ON THIS DAY: October 16, 2016

October 16th is


National Dictionary Day *

National Ether Day *

National Feral Cat Day *

National Liqueur Day

World Food Day *


MORE! Noah Webster, Margaret Sanger and  the Chinese Long March, click



Sukkot Jewish harvest celebration, begins at sunset

Italy – Rome:
Roma Glocal Light Festinternational Flags

Morocco – Essaouira:
Moga Festival

Switzerland – St. Gallus Day

U.S. Virgin Islands – Hurricane Thanksgiving Day
(Only if there have been no hurricanes)

Vatican City – Pope’s Election Anniversary


On This Day in HISTORY

1758 – Noah Webster, ‘Father of the American Dictionary’ is born – National Dictionary Day * – You can put in the modern spelling of a word, and see if it’s listed in Noah Webster’s 1828 edition online here: http://webstersdictionary1828.com/Dictionary/


1793 – Marie Antoinette is guillotined in Paris

1829 – Tremont House opens in Boston, hotel rooms cost $2 a day, meals included


1834 – Much of the Houses of Parliament at the Palace of Westminster in London burn to the ground, leaving few of the medieval portions of the palace intact

1841 – Queen’s University is founded by royal charter issued by Queen Victoria in Kingston, Ontario, Canada


1843 – Sir William Rowan Hamilton, Irish physicist, astronomer and mathematician, develops quaternions, a complex numbers system applied to mechanics in three-dimensional space

1846 – Surgical breakthrough: Boston dentist William T.G. Morton uses ether to anesthetize Gilbert Abbott before a tumor is removed by surgeon John Collins Warren, MD.  National Ether Day *commemorates this revolution in the practice of medicine

1859 – John Brown leads a raid the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry, in West Virginia

1869 – Girton College, Cambridge founded, England’s first residential college for women. Women were originally only granted titular degrees – the title of a Bachelor or Master of Arts, but not full rights – they couldn’t vote in the university Senate, sit on committees, or use the library, museums, or laboratories of Cambridge


1875 – The building for Brigham Young Academy is purchased by Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) president Brigham Young,  which will become Brigham Young University

1882 – The ‘Nickel Plate Road’ railroad from Buffalo, New York, to Chicago and St. Louis, begins service

1905 – Indian state of Bengal partitioned by order of  Lord Curzon, British Viceroy of India, into East Bengal, mostly Muslim area, and West Bengal, mostly Hindu, a “divide and rule” policy which outraged both groups, and led to Bengal’s reunification in 1911


1909 – At the first summit meeting between the leaders of the U.S. and Mexico,  Presidents Porfirio Díaz and William Howard Taft (the first serving U.S. President to cross the border into Mexico) are nearly assassinated by a man holding a concealed pistol, who was apprehended only a few feet from the presidents as their procession was passing by the celebrated scout and adventurer, Frederick Russell Burham, and Texas Ranger Private C. T. Moore

1916 – Margaret Sanger opens the first U.S. birth control clinic in Brooklyn, N Y.  Nine days later she is arrested, then convicted of illegally distributing contraceptives. The trial judge holds that women do not have “the right to copulate with a feeling of security that there will be no resulting conception.”


1923 – The Walt Disney Company is founded by brothers Walt and Roy Disney

1934 – Chinese Communists begin the Long March, actually a series of marches, which lasted a year and four days

1939 – The Man Who Came to Dinner opens on Broadway

1944 – Wally Walrus debuts in the Woody Woodpecker cartoon The Beach Nut

1945 – United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (UNFAO) is founded. World Food Day * celebrates UNFAO,and highlights steps to end world hunger


1946 – Ten of the Nazi leaders convicted of war crimes at the Nuremberg Trials are hung in the gymnasium of the Nuremberg Palace of Justice complex, which also houses a large prison facility

1964 – China detonates its first nuclear weapon

1968 – Gold medalist Tommie Smith and bronze medalist John Carlos are kicked off the U.S. Olympic track and field team at the Mexico City games for wearing Olympic Project for Human Rights badges and raising their fists in the Black Power salute on the medals podium. Peter Norman, the white Australian silver medalist, wore an OPHR badge in solidarity with Smith and Carlos


1973 – Henry Kissenger and Lê Đức Thọ are awarded the Nobel Peace Prize,  prompting two dissenting Nobel Committee members to resign. Thọ refused to accept the prize, on the grounds that peace had not actually been achieved in Vietnam.

1975 – Rahima Banu, a two-year-old girl from the village of Kuralia in Bangladesh, is the last known person to be infected with naturally occurring smallpox

1978 – Karol Wojtyla becomes Pope John Paul II, the first non-Italian Pope since 1523

1984 – Archbishop Desmond Tutu is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize


1989 – Prince (with Sheena Easton) releases single, “Arms of Orion”

1995 – The Skye Bridge is opened, connecting the Isle of Skye to the island of Eilean Bàn, which is connected to the Scottish mainland by the Skye Crossing

1998 – Forner Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet is arrested in London on a Spanish warrant requesting his extradition on murder charges

2001 – National Feral Cat Day * is launched by Alley Cat Allies to promote the Trap-Neuter-Return program to stabilize the cat population – cute cat pictures here:  http://www.alleycat.org/meet-our-national-feral-cat-day-poster-cats/

2002 –  Bibliotheca Alexandrina is officially inaugurated, a library and cultural center in the Egyptian city of Alexandria, commemorating the first Library of Alexandria which was destroyed in antiquity. Alexandria University and UNESCO were key supporters of the project


2012 – Existence of exoplanet Alpha Centauri Bb confirmed by European observers



  • Dictionary definition of dictionary
  • International flags
  • Noah Webster montage
  • Tremont House in Boston MA
  • Queen’s University, Kingston ONT – aerial photograph, 1919
  • Girton College, Cambridge UK
  • Detail of British Indian Empire Map, 1909, showing divided Bengal
  • Sanger Clinic, October 26, 1916 -Social Press Association, Library of Congress
  • World Food Day 2016 Poster
  • Black Power Salute – Tommie Smith, John Carlos and Australian Peter Norman
  • Archbishop Desmond Tutu with Nobel committee chair Egil Aarvik
  • Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Alexandria Egypt, designed by Architect Craig Dykers


About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for over 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
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