ON THIS DAY: August 13, 2018

August 13th is

Filet Mignon Day

Prosecco wine Day

International Lefthander’s Day *


MORE! Lucy Stone, Alfred Hitchcock and Maryam Mirzakhani, click



Central African Republic – Independence Day

India – Hariyali Teej
(Hindu festival celebrating love)

Samoa, and Tokelau–
Father’s Day

Tunisia – Women’s Day

Zimbabwe – Heroes’ Day


On This Day in HISTORY

900 – Count Reginar I Longneck of Hainault (land now straddles Belgium-France border) rises against Zwentibold of Lotharingia (medieval kingdom which included Holland, Belgium, much of Germany and Lorriane) and slays him near present-day Susteren in the Netherlands

1521 – Spanish conquistador Hernando Cortez captures Tenochtitlan from the Aztecs

1625 – Erasmus Bartholin born, Danish physician, mathematician and physicist; discovered double refraction, which he could not explain but knew it contradicted Newton’s optical theories

1752 – Maria Carolina of Austria born, Queen consort of Naples and Sicily, the wife of King Ferdinand IV & III and sister of Marie Antoinette; de facto ruler of her husband’s kingdoms, she oversaw many reforms, including revocation of a ban on Freemasonry, enlargement of the navy, and expulsion of Spanish influence; a believer in enlightened absolutism until the French Revolution, during which she made Naples a police state

1792 –French Royal family imprisoned, King Louis XVI declared enemy of the people

1792 – Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen born, Queen consort of English King William IV, Adelaide, South Australia, is named for her

1818 – Lucy Stone born, abolitionist, women’s rights pioneer and author; co-organizer of the first National Women’s Convention; co-founder of the American Woman Suffrage Association; and founder of the Woman’s Journal

1820 – Sir George Grove born, English writer and editor; noted for his multi-volume Grove’s Dictionary of Music and Musicians, which has been revised, expanded and reprinted many times

1829 – Martha J. Lamb born, American author, editor, historian and reformer; owner-editor of The Magazine of American History; co-founder of the Home for the Friendless and the Half-Orphan Asylum; secretary of the United States Sanitary Commission

1849 – Leonora Kearney Barry born in Ireland, American labor reformer and women’s rights activist, only woman to hold national office in the Knights of Labor

1851 – Felix Adler born in Germany, American professor of political and social studies; social reformer/founder of the NY Society for Ethical Culture, based on belief in “deed rather than creed”; founded tuition-free school for children of working-class parents, and a doctor and nurse home visit program for invalids in poor districts

1860 – Annie Oakley born, stage name of Phoebe Ann Moses Butler, American target and exhibition shooter, star of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show

1866 – Giovanni Agnelli born, cofounder, then chairman of Fabbrica Italiana di Automobili Torino, which became Fiat

1867 – George Luks born, American ‘Ashcan’ school painter

Self Portrait – 1907 by George Luks

1876 – First day of premiere of Wagner’s Ring Cycle at Bayreuth Festspielhaus

1879 – John Ireland born, British composer and pianist

1890 – Ellen Osiier born, Danish 1924 Olympic champion; winner of the gold medal in the first women’s fencing event in the Olympics, the Women’s Individual Foil competition; her teammate, Grete Heckscher, won the Bronze

1898 – Carl Gustav Witt discovers first near-Earth asteroid, 433 Eros

1889 – William Gray patents a coin-operated telephone

1899 – Alfred Hitchcock born, UK film director AFI Life Achievement honoree and 5-time Oscar nominee for suspense films like Rebecca, Rear Window, and Psycho

1902 – Felix Wankel born, German engineer, inventor of the rotary engine

1907 – The first taxicab begins operating in NYC

1912 – Salvador Luria born in Italy, American microbiologist; co-winner of 1969 Nobel Prize in Physiology for discoveries in replication mechanism and viral genetic structures

1914 – Grace Bates born, American mathematician and academic, one of the few women who earned a Ph.D. in math in the 1940s; she had to fight to get into advanced classes in mathematics in high school and college. She had to petition to become the only woman studying differential equations at Middlebury College, which was segregated by sex. She got her master’s at Brown University in 1938. Bates taught in elementary and secondary schools for several years, then went to University of Illinois to get her Ph.D., in 1949. She taught at Mount Holyoke College, became a full professor, then emeritus before her 1979 retirement; author of The Real Number System and Modern Algebra, Second Course

1918 – BMW is established as a public company in Germany

1918 – Opha May Johnson is the first woman of 305 to enlist in the U.S. Marine Corps

WWI Marine Recruiting Poster with photo of Opha May Johnson

1920 – The Battle of Warsaw begins in which the Poles will defeat the Soviet Red Army

1931 – The first U.S. community hospital is dedicated in Elk City OK

1933 – Joycelyn Elders born, American physician and research scientist, public health administrator as vice admiral in the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, first African American and second woman appointed as U.S. Surgeon General

1934 – Al Capp’s comic strip “L’il Abner” makes its newspaper debut

1937 – The Battle of Shanghai between the Republic of China and the invading Imperial Japanese Army, the first major engagement in the Second Sino-Japanese War

1942 – Disney’s Bambi premieres at New York’s Radio City Music Hall 

1943 – Ertha Pascal-Trouillot born, acting President of Haiti (1990-1991), the first woman in Haiti to hold the office; she is also one of the first women in Haiti to earn a law degree. After several years as a federal judge (1975-1988), she became the first woman justice on Haiti’s Supreme Court

1947 – Margareta Winberg born, Swedish Social Democratic politician; Swedish Ambassador to Brazil (2003-2007); Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden (2002-2003); Minister of Gender Equality (1998-2002); Minister for Labour (1996-1998); Minister for Agriculture (1994-1996). Outspoken feminist: in her interview for the 2005 Swedish documentary The Gender War, she expressed strong support for radical feminism, particularly feminist sociologist Eva Lundgren’s theory of the process of normalization of violence against women, including the role played by religion, which got Winberg into political hot water

1948 – Kathleen Battle born, American operatic coloratura soprano; she started singing gospel music with the choir at the African Methodist Episcopal Church in her hometown of Portsmouth, Ohio, but her professional career began in 1972 when she auditioned for Thomas Schippers, who chose her to sing the soprano solo in Brahms’ German Requiem at the Festival dei Due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy. This led to more orchestral concerts back in the U.S., a 1973 grant from the Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund for Music to support her career, and her 1975 opera debut in The Barber of Seville with the Michigan Opera Theatre. She was an established artist at the Metropolitan Opera in NY by the 1980s

1954 – Radio Pakistan broadcasts “Qaumī Tarāna”, the national anthem of Pakistan for the first time

1960 – The Central African Republic declares independence from France

1960 – The first two-way phone conversation by satellite takes place using Echo 1, NASA’s first telecommunications balloon satellite, launched the day before

1961 – Berlin divided by barbed wire to stop refugee flight, precursor to the Berlin Wall

1963 – Valerie Plame born, American operations officer at the CIA (1985-2006) until her identity as a covert officer was leaked to the press by Richard Armitage of the State Department and Vice President Cheney’s Chief  of Staff, Lewis “Scooter” Libby, during the George W. Bush administration; when the information was made public, she resigned, and worked with a ghostwriter on Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House; since then, she has co-authored with Sarah Lovett a spy novel called Blowback, published in 2013

1965 – Jefferson Airplane debuts at San Francisco’s Matrix Club

1967 – U.S. premiere of  Bonnie and Clyde, with Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway

1973 – Nixon institutes Economic Stabilization Program wage and price controls


1976 – International Left Hander’s Day * is launched by Left Handers International

1981 – President Reagan signs into law the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, which cut corporate taxes, increased military spending, and slashed domestic programs. The Federal Deficit doubled from $20 trillion to $40 trillion. An Orrin Hatch-sponsored rider, the Adolescent Family Life Act, enabled federal money to be used for promotion of abstinence, and for religious instruction on sex in public school sex education classes. In 1987, the Supreme Court partially upheld an ACLU court challenge to AFLA, stopping the religious instruction on sex in public schools

1993 – U.S. Court of Appeals rules that Congress must save all e-mails

1998 – A monument to the 255 people killed trying to cross the Berlin Wall is dedicated

2003 – Libya agrees to a $2.7 billion compensation fund for the families of the 270 people killed in the 1988 Pan Am bombing

2004 – The 28th summer modern Olympic games open in Athens

2008 – American Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps wins his 10th and 11th career gold medals, becoming the gold medal record-holder

2012 – Taylor Swift releases single “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” in U.S.

2014 – Maryam Mirzakhani wins the Fields Medal for Outstanding Discoveries in Mathematics, becoming the first woman and first Iranian to win the award


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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