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, deaths, births, of JUL 20
[For Jul 20 Julian go to  Gregorian date: 1583~1699: Jul 301700s: Jul 311800s: Aug 011900~2099: Aug 02]
On a July 20:
2003 Shahazadi, 29, accompanied by her Swiss husband, returns for the first time on a visit to her native village Mariahun, India, from which, together with her sister Kishwar, she was kidnapped on 06 April 1981, by their maternal uncle. Kishwar was recovered within a week, but Shahazadi could not be found. She made it to a children's home in Kolkata, from where she was adopted by a Swiss couple and taken to Switzerland. Shahazadi's parents came to know about their daughter through an appeal published by her Swiss adoptive parents through the Delhi police. Her biological father, Mohammad Rafi, responded, and a DNA test confirmed that he was the father. Today Shahazadi was recognized all the members of her family and her house, but, now fluent in German, she has forgotten Urdu and wants to relearn it so as to communicate with her parents.
2000 The Mideast summit, resurrected only hours after its reported demise, moved forward with US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright stepping in for President Clinton, who had left for an economic summit in Japan.
2000 A federal grand jury indicted two former Utah Olympic officials for their alleged roles in paying $1 million in cash and gifts to help bring the 2002 games to Salt Lake City.
1998 Microsoft antitrust case narrowed      top
      Attorneys General from 20 states drop some of their antitrust charges against Microsoft, narrowing their focus in the antitrust case. Among charges dropped by the states are accusations of unfair pricing and sales practices related to Microsoft Office. The states' narrower focus make the state suits almost identical to the antitrust suit filed by the Justice Department.
1992 Restrictions eased on encryption software      top
      The Bush administration agrees to ease some of its tight restrictions on exporting encryption software. Previously, the government had prevented the export of almost all encryption systems, on the grounds that terrorists might exploit such software. US software companies fought against restrictions, arguing that they were crippled in foreign markets and losing an estimated three to five billion dollars a year. The slight relaxation of some restrictions, however, did not satisfy many software companies, and the battle between the software industry and the government over encryption continued throughout the decade.
1991 Lebanon joined Syria in agreeing to participate in Mideast peace talks with Israel.
1991 Russian President Boris N. Yeltsin banned political activity in government offices and republic-run businesses, effectively curtailing the influence of the Communist Party.
1990 Justice William Brennan resigns from the Supreme Court after 36 years
1990 Saddam Hussein, presidente (dictador) de Irak, solicita apoyo al mundo árabe contra Kuwait y los Emiratos Árabes Unidos, a los que acusa de saturar de petróleo el mercado.
1989 34ºF, highest overnight low ever recorded in Phoenix Arizona
1988 Michael Dukakis selected US Democratic presidential nominee
1985 Divers find wreck of Spanish galleon Atocha
1985 John Howard of the US establishes the world bicycle speed record: 245.077 km/h (behind a towed windshield).
1982 Bombs planted by Irish Republican Army explode in 2 London parks
1979 En Nicaragua, la Junta Revolucionaria promulga el Estatuto Fundamental de la República, por el que se reconocían y garantizaban las libertades individuales básicas, hasta la elaboración de una nueva Constitución.
1979 44-kg Newfoundland dog pulls 2293-kg load, Bothell, Washington.
1976 Unmanned probe lands on Mars      top
      On the seventh anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing, the Viking 1 lander, an unmanned US planetary probe, became the first spacecraft to successfully land on the surface of Mars. Viking 1 was launched on August 20, 1975, and arrived at Mars on June 19, 1976. The first month of its orbit was devoted to imaging the surface to find appropriate landing sites. On July 20, 1976, the Viking 1 lander separated from the orbiter, touched down on the Chryse Planitia region, and sent back the first close-up photographs of the rust-colored Martian surface. In September of 1976, Viking 2, launched only three weeks after Viking 1, entered into orbit around Mars, where it assisted Viking 1 in imaging the surface and also sent down a lander. During the dual Viking missions, the two orbiters imaged the entire surface of Mars at a resolution of 150 to 300 meters, and the two landers sent back over 1,400 images of the planet's surface.
1974 Turkey invades Cyprus
1973 Nixon is released from Bethesda Naval Hospital after a bout with viral pneumonia. Speech from Rose Garden : "What we were elected to do, we are going to do, and let others wallow in Watergate."
Marcie1971 Marcie meets "Sir" Peppermint Patty at camp.      top
      Marcie is Peppermint Patty's best friend. From the moment they met at summer camp, Marcie has called Peppermint Patty "Sir" out of admiration and misguided manners. An unlikely pair, they seem to have nothing in common yet that is what makes their friendship so genuine. Marcie is the smartest of the Peanuts gang, but also the most naive. She's always willing to help out her friend with school work and she's not above sharing test answers or calling her on the phone to remind her of homework assignments. There is an innocence to Marcie and Peppermint Patty is her protector. Marcie is also completely inept when it comes to sports, yet they still let her play on the baseball team. If Marcie and Peppermint Patty ever have a falling out it's likely to be over Charlie Brown, whom they both secretly love.
Marcie meets Peppermint Patty
1969 Men walk on the Moon      top
      At 22:56 p.m. EDT, Apollo-11 astronaut Neil Armstrong, nearly 400'000 km from earth, speaks these words to millions listening at home: "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." A moment later, he steps off the lunar module Eagle, becoming the first human to walk on the surface of the moon. Another astronaut, "Buzz" Aldrin, joins him a few minutes later, and together they take photographs of the terrain, plant a US flag, run a few simple scientific tests, and depart. The astronauts leave behind a plaque that reads: "Here men from the planet Earth first set foot on the Moon — July 1969 A.D — We came in peace for all mankind."
     At 22:56 EDT, US astronaut Neil Armstrong, 390'000 km from Earth, speaks these words to more than a billion people listening at home: "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." A moment later, he stepped off the lunar landing module Eagle and became the first human to walk on the surface of the moon.
      The US effort to send astronauts to the moon has its origins in a famous appeal President John F. Kennedy made to a special joint session of Congress on 25 May 1961: "I believe this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to Earth." At the time, the United States was still trailing the Soviet Union in space developments, and Cold War-era America welcomed Kennedy's bold proposal.
      In 1966, after five years of work by an international team of scientists and engineers, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) conducted the first unmanned Apollo mission, testing the structural integrity of the proposed launch vehicle and spacecraft combination. Then, on 27 January 1967, tragedy struck at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, when a fire broke out during a manned launch-pad test of the Apollo spacecraft and Saturn rocket. Three astronauts were killed in the fire.
      Despite the setback, NASA and its thousands of employees forged ahead, and in October 1968, Apollo 7, the first manned Apollo mission, orbited Earth and successfully tested many of the sophisticated systems needed to conduct a moon journey and landing. In December of the same year, Apollo 8 took three astronauts to the dark side of the moon and back, and in March 1969 Apollo 9 tested the lunar module for the first time while in Earth orbit. Then in May, the three astronauts of Apollo 10 took the first complete Apollo spacecraft around the moon in a dry run for the scheduled July landing mission.
      At 09:32. on 16 July, with the world watching, Apollo 11 took off from Kennedy Space Center with astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin Aldrin Jr., and Michael Collins aboard. Armstrong, a 38-year-old civilian research pilot, was the commander of the mission. After traveling 400'000 km [? that might be the Earth-Moon distance in a straight line, but not, surely, as the spacecraft flies?] in 76 hours, Apollo 11 entered into a lunar orbit on 19 July. The next day, at 13:46, the lunar module Eagle, manned by Armstrong and Aldrin, separated from the command module, where Collins remained. Two hours later, the Eagle began its descent to the lunar surface, and at 16:18 the craft touched down on the southwestern edge of the Sea of Tranquility. Armstrong immediately radioed to Mission Control in Houston, Texas, a famous message: "The Eagle has landed." At 22:39, five hours ahead of the original schedule, Armstrong opened the hatch of the lunar module. As he made his way down the lunar module's ladder, a television camera attached to the craft recorded his progress and beamed the signal back to Earth, where hundreds of millions watched in great anticipation. At 22:56, Armstrong spoke his famous quote, which he later contended was slightly garbled by his microphone and meant to be "that's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind." He then planted his left foot on the gray, powdery surface, took a cautious step forward, and humanity had walked on the moon. "Buzz" Aldrin joined him on the moon's surface at 23:11, and together they took photographs of the terrain, planted a US flag, ran a few simple scientific tests, and spoke with President Richard M. Nixon via Houston. By 01:11 on 21 July, both astronauts were back in the lunar module and the hatch was closed. The two men slept that night on the surface of the moon, and at 13:54 the Eagle began its ascent back to the command module. Among the items left on the surface of the moon was a plaque that read: "Here men from the planet Earth first set foot on the moon — July 1969 A.D — We came in peace for all mankind." At 17:35, Armstrong and Aldrin successfully docked and rejoined Collins, and at 00:56 on 22 July Apollo 11 began its journey home, safely splashing down in the Pacific Ocean at 12:51 on 24 July. There would be five more successful lunar landing missions, and one unplanned lunar swing-by, Apollo 13. The last men to walk on the moon, astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt of the Apollo 17 mission, left the lunar surface on 14 December 1972. The Apollo program was a costly and labor intensive endeavor, involving an estimated 400'000 engineers, technicians, and scientists, and costing $24 billion (close to $100 billion in 2001's dollars). The expense was justified by Kennedy's 1961 mandate to beat the Soviets to the moon, and after the feat was accomplished ongoing missions lost their viability.
Apollo-11 fut lancé le 16 juillet 1969. Il était piloté par Neil A. Armstrong, Edwin E. Aldrin et Michael Collins. Après un vol analogue à celui d’Apollo-10 jusqu’à la mise en orbite lunaire, Armstrong et Aldrin passèrent dans le L.M., laissant Collins dans le module de commande. La descente eut lieu, et l’atterrissage sur la Lune se fit le 20 juillet par 230 5H de longitude E. et 00 64H de latitude N. Tandis que des millions de personnes regardaient l’événement à la télévision, Armstrong, dans son volumineux scaphandre spatial, descendit l’escalier du L.M. et posa le pied sur la Lune. Ses premières paroles furent alors : "C’est un petit pas pour un homme, mais un bond de géant pour l’humanité." Il indiqua que ses chaussures s’étaient enfoncées d’environ trois millimètres dans la poudre fine de la surface lunaire.
      Aldrin rejoignit Armstrong, et ensemble ils passèrent près de deux heures à prendre des photographies, à ramasser environ trente kilogrammes d’échantillons de sol lunaire (y compris deux carottes témoins), à planter un drapeau américain, à mettre en place une expérience sur le vent solaire, un sismographe et un réflecteur de rayon laser. Ils marchèrent et coururent sur la Lune où règne une gravité six fois plus faible que sur la Terre. Une caméra de télévision, placée à quelque distance du module lunaire, transmettait les images à la Terre. Pendant qu’ils étaient sur la Lune, le président Richard M. Nixon félicita les astronautes par téléphone.
     — El módulo de exploración lunar Eagle se posa en la Luna a las 15.17 horas. A las 22.56 (ambas hora de Houston), Neil Armstrong pisa la superficie lunar y poco después lo hace Edwin Aldrin. Son los primeros pasos del hombre sobre la Luna.
1969 US plan for military escalation in Vietnam.      top
      A top-secret study, commissioned by presidential assistant Henry Kissinger, is completed by the office of the Chief of Naval Operations. Code-named Duck Hook, the study proposed measures for military escalation against North Vietnam. The military options included a massive bombing of Hanoi, Haiphong, and other key areas of North Vietnam; a ground invasion of North Vietnam; the mining of harbors and rivers; and a bombing campaign designed to sever the main railroad links to China. A total of 29 major targets in North Vietnam were pinpointed for destruction in a series of air attacks planned to last four days and to be renewed until Hanoi capitulated. This plan represented a drastic escalation of the war and was never ordered by President Richard Nixon. However, Nixon did order certain elements of the proposal, such as the intensified bombing of Hanoi and Haiphong and the mining of North Vietnamese harbors, in response to the 1972 North Vietnamese Easter Offensive.
1967 Race riots in Memphis Tenn
1964 Viet Cong troops overrun town      top
      Viet Cong forces overrun Cai Be, the capital of Dinh Tuong Province, killing 11 South Vietnamese militiamen, 10 women, and 30 children. On July 31, South Vietnam charged that the enemy troops involved in the attack were North Vietnamese Army regulars and that Chinese communist advisors led the attack. This claim was never verified, but it is likely that North Vietnamese regulars participated in the action. This incident and numerous intelligence reports indicated that North Vietnamese regular troops were moving down the Ho Chi Minh Trail in great numbers to join the fighting in South Vietnam. This marked a major change in the tempo and scope of the war in South Vietnam and resulted in President Lyndon B. Johnson committing US combat troops. North Vietnamese forces and US troops clashed for the first time in November 1965, when units from the newly arrived 1st Cavalry Division engaged several North Vietnamese regiments in the Battle of the Ia Drang Valley in the Central Highlands.
1962 Pope John XXIII sends invitations to all 'separated Christian churches and communities,' asking each to send delegate-observers to the upcoming Vatican II Ecumenical Council in Rome.
1960 First submerged submarine to fire Polaris missile (George Washington)
1960 USSR recovered 2 dogs; first living organisms to return from space
1956 France recognizes Tunisia's independence
1954 Vietnam — France peace agreement signed      top
      Two-and-a-half months after the French defeat at Dien Bien Phu in northern Vietnam, France agrees to recognize Vietnamese sovereignty at the Geneva Conference, bringing the first Indochina War to a close. Along with the French-Viet Minh armistice, the Final Declaration of the Geneva Conference, which divides Vietnam along the 17th parallel, is given approval by representatives from the major powers.
      The declaration stipulates that Vietnam could be reunified after democratic elections were held. However, such an event was unlikely; although his Viet Minh forces only controlled the North, Communist leader Ho Chi Minh was popular all over Vietnam. Instead, South Vietnam was placed under the control of the French-backed government of Bao Dai, and freedom of movement between the two Vietnams was permitted for ten months, thus facilitating the separation of the Vietnamese people along ideological lines. It was this international acceptance of a partitioned Vietnam that led to the outbreak of the Second Indochina War in 1964, with the United States filling the vacuum left by the French.
Ce jour est l'aboutissement de la Conférence de Genève. Ce jour, un accord entre les Français et les Vietnamiens met fin à la Guerre d’Indochine. C’est l’écrasement de la garnison française à Dien-Bien-Phû qui a placé les Français en situation de faiblesse et les a obligés d’accepter des accords fort peu favorables …
1950 In one of the first US actions in the Korean War, the US Army's Task Force Smith is pushed back into the Naktong perimeter by superior North Korean forces.
1950 El Parlamento belga autoriza la vuelta del rey Leopoldo III.
1949 Israel's 19 month war of independence ends
1948 Syngman Rhee es nombrado presidente de Corea del Sur.
1948 Truman orders first US peacetime draft      top
      President Harry S. Truman institutes a military draft with a proclamation calling for nearly 10 million men to register for military service within the next two months. Truman's action came during increasing Cold War tensions with the Soviet Union. Following World War II, the United States moved quickly to demobilize the vast military it had constructed during the conflict. During the war, more than 16 million men and women served in the US military; when the war ended in August 1945, the US people demanded rapid demobilization. By 1948, less than 550'000 men remained in the US Army. This rapid decline in the size of America's military concerned US government officials, who believed that a confrontation with the Soviet Union was imminent. During the years following World War II, relations between the USSR and the US deteriorated rapidly. In 1947, the president issued the Truman Doctrine, which provided aid to Greece and Turkey to oppose communist subversion.
      In that same year, Secretary of State George C. Marshall warned that Western Europe was on the brink of political and economic chaos that would leave it defenseless against communist aggression; the following year, Congress approved billions of dollars in financial assistance to the beleaguered nations. In June 1948, the Soviets cut all land traffic into the US-British-French zones of occupation in West Berlin. The United States responded with the Berlin Airlift, in which tons of food and supplies were flown in to sustain the population of the besieged city. In light of these events, many people in the US believed that actual combat with the Soviet Union was not far away. In response to this threat, President Truman announced on 20 July 1948, that the United States was re-instituting the draft and issued a proclamation requiring nearly 10 million men to register for military service in the next two months. Truman's action in July 1948 marked the first peacetime draft in the history of the United States, thereby underlining the urgency of his administration's concern about a possible military confrontation with the Soviet Union. It also brought home to the US people in concrete terms the possibility that the Cold War could, at any moment, become an actual war. In 1950, possibility turned to reality when the United States entered the Korean War, and the size of America's armed forces once again increased dramatically.
1944 US invades Japanese-occupied Guam in WW II
1944 US President F. D. Roosevelt was nominated for an unprecedented fourth term of office at the Democratic convention in Chicago.
1942 The first detachment of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps — later known as WACs — began basic training at Fort Des Moines, Iowa.
1922 Togo made a mandate of the League of Nations
1919 I Guerra Mundial: los aliados entregan las condiciones de paz a la delegación germano-austriaca en Saint Germain.
1917 Alexander Kerensky becomes the premier of Russia.
1914 Monday : in the aftermath of the June 28 assassination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand:
  • The Austrian ultimatum to Serbia is delivered to Bad Ischl. Franz Josef get his first look at the "jewel".
    [view text of the ultimatum]
  • 1909 Georges Clemenceau renuncia a la presidencia del Gobierno de Francia por la desconfianza hacia su política naval.
    1903 Giuseppe Sarto elected Pope Pius X
    1900 El conde Ferdinand Zeppelin realiza el primer vuelo a bordo del globo de su mismo nombre.
    1894 The Pullman strike is defeated      top
          During the summer of 1894, the Pullman Palace Car Company was embroiled in what proved to be one of the most bitter strikes in US history. The strike was a direct response to company chief George Pullman and his hardball tactics, most notably his decision in the midst of the Depression of 1893 to preserve profits by slashing wages and hiking up workers' rents.
          A band of frustrated employees implored Pullman to ease rents and restore wages; Pullman responded by firing three of the workers. In May, the workers fired back at their avaricious boss by calling a strike. Backed by the organizational muscle of Eugene Debs and the mighty American Railway Union (ARU), the workers touched off a round of sympathy strikes and boycotts that effectively crippled the Chicago-based company.
          However, Pullman had has own network of powerful allies, including other rail honchos and a number government officials. In hopes of enlisting the aid of the federal military, Pullman and his cronies convinced the government that the strikes and boycotts were inhibiting the delivery of America's mail. Though Pullman's cars didn't carry any mail, the scheme proved effective: in early July, the government banned the boycotts and swiftly shipped troops to Chicago.
          Fighting broke out shortly after the government forces hit the scene; by the time the 2000 federal troops left Chicago on 20 July, the "war" between the troops and the strikers had left thirty-four men dead. The Pullman strikers' ranks and clout had been depleted, and, when American Federation of Labor chief Samuel Gompers' refusal to lend them any substantial support, the rail workers were forced to capitulate to management. In the wake of the settlement, many of the strikers were barred from working in the rail industry.
    1881 Sitting Bull Surrenders      top
          Five years after General George A. Custer's infamous defeat at the Battle of Little Bighorn (25 June 1876), Hunkpapa Teton Sioux leader Sitting Bull, 50, surrenders to the US Army, which promised him amnesty for him and his followers. Sitting Bull had been a major leader in the 1876 Sioux uprising that had resulted in the death of Custer and 264 of his men at Little Bighorn. Pursued by the US Army after the Indian victory, he escaped to Canada with his followers.
          Sitting Bull, born in the Grand River Valley in what is now South Dakota, gained early recognition in his Sioux tribe as a capable warrior and a man of vision. In 1864, he fought against the US Army under General Alfred Sully at Killdeer Mountain, and shortly thereafter dedicated himself to Sioux resistance against ineffectual US-Indian treaties and forced Indian internment on reservations.
          Sitting Bull soon gained a following in not only his own tribe, but in the Cheyenne and Arapaho Native-American groups as well. In 1873, in what would serve as a preview for the Battle of Little Bighorn three years later, an Indian military coalition featuring the leadership of Sitting Bull skirmished briefly with Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer. Sitting Bull was not a strategic leader in the US defeat at Little Bighorn, but his spiritual influence inspired Crazy Horse and the other victorious Indian military leaders. He subsequently fled to Canada, but in 1881 returned to the US and surrendered.
          He was held as a prisoner of war at Fort Randall in South Dakota territory for two years, and then was permitted to live on Standing Rock Reservation straddling North and South Dakota territory. In 1885, he traveled for a season with Buffalo Bill Cody's Wild West show, and then returned to Standing Rock. The spiritual proclamations of Sitting Bull influenced the rise of the "Ghost Dance," an Indian religious movement that proclaimed that the white people would disappear and that the dead Indians and buffalo would return.
          By 1890, his support of the religion had brought him into disfavor with government officials, and on December 15, 1890, forty-three Indian police burst into Sitting Bull's house in the Grand River area of South Dakota, and attempted to detain him at gunpoint. There is confusion as to what happened next. By some accounts, the leader of the police was shot and immediately turned and gunned-down Sitting Bull, while others maintain that the police were instructed by Major James McLaughlin, director of the Standing Rock Sioux Agency, to shoot the chief at any sign of resistance. Whatever the true details, Sitting Bull was fatally shot and died within hours. Subsequently, the Indian police hastily buried his body at Fort Yates within the Standing Rock Reservation.
    1871 British Columbia becomes 6th Canadian province
    1864 Engagement at Rutherford's Farm, Virginia
    1864 Battle of Peachtree Creek — Atlanta Campaign. Confederate General John Bell Hood attacks Union forces under Major General George H. Thomas outside Atlanta.
    1864 Battle of Peachtree Creek
          General John Bell Hood's Confederate force attack William T. Sherman's troops outside of Atlanta, Georgia, but are repulsed with heavy losses. This was Hood's first battle as head of the Army of Tennessee. Hood had assumed the command from Joseph Johnston just two days before when Confederate President Jefferson Davis replaced Johnston after Sherman backed Johnston into this key Southern city. For nearly three months, Sherman had pushed Johnston southward from Chattanooga to Atlanta. Johnston had blocked each of Sherman's flanking maneuvers, but in doing so he lost territory. Davis finally lost patience with Johnston, and selected the more offensive-minded Hood to defeat Sherman. Hood wasted little time. He planned to strike the Army of the Cumberland, commanded by General George Thomas, as it crossed Peachtree Creek. The waterway was deep, and the Confederates destroyed all bridges on their retreat into the outskirts of Atlanta. Hood suspected that the Yankees were most vulnerable when only part of their force was across the creek so he planned a two-pronged assault to hold part of Thomas' army at bay while the rest could be pinned against Peachtree Creek. It was a sound plan, but poor execution doomed the operation. Scheduled for 1:00 p.m. on July 20, the attack was delayed for three hours while Hood's troops shifted into position. The overall assault lacked a general coordination, so units charged the Union positions piecemeal. Twenty thousand Rebels assaulted the same number of Yankees, but the delay proved costly. The Confederates achieved some success, but could not drive the Union troops back into Peachtree Creek. After three hours, Hood ordered a halt to the advance. Hood was not deterred. Two days later, he attacked Sherman's forces again at the Battle of Atlanta.
    1863 Siege of Fort Wagner, Charleston Harbor, South Carolina continues
    1861 Confederate state's congress began holding sessions in Richmond, Virginia.
    1861 Junto al arroyo Bull Run se da la primera gran batalla de la Guerra de Secesión de Estados Unidos.
    1848 First Woman's Rights Convention ends      top
          At the Wesleyan chapel in Seneca Falls, New York, the Woman's Rights Convention — the first of its kind ever held in the United States — began the previous day with almost two hundred women in attendance. The convention was organized by Lucretia Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton (her address to the convention), two Quakers who met at the 1840 World Antislavery Convention held in London.
          As women, Mott and Stanton were barred from the convention floor, and the common indignation that this aroused in both of them was the impetus for their founding woman's rights movement in the United States. In 1848, at Stanton's home near Seneca Falls, the two women, working with Martha Wright, Mary Ann McClintock, and Jane Hunt, sent out a call for a women's conference to be held at Seneca Falls beginning on 19 July.
          The first day of the convention was for women only, but on the second day men were invited to attend — and some forty do, including famous African-American abolitionist Frederick Douglass. Also on 20 July, the convention adopts the Declaration of Sentiments and Grievances, a text modeled on the Declaration of Independence. It enumerates the ways in which men have oppressed women in the US. Next, the convention adopts the "Resolutions," which specifically call for full and equal rights for women, including the right to vote.
          The first Woman's Rights Convention would be followed two weeks later by an even larger meeting in Rochester, New York. Thereafter, national woman's rights conventions would be held annually, providing an important focus for the growing woman suffrage movement.


    1810 Colombia declared independence from Spain
    1808 Guerra de la Independencia Española: entrada en Madrid de José I Bonaparte. El pueblo se abstuvo de hacer manifestaciones.
    1789 Début de la Grande Peur      top
          Ce jour est le début des révoltes paysannes. La peur a joué un rôle important dans le déroulement de la Révolution française : peur du complot aristocratique à la veille du 14 Jul 1789, peur des partageux et des anarchistes au moment de Brumaire 1799, mais le terme de Grande Peur a été réservé aux insurrections paysannes de 1789. Dans les campagnes où sévit la disette, conséquence des mauvaises récoltes, se propagent alors d’étranges rumeurs: des bandes de vagabonds sont transformées par l’imagination populaire en armées de brigands ; les nouvelles les plus inquiétantes viennent de Paris où l’on parle d’une "Saint-Barthélemy des patriotes". L’alarme se répand de village en village, le tocsin sonne, les paysans s’arment, des milices villageoises sont formées.
          Faute de brigands, les campagnards se retournent contre les châteaux, les pillent et brûlent les vieilles chartes où se trouvaient consignés les droits féodaux. On attaque les greniers à sel, on maltraite les garde-chasse et les feudistes. A partir du 20 juillet, le mouvement de panique se propage dans la plus grande partie de la France. Il y a toutefois des exceptions. La Lorraine n’a guère été qu’effleurée ; la majeure partie de la Normandie ne l’a pas ressentie et c’est à peine si on en trouve des traces en Bretagne. Le Médoc, les Landes et le Pays basque, le Bas-Languedoc et le Roussillon demeurent à peu près indemnes ; dans les régions où sévissait la révolte agraire, point de grande peur, tout au plus des alarmes locales." Échappent aussi à la Grande Peur la Flandre, le Hainaut, le Cambrésis et l’Ardenne.
          Mouvement collectif spontané ou complot attribué aux menées des partisans du duc d’Orléans, cette révolte agraire, séquelle indiscutable de la réaction féodale qui avait marqué le règne de Louis XVI, en provoquant à l’Assemblée nationale la célèbre séance de la nuit 4 août 1789, a entraîné la ruine de l’Ancien Régime.
    1788 The governor of the French colony of Pondicherry abandons plans to place King Nguyen Anh back on the throne of Vietnam. However Nguyen went on, with help from French mercenaries to proclaim himself on 01 June 1802 emperor Gia Long of Vietnam, the founder of the Nguyen dynasty.
    1648 The Westminster Larger Catechism is adopted by the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland at Edinburgh. This and the Shorter Catechism have both been in regular use among Presbyterians, Baptists and Congregationalists ever since.
    1500 Isabel La Católica decreta, mediante una Real Cédula, que se devuelvan a sus tierras de origen a todos los indígenas que los conquistadores habían traído consigo.
    1402 Battle of Ankara. The Mongols of Tamerlane, 66, defeat at Çubukovasi near Ankara the Ottomans of sultan Bayezid I, 42, who is taken prisoner and would die in captivity the next March..
    1378 Estalla la Revuelta de los Ciompi, levantamiento de los trabajadores del sector textil en Florencia.
    0514 Saint Hormisdas begins his 9-year reign as Pope
    Deaths which occurred on a July 20:      top
    2003 Sarah McLain, 14, by sudden lightning while playing in a soccer tournament in Fredericton, New Brunswick, across the border from her Springfield, Maine, home.
    2002:: 28 humans, 1 Bengal tiger, 1 lion, from fire at fancy but unlicensed Utopia disco, without fire extinguishers, sprinklers, or marked emergency exits, in Lima, celebrating its two months in operation by a circus party, in which a fire-eater accidentally set curtains on fire, and/or bartenders lighted gasoline in ashtrays setting the ceiling on fire. Some 50 of the 1000 persons present are injured.
    2002:: 13 of 22 picnickers on bus, by landmine near Bamiyan, Afghanistan. They were headed to a park near lake Band-i-Amir, along the main road, instead of avoiding it for fear of mines as passengers had requested. 6 are injured. 5 to 10 million landmines, most of them Soviet, are left in Afghanistan after 23 years of war, and still keep adding some 3000 victims a year to the 100'000 already killed or injured.
    2001 Carlo Giuliani, 23, shot by a carabiniero as he was about to throw a fire extinguisher through the windshield of a police vehicle, in Genoa, where he was among the violent protestors against the summit meeting of the Group of Eight. An anarchist born in Rome, Giuliani had a criminal record that included weapons and drug charges.
    2001 Rajai Abu Rajab, in an explosion destroying the Fatah office in Hebron, West Bank. Eight passers-by are injured. Rajab was an activist in the Tanzim, Fatah's military wing. Palestinians say that an Israeli helicopter fired missiles at the office. Israelis says that it was the premature explosion of a Palestinian terrorist bomb.
    1984 Eugene Scott, on his 77th birthday, of Indianapolis, found beside an interstate highway in Indiana, murdered probably by Alton Coleman.
    1977 Some 80 persons as flash flood hits Johnstown, Pa, causing $350 million damage
    1974 Gaspar Gómez de la Serna, escritor español
    1951 King Abdullah Ibn Hussein of Jordan, assassinated      top
    by a Palestinian extremist while entering a mosque in the Arab sector of east Jerusalem, which was under Jordanian rule.
          Abdullah was a member of the Hashemites, an Arab dynasty said to be directly descended from the Prophet Muhammad. During World War I, with British support, Abdullah led an Arab revolt against Turkish rule in Jordan. In 1921, the British made him the emir of Trans-Jordan, and with Jordanian independence he became the country's monarch. In 1948, he led his Arab Legion forces against the newly declared state of Israel, and he annexed east Jerusalem along with the portions of Palestine now known as the West Bank.
          In 1951, his efforts to create an Arab federation under Hashemite rule end when he is assassinated in Jerusalem. After a brief sojourn on the Jordanian throne, Abdullah's son Talal was in 1952 declared mentally unfit to rule and he adbicated in favor of his eldest son, Hussein ibn Talal. King Hussein, who was crowned on his 18th birthday 531114 and ruled until his death 990307, was the twentieth century's longest serving executive head of state.
    1945 Paul Valéry, French poet
    1944 Klaus von Stauffenberg , 36, Olbricht, others who plotted to kill Hitler, and 4 persons killed by their bomb.      top
         High German officials had made up their minds that Hitler must die. He was leading Germany in a suicidal war on two fronts, and assassination was the only way to stop him. A coup d'etat would follow, and a new government in Berlin would save Germany from complete destruction at the hands of the Allies. That was the plan. This was the reality: Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg, chief of the army reserve, had been given the task of planting a bomb during a conference that was to be held at Berchtesgaden (but was later moved to Hitler's headquarters at Rastenburg).
          Stauffenberg planted the explosive in a briefcase, which he placed under a table, then left quickly. Hitler was studying a map of the Eastern front as Colonel Heinz Brandt, trying to get a better look at the map, moved the briefcase out of place, farther away from where the Fuhrer was standing. At 12:42 p.m. the bomb went off. When the smoke cleared, Hitler was wounded, charred, and even suffered the temporary paralysis of one arm-but he was very much alive. (He was even well enough to keep an appointment with Benito Mussolini that very afternoon. He gave Il Duce a tour of the bomb site.) Four others present died from their wounds.
          As the bomb went off, Stauffenberg was making his way to Berlin to carry out Operation Valkyrie, the overthrow of the central government. In Berlin, he and co-conspirator General Olbricht arrested the commander of the reserve army, General Fromm, and began issuing orders for the commandeering of various government buildings. And then the news came through from Herman Goering — Hitler was alive.
          Fromm, released from custody under the assumption he would nevertheless join the effort to throw Hitler out of office, turned on the conspirators. Stauffenberg and Olbricht were shot that same day. Once Hitler figured out the extent of the conspiracy (it reached all the way to occupied France), he began the systematic liquidation of his enemies. More than 7000 Germans would be arrested (including evangelical pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer), and up to 5000 would wind up dead — either executed or as suicides. Hitler, Himmler, and Goering took an even firmer grip on Germany and its war machine. Hitler became convinced that fate had spared him — "I regard this as a confirmation of the task imposed upon me by Providence"-and that "nothing is going to happen to me.… The great cause which I serve will be brought through its present perils and…everything can be brought to a good end."
          Le IIIe Reich n’aurait pu naître et survivre sans le soutien actif de l’armée. Jusqu’à la guerre, et même jusqu’à Stalingrad, il y a eu concordance entre les objectifs de la politique hitlérienne et les conceptions stratégiques globales des chefs de la Wehrmacht. Les désaccords, quand ils existaient, portaient simplement sur les méthodes. Cela explique que l’armée ait accepté sans protester l’assassinat de von Schleicher (nuit des longs couteaux 340630) et le limogeage de généraux comme von Blomberg et von Fritsch.
          En 1938, un petit groupe d’officiers supérieurs hostiles aux méthodes hitlériennes entra en contact avec des services anglais, mais n’engagea aucune action de résistance réelle. Certes, de nombreux plans furent élaborés dans les années suivantes. Aucun d’eux ne reçut un commencement d’exécution. On invoque d’ordinaire toute une série de hasards ou de circonstances défavorables. En fait, tant que la politique hitlérienne paraissait victorieuse, les chefs militaires refusaient de participer à une action de résistance contre un régime dont ils avaient approuvé jusqu’alors les fondements et les conquêtes. Qui plus est, ces généraux prenaient une part active à ces conquêtes. Ce sont ces "opposants" qui élaboraient les plans d’offensive, commandaient les armées, dirigeaient les services de contre-espionnage des armées hitlériennes et approuvaient, au moins tacitement, les mesures d’extermination contre une partie des populations des territoires occupés quand ils n’y étaient pas directement impliqués.
          La résistance des milieux militaires se précisa après Stalingrad, à partir du moment où il devint évident que la guerre était perdue. Le complot du 20 Juillet 1944 ne s’explique donc pas d’abord par le désir que les généraux auraient eu de mettre fin au IIIe Reich, mais par le souci de trouver à la guerre une issue qui n’eût pas de conséquences catastrophiques pour l’Allemagne telle que la concevaient les chefs de la Wehrmacht: les conjurés souhaitaient obtenir des Anglo-Américains la garantie de conditions de paix "honorables", qui laisseraient au nouveau régime le bénéfice d’une partie au moins des conquêtes hitlériennes.
          À l’intérieur, les conjurés imaginaient un système conservateur (étaient prévus, sous certaines conditions, le maintien du Parti nazi et l’interdiction du Parti communiste). En fait, il existait vers la fin de la guerre de nombreux groupes d’opposants, aux conceptions diverses et parfois divergentes, qui se recrutaient essentiellement parmi les officiers généraux, les hauts fonctionnaires, et dont faisaient partie quelques sociaux-démocrates, mais qui ne s’appuyaient sur aucune base populaire.
          Le plus important d’entre eux est celui qui organisa un attentat contre Hitler et avait élaboré une série de plans pour l’Allemagne d’après le IIIe Reich ; il avait à sa tête Karl Goerdeler, ex-bourgmestre de Leipzig, et le général Beck. Le 20 Juillet 1944, le colonel von Stauffenberg déposa au grand quartier général de Hitler une bombe de faible puissance. L’attentat échoua : Hitler ne fut que légèrement blessé. Mais ce qui empêcha la conjuration de réussir, ce furent en premier lieu les hésitations inouïes des chefs militaires qui, après l’annonce de l’attentat, se laissèrent devancer par les contre-mesures rapides des dirigeants hitlériens. La répression fut brutale et aboutit à l’exécution de centaines de personnes, la Gestapo ayant réussi à "remonter les filières" et à capturer la plupart des conjurés. Il faudra encore attendre un an pour que le " Führer " délivre ce monde de sa personne …
          Cet attentat du 20 Juillet 1944 pose naturellement la question de la "Résistance" intérieure dans le Reich allemand. Au début du IIIe Reich, les nationaux-socialistes rencontrent beaucoup d’hostilité au sein de la population. Mais les SA, les SS et la Gestapo, par des méthodes d’une brutalité et d’une rapidité rare, réduisent au silence tous leurs adversaires en moins d’une année. Le meurtre, la déportation, l’intimidation, le jugement sans défense, les faux-témoins, la délation, tout est bon et surprend les "démoctrates" naïfs. Les irréductibles survivants ou ceux qui sont encore en liberté sont rares. La population dans son ensemble suit Hitler et elle écoute la propagande de Goebbels.
          Toutefois, de 1934 à 1939, certains milieux résistent encore aux nationaux-socialistes, notamment les Églises, protestante et catholique. On évoquera Dietrich Bonhoeffer, qui sera arrêté en 1943 et pendu en 1945, en même temps que Canaris et Osten, et ses lettres de captivité, Widerstand und Ergebung, traduites en français sous le titre Résistance et soumission. Qu’on n’oublie pas, par exemple, que c’est à la suite d’une courageuse intervention de l’Église que les nazis durent mettre fin à l’odieuse pratique des massacres de malades mentaux dans les hôpitaux.
          La guerre venue, la résistance intérieure allemande s’organise peu à peu, et prend diverses appellations comme l’Orchestre rouge, la Rose blanche. L’opposition de certains généraux et la conspiration, avec Goerdeler, Oster, Canaris, aboutissent à l’attentat manqué du 20 juillet 1944 (opération Walkyrie) contre Hitler. Cependant, si cette résistance intérieure allemande eut ses héros et ses martyrs, elle ne fut qu’une lutte, poignante, d’hommes désarmés, sans appui étranger, face à un dictateur dont seuls, finalement, les Alliés purent avoir raison.
    — Atentado fallido contra Hitler en la sede del Estado Mayor en Rastenburg, por oficiales de la resistencia antinazi mandados por Claus Graf Schenk, que fueron ejecutados.
    1937 Guglielmo Marconi, 63      top
          Marconi played a major role in the development of early radio. Born in Italy 18740425, he studied engineering. Marconi began experimenting with crude radio devices at the age of 20, and he later moved to England, where he won government support for his work. Marconi filed a telegraphy patent in 1896, and two years later, he transmitted wireless telegraph signals across the Atlantic. He founded Marconi's Wireless Telegraphy Service, and in 1900, he patented "improvements for the apparatus of wireless telegraphy." The patent was later overturned based on previous work by Nicola Tesla and others.
          In 1899, a US newspaper asked Marconi to rig two ships with wireless telegraphs, so they could transmit the results of a yacht race. Marconi's system would later enable ships to send distress calls. Marconi made important discoveries about short-wave radio that became the basis for modern long-distance radio. In 1909, he won the Nobel Prize for Physics.
    1936 El general Sanjurjo, que iba a encabezar el levantamiento militar inicio de la Guerra civil española, muere en accidente de aviación cuando regresaba desde Lisboa a España.
    1936 Francisco Ascaso Budría, líder anarcosindicalista español.
    1923 Doroteo Arango: Muere asesinado a tiros el general Pancho Villa, en la ciudad de Parral, en el estado mexicano de Chihuahua.
    1903 Leo XIII, Pope since 1878.
    1902 Baldomero Galafre y Giménez (or Jiménez), Spanish artist born on 24 May 1849.
    1898 Frank Reid, a Skagway, Alaska, city engineer, from wounds suffered in the 08 July gunfight in which he killed “Soapy” Smith.
    1889 Homesteaders murdered by Wyoming ranchers
          Having made the mistake of homesteading on land previously controlled by a Wyoming cattle king, homesteaders Ella Watson and James Averell are accused of rustling and hanged. As the days of the open range cattle industry faded, conflicts between powerful western cattle barons and the homesteaders who were settling on "their" lands were inevitable. The homesteaders had every right to claim their 320 acres of windswept grasslands but some old-time ranchers tried to discourage the settlers in hopes of preserving more rangeland for their cattle. Usually, such discouragement was limited to cowboys cutting the settlers' barbed wire fences or diverting irrigation water, but the tactics occasionally became more violent. A common complaint among ranchers was that many of the homesteaders were actually rustlers who stole their cows and horses. The ranchers' accusations were surely exaggerated, but the charge of rustling allowed them to take drastic actions. Such may have been the case with Ella Watson and James Averell. Watson, a former prostitute from Kansas, came to Wyoming Territory in 1886. That same year, she received a license to wed James Averell, a Wyoming saloonkeeper who had a homestead on the Sweetwater River. The couple either never married or kept the union secret so that Watson could file a second homestead near Averell's place. Both claims were located on lands claimed by the powerful rancher Albert Bothwell without legal foundation, and Bothwell used the lands for grazing his herds. Bothwell-described as one of the most arrogant cattleman in the region-eventually accused both Watson and Averell of rustling. On this day in 1889, Bothwell and five of his men took the couple prisoner and hanged them. Although the men were later charged with murder, a pro-rancher jury acquitted them of any wrongdoing. It was the only incidence of a woman being executed-legally or illegally-in the history of Wyoming.
    1879 Mike Gordon, from wounds received the previous day when shot by Doc Holliday.      top
         Despite his formidable reputation as a deadly gunslinger, Doc Holliday only engaged in eight shootouts during his life, and it has only been verified that he killed two men. Still, the smartly dressed ex-dentist from Atlanta had a remarkably fearless attitude toward death and danger, perhaps because he was slowly dying from tuberculosis. In 1879, Holliday settled in Las Vegas, New Mexico, where he opened a saloon with a partner. Holliday spent his evenings gambling in the saloon and he seemed determined to stress his health condition by heavy drinking. A notorious cad, Holliday also enjoyed the company of the dance hall girls that the partners hired to entertain the customers — which sometimes sparked trouble.
          On 19 July 1879, a former army scout named Mike Gordon tried to persuade one of Holliday's saloon girls to quit her job and run away with him. When she refused, Gordon became infuriated. He went out to the street and began to fire bullets randomly into the saloon. He didn't have a chance to do much damage — after the second shot, Holliday calmly stepped out of the saloon and dropped Gordon with a single bullet. Gordon died the next day.
          The following year, Holliday abandoned the saloon business and joined his old friend Wyatt Earp in Tombstone, Arizona. There he would kill his second victim, during the famous "Gunfight at the O.K. Corral" in October 1881. During the subsequent six years, Holliday assisted at several other killings and wounded a number of men in gun battles. His hard drinking and tuberculosis eventually caught up with him, and he retired to a Colorado health resort where he died in 1887. Struck by the irony of such a peaceful end to a violent life, his last words reportedly were "This is funny."
    1877 Nine B&O strikers, shot by the militia      top
         The Baltimore and Ohio railroad strike turns bloody: the Maryland militia opens fire on the rail workers, leaving nine strikers dead and touching off a round of riots that engulf Baltimore. The effects of the Baltimore and Ohio incident surged across the East Coast and, the next day, workers in rail-heavy Pittsburgh hit the picket line to stage a sympathy strike. Coming but a day after the outbreak of fighting in Maryland, the Pittsburgh strike was all but bound to degenerate into violence. And, when the state militia entered the scene, Pittsburgh was primed to go up in flames. The workers greeted the troops with a volley of stones; the militia responded with a round gun fire and Pittsburgh's sympathy strike soon turned into an all out war. During the ensuing battle, ignited fires ravaged the surrounding area and forced the militia to beat a temporary retreat. But, after a night of a fighting that cost local rail companies some $10 million, the troops regained a modicum of control over the city.
          While the brutish events in Pittsburgh were repeated in Chicago later that month, the bloodshed did little to aid the Baltimore and Ohio strikers: indeed, the rail workers ultimately signed an agreement that did little to ameliorate their conditions.
    1867 Twenty thousand Miao (Hmong) rebels in Guizhou, killed by Chinese Imperial troops .
    1866 Georg Friedrich Bernhard Riemann, of tuberculosis, mathematician, born on 17 September 1826. Riemann's ideas concerning geometry of space had a profound effect on the development of modern theoretical physics. He clarified the notion of integral by defining what we now call the Riemann integral.
    1819 John Playfair, Scottish mathematician born on 10 March 1748. He worked on geology, physics and geometry and studied at the University of Saint Andrews. His best-known contribution to mathematics is his form of Euclid's parallelism axiom.
    1793 Antoine Raymond Joseph de Bruni chevalier d'Entrecasteaux, 56 ans.     top
          Le chevalier d’Entrecasteaux, Antoine de Bruni, vice-amiral français et parent de Suffren. Il entre dans la marine en 1754 et acquiert rapidement la réputation justifiée d’être l’un des plus habiles navigateurs de son temps. Une partie de sa carrière se déroule dans l’océan Indien où il occupe les fonctions de chef de la station navale de Pondichéry en 1786, puis de gouverneur de l’île de France (l’actuelle île Maurice) de 1787 à 1789.
          Il est surtout connu pour avoir dirigé l’expédition que Louis XVI et l’Assemblée constituante envoyèrent à la recherche de La Pérouse, et dont les objectifs ne furent pas seulement humanitaires mais aussi scientifiques. Disposant de deux bâtiments, la Recherche et l’Espérance, ce dernier commandé par Huon de Kermadec, il recrute un état-major de choix dans les rangs duquel figurent les futurs amiraux Willaumez et Jurien de La Gravière ainsi que l’ingénieur hydrographe Beautemps-Beaupré.
          L’expédition quitte Brest le 28 septembre 1791 et, pendant près de deux ans (1792-1793), parcourt le Pacifique sans pouvoir élucider le mystère de la disparition de La Pérouse, mais en accomplissant une œuvre scientifique considérable dans l’exploration et la cartographie de l’Océanie, principalement en Tasmanie, en Australie méridionale et en Mélanésie.
          De graves divergences politiques opposant partisans et adversaires de la Révolution, jointes à un mauvais état sanitaire, expliquent la fin prématurée du voyage: à l’escale de Surabaya (octobre 1793), les Hollandais profitent de cette situation de faiblesse pour s’emparer des navires et faire prisonnier l’équipage; mais les deux chefs de l’expédition avaient déjà succombé à la maladie, Kermadec le 6 mars, Entrecasteaux le 20 juillet. L’un de ses officiers, Élisabeth Paul de Rossel, a laissé un récit de cette expédition, Voyage d’Entrecasteaux (1808).
    1770 Francis Cotes, English painter born in 1726. — LINKSMiss Summerville ) — Admiral Thomas Craven
    1751 Benjamin Robins, English engineer and mathematician born in 1707 in bath... er ... make that “in Bath”. He dies of fever in Madras, India, whose defenses he had been helping to prepare. Author of A discourse concerning the nature and certainty of Sir Isaac Newton's method of fluxions and prime and ultimate ratios — Remarks on M. Euler's Treatise of Motion (1739) — New Principles of Gunnery (1742) — Rockets and the heights to which they ascend (1750).
    1744 Isaac de Moucheron “l'Ordonnance”, Dutch painter born in 1667, son of Frederic de Moucheron. — MORE ON MOUCHERON AT ART “4” JULYLINKS
    1609 Federico Zuccaro (or Zuccari), Italian Mannerist painter born in 1542. — MORE ON ZUCCARO AT ART “4” JULY LINKS
    1031 Robert le Pieux, dit ainsi bien qu'il ait été excommunié en 989, alors qu'à dix-neuf ans, il a répudié sa première femme Rozala, âgée de plus de cinquante ans. Il meurt aimé de tout son peuple. En particulier, parce que son règne s'est déroulé sans guerre. Pour sa générosité et pour l'attention qui est la sienne pour atténuer les misères de son peuple, il est presque considéré comme un saint. C'est Henri Ier qui lui succède.
    Births which occurred on a July 20:
    1950 William Knox Schroeder, grew up to be one of the four Kent State students shot dead by the National Guard on 04 May 1970.
    1934 Le radar breveté en France      top
          Ce jour est déposé un brevet à l’Office National (français) des Brevets. Il " concerne un nouveau système de repérage d’obstacles et ses applications maritimes ou aériennes à partir d’ondes métriques très courtes (0,16 mètre). Autrement dit " Invention du Radar " ! Mais parallèlement, les Américains et les Allemands arrivent aux mêmes résultats à peu de choses prè ! Les inventeurs Français, M. Ponte et C. Gutton, étaient ingénieurs à la Compagnie générale de Télégraphie sans fils.
    1933 Nelson Doubleday publisher (Doubleday)/owner (NY Mets)
    1925 Jacques Delors, político socialista francés, ex presidente de la Comisión Europea.
    1920 Elliot L. Richardson, principled US public servant.      top
          Richardson was US Attorney General (1973), Secretary of Defense (1973), who died on 31 December 1999. He is best known for refusing President Richard M. Nixon's 20 October 1973 “Saturday Night Massacre” order to fire special prosecutor Archibald M. Cox who was demanding the White House tapes that would reveal the truth about the Watergate scandal (arising from the Nixon-ordered 17 June 1972 burglary at the Democratic Party's headquarters). Richardson chose to resign instead; then his second-in-command, William D. Ruckelshaus refused too and Nixon fired him. Robert H. Bork, who was then the Solicitor General and thus the Justice Department's highest-ranking remaining official, then vilely, servilely, and super-vilely fired Cox. In 1987, Bork got what he deserved when the Senate refused to confirm his nomination to the Supreme Court.
         Richardson enlisted in the Army to serve in World War II. As a first lieutenant, he landed in Normandy on D-Day (06 June 1944) with the 4th Infantry Division, as a 23-year-old platoon leader. That day he risked his life to cross a minefield to rescue another officer whose foot was blown off.
          In 1945 Richardson resumed his studies at Harvard Law School, where he became editor and president of the Harvard Law Review. Later he was a law clerk for Judge Learned Hand and then for Justice Felix I. Frankfurter.
          Richardson began his public career as an aide to Senator Leverett Saltonstall, a venerable Republican. In 1959 he became the United States attorney in Boston. In 1969, he was appointed undersecretary of state at the State Department, a position he held until 1970, when he was named to head the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. He was named defense secretary at the beginning of 1973 and became attorney general after four months, serving until his “Saturday Night Massacre” resignation.
          Richardson served as secretary of commerce in the administration of President Gerald R. Ford, becoming the first person ever to have held four cabinet posts in the US government. Richardson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the US's highest civilian honor, in 1998 (in WW II he had earned a Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts).
    1919 Sir Edmund Hillary one of first 2 men to reach summit of Mt Everest.
    1918 Hector Poleo, Venezuelan artist who died in 1989.
    1900 Kurt Seligmann, Swiss painter who died on 02 January 1962. — LINKS
    1899 Fritz Glarner, Swiss US painter who died in 1972. — moreLINKS
    1895 László Moholy-Nagy, Hungarian US painter and photographer who died in 1946. — MORE ON MOHOLY~NAGY AT ART “4” JULY LINKSEiffel Tower
    1894 Errett Lobban Cord, in Warrensburg, Missouri.     top
          Cord moved to Los Angeles while he was in high school and remained there after his graduation, starting a number of car dealerships. His prowess as a salesman led him to pursue bigger goals and look for a way to invest the $100'000 he had managed to save in a few years of work. “Then I started looking around,” he said, “I wanted to do something with that $100'000.” Cord found the struggling Auburn Automobile Company in Auburn, Indiana, a company on its last legs, having completed only 175 cars in 1923. Cord convinced Ralph Bard, head of a Chicago group that had purchased Auburn, to take him on as general manager at no cost, with the stipulation that if Cord turned the company around he would be allowed to purchase controlling interest.
          He launched a sales blitz, rapidly clearing out Auburn’s inventory and enabling it to show a profit. By 1926 Cord was company president and the following year the company established dividends at $4 a share and 8% in stock. Cord then launched an aggressive business strategy, purchasing companies in many manufacturing fields and trading his stock on the New York Stock Exchange. He acquired Duesenberg in order to add a luxury car line to his Auburn cars. Sound stock management allowed Cord to expand his operations during the Depression while many other companies were merely struggling to survive.
          Cord established an empire consisting of Auburn, Duesenberg, Stinson Aircraft, Lycoming Motors, Limousine Body, and a number of engineering plants. He place his new acquisitions in a holding company called the Cord Corporation. In 1933 he added New York Shipbuilding and Checker Cab to his conglomerate. During the 1930s sales of Cord’s cars stumbled. Their heavy pricetags could not be born by the tightening market. Nevertheless, during the late 1930s Cord’s company produced some of the finest classic cars in automotive history.
         But Cord’s empire fell as precipitously as it had risen. He and Morris Markin, President of Checker, were investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission for stock manipulation. In one case Cord and Markin had purchased 70'000 shares of Checker at $7. Their action created the illusion of great activity in their stock, driving the price up. Markin and Cord unloaded their shares at an average price of $59 per share. Both men denied the charges, but neither contested a court injunction preventing them from further impropriety. The same day of the verdict Cord sold all of his interest in the Cord Corporation for $2.6 million
    1893 Alexander, second son of king Constantine of Greece (ruled 1913-1917 and 1920-1922). Alexander became king on 12 June 1917, when the WW I Allies forced his father to resign so that Greece would enter the war on their side. Shortly afterwards Eleuthérios Venizélos became premier and dominated the king and the government. Alexander died of blood poisoning on 25 October 1920, after being bitten by a pet monkey. [The French Revolution had never thought of giving Louis XVI a pet monkey. Much neater than the guillotine.]
    1890 Giorgio Morandi, boring Italian painter who died on 18 June 1964, specialized in Still Life. — MORE ON MORANDI AT ART “4” JULY LINKSStill Life (The Blue Vase)Still Life (Cups and Boxes)Still-Life with a BallStill-Life with a Dummy [No, it's not a self~portrait. In fact there is no dummy in the picture. The dummy must be the person who admires it.] — Still-Life with a BriocheStill-LifePaesaggio (Casa Rosa)
    1881 Léon de Smet, Belgian artist who died on 09 September 1966.
    1873 Alberto Santos Dumont, brasileño precursor de la navegación aérea.
    1872 Wireless Telegraph patented by dentist Dr. Mahlon Loomis, 46, ... the radio is born. Already in October, 1866, he had conducted a demonstration before members of Congress in which he succeeded in establishing wireless 2-way communication between kite-suspended antennas 29 km apart. Loomis died in 1886 without his invention having received the support it needed.
    1869 Mark Twain's The Innocents Abroad is published      top
          Mark Twain's book The Innocents Abroad is published, recounting his journey to Europe and the Holy Land in 1869. The book became a bestseller. Samuel Langhorne Clemens, who adopted the pseudonym Mark Twain, was born in Hannibal, Missouri. Apprenticed to a printer at age 13, he later worked for his older brother, who established the Hannibal Journal. In 1857, Clemens became a steamboat pilot's apprentice, earned his license, and piloted his own boats for two years. During his time as a pilot, he picked up the term "Mark Twain," a boatman's call noting that the river was only two fathoms deep, the minimum depth for safe navigation.
          When Clemens returned to writing in 1861, working for the Virginia City Territorial Enterprise, he wrote a humorous travel letter signed by "Mark Twain" and continued to use the pseudonym for nearly 50 years. In 1866, Clemens went to Hawaii as a correspondent for the Sacramento Union. Later, he traveled the world writing accounts for papers in California and New York, which became The Innocents Abroad. In 1870, Clemens married the daughter of a wealthy New York coal merchant and settled in Hartford, Connecticut, where he continued to write travel accounts and lecture. In1875, his novel Tom Sawyer was published, followed by Life on the Mississippi (1883). Bad investments left Clemens bankrupt after the publication of his masterpiece Huckleberry Finn in 1885, but he won back his financial standing with his next three books. In 1903, he and his family moved to Italy, where his wife died. Her death left him sad and bitter, and his work, while still humorous, grew distinctly darker. He died in 1910.
  • The $30,000 Bequest, and Other Stories
  • 1601 (with commentary)
  • The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
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  • The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (first edition and commentary)
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  • The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, and Other Sketches (1867 edition) (HTML at miningco.com)
  • Chapters From My Autobiography (HTML at miningco.com)
  • Christian Science: With Notes Containing Corrections to Date (HTML at GeoCities)
  • Concerning the Jews
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  • A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
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  • Eve's Diary, illust. by Lester Ralph (illustrated HTML at miningco.com)
  • Extract From Captain Stormfield's Visit to Heaven (Gutenberg text)
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  • Is Shakespeare Dead? From My Autobiography
  • Is Shakespeare Dead? From My Autobiography
  • King Leopold's Soliloquy: A Defense of His Congo Rule
  • Life on the Mississippi
  • Life on the Mississippi (Boston: James R. Osgood and Company, 1883)
  • The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg
  • Mark Twain's Speeches
  • Merry Tales
  • The Mysterious Stranger
  • Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc
  • The Prince and the Pauper
  • HTML at americanliterature.com
  • Gutenberg text
  • Roughing It
  • illustrated HTML at LOC
  • illustrated HTML at Virginia
  • Twain trans.: Struwwelpeter (in German, English, and French), by Heinrich Hoffmann (illustrated HTML at struwwelpeter.com)
  • Tom Sawyer, Detective (Gutenberg text)
  • Tom Sawyer Abroad (Gutenberg text)
  • The Tragedy of Pudd'nhead Wilson
  • HTML with commentary at lm.com
  • text at Wiretap
  • A Tramp Abroad
  • HTML at Colorado
  • text at Wiretap
  • What is Man? and Other Essays
  • HTML at lm.com
  • Gutenberg text
  • 1864 Erik Karlfeldt Sweden, poet (Nobel 1918-refused; 1931-posthumous)
    1860 Terrick John Williams, British artist who died on his 76th birthday.
    1850 John Graves Shedd, president of Marshall Field and Company, first Chicago merchant to give his employees a half-day off on Saturdays.
    1847 Max Liebermann, German painter who died in 1935. — MORE ON LIEBERMANN AT ART “4” JULYLINKSSelf-Portrait (lithograph) — Country Tavern at BrunnenburgOn the Way to School in Edam
    1785 Mahmud II Ottoman sultan, Westernizer, reformer.
    1686 Jacques Ignatius de Roore, Flemish artist who died on 17 July 1747.
    1737 Nicolás Fernández de Moratín, poeta y dramaturgo español.
    1304 Francesco Petrarca,      top
    —     Pétrarque nait à Arezzo, en Italie, il sera l’un des plus importants poètes du Quattrocento Italien. Dans ses Rimes, ses Triomphes ou ses Odes, il a su faire valoir son génie créatif, sa sensibilité profonde, sa connaissance du monde extérieur autant que du monde intérieur. Cet historien, archéologue, chercheur de manuscrits anciens, érudit, curieux de tout, ne s’arrêtant que quand il savait Tout d’une chose et sachant qu’il ne connaîtrait jamais le Tout d’aucune chose, fut le premier des grands humanistes de la Renaissance. Les poèmes sont écrits en Toscan du XIVème siècle. Ils sont composés en l’honneur de Laure de Noves et réunis dans un Canzionere publié en 1470.
    — Born in exile in the town of Arezzo, he was the first son of Pietro di Parenzo di Garzo (Ser Petracco dell'Incisa) and Eletta Canigiani. His family exiled by the same people who exiled Dante shortly before from Florence, Petrarch spent the first few years of his life in Incisa (Ancisa) not all that far away. In 1307 his brother Gherardo was born. A few years later in 1311 the family moved to Pisa to meet the new Emperor and in 1312 to Avignon following the Holy See. But because of the popularity of the city at the time and not being able to find accomodations in Avignon the family settled in Carentras, a small town just outside the city. In 1316 he went to study in Montpellier with Gherardo. Shortly after in 1319 his mother died, possibly of the plague which would follow Petrarch the rest of his life. In 1320 he was studying law in Bologna. Petrarch despised the profession of lawyers. Although the logic of law appealed to him, the dishonest associated with the profession made his stomach turn. In 1326 when his father dies, Petrarch abandons his study of law and turns to the classics of which he studied in small amounts during his schooling. His brother, Gherardo, enters the service of the church as Petrarch does as well. Their family moneys all gone the church would support him for the rest of his life. On 06 April 1327, Good Friday by the older calendar, and then at an Easter mass Petrarch sees Laura for the first and second times. Who Laura really was, and even if she really existed is a little bit of a mystery, but she is thought to be Laura de Noves, born in 1310 and married to Hugues II de Sade in 1325. Falling madly in love with a woman he may have never even talked to, Petrarch would go on to write hundreds of poems to her; which in years to come would get transported around the world and translated into just about every known language. By 1330 Petrarch finishes his Minor Orders of the church and enters the service of Cardinal Colonna. He will spend the rest of his life in the service of the Church under different Cardinals and Bishops. He will undertake many diplomatic missions across Europe for various reasons. He will become ambassadors and be instrumental in bringing about Italian unity by fulfilling these roles.
          In 1333 Petrarch takes a trip across France and the Netherlands and into Germany. Petrarch spent a great deal of his life in foreign lands and often wrote on how life itself was a journey, an all to common theme in today's literature, but one which was not fully explored before Petrarch's time. While in Liege he comes across Cicero's Pro Archia. Petrarch's love for the classics only grows stronger. He begins to attempt to revive classical writings believing that their teachings have been lost. By 1336 Petrarch begins to compile Rerum vulgarium fragmenta also called Il Canzoniere. By 1374 when Petrarch dies it contains 366 poems, mostly sonnets to and about the love of his life which he could never have, Laura. Of the 366 poems 263 would be written while she was alive and 103 after her 08 April 1848 death.
          Laura would die while Petrarch was traveling later on 08 April 1348, a Good Friday. As Petrarch writes: on the same hour of the same day but 21 years after he first saw her. She would leave behind 11 children and a husband who would remarry within a year. A year later in 1337, and on the road again he travels to Flanders and the Brabant and then to Rome for the first time in his life. Later that year, his first child, Giovanni is born out of wedlock. Who the mother was is unknown, but by Petrarch's own account he did not treat her as well as he should have. The relationship between Petrarch and his son was a disappointment to Francesco. He describes Giovanni as "Intelligent, perhaps even exceptionally intelligent, but he hates books". Giovanni will stay with Petrarch until he was 20 years old (1357), at which time living in Italy, Petrarch will send his son to Avignon and in 1361 Giovanni would die from the plague. In 1340, as Petrarch writes, on the same day he received two invitations, one from Rome and one from Paris, each asking him to accept the crown as poet laureate. He choses Rome and on April 8th, 1341 (Easter Sunday) he is crowned by Orso dell'Anguillara, a roman noble. Petrarch's speech calls on a rebirth of classical wisdom and poetry. He develops the idea of the laurel being the symbol for poetic and literary immortality.
          By 1343 Petrarch's second child, Francesca is born, again to an unnamed mother out of wedlock. Francesca later marries Francescuolo da Brossano and bears two children of her own, a daughter named Eletta in 1362 and a son, Francesco whom Petrarch adored. Francesco, the grandson, will die in 1368, probably of the plague. In April of the same year (1343) Gherardo, Petrarch's brother, becomes a Carthusian monk. This causes Petrarch to examine his faith and write Secretum. It is composed of three imaginary dialogues between Petrarch and Saint Augustine, who speak in the presence of Lady Truth. The Secretum is a "secret" book, intended for private meditation; Petrarch kept it by him for the rest of his life. It reflects his sense of inner crisis and depression, resolved by Augustine's wise counsel and recollection of his readings, particularly Virgil, Ovid, and Augustine's Confessions. In 1345 and living in Verona Petrarch discovers a collection of letters written by Cicero and collected by him over 1000 years ago. Petrarch begins to follow Cicero's lead and starts a collection of his own letters which he called Familiares (Familiar Letters). His Familiares will end up being a collection of 350 letters in 24 books spanning from 1325 to 1366. Petrarch would terminate Familiares years later and begin Seniles (Letters of the elder years). That collection would contain 128 letters in 18 books written between 1361 and 1373. Petrarch would spend a considerable amount of time in these collections, rewriting letters and sometimes composing new ones on the fly. He would write to kings and queens, he would write to popes and cardinals. He would write to the ghosts of Cicero and Homer. Petrarch would live out the rest of his life in Italy. Still in the service of the church and going on diplomatic missions from time to time.
          On the morning of 19 July 1374, a day before his 70th birthday, Francesca who's family was living with him at the time, would walk into Francesco's study and find him slumped over his desk having died sometime during the night with a pen in his hand and Laura in his heart. He was buried in the parish church. Six years later, his remains were transferred to a sarcophagus built in Arquà by his son-in-law. His writings influenced countless others during his lifetime, others such as Boccaccio to write his own great works. And centuries later others such as Shakespear would study his works and copy his sonnets. Petrarch lived though the harshest boughts of the plague and lost nearly everyone he knew to it. His mother and father, his son, his grandson, numerous friends, and of course Laura, for which his writings of her will live on forever, all died as victims of the disease. So great were his writings that royalty treated him, the son of exiled nobles, like a king and in a letter to a friend he even goes as far as to say that he has caused his own plague to spread over Europe, one which has caused people to take up pen and paper and write and read. And so ended the dark ages and the start of Humanism.
    — See The Triumph of Petrarch (1565), engraving by Galle [1537-1612] after van Heemskerck [1498-1574]. — The Triumph of Fame, (1504, 353x335cm; 484x450pix, 112kb) tapestry from a Flemish set of The Triumphs of Petrarch — from a French manuscript: The Triumph of Fame diptych: left page _ right page.
    CanzionereCanzoniere (zipped) — Triunfi (zipped)
    Works (most in English translations)Selections from letters of Petrarch (translated into English)
    PETRARCH WROTE TO YOU:          top
    — It is possible that some word of me may have come to you, though even this is doubtful, since an insignificant and obscure name will scarcely penetrate far in either time or space. If, however, you should have heard of me, you may desire to know what manner of man I was, or what was the outcome of my labors, especially those of which some description or, at any rate, the bare titles may have reached you. ... ...
    Holidays Columbia-1819, Tunisia-1956 : Independence Day/Día de la Independencia / US : Moon Day (1969)

    Religious Observances RC : St Margaret of Antioch, virgin/martyr (3rd cen) / Old Catholic : St Jerome Emiliani, confessor / Santos Aurelio, Pablo de Córdoba, Sabino, Julián, Máximo y Elías; santas Casia, Paula, Marina y Severa.

    Thoughts for the day:
    “The only red menace in the US has always been the sunburn.”
    [not to mention attacks by killer tomatoes]
    “A very great part of the mischiefs that vex this world arises from words.” —
    Edmund Burke, British statesman [1729-1797].
    “A very great part of the words that do mischief in this world arises from vexation.”
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