Thursday, 21 January 2021

January 22, 2021

Born on this date
Happy Birthday, Betty Walters!

1,150 years ago

The West Saxons, led by King Æthelred I, were defeated by the Danelaw Vikings in the Battle of Basing.

460 years ago

Born on this date
Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount St Alban
. English philosopher, scientist, and politician. Sir Francis has been called the father of empiricism and the father of the scientific method, arguing for the possibility of scientific knowledge based only upon inductive reasoning and careful observation of events in nature. A belief that he was the true author of the plays attributed to William Shakespeare gained popularity in the late 9th century, but is now largely rejected. Sir Francis developed a system for cataloguing in libraries, and was the first person to be designated Queen's counsel, when Queen Elizabeth I named him as her legal adviser. He was Attorney General for England and Wales (1613-1617) and Lord High Chancellor of England (1617-1621), but his public career ended in disgrace in 1621 when he was censured by a parliamentiary committee for corruption, and barred from further holding office or sitting in Parliament. Sir Francis died of pneumonia on April 9, 1626 at the age of 65.

240 years ago

Born on this date
François Habeneck
. French composer and conductor. Mr. Habeneck was joint First Conductor of the Paris Opera from 1824-1831 and its sole First Conductor from 1831-1846; he was Principal conductor of the Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire frmo 1828-1848. Mr. Habeneck composed two concertos, works for violin, and several songs. He died on February 8, 1849, 17 days after his 68th birthday.

160 years ago

Born on this date
George Fuller
. Australian politician. Sir George began his political career of nearly four decades free from party affiliation, but was later a member of several different parties. He represented Kiama (1889-1894) and Wollondilly (1915-1928) in the New South Wales Legislative Assembly, serving as Colonial Secretary (1916-1920) and taking the leadership of the Nationalist Party in 1917. On December 20, 1921, the N.S.W. government of Premier James Dooley lost a non-confidence vote, and Sir George was asked to form a government. Just seven hours later, his government was defeated on a non-confidence vote, and Mr. Dooley's Labour Party resumed governing. Sir George led the Nationalists to victory in the 1922 state election, and he served as Premier until 1925. Between his times in state politics, Sir George was in federal politics, representing Illawarra in the Australian Parliament (1901-1913). He served as Minister for Home Affairs (1909-1910) in the Commonwealth Liberal Party cabinet of Prime Minister Alfred Deakin, and was responsible for making Canberra the national capital. Sir George was N.S.W. Agent-General in London (1928-1931), and then returned to Australia, where he died on July 22, 1940 at the age of 79.

140 years ago

Born on this date
Ira Thomas
. U.S. baseball player. Mr. Thomas was a catcher with the New York Highlanders (1906-1907); Detroit Tigers (1908); and Philadelphia Athletics (1909-1915), batting .242 with 3 home runs and 155 runs batted in in 484 regular season games and .214 with no home runs and 3 runs batted in in 10 World Series games. He played on five teams that won American League pennants, and was with the Athletics when they won World Series in 1910, 1911, and 1913. In 1908, Mr. Thomas singled for the first pinch hit in World Series play. He was a scout with the Athletics for many years after his playing career ended, and died on October 11, 1958 at the age of 77.

130 years ago

Born on this date
Antonio Gramsci
. Italian philosopher and politician. Mr. Gramsci was a Marxist who joined the Italian Socialist Party in 1913 and helped to found the Partito Comunista d'Italia – PCI (Communist Party of Italy) in 1921, leading the party from 1921-1924. He became one of the most important figures in Marxist thought, emphasizing the importance of Marxists capturing political power by first capturing the culture of a society. Mr. Gramsci was exiled in 1926 and then imprisoned from 1927-1934 by the Fascist regime of Duce Benito Mussolini. He was conditionally released because of his poor health, and died on April 27, 1937 at the age of 46.

Franz Alexander. Austro-Hungarian-born U.S. psychoanalyst. Dr. Alexander, a native of Budapest, was associated with the Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute in the early 1920s, and in 1930 moved to the University of Chicago, working at the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis. In the 1950s he was one of the first members of the Society for General Systems Research. Dr. Alexander was one of the founders of psychosomatic medicine and psychoanalytic criminology. He died on March 8, 1964 at the age of 73.

125 years ago

The first women's hockey team in the Northwest Territories was organized in Regina.

120 years ago

Died on this date
Victoria, 81
. Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, 1837-1901; Empress of India, 1876-1901. The longest-serving monarch in British history (so far)--and the first in the history of Canada as a dominion--was born in Kensington Palace. Her predecessor on the throne, King William IV, had no children, and his niece Victoria, whose father had died when she was one year old, was next in line. She presided over an era known as "Pax Brittanica," and was succeeded by her eldest son, the Prince of Wales, who reigned as Edward VII.

110 years ago 1911 Born on this date
Bruno Kreisky
. Chancellor of Austria, 1970-1983. Mr. Kreisky, a Jewish agnostic, was a Socialist and served as Minister of Foreign Affairs in the coalition cabinets of Chancellors Julius Raab, Alfons Gorbach, and Josef Klaus from 1959-1966. The Socialists won a plurality of seats in the March 1970 elections, and Mr. Kreisky became Chancellor, becoming more powerful when the Socialists won a majority in the October 1971 elections. Under Mr. Kreisky, sodomy and abortion were decriminalized. Mr. Kreisky resigned after the Socialists lost their absolute majority in the Nationalrat in the April 1983 elections, and he declined to form a minority government. He died on July 29, 1990 at the age of 79.

90 years ago

On the radio
Tyrone Guthrie broadcast the first episode of The Romance of Canada in Montreal, the first series of radio dramas produced in Canada.

80 years ago

After a 20-day siege, Australian and Free French troops captured the Libyan city of Tobruk from Italian forces during Operation Compass, and took 14,000 additional Italian prisoners.

Codreanists revolting against Romanian Premier Ion Antonescu seized the Bucharest radio station and claimed control of government buildings and naval stations in Constanza.

Politics and government
The Japanese Diet surrendered its right to publicly examine the policies of the cabinet in exchange for a government promise not to amend the election law.

The Chilean Chamber of Deputies passed a bill outlawing the Communist Party.

Wendell Willkie, unsuccessful 1940 Republican Party candidate for President of the United States, departed for England aboard the Lisbon-bound Yankee Clipper, three days after conferring with President Roosevelt and Secretary of State Cordell Hull.

U.S. Senator George Norris (Independent--Nebraska), who had voted against America's entry into World War in in 1917, said that he favoured the Lend-Lease bill, but that it should be limited to two years. U.S. Socialist Party leader Norman Thomas testified before the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee that the Lend-Lease bill amounted to undeclared war.

James Clark McReynolds, who had been an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States since being appointed by President Woodrow Wilson in 1914, submitted his resignation to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, effective February 1, 1941.

More than 9,000 United Auto Workers at the Allis-Chalmers Manufacturing Company plant in West Allis, Wisconsin went on strike for a closed shop and higher wages. The company was working on $26-million worth of defense orders.

Three days after pitcher Bob Feller had signed his 1941 contract with the Cleveland Indians for $30,000--reportedly the highest salary ever paid to a pitcher--the Detroit Tigers revealed that they had paid Bobo Newsom $30,000 in 1940, and that he would be paid more in 1941. Mr. Newsom posted a record of 21-5 with an earned run average of 2.83 in helping the Tigers win the American League pennant in 1940, and was 2-1 with a 1.38 ERA in the World Series, which the Tigers lost to the Cincinnati Reds 4 games to 3.

75 years ago

At the hearings of the United States Senate committee on the December 7, 1941 Japanese attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, General Walter Short, Army commanding officer at Pearl Harbor at the time of the attack, stated that the War Department had made him a "scapegoat" instead of admitting its failure to supply him with real information.

World events
At Chahar Cheragh Square in the Kurdish city of Mahabad, Iran, Qazi Muhammad declared the independent people's Republic of Mahabad with himself as President and Haji Baba Sheikh as Prime Minister.

The United Kingdom announced that it would welcome a United Nations inquiry into its activities in Greece and the Dutch East Indies.

The U.S.A., U.S.S.R., and U.K. revealed an agreement to divide the main units of the German fleet equally among themselves.

United Press reported that current strikes in the United States were costing the 1.65 million workers involved about $13.5 million per day in wages.

Acting on a U.S. Supreme Court mandate, U.S. Federal Judge Philip Sullivan of Chicago dismissed the U.S. government's suit against Montgomery Ward & Company. The suit arose from then-U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt's order for the Army to seize seven Montgomery Ward plants after the company refused to carry out National War Labor Board orders.

13 people were killed when 20 carloads of surplus ammunition exploded and destroyed a large section of Torre Annunziata, Italy.

70 years ago

On the radio
Sherlock Holmes, read by Laidman Browne, on BBC
Tonight's episode: The Hound of the Baskervilles, Part 1

The Royal Canadian Navy destroyer HMCS Huron was put under United Nations command.

Former U.S. Commerce Department analyst William Remington took the stand at his perjury trial in New York City, denying that he was or ever had been a Communist.

Economics and finance
The U.S. President's Council of Economic Advisers, at a meeting of the Joint Congressional Economic Committee, urged immediate wage-price curbs and tax increases.

New York Yankees' shortstop Phil Rizzuto was named the first winner of the Hickok Belt as the top professional athlete of the year in the United States for his achievements in 1950. Mr. Rizzuto batted .324 with 7 home runs and 66 runs batted in in 155 games in 1950, leading the American League in plate appearances (735) and sacrifice bunts (19) as he helped the Yankees win the World Series for the second straight year, and was named the AL's Most Valuable Player.

In a Cuban winter league game between Cienfuegos and Marianao some "rowdies" overran the field, and one of them actually took to the mound and threw several pitches to future major league third baseman Don Hoak, who was batting at the time. The pitches were reportedly hard and wild, with Mr. Hoak yelling at the umpire to put a stop to it. At that point the umpire, with the help of local authorities, escorted the interlopers off the field. Mr. Hoak's unscheduled "relief pitcher" that day was former University of Havana star Fidel Castro, 24.

60 years ago

Born on this date
Happy Birthday, Nancy Lear!

The Portuguese cruise ship Santa Maria was hijacked in the Caribbean Sea at gunpoint by 24 Portuguese and Spanish political exiles and 6 crew members. The 20,906-ton luxury liner, carrying 607 passengers--including 42 Americans--and 350 crew members, had sailed from Lisbon two weeks earlier for a 6,150-mile Caribbean cruise with Port Everglades, Florida its final destination. The ship took on 24 more passengers--who turned out to be the pirates--at La Guaira, Venezuela and Curacao, Netherlands Antilles. The pirates were led by Henrique Galvo, 65, a former Portuguese army captain. They quickly recruited a crewman to their cause and seized the ship after a brief skirmish in which the Santa Maria’s third officer was killed by gunfire and a crewman was wounded. At the request of the Portuguese government, the U.S.A. and U.K. sent ships and planes to help find the Santa Maria.

A U.S. Navy Constellation crashed while landing on Midway Island, killing 6 of 22 airmen aboard the plane and 3 members of the ground crew.

50 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand (RIANZ): What Have They Done to My Song Ma--The New Seekers (2nd week at #1)

#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): A Song of Joy--Miguel Rios (15th week at #1)

South Africa's Top 10 (Springbok Radio)
1 Look Out Here Comes Tomorrow--The Dealians (2nd week at #1)
2 Looky Looky--Giorgio
3 I Hear You Knocking--Dave Edmunds
4 I Think I Love You--The Partridge Family
5 Cracklin' Rosie--Neil Diamond
6 Zanzibar--Wanda Arletti
7 Gypsy Woman--Brian Hyland
8 San Bernadino--Christie
9 Woodstock--Matthews Southern Comfort
10 You Can Get it if You Really Want--Desmond Dekker

Singles entering the chart were Knock Three Times by Dawn (#18); and No Matter What by Badfinger (#19).

Vancouver's Top 10 (CKLG)
1 Lonely Days-- Bee Gees
2 Knock Three Times--Dawn
3 Love the One You're With--Stephen Stills
4 I Hear You Knocking--Dave Edmunds
5 One Man Band--Three Dog Night
6 Your Song--Elton John
7 My Sweet Lord/Isn't it a Pity--George Harrison
8 Rose Garden--Lynn Anderson
9 Sing High, Sing Low--Anne Murray
10 Bridget the Midget (The Queen of the Blues)--Ray Stevens

Singles entering the chart were Hang on to Your Life/Do You Miss Me Darlin' by the Guess Who (#29); and Somebody's Watching You by Little Sister (#30).

Vancouver's Top 10 (CKVN)
1 I Hear You Knocking--Dave Edmunds
2 Lonely Days-- Bee Gees
3 Love the One You're With--Stephen Stills
4 I Think it's Going to Rain Today--Tom Northcott
5 If You Could Read My Mind--Gordon Lightfoot
6 Your Song--Elton John
7 My Sweet Lord--George Harrison
8 Sing High, Sing Low--Anne Murray
9 Knock Three Times--Dawn
10 If I were Your Woman--Gladys Knight & the Pips

Singles entering the chart were Have You Ever Seen the Rain/Hey Tonight by Creedence Clearwater Revival (#25); When I'm Dead and Gone by McGuinness Flint (#27); One Bad Apple by the Osmonds (#28); Watching Scotty Grow by Bobby Goldsboro (#29); and 1900 Yesterday by Liz Damon's Orient Express (#30).

Edmonton's Top 10 (CJCA)
1 My Sweet Lord--George Harrison (5th week at #1)
2 Knock Three Times--Dawn
3 Sing High, Sing Low--Anne Murray
4 Your Song--Elton John
5 If You Could Read My Mind--Gordon Lightfoot
6 Rose Garden--Lynn Anderson
7 Love the One You're With--Stephen Stills
8 Black Magic Woman--Santana
9 Silver Moon--Michael Nesmith & the First National Band
10 I Hear You Knocking--Dave Edmunds

On television tonight
The Interns, on CBS
Tonight’s episode: The Secret

Died on this date
Harry Frank Guggenheim, 80
. U.S. philanthropist, diplomat, and publisher. Mr. Guggenheim, the son of mining magnate Daniel Guggenheim, financed Robert Goddard's private research into liquid fuel rocketry and space flight; became president of the Daniel Guggenheim Fund for the Promotion of Aeronautics in 1926; and served on the National Advisory Committee of Aeronautics (1929-1938). He served as U.S. Ambassador to Cuba (1929-1933), and with his then-wife Alicia Patterson, founded the Long Island newspaper Newsday in 1940, serving as its publisher until 1967. Mr. Guggenheim died of cancer.

Communist commandos shelled central Pnompenh for the first time, at the same time penetrating Cambodia’s major airport and destroying much of its military fleet.

The United States Army dismissed all charges against the last four enlisted men--Sergeant Esequiel Torres; Specialist 4 Robert T'Souvas; Private Max Hutson; and Private Gerald A. Smith--in connection with the massacre of civilians in the South Vietnamese hamlet of My Lai on March 16, 1968. The charges were dropped on grounds of insufficient evidence.

The Singapore Declaration, one of the two most important documents to the uncodified constitution of the Commonwealth of Nations, was issued.

Politics and government
U.S. President Richard Nixon delivered his annual State of the Union message to Congress, calling for reform of the "entire structure" of the government, tantamount to "a new revolution." He said he would submit to Congress "six great goals" to make the government "fully responsive to the needs and wishes of the American people." His reform proposals covered welfare, the economy, and the sharing of power among the federal, state, and local governments, as well as radical changes in the federal government itself.

16 seamen were missing and presumed dead after explosions and fire devastated a U.S.-owned tanker near Capo Pecora, Sardinia.

40 years ago

Died on this date
Norman Strong, 86
. Northern Irish Protestant leader. Sir Norman and his son James, 48, were shot and killed in Belfast by terrorists. Responsibility for the murders was claimed by guerrillas of the Irish Republican Army, who stated that the killings were in reprisal for attacks on nationalists. Police felt that the people alluded to were Bernadette Devlin McAliskey and her husband Michael, who had been shot and wounded on January 16.

Government troops in El Salvador recaptured several towns that had been occupied by leftist guerrilla forces in the country’s civil war.

Hundreds of thousands of labour union members in 10 cities in Poland walked off the job for up to four hours to protest the Polish government’s stand against a five-day work week and the presence of 26 Soviet army divisions poised on the Polish border.

30 years ago

The Canadian House of Commons voted 217-47 to endorse the United Nations resolution on military action against Iraq; most New Democratic Party members voted against the bill. Iraq released more video footage of two captured American pilots with badly bruised faces who appeared to have been coerced into speaking out against the United Nations’ war against Iraq. U.S. President George Bush denounced the abuse of the pilots, saying it violated "every convention which protects prisoners." British Prime Minister John Major denounced Iraq’s plan to place the prisoners at strategic locations in order to discourage Allied air attacks as "inhuman, illegal and totally contrary to the Geneva Convention." Three Scuds and one Patriot missile hit Ramat Gan in Israel, injuring 96 people; three elderly people died of heart attacks.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Spain (PROMUSICAE): Jesus to a Child--George Michael (2nd week at #1)

#1 single in Norway (VG-lista): Spaceman--Babylon Zoo

#1 single in Germany (Media Control): Gangsta's Paradise--Coolio featuring L.V. (7th week at #1)

Canada's Top 10 (RPM)
1 One Sweet Day--Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men
2 Exhale (Shoop Shoop)--Whitney Houston
3 You'll See--Madonna
4 Name--Goo Goo Dolls
5 Breakfast at Tiffany's--Deep Blue Something
6 Hand in My Pocket--Alanis Morissette
7 Free as a Bird--The Beatles
8 When Love and Hate Collide--Def Leppard
9 Good Mother--Jann Arden
10 Good Intentions--Toad the Wet Sprocket

Singles entering the chart were 1979 by Smashing Pumpkins (#86); So Far Away by Rod Stewart (#91); Birmingham by Amanda Marshall (#93); (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman by Celine Dion (#94); Diggin' on You by TLC (#95); Caught a Lite Sneeze by Tori Amos (#96); Promises Broken by Soul Asylum (#99); and Anywhere Is by Enya (#100).

Politics and government
Kostas Simitas took office as Prime Minister of Greece, six days after Andreas Papandreou had announced his resignation because of ill health.

Molson Inc. announced the sale of its money-losing chemical unit, Diversity Corp., to Unilever for $780 million in Canada's largest brewery undoing diversification.

20 years ago

Died on this date
Tommie Agee, 58
. U.S. baseball player. Mr. Agee was a center fielder with the Cleveland Indians (1962-1964); Chicago White Sox (1965-1967); New York Mets (1968-1972); Houston Astros (1973); and St. Louis Cardinals (1973), batting .255 with 130 home runs and 433 runs batted in in 1,130 games. He was called up briefly to the major leagues in each of his first four seasons, and was still officially a rookie when he made the White Sox roster in 1966 and batted .273 with 22 home runs and 86 runs batted in, earning a Gold Glove for his play in center field and winning recognition as American League Rookie of the Year in his fifth major league season. After poor seasons in 1967 and 1968, Mr. Agee batted .271 with 26 home runs and 76 runs batted in as he helped the Mets win the World Series over the Baltimore Orioles. He was best remembered for his play in the third game of the Series, leading off the bottom of the 1st inning with a home run and making two spectacular catches to prevent a potential total of 5 runs from scoring as the Mets won 5-0 to take a 2-1 lead in games, eventually winning 4 games to 1. Mr. Agee won another Gold Glove in 1970, but knee injuries and weight problems shortened his career. He played with the Los Angeles Dodgers in spring training in 1974, but failed to make the team. Mr. Agee remained active in Mets' alumni affairs in later years; he died of a heart attack after leaving an office building in downtown Manhattan. Oddly, Curt Blefary, Mr. Agee's immediate predecessor as AL Rookie of the Year, died just six days later.

U.S. President George W. Bush issued an executive order barring federal funds for international agencies that performed abortions or counselled women to get abortions.

Norwegian government officials announced the resumption of the export of whale products, seeking to find a market for 500 tons of blubber in storage, and angering conservationists opposed to commercial whaling.

The British government launched a campaign to convince the public that the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine was safe, in the face of rumours that the vaccine could trigger autism.

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