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PostPosted: 25 Jul 2017, 09:42 
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In a macabre instance of rough frontier justice, California Rangers claim a $6,000 award by bringing in the severed head—preserved in whiskey—of outlaw Joaquin Murrieta.

In the early months of 1853, a wild band of desperadoes began terrorizing Calaveras County in central California. Law officers believed a shadowy character named Joaquin Murrieta led the outlaws, although confusion abounded since there were at least four other desperadoes named “Joaquin” in the territory.

Whatever the identity of the leader, the California legislature resolved to stop the outlaws. In the spring of 1853, the government created a special force of California Rangers led by a Los Angeles Deputy Sheriff named Harry Love. The state also offered a $6,000 award to anyone who brought in Murrieta—dead or alive. For several weeks, Love and his team of 20 rangers scoured the Calaveras countryside without success. The rangers got a lucky break, however, when they captured Murrieta’s brother-in-law and forced him to lead them to the outlaw’s camp on Cantua Creek.

Early on the morning of this day in 1853, Love and his rangers attacked the outlaw camp. Caught by surprise and badly outnumbered, eight of the bandits were killed, including Murrieta and his right hand man, Tres Dedos (also known as Three Fingered Jack). To prove they had indeed killed Murrieta and deserved their award, the rangers cut off the head of the outlaw. They also took the distinctive hand that gave Three Fingered Jack his nickname. The rangers preserved the gory body parts in whiskey-filled vats until they could exhibit them to the authorities in Stockton.

Later, some claimed that the severed head was not Murrieta’s. Love, however, gathered 17 affidavits from people who had known the outlaw and were willing to swear it was Murrieta’s head. The state agreed and gave the $6,000 award to Love and his rangers. Love further profited from the deal by taking Murrieta’s head on a tour of California mining camps, charging $1 to see it. Eventually, the head ended up in San Francisco Museum, where it was destroyed in the great earthquake of 1906.


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PostPosted: 26 Jul 2017, 09:59 
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On this day in 1775, the U.S. postal system is established by the Second Continental Congress, with Benjamin Franklin as its first postmaster general. Franklin (1706-1790) put in place the foundation for many aspects of today’s mail system. During early colonial times in the 1600s, few American colonists needed to send mail to each other; it was more likely that their correspondence was with letter writers in Britain. Mail deliveries from across the Atlantic were sporadic and could take many months to arrive. There were no post offices in the colonies, so mail was typically left at inns and taverns. In 1753, Benjamin Franklin, who had been postmaster of Philadelphia, became one of two joint postmasters general for the colonies. He made numerous improvements to the mail system, including setting up new, more efficient colonial routes and cutting delivery time in half between Philadelphia and New York by having the weekly mail wagon travel both day and night via relay teams. Franklin also debuted the first rate chart, which standardized delivery costs based on distance and weight. In 1774, the British fired Franklin from his postmaster job because of his revolutionary activities. However, the following year, he was appointed postmaster general of the United Colonies by the Continental Congress. Franklin held the job until late in 1776, when he was sent to France as a diplomat. He left a vastly improved mail system, with routes from Florida to Maine and regular service between the colonies and Britain. President George Washington appointed Samuel Osgood, a former Massachusetts congressman, as the first postmaster general of the American nation under the new U.S. constitution in 1789. At the time, there were approximately 75 post offices in the country.

Today, the United States has over 40,000 post offices and the postal service delivers 212 billion pieces of mail each year to over 144 million homes and businesses in the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam, the American Virgin Islands and American Samoa. The postal service is the nation’s largest civilian employer, with over 700,000 career workers, who handle more than 44 percent of the world’s cards and letters. The postal service is a not-for-profit, self-supporting agency that covers its expenses through postage (stamp use in the United States started in 1847) and related products. The postal service gets the mail delivered, rain or shine, using everything from planes to mules. However, it’s not cheap: The U.S. Postal Service says that when fuel costs go up by just one penny, its own costs rise by $8 million.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 26 Jul 2017, 17:11 
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That is really interesting Rem. We may rip on the postal service from time to time but overall I think they do a really good job.

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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 26 Jul 2017, 21:03 
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trapperrick wrote:
That is really interesting Rem. We may rip on the postal service from time to time but overall I think they do a really good job.


As compared to no postal service ? Sorry Rick but gotta disagree . Used to send mail and all local mail was sorted and put into the boxes right in town. Now, ALL mail goes to Virginia or somewhere and 2 weeks later ends back up in town. Just like everything else............ anything the government has a hand in is a snafu. :evil:

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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 26 Jul 2017, 23:14 
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doc9013 wrote:
trapperrick wrote:
That is really interesting Rem. We may rip on the postal service from time to time but overall I think they do a really good job.


As compared to no postal service ? Sorry Rick but gotta disagree . Used to send mail and all local mail was sorted and put into the boxes right in town. Now, ALL mail goes to Virginia or somewhere and 2 weeks later ends back up in town. Just like everything else............ anything the government has a hand in is a snafu. :evil:


Yeah Rick, I understand your point but I have to agree with doc on the Postal System. Our Post Office was a terminal point for years then a few years back they moved our hub to Houston and now it sometimes takes 5-7 days to get mail that is mailed here in town. It is sent a 100 miles to Houston to be sorted and redirected back up to here.

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PostPosted: 27 Jul 2017, 10:09 
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On this day in 2003, the legendary actor-comedian Bob Hope dies at age 100 in Toluca Lake, California. Known for entertaining American servicemen and women for more than five decades, Hope had a career that spanned the whole range of 20th century entertainment, from vaudeville to Broadway musicals to radio, television and movies.

He was born Leslie Townes Hope, the fifth of seven sons, on May 29, 1903, in Eltham, England. In 1907, Hope’s family moved to Cleveland, Ohio. As a young man, he began his entertainment career as a dancer and vaudeville performer. During the 1930s, he appeared in Broadway musicals, along with such performers as Fanny Brice and Ethel Merman. In 1934, Hope wed the nightclub singer Dolores Reade; the marriage would endure until his death. In 1938, Hope, who became known for his snappy one-liners, rose to national fame with his own radio show on NBC and his first feature film, The Big Broadcast of 1938.

In 1940, Hope co-starred in the box-office hit Road to Singapore with Bing Crosby. The film, about a pair of singing, wisecracking con men, was the first of seven “Road” movies the pair would make. Hope appeared in more than 50 feature films during his career. He hosted the Academy Awards 18 times, although he never won an Oscar himself, an occurrence he turned into a long-running joke. However, he did receive five special awards from the Academy, including two honorary Oscars. Hope was also a top entertainer on TV and from 1959 to 1996 he made 284 “Bob Hope specials” for NBC.

Starting with World War II, Hope began entertaining American troops at military bases around the world. His USO tours traveled to military bases during times of war (Vietnam, the Persian Gulf), as well as times of peace. He was so beloved for his work with the military for more than half a century that Congress passed a resolution in 1997 making Hope an honorary veteran. It was one of the countless honors that Hope received throughout his career. In 1998, he was granted honorary knighthood from Queen Elizabeth.


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PostPosted: 28 Jul 2017, 09:42 
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Best known today for his inadvertent role in the death of Sitting Bull, the prominent Indian agent James McLaughlin dies in Washington, D.C.

Unlike some Indian agents of the later 19th century, McLaughlin genuinely liked and respected his charges. His wife was half Sioux, and she taught her husband to speak her native language reasonably well. In 1871, this valuable skill won McLaughlin a position at the Devils Lake Indian Agency in Dakota Territory and he eventually became the chief agent.

At Devils Lake, McLaughlin gained a reputation for fair and sympathetic treatment of Indians. His appreciation for Indians was strictly limited, however. Like most Indian agents of the day, McLaughlin believed that his mission was to “civilize” the Indians by forcing them to adopt white ways. McLaughlin viewed traditional Indian practices like the Sun Dance and buffalo hunting as obstacles to the inevitable assimilation of the Native Americans into white society. Thus, while he worked hard to improve Indian living conditions, he simultaneously tried to stamp out their culture by promoting the use of English and the adoption of sedentary farming.

In 1881, McLaughlin was transferred to the larger Sioux reservation at Standing Rock, South Dakota. Two years later, the great Sioux Chief Sitting Bull was assigned to the reservation. McLaughlin worried about Sitting Bull. The chief was infamous for his role in the defeat of Custer’s 7th Cavalry at the Battle of the Little Big Horn in 1876. He was also among the last of the Sioux to accept confinement to a reservation, and his disdain for white ways was well known.

For several years, McLaughlin and Sitting Bull enjoyed a strained but peaceful relationship. In 1890, however, a popular religious movement known as the Ghost Dance swept through the Standing Rock reservation. The Ghost Dancers believed that an apocalyptic day was approaching when all whites would be wiped out, the buffalo would return, and the Indians could return to their traditional ways.

McLaughlin wrongly suspected that Sitting Bull was a leader of the Ghost Dance movement. In December 1890, he ordered the arrest of the old chief, believing this might calm the tense situation on the reservation. Unfortunately, during the arrest, a fight broke out and McLaughlin’s policemen killed Sitting Bull. The murder only exacerbated the climate of fear and mistrust, which contributed to the tragic massacre of 146 Indians by U.S. soldiers at Wounded Knee later that month.

In 1895, McLaughlin moved to Washington, D.C., where he became an inspector for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. He eventually became familiar with Indians all around the nation, leading him to write a 1910 memoir entitled, My Friend the Indian. He died in Washington in 1923 at the age of 81 and was buried at the South Dakota reservation town that bears his name.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 29 Jul 2017, 10:12 
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1776
Escalante and Dominguez begin expedition

Silvestre de Escalante and Francisco Dominguez, two Spanish Franciscan priests, leave Santa Fe for an epic journey through the Southwest.

Escalante and Dominguez hoped to blaze a trail from New Mexico to Monterey, California, but their main goal was to visit with the native inhabitants and convert as many as possible to the Catholic faith. On this day in 1776, the two priests and seven men left the Spanish frontier town of Santa Fe and headed northwest into what is today the state of Colorado. They continued north, exploring the rugged Great Basin and canyon land country of Utah.

Initially, the priests made good time, and by mid-September, they had reached Utah Lake, just to the south of the Great Salt Lake in northern Utah. There, they found Indians who Dominguez described as “the most docile and affable nation of all that have been known in these regions.” They quickly set about preaching the Gospel, reportedly with “such happy results that they are awaiting Spaniards so that they might become Christians.”

By early October, winter was approaching. Traveling through high mountain passes, Escalante and Dominguez began to encounter fierce snowstorms. Accustomed to desert living, the priests were unequipped to deal with snow and bitter cold, and they soon ran short of provisions. They abandoned the goal of reaching California and headed back for Santa Fe. During the long journey home, they very nearly starved to death. The men ate their horses first. When the horseflesh was gone, they ate only prickly pear cactus.

On January 2, 1777, the exhausted men staggered into Santa Fe. They had traveled nearly 1,700 miles in just 159 days through some of the roughest country in the southwest, yet all nine members of the party made it home safely. Escalante and Dominguez had failed in their goal of finding a route to Monterey, and to their keen disappointment, the New Mexican missionaries showed little interest in following up their initial proselytizing with the Utah Indians.

Nonetheless, the two intrepid priests were the first to explore extensively the Great Basin country of the Southwest. Escalante’s written account of the expedition became an essential guide to future explorers.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 29 Jul 2017, 12:41 
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Also on July 29th.

A fire on a United States Navy carrier stationed off the coast of Vietnam kills 134 service members on this day in 1967. The deadly fire on the USS Forrestal began with the accidental launch of a rocket.
During the Vietnam War, the USS Forrestal was often stationed off the coast of North Vietnam, conducting combat operations. On the morning of July 29, the ship was preparing to attack when a rocket from one of its own F-4 Phantom jet fighters was accidentally launched. The rocket streaked across the deck and hit a parked A-4 Skyhawk jet. The Skyhawk, which was waiting to take off, was piloted by John McCain, the future senator from Arizona.
Fuel from the Skyhawk spilled out and caught fire. The fire then spread to nearby planes on the ship’s deck and detonated a 1,000-pound bomb, which killed many of the initial firefighters and further spread the fire. A chain reaction of explosions blew holes in the flight deck and had half the large ship on fire at one point. Many pilots were trapped in their planes as the fire spread. It took a full day before the fires could be fully contained.
Hundreds of sailors were seriously injured and 134 lost their lives in the devastating fire. Twenty planes were destroyed. It was the worst loss of a life on a U.S. Navy ship since World War II. Temporary repairs were made to the ship in the Philippines before the Forrestal headed back to Norfolk, Virginia. It was repaired and put back into service the following April, but never returned to Vietnam.
John McCain narrowly escaped the fire and, afterwards, volunteered for duty on the USS Oriskany. Just three months later, his plane was shot down over North Vietnam and he was taken prisoner. He was not released until five-and-a-half years later, in 1973.

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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 29 Jul 2017, 14:44 
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The one thing that pi$$ed me off about Trump during the campaign was he ridiculed McCain for being captured. :evil:

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PostPosted: 30 Jul 2017, 09:51 
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On this day in 1945, the USS Indianapolis is torpedoed by a Japanese submarine and sinks within minutes in shark-infested waters. Only 317 of the 1,196 men on board survived. However, the Indianapolis had already completed its major mission: the delivery of key components of the atomic bomb that would be dropped a week later at Hiroshima to Tinian Island in the South Pacific.

The Indianapolis made its delivery to Tinian Island on July 26, 1945. The mission was top secret and the ship’s crew was unaware of its cargo. After leaving Tinian, the Indianapolis sailed to the U.S. military’s Pacific headquarters at Guam and was given orders to meet the battleship USS Idaho at Leyte Gulf in the Philippines to prepare for the invasion of Japan.

Shortly after midnight on July 30, halfway between Guam and Leyte Gulf, a Japanese sub blasted the Indianapolis, sparking an explosion that split the ship and caused it to sink in approximately 12 minutes, with about 300 men trapped inside. Another 900 went into the water, where many died from drowning, shark attacks, dehydration or injuries from the explosion. Help did not arrive until four days later, on August 2, when an anti-submarine plane on routine patrol happened upon the men and radioed for assistance.

On August 6, 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, inflicting nearly 130,000 casualties and destroying more than 60 percent of the city. On August 9, a second atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, where casualties were estimated at over 66,000. Meanwhile, the U.S. government kept quiet about the Indianapolis tragedy until August 15 in order to guarantee that the news would be overshadowed by President Harry Truman’s announcement that Japan had surrendered.

In the aftermath of the events involving the Indianapolis, the ship’s commander, Captain Charles McVay, was court-martialed in November 1945 for failing to sail a zigzag course that would have helped the ship to evade enemy submarines in the area. McVay, the only Navy captain court-martialed for losing a ship during the war, committed suicide in 1968. Many of his surviving crewmen believed the military had made him a scapegoat. In 2000, 55 years after the Indianapolis went down, Congress cleared McVay’s name.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 30 Jul 2017, 10:49 
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a horrible chapter in our nations history..that had to be a hard 4 days in the water..

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PostPosted: 31 Jul 2017, 09:54 
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On July 31, 1975, James Riddle Hoffa, one of the most influential American labor leaders of the 20th century, disappears in Detroit, Michigan, never to be heard from again. Though he is popularly believed to have been the victim of a Mafia hit, conclusive evidence was never found, and Hoffa’s death remains shrouded in mystery to this day.

Born in 1913 to a poor coal miner in Brazil, Indiana, Jimmy Hoffa proved a natural leader in his youth. At the age of 20, he helped organize a labor strike in Detroit, and remained an advocate for downtrodden workers for the rest of his life. Hoffa’s charisma and talents as a local organizer quickly got him noticed by the Teamsters and carried him upward through its ranks. Then a small but rapidly growing union, the Teamsters organized truckers across the country, and through the use of strikes, boycotts and some more powerful though less legal methods of protest, won contract demands on behalf of workers.

Hoffa became president of the Teamsters in 1957, when its former leader was imprisoned for bribery. As chief, Hoffa was lauded for his tireless work to expand the union, and for his unflagging devotion to even the organization’s least powerful members. His caring and approachability were captured in one of the more well-known quotes attributed to him: “You got a problem? Call me. Just pick up the phone.”

Hoffa’s dedication to the worker and his electrifying public speeches made him wildly popular, both among his fellow workers and the politicians and businessmen with whom he negotiated. Yet, for all the battles he fought and won on behalf of American drivers, he also had a dark side. In Hoffa’s time, many Teamster leaders partnered with the Mafia in racketeering, extortion and embezzlement. Hoffa himself had relationships with high-ranking mobsters, and was the target of several government investigations throughout the 1960s. In 1967, he was convicted of bribery and sentenced to 13 years in prison.

While in jail, Hoffa never ceded his office, and when Richard Nixon commuted his sentence in 1971, he was poised to make a comeback. Released on condition of not participating in union activities for 10 years, Hoffa was planning to fight the restriction in court when he disappeared on July 31, 1975, from the parking lot of a restaurant in Detroit, not far from where he got his start as a labor organizer. Several conspiracy theories have been floated about Hoffa’s disappearance and the location of his remains, but the truth remains unknown.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 31 Jul 2017, 20:07 
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Heard somewhere he's in the concrete in Giants Stadium.

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PostPosted: 01 Aug 2017, 09:46 
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The war to end all wars...............

On August 1, 1914, four days after Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia, two more great European powers—Russia and Germany—declare war on each other; the same day, France orders a general mobilization. The so-called “Great War” that ensued would be one of unprecedented destruction and loss of life, resulting in the deaths of some 20 million soldiers and civilians and the physical devastation of much of the European continent.

The event that was widely acknowledged to have sparked the outbreak of World War I occurred on June 28, 1914, when Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, was shot to death with his wife by the Bosnian Serb nationalist Gavrilo Princip in Sarajevo. Over the weeks that followed, Austria-Hungary blamed the Serbian government for the attack, hoping to use the incident as justification for settling the problem of Slavic nationalism in the tumultuous Balkans region once and for all. However, as Russia supported Serbia, an Austria-Hungary declaration of war was delayed until its leaders received assurances from German leader Kaiser Wilhelm II that Germany would support their cause in the event of a Russian intervention. This assurance came on July 5; Austria-Hungary subsequently sent an ultimatum to the Serbian government on July 23 and demanded its acceptance within two days at the risk of war. Though Serbia accepted all but two of the ultimatum’s terms, and Russia declared its intention to back Serbia in the case of such a conflict, Austria-Hungary went ahead with its war declaration against Serbia on July 28, one month after the assassinations.

With that declaration, the tenuous peace between Europe’s great powers was shattered: Germany warned Russia, still only partially mobilized, that to continue to full mobilization against Austria-Hungary would mean war with Germany. While insisting that Russia immediately halt mobilization, Germany began its own mobilization; when the Russians refused the German demands, Germany declared war on the czarist empire on August 1. That same day, Russia’s ally, France, long suspicious of German aggression, began its own mobilization, urging Great Britain—the third member, along with France and Russia, of the Triple Entente alliance—to declare its support. A divided British government declined to do so initially, but events soon precipitated Britain’s move towards war as well. On August 2, the first German army units crossed into Luxembourg as part of a long-planned German strategy to invade France through neutral Belgium. France and Germany declared war against each other on August 3; that night, Germany invaded Belgium, prompting Great Britain to declare war on Germany.

For the most part, the people of Europe greeted the outbreak of war with jubilation. The great majority of people—within government and without—assumed that their country would be victorious within months, and could not envision the possibility of a longer conflict. By the end of 1914, however, well over a million soldiers of various nationalities had been killed on the battlefields of Europe, and there was no final victory in sight for either the Allies or the Central Powers. On the Western Front—the battle line that stretched across northern France and Belgium—the combatants settled down in the trenches for a terrible war of attrition, which would continue, in Europe and other corners of the world, for the next four years.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 01 Aug 2017, 18:53 
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On this day in 1992, my dad died in a car wreck. Rest in peace dad. See you heaven.

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PostPosted: 02 Aug 2017, 10:45 
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“Wild Bill” Hickok, one of the greatest gunfighters of the American West, is murdered in Deadwood, South Dakota.

Born in Illinois in 1837, James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok first gained notoriety as a gunfighter in 1861 when he coolly shot three men who were trying to kill him. A highly sensationalized account of the gunfight appeared six years later in the popular periodical Harper’s New Monthly Magazine, sparking Hickok’s rise to national fame. Other articles and books followed, and though his prowess was often exaggerated, Hickok did earn his reputation with a string of impressive gunfights.

After accidentally killing his deputy during an 1871 shootout in Abilene, Texas, Hickok never fought another gun battle. For the next several years he lived off his famous reputation, appearing as himself in Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West show. Occasionally, he worked as guide for wealthy hunters. His renowned eyesight began to fail, and for a time he was reduced to wandering the West trying to make a living as a gambler. Several times he was arrested for vagrancy.

In the spring of 1876, Hickok arrived in the Black Hills mining town of Deadwood, South Dakota. There he became a regular at the poker tables of the No. 10 Saloon, eking out a meager existence as a card player. On this day in 1876, Hickok was playing cards with his back to the saloon door. At 4:15 in the afternoon, a young gunslinger named Jack McCall walked into the saloon, approached Hickok from behind, and shot him in the back of the head. Hickok died immediately. McCall tried to shoot others in the crowd, but amazingly, all of the remaining cartridges in his pistol were duds. McCall was later tried, convicted, and hanged.

Hickok was only 39 years old when he died. The most famous gunfighter in the history of the West died with his Smith & Wesson revolver in his holster, never having seen his murderer. According to legend, Hickok held a pair of black aces and black eights when he died, a combination that has since been known as the Dead Man’s Hand.


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PostPosted: 03 Aug 2017, 09:02 
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1846
Donner party encounters first delay.

An ominous sign of the troubles to come, the Donner party finds a note warning the emigrants that their expected route through the mountains ahead is nearly impassable.

The Donner party had left Springfield, Illinois, three months earlier. Led by two wealthy brothers, Jacob and George Donner, the emigrants initially followed the regular California Trail westward to Fort Bridger, Wyoming. From there, however, the emigrants decided to leave the established trail and take a new and supposedly shorter route to California laid out by a unscrupulous trail guide named Lansford Hastings. Hastings was not at Fort Bridger at the time-he was leading an earlier wagon train along his new route. He left word for the Donner party to follow, promising that he would mark the trail for them.

Reassured, the group of 89 emigrants left Fort Bridger with their 20 wagons and headed for Weber Canyon, where Hastings claimed there was an easy passage through the rugged Wasatch Mountains. On this day in 1846, they reached the head of the canyon, where they found the note from Hastings attached to a forked stick. Hastings warned the Donner party that the route ahead was more difficult than he had thought. He asked the emigrants to make camp there and wait until he could return to show them a better way.

Hastings’ note troubled the emigrants. To return to Fort Bridger to pick up the established route would have meant wasting several days. They decided to wait for Hastings. After eight days, when Hastings had still not arrived, the emigrants sent a messenger up the canyon to find the guide. The messenger returned several days later with instructions from Hastings to follow another trail, and the emigrants complied. The alternate route, however, turned out to be even worse than the Weber Canyon road, and the emigrants had to carve a fresh road through thick trees and boulder-strewn ground.

The Donner party finally made it through the Wasatch Mountains and arrived at the Great Salt Lake. Hastings’ route had cost them 18 valuable days. Unfortunately, their difficulties were only beginning. The “short cut” to California had cost them many wasted days, and the Donner party crossed the Sierra Nevada Mountains late in the season. On October 28, a heavy snowfall blocked the high mountain passes, trapping the emigrants in a frozen wilderness. Eventually reduced to cannibalism to survive, only 45 of the original 89 emigrants reached California the following year.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 03 Aug 2017, 14:31 
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Hastings.from what ive read was a bonfied con man..

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PostPosted: 04 Aug 2017, 08:58 
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1873
Custer and 7th Cavalry attacked by Indians

While protecting a railroad survey party in Montana, Custer and his 7th Cavalry clash for the first time with the Sioux Indians, who will defeat them three years later at Little Big Horn.

During the previous two years, Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer and his 7th Cavalry had not fought a single battle against the hostile Indians of the western Plains. Hungry for action, Custer was pleased when the 7th Cavalry was ordered to help protect a party of surveyors laying out the route for the proposed Northern Pacific Railroad. The new transcontinental railroad (the third in the United States) was to pass through territory controlled by hostile Sioux Indians. Custer was optimistic that the assignment would give him a chance to improve his reputation as an Indian fighter.

Initially, the military escort saw little action. The hostile Indians seemed to be avoiding or ignoring the survey party. For Custer, the mission turned into something of a lark. He spent much of his time shooting buffalo, antelope, elk, and other animals. To find good hunting, he often led the 7th Cavalry far away from the survey party and the main body of the military escort.

On this day in 1873, Custer was far ahead of the rest of the force, camping along the Tongue River in southeastern Montana. Suddenly, a large band of Sioux warriors appeared on the horizon and attacked. The Indians were led by Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull, but the young braves seemed to have attacked impetuously and with little planning. Custer, who had been taking an afternoon nap, reacted quickly and mounted an effective defense. After a brief skirmish, the Indians withdrew.

Since only one soldier and one Indian were killed in the skirmish, Custer’s short battle along the Tongue River seemed relatively insignificant at the time. However, Custer’s easy escape in his first encounter with Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse may have given him a dangerously scornful view of their fighting abilities. It helped to confirm his belief that the Plains warriors tended to flee rather than fight. As a result, when Custer again encountered Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse at the Little Big Horn River three years later, his greatest fear was that they would withdraw before he could attack, and he rushed in without proper reconnaissance. That time, though, the Indians stood and fought, leaving Custer and more than 200 of his men dead.


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PostPosted: 04 Aug 2017, 09:01 
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1944
Anne Frank and her family arrested by Gestapo

On this day in 1944, a German-born Jewish girl and her family, who had been hiding in German-occupied Holland, are found by the Gestapo and transported to various concentration camps. The young girl’s diary of her time in hiding was found after her death and published. The Diary of Anne Frank remains one of the most moving testimonies to the invincibility of the human spirit in the face of inhuman cruelty.

She was born Annelies Marie Frank, in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, on June 12, 1929. Her father, Otto Frank, a businessman, moved his wife and two daughters to Holland early in the Hitler regime. After the German invasion and occupation of the Netherlands, the Franks were threatened with deportation to a forced-labor camp and so went into hiding. They spend the next two years, from July 9, 1942, until August 4, 1944, in the back of Otto’s food products warehouse, along with four other Jews. Gentile friends and neighbors smuggled in food and other supplies.

Acting on a tip from Dutch informers, the Gestapo (the Nazi secret police), discovered the Franks and arrested them. They then transported them to the Auschwitz concentration camps in Poland in September. Anne and her sister, Margot, were transferred to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in northern Germany a month later. There Anne died of typhus, in March 1945, not long before the camp was liberated by the Allies.

Otto Frank was found, still alive, in Auschwitz by the Russian troops that liberated the camps there (Anne’s mother had died in January). Friends back in Holland who had searched the Franks’ former hiding place found a stash of personal papers; among the collection was Anne’s diary, which described her emotional and intellectual development during the two years spent eluding detection by the Nazis. Otto had it published in 1947 as The Diary of a Young Girl. It has since been translated into more than 50 languages and adapted for stage and screen. The most memorable line remains: “In spite of everything, I still believe people are really good at heart.”

The Franks’ hiding place, on the Prinsengracht Canal in Amsterdam, has been turned into a museum.


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 Post subject: Today in history 8-5
PostPosted: 05 Aug 2017, 08:58 
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1953
Texas Ranger Ira Aten dies

Texas Ranger Ira Aten, one of the last survivors of the days of the Wild West, dies at his home in Burlingame, California. He was 89 years old.

Born in 1862, Aten was among the final generation of Americans who had a chance to come of age on a wilderness frontier. Aten was introduced to the frontier at the age of 13, when his family moved to a farm near the isolated central Texas town of Round Rock. Not long after, he learned about the hard justice of the frontier when his father, a minister, provided the last rites for a mortally wounded outlaw. Aten was determined to survive in a violent world–he honed his skills with a pistol and became a crack shot with a rifle.

At age 20, Aten joined the Texas Rangers, a band of law enforcement officers created during the Texas Revolution of 1835. He had the hazardous job of patrolling the Rio Grande River, where many bands of cattle thieves and other outlaws crossed to hide in Mexico. In May 1884, Aten and six other Rangers spotted two presumed cattle thieves near the Rio Grande. When the Rangers tried to apprehend the men, a gun battle broke out. Several of the Rangers were wounded, one fatally, but Aten was able to injure the two outlaws and take them prisoner.

Promoted to corporal, Aten was reassigned to west central Texas, a region that was no more peaceful. In 1887, Aten confronted an outlaw named Judd Roberts. Aten shot Roberts in the hand, but the outlaw managed to escape. Two months later, Aten again wounded Roberts, but the outlaw again lived to escape. Finally, Aten caught up with Roberts, this time shooting him dead.

In 1889, Aten left the Rangers to become sheriff of Fort Ben County, Texas. During six years as a sheriff, he continued to track down outlaws and fight more than a few gun battles. Aten always came out ahead, but eventually he began to yearn for a safer and more peaceful life. In 1895, he left law enforcement to become the superintendent of the Escarbada Division of the giant XIT Ranch. Nine years later, he finally left the wilds of Texas and settled in California with his wife and five children. He lived the remainder of his long life in relative peace and quiet. He died on this day in 1953, one of the last survivors of a vanished era.

www.texasranger.org/halloffame/Aten_Ira.htm


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 Post subject: Today in history. 8-6
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2017, 10:25 
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On this day in 1945, at 8:16 a.m. Japanese time, an American B-29 bomber, the Enola Gay, drops the world’s first atom bomb, over the city of Hiroshima. Approximately 80,000 people are killed as a direct result of the blast, and another 35,000 are injured. At least another 60,000 would be dead by the end of the year from the effects of the fallout.

U.S. President Harry S. Truman, discouraged by the Japanese response to the Potsdam Conference’s demand for unconditional surrender, made the decision to use the atom bomb to end the war in order to prevent what he predicted would be a much greater loss of life were the United States to invade the Japanese mainland. And so on August 5, while a “conventional” bombing of Japan was underway, “Little Boy,” (the nickname for one of two atom bombs available for use against Japan), was loaded onto Lt. Col. Paul W. Tibbets’ plane on Tinian Island in the Marianas. Tibbets’ B-29, named the Enola Gay after his mother, left the island at 2:45 a.m. on August 6. Five and a half hours later, “Little Boy” was dropped, exploding 1,900 feet over a hospital and unleashing the equivalent of 12,500 tons of TNT. The bomb had several inscriptions scribbled on its shell, one of which read “Greetings to the Emperor from the men of the Indianapolis” (the ship that transported the bomb to the Marianas).

There were 90,000 buildings in Hiroshima before the bomb was dropped; only 28,000 remained after the bombing. Of the city’s 200 doctors before the explosion; only 20 were left alive or capable of working. There were 1,780 nurses before—only 150 remained who were able to tend to the sick and dying.

According to John Hersey’s classic work Hiroshima, the Hiroshima city government had put hundreds of schoolgirls to work clearing fire lanes in the event of incendiary bomb attacks. They were out in the open when the Enola Gay dropped its load.

There were so many spontaneous fires set as a result of the bomb that a crewman of the Enola Gay stopped trying to count them.


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 Post subject: Re: Today in history.
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2017, 11:40 
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a day that changed the world.. "Julius Robert Oppenheimer .who developed the bomb, after seeing the first test was so shaken at what they had created said.....I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds... :(

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 Post subject: Today in history. 8-7
PostPosted: 07 Aug 2017, 06:22 
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1947
Wood raft makes 4,300-mile voyage

On this day in 1947, Kon-Tiki, a balsa wood raft captained by Norwegian anthropologist Thor Heyerdahl, completes a 4,300-mile, 101-day journey from Peru to Raroia in the Tuamotu Archipelago, near Tahiti.Heyerdahl wanted to prove his theory that prehistoric South Americans could have colonized the Polynesian islands by drifting on ocean currents.

Heyerdahl and his five-person crew set sail from Callao, Peru, on the 40-square-foot Kon-Tiki on April 28, 1947. The Kon-Tiki, named for a mythical white chieftain, was made of indigenous materials and designed to resemble rafts of early South American Indians. While crossing the Pacific, the sailors encountered storms, sharks and whales, before finally washing ashore at Raroia. Heyerdahl, born in Larvik, Norway, on October 6, 1914, believed that Polynesia’s earliest inhabitants had come from South America, a theory that conflicted with popular scholarly opinion that the original settlers arrived from Asia. Even after his successful voyage, anthropologists and historians continued to discredit Heyerdahl’s belief. However, his journey captivated the public and he wrote a book about the experience that became an international bestseller and was translated into 65 languages. Heyerdahl also produced a documentary about the trip that won an Academy Award in 1951.

Heyerdahl made his first expedition to Polynesia in 1937. He and his first wife lived primitively on Fatu Hiva in the Marquesas Islands for a year and studied plant and animal life. The experience led him to believe that humans had first come to the islands aboard primitive vessels drifting on ocean currents from the east.

Following the Kon-Tiki expedition, Heyerdahl made archeological trips to such places as the Galapagos Islands, Easter Island and Peru and continued to test his theories about how travel across the seas played a major role in the migration patterns of ancient cultures. In 1970, he sailed across the Atlantic from Morocco to Barbados in a reed boat named Ra II (after Ra, the Egyptian sun god) to prove that Egyptians could have connected with pre-Columbian Americans. In 1977, he sailed the Indian Ocean in a primitive reed ship built in Iraq to learn how prehistoric civilizations in Mesopotamia, the Indus Valley and Egypt might have connected.

While Heyerdahl’s work was never embraced by most scholars, he remained a popular public figure and was voted “Norwegian of the Century” in his homeland. He died at age 87 on April 18, 2002, in Italy. The raft from his famous 1947 expedition is housed at the Kon-Tiki Museum in Oslo, Norway.


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