ON THIS DAY: October 27, 2019

October 27th is

American Beer Day *

Black Cat Day *

(U.S.) Navy Day *

Sylvia Plath Day *

World Day for Audiovisual Heritage *

International Religious Freedom Day


MORE! Mary Moser, Oliver Tambo and Ruby Dee, click



Brazil – São Paulo:
Dark Dimensions Folk Festival

Greece – Flag Day

Ireland – Dublin: Samhain

Italy – Bologna: Gender Bender Festival

Japan – Beppu: Tenku Festival
(Autumn cultural and food festival)

Kenya – Nairobi: Diwali Celebration

Mexico – San Miguel de Allende: La Calaca
Festival (skeleton/Day of the Dead)

Netherlands – Amsterdam: Festival of the Dead

New Zealand – Nelson: Nelson Arts Festival

Nigeria – Kano: Indigenous
Languages of Africa Film Market

Pakistan – Karachi: World of Carnivals

Philippines –Bacolod: MassKara Festival

Saint Vincent & Grenadines – Independence Day

Slovakia – Černovská tragédia *
(1907 – police kill demonstrators)

Turkmenistan – Independence Day


On This Day in HISTORY

710 – The Saracens from North Africa increase their harassment of the southern coastal cities of Sardinia, causing several long-inhabited towns to be abandoned for greater safety, the people either moving inland or to the northern part of the island

939 – Æthelstan, England’s first king, dies; succeeded by his half-brother, Edmund I

Edmund I in the late 13th-century Genealogical Chronicle of the English Kings

1275 – Traditional date of the founding of the city of Amsterdam in the Low Countries – it was granted city rights, including the right to build defensive walls, to hold markets, and receive the income from them, the right to charge tolls, to mint coins, to levy taxes, and to create an official weighing system for cargo, farm products and trade goods. City citizens were not subject to a liege lord or restricted in travel – an old Dutch saying: “Stadslucht maakt vrij” which translates ‘City air makes free’ reflects these rights

Map of Amsterdam circa 1700

1335 – King Taejo of Joseon born, first king and founder of the Joseon dynasty of Korea, the main figure in the overthrow of the Goryeo dynasty, who reigned from 1392 to 1398

1553 – Spanish polymath (physician, scientist, mathematician, theologian and cartographer among many avocations) Michael Servetus is tried in Geneva and burnt at the stake with his books, for heresy on 40 different charges, but primarily because he denied the Trinity and was against infant baptism. Although Servetus was condemned by the Geneva Council of 25, the main evidence against him was provided by John Calvin and his followers

1561 – Mary Sidney born, Countess of Pembroke; English poet, playwright, patron and translator, first Englishwoman to achieve a major reputation for her poetry; sister of Philip Sidney; noted for her play, Antonius, and her lyric translation of Psalms 44-150, completing work begun by her brother. Her ‘Wilton Circle,’ a literary salon at her home, Wilton House, was a gathering place for some of the best poets and writers of the day, and she was a patron who sustained several promising poets early in their careers. She also had a chemistry laboratory, where she developed invisible ink and medicines. She died of smallpox in 1621, at age 59

1632 (? – exact date unconfirmed) – First North American commercial brewery is opened by the West India Company on a street that was re-named Brouwers (Brewers) Street in New Amsterdam

1659 – William Robinson and Marmaduke Stevenson became the first Quakers to be executed in America

1682 – Philadelphia, PA is founded by William Penn, under royal charter granted by Charles II of England, after the land had by turns been claimed the Dutch, Swedes and Finns, and the English – Penn did make a treaty, which included some payment for the land,  with the Lenape at Shackamaxon, under an elm tree

1744 – Mary Moser born, English painter and academic; she and Angelica Kauffman are the only women who were founding members of the Royal Academy; noted for her flower paintings

Vase of Flowers by Mary Moser

1765 – Nancy Storace born, English operatic soprano, the role of Susanna in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro was written for and first performed by her

1782 – Niccoló Paganini born, celebrated Italian violin virtuoso and composer

1787 – The first Federalist Papers are published in the New York Independent. The series of 85 essays, written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay, were published under the pen name “Publius”

1795 – The U.S. and Spain sign the Treaty of  Madrid, establishing boundaries between Spanish colonies and the U.S.

1806 – Juan Seguín born, served as an officer in the Texian Army during the Texas Revolution, which was sparked by Santa Anna’s repeal of the Mexican Constitution of 1824; Republic of Texas senator (1837-1840); mayor of San Antonio (1841-1842); Bexar County Justice of the Peace (1852-1869); Wilson County Judge (1869)

1808 – Louis of Mauritius starts a slave rebellion, leading over 300 slaves and Khoi Khoi servants from outlying farms on a march to Cape Town to demand their freedom, but the Governor of the Cape calls out Infantry and Cavalry to lay a trap for them at the Salt River, just outside the city, and the marchers tried to flee. 326 of them were captured by the dragoons, and 47 of them were put on trial. Louis of Mauritius and nine others were hanged for treason, and another 11 were sentenced to death for “active participation.” Many of the others were sentenced to imprisonment on Robben Island

1810 – U.S. annexes the former Spanish colony of West Florida

1811 – Isaac Singer born, founder of the Singer Sewing Machine Company

1838 – In the aftermath of the Battle of Crooked River in the “Missouri Mormon War” in NW Missouri, Missouri governor Lilburn Boggs issues Extermination Order 44, which orders all Mormons to leave the state or be exterminated. Joseph Smith’s followers moved to Missouri because their prophet had told them: “If ye are faithful, ye shall assemble yourselves together to rejoice upon the land of Missouri, which is the land of your inheritance, which is now the land of your enemies.”

1858 – Theodore Roosevelt born, 26th U.S. President, outdoorsman, hunting-mad slaughterer of animals but wilderness conservationist; author; reformer and trustbuster; an expansionist and warmonger who won the 1906 Nobel Peace Prize for the peace treaties he negotiated

1885 – Sigrid Hjertén born, major Swedish modernist painter,  She was encouraged by her future husband, Isaac Grünewald, to go to Paris, where she studied with Matisse (1909-1911). Some of her paintings were first exhibited in a group show in Stockholm in 1912.  She and her family lived in Paris between 1920 and 1932, and made many excursions into the French countryside and to Italy for painting, but in the late 1920s, Hjertén began to experience the first symptoms of schizophrenia. She complained of loneliness when her husband was away, and feelings of abandonment. She was returning to Stockholm in 1932 when she collapsed, and was taken temporarily to the psychiatric hospital of Beckomberga. Over the next two years, she painted frenziedly, creating a painting a day, calling them the picture-book of her life. In 1934, she went with her family to southern Europe, continuing to paint. A joint exhibition with Grünewald stirred controversy, and many of the critics wrote scornful or deeply offensive reviews, some calling her work idiocy or horrors. But in 1936, she had a well-received solo exhibition at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts, and she was honored as one of Sweden’s most original artists. Then Grünewald, who had been frequently unfaithful, divorced her. Her illness escalated. By 1938, she was permanently hospitalized at Beckomberga, and painted very little. In 1948, she died following a botched lobotomy

Ateljéinteriör by Sigrid Hjertén – 1916

1904 – First underground New York City Subway line opens; the system becomes the biggest in United States

1907 – Černovská tragédia * – A church built in the Slovak town of Černová was ready to be dedicated. It had been built with funds raised by the local community and inspired by Catholic priest Andrej Hlinka, who was born in the village, but was serving a nearby parish. The townspeople wanted the church to be dedicated by Hlinka, but he was under suspension by his bishop because he was sentenced to imprisonment for his pro-Slovak campaigning during the 1906 election. The bishop denied their request and sent two Magyar-speaking priests with an official procession, which included a squad of 15 gendarmes. The locals attempted to block the procession, there was some pushing and shoving, but the sergeant in charge of the squad panicked, and ordered his men to open fire on the crowd with no prior warning. They killed 15 of the villagers, seriously wounded 12 others, and an additional 40 were lightly injured.  The tragedy sparked protests in the European and U.S. press and highlighted the tensions with minorities in Hungary. Hlinka began serving his prison sentence in 1907, but appealed his suspension as a priest to the Pope, and was restored in 1909. After Hlinka completed his prison term, he returned to his parish, and then consecrated the Černovská church

1908 – Lee Krasner born, American abstract expressionist painter; although overshadowed by her husband, Jackson Pollack, she is one of only four women artists to have a retrospective show at the Museum of Modern Art

Right Bird Left, by Lee Krasner – 1965

1910 – Margaret Hutchinson Rousseau born, American chemical engineer; designer of the first commercial penicillin production plant; first woman member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers

1913 – Joe Medicine Crow, American anthropologist, historian, and author; authority of the Battle of the Little Big Horn; recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009

1914 – Dylan Thomas born, notable Welsh poet and playwright

1917 – Oliver Tambo – South African lawyer and anti-apartheid activist; President of the African National Congress (ANC – 1967-1991); in 1958, he became the ANC’s Deputy President, and in 1959, was served with a 5-year banning order, and went abroad to mobilize international opposition to apartheid, traveling frequently, but living in London with his family. He became the Acting President of the ANC in 1967 when Chief Albert Lutuli died, and finally returned to South Africa in 1990 to become the National Chair of the ANC. He died of a stroke in 1993

1922 – The Navy League of the United States organizes the first Navy Day *  – October 27 was chosen because it is the birthday of President Theodore Roosevelt, who had been an Assistant Secretary of the Navy and supported a strong Navy. It’s also the anniversary of a 1775 report issued by a Continental Congress special committee favoring the purchase of merchant ships as the foundation of an American Navy

Navy Day 1945 poster

1922 –Ruby Dee born, American actress, poet, playwright, and civil rights activist; the first to portray the character of Ruth in A Raisin in the Sun, both on stage and in the 1961 film; Grammy, Emmy, and Obie winner

1924 – Uzbek becomes Soviet Uzbekistan, a republic of the Soviet Union

1925 – Monica Sims born, British radio producer for the BBC, became a strong advocate for quality in children’s television as BBC television’s head of Children’s Programmes (1967-1979); Controller of BBC Radio 4 (1978-1983); in 1985, she produced the report Women in BBC Management which showed the number of women in top jobs was virtually the same as it had been a decade before: 6 women compared with 159 men. The report concluded with 19 recommendations, including appointment of a women’s employment officer; more career guidance for both women and men; a review of the Appointments Board policy for senior posts; increasing the number of women attending Management Training Courses, and the introduction of women-only courses as an experiment. She also recommended part-time work, job sharing and other options for flexible working schedules

1925 – The first newsreel featuring sound is released in New York

1931 – Nawal El Saadawi born, Egyptian feminist, physician and author; founder and first president of the Arab Women’s Solidarity Association and co-founder of Arab Association for Human Rights; her 1972 book, Woman and Sex (المرأة والجنس), which confronted aggression against women, including female circumcision, became a foundational text of second-wave feminism, especially in the Middle East and Africa. El Saadawi was imprisoned for her controversial and “dangerous” views in 1981, but released a month after Anwar Sadat’s assassination

1932 – Sylvia Plath * born in Boston Massachusetts, American poet and author; best known for her book, The Bell Jar, and her poetry collection, Ariel; the first person to win the Pulitzer Prize posthumously (1982)

1932 – Dolores Moore born, played in the infield for the Grand Rapids Chicks (1953-1954); her team won the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Championship that year, the last season for the league

1936 – Wallis Simpson files for divorce from her second husband – her affair with Edward VIII and his proposal of marriage to her created a constitutional crisis in Great Britain that ended with his abdication

1936 – Neil Sheehan born, American journalist and author; his articles on the Pentagon Papers in the NY Times set off a political firestorm; his book on Vietnam,  A Bright Shining Lie, won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award

1938 – Du Pont announced “nylon” as the new name for its new synthetic yarn

1939 – John Cleese born, English actor, comedian, screenwriter and producer; co-founder of Monty Python

1939 – Suzy Covey born, comics scholar and musician who examined the intersections of comics, technology, and sound, working with computers in the early days of the internet; noted for her comic book collections

1939 – Maxine Hong Kingston born, American author whose novels and non-fiction works chronicle the experiences of Chinese Americans; noted for The Woman Warrior and China Men, which won the 1981 National Book Award for Nonfiction

1944 – J.A. Jance born as Judith Ann Jance, American mystery novelist and poet; noted for three series, which sometimes intersect: J.P. Beaumont, Joanna Brady and Ali Reynolds

1947 – You Bet Your Life, the radio show starring Grouch Marx, premieres on ABC-radio

1950 – Fran Lebowitz born, American author and public speaker, known for her sardonic social commentary; Metropolitan Life

1954 – Jan Duursema born, American comics artist who has worked for DC Comics, on Wonder Woman among other projects, and on publications for the Star Wars franchise

1955 – Deborah Bowen born, politician; California Secretary of State (2007-2015); California State Senator (D-28th District 1998-2006); campaigned for a transparency bill which makes all of California’s bill information available on the internet; as Secretary of State, commissioned a top-to-bottom review of California’s electronic voting systems, which revealed numerous weaknesses, for which she was awarded the Profile in Courage Award by the JFK Presidential Library

1960 – Ben E. King records his first solo songs, “Spanish Harlem” and “Stand By Me”

1962 – USAF Major Rudolf Anderson dies during the Cuban Missile Crisis when his U-2 is shot down over Cuba by a Soviet-made SA-2 surface-to-air missile

1964 – Ronald Reagan delivers a speech on behalf of Barry Goldwater dubbed “A Time for Choosing” which launches his political career

1965 – Brazilian president Humberto de Alencar Castelo Branco removes power from parliament, legal courts and opposition parties.

1966 – Hege Nerland born, Norwegian Socialist Left Party politician; deputy representative to the Norwegian Parliament (2005-2006), but died in 2007

1967 – Father Philip Berrigan, founder of the Catholic Peace Fellowship, with the other ‘Baltimore Four’ occupy the Selective Service Board office and pour chicken blood mixed with their own blood over records to protest “the pitiful waste of American and Vietnamese blood in Indochina”

Baltimore Four: David Eberhardt, Tom Lewis, Rev Jim Mengel and Father Philip Berrigan

1971 – Three-Z Naming Day * – President Mobutu Sese Seko of the Democratic Republic of the Congo changes the country’s name to Zaire, changes the Congo River to the Zaire River, and the nation’s money from franc congolais to the zaire, but he is such a terrible despot that he is overthrown in 1997, and the country goes back to being the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the money is again the Congolese franc, and the river is the Congo once more

1986 – British ‘Big Bang’ begins when the government suddenly deregulates financial markets, leading to a total restructuring of the way British financial markets operate

1988 – President Reagan orders the new U.S. Embassy in Moscow to be torn down because of Soviet listening devices in the building structure

1992 – U.S. Navy radioman Allen R. Schindler, Jr. is brutally murdered by a shipmate for being gay, precipitating first military, then national, debate about gays in the military resulting in the U.S. military “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy

1992 – Emily Hagins born, American filmmaker who made her first movie at age 12 in her hometown of Austin, Texas – a zombie movie called Pathogen, and has since made five more movies

1994 – Gliese 229B,  a red dwarf about 19 light years away in the constellation Lepus, has 58% of the mass of our Sun; Gliese 229B is the first Substellar Mass Object to be unquestionably identified

1998 – The first International Religious Freedom Day * which marks the U.S. passage of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998

2005 – The first World Day for Audiovisual Heritage * is declared by the U.N. to encourage  preservation of radio and television programmes and motion pictures as a record of our common heritage, in conjunction with the UNESCO programme, Memory of the World

2009 – Justin Smith starts American Beer Day * to commemorate the signing by FDR of the Cullen-Harrison Act, which effectively ended Prohibition. FDR reportedly said after signing:  “I think this would be a good time for a beer.”

2010 – Cats Protection, the U.K. largest feline welfare charity, starts Black Cat Day * to debunk the superstitions surrounding black cats, to protect them from being abused or killed during Halloween week, and to help black cats in shelters find their forever homes

2014 – Britain withdraws from Afghanistan, ending Operation Herrick (codename for all British operations in the War in Afghanistan from 2002 until 2014), part of the NATO-led International Security Force and in support of American-led Operation Enduring Freedom

2017 – Catalonia’s parliament voted to declare independence from Spain, marking a major escalation of ongoing tensions between Madrid and the autonomous region since Catalan citizens overwhelmingly voted for independence earlier this month, and Spanish courts labeled the vote illegal. The Spanish government immediately responded by approving Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s request for direct rule over Catalonia. Rajoy refused to explore conversations about Catalonia’s potential secession, and on Friday he claimed there was “no alternative” to the national takeover 


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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