ON THIS DAY: May 28, 2020

May 28th is

Amnesty International Day *

Menstrual Hygiene Day *

National Brisket Day

Sierra Club Day *

Hamburger Day


MORE! Xin Qiji, Betty Shabazz and Elton John, click



Armenia – First Republic Day

Azerbaijan – Republic Day

Croatia – Armed Forces Day

Ethiopia – Derg Downfall Day *

Nepal – Republic Day

Philippines – Flag Day *


On This Day in HISTORY

585 BC – According to Herodotus, a solar eclipse occurs, as predicted by the Greek philosopher and scientist Thales of Miletus. The eclipse is interpreted as an omen, which stops a battle between the Medes and the Lydians, who agree to a truce. This is one of the cardinal dates from which other dates can be calculated

1140 – Xin Qiji born, Chinese poet, and military leader during the Southern Song dynasty; best known for his poems, a type of lyric poetry in the tradition of classical Chinese poetry. Over six hundred of Xin Qiji’s poems survive today 

1359 (?) – Owain Glyndŵr born, Welsh ruler, last native of Wales to be Prince of Wales, leads a fierce revolt against English rule which ultimately fails

1524 – Selim II (sometimes called Sarhoş Selim, meaning Selim the Drunk) born, Sultan of the Ottoman Empire (1566-1574), the youngest son of Suleiman the Magnificent, who came to the throne because his four older brothers had all died, including a half-brother executed by order of his father

1533 – Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, declares the marriage of Henry VII of England and Anne Boleyn to be valid

1588 – The Spanish Armada, with 130 ships and 30,000 men, sets sail from Lisbon, Portugal, heading for the English Channel. (The last ship leaves port on May 30)

The Spanish Armada and English ships in 1588, artist unknown

1779 – Thomas Moore born, Irish singer-songwriter; wrote lyrics for “The Minstrel Boy” and “The Last Rose of Summer”

1830 – U.S. Congress passes, and President Andrew Jackson signs into law two days later, the Indian Removal Act; the act authorizes the President to negotiate with southern Native tribes for their removal to territory west of the Mississippi River in exchange for their ancestral lands, but Jackson uses the act to exceed the authority it grants him. He forces the relocation of 46,000 native peoples from their tribal homelands, known as the “Trail of Tears” because so many die from exposure, disease and starvation during forced marches under military compulsion

1858 – Lizzie Black Kander born, American social reformer; working as a truant officer, she is appalled at the living conditions of immigrants, and joins the Milwaukee chapter of the National Council of Jewish Women, which provides classes in sewing, cooking and English to Russian immigrants; Kander founds the Milwaukee Jewish Settlement House, and teaches cooking and nutrition classes there; she compiles The Settlement Cookbook, the sale of which funds the settlement and allows it to move into larger facilities as it grows

1881 – Daniël Francois Malherbe born, South African novelist, poet and dramatist; his work helped establish Afrikaans as a South African cultural language. Best known for his novel Vergeet nil (Don’t Forget) about the Boer War 2, and En die wawiele rol (And the Wagon Wheels Roll On), which describes the Afrikaner Groot Trek (Great Trek)

1888 – Jim Thorpe born, American athlete and Olympic gold medalist, the first American Indian to win a gold medal; member of the Sac and Fox nation

1888 – Vivienne Haigh-Wood born, English writer who contributed poems, short stories and book reviews under various pseudonyms to the literary magazine The Criterion. Her disastrous marriage to T.S. Eliot, lasting from 1915 to 1933, when he formally separated from her, has been the subject of much speculation. She had health problems, beginning in early childhood with tuberculosis of the bone in her left arm which several operations failed to eliminate. As a teenager, she had heavy, irregular menstruation, to her great embarrassment, and severe pre-menstrual tension, which led to mood swings, fainting spells, and migraines. A doctor prescribed potassium bromide, used as a sedative and anticonvulsant, which was widely banned decades later because of its chronic toxicity. It was often given to women who were diagnosed as “hysterics.” Her mother believed she was suffering from “moral insanity” defined as “madness consisting in a morbid perversion of the natural feelings, affections, inclinations, temper, habits, moral dispositions, and natural impulses, without any remarkable disorder or defect of the interest or knowing and reasoning faculties, and particularly without any insane illusion or hallucinations.” In 1938, after police found her confused and wandering the streets, her brother had her committed to a mental hospital. She died there at age 58 in 1947, either from a heart attack or a possibly deliberate overdose

1892 – Sierra Club Day * – The Sierra Club is incorporated in San Francisco “to explore, enjoy, and render accessible the mountain regions of the Pacific Coast; to publish authentic information concerning them,” and “to enlist the support and cooperation of the people and government in preserving the forests and other natural features of the Sierra Nevada”

1898 – Philippines Flag Day * – The Philippine flag is first unfurled after the revolutionary army defeats the Spanish at the Battle of Alapan

1900 – Gare d’Orsay railway station opens in Paris, the world’s first electrified urban rail terminal; converted to the Musée d’Orsay in 1986

1910 – T-Bone Walker born, African American Blues guitarist

1910 – Ian Fleming born, British author of the James Bond spy thriller series

1912 – Ruby Payne-Scott born, Australian physicist and astronomer, the first woman radio astronomer; noted for her work at Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation solar bursts; she discovered Type I and Type III bursts, and contributed to work on Type II and IV bursts, and the development of the first radio astronomical interferometer observation

1913 – May Swenson born, American poet, translator and playwright, poet-in-residence for several universities, Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, recipient of numerous awards and honors

1916 – Walker Percy born, American novelist; National Book Award Winner; The Moviegoer, Love in the Ruins, Lost in the Cosmos

1929 – The first all-color talking picture On With the Show is exhibited

1933 – Zelda Rubinstein born, American actress, and AIDS and human rights activist; best known for playing Ginny on TV’s Picket Fences, and the medium Tangina Barrons in Poltergeist; also known for her outspoken advocacy for little people, and for a series of advertisements promoting AIDS awareness and safer sex, beginning in 1984. She was part of the first AIDS Project Los Angeles AIDS Walk

1934 – The Glyndebourne festival in Sussex, England, is inaugurated

1936 – Alan Turing submits “On Computable Numbers” for publication, in which he sets out the theoretical basis for modern computers

1936 – Betty Shabazz born, American civil rights activist; took college classes in her thirties to earn a PhD; Medgar Evers College Director of Institutional Advancement and Public Affairs (1980-1997); widow of Malcolm X

1940 – Maeve Binchy born, Irish author, playwright, columnist; one of Ireland’s most recognizable writers; 1999 British Book Award for Lifetime Achievement

1942 – WWII, North Africa: Operation Venezia, Wehrmacht Field Marshall Erwin Rommel’s third offensive to push the British back into Egypt, is launched

1944 – Gladys Knight born, American Motown singer-songwriter, leader of Gladys Knight and the Pips; ‘Empress of Soul’

1945 – John Fogerty born, American singer-songwriter, guitarist; Creedence Clearwater Revival and solo career

1946 – Dame Janet Paraskeva born, British government official; chair of the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission (2007-2012); Civil Service commissioner (2006-2007); previously served as a magistrate and member of the Youth Justice Board

1947 – Lynn Johnston born, Canadian cartoonist, known for her comic strip For Better or For Worse; first woman and first Canadian to win the National Cartoonist’s Society’s 1985 Reuben Award for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year

1952 – The women of Greece win the right to vote

1955 – “The Ballad of Davy Crockett” is #1 on the pop charts

1955 – Laura Amy Schiltz born, American children’s and young adult author; her books are often set in historical times, including  Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village, 2008 Newbery Medal winner, and The Hired Girl, winner of the 2015 Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction; she also writes fantasy, like The Night Fairy

1961 – Amnesty International Day * – The Observer, a British newspaper, publishes an article called “The Forgotten Prisoners” by the lawyer Peter Benenson; citing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights articles 18 and 19, Benenson announces an “Appeal for Amnesty, 1961” campaign and calls for “common action” – which inspires the founding of Amnesty International, one of the best-known and most-effective human rights organizations in the world

1965 – Mary Coughlan born, Irish politician; served as Teachta Dála (1987-2011), which is a member of Dáil Éireann, the lower house of the Oireachtas (Irish Parliament); where she served on a number of committees, and was appointed several different cabinet positions; she served as Tánaiste (second most-senior officer in the Irish government, from 2009 to 2010)

1966 – Ike and Tina Turner release “River Deep, Mountain High”

1975 – Maura Johnston born, American music critic and writer; editor of Gawker Media’s Idolator (2006-2009); Music editor of The Village Voice (2011-2012); co-founder of Maura Magazine (2013-2015); adjunct professor at Boston College, and the college’s 2013 inaugural Liberal Arts Journalism Fellow

1976 – 29th Cannes Film Festival: Taxi Driver, directed by Martin Scorsese, wins the coveted Palme d’Or

1979 – The European Market accepts Greece as member

1991 – Derg Downfall Day * in Ethiopia: the Derg regime falls, just days after its leader, Mengistu Haile Mariam, flees to asylum in Zimbabwe. The military junta leader’s fourteen years in power resulted in 400,000 starvation deaths, due to the Red Terror, a brutal crackdown on opposition groups; holding up international aid during the worst famine in a century; and forcing opponents into resettlement in the worst famine areas

1998 – Elton John and Bernie Taupin win an Ivor Novello Award for their re-written version “Candle in the Wind ’97” as a tribute to Princess Diana

2008 – The first meeting of the Constituent Assembly of Nepal formally declares Nepal a republic, ending the 240-year reign of the Shah dynasty

2011 – Malta votes 53% in favor of a referendum to allow divorces; a law allowing divorce under certain conditions is enacted later in the year

2014 – Menstrual Hygiene Day is created by NGO WASH United, a German-based group, with support from over 270 global partners, to end the isolation and shaming of women and girls as “unclean” during their monthly menses

2019 – Box v. Planned Parenthood: The U.S. Supreme Court left in place a decision blocking a provision of an Indiana law that would let the state ban abortions that are motivated by race, sex, or disability. The Court did say the state could implement a part of the law requiring abortion clinics to bury or cremate fetal remains. The decision signaled support by the conservative majority for some state efforts to tighten abortion regulations, but hesitation on re-examining key abortion rights precedents. Conservative Justice Clarence Thomas wrote that the court would “soon need to confront” the issue. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said she would have overturned the entire Indiana law, saying the cost and trauma of the state’s rules “may well constitute an undue burden” on a woman’s rights.


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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