ON THIS Day: May 3, 2020

May 3rd is

SUN Day *

Lumpy Rug Day *

National Textiles Day *

Chocolate Custard Day

Garden Meditation Day

All Things Considered Day *

Two Different Colored Shoes Day *

UN World Press Freedom Day *

Prevent Teen & Unplanned Pregnancy Day *


MORE! Golda Meir, Jimmy Winkfield and Clara Luper, click



Japan – Constitution Day

Mexico – Día de la Santa Cruz

Peru – Día de las Cruces

Poland – Constitution Day

Venezuela – La Cruz de Mayo


On This Day in HISTORY

752 – Mayan King Yaxun B’alam IV, (‘Bird Jaguar IV’) of Yaxchilan in modern-day Chiapas, Mexico assumes the throne

1446 – Margaret of York born, became Duchess of Burgundy as the third wife of Charles the Bold, the last Duke of Burgundy from the House of Valois. When Charles was killed in January 1477, at the Battle of Nancy in Lorraine, Margaret became the protector of the duchy and adviser to her step-daughter Mary, now the Duchess of Burgundy. Margaret had always been regarded as a skillful and intelligent politician, and now as the Dowager Duchess, her skills were much needed as her step-daughter was besieged by suitors, and Burgundy was vulnerable to attacks from all sides by the French. Margaret persuaded her brother, King Edward IV of England, to send enough troops to bolster resistance to the French advances. The French King, Louis XI, saw the danger Margaret posed to him, and tried to buy her off with a French pension and a promise of his personal protection, which she contemptuously refused. She strongly advised the new Duchess to accept the proposal of Maximilian of Habsburg, son of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III, to whom her father had betrothed her. Maximilian was ambitious and active enough, in Margaret’s opinion, to defend Mary’s legacy. They were married in August, 1477, and their first child, a son, was born in July 1478, followed in 1480 by a daughter. But in 1482, Mary broke her back in a fall from her horse, and died in March. Not only did Margaret lose her much-loved step-daughter, but Burgundy was plunged into political chaos. The Burgundians, sick of the long war with France, refused to accept Maximilian as regent for his 4-year-old son Duke Philip, or even as guardian for the children. The Three Estates of the Burgundian Lowlands signed the Treaty of Arras with Louis XI, granting him the Burgundian Lowlands, Picardy and the county of Boulogne. Margaret was unable to get any further help from her brother, because he had made a truce with France. Maximilian’s only option was to make a personal peace with Louis by arranging the betrothal of his two-year-old daughter, named Margaret in honor of the Dowager Duchess, to the young Dauphin of France. She was sent to be raised at the French court, taking with her a dowry of the Free County of Burgundy and the County of Artois. Maximilian was summoned back to Austria by his father in 1489, and Margaret was left to govern what was left of Burgundy together with the Burgundian Estates, joined with them in guardianship of the young Duke Philip. In addition to all these pressures, Margaret lost her brother, the Duke of Clarence, executed by their brother King Edward in 1478, then Edward himself died on 1483, and finally her youngest brother, Richard III, was killed at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485, ending the rule of England by the House of York. She offered financial backing to the challengers to the Tudors, even hiring continental mercenaries for Perkin Warbeck, supposed son of Edward IV, who likely was an impostor, and in any event was defeated at the Battle of Deal in 1495, and later executed by Henry VII, the Tudor king. Henry found Margaret problematic, but she was protected by Maximilian, who was backed his father, the Holy Roman Emperor. She died in 1503, at the age of 57, just three years before the untimely death of Duke Philip, at age 29, from typhoid fever. Perhaps Margaret’s true legacy was as a patron of dozens of illuminated manuscripts, and her patronage of William Caxton, who introduced the new art of printing to England. He made a special presentation copy of Recuyell of the Historyes of Troye, the first book printed in the English language, for her. The presentation book included a special engraving of Caxton presenting the book to Margaret


1469 – Niccolò Machiavelli born, Italian Renaissance politician, historian, philosopher and author, sometimes called the founder of modern political science; Il Principe

1481 – Juana de la Cruz Vázquez y Gutiérrez born, Spanish abbess of the Franciscan Third Order Regular, and mystic who experienced visions, muteness and the stigmata; the Church authorized her to preach publicly, an extraordinary permission for a woman in that time; 72 of her sermons were collected in 1509 in The Conhorte

1491 – Kongo monarch Nkuwu Nzinga is baptized by Portuguese missionaries, adopting the baptismal name of João I

1632 – Catherine of St. Augustine born, French-Canadian canoness regular and nurse; in 1648, she responded to an appeal for help nursing the sick at the newly-founded  Hotel-Dieu de Québec, the first hospital in Quebec. She learned the languages of the First Peoples of the region, and as Novice Mistress, she was entrusted with the training of candidates to the community. She also acted as treasurer of the hospital for nine years. She wore herself out in service to the hospital, her community, and many hours devoted to prayer and mortification of the flesh, and died at the age of 36. The Hotel-Dieu de Québec remains, now a teaching hospital affiliated with Université Laval’s medical school

1715 – A total solar eclipse was visible across northern Europe, and northern Asia, as predicted by Edmond Halley to within 4 minutes accuracy

1802 – Washington, D.C. is incorporated as a city

1825 – Laura Matilda Towne born, American abolitionist, physician and educator, relocates to the Sea Islands of South Carolina in 1862 to provide medical care and education to newly freed slaves, founds the Penn school

1830 – The Canterbury and Whitstable Railway is opened; it is the first steam-hauled passenger railway to issue season tickets and include a tunnel

1830 – The University of Athens is founded in Athens, Greece

1839 – Annie Blair Etheridge born, American nurse and vivandière (food service) who served on the Union side in the U.S. Civil War. She enlisted with her husband in the Second Michigan Voluntary Infantry, and continued with the Fifth Michigan, after her husband deserted, until 1864. She was known for her courage under fire. Armed with pistols for her protection and saddlebags filled with medical supplies, Etheridge frequently rode into the front lines on horseback to aid wounded soldiers, and her skirts were often torn by bullets. In 1864, all women were ordered out of camp as a result of an order from General Ulysses S. Grant. As a testimony to Etheridge’s admirable service, numerous officers signed a petition addressed to General Grant to allow Etheridge to remain in service on the field, which was not successful. “Gentle Annie” then worked for the Hospital Transport Service, a subcommittee of the U.S. Sanitary Commission.  Assigned to the Knickerbocker, under Amy M. Bradley, she aided in the transportation of wounded men from the ports of Alexandria, Virginia, to Philadelphia, New York City, and Washington.  For her work and courage, she was one of only two women who received the Kearny Cross, awarded to any Union soldier who had displayed meritorious, heroic, or distinguished acts while in the face of an enemy force.  Though Etheridge had never been paid during her service, when she mustered out in July 1865, she applied for and eventually received a pension of $25 a month. She also worked for awhile at the U.S. Treasury Department in Washington D.C.  When she died in 1913, she was buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

Annie Blair Etheridge wearing the Kearny Cross, and
another medal I haven’t been able to identify

1844 – Richard D’Oyly Carte born, theatrical impresario, producer of thirteen Gilbert and Sullivan operas

1849 – Jacob Riis born in Denmark, American “muckraking” journalist, photographer and social reformer who wrote about and took pictures of NYC slum conditions

1849 – The May Uprising in Dresden, in the Kingdom of Saxony, fails. It is one of the last events in the Revolutions of 1848 that aimed to unite the German states into one nation under a constitutional monarchy; the failure of these revolutions meant a sharp rise in emigrants leaving the German states, many of them well-educated, especially artists, musicians and writers. For example, between 1851 and 1860, the number of German immigrants to the U.S. was 951,667. The number of German immigrants in the previous decade was 434,626, and the majority of them were farmers

1853 – E. W. Howe born, American editor, essayist and novelist

1855 – William Walker, American freebooter, departs from San Francisco with about 60 men to conquer Latin America and create new slave states; he succeeds usurping in the presidency of the Republic of Nicaragua in 1856 and rules until 1857, when he was defeated by a coalition of Central American armies; Walker is executed by the government of Honduras in 1860

1867 – The Hudson’s Bay Company gives up all claims to Vancouver Island

1886 – Marcel Dupré born, French organist and composer

1892 – George Paget Thomson born, English physicist, awarded 1937 Nobel Prize in Physics for discovery of the wave properties of the electron by electron diffraction

1894 – Phyllis Greenacre born, psychoanalyst, her interest in the physical maturation and psychological development in children led to study of gifted infants, wrote “Swift and Carroll” (1955), a biographical study in applied analysis

1896 – Dodie Smith born, English children’s author and playwright; noted for Hundred and One Dalmatians, and I Capture the Castle 

1897 – Esther Graff born, Danish businesswoman and feminist. She worked for the transnational consumer goods company Unilever from 1922 until the 1940s, then became CEO of the Danish branch of the marketing communications company Lintas (now MullenLowe Lintas Group). She served as the fourth president of the International Alliance for Women (1952-1958), an NGO which promotes women’s human rights and gender equality

1898 – Septima Poinsette Clark born, American educator and civil rights activist, she developed literacy and citizenship workshops to support voting rights for African Americans; called “The Mother of the Movement” by Martin Luther King, Jr.

1898 – Golda Meir born in Ukraine, moved with family to the U.S. in 1906; Israeli educator and politician, 4th Prime Minister of Israel (1969-1974)

1901 – Estelle Massey Osborne born, first African American to earn a Master’s degree in Nursing Education, and the first black American head nurse (1923-1926), at St. Louis Hospital #2 in Missouri; returned to school, earned her BS (1929) and her Master of Science degree (1931); President of the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses (1934-1939); consultant to the National Nursing Council for War Services (1943-1945); on the American Nurses Association board (1948-1952); posthumously inducted into the American Nurses Association Hall of Fame

1902 – Jimmy Winkfield, riding Alan-a-Dale, wins the Kentucky Derby for the second year in a row; the last African American jockey to ride a winner in the derby

Jimmy Winkfield riding Alan-a-Dale

1903 – Bing Crosby born, American ‘crooner’singer-songwriter and movie star

1906 – Anna Roosevelt Halsted born, American newspaper and magazine editor, and children’s book author; appointed by President Kennedy to the Citizen’s Advisory Council on the Status of Women (1963-1968), and as vice-chair of the President’s Commission for the Observance of Human Rights (1968-1971); daughter of Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt

1912 – May Sarton born, prolific American poet, novelist and memoirist; Journal of a Solitude

1913 – William Inge born, American playwright; 1953 Pulitzer Prize for Picnic

1913 – Raja Harishchandra, the first full-length Indian feature film is released, the beginning of the Indian film industry

1917 – Betty Comden born, American screenwriter and librettist for Broadway and Hollywood musicals with comedy partner Adolph Green; notable for Bells Are Ringing, Singin’ in the Rain, and the screenplay for Auntie Mame (1958)

1919 – Pete Seeger born, American singer-songwriter, and activist; The Weavers

1920 – John Aaron Lewis born, American Jazz composer-arranger-pianist; musical director of the Modern Jazz Quartet

1921 – The Government of Ireland Act 1920 is passed, partitioning Ireland into Northern Ireland and Southern Ireland

1923 – Clara Shepard Luper born, civil rights leader and teacher; earned a Master of Arts degree in History Education in 1951; advisor for the Oklahoma City NAACP Youth Council in 1957, led them in 1958 in a successful sit-in at Katz drugstore, resulting in the Katz corporation desegregating their lunch counters in three states; led campaigns for equal banking rights, employment opportunities, open housing, and voting rights (1958-1964); in 1968, one of the few African-American teachers hired at a previously segregated Oklahoma City high school as part of a court-ordered desegregation plan; co-author of Behold the Walls, an account of the campaign for civil rights in Oklahoma City (1979)

Clara Shepard Luper and Melvin Porter, Oklahoma’s first African American State Senator

1932 – Robert Osborne born, American film historian and television host

1933 – James Brown, American singer-songwriter and producer

1933 – Nellie Tayloe Ross is appointed as the first woman director of the United States Mint, serving until 1953

1937 – Margaret Mitchell’s novel, Gone with the Wind, wins Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

1937 – Nélida Piñon born, Brazilian author, won the Walmap Prize, 1970, for her historical novel, Fundador (Founders), known for A Republica dos Sonhos (The Republic of Dreams), President of Academia Brasileira de Letras (Brazilian Academy of Letters)

1948 – U.S. Supreme Court rules in Shelley v. Kraemer that covenants prohibiting the sale of real estate to black Americans and other minorities are legally unenforceable

1949 – Ruth Lister born, Baroness Lister of Burtersett, Professor of Social Policy at Loughborough University, and author of books and articles on poverty and child poverty in particular, social issues and women’s citizenship; appointed to House of Lords as a Life Peer in 2011, and sits as a Labour Party member

1951 – The Festival of Britain debuts in London’s newly-constructed Royal Festival Hall

1951 – Tatyana Tolstaya born, Russian writer, TV host, publicist, novelist, and essayist; noted for her dystopian novel, The Slynx; her acerbic essays on Russian life; and for hosting the Russian cultural television programme, Школа злословия (The School for Scandal), from 2002 to 2014

1951 – U.S. Senate Committees on Armed Services and Foreign Relations begin closed door hearings on dismissal of General Douglas MacArthur by President Harry Truman

1951 – Christopher Cross born, American singer-songwriter; “Sailing” “Arthur’s Theme”

1952 – U.S. Lieutenant Colonels Joseph O. Fletcher and William P. Benedict land a plane at the North Pole

1959 – Uma Bharti born, Indian politician, member of the Indian Parliament; Minister of Drinking Water & Sanitation since 2017; Minister of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation (2014-2017)

1960 – Off-Broadway musical, The Fantasticks, opens in Greenwich Village, eventually becoming one of the longest-running musicals in New York

1960 – The Anne Frank House opens in Amsterdam, Netherlands

1961 – Leyla Zana born, Kurdish politician, peace and human rights activist; member of the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party until it was banned; elected as an independent member of the Grand National Assembly (1991-1994) ; imprisoned for 10 years when Turkish courts ruled her activities were against the unity of the country (1994-2004); the first Kurdish woman elected to Parliament (2011-2018)

1963 – The police in Birmingham, Alabama, responds with violent force, fire hoses and dogs, to stop the “Birmingham campaign” protesters. Images of the violent suppression are transmitted worldwide, bringing much greater attention to the Civil Rights Movement

1963 – Mona Siddiqui born in Pakistan, British Professor of Islamic and Interreligious Studies at the University of Edinburgh, the first person to hold this chair, and Dean International for the Middle East; her family moved to England when she was 5 years old; fluent in English, French, Arabic and Urdu

1971 – All Things Considered Day * celebrates the first broadcast of National Public Radio’s flagship program, All Things Considered

1971 – Anti-war protesters calling themselves the Mayday Tribe begin four days of demonstrations in Washington, D.C., aimed at shutting down the nation’s capital

1975 – Lumpy Rug Day * is launched by Robert Louis Birch, a librarian and linguist retired from the U.S. Patent Office Science Library, to expose all the inconvenient truths being swept under the rug by bigots and trigots (his word for people even worse than bigots)

1978 – The first unsolicited bulk commercial email (now known as “spam”) is sent by a Digital Equipment Corporation marketing representative to every ARPANET address on the U.S. West Coast

1978 – Sun Day * is designated by U.S. President Jimmy Carter, as a day of advocacy for solar power, at the suggestion of Denis Hayes, who coordinated the first Earth Day in 1970.  The inaugural Sun Day events which took place in Washington DC resulted in a new single day ridership record being set for Washington’s Metrorail of 197,201

1979 – Margaret Thatcher forms her government as the first female Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

1993 – UN World Press Freedom Day * is proclaimed by the UN General Assembly, to commemorate the Windhoek Declaration produced at a 1991 UNESCO seminar to promote an independent and pluralistic African Press, and freedom of the press throughout the world as a keystone of participatory democracy

1996 – Prevent Teen & Unplanned Pregnancy Day * sponsored by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy was founded in 1996 to combat the nation’s incredibly high rates of teen pregnancy, and has expanded their campaign to include all unplanned pregnancies

2001 – The U.S. loses its seat on the UN Human Rights Commission for the first time since the commission was formed in 1947

2009 – Two Different Colored Shoes Day * is launched by Dr. Arlene Kaiser as a day to break out of your routine and have some fun – why be “normal” – be YOU!

2015 – Nepal Earthquake: A rescue team saved a 101-year-old man who was buried alive after the previous week’s devastating earthquake in Nepal, police outside Katmandu reported. The man, Funchu Tamang, was found buried in the collapsed remains of his house in Nuwakot district’s Kimtang village, 50 miles northwest of the capital. He was taken to a local hospital in stable condition. The official death toll from the quake has risen over 7,000, and Nepal’s government expects the toll to climb “much higher.” Later reports put the death toll close to 9,000 people, and nearly 22,000 injured

2016 – National Textiles Day * is founded by Valley Forge Fabrics to recognize all that textiles do to improve our lives. Whether woven from natural or synthetic fibers, textiles are the stuff from which our clothes, bedding, furniture covers, rugs, curtains, and canvas for art and sailing is made

2018 – The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), which votes on the annual Oscar awards, announced that its Board of Governors has decided to expel actor Bill Cosby and director Roman Polanski. The organization said the men did not meet its standards of conduct to “uphold the Academy’s values of respect for human dignity.” Last month, Cosby was found guilty on three counts of indecent aggravated assault, having been convicted of drugging and sexually assaulting plaintiff Andrea Constand in 2004. Polanski, the director of Chinatown and Rosemary’s Baby, has lived as a fugitive from the U.S. after being charged with drugging and raping a 13-year-old in 1977. He has received six Oscar nominations, and won Best Director for The Pianist in 2002. 


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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