ON THIS DAY: January 14, 2020

January 14th is

International Kite Day

Hot Pastrami Sandwich Day

National Ratification Day *

Organize Your Home Day


MORE! Berthe Morisot, Judas Mahlangu and Anchee Min, click



Abkhazia – Azhirnikhua
(day of world’s creation)

Bosnia & Herzegovina – Orthodox (Old) New Year

Canada – Sherbrook: University Arts Festival

France – Valloire: Ice Sculpture Contest

Germany – Bochum: St. Petersburg Festival Ballet

India and Nepal – Makar/Maghe Sankranti
(Hindu sun transit/harvest festival)

Ireland – Dublin:  First Fortnight Festival

New Zealand – Christchurch: Sports Festival
(football, tennis and cricket instruction)

Saudi Arabia – Abqaiq:
Abqaiq Desert Safari Festival

Serbia – Orthodox New Year

Sri Lanka – Tamil Thai Pongal Day
(harvest thanksgiving, new beginnings)

Thailand – Forest Conservation Day

Tunisia – Revolution and Youth Day

Uganda – Murchison Falls National Park:
Red Chilli and Safari Tour


On This Day in HISTORY

83 BC – Marc Antony born, Roman general and politician, who paid a critical role in the transformation of the Roman Republic into the autocratic Roman Empire

1273 – Joan I of Navarre, Queen Regnant of Navarre and Countess of Champagne (1274-1305), Queen Consort of France (1305); though she was Queen Regnant of Navarre, her marriage at the age of 11 to Philip the Fair, who became Philip IV, King of France in 1285, meant that she never spent time in Navarre, and it was ruled by French governors appointed by her husband, who were unpopular in Navarre, She was much more active as countess of Champagne, since it was not a separate kingdom, but part of France, and she had more latitude to act as its ruling vassal under the king. On 1297, it was Joan who raised and led an army to defeat the Count of Bar when he rebelled against her and invaded Champagne.  She and her escort brought the Count to prison before she rejoined her spouse. She also acted directly against Bishop Guichard of Troyes, whom she accused of stealing funds by fraud from both Champagne and her mother, Blanche of Artois. Joan gave birth to seven children, four of whom lived to adulthood, the others dying at ages four, seven and eleven. Joan died in 1305, probably either because of a miscarriage or in childbirth, at the age of 32. Bishop Guichard was arrested in 1308, accused of killing Joan by “witchcraft,” but he was released in 1313

1301 – Andrew III of Hungary dies, ending the Hungarian Árpád dynasty; Wenceslaus III of Bohemia, betrothed to Andrew’s only daughter Elizabeth, is elected King of Hungary by the majority of Hungarian lords and prelates

1539 – Spain annexes Cuba

1507 – Catherine of Austria, Queen consort of Portugal (1525-1557) and regent during the minority of her grandson King Sebastian (1557-1562).  Catherine was very concerned about the education of her family, creating a substantial library and establishing a kind of salon in the court. She brought a number of women scholars into her household, including the humanists Joana Vaz and Públia Hortênsia de Castro, and the poet Luisa Sigea de Velasco.  Joana Vaz was responsible for tutoring Catherine’s daughter, Princess Maria, as well as Catherine’s niece, also called Maria, and a scholar in her own right. Catherine had one of the earliest and finest Chinese porcelain collections in Europe. She also collected ‘exotica’ including  fossilised sharks’ teeth, a snake’s head encased in gold, heart-shaped jasper stones supposed to stop bleeding, a coral branch used as a protector against evil spirits, bezoar stones, and a unicorn’s horn (a narwhal  tusk).  After the death of her husband in 1557, she was challenged by her daughter-in-law and niece,  Joan of Austria, over the role of regent for her grandchild, the infant King Sebastian. Mediation by Charles V resolved the issue in favor of his sister Catherine over his daughter Joan, who was needed in Spain in the absence of Philip II

1639 – The “Fundamental Orders,” sometimes considered the first written constitution that created a government, are adopted in Connecticut; the orders state that government is founded on the rights of individuals, including the right of all free men to share in electing their magistrates, and to use secret, paper ballots

1683 – Gottfried Silbermann born, German master craftsman, maker of keyboard instruments, including harpsichords, clavichords, and organs, but remembered primarily for his fortepianos, and inventing the forerunner of the damper pedal. Frederick the Great bought a number of Silbermann’s pianos, two of which are still in Frederick’s palaces in Potsdam today, noted for their plain but elegant design

1702 – Emperor Nakamikado of Japan born; the throne was passed to him at the age of seven by his father when he abdicated in 1709, but his father and grandfather were regents until he reached his majority; he in turn abdicated in favor of his 15-year-old son (Emperor Sakuramachi) in 1735, but continued to exercise imperial powers until he died in 1737

1741 – Benedict Arnold born, American Revolutionary War officer and turncoat

1780 – François Joseph Dizi born, South Netherlands harpist-composer

1784 – The Treaty of Paris is ratified at the Maryland State House, officially ending the American Revolutionary War – celebrated in the U.S. as National Ratification Day *

1841 – Berthe Morisot born, French painter; one of “les trois grandes dames” of Impressionism with Marie Bracquemond and Mary Cassatt. In 1890, Morisot wrote in a notebook about her struggles to be taken seriously as an artist: “I don’t think there has ever been a man who treated a woman as an equal and that’s all I would have asked for, for I know I’m worth as much as they.” She always exhibited her work under her maiden name, instead of as the wife of Eugène Manet, or under a pseudonym. Morisot’s work found an audience when the private dealer, Paul Durand-Ruel, bought 22 of her paintings in the 1870s. She died in 1895, at age 54, from pneumonia contracted while nursing her daughter Julie, who survived the illness, but became an orphan at the age of 16

Summer Day, by Berthe Morisot

1873 – John Hyatt’s 1869 invention ‘Celluloid’ is registered as a trademark

1875 – Albert Schweitzer born, Alsatian-German doctor and humanitarian who receives the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize

1878 – Alexander Graham Bell demonstrated the telephone for Britain’s Queen Victoria

1886 – Hugh Lofting born, English author of the Doctor Dolittle books



1896 – John Dos Passos born, American writer-journalist

1900 – Puccini’s opera Tosca has its world premiere in Rome

1904 – Sir Cecil Beaton born, British-American photographer and designer

1905 – Emily Hahn born, American journalist, author, biographer and feminist; her loves of travel and animals greatly influenced her work, a significant chronicle of Asia and Africa in the 1930s and 40s for Western readers

1911 – Roald Amundsen’s South Pole expedition makes landfall on the eastern edge of the Ross Ice Shelf

1912 – Tillie Ollsen born, American writer, union organizer, socialist and feminist; Tell Me a Riddle won the 1961 O. Henry Award for Best American Short Story

1922 – Diana McConnel Wellesley born, later Duchess of Wellington; WWII British intelligence officer, who helped foil a bomb plot aimed at her wedding at St. George’s Cathedral on January 28, 1944; she didn’t tell her groom of the near-miss, and he assumed they had a police escort because she was a general’s daughter, and he was the heir to the Dukedom

1925 – Moscelyne Larkin born, one of the “Five Moons” Native American ballerinas from Oklahoma. She danced with the Original Ballet Russe and the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, she and her husband settled in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where in 1956 they founded the Tulsa Ballet and its associated school. It became a major regional company in the American Southwest and made its New York City debut in 1983

1927 – Zuzana Růžičková born, Czech harpsichordist of Jewish heritage; between 1965 and 1975, she became the first harpsichord player to record the complete keyboard works of Johann Sebastian Bach. As a teenager, she was imprisoned in the Nazi concentration camps at Terezin and Auschwitz, then transported to the Bergen-Belsen death camp, but it was liberated in April, 1945, and she survived. When she and her husband, Czech composer Viktor Kalabis, refused to join the Czechoslovak Communist Party in 1950s, they faced political persecution. After they began to get recognition outside of Czechoslovakia, they were invited to study in Paris, but were not allowed to travel abroad together. She allowed to travel without her husband because she was highly paid for performances across Europe, but most of the foreign currency she earned was confiscated by Czech authorities. She was not allowed to teach music to Czech students at home, and her participation in the Czech Philharmonic was restricted because of her Jewish background. After the death of Joseph Stalin, some of the travel restrictions were eased, but the family members of Růžičková and Kalabis still in Czechoslovakia kept them from defecting. In 1962, she co-founded the Prague Chamber Soloists with conductor Václav Neumann. After the Prague Spring of 1968, the Czech government forced her to publically accept state-sponsored awards as propaganda for the regime. During the Velvet Revolution in November, 1989, she joined in the anti-government protests, and went on strike. When the Communist regime was overthrown, she finally became a full Professor at the Academy of Music, and established a harpsichord class at the Music Academy of Bratislava. She and Viktor Kalabis were married for 54 years, until his death in 2006

1936 – Harriet Hilliard, vocalist and wife of bandleader Ozzie Nelson, sings, “Get Thee Behind Me Satan”

1939 – Norway claims Queen Maud Land in Antarctica

1943 – Franklin D. Roosevelt becomes the first U.S. President to travel by airplane while in office in order to meet with Britain’s Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Casablanca to review the wartime situation and discuss strategy

1943 – Holland Taylor born, American actress; noted for researching, writing, and producing her one-woman show,  Ann: An Affectionate Portrait of Ann Richards, which played in 2011-2012 at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, and on Broadway in 2013. Holland was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Lead Actress in a Play for her performance. In a 2015 interview, she revealed she was in a serious relationship with a woman, and her partner, Sarah Paulson, later confirmed their relationship. Holland is a long-time supporter of Aids for AIDS in Los Angeles, serving on their Honorary Board and appearing in their annual fundraiser, Best in Drag Show  

Holland Taylor as Ann Richards in her one-woman show

1943 – Shannon Lucid born, American biochemist and NASA astronaut who set the records for longest stay in space by an American, and by a woman, on a mission aboard the Mir space station, the only American woman to serve aboard Mir. In 1976, when NASA announced that it would begin accepting women into the space program, Lucid immediately applied. Her first shuttle flight was in 1985 on the Discovery, followed by the Atlantis in 1989 and 1991, where she conducted a variety of biomedical experiments. In 1993, she became the first woman to travel into space on four separate occasions on the Columbia, setting a record for the most total flight time accumulated by a female astronaut on the shuttle (838 hours, 54 minutes). On Mir, she performed experiments, mostly on the effects of longterm space flight on the human body

1944 – Nina Totenberg born, American legal affairs correspondent for National Public Radio (NPR), primarily reporting on the U.S Supreme Court; panelist on Inside Washington (1992-2013); honored seven times by the American Bar Association for excellence in legal reporting; recipient of the first-ever Toni House Award for body of work by the American Judicature Society; first radio journalist named as Broadcaster of the Year by the National Press Foundation; her reporting on Anita Hill’s testimony during the Clarence Thomas hearings became part of the Jewish Women’s Archive’s online exhibit Jewish Women and the Feminist Revolution

1949 – Mary Robison born, American novelist and short story writer; her novel, Why Did I Ever, won the 2001 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Fiction

1950 – The first prototype of the MiG-17 makes its maiden flight

1951 – Judas Mahlangu born, South African artist; began working for the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) in 1982 as a graphic artist; member of the Soweto Arts Society; his work has been exhibited in Germany, Israel, Portugal and the U.S., and in group and solo exhibitions in South Africa

 Revisions – by Judas Mahlangu

1952 – NBC’s long-running news program Today debuts, with host Dave Garroway

1953 – Josip Broz Tito is inaugurated as the first President of Yugoslavia

1954 – The Hudson Motor Car Company merges with Nash-Kelvinator Corporation to form American Motors Corporation

1957 – Kripalu Maharaj was named fifth Jagadguru (world teacher) after giving seven days of speeches before 500 Hindu scholars

1957 – Anchee Min born in Shanghai, Chinese-American author and memoirist; noted for Red Azalea and The Cooked Seed: A Memoir, and six historical novels, including The Last Empress, based on the life of Empress Dowager Cixi

1963 – George Wallace sworn in as Alabama’s governor, pledging “segregation forever”

1967 – The Human Be-In, takes place in San Francisco CA Golden Gate Park, inspiring the ‘Summer of Love’

1971 – At a Conference of Heads of State of the British Commonwealth of Nations held in Singapore, Britain proposed selling arms to South Africa, which was opposed by many Heads of State. An eight-country study group was formed to consider the question on the context of security of maritime trade routes in the South Atlantic and Indian Ocean. Shortly after the conference a coup ousted Ugandan President Milton Obote, a vocal opponent of Britain’s arms sales to South Africa. The Ugandan revolution had badly affected President Julius Nyerere of Tanzania and President Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia who were also vocal opponents of the British proposal. In February of the same year, without warning and completely disregarding the eight-country study group, Britain decided to supply seven Wasp helicopters to South Africa. Britain’s actions threatened to cause the collapse of the British Commonwealth

1972 – Queen Margrethe II of Denmark ascends the throne, the first Queen of Denmark since 1412 and the first Danish monarch not named Frederick or Christian since 1513

1973 – Elvis Presley’s concert Aloha from Hawaii is broadcast live via satellite, setting a record for most watched broadcast by an individual entertainer in television history

1981 – In South Africa, an amendment is proposed to the Population Registration Act, first passed in 1950. The amendment would require that South Africans across the ‘colored’ and Black race spectrum be fingerprinted for a central fingerprint register, and a uniform identity document be issued to all races. In the 1950s, the Group Areas Act had been passed, which determined where people of different racial groups could live, and did not permit any mixing of racial groups. The Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act of 1949 had already made it illegal for a white person to marry a person of another race, and the Immorality Amendment Act of 1950 made it a crime for a white person and a person of another race to have sexual intercourse. The Population Registration Amendment Act was passed in 1982

1989 – Paul McCartney releases his album Back In The U.S.S.R. in Russia

1993 – In Hargeisa, Somalia, five women accused and convicted of adultery were publicly stoned to death by cheerful villagers shortly after evening prayers. UN officials who stood by and witnessed the stoning feared for their lives if they tried to interfere

1994 – U.S. President Clinton and Russian President Boris Yeltsin signed Kremlin Accords to end aiming missiles at any nation; dismantle the Ukrainian nuclear arsenal

1998 – Researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas report their findings on an enzyme that may slow the aging process and cell death

1999 – The U.S. proposes lifting the U.N. ceilings on the sale of oil in Iraq, if profits are restricted to use in buying medicine and food for the Iraqi people

2000 – A United Nations tribunal sentences five Bosnian Croats to up to 25 years in prison for the 1993 killing of more than 100 Bosnian Muslims

2004 – The national flag of the Republic of Georgia, the so-called “five cross flag”, is restored to official use after a hiatus of some 500 years

2004 – Enron finance chief Andrew Fastow pleads guilty to conspiracy, accepting a 10-year prison sentence

2005 – A European space probe sends back first detailed pictures of Saturn’s moon, Titan’s frozen surface

2010 – Yemen declares an open war against al-Qaeda. While battling the terrorist group cross several provinces, Yemen is also contending with Shia insurgency in the north and militant separatists in the south

2015 – Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson complete the first-ever free climb of the Dawn Wall of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park

2017 – Diplomats from 70 nations met in Paris “to officially restate their commitment to the two-state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Missing from the meeting were representatives from Israel, Palestine, and the incoming Trump administration. Outgoing U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was at the talks, which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed as “futile.”  The Israelis and Palestinians had not engaged in peace negotiations with each other since 2014


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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