ON THIS DAY: January 16, 2017

January 16th is

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Appreciate a Dragon Day *



Civil Service Day *

Hot & Spicy Food Day

National Religious Freedom Day *

MORE! Miguel de Cervantes, Benny Goodman and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, click



Benin – Martyr’s Dayinternational Flags

Democratic Republic of the Congo –
Laurent Kabila Memorial *

India – Tamil Nadu: Thiruvalluvar Day

Russia – Moscow: Winter Festival

On This Day in HISTORY

27 BC – The Roman Republic ends as Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus is granted the title Augustus by the Roman Senate, considered first Emperor of the Roman Empire

378 – General Siyai K’ak’(‘Fire is Born’), Mayan warlord, conquers Tikal, enlarging the domain of Atlati Cauac of  Teotihuacán (dubbed ‘King Spearthrower Owl’ by archaeologists because of the Mayan glyphs used for his name)


550 – During the Gothic War between the Byzantine Empire under Justinian I and the Ostrogothic Kings, King Totila’s troops conquer the city of Rome after a long siege by bribing the Isaurian garrison

929 –  Emir Abd-ar-Rahman III becomes Caliph of Córdoba (912–961)


1412 – The Medici family is appointed official banker of the Papacy

1492 – The first grammar of the Spanish language is presented to Queen Isabella I.

1547 –  Ivan IV, better known as Ivan the Terrible, becomes Czar of Russia

1556 – Philip II (‘the Prudent’) becomes King of Spain

1572 – Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk is tried for treason for his part in the Ridolfi plot to restore Catholicism in England, by assassinating Queen Elisabeth I and putting Mary Queen of Scots on the throne

1605 – The first edition of El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha (Book One of Don Quixote) by Miguel de Cervantes is published in Madrid


1707 – The Scottish Parliament ratifies the Act of Union, paving the way for the creation of Great Britain

1728 – Niccolò Piccinni, Italian composer, is born

1786 – The Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom was signed January 16, 1786, and is commemorated each year on National Religious Freedom Day *. Thomas Jefferson’s landmark statute became the basis for Congressman Fisher Ames’ establishment clause of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

1862 – John C. Frémont is appointed Governor of the new California Territory

1866 – Everet Barney patents the metal screw clamp skate

1868 – William Davis patents a refrigerated railway car, designed for shipping fish

1872 – Henri Büsser, French composer, is born

1874 – Robert W. Service, English-Canadian verse-writer, is born


1883 – Civil Service Day * : The Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act becomes law, creating the U.S. Civil Service Commission to oversee and enforce regulation of competitive exams for non-appointed federal positions, and protection of workers from being fired or demoted for political reasons

1905 – Ernesto Halffter,  Spanish composer, is born

1909 – Ernest Shackleton’s expedition finds the magnetic South Pole

1919 – The U.S. ratifies the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, authorizing Prohibition in the United States one year after ratification

1920 – The League of Nations holds its first council meeting in Paris

1932 – Dian Fossey born, American zoologist


1933 – Susan Sontag born, American author

1938 – Benny Goodman and his orchestra perform at New York’s Carnegie Hall

1944 – General Eisenhower takes command of the Allied invasion force in London

1945 –  Adolf Hitler moves into his underground bunker, the so-called Führerbunker

1957 – Little Richard records “Lucille”

1964 – Hello, Dolly! opens on Broadway, beginning a run of 2,844 performances

1969 – Soviet spacecraft Soyuz 4 and Soyuz 5 perform the first-ever docking of manned spacecraft in orbit, which is also a first in-space transfer of crew between space vehicles

1970 – Buckminster Fuller receives the Gold Medal award from the American Institute of Architects in recognition of a significant body of work of lasting influence


1979 – Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Iranian Shah flees the country with his family,  relocating to Egypt

1991 – Coalition Forces go to war with Iraq, beginning the Gulf War

1992 – El Salvador officials and rebel leaders sign the Chapultepec Peace Accords in  Mexico City, ending the 12-year Salvadoran Civil War that claimed at least 75,000 lives

1998 – Researchers announce an altered gene has helped defend against HIV

2001 – Laurent Kabila, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo since he overthrew Mobutu Sese Seko in 1997, is assassinated by one of his bodyguards

2002 – UN Security Council unanimously institutes an arms embargo and freezes  assets of Osama bin Laden, al-Qaeda, and the remaining members of the Taliban

2004 – Appreciate a Dragon Day * is launched by retired schoolteacher Mrs. Paul, to celebrate dragons and dragon lore, so read your favorite dragon book or create some dragon art


2006 – Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is sworn in as Liberia’s new president., Africa’s first female elected head of state


  • Toothless from How to Train Your Dragon
  • The First Amendment
  • International flags
  • Warrior or priest dancing – from Teotihuacán
  • Mihrab of the Mezquita – Cordoba, Spain
  • Illustration of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza with opening of Don Quixote
  • Robert W. Service with grain of sand quote
  • Dian Fossey with first encounter quote
  • Buckminster Fuller with a Buckminsterfullerene model
  • Dragon sketches for Appreciate a Dragon Day


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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3 Responses to ON THIS DAY: January 16, 2017

  1. Russell says:

    And I read that in Arkansas you have a dual celebration. Robert E. Lee’s Birthday is celebrated. Though many want to change this, they are afraid to do so, because of the chance of a independent state holiday celebrating Lees’ Birthday…..

    Not surprised that the Medic family became the Vatican Banker as the had had three family members serve as Pope, plus different family members serving the Vatican in various posts.

    They were the bankers to see in times of war…..

    • wordcloud9 says:

      All that “War Between the States” BS has kept so much of the American South in stasis. – no growth – spiritual, financial or otherwise – without change.

      The Vatican finances have long been a really tangled web, It’s no wonder they wanted to “keep it in the family.”

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