southern Governors Conference in 1954 and 1955, he encouraged other southern governors to accept and implement racial desegregation. Mr. Wetherby was elected to the Kentucky Senate in 1966, and was its President Pro Tempore from 1966-1968. He died of complications from a broken hip.

The European Fighter Aircraft made its maiden flight in Germany, two years later than expected.

Politics and government
Two days of voting concluded in the first Italian general election since the adoption of a new electoral law that had been approved in reaction to widespread corruption. Under the new rules, 3/4 of the seats in both houses of parliament were to be filled from single-seat constituencies, with the remainder assigned proportionally based on the relative popular strength of the parties. The Alliance for Freedom, a coalition of three conservative parties, obtained 43% of the vote for the Chamber of Deputies (the lower house), with half of that going to Forzia Italiana, led by Silvio Berlusconi, who had promised to cut taxes. The smallest of the conservative coalition parties, the National Alliance, widely regarded as neo-Fascist, captured 8% of the vote. The Communist-dominated Progressive Alliance took 34% of the vote, and a centrist party coalition led by the Popular Party (formerly the Christian Democrats) took 16% of the vote. Mr. Berlusconi's alliance won 366 of 630 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 156 of 312 seats in the Senate. The Alliance of Progressives, led by Achille Occhetto, took 213 seats in the Chamber and 122 in the Senate. The pact for Italy, led by Mariotto Segni, won 46 seats in the House and 34 in the Senate.

Figure Skating
Elvis Stojko of Canada won the gold medal in men's singles competition at the World Championships in Chib, Japan.

20 years ago

World events
Spain added 33 new criminal charges against former Chilean President General Augusto Pinochet.

A United States Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk was shot down over Bosnia-Herzegovina; the pilot was rescued.

Boston 2 @ Toronto 2

10 years ago

Died on this date
Irving R. Levine, 86
. U.S. journalist. Mr. Levine was a correspondent with NBC News from 1950-1995. He was a foreign correspondent for most of his career including 12 years in Rome. In 1981, Mr. Levine became NBC's first full-time economics reporter. He died of complications from prostate cancer.

U.S. President Barack Obama launched a fresh effort to defeat al-Qaida terrorists in both Pakistan and Afghanistan, ordering in 4,000 more troops.

The dam forming Situ Gintung, an artificial lake in Tangerang District, Indonesia, failed, killing at least 100 people.

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