ON THIS DAY: July 5, 2020

July 5th is:

Apple Turnover Day

Graham Cracker Day

Bikini Day *

Workaholics Day


MORE! Sarah Siddons, Frederick Douglass and Mitsuye Yamada, click



Algeria — Independence Day

Armenia — Constitution Day

Cape Verde — Independence Day

Czech Republic and Slovakia —
Saints Cyril & Methodius Day

Isle of Man — Tynwald Day
(Manx National Day)

Venezuela — Independence Day


On This Day in HISTORY

328 – Constantine the Great is present as Constantine’s Bridge is opened, a Roman bridge over the Danube River, considered the longest river bridge of the ancient world

465 – Ahkal Moʼ Nahb I born, ajaw (ruler) of the Maya city of Palenque (501-524), the earliest recorded ruler of Palenque whose exact dates of birth, accession and death have been proved

1029 – Al-Mustansir Billah born, Fatamid caliph in Egypt from 1036 to 1094, the longest reigning Muslim ruler. He was declared heir to the throne when he was only eight months old, and ascended the throne at the age of six. His mother served as regent during his minority.  Between 1065 and 1072, there was a terrible famine followed by a plague epidemic, which left houses in whole districts completely empty, while Turkish mercenaries drained the treasury, and began fighting among themselves. Nasir al-Dawa, leader of the victorious Turkish faction, became so overbearing he was assassinated, but the other factions then behaved like brigands. Violence and plunder raged in the streets of Cairo and the Egyptian countryside alike

1687 – Isaac Newton publishes Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica

1755 – Sarah Siddons born Sarah Kemble, the most famous and admired English actress of her generation; noted for her portrayal of tragic roles, Lady Macbeth in particular. She was one of the first actresses to play the title role of Hamlet in Shakespeare’s play. In 1812, during her farewell performance as Lady Macbeth, the audience applause and shouts at the end of the sleep-walking scene were so tumultuous that the curtain was brought down, then raised several minutes later to reveal Siddons, no longer dressed as Lady Macbeth. She made her farewell speech to the audience without finishing the play

Sara Siddons as Lady Macbeth, 1814, by Henry George Harlow

1764 – János Lavotta born, Hungarian composer, violinist and theatre director, a noted composer of music based on Verbunkos, Hungarian dance music strongly influenced by the Rom (inaccurately called gypsies)

1770 – Russo-Turkish War, Battle of Chesme: a naval battle begins in Chesme Bay, near the island of Chios, between the Ottoman Empire fleet, commanded by Mandalzade Husamaddin Pasha, and two Russian squadrons under overall command of Count Alexei Orlov. The battle continued until July 7, when almost all of the Ottoman fleet was lost to fires caused by Russian bombardment, the worst Ottoman naval defeat since the Battle of Lepanto in 1571. The Russian fleet would control the Aegean Sea for the next five years

1775 – The American Second Continental Congress adopts the Olive Branch Petition, a final attempt to avoid full-out warfare with Great Britain; when the King refuses to meet with the Americans or even look at the petition, many colonists who had been looking for a compromise realized the only choices were independence or complete submission to British rule

1794 – Graham Cracker Day *- Sylvester Graham born, Presbyterian minister, noted vegetarian and whole-grain advocate; Graham crackers, inspired by his preaching, are named for him

1801 – David Farragut born, American admiral noted for ordering “Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!” at the Battle of Mobile Bay, Alabama, the Confederates’ only remaining open port on the Gulf of Mexico, in which his fleet is victorious

1805 – Robert FitzRoy born, English Royal Navy officer, scientist, hydrographer, and pioneering meteorologist, who was captain of the HMS Beagle during Charles Darwin’s famous voyage. Ironically, when The Origin of Species was published, he deeply disapproved on religious grounds of Darwin’s conclusions.  Appointed as Governor of New Zealand (1843-1845), he tried to protect the Māori from illegal land sales claimed by British settlers, but was given few military resources, and the Government revenue, mostly from custom duties, was woefully inadequate. When a Māori leader in the far north, Hone Heke, had the flagpole at Kororareka cut down in protest of the government’s non-responsiveness to their complaints, FitzRoy foolishly had the flagpole re-erected each of the four times it was cut down, and the Flagstaff War erupted. The New Zealand Company, which was one of the culprits in land fraud, often “reselling” land it did not own, was busy back in London lobbying the House of Commons to recall FitzRoy. He was replaced in 1845 by the Governor of South Australia, George Grey. When FitzRoy returned to England in 1848, he became superintendent of the Royal Navy Dockyards, then got his final sea command, but soon left sea duty due to ill health. He established the Meteorological Office (the Met Office), coined the word “forecasts” for his accurate weather predictions, created systems to get weather information to sailors and fishermen, and was promoted to Vice-Admiral in 1863. But his failing health, financial concerns, and troubles at the Meteorological Office plunged him into depression, and he took his own life in 1865

1810 – P. T. Barnum born, co-founder Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus

1841 – Thomas Cook organizes first package excursion, from Leicester to Loughborough

1852 – Frederick Douglass delivers his speech, What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? – to the Ladies’ Anti-Slavery Society in Rochester NY

1853 – Cecil Rhodes born, British mining magnate, white supremacist politician in South Africa, co-founder of De Beers, which controls the diamond cartel

1857 – Clara Zetkin born, German Marxist theorist and activist, women’s rights advocate. Went into exile in Paris when Bismarck banned socialist activity in Germany, and was part of organizing the Socialist International in 1889; she was a key organizer of the 1910 International Socialist Women’s Conference in Copenhagen, which endorsed the idea of an international day of action for women’s suffrage, now International Women’s Day; the Clara Zetkin Medal is awarded to honor women active in women’s rights

1865 – The second of the British Locomotive Acts (dubbed the ‘Red Flag’ Act ), the 1865 act was the most restrictive: automobiles, and all other ‘road locomotives’ were restricted to a maximum speed of 4 mph (6.4 km/h) in the country and 2 mph in the city, and required that a man carrying a red flag walk at least 60 yards (55 m) in front of the vehicle, who must assist with the passage of horse and carriages, after signaling the driver to stop for them; vehicles had to have functional lights, and were prohibited from sounding whistles or blowing off steam while on the road

1865 – The U.S. Secret Service begins operating as part of the Treasury Department

1867 – A. E. Douglass born, American astronomer and archaeologist, discovered the correlation between tree rings and sunspot cycles; developed dendrochronology, dating past events and the age of trees by analyzing their growth rings

1879 – Wanda Landowska born, Polish harpsichordist, first person to record Bach’s Goldberg Variations on the harpsichord, instrumental in reviving the harpsichord’s popularity in the 20th century

1880 – Jan Kubelík born, Czech violinist and composer

1880 – George Bernard Shaw, age 23, leaves his job with the Edison Telephone Company. Later he says, “You must not suppose, because I am a man of letters, that I never tried to earn an honest living.”

George Bernard Shaw, age 32 – 1889

1884 – The German Empire takes control of Cameroon, Kamerun in German, during the European “Scramble for Africa,” declaring the German Protectorate of Kamerun

1888 – Louise Freeland Jenkins born, American astronomer; compiles a catalogue of stars within 10 parsecs of the sun; editor, 3rd edition of the Yale Bright Star Catalogue;  pursued research on trigonometric parallax of nearby stars, and variable stars

1889 – Jean Cocteau born, French writer, playwright, artist and filmmaker

1899 – Anna Arnold Hedgeman born, American civil rights leader, politician, and writer;  first African American woman to hold a mayoral cabinet post in New York, YWCA executive director, executive secretary of the National Council for a Permanent Fair Employment Practices Commission (FEPC), assistant dean of women at Howard University

1905 – Madeleine Sylvain-Bouchereau born, pioneering Haitian sociologist, a principle founder of the Ligue Féminine d’Action Sociale (Women’s Social Action League), the first feminist organization in Haiti, and a regular contributor to La Voix des Femmes, the organization’s journal. After graduating in law at the University of Haiti (1933), she studied education and sociology at the University of Puerto Rico (1936-1938), and got her doctorate in sociology at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania (1941).  Published Haïti et ses femmes: Une étude d’évolution culturelle (Haiti and its Women: A Study of Cultural Evolution) in 1957. Taught at Haiti’s Ethnology Institute (1941-1945), then at Fisk University. Haitian delegate to the Third Inter-American Conference on Education in 1937, and was part of a UN effort to arrange social services for Polish political prisoners in 1944; Adviser to the government of Togo on community development (1966-1968)

1914 – Annie Fischer born, Hungarian pianist and composer

1915 – The Liberty Bell leaves Philadelphia, reluctantly sent by train to the Panama-Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco (it had sustained damage during previous tours); it makes many stops coming and going and was seen by an estimated 10 million people during its journey back and forth, and another 2 million people flock to see it at the exposition. This is the last time it will leave the confines of Philadelphia

1920 – Mary Louise Hancock born, American politician and activist; New Hampshire state senator and  the state’s first woman Planning Director, who later worked for the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development. Known as the “Grand Dame” of New Hampshire politics, she was the recipient of a Robert Frost Award and the Susan B. Anthony Award. In 2000, New Hampshire’s governor proclaimed July 5 as Mary Louse Hancock Day *

Mary Louse Hancock (seated) with Hillary Clinton

1921 – Chicago White Sox players accused of throwing the World Series

1923 – Mitsuye Yamada born as Mitsuye Yasutake in Fukuoka, Japan; Japanese-American activist, feminist, fiction author, poet, essayist, editor and professor of English. Her parents Her parents were both first-generation Japanese Americans living in the U.S., but they were visiting Japan when she was born. living in the U.S. but were visiting Japan when she was born. Her father was arrested by the FBI for espionage after Pearl Harbor, so she and her family were interned at Mindoka War Relocation Center in Idaho. She was allowed to leave to attend college after she renounced loyalty to the Emperor of Japan. Her first book, Camp Notes and Other Poems, was written during the war, but was not published until 1976. She had to become a “naturalized” U.S. citizen in 1955, five years after her marriage to Yoshikasu Yamada, who was born in Hawaii, and served as a medic and a translator in the U.S. Army during WWII.  Her other works include Lighthouse, her essay “Invisibility is an Unnatural Disaster,” and Desert Run: Poems and stories

1924 – A revolt, led by retired General Isidoro Dias Lopes, is launched by Brazilian army officers in São Paulo and Rio Grande do Sul, attempting to bring down the government of President Artur Bernardes (1922-1926)

1931 – Ismail Mahomed born, South Africa lawyer who refused admission to the all-white Pretoria Bar Association, but was admitted to the Johannesburg Bar Association, then was banned from setting up a law practice in an office of his own, and had to work out of colleagues’ offices while they were away.  In the 1960s he was extensively briefed to appear in matters in Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland and Rhodesia, and in 1974 he became the first non-white in South African history to take silk (become a Senior Counsel). In 1979 he was appointed to the appeal court of Swaziland, and in 1982 was made an Appeal Judge in Lesotho, where he would later become president of the Appeals court. He was made an English Barrister in 1984. In 1991 he became the chair of the Convention for a Democratic South Africa, and the country’s first non-white judge of the Supreme Court of South Africa. He was later appointed to the Appeal Court. He was made a judge of the Constitutional Court in 1995. Mahomed was appointed as the Chief Justice of South Africa (1997-2000) by President Nelson Mandela. He died in 2000 at age 69

1934 – Bing Crosby records “Love in Bloom” with Irving Aaronson’s orchestra

1934 – “Bloody Thursday” – San Francisco police open fire on striking longshoremen, killing two men and wounding another, during a strike that lasted 83 days and led to the unionization of all the U.S. West Coast ports. Memorialized by the ILWU (International Longshore and Warehouse Union)

1935 – President Franklin Roosevelt signs the National Labor Relations Act

President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs the National Labor Relations Act on July 5, 1935. Behind him (L to R): U.S. Rep. Theodore A. Peyser, U.S. Labor Secretary Frances Perkins and U.S. Sen. Robert F. Wagner

1944 – Leni Björklund born, Swedish politician, the first woman Minister of Defence for Sweden (2002-2006); Secretary-General of the Church of Sweden (1999-2002)

1946 – Bikini Day *- French fashion designer Louis Réard introduces his new swimsuit design, the bikini, named after the Bikini Atoll where Americans test hydrogen bombs

1948 – Britain’s National Health Service inaugurated

1950 – The Israeli Knesset (parliament) enacts the Law of Return, declaring the right of all Jews to come to Israel, becoming residents and citizens

1953 – Caryn Linda Navy born, American mathematician and computer scientist. Blind  from retinopathy of prematurity;  known for her work in set-theoretic topology and Braille technology; graduate of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), honored with the AMITA Senior Academic Award from the Association of MIT Alumnae

1958 – Veronica Guerin born, Irish journalist; switched careers in 1990 from accountancy, public relations and political campaign agent, to work as a reporter for the Sunday Business Post and Sunday Tribune; in 1994, she began writing about crime for the Sunday Independent, focusing on using her accounting skills to trace money from illegal drug transactions. She received death threats, including shots fired into her home in 1994, and a gunman who rang her doorbell, then as she opened the door, pushed his way in and shot her in the leg. She was beaten by drug kingpin John Gilligan when she confronted him about his lavish lifestyle with no source of income. She continued her investigations, and was honored with the 1995 International Press Freedom Award. In June, 1996, John Traynor, one of Gilligan’s lieutenants, was seeking a High Court order to prevent her from publishing a book about his involvement in organized crime, and she was scheduled to speak at a Freedom Forum conference in London on the topic of “Dying to Tell the Truth: Journalists at Risk.” Two days before she was to speak at the conference, Guerin was shot and killed while stopped at a traffic light by two men on a motorcycle, causing national outrage in Ireland. The investigation into her death identified the killers as members of Gilligan’s drug organization. Labour unions across Ireland called for a moment of silence in her memory, and Taoiseach (Ireland’s head of state) John Bruton attended her funeral. Within a week of her murder, the Oireachtas (Irish parliament), enacted the Proceeds of Crime Act 1996 and the Criminal Assets Bureau Act 1996, so that assets purchased with money obtained through crime could be seized by the government

1961 – Ray Charles releases “Hit the Road Jack”

1968 – Rock concert impresario Bill Graham opens The Fillmore West in San Francisco

1968 – Susan Wojcicki born, Polish-American technology executive; CEO of You Tube since 2014; she was Google’s first marketing manager in 1999, then became Senior VP of Advertising & Commerce. She handled Google’s acquisition of You Tube in 2006, and then became You Tube’s CEO

1969 – Jeji Kohan born, American television writer and producer; creator of the Showtime series Weeds (2005-2012), and the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black (2013-2019)

1973 – The Isle of Man begins issuing its own postage stamps

1975 – Cape Verde gains its independence from Portugal

1984 – In U.S. v. Leon, U.S. Supreme Court weakens the 70-year-old ”exclusionary rule,” which protects a defendant’s rights by forbidding the use of the direct and indirect evidentiary fruits of the government’s misconduct, ruling 6-3 that evidence seized with defective court warrants can be used against defendants in criminal trials, calling it the “good faith” exception

1989 – Oliver North is sentenced by U.S. District Judge Gerhard A. Gesell to a three-year suspended prison term, two years probation, $150,000 in fines and 1,200 hours community service for his part in the Iran-Contra scandal. His convictions are later overturned, and all charges against him dismissed in 1991. In May 2018, Oliver North was chosen as the next President of the National Rifle Association, and began his term in September, but resigned under pressure seven months later, in April 2019

1989 – South Africa’s daily national newspaper, Business Day, reports that Minister of Law and Order Adriaan Vlok said that apartheid has become an albatross around the country’s neck. “If you ask a black South African what apartheid has done, he will say it has caused nothing but grief… If we do not get rid of it, it will crucify us all.”

1996 – Dolly the sheep becomes the first mammal cloned from adult (sheep’s) cells

2000 – The UN Security Council imposes an 18-month embargo on all rough diamond exports from Sierra Leone, attempting to prevent the rebel Revolutionary United Front, then in control of 90% of the nation’s diamond mines, from continuing their thriving gems-for-guns trade that was fueling a simmering civil war

2009 – Largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold is discovered near Hammerwich, England

2013 – India’s National Food Security Act enacted to provide food subsidies for the poor

2015 – At the polls, 61% of Greek voters rejected the eurozone bailout proposal by the International Monetary Fund, European Union, and the European Central Bank in a referendum. Greece had defaulted on a $1.8 billion IMF loan the previous week, and might have faced a future of prolonged economic uncertainty.  Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said the voters “made a very brave choice,” and proved “democracy won’t be blackmailed.” By 2018, the country’s growth rate had risen to a modest 1.9%, and the economy was regarded as stable

2016 – The Juno space probe arrives at Jupiter and begins a 20-month survey of the planet

2018 – The First President of Poland’s Supreme Court, Małgorzata Gersdorf, who was appointed in 2014 to a six-year term, showed up for work, defiantly refusing to quit in spite of a controversial new law which effectively purges 27 of the court’s 72 judges. “My presence here is not about politics; I am here to defend the rule of law and to testify to the truth about the line between the constitution and the violation of the constitution,” Gersdorf, holding white roses at the court building’s entrance, said to the protesters gathered out front. Gersdorf and other judges aged 65 or older are being forced to retire under the new law. The measure took full effect the day before, in an ongoing effort by Poland’s ruling right-wing Law and Justice party to exert control over the courts. It has provoked mass street protests and escalated tensions between Poland’s government and the European Union over the rule of law


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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