On This Day
"We spend the first twelve months of our children's lives teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve years telling them to sit down and shut up."
-- Phyllis Diller [1917-2012]
Suez Canal Anniversary
In 1869, the Suez Canal was formally opened with great pomp and circumstance. Egypt was host to 6,000 foreign guests. When the canal was declared open, a display of fireworks was ignited on each bank and a squadron of yachts passed through the canal, the first one bearing the Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria-Hungary, the Empress Eugénie of France, and the khedive of Egypt.
Happy Birthday ......
In 1887, Field Marshal Viscount Montgomery, British military leader who defeated Rommel at El Alamein in World War II, born.
In 1925, actor Rock Hudson born. Noted for films like "Ice Station Zebra" and "Pillow Talk" and series made for television including "McMillan and Wife."
In 1930, Olympian-turned-politician Bob Mathias.
In 1938, Singer Gordon Lightfoot.
In 1942, Director and filmmaker Martin Scorsese who opted out on the priesthood to enroll in New York University’s film school. By the time he was finished filming his first 9-minute short piece, What’s a Nice Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This?, Scorsese knew he was destined to be a director. By 1969, Scorsese had completed his first feature-length production, Who’s That Knocking at My Door?, and he later earned the praise of the critics for the 1973 drama Mean Streets. Scorsese quickly emerged as one of the most prominent directors in the industry, and over the years he has created a body of work that ranges from the commercial to the controversial. Some of his most critically acclaimed films include Taxi Driver (1976), New York, New York (1977), The Last Temptation of Christ (1988), Goodfellas (1990), Cape Fear (1991), The Age of Innocence in 1993 and Gangs of New York in 2002. More recently, Scorsese lent his voice to a character in the film Shark Tale (2004).
In 1944, Actress Lauren Hutton, supermodel-turned-actress who began her illustrious career as a Playboy Bunny. Hutton quickly became one of the most sought-after fashion models in the business, and while she was advised to correct the gap between her front teeth, her imperfection added to her on-screen personality. [Perhaps this same imperfection adds to the Old Kunnel's off-screen personality. (grin)] After making her feature debut in Paper Lion (1968), Hutton went on to make memorable appearances in The Gambler (1974), American Gigolo (1980), Once Bitten (1985), Monte Carlo (1986), Perfect People (1988), Fear (1990) and My Father, The Hero in 1994. In recent years, Hutton has returned to modeling and she continues to enjoy her cover girl status.
Danny DeVito, actor and director who earned both a Golden Globe and an Emmy Award for his work on the popular sitcom “Taxi.” DeVito did not begin his career studying acting, but instead focused on beauty at the Wilfred academy of Hair and Beauty Culture. Abandoning his job as a hair dresser, DeVito landed a role in the 1975 film One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. After his award-winning run on “Taxi,” DeVito returned to the silver screen to star in Ruthless People (1986), Twins (1988), Batman Returns (1992), Junior (1994), Renaissance Man (1994), Get Shorty (1995), Man on the Moon (1999) and Drowning Mona in 2000. More recently, DeVito appeared in Death to Smoochy (2002) and Big Fish in 2003.
Baseball hall-of-famer Tom Seaver.
In 1958, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, actress who recently appeared in the blockbuster smash The Perfect Storm with George Clooney and Mark Wahlberg. After spending her teens singing in Opryland’s theme park, Mastrantonio appeared on the Hollywood scene in Scarface (1983). Throughout the 1980s, Mastrantonio performed with the New York Shakespeare Festival and she garnered an Oscar nomination for her work in the Martin Scorsese film The Color of Money (1986). Some of her most memorable performances can be seen in the films Robin Hood (1991), Consenting Adults (1992), Three Wishes (1995), My Life So Far (1999) and Standing Room Only in 2002.
On this day...
In 1558, England's Elizabethan Age begins when Queen Mary I (also known as "Bloody Mary") dies and is succeeded by her 25-year-old half-sister. The 45-year reign of Elizabeth, who would become known as the virgin queen, witnesses the rise of England as a global military power and an intellectual flowering that includes the likes of playwright William Shakespeare.
In 1785, First Church of England, King's Chapel in Boston ordains first minister James Freeman.
In 1797, first clock patent in America granted to Eli Terry of Connecticut for the equation clock.
In 1800, Congress convened for its first time in a Washington, D.C., session.
In 1825, Longfellow's first poem "The Battle of Lovell's Pond" first published in Portland Maine Gazette.
In 1851, Bald eagle appears on U.S. postage stamps for the first time.
In 1855, Scottish explorer David Livingstone discovered Victoria Falls in Africa.
In 1863, [Civil War] Siege of Knoxville, Tennessee, begins
Confederate General James Longstreet places the city of Knoxville, Tennessee, under siege. After two weeks and one failed attack, he abandoned the siege and rejoined General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia.
The Knoxville campaign began in November when Longstreet took 17,000 troops from Chattanooga and moved to secure eastern Tennessee for the Confederates. Longstreet’s corps was normally part of Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia, but after the Battle of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania,in July 1863, Longstreet took two of his divisions to shore up the Confederate effort in the West. He and his troops participated in the victory at Chickamauga in September and the siege of Chattanooga in October and November. Longstreet quarreled with Braxton Bragg, the Confederate commander in the West, andwas given independent command of the Department of East Tennessee. Longstreet took histroops and moved toward Knoxville. Facing him was General Ambrose Burnside and 5,000 Yankees. Burnside fought a delaying action at Campbell Stationon November 16 before retreating into the Knoxville defenses. The next day, Longstreet pulled into position around the north side of the city, but could not cut off supplies to the Union troops. Longstreet waited for reinforcements to arrive, which they did on November 28. He attacked, but was repulsed with heavy loses. Longstreet continued the siege in order to draw troops away from Chattanooga. The ruse worked, and 25,000 Union troops were dispatched from Chattanooga to chase Longstreet’s force away.
Ultimately, Longstreet retreated back to Virginia. His Knoxville campaign was disappointing for the Confederates, who had hoped to secure eastern Tennessee. Longstreet rejoined Lee in the spring after his disappointing turn as head of an independent command.
In 1869, the Suez Canal opened in Egypt, linking the Mediterranean and the Red seas.
In 1881, Samuel Gompers organized the forerunner of the American Federation of Labor.
In 1911, the African–American fraternity Omega Psi Phi was founded at Howard University in Washington, D.C.
In 1913, Dr. Alfred C. Fones inaugurated a course for dental hygenists in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Thirty-three young women enrolled.
In 1917, Auguste Rodin, French sculptor of "The Thinker" and "The Kiss," died.
World At War
World War II, which had begun in Europe on September 1, 1939, with the invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany, ended six years later to the day, September 1, 1945. The final concluding ceremony came the following day, September 2, 1945, with the signing of surrender papers by representatives of Japan, Nazi Germany's Axis partner in the Far East.
Nine Notable Veterans of World War II
THE GREAT BATTLES OF WORLD WAR IIIn 1941, U.S.S.R.: Soviets make gains in severe cold proving fatal to German troops.
Washington: Japanese Ambassador Nomura begins talks with State Department.
In 1942, France: Pierre Laval given full powers by Petain; Admiral Darlan is dismissed.
In 1943, on Bougainville the Japanese continued to hold their strong point at Helzapoppin Ridge above Torokina Point during November, while the Seabees constructed an airfield. By the time the major thrust of the Japanese reached Empress Augusta Bay, the airfield was ocmpleted and the marines and infantry had consolidated their hold on the beachhead. Japanese forces remained on Bougainville until the end of the war, but their strength was neutralized. the Island was an important part of the Allies' Pacific strategy. Using the airfield, fighter planes were within range of the major Japanese base at Rabaul on New Britain.
[National Archives and Records Administration]
In 1959, synthetic diamonds produced for the first time.
In 1962, Washington's Dulles International Airport was dedicated by President Kennedy. [The Ol'Kunnel calls it, "Dooley's Landing Strip."]
In 1967, Operation Eagle Thrust, the largest and longest airlift of troops and cargo from the US to Southeast Asia, begins by C-141 and C-133 aircraft. Operation Eagle Thrust was concluded December 29, 1967.
In 1968, NBC cut away from the final minutes of a New York Jets-Oakland Raiders game to begin a TV special, "Heidi," on schedule reckoning the Jets had the game. The Raiders came from behind to beat the Jets 43-32.
In 1969, strategic arms limitation talks, also known as SALT, began between the United States and the Soviet Union in Helsinki, Finland.
In 1970, the Soviet Union landed an unmanned, remote-controlled vehicle on the moon, the Lunokhod One.
In 1972, Argentine ex-president Juan Peron arrived in Buenos Aires after 17 years of exile.
In 1973, President Nixon told Associated Press managing editors who were meeting in Orlando, Florida, "People have got to know whether or not their president is a cook. Well, I'm not a crook."
In 1975, No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "That's the Way (I Like It)," KC & the Sunshine Band.
In 1979, Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini ordered the release of 13 female and African American hostages being held at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran.
In 1986, Court hearings began in Australia on Britain's attempt to stop former spy Peter Wright publishing his memoirs.
In 1989, tens of thousands of people marched through Prague demanding an end to communist rule in Czechoslovakia but riot police and army paratroopers crushed the protest.
In 1990, President Bush, on the first visit to Czechoslovakia by a U.S. president, told a cheering crowd of 100,000 in Prague that "America will stand with you" through hard times ahead.
In 1992, an appeals court in Washington ruled the Watergate tapes and Nixon presidential papers rightfully belonged to the disgraced president when he left office in 1974.
In 1993, Judges from 11 nations were sworn in at the inaugural session of the U.N. Yugoslavia war crimes tribunal - the first such forum since the Nuremberg and Tokyo trials judged World War Two criminals.
The U.S. House of Representatives passed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
In 1996, debris from a failed Russian Mars probe fell into the sea.
In 1997, Al-Gama'atal-Islamiyya (IG) gunmen shot and killed 58 tourists and four Egyptians and wounded 26 others at the Hatshepsut Temple in the Valley of the Kings near Luxor.
In 1998, former SS captain Erich Priebke was imprisoned the day after Italy's highest court rejected his last-ditch appeal against a life sentence.
Retailers in the U.S. are hit with a wave of superstar releases on what the industry dubs "Super Tuesday." Among the sets released are Garth Brooks' "Garth Brooks: Double Live," Whitney Houston's "My Love is Your Love," Mariah Carey's "#1's," Jewel's "Spirit," and three soundtracks associated with the animated film "The Prince of Egypt."
In 2001, Toys "R" Us Times Square - The Center of the Toy Universe opened in New York City.
In 2003, ex-soldier John Muhammad is found guilty of one of a series of sniper shootings that terrorized the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area and dominated national headlines in October 2002. Police charged that Muhammad and his 17-year-old accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, killed 10 people and wounded three others during a three-week killing spree. After just over six hours of deliberation, a jury convicted Muhammad of the October 9, 2002, shooting of Dean Meyers while he pumped gas at a Sunoco station in Manassas, Virginia.
The actor and former bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger is sworn in as the 38th governor of California at the State Capitol in Sacramento. Schwarzenegger, who became a major Hollywood star in the 1980s with such action movies as “Conan the Barbarian” and “The Terminator”, defeated Governor Gray Davis in a special recall election on October 7, 2003. Prior to Schwarzenegger, another famous actor, Ronald Reagan, served as the 33rd governor of California from 1967 to 1975 before going on to become the nation’s 40th president in 1980.
In 2004, President Vladimir Putin announced Russia was developing a new missile system.
Pakistani authorities announced an Islamic militant wanted in connection with the killing of U.S. journalist Daniel Pearl had been killed in a shootout with police.
In 2005, President Bush took a hardline stance against North Korea, saying the U.S. won't help the communist nation build a civilian nuclear reactor to produce electricity until it dismantles its nuclear weapons programs. With the nuclear dispute with North Korea at an apparent impasse, Bush and South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun put the communist regime on notice that it would not be allowed to keep its nuclear weapons programs.
In 2015, Headline: Call to Arms in France Amid Hunt for Belgian Suspect in Paris Attacks
PARIS — President François Hollande of France called for constitutional amendments to fight potential terrorists at home and for an aggressive effort to “eradicate” the Islamic State abroad.
QUOTATION OF THE DAY
"Terrorism will not destroy the republic, because it is the republic that will destroy it."
FRANÇOIS HOLLANDE, president of France, in an address to Parliament.
New York Times, November 17, 2015
Thought for the day...
[This is the 11/17/2017 bulletin.]
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