ON THIS DAY: June 17, 2018

June 17th is

Fathers’ Day

Apple Strudel Day

Eat Your Vegetables Day

World Tesselation Day *

World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought *


MORE! John Kay, Susan B. Anthony and M.C. Escher, click



Argentina – Paso a la Inmortalidad del Gral de Güemes
(immortal General Don Martín Miguel de Güemes)

China – Dragon Boat Festival

El Salvador – Día del Padre
(Fathers’ Day)

Finland – Sodankylä:
Midnight Sun Film Festival

Iceland – Independence Day

Switzerland – Basel:
Art Basel on the Münsterplatz

United States – Massachusetts:
Bunker Hill Day


On This Day in HISTORY

1239 – Edward Longshanks born, will be King Edward I of England (1272-1307)

Probable Portrait of Edward I of England

1244 – After the Disputation of Paris, a commission of Christian theologians condemns the Talmud to be burned; twenty-four carriage loads of Jewish religious manuscripts are set on fire in the streets of Paris

1462 – After the Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II (the Conqueror) invades Wallachia to put a stop to Vlad III the Impaler’s attacks on the Turks, Vlad launches a surprise night attack in an attempt to kill the Sultan

1579 – Sir Francis Drake claims a land he calls ‘Nova Albion’ (now northern  California) for Queen Elizabeth I of England

1610 – Birgitte Thott born, Danish scholar, writer, and early feminist who was an advocate for educating women; fluent and literate in her main area of study, Latin, and several other languages, including English, French, German and Hebrew; notable for her translations of published works into Danish, especially her 1,000-page translation of the Philologus of Roman Stoic philosopher Seneca, which was the first in Danish, and added new words to the Danish language

1631 – Mumtaz Mahal dies during childbirth. Her husband, Mughal emperor Shah Jahan I, will spend the next 17 years building her mausoleum, the Taj Mahal

1704 – John Kay born, English inventor of the flying shuttle, which he patented in 1733. It increased the speed of weaving for woolen manufacturers so greatly that weavers in Colchester petitioned the King to stop Kay’s invention. His device was frequently copied by others, forcing him to launch numerous patent infringement lawsuits, which nearly bankrupted him; he moved to France, and negotiated with the French government, which gave him an annual pension in exchange for his patent and instructions for its use

1775 – The Battle of Bunker Hill (actually mostly on nearby Breed’s Hill), in Charlestown, Massachusetts, part of the Siege of Boston by British troops, who were planning to take the heights surrounding Boston to gain control of the city and its harbor. The Americans discovered their plan, and set up redoubts on Bunker Hill and Breed’s Hill during the night, and fortified lines across Charlestown Peninsula; the British attacked the next morning, their first two assaults were repulsed, but the Americans ran out of ammunition, and were forced to retreat to Cambridge. Though it was a tactical victory for the British, they had 1,054 dead and wounded, including 19 officers killed and 62 wounded, while the smaller American force suffered 115 killed, and 305 wounded, and it also proved that colonial militiamen would stand up to the British regulars in battle

Battle of Bunker Hill, by Percy Moran – 1909

1789 – The Third Estate in France declares itself a national assembly and undertakes the framing of a constitution

1818 – Charles Gounod born, French composer

1821 – E. G. Squier born, American newspaper editor and archeologist; co-author of Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley (1848), a landmark study of the Mound Builders of North America, in which they employed systematic analysis, accurate mapping, and documentation of the surveyed sites, now standard in the field

1856 – The Republican Party opens its first convention, in Philadelphia

1865 – Susan La Flesche Picotte born, of the Omaha tribe, first Native American physician (1889), fought tuberculosis and alcoholism on the reservation, campaigned for land rights and a reservation hospital (1913), later named for her

1867 – John Robert Gregg born in Ireland, American inventor of short-hand

1873 – Susan B. Anthony’s trial starts; she is accused of voting illegally on November 5, 1872, in Rochester, New York


1882 – Igor Stravinsky born, innovative Russian composer

1885 – The Statue of Liberty arrives in New York City aboard the French ship Isere

1888 – Aleksandr Friedmann born, Russian mathematician and physical scientist, provided early evidence that the universe is expanding, later confirmed by Edwin Hubble’s observations

1898 – Maurits Escher born, known as M.C. Escher, Dutch artist and printmaker

Lizards, by M.C Escher

1900 – Evelyn Graham Irons born, Scottish journalist who wrote mostly for the Evening Standard; she was one of the first WWII newspaperwomen to arrive in Paris after it was liberated, and the first woman journalist to reach Hitler’s Eagle’s Nest after its capture;  she was the first woman war correspondent to be decorated with the French Croix de Guerre; she was also the first woman to receive the British Royal Humane Society’s Stanhope Medal in 1935 for courageously rescuing a woman from drowning at Tresaith Beach, Cardiganshire; in 1952, she was sent to cover the U.S. presidential election, and stayed on in New York; in 1954, she broke the news embargo on the overthrow of Guatemalan President Jaobo Arbenz Guzmán, by hiring a mule to ride to Chiquimula, while other journalists, forbidden to cross the border, waited in a bar in Honduras. So she was the first reporter to reach the Provisional Government’s headquarters; an editor for a rival paper sent his reporter a telegram ordering him to “offget arse onget donkey”

1902 – Sammy Fain born, American composer of popular songs, collaborated with lyricist Irving Kahal on “Let a Smile Be Your Umbrella” and “I’ll Be Seeing You”; composed scores and songs for movies and television; won Best Original Song Oscars for  “Secret Love”(1954)  and “Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing” (1955)

1903 – Ruth Graves Wakefield born, inventor of the Toll House Cookie, the first chocolate chip cookie, at the Toll House Inn near Whitman MA in the 1930s

1907 – Charles Eames born, American designer and architect; with his wife Ray, made significant contributions to modern architecture, furniture and graphic design

1908 – Trude Weiss-Rosmarin born, editor, writer, co-founder of the School of the Jewish Woman (1933), publisher of the “Jewish Spectator” (1936)

1914 – John Hersey born, American novelist, journalist and war correspondent; won the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for his novel A Bell for Adano; his factual account of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima has been continuously in print since its publication in 1946

1919 – Kingman Brewster, Jr. born, Yale University President (1963-1977), U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain (1977-1981); Master of University College at Oxford (1986-1988)

1928 – Amelia Earhart embarks on the first trans-Atlantic flight by a woman

1940 – Vichy French government asks Germany for terms of surrender in World War II

1943 – Chantal Mouffe born, Belgian political theorist, best known for co-authoring Hegemony and Socialist Strategy: Towards a radical democratic politics with Ernesto Laclau, a post-Marxist redefining of Leftist politics, and her controversial book, Agonistics: Thinking the World Politically

1948 – Jacqueline Jones born, American social historian; author of works on race, slavery, class and economics (including feminist economics); she is a MacArthur Fellow and won the 1986 Bancroft Prize for her second book, Labor of Love, Labor of Sorrow: Black Women, Work, and the Family from Slavery to the Present, which combines traditional historical sources with feminist scholarship; followed by The Dispossessed, America’s Underclasses from the Civil War to the Present, which continues her themes  

1951 – Starhawk born Miriam Simos, American writer, activist and theorist of feminist Neopaganism and ecofeminism; her book The Spiral Dance was an inspiration of the Goddess movement

1952 – Estelle Morris born, Baroness Morris of Yardley; British Labour Party politician and former inner-city Humanities teacher; Warwick District Council member (1979-1991); Member of Parliament for Birmingham Yardley (1992-2005); Minister of State for Schools (1998-2001); Secretary of State for Education and Skills (2001-2002); Minister of State for the Arts (2003-2005); after stepping down from government, she became President of the National Children’s Bureau in 2005

1953 – The Soviet Union orders a division of troops with tanks into East Berlin to quell a strike by construction workers that turned into a widespread uprising. Workers, farmers and the public protest heavy military expenditures and shortages of consumer goods, an increase in “work norms” by 10% which meant more work for the same money, combined with raised taxes and higher prices – a ‘perfect storm’ of bad policy decisions

1957 – Danny & the Juniors release “At the Hop”

1959 – Carol E. Anderson born, African American historian, academic and author; professor of African American Studies at Emory University; noted for Bourgeois Radicals: The NAACP and the Struggle for Colonial Liberation, 1941–1960, and White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide, which won the 2016 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism

1963 – U.S. Supreme Court rules 8-1 against requiring the recitation of the Lord’s Prayer or the reading of Biblical verses in public schools in Abington School District v Schempp

1971 – Mildred Fox born, Irish Independent politician; Teachta Dála of the Dáil Éireann (member of the lower house of the Oireachtas, Ireland’s Parliament) for Wicklow (1995-2007); also Wicklow County Council member (1995-2003)

1975 – An American Apollo and a Soviet Soyuz spacecraft dock with each other in orbit, the first link-up between spacecraft from the two nations

1989 – First flight of the B-2 Spirit, known as the Stealth Bomber

1994 – The UN General Assembly designates June 17 as the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought *

2008 – Hundreds of same-sex couples got married across California on the first full day that gay marriage became legal by order of the state’s highest court. (California voters banned gay marriage in November, overturned later by the California Supreme Court)

2015 – During a Bible Study meeting, nine people are killed and three others wounded, in a mass shooting that lasted only six minutes, at the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, including the church’s senior pastor/South Carolina State Senator Clementa Pinckney; the shooter is arrested, tried and convicted of 33 federal hate crime and murder charges, and 9 counts of murder in the South Carolina state courts; currently serving a sentence of life in prison without parole

2015 – Loretta Lynch is sworn in as U.S. Attorney General, by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, using a Bible which once belonged to Frederick Douglass

2016 – World Tessellation Day * is launched by Emily Grosvenor, author of Tessalation!, a children’s book about tesselations (patterns) in nature; she chose June 17 because it is the birthday of M.C. Escher, famous for the complicated patterns in his prints and drawings


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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