ON THIS DAY: May 17, 2017

May 17th is

Cherry Cobbler Day

Same Sex Marriage Day *

Turn Beauty Inside Out Day *

National Walnut Day *

World Hypertension Day *

World Neurofibromatosis Day *

World Telecommunications and Information Society Day *

International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia *


MORE! Edward Jenner, Rosalía de Castro and Erik Satie, click



Congo – Liberation Day

France – Cannes: Festival de Cannes
(Cannes Film Festival opens)

Malaysia – Perlis: Raja’s Birthday

Nauru – Constitution Day

Norway, Svalbard & Jan Mayen –
Syttende Mai (Constitution Day)

Spain – Galicia:
Día del las Letras Galegas *


On This Day in HISTORY

1642 – Under the authority of the Roman Catholic Société Notre-Dame de Montréal, missionary Paul de Chomedey, Sieur de Maisonneuve founds the Ville Marie de Montréal, in Nouvelle-France (now Quebec province of Canada)

1673 – Louis Jolliet and Jacques Marquette begin exploring the Mississippi River

1749 – Edward Jenner born, English physician and scientist who was the pioneer of smallpox vaccine, the world’s first vaccine

1792 – The Buttonwood Agreement: The New York Stock Exchange is founded by brokers meeting under a tree on what is now Wall Street 

1794 – Anna Brownell Jameson born in Dublin, British author; The Diary of an Ennuyée, The Loves of the Poets, Characteristics of Women


1818 – Ezra Otis Kendall born, American astronomer, celestial cartographer and mathematician

1836 – Virginie Loveling born, Belgian poet, novelist, and children’s author under the pen name W. E. C. Walter

1838 – Mary Edwards Bryan born, American journalist, editor, and novelist; editor for several different publications; one of the best paid women editors in New York in 1891

1845 – Jacint Verdaguer born, prominent Catalan poet, and priest

1860 – Charlotte Barnum born, American mathematician and social activist, first woman to receive a Ph.D. in mathematics from Yale University

1863 – Rosalía de Castro publishes Cantares Gallegos, the first book in the Galician language – celebrated in Galicia since 1963 as Día del las Letras Galegas *

1865 – The International Telegraph Union (later the International Telecommunication Union) is established in Paris – see 1969 for World Telecommunications history*

1866 – Erik Satie born, French avant-garde composer and musician

1873 – Henri Barbusse born, French novelist, WWI soldier, communist and lifelong friend of Albert Einstein; Le Feu (Under Fire)

1873 – Dorothy Richardson born, British journalist, feminist and author of Pilgrimage, a sequence of 13 novels

1875 – The first Kentucky Derby is run, won by Aristides

1902 – Greek archaeologist Valerios Stais discovers the Antikythera mechanism, an ancient mechanical analog computer

1903 – Lena Levine, American psychiatrist and gynecologist; director, Margaret Sanger Research Bureau of New York, prominent in the development of marriage counseling and birth control

1918 – Birgit Nilsson born, Swedish dramatic soprano, famed Wagnerian

1937 – Hazel R. O’Leary born, American lawyer and educator; first woman and first African American to serve as U.S. Secretary of Energy (1993-1997); president of Fisk University (2004-2012)

1946 – U.S. President Truman seizes control of the nation’s railroads, delaying a threatened strike by engineers and trainmen

1954 – The United States Supreme Court hands down a unanimous landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas, declaring that racially segregated public schools were inherently unequal

1958 – National Walnut Day * is proclaimed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower

1963 – Jan & Dean’s “Surf City” is released

1969 – Soviet Venera 6 begins its descent into the atmosphere of Venus, sending back atmospheric data before being crushed by pressure

1969 – The Who release their album Tommy in the U.S

1969 – World Telecommunication Day is first celebrated, to mark the founding of the International Telecommunication Union in 1865. In 2005, the World Summit on the Information Society asks the UN General Assembly to declare May 17 as World Information Day. In 2006, the two events are merged into World Telecommunications and Information Society Day *

1971 – The musical Godspell opens in New York City

1973 –The Watergate Hearings begin in the U.S. Senate, televised nationally

1978 – The Children’s Tumor Foundation is formed, the first grassroots organization solely dedicated to finding treatments for Neurofibromatosis (NF), a multi-symptom disease which can be inherited from a parent, but half of those diagnosed with NF have no history of the disease in their family. NF can cause non-cancerous tumors to grow on nerves anywhere in the body, but may also affect cognitive skills, hearing and bone structure.  The CTF helps to coordinate and publicize World Neurofibromatosis Day * events and fundraising worldwide

1980 – Rioting causes 18 deaths in Miami’s Liberty City neighborhood after an all-white jury in Tampa acquits four former Miami police officers of beating a black man to death

1983 – The U.S. Department of Energy declassifies documents showing world’s largest mercury pollution event in Oak Ridge, Tennessee (ultimately found to be 4.2 million pounds), in response to the Appalachian Observer’s Freedom of Information Act request

1990 – The General Assembly of the World Health Organization (WHO) eliminates homosexuality from the list of psychiatric diseases – see also 2004 entry

1996 – U.S. President Bill Clinton signs “Megan’s Law,” requiring neighborhood notification when sex offenders move in

1997 – Zaire is officially renamed the Democratic Republic of the Congo

2000 – Turn Beauty Inside Out Day * is launched to encourage women, and especially girls to embrace the beauty that comes from being true to yourself, and resisting societal pressure to be obsessed with outer appearance, especially being unhealthily thin – Beauty that shines from within lasts  a lifetime

2000 – Two former Ku Klux Klansmen are arrested on murder charges in the 1963 church bombing in Birmingham AL, killing four black girls

2004 – The first legal same-sex marriages in the U.S. are performed in the state of Massachusetts, now celebrated as Same Sex Marriage Day *

2004 – The first International Day Against Homophobia (Transphobia and Biphobia * are added later) is launched to coordinate international events which spotlight LGBT rights violations. On this day in 1990, the World Health Organization (WHO) removed homosexuality from its list of psychiatric diseases

2005 – World Hypertension Day * is inaugurated by the World Hypertension League, a section of the International Society of  Hypertension, to promote regular checks of blood pressure levels, and promote prevention and treatment of this “silent killer”

2011 – Arnold Schwarzenegger issues a statement confirming a Los Angeles Times report that he had fathered a child with a woman on his household staff over a decade earlier


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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