ON THIS DAY: April 16, 2019

April 16th is

Eggs Benedict Day

National Bean Counter Day

National Orchid Day *

Save The Elephant Day *

World Voice Day *


MORE! Mary Alexander,  José de Diego and Tracy K. Smith, click



Denmark and Greenland –
Queen Margrethe II’s Birthday

France – Abbeville: Bird and Nature Festival
(through April 22)

Hungary –
Holocaust Victims Memorial Day

Puerto Rico – José de Diego Holiday
(Puerto Rico Independence Movement leader)

Washington DC: D.C. Emancipation Day
(The Compensated Emancipation Act)


On This Day in HISTORY

1457 BCE (date uncertain) – Battle of Megiddo, a victory for the forces of  Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmose III over a coalition of Canaanite vassal states in rebellion, led by the king of Kaddesh, followed by the seven-month siege of the fortress city of Megiddo. The area is southeast of Haifa, in modern-day Israel. Its Greek name is Armageddon

Tel Megiddo, Israel – a Biblical World Heritage Site

73 or 74 CE – The walls of Masada, a Jewish fortress held by the Sicarii (the most implacable of the Zealots who were in rebellion) are finally breached by the Roman legion led by Roman governor of Judaea, Lucius Flavius Silva, after months of siege. They find hundreds of men, women and children killed in a mass suicide amid fires set to destroy the buildings. Only two women and five children are found still alive

1516 – Tabinshwehti, King of Burma, is born, founder of the Toungoo Dynasty; his military campaigns expanded the kingdom

1646 – Jules Hardouin-Mansart, French architect, designed the Grand Trianon

1660 – Hans Sloane born in Ireland, British naturalist who bequeathed his collection to the nation, the foundation of the British Museum

1693 – Mary Alexander born, American colonial merchant, successful and influential; she married twice and had ten children; her fortune was estimated at 100,000 pounds in 1743

1746 – The Battle of Culloden is fought between the French-supported Jacobites of Prince Charles Edward Stuart and the British Hanoverian forces commanded by William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland, in Scotland, the last pitched battle fought on British soil. Between 1,500 and 2,000 Jacobites died, and roughly 200-300 English. Two days after the battle, English troops kill any wounded they find. Prisoners are tried for high treason, but nearly 1,000 sentences are commuted to penal transportation to the British colonies for life, and some are exchanged for prisoners of war held by France. Of the 3,471 recorded prisoners, the fate of 648 is unknown. Lords and Clans chiefs who supported the rebellion are stripped of their estates. Many highland traditions are banned, including the wearing of tartan, the clan chiefs’ traditional judicial rights, and the Highlands of Scotland are cleared of inhabitants

Highland Charge on Barrell’s Regiment: Battle of Culloden 16th April 1746 in the Jacobite Rebellion –
painted by David Morier, using Highland prisoners as models

1755 – Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun born, French painter, major 18th century woman painter; portrait painter to Marie Antoinette; Le Brun painted some 660 portraits and 200 landscapes

Self-Portrait by Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun

1780 – The University of Münster is founded in that city of North Rhine-Wesphalia in Germany, with four faculties: Law, Medicine, Philosophy and Theology

1789 – President-elect George Washington leaves Mount Vernon for his inauguration in New York

1811 – Wilhelmine Reichard becomes the first German woman to fly a balloon solo. Starting in Berlin, she reached a height of over 5,000 metres (16,000 ft) and landed safely in Genshagen, 33.5 kilometres (20.8 mi) from her starting point. This was not the first solo flight by a woman in Germany; the Frenchwoman Sophie Blanchard had made a flight in September 1810, starting from Frankfurt. Reichard’s third flight in 1811 reached a height of approximately 7,800 metres (25,600 ft). Due to the altitude she lost consciousness and her balloon crash-landed in a forest; badly injured, she was rescued by local farmers

1818 – U.S. Senate ratifies the Rush-Bagot Treaty, ending the dispute over the U.S. border with Canada

1844 – Anatole France born, French novelist and poet; La Révolte des anges 

1847 – The accidental shooting of a Māori by an English sailor results in the opening of the Wanganui Campaign on the North Island during the New Zealand land wars

1848 – Kandukuri Veeresalingam Pantulu born, Indian social reformer and author; campaigned for women’s education, the remarriage of widows, an end to the dowry system, and founded a school in Dowlaiswaram; his novel Rajasekhara Charitramu is cited as the first novel in Telugu literature

1853 – The first section of the Great Indian Peninsular Railway opens, with 24 miles of rail from the Bori Bunder station to Tannah (now Thane), near Mumbai

1862 – Abraham Lincoln signs into law the Compensated Emancipation Act, freeing 3,000 slaves in the District of Columbia, paying $300 per emancipated person to the former slaveowners

1864 – Rose Talbot Bullard born, American physician and medical school professor. Bullard earned her medical degree at the Women’s Hospital Medical College in Chicago, where she graduated at the top of her class in 1886. Her sister Lula Talbot Ellis was also a physician, and the first woman to graduate from the medical school at the University of Southern California in 1888. She shared a medical practice with Elizabeth Follansbee. In her work with women patients, Bullard advocated outdoor activity, especially bicycling, which she believed came with other benefits for women. “The bicycle has done more for the cause of legitimate dress reform than any other single agent,” she declared in 1895. She taught gynecology at the University of Southern California, and was one of the first officers of the YWCA of Los Angeles, when it formed in 1893. Bullard was the first woman elected as president of the Los Angeles County Medical Association in 1902 (and there wasn’t another woman president of the association until 1992). She was also a fellow of the American College of Surgeons, one of only eight women elected to that status when the it was founded in 1912. In her obstetric practice, she was among the first in Southern California to use spinal anesthesia. When the American Medical Association established a Public Health Education Committee in 1909, Bullard was one of the ten physicians appointed to the committee, and the only one from Los Angeles. The Women Physicians Action Committee of the Los Angeles County Medical Association gives an annual Rose Talbot Bullard Award for a woman physician who is a “champion and trailblazer”

1866 – José de Diego born, Puerto Rican journalist, lawyer, poet, and independence activist; called “The Father of the Puerto Rican Independence Movement”

1867 – Wilbur Wright born, American inventor, aviator and aviation pioneer

1871 – John Millington Synge born, Irish author, poet, and playwright

1879 – The first Bulgarian constitution is adopted by the Constituent National Assembly held in Veliko Tarnovo,  establishing the Principality of Bulgaria

1881 – In Dodge City KS, Bat Masterson’s last gun battle

1882 – Seth Bingham born, American composer and organist

1889 – Charlie Chaplin born in England, international movie star, director-producer, screenwriter and composer

1890 – Gertrude Chandler Warner born, American author; series Boxcar Children 

1891 – Dorothy Pulis Lathrop born, American illustrator and author of children’s books; illustrated Hitty, Her First Hundred Years, by Rachel Field, which won the 1930 Newbery Medal

D.P. Lathrop illustration for Tales From the Enchanted Isles by Ethel May Gate (1926)

1893 – Germaine Guèvremont born, Canadian writer, notable figure in Quebec French-language literature; En plein terre, Le Survenant, Marie-Didace

1908 – Natural Bridges National Monument is established in Utah

1912 – Harriet Quimby is the first woman to fly an airplane across the English Channel

1917 – Vladimir Lenin returns to Russia from exile in Switzerland

1918 – Spike Milligan born in British India, Irish-English comedian, writer, musician, poet, playwright and actor

1919 – Merce Cunningham born, American dancer and choreographer

1919 – Mohandas Gandhi organizes a day of “prayer and fasting” in response to the killing of Indian protesters in the Jallianwala Bagh massacre by the British colonial troops three days earlier

1921 – Marie Maynard Daly born, American biochemist, first black woman to earn a PhD in chemistry, discovered the link between high cholesterol and clogged arteries

1922 – The Treaty of Rapallo is signed, re-establishing  diplomatic relations between Germany and the Soviet Union

1924 – Henry Mancini born, American composer and conductor; noted for his filmscores; nominated for 53 Academy Awards, won 24 times

1930 – Herbie Mann born, American composer and flute-player

1933 – Baroness Joan Bakewell born, English television journalist-presenter playwright, author and humanist; President of Birkbeck, University of London; The Centre of the Bed is her autobiography

1935 – Sarah Kirsch born as Ingrid Kirsch, but changed her given name to Sarah in protest against her father’s anti-Semitism; German poet and author

1939 – Dusty Springfield born, English singer and record producer

1940 – Joan Snyder born, American painter

1943 – Albert Hofmann accidentally discovers the hallucinogenic effects of the research drug LSD, then intentionally takes the drug three days later on April 19

1945 – U.S. Army liberates Colditz, the Nazi Sonderlager (high security) prisoner-of-war camp Oflag IV-C

1946 – R. Carlos Nakai born, Native American flute player and composer

1946 – Margot Adler born, American writer, lecturer and NY correspondent for National Public Radio; noted author of books on Neopaganism: Drawing Down the Moon, and Heretic’s Heart: A Journey Through Spirit and Revolution

1947 – Bernard Baruch first applies the term “Cold War” to describe the relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union: “Let us not be deceived. We are today in the midst of a cold war”

1956 – Buddy Holly releases his first single, “Blue Days, Black Nights”

1957 – Patricia De Martelaere born in Belgium, Flemish philosopher, academic, novelist and essayist; wrote her first book at age 14, King of the Jungle; her first adult novel was Nachtboek van een slapeloze (Night Book of an Insomniac); in non-fiction, she wrote Het onverwachte antwoord (The Unexpected Answer); De Martelaere died of complications from a brain tumor in 2009

1961 – In a nationally broadcast speech, Cuban leader Fidel Castro declares that he is a Marxist–Leninist and that Cuba is going to adopt Communism.

1962 – Bob Dylan debuts his song “Blowin’ in the Wind” in New York City

1963 – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. pens his Letter from Birmingham Jail while incarcerated in Birmingham, Alabama, for protesting against segregation

1962 – Walter Cronkite takes over as anchor of “The CBS Evening News”

1966 – The Rolling Stones, the band’s debut album, is released

1966 – Percy Sledge’s “When A Man Loves A Woman” is released

1972 – Apollo 16 is launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida

1972 – Tracy K. Smith born, American poet; Poet Laureate of the United States (2017-2019); recipient of the 2002 Cave Canem Prize, the 2006 James Laughlin Prize, and the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for Life on Mars. Her next collection, Ordinary Light, was shortlisted for a National Book Award. Smith has also contributed to numerous anthologies

1990 – Over 72,000 people gather at London’s Wembley Stadium for an anti-apartheid concert honoring Nelson Mandela, shortly after his release from prison

1990 –Dr. Jack Kevorkian participates in his first assisted suicide

1992 – The Katina P runs aground off Maputo, Mozambique and 60,000 tons of crude oil spill into the ocean

1999 – World Voice Day * started as Brazilian National Voice Day, an initiative started by members of the Brazilian Academy of Laryngology and Voice, and has since grown into a celebration of the human voice in 50 countries

2001 – India and Bangladesh begin a five-day border conflict, but are unable to resolve the disputes over their border

2002 – U.N. Secretary-General names primatologist Jane Goodall as a United Nations Messenger of Peace

2003 – The Treaty of Accession is signed in Athens admitting ten new member states to the European Union

2012 – No Pulitzer Prize for Fiction Prize for this year, something which last happened in 1977, and the fifth time no prize for fiction was awarded since its debut in 1918

2012 – Save The Elephant Day * is launched by the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation, to coincide with the documentary about their work, Return to the Forest, and an annual reminder of threatened extinction facing these magnificent mammals

2014 – Mike and Faith Young, volunteers at the San Cristobal de las Casas Orchid Reserve in Chiapas, Mexico, wanted to name their first daughter Orchid, but the baby was stillborn, so they founded National Orchid Day * to honor her memory and celebrate the flowers they love

2014 – The Supreme Court of India recognizes transgender as a “third gender” in a landmark ruling

2016 – The U.S. army approves requests by 22 soldiers to become the first American women infantry and armor unit officers, 13 in the armor branch, and nine as second lieutenants in the infantry


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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4 Responses to ON THIS DAY: April 16, 2019

  1. Malisha says:

    I love this clip of Merce Cunningham:

    I saw his dance company perform once, live. Very exciting.

  2. Malisha says:

    Wow Herbie Mann and Merce Cunningham had the same birthday?

  3. Malisha says:

    AND Carlos Nakai?!! It’s a rich day!

  4. wordcloud9 says:

    Hi Malisha –

    It is indeed a rich day – thank you for the additions!

Comments are closed.