ON THIS DAY: March 2, 2019

March 2nd is

Banana Cream Pie Day

Dr. Seuss Day *

NEA’s Read Across America Day *

National Speech & Debate Education Day *

Old Stuff Day


MORE! Susanna Salter, Grete Hermann and Ann Leckie, click



Anguilla – James R. Webster’s Birthday
(revolutionary leader, ‘Father of the Nation’)

Balochistan – Baloch Culture Day

Ethiopia – Adwa Victory Day *

Libya – Jamahiriya Day
(Declaration of the People’s Authority)

Myanmar – Peasants’ Day

Puerto Rico – Día de la Ciudadania Americana
(American Citizenship Day)

Sri Lanka – Air Force Day


On This Day in HISTORY

537 – The Ostrogoth army under King Vitiges begins their first siege of the city of Rome; Belisarius, the Byzantine general leading the forces of Eastern Roman Emperor Justinian I, conducts a delaying action outside the Flaminian Gate; he and his detachment of bucellarii (troops responsible for a leader’s safety) are almost cut off

1545 – Thomas Bodley born, English diplomat and scholar; founder of the Bodleian Library at University of Oxford, one of the oldest and largest reference libraries in Europe

1653 – Jan Van Riebeck, who had been recalled by the Dutch East India Company from his position as head of a trading station in Viet Nam when discovered trading on the side for himself, was given a second chance, and in 1652, was sent in command to set up a Dutch supply depot at the Cape of Good Hope, which was intended just to be a fort where Dutch ships could get fresh water and provisions. On this day, the first slave arrived as a stowaway aboard a ship coming from Batavia (present-day Jakarta), who said he had run away from Batavian slaveholder Cornelis Lichthart. Van Riebeck puts him to work for the Dutch East India Company until he can be sent back to Batavia

1657 – The Great Fire of Meireki starts: fanned by high winds, it burns for three days, destroying over 60% of the Japanese capital city of Edo (today’s Tokyo), and killing over 100,000 people

1791 – Long-distance communication speeds up with the unveiling of a semaphore  machine in Paris

1793 – Sam Houston born, American soldier and politician, first in Tennessee, then first & third President of the Republic of Texas, U.S Senator and seventh Governor of the state of Texas

1797 – The Bank of England issues the first one-pound  and two-pound banknotes

1807 –  The U.S. Congress passes “An Act to prohibit the importation of slaves into any port or place within the jurisdiction of the United States  and after the first day of January, in the year of our Lord, One Thousand Eight Hundred and Eight” “from any foreign kingdom, place, or country any negro, mulatto, or person of colour, with intent to hold, sell, or dispose of such negro, mulatto, or person of colour, as a slave, or to be held to service or labour.” Continued trade was still allowed of slaves who were descendants of those currently in the U.S., and smugglers still brought in at least 10,000 more slaves from Africa in spite of the ban

1824 – Bedřich Smetana born, Bohemian composer; ‘father of Czech music’

1831 – Metta Victoria Fuller born, American author, also used pen name Metta Fuller Victor; pioneer of the “dime novel”

1836 – Texas declares independence from Mexico and an ad interim government forms

1859 – Solomon Rabinovich born, pen name Sholem Aleichem, leading Yiddish author and playwright; the musical Fiddler on the Roof is based on some of his stories

1860 – Susanna M. Salter born, first American woman elected as a mayor, of the town of Argonia in Kansas, and an activist in the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. In 1887, her name was put on the ballot by a group of men who were against women entering politics, expecting her to be soundly defeated, which they believed would discourage women from running for office. The ballot was not made public before election day, so she didn’t even know her name was on it until the polls opened. When she agreed to serve if elected, the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union abandoned the candidate they had been supporting and voted en masse for Salter, and the local Republican Party also voted for her, so she was elected by a two-thirds majority. The New York Sun sent a reporter to cover a city council meeting over which she presided, and even newspapers in Sweden and South Africa carried the story. The pay for the office of mayor was a token $1 per year. Salter was the mother of the first baby born in Argonne, and eight more children, one of whom died in infancy during her term of office. She declined to run for reelection. She lived to be 101 years old

1866 – Excelsior Needle Company begins making sewing machine needles

1867 – U.S. Congress enacts a charter to establish Howard University, named for its founder, Civil War General Oliver Otis Howard, with colleges of liberal arts and medicine

1873 – Inez Haynes Irwin born, American author (also published work as Inez Haynes Gillmore) and feminist, member of the National Women’s Party; president of the Author’s Guild (1931–1933); noted for Angel Island

1877 – Rutherford B. Hayes is declared the winner of the 1876 presidential election by the U.S. Congress, even though his opponent, Samuel J. Tilden, won the popular vote

1877 – Harry E. Soref born, American inventor; patents the laminated steel padlock; founds the Master Lock Company in 1921, which becomes well known in 1928 when it ships 147,600 padlocks to federal prohibition agents in NY to lock up the speakeasies they raid

1882 – An assassination attempt is made on Queen Victoria

1896 – Adwa Victory Day * – First Italo-Ethiopian War, Battle of Adwa: Forces of the Ethiopian Empire win a decisive victory over forces of the Kingdom of Italy at Adwa, in northern Ethiopia, ending Italy’s quest to create a substantial African colony by adding Ethiopia to their Eritrea and Italian Somalia territories. Italy signed the Treaty of Addis Ababa, recognizing Ethiopian sovereignty. But in 1935, Mussolini launched the Second Italo-Ethiopian War, an all-war in defiance of the League of Nations, including the use of chemical weapons, and Italy occupied Ethiopia from 1936-1941

1897 – U.S. President Cleveland vetoes legislation that would require a literacy test for immigrants entering the country

1899 – Mount Rainier National Park in the state of Washington is established by the U.S. Congress

1899 – U.S. President McKinley signs a measure creating the rank of Admiral in the U.S. Navy; George Dewey becomes the first U.S. Admiral

1900 – Kurt Weill born, German composer, works with Bertolt Brecht on plays with music, including The Threepenny Opera

1901 – The first telegraph company in Hawaii opens

1901 – U.S. Congress passes the Platt amendment, limiting Cuban autonomy as a condition for withdrawal of U.S. troops

1901 – Grete Hermann born, German mathematician and philosopher; noted for her early work on the foundations of quantum mechanics and her critique of a no-hidden-variable theorem by John von Neumann, which was ignored until 1966, when John S. Bell made almost the same argument. Hermann, a member of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) which Hitler had banned in 1933, left Germany in 1936, going first to Denmark, then to France, and finally to London, where she made a marriage of convenience with a man named Edward Henry in 1938, in order to avoid standing out as a German national. In 1940, her prescience was justified when the British government invoked Regulation 18B of the Defence Regulations of 1939, identifying as enemy aliens thousands of refugees who had fled Germany because of politics or racial heritage, and putting them in internment camps. After WWII ended in 1945, she returned to Germany, and rejoined the SDP, contributing to the Godesberger Programm, the party’s revamping of its orientation and goals from ending capitalism to reforming it, rejecting Marxist class struggle and materialism theories, seeking to expand beyond its trade unionist origins. Hermann became a professor of philosophy and physics at Pädagogische Hochschule in Bremen (University of Education at Bremen), and presided over Philosophisch-Politische Akademie (The Philosophical-Political Academy, a non-profit education and social justice advocacy association) from 1961 to 1978

1903 – The Martha Washington Hotel opens for business in New York City with 416 rooms; the first hotel exclusively for women

1904 –  Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel) born, American writer and cartoonist, beloved children’s book author; Green Eggs and Ham, The Cat in the Hat – celebrated as Dr. Seuss Day *


1908 – In Paris, Gabriel Lippmann introduces three-dimensional color photography at the Academy of Sciences.

1911 – Maurice Maeterlinck’s The Bluebird opens in Paris

1917 – The Russian Revolution begins; Czar Nicholas II abdicates

1917 – Puerto Ricans are granted U.S. citizenship with the enactment of the Jones Act

1919 – Tamara Toumanova born of Russian parents exiled in Paris, prima ballerina; Paris Opera, Les Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo, and Ballet Theatre NY (now the New York City Ballet)

1922 – Frances Spence born, a pioneer in computer programming; one of the original programmers for the ENIAC, the first digital computer; inducted into the Women in Technology International Hall of Fame in 1997

1925 – State and federal highway officials developed a nationwide route-numbering system and adopted the familiar U.S. shield-shaped, numbered highway marker

1931 – Tom Wolfe born, American non-fiction author, novelist and newspaper reporter

1931 – Mikhail Gorbachev born, Soviet President (1990-1991), Central Committee General Secretary (1985-1991), Chair of the Supreme Soviet (1989-1990)

1932 – Frank E. Petersen Jr. born, the first black Marine Corps aviator and first African American Marine Corps general

1933 – The motion picture King Kong had its world premiere in New York City

1941 – David Satcher born, African American physician and public health administrator; U.S. Surgeon General (1998-2001)

1946 – Ho Chi Minh is elected President of Vietnam

1948 – Carmen Lawrence born, Australian psychologist and Labor politician; elected to the Parliament of Western Australia in 1986, and became a government minister in 1988; Premier of Western Australia (1990-1993), Australia’s first woman state premier; Member of the national Australian Parliament for Fremantle (1994-2007); served 1994-1996 as both Minister for Human Services and Health and Minister for Women. Elected as national president of the Labor Party (2004-2005)

1949 – The B-50 Superfortress Lucky Lady II lands in Fort Worth TX, completing the first non-stop around-the-world flight

1955 – Egypt and Syria sign a defensive alliance

1956 – France recognizes the independence of Morocco

1959 – The first of two recording sessions by Miles Davis for the album Kind of Blue

1961 – Simone M. Young born, Australian conductor; first woman conductor at the Vienna State Opera (1993); the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra in Norway (1998-2002), Opera Australia in Sydney (2001-2003); Hamburg State Opera (2005-2015)

1964 – The Beatles release “Twist and Shout” in the U.S., and begin work on their first film, A Hard Day’s Night

1965 – The movie of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “The Sound of Music” premieres

1966 – Ann Leckie born, American author and editor of science fiction and fantasy; her 2013 debut novel Ancillary Justice won the both the Hugo and Nebula Awards for Best Novel, the British Science Fiction Association Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, and the Locus Award for Best First Novel. The sequels Ancillary Sword and Ancillary Mercy each won Locus Awards for Best Science Fiction Novel and were nominated for Nebula Awards

1969 – In Toulouse, France, the supersonic transport Concorde makes its first test flight

1974 – U.S. Postage: first class stamps jump from 8 to 10 cents

1980 – Rebel Wilson born, Australian writer, producer, actress and singer; she wrote, produced and starred in the 2008 musical comedy series Bogan Pride; best know in the U.S. for the movies Bridesmaids and Pitch Perfect; Wilson is a supporter of stricter gun laws in the U.S., “I don’t like getting political but America you really have to follow Australia’s example re gun laws. I don’t remember a mass shooting in Australia since they overhauled the gun laws. It seems like every week in America there’s a shooting. I just want people to be safe, especially people that are doing one of my favorite things in the world—going out to the movies to have fun.”

1983 – The U.S.S.R. performs an underground nuclear test

1985 – U.S. government approves a screening test for AIDS that detects antibodies to the virus that prevents possibly contaminated blood from tainting the U.S. blood supply.

1986 – Corazon Aquino is sworn into office as president of the Philippines; her first public declaration restores the civil rights of the citizens of her country

1987 – The U.S. government reports that the median price for a new home had gone over $100,000 for the first time

1987 – Ladysmith Black Mambazo becomes the first South African group to win a Grammy award, for Best Traditional Folk Album

1989 – Representatives from the twelve European Community nations agree to ban all production of CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) by the end of the 20th century

1995 – Russian anti-corruption journalist Vladislav Listyev is assassinated by a gunman in Moscow

1995 – Nick Leeson is arrested for his role in the collapse of Britain’s Barings Bank

1998 – The first NEA’s Read Across America Day * – a National Education Association initiative held annually on the nearest weekday to the birthday of Dr. Seuss, to encourage and celebrate reading

1998 – The U.N. Security Council endorses U.N. chief Kofi Annan’s deal to open Iraq’s presidential palaces to arms inspectors

1998 – Images from the American spacecraft Galileo show the Jupiter moon Europa has a liquid ocean and interior heat source

2004 – NASA announces that the Mars rover Opportunity has discovered evidence that water existed on Mars in the past

2011 – The Supreme Court rules 8-1 that members of the fundamentalist Westboro Baptist Church have a First Amendment right to picket the funeral of a Marine

2011 – Quincy Jones receives the National Medal of Arts; he already held a record of 79 Grammy nominations, and 27 Grammy wins, including a 1991 Grammy Legend Award

2016 – National Speech & Debate Education Day * sponsored by the National Speech & Debate Association, is first declared by a resolution of the U.S. Senate

2017 – The elements Moscovium, Tennessine, and Oganesson are officially added to the periodic table at a conference in Moscow


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: March 2, 2019

  1. Malisha says:

    We should now add the element Trumponium.
    It is made of nothing; it is fake.

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