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The  VANGUARD --   2014

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History is a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies -- Alexis de Tocqueville

Slowly rocking the Max Schmeling Halle -- Craft Beer in Italy

Language is not an abstract construction of the learned, or of dictionary makers, but is something arising out of the work, needs, ties, joys, affections, tastes, of long generations of humanity, and has its bases broad and low, close to the ground. Quote from Noah Webster, US writer & lexicographer (10/16/1758 – 05/28/1843)

Some French Cities HERE (and Belgium)
German and Swiss City links

Images of 1916 coinage, Early Roman Emperors, later Roman era, Byzantine Coinage

Maclet -- A Mystery of Art -- Baseball Cards
More Art -- Sunsets -- Cumberland Falls

The past screams to us, but will we listen ???
The article's oldest link (and comments): HERE

Tour de France -- 2012 -- A Paris Page -- Some Mountains in Southern France -- Austrian Wines -- German wine growing areas: Rheingau Wine region -- Ahr Wines -- Bad Schussenried

Stamp Link -- Engelberg -- Bremen, Hamburg und Hanover --

I was glad when they said unto me, We will go into the house of the Lord
[ from Psalm 122 ] .

All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies [ Psalm 25:10 ].

If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; and in that use, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive. — C.S. Lewis

A modern hymn -- Truth is heavy; therefore, few wear it. -- Midrash Shmuel on Avot: 4

2014 route
July 14th
Place de la Concorde in the rain -- looking North

Placez-vous sur les chemins, regardez, Et demandez quels sont les anciens sentiers, Quelle est la bonne voie; marchez-y, Et vous trouverez le repos de vos âmes !

July 25, 1909: A French aviator, Louis Blériot, made the first crossing of the English Channel from Calais to Dover in a powered-aircraft, winning a £1,000 prize offered by the London Daily Mail. Piloting his Type XI monoplane at an average of 39 miles per hour, Blériot made the trip of 23.2 miles in just over 35 minutes. National Public Broadcasting in the USA (PBS) has presented a program about the event (it is several years old now, but still well worth a view):

The 5¢ Beacon Air Mail Postage-stamp -- July 26, 1928: A new 5¢ airmail rate went into effect August 1, 1928. The purpose of a rate decrease (from 10¢) was to increase the volume of air-shipped mail, thereby increasing the revenue of the private air mail carriers, keeping them in business. Call it the Laffer curve of postage rates. The 5¢ Beacon Air Mail stamp was issued to meet this new rate.

- First Day issued: July 26th -

The beacon design symbolized the new lighted airways that had been put up across the country, reflecting an awareness of safety, vital if the new air mail service was to keep public support. This stamp was, in effect, advertising for the new air mail service and rates. Extra features that were not found on other stamps such as a bi-colored design and an unusual size has led to a wealth of plate and imprint varieties for philatelists. First Day sales were at the Philatelic Agency in Washington, D.C., but the number of First Day covers are exceedingly scarce. This was perhaps because First Day covers issued on July 26 required two 5¢ stamps to cover the existing 10¢ rate, whereas if the collector were willing to wait a week, the August 1st rate would be 5¢ and only one stamp would be necessary. Sure enough, covers from August 1st, the first day of the new rate, are common.

- Error exists ?? -

Why was the 26th chosen for issuance instead of the 1st of August when the rates changed ? My guess is that it had something to do with the fact that the Continental Congress established a postal system for the colonies with Benjamin Franklin as the first postmaster general in Philadelphia on July 26, 1775.

The regular snail-mail was still 2¢ in July of 1928 and would not increase to 3¢ until July 6, 1932 during the heart of the hardship and at the height of deflation. Indeed, on July 8, 1932, the stock market fell to its lowest point during the era. The Great Crash, as it was known, had begun in the autumn of 1929, sparking a decade of economic stagnation known as the Great Depression. What a great time for a rate increase of 50%. Beginning in 2008, we have had another increase during hard times; however, the value of our currency has fallen so much, that the change is barely noticeable (in real purchasing power). An additional Resource: HERE.
July 26th: On this day in 1941 in response to the Japanese occupation of French Indochina, US President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the seizure of all Japanese assets in the United States. This was essentially an act of War. Three years later, the war in the European theatre had begun to wind down (although many lives were still to be lost); and, on July 26, 1944, the Soviet Army entered Lviv, a major city in western Ukraine, liberating it from the Nazis. While on the western front as an aggressive last gasp, the first German V-2 rocket hits the United Kingdom. Most people do not realize that most of these rocket attacks were launched against positions in Belgium. The war ended in Europe before July or even June rolled around again. So on this date in 1945 the grateful British people reward Churchill's great War efforts by removing Winston from power and electing the Labour Party (general election of July 5th). Yet too is Russia rewarded, when the Allies signed the Potsdam Declaration; while on the same day the HMS Vestal sinks, becoming the last major British Royal Navy vessel to slip under the water in the Second World War.

Interestingly, the Navy cruiser USS Indianapolis arrives at an Island called Tinian with parts of a warhead for an atomic weapon that will level downtown Hiroshima. The crew of the ship would not fare well on the return voyage. Arguably the most well known reference to the events that occur on the return voyage can be found in Jaws during a monologue by the late Robert Shaw, whose character Samuel Quint had survived of the Indianapolis sinking. The monologue focuses on the numerous deaths caused by shark attacks after the loss. This soliloquy refers the date of the sinking as the 29th June, when the ship actually sunk on July 30th. The USS Indianapolis is the last major US ship to sink in World War II.

July 27, 82AD: It is reported that Joseph of Arimathea died and was buried in tomb he once lent to Jesus, or so the story goes. Because Jerusalem by then was destroyed as predicted and the Jews outlawed from their homeland by the Romans it is not likely that this tale is correct. See

Others say that Joseph died at Glastonbury, Somersetshire, England on that date An English Tradition recounts Jesus' visit to Somersetshire as a lad and also states that Joseph of Arimathaea built a church here. King Arthur and Guinevere lived and died here, an ancient place of pagan worship. It was home to saints, including Patrick of Irish fame, Dunstan, Benedict, David and Bridget. We need not believe that the Glastonbury legends are records of facts; but the existence of those legends is a very great fact. But then, you only need to remember the greatest of facts, the tomb was empty on that first Resurrection Sunday.

"Wherever a saint has dwelt, wherever a martyr has given his blood for the blood of Christ, There is holy ground, and the sanctity shall not depart from it Though armies trample over it, though sightseers come with guide-books looking over it; From where the western seas gnaw at the coast of Iona, To the death in the desert, the prayer in forgotten places by {next to} the broken imperial column, From this ground springs that which forever renews the earth ...." T.S. Eliot

Glastonbury is one of the places on this earth where the boundaries between history and myth, as well as tradition and legend remain very thin. A visitor today might easily be overwhelmed by the way the town has been taken over by the hucksters of a "new age" -- sometimes thinly veiled, and sometimes an open revival of ancient spiritism that dominated this land before Roman times. A principal reason for the importance of Glastonbury as an English Christian center devolves from the fact that the site represented an ancient religious center of considerable import.

July 27, 1784: Just seven years after the first French daily was published in Paris, Courier De L’Amerique became the first French-language newspaper to be published in the United States. The paper, printed in Philadelphia (PA) served all the many citizens in that fair city of brotherly love who spoke French. It ceased operation on October 26 of that year (or at least the library has no copy of it beyond that date in 1784). L'Imprimerie de Charles Cist, & se distribue chez Boinod & Gaillard, editeurs Danie Boinod and ...???... Gaillard. It had another brief run from le 04 Decembre 1792 - le 22 Fevrier 1793 (again, the source of these dates is from the library copies that remain). One wonders if perhaps another French paper could have been printed in Charlestowne (SC) at about this time ?

July 28, 1609: Admiral George Somers shipwrecks in Bermuda. His ship was on a voyage to Virginia, the British colony founded a few years earlier -- named in tribute to the late Queen, Elizabeth. He and other survivors were presumed dead for nearly a year, but finally improvised a vessel and reached their original destination. William Strachey, secretary of the colony at Jamestowne, Virginia, later sent a letter to England that described the event. His letter is thought by many to have been an inspiration for Shakespeare’s "Tempest."

Somers almost immediately returns to Bermuda, but passes away at Virgineola - a smaller version of the Virginia settlement established on the island. For leadership, courage at sea and other skills Admiral Sir George Somers showed, the islands became the Somers Isles, which is still Bermuda's official alternate name.

The Battle of the Summer Islands (named for Bermuda's alternate name, the Somers or Summer Islands), was a mock-heroic poem penned by the renowned English poet Edmund Waller. It was published in the first edition of his Poems in 1645.   So was the huntsman by the bear oppressed, whose hide he sold before he caught the beast .... It is the line from which we get the economic term Bear Market.

In Pgh for July 4th weekend (2010) Waller did more than write. He sat for Ilchester (Somerset) in the final Parliament under James I, for Chipping Wycombe (Buckinghamshire, which town has had a continuous representative for nearly 710 years) in the first Parliament of Charles I, for Amersham (Chiltern district in Buckinghamshire) in the third Parliament of Charles I and the Short Parliament and for St. Ives (Cambridgeshire -- Kits, Cats, Sacks and Wives; how many to St. Ives) in the Long Parliament. No Parliament was summoned from 1629 to 1640. Waller became a prominent and famous speaker in the House of Commons: at the troubles first outbreak, he took the side of the popular leaders, and took part in the opposition to ship-money. But, by 1642, he was gradually drawn closer to the party of the via media; and his parliamentary career ended, for the time, in 1643, with the discovery of his complicity in a royalist conspiracy, which became known as Waller’s plot.

Banished from England, after being committed briefly to the Tower of London for treason in July, 1643, Waller left for France. He resided in Rouen until his sentence was revoked by Oliver Cromwell in November, 1651. Indeed, the Islands have another fascinating connection with France. The first confirmed visit to Bermuda by a Frenchman was by Captain Russel or Roussel, shipwrecked here sometime between 1560 and 1570. Because of this close encounter and other shipwrecks, the French would call them Isle of Devils

July 28, 1935: Today the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress took wing for the first time (Model 299). Boeing did not get a primary Federal contract (for 200 bombers) because the prototype crashed; however, the US Army Air Corps (later "Air Forces") still was captivated with Boeing's design, so that they ordered thirteen (13) B-17s. The B-17 Flying Fortress overtime evolved through numerous design advances. Barely 20 years after air warfare was introduced over the fields of France, the US would have one of its primary workhorses for World War II. Its primary job became precision daylight bombing in Europe and the plane played a somewhat lesser role in the Pacific.

In somewhat unrelated news, the Battle of Ezra Church, also known as the Battle of Ezra Chapel or the Battle of the Poor House was fought on July 28, 1864, in Fulton County, Georgia. The battle was part of the Atlanta Campaign. Unfortunately for General Hood, he did not surprise the defenders under General Howard, who had predicted such a manœuver. Like so many other examples of officers who faced each other in battle, both men had attended West Point at the same time. So, the northern troops simply awaited Hood's offensive, in trenches behind a hastily built bulwark of logs and rails. The Confederate army attacked, but fell back before the Union's improvised breastwork. The southern forces defeated this day, still managed to keep Howard from reaching the railroad line. In all, about 3,562 men became casualties; 3,000 on the Confederate side and 562 on the Union side. Wikipedia has an English Language entry for this battle, if you want to know more.
July 29, 1786: - The first newspaper west of the Alleghenies was published. The newspaper was founded in 1786 when John Scull and Joseph Hall brought a printing press from Philadelphia and set it up in a small shop in the village which was growing up around Fort Pitt {Pittsburgh}. Originally called The Pittsburgh Gazette, it still is being published, but is now titled The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, having acquired the Pittsburgh Press, the Pittsburgh Post and one guesses a few more along the way.

July 29, 1740: From Ebenezer, an early settlement in the Georgia Colony, John Martin Boltzius recorded in his journal the different types of peaches grown in colonial Georgia:

This year God has very richly blessed our two gardens by the old torn-down cottages with peaches of all kinds, with which we can give joy and refreshment to many adults and children . . . . We did not notice in Germany whether the types of peaches were also as varied as they are here in our gardens. I believe we have over ten different kinds, all of which have a very pleasant, wholesome, and refreshing taste, but different in each fruit. Some kinds come loose from the pit and have various colors, others grow tight around the pit and are either all yellow or yellow and red, or all dark red. Some taste quite sweet, others tangy, others have a wine-like taste and pleasant sharpness, others seem to us to taste like the big plums in Germany and have externally a round, pretty appearance like apples. God be praised for this benefaction! Who could have imagined anything like it a few years ago when we were still in Old Ebenezer! We often compare the old and the present times.

Source: George Fenwick Jones and Don Savelle (ed. and trans.), Detailed Reports on the Salzburger Emigrants Who Settled in America, . . . Edited by Samuel Urlsperger (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1983), Vol. VII, pp. 190-191.

Le 29 juillet 1805: Alexis de Tocqueville est né à Paris.

« Les nations de nos jours ne sauraient faire que dans leur sein les conditions ne soient pas égales; mais il dépend d'elles que l'égalité les conduise à la servitude ou à la liberté, aux lumières ou à la barbarie, à la prospérité ou aux misères. »

The characteristics of the American journalist consist in an open and coarse appeal to the passions of his readers; he abandons principles to assail the characters of individuals, to track them into private life and disclose all their weaknesses and vices.

The personal opinions of the editors have no weight in the eyes of the public. What they seek in a newspaper is a knowledge of facts, and it is only by altering or distorting those facts that a journalist can contribute to the support of his own views.

The pursuit of wealth generally diverts men of great talents and strong passions from the pursuit of power; and it frequently happens that a man does not undertake to direct the fortunes of the State until he has shown himself incompetent to conduct his own. Quotes from Alexis deTocqueville -- More HERE

Many persons in France think that the violence of the press originates in the instability of the social state, in our political passions and the general feeling of uneasiness that consequently prevails; and it is therefore supposed that as soon as society has resumed a certain degree of composure, the press will abandon its present vehemence. For my own part, I would willingly attribute to these causes the extraordinary ascendancy which the press has acquired over the nation; but I do not think that they exercise much influence on its language. The periodical press appears to me to have passions and instincts of its own, independent of the circumstances in which it is placed; and the present condition of America corroborates this opinion. America is perhaps, at this moment, the country of the whole world that contains the fewest germs of revolution; but the press is not less destructive in its principles there than in France, and it displays the same violence without the same reasons for indignation

Another revolution in France -- Révolution des Trois Glorieuses -- Le 27-28-29 juillet 1830: An inept ruler, King Charles X (1757-1836) inspired resentment in the French middle class and its press, especially against ultra-royalist advisers; when he directed his reactionary favorite Jules de Polignac (1780-1847) to form a new ministry, the Chamber of Deputies hotly objected. Charles' angry dismissal of the chamber (1829) turned an attempt to curb a hated functionary into the total collapse of the regime. An 1830 French election revealed even greater opposition in the chamber, and Charles again dismissed it as he and Polignac published the "July Ordinances," which established strong press controls and reduced the electorate. As usual, the Parisians revolted and blockaded the streets on July 27, 1830; among those manning the barricades were army units and former members of the National Guard disbanded in 1827. Charles acted too late in annulling the new ordinances and dismissing Polignac (July 30, 1830); the minister was arrested and condemned to life imprisonment and later (1836) amnestied. Charles fled, then abdicated in favor of a grandson; the rebels, divided into republicans favoring the Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834) and monarchists desiring the conservative Duke of Orléans, Louis-Philippe (1773-1850). They continued to argue among themselves until the dismissed bourgeois legislature declared the throne vacant and proclaimed Louis-Philippe King of the Republic of France. He later claimed for himself the title of Emperor. His ineptness led to the French Revolution of 1848 and the true Second Republic. from

Le 29 juillet 1907 -- naît le mouvement Scouting, d'un mot anglais qui signifie éclaireur: Sur l'île de Brownsea, dans le Dorsetshire, le colonel Robert Baden-Powell, héros de la Guerre des Boers entraîne une vingtaine de jeunes gens à des jeux de piste. Il veut fabriquer des citoyens émérites, épanouis tant au moral qu'au physique. Son idéal connaîtra une fortune prodigieuse. Il sera aussi dévoyé par les partis totalitaires, qui créeront sur le même modèle des mouvements de jeunesse à leur dévotion. {anglais}

July 29, 1977: The Atlanta Braves knuckle-ball hurler, Phil Niekro, struck out four Pittsburgh Pirates in one inning. Niekro became the first pitcher in Braves history (Boston, Milwaukee and Atlanta) to do so. Baseball rules provide that a batter can try to make first base, if a catcher fails to catch the ball on a batter's third strike. In such a case, if the batter reaches first base before the ball arrives, the pitcher will be credited with a strike-out, but the out does not count against the team at bat.

July 30, 2010 -- 11th Annual, System Administrator Appreciation Day: In 1619 at Jamestown, Virginia Colony, the premier representative assembly in the Americas, the House of Burgesses, convenes for the first time. In 1864, Union forces attempt to end the stalemate at Petersburg, Virginia by exploding a large bomb under the Confederate fortifications. The northern troops failed to capitalize on the surprise attack. On 30 July 1945, shortly after it delivered the final portion of the first atomic bomb to the US airfield at Tinian, the Imperial Japanese Navy submarine I-58 torpedoed the USS Indianapolis. It sunk in 12 minutes with great loss of life. In 1975, Union boss, Jimmy Hoffa disappeared from the parking lot of the Machus Red Fox restaurant in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. Saint Ursus (d. 508 AD) of Autissiodorensis (Auxerre) was bishop of that city. He had been a hermit monk at the church of Saint Amator before being elected bishop at the age of 75. It is said he was selected after he had saved the town from a fire thru his prayers. July 30th is his feast day.

The end of July 1945: More to write about the "Indianapolis" incident: The Captain was court-martialed and convicted for the sinking (and loss of nearly 900 men), the only Navy leader tried for a ship loss during the Second World War. Later he was fully exonerated, but he took his own life because of the internal grief and/or guilt he felt. The heavy cruiser USS Indianapolis earned ten battle stars, including one for its participation at Iwo Jima and one for its last engagement during the bombardment of Okinawa in March 1945 during which it was struck by a kamikaze, resulting in 38 casualties (12 fatalities). Captain Charles Butler McVay III, a 1920 Naval Academy graduate and career naval officer who had taken command in November 1944, returned the ship safely to Mare Island in California for repairs, before the mission to Tinian. (a must read)

Thomas Helms, in his book, Ordeal by Sea wrote:

“Father Thomas Michael Conway swam from group to group, never stopping to rest, praying with the men, encouraging those who were frightened, trying to reason with the maddened. His faith and his prayers gave solace to many ... Father Conway, like Ensign Park, Seaman Rich and many others, burned himself out keeping up a constant patrol among the men, ministering to the dying, talking reason into others who had become momentarily deranged and calming the frightened with prayers until all at once he reached the limit of his endurance, and his life drained away.”

On August 2, 1945, Father Conway became the last chaplain to die in combat in this war. He was awarded Purple Heart posthumously.
July 31, 1451: French merchant prince and financier Jacques Cœur (ou Coeur) is arrested upon the order of his King, Charles VII. Cœur is accused of poisoning la maîtresse du roi, Agnès Sorel; but more seriously, for having used his trusted position in the government for personal enrichment, an unheard of practice in France. His arrest resulted in the famous French quote: «A vaillans cuers, riens impossible,» which is a pun on his name. Today the adage may be best translated: Such a valiant heart, it is not possible. Accordingly, for the many services that he had provided to his King, he was not pardoned and the substantial wealth he and his father had gathered was confiscated (1451) -- which forfeiture may explain his fate. Cœur spent more than three years in jail, but finally escaped from prison into Provence. He reached Rome and was honorably received by Pope Nicholas V (1455). Jacques Cœur would die the following year in service to the Pope against the Ottoman Turks.

His Gothic palace, which was once his home, still remains, constructed over a portion of a Gallo-Roman wall that surrounds the city of Bourges. It was a precursor of the mansions of the Renaissance period. The façade on the street side and that of the main building are decorated with Jacques Cœur's coat-of-arms, plus a multitude of sculptures portraying religious themes. The residence includes a barrel-vaulted gallery, painted chapel and hall that housed Turkish-style baths.

July 31, 1777: The Marquis de Lafayette (Marie Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier), a 19-year-old French nobleman, was made a major-general in the American Continental Army. His contributions to the American cause are well-documented. After the War he served France and avoided losing his head over the Révolution, unlike some others (Comte d'Estaing) who had helped America win its freedom. On this same date, just 23 years later, the cornerstone to the United States Mint was placed in Philadelphia. This was also the first Government Services building ever built by the Federal government.

To celebrate both these occasions in 1988, Willie Stargell became the 200th man inducted into Baseball’s Hall of Fame. Mr. Stargell had 475 career homers, twice leading the National League (NL) (48 in 1971, 44 in 1973). He drove in 1540 runs, scored 1195 and had 2232 hits with a lifetime batting average of .282, and Stargell's inspirational leadership contributed greatly to Pittsburgh Pirate "World" championships in 1971 and 1979, years when he shared National League Most Valuable Player honors. The Pirates retired his #8 (team field-shirt number) in 1982.

Placez-vous sur les chemins, regardez, Et demandez quels sont les anciens sentiers, Quelle est la bonne voie; marchez-y, Et vous trouverez le repos de vos âmes !

August 1, 10BC: On this day in Lugdunum or Lyon, Gaul, was born Claudius Cæsar Tiberius Drusus Nero Germanicus, the nephew of Tiberius and grandson of the wife of Augustus. He became emperor after Caligula. Julius Cæsar founded Roman Lugdunum, when he subdued the Gaulois, at the confluence of the Rhône and Saône rivers, overlooking a native celtic village. Modern Lyon encompasses these two towns and much more.

Glastonbury Claudius ruled from 41-54 AD. He built many buildings and public works, for example the harbor at Ostia (ancient port for Rome). He was interested in the judicial system and spent much of his time judging trials. He set in motion the successful conquest of Britain, where the other two attempts by Julius Cæsar and Caligula had failed. Never-the-less, Britain's distance and expense to rule weighed heavily on Roman tax receipts. Claudius died, probably from poison, by the hand of his 4th wife, the mother of Nero.
The BBC's Masterpiece Theatre made the lives of the early Roman rulers highly accessible to the public TV audience. For some years, the third Julian Emperor, known as Tiberius, ran the Roman Empire through Lucius Aelius Sejanus, the head (Prefect) of the Prætorian Guard (Praetorian Præfectus), an elite unit formed first by Augustus for personal protection. Sejanus tried to take too much power, especially after he became Consul. He had made too many enemies and met an untimely end when Tiberius found out about Sejanus' ultimate plot to sieze the throne. A young actor, Patrick Stewart, portrayed Sejanus for several episodes on BBC's classic tale of Roman intrigue -- I, Claudius (1976), named for the first book in a series authored by Robert Graves. Interesting side note: On August 1, 1971 Masterpiece Theatre's 6 Wives of Henry VIII aired on US TV for the first time. On the same day, exactly 10 years later, the rock 'n' role music-video cable channel MTV made its debut. Video Killed the Radio Star, by the Buggles, was the first piece shown.

From we read:

Arviragus, a British King is given Venius Julia, Emperor Claudius' daughter, at peace negotiations in Rome during a six month hiatus of hostilities. Gladys Pomponia Græcina, the sister of Caradoc, Pendragon and Military Dictator of England, marries Aulus Plautius, supreme commander of the Roman forces in England. Gladys-Claudia, the daughter of Caradoc, is not only adopted by Emperor Claudius after her father's defeat, but marries Rufus Pudens, the aide-de-camp of the Roman Commander, Aulus Plautius. Of Caradoc's family, four generations were taken captive to Rome, when he was betrayed by his cousin Aricia, Queen of the Brigantes. Caradoc and his family establish residence at the Palatium Britanicum (Palace of the British) nearby to the Emperor Claudius' home. The Apostle Paul spent his time in Rome at the home of Caradoc's mother or at the Palatium Britanicum, which by then had become a Christian sanctuary. Saint Paul taught the children of Claudia and Pudens, and ordained Caradoc's son, Linus, as first Bishop of Rome; however, they suffer martyrdom under Nero. see also

Also from, we learn more of this history, plus the Roman ties of today's royal family, not to mention the ties to Julia, the sister of Julius Cæsar, grandmother of Augustus Cæsar ( nor even the ties from Cleopatra

It is said that King Arviragus was confirmed in his faith by Joeseph of Arimathea (37AD) As mentioned above, his wife, Venus (Venissa Julia Iceni), was the blood-daughter of Claudius and herself descendant of the founders of Rome and City of Troy. Their children include Queen Boudicca (Boadicea) of the Iceni, who will later lead a revolt against Roman rule (grandmother to King Cloius I (Cœl) "Old King Cole" of Britain). Generatons will pass but her descendant is King Clovis I "The Great" (Chlodovech ) of the Franks, and later Charlemagne, by different children of Clodius, the Long Haired, of the Franks and his consort Basina de Thuringia.

August 2, 216BC: Hannibal Barca of Carthage won his greatest victory over the Romans at Cannæ. Hannibal had seized a grain depot in the small village of Cannæ hoping to lure the Roman forces into battle. Having crossed over the Alps, Hannibal had defeated the Romans at the Trebia River and also at Lake Trasimene. Therefore, the Romans were unwilling to commit any large force into attacking Hannibal. However, Hannibal‘s spies had learned two Roman consuls shared command of the legions and attempted to goad the more impetuous of the two into battle. For the next 120 years Rome and Carthage would fight four wars, known as the Punic Wars. In the end the capital city of Carthage would be destroyed and northern Africa would become a Roman Province. -- Map here toward the bottom of the page.

August 2nd: This date would see the first general civil war break out in France (the Jacquerie 1358); Henri III, is assassinated by Jacques Clément (stabbed August 1, 1589); Napoléon Bonaparte becomes Consul for Life (1802) and l'Empire has begun. England becomes the protector of Egypt in 1882; the first day of hostilities takes place along the border (at Belfort) between France and Germany (1914) and the Allies set the new German borders after the end of World War II at Potsdam (1945).

Notable birth on August 2nd: At the City of Colmar, 1834, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, in the disputed Alsace region of France. Best known as the sculptor of the Statue of Liberty he also designed, inter alia, the Lion of Belfort. Bartholdi passed away October 4, 1904 in Paris.

Isabella & Columbus August 3, 1492: Christopher Columbus sets sail from Spain looking for the Indies. In part driven by a quest for gold and glory, he also saw himself as a missionary. Columbus departed Palos, Spain, in the Santa Maria, with the Pinta and the Nina on a voyage that would take him to the present-day Americas. A forgotten Italian, Christopher Columbus, died in Spain at age 55. Columbus, then impoverished, initially was interred within the monastery at Valladolid. Reports that he stopped moving after his demise are greatly exaggerated. More HERE

August 3, 1914: Today marks the third day of the European Great War, known better today as World War I, which began with the assassination of the Archduke of the Empire of Austria-Hungry at Sarajevo on June 28th by a Serbian. This drew Russia into the fray as a fellow-slavic nation coming to the aid of another. Germany soon would declare war on Russia on August 1st and on France on the 3rd. Later declarations and hostilities would follow Independence for the Balken states had ended. Once separate kingdoms, after World War I were merged into a newly formed Yugoslavia. It was not until the collapse of the Soviet Union and the period of chaos that followed, that some of the nations reemerged.

Hostilities broke out near Belfort on August 2nd; but, Germany attacked through neutral Belgium (as it did again in 1939). The French had prepared for a traditional assault through the Ardennes and Lorraine. In a few weeks, hundreds of thousands lay dead. In a month, the French capital was moved from Paris to Bordeaux as the Germans now threatened the city of light.

August 4, 1792: In contravention of the
Declaration of the Rights of Man, by order of progressive revolutionaries, all houses of worship are closed in the Republic of France on this day. Just three years earlier, the upper segments of society had been forced to give up their privileges; and, there were other changes, too, including the abolition of mandatory tithes (10%) to the Catholic Church. The year of Terror was just ahead as the Révolution continued. Some churches would reopen as temples dedicated to humanism, some would be destroyed, others just desecrated and / or put to secular use -- many later reopened as Parish churches in the 1800's.
August 5, 642: King Oswald's death came in battle. The pagan ruler, Penda of Mercia (a kingdom in what is today the English Midlands), who had earlier defeated Edwin, raised an army and met Oswald with overwhelming forces. Surrounded by enemies, Oswald prayed one last prayer -- for God's mercy on the souls of his soldiers. He was considered a martyr because he died at the hand of a pagan while defending a Christian nation. He was named a Saint, set-apart for God's work. See our article on Saint Aidan below. Penda was the last great pagan warrior-king among the Anglo-Saxons. Higham wrote that his destruction sounded the death-knell of English paganism as a political ideology and public religion. After Penda's death, the Mercian tribes were converted to Christianity, and all three of Penda's reigning sons ruled as Christians. Five daughters became Saintes.

August 5, 1789: Full of expectation, elected members of the government of a now United States were in session and working in a hot, muggy New York City. For the first time, the Senate refused to confirm a presidential appointee, ignoring the budding concept of senatorial courtesy, The first US President, George Washington, had nominated Benjamin Fishbourn to the post of Naval Officer for the Port of Savannah without clearing his choice with Georgia's two senators. Favoring another candidate, who was a member of their own political circle, these two men engineered Officer Fishbourn's rejection. Two days later, the Washington conveyed his irritation to the Senate. Permit me to submit to your consideration whether on occasions where the propriety of Nominations appear questionable to you, it would not be expedient to communicate that circumstance to me, and thereby avail yourselves of the information which led me to make them, and which I would with pleasure lay before you.

Contemporaneously, the reports of savage violence that broke out in France during July, 1789, shocked Thomas Jefferson, who was at his post as the American representative to France; but, reactionary conflict did not undermine his belief in the essential rightness of the cause or the ultimate triumph of its progressive principles. He remained optimistic about the prospect for an enduring and peaceful political settlement. He seemed oblivious (or at least silent) to the deep, irreconcilable and anti-religious class hatred that drove the mobs. Repeatedly, Jefferson expressed a belief that the worst of the slaughter had passed. The future looked bright to him. He wrote on August 5, 1789, the National Assembly [of popular representatives] are wise, firm and moderate. They will establish the English constitution, purged of its numerous and capital defects. Jefferson also began to express his belief in the benefits of periodic revolutions -- at generational intervals of about 19 years.,%20Jefferson,%20American%20Sphinx.htm

According to the US Treasury, also on this date (August 5, 1789), the brigantine Persis, which arrived at the port of New York from Leghorn, Italy (Livorno is a port city astride the Ligurian Sea on the western edge of Tuscany), had the honour of being the first vessel to be affected by the Tariff Act of July 4, 1789. The duty collected amounted to $774.71 (which was worth about 50 ounces in gold coin). The US Customs Service virtually provided the country its only direct source revenue from 1789 to 1913, until the 16th Amendment to the US Constitution, the reason for the income tax being a popular revenue source today.

The land of Persis was located in what is now southern Iran. Persians settled the area as early as the 8th century B.C. Alexander the Great gained control of Persis, and after his death it became part of the Seleucid Kingdom. About 290 B.C. Persis regained independence. Coinage during this period reflected Greek heritage, but inscriptions were in Aramaic script. Sometime between c. 250 and 223 B.C., the Seleucids took control once more. King Mithradates II later incorporated Persis as a sub-kingdom of Parthia. Under Parthian domination, the coins and depicted rulers assumed a Parthian style. The last King of Persis, Artaxerxes (Artâkhshatra-Ardshir), defeated the Parthians in the 3rd century AD and founded the Sassanian Empire. He also established Zoroastrianism as the state religion. He should not be confused with Artaxerxes (meaning "righteous ruler") who was a Persian king who initially obstructed the rebuilding of the Temple at Jerusalem (Ezra 4:7). Fourteen years later, he permitted Nehemiah to return and rebuild Jerusalem.
Raphael -- picture sometimes will not load A great light was seen -- August 6th -- C'est sa fête -- Transfiguration du Seigneur: Cette fête commémore un événement que rapportent les évangélistes Marc, Matthieu et Luc. Jésus, un jour, se fit accompagner par ses disciples Jacques, Jean et Pierre au sommet d'une montagne. Et là, les trois disciples virent le Christ dans un vêtement blanc resplendissant, entouré de deux hommes dans lesquels ils reconnurent les prophètes de l'Ancien Testament Moïse et Élie. Une nuée descendit du ciel et une voix proclama: « Celui-ci est mon Fils bien-aimé, c'est lui qu'il faut écouter ».

Sainte lumière, splendeur du Père, louange à toi, Jésus Christ !
Venez, crions de joie pour le Seigneur,
acclamons notre Rocher, notre salut !
Allons jusqu'à lui en rendant grâce,
par nos hymnes de fête acclamons-le !
Psaume 94 (d'invitatoire: v. 1-2)
Les cieux ont proclamé sa justice,
et tous les peuples ont vu sa gloire.
Tu es, Seigneur, le Très-Haut sur toute la terre,
tu domines de haut tous les dieux. -- Psaume 96

About a week after His sojourn in Cæsarea Philippi, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John and led them to a high mountain apart, where He was transformed before their eyes. Saints Matthew and Mark express this phenomenon by the word metemorphothe, which the Latin Vulgate renders as transfiguratus est. The Synoptic gospels more clearly explain the full meaning of the word by adding his face did shine as the sun and his garments became white as snow, according to the Vulgate, or as light, according to the original Greek text -- the luminosity coming from within -- a glimpse of the divine nature.

In the fourth century AD, Mount Thabor, the acknowledged as the scene of Christ's Transfiguration (near Nazereth), became a place of pilgrimage and was surmounted by a basilica and several churches and chapels. In 1101 the Benedictine monks rebuilt these edifices and constructed a fortified abbey, later destroyed the Saracens (1187). They in turn built (1210-12) a large fortress that the Crusaders attacked in vain (1217). The plateau of Mount Thabor is now occupied by Franciscans and Schismatic Greek monks.

Au moment de commencer sa montée vers sa Passion, Jésus prend avec lui Pierre, Jacques et Jean et les emmène sur une montagne, le mont Thabor selon la tradition. Là, il est transfiguré devant eux et reçoit du Père ce témoignage: "Celui-ci est mon Fils bien-aimé." Au jardin des Oliviers, au soir de son arrestation, ce sont les mêmes, Pierre, Jacques et Jean, que Jésus prendra avec lui. Ce n'est pas une coïncidence. Ceux qui allaient le voir défiguré ("il n'avait plus figure humaine" avait annoncé le prophète Isaïe) ce sont eux qui devaient, auparavant, l'avoir vu transfiguré: le Jésus Fils de Dieu est le même que le Jésus crucifié. La fête de la Transfiguration est très ancienne dans l'Orient chrétien. Elle fut très tôt fixée au 6 août, en plein été (Le 19 août, c'est la fête de la Transfiguration pour l'église orthodoxe russe). Au Xe siècle, elle devint même, par décision de l'empereur, fête chômée dans tout l'empire byzantin. En Occident, après avoir été longtemps fête locale, elle fut constituée fête universelle après la victoire qui stoppa l'avance turque en 1456. La date liturgique de sa célébration fut choisie d'après la pratique des églises orientales. Avec le Baptême du Christ, c'est une fête de théophanie, c'est-à-dire de manifestation du Christ comme Fils de Dieu. Elle est célébrée en ce jour par l'église d'Occident et tous les Orientaux byzantins, syriens et coptes. L'église arménienne la reporte au dimanche suivant. see also

August 7, 1928: The vanishing dollar, or more correctly, the new shrinking bill. Paper money, one third smaller than previous issues, began to be released by the U.S. Treasury Department. The $1 denomination of 1928 would be worth about $11-20 in terms of today's purchasing power. $100 in common circulated US Gold Coins in 1928 would be worth at least 80 times as much ($8000) in 2011.

United States Note & Gold-backed Note

History is full of Irony August 8, 1792: If peace cannot be maintained with honor, it is no longer peace. -- Lord John Russell for whom the Russell Square was named. For those of you who have forgotten, that was where one of the London bombs went off on July 7, 2005. John Russell was born on August 8, 1792, the third son of the sixth Duke of Bedford. Russell went to the Westminster School and the University of Edinburgh. As prime minister, his government's efforts to prevent widespread starvation from the Irish potato famine of 1846-1847 were ineffective. During this first term (1846-1852), he helped pass legislation limiting working hours in factories in the Factory Act of 1847, and was responsible for the passing of the Public Health Act of 1848. This ministry also ended restrictions on colonial trade by repealing the Navigation Acts in 1849.

August 8, 1945: President Truman signed the United Nations Charter; in the meantime, the Soviet Union had declared war against Imperial Japan (and launched Operation August Storm against the Japanese in China). It established a communist-style peoples' republic in North Korea. In addition, the U.S had devastated Hiroshima:

August 9-near Paris, 1754: Pierre Charles L’Enfant, an architect, engineer, American Revolutionary War officer, was born at Anet (near Dreux) in the province of Eure-et-Loir. Today's chief attraction there is the Château d'Anet was built in the middle of the 16th century by Henry II. for Diana of Poitiers. Near it is the plain of Ivry-la-Bataille, where soon to be King Henry IV defeated the armies of the Catholic League on March 14, 1590. But I digress.

L’Enfant planned the layout of the District of Columbia (City of Washington, the Nation's Capital). L'Enfant was wounded while leading troops in the attack on British-held Savannah (9 October 1779). He was taken to Charleston, S.C. to recover. Leaving his sick-bed, L'Enfant participated in the defense of the city during the British siege in 1780. He was taken prisoner when the city surrendered on 12 May 1780. L'Enfant was not released until Rochambeau arranged for his exchange in January 1782. Returning to Philadelphia in May 1782, l'Enfant was breveted Major in the American Army. He died June 14, 1825, and is now buried in Arlington National Cemetery (1909).
August 9, 1945: When the atom bomb destroyed Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, it somehow spared a building only eight blocks away from ground zero. In it were living eight Jesuits who were unharmed by the blast, its heat or radiation. The Christian Community of Nagasaki fared worse on August 9th.

So it was that the city in which St. Mary’s Cathedral stood, became ground zero for the second atomic bomb dropped on Japan. The massive explosion decimated the largest Christian community in Japan in a matter of seconds, unlike the small mission that was spared in Hiroshima by an apparent miracle. The Japanese Christians were only about 1% of the total nation's population, but most of them lived in the Nagasaki area. see also

On August 9, 1945, as was the usual practice, Catholic and Protestant chaplains blessed the crew of an airplane just before it took off. This aircraft left from Tinian Island carrying a bomb named Little Boy. The target was Kokoro on the Japanese mainland. The plane arrived over Kokoro, but fog prevented the crew from clearly seeing the target. The plane moved on to the secondary target, Nagasaki. The city also experienced fog that morning, but a brief clearing allowed the crew to zero in on the most distinct building in town, a Cathedral.

Nagasaki top left-Hiroshima bottom right Christianity took hold in Japan during the age of European exploration. That period came to an abrupt, bloody end. On July 25, 1587, Japanese Shogun, Hideyoshi, banned Christianity and ordered all European Christians to leave. The government followed-up the edict with executions, including a heinous massacre at Nagasaki (1597). It took other actions which ended western contact; but, it seems that during more than 250 years without priests or outside Christian communication (1600-1865), the Japanese Christian community became a vital remnant in Nagasaki of 30,000 baptized believers. Japanese society had remained unaware of their existence.

When news spread about these Kakure Kirihitan, after Admiral Perry opened Japan to trade, there was another persecution by the government, but it was soon stilled by pressure from the West. In 1894, the Japanese Christians for the first time had permission to build a church. They chose a site on the hill in Nagasaki where the martyrs of the original Nagasaki community had been crucified in 1597. After 23 years of building, Urakami Tenshudo Cathedral was dedicated in 1917. from

... there is a sound of crying, weeping and bitter sorrow;
Rachel weeping for her children;
she will not be comforted because they are no more [Jeremiah 31:15].

Could the bombing of Nagasaki have been avoided? Today, historians have all the secret intercepts and US analyses that affected this decision. After Hiroshima, the Japanese military leaders did not see their situation as hopeless. They were not seeking to surrender unconditionally, but pursuing a negotiated end to the war that would preserve as much power as possible. Even the next day, after Nagasaki was demolished, August 10th, Japan announced its willingness to surrender to Allies; but it still clung to its proviso that the sovereign status of the nation and Emperor Hirohito remain unchanged. This old order had intended to fight on, thinking that an invasion (tentatively planned for November against Kyushu) would have too high a casualty rate for the American public. It was only then that the Emperor personally intervened. In face of mounting Japanese civilian losses, further slaughter became unthinkable. Moreover, in counterbalance, some estimates today judge that between one-quarter and one-half million civilians were dying each month outside Japan from the effects of Japanese occupation. Even after his intervention, there was an aborted military coup that failed the night before Hirohito announced his decision to his people. See Frank, Richard B. Why Truman Dropped the Bomb, The Weekly Standard, August 8, 2005 [Vol.10 #44] pp. 20-24.

Recent information suggests that Japan was the second nation to become a nuclear power !!!  A few days before the end of the War the Japanese exploded a small atomic device on a small island in what is today North Korea. That area is off limits today. It is reported that the bomb factory was located in the same country, that it was dismantled by the Russians in 1945 and production equipment taken to the Soviet Union. See also One more item to consider:

During the {6 week} Nanking Massacre {1937}, the Japanese committed a litany of atrocities against innocent civilians, including mass execution, raping, looting, and burning. It is impossible to keep a detailed account of all of these crimes. However, from the scale and the nature of these crimes as documented by survivors and the diaries of the Japanese militarists, the chilling evidence of this historical tragedy is indisputable. (Emperor knew all about this)

August 10, 70: Military forces of the Roman Empire, sent by the Emperor (Titus Flavius Vespasianus) to put down a rebellion in the Holy Land, break through the walls of the City of Jerusalem and destroy the Temple. Some have said that the event occurred on the same day of the year as an earlier destruction of Solomon's Temple by Babylonians in 586BC. The rebellion had begun during the last years of Nero's reign, and it was not until Vespasian could restore order at home that he could turn his attention back east. It is estimated that as many as one million Jews died in the Great Revolt against Rome. When people today speak of the almost two-thousand-year span of Jewish homelessness and exile, they are dating it from the failure of the revolt and the destruction of the Temple.

{Vespasian's general and later Rome's next emperor} Titus retired into the tower of Antonia, and resolved to storm the temple the next day, early in the morning, with his whole army, and to encamp round about the holy house; but, as for that house, God had for certain long ago doomed it to the fire; and now that fatal day was come, according to the revolution of ages; it was the tenth day of the month Lous [Av], upon which it was formerly burnt by the king of Babylon.

* * *

{One may} comfort himself with this thought, that it was fate that decreed it to be, which is inevitable, both as to living creatures and about works and places also. However, one cannot but wonder at the accuracy of this period thereto relating; for the same month and day were now observed, as I said before, wherein the holy house was burned formerly by the Babylonians. [Flavius Josephus, Wars of the Jews, The Complete Works of Josephus {translated by William Whiston}, (Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1960), pp 580-581.] -- see links HERE

Is it not true that history has seen played out few original stories, but has suffered many, many copies: Pundits, Prophets and Politicians shouting, PEACE, PEACE, when there can be no peace; assuring all of prosperity, plenty of good things and a continued possession of property, when in a short time, none of these promises should prevail; but, sudden, utter destruction would come upon them [from 1 Thessalonians 5:3].

Jeremiah 8:11 -- They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. Peace, peace, they say, when there can be no peace. {When all is sound in a nation's moral state of being, so all will be peace regarding its political well-being (cf. Jer 4:10; 8:11; 14:13; 23:17; Eze 13:5, 10; 22:28)}.

Jeremiah 14:13 -- But I said, "Alas, Sovereign LORD! The prophets keep telling them, You will not see the sword or suffer famine. Indeed, I will give you lasting peace in this place."

Ezekiel 13:10 -- Because they lead my people astray, saying, Peace, when there is no peace, and because, when a flimsy wall is built, they cover it with whitewash {perhaps an allusion to whitewashed tombs as well as the cover-up so prevalent in contemporary politics of the time}

The date was August 10th or 29th. The Temple of Jerusalem burned after a nine-month Roman siege. The Temple was destroyed by Rome’s 10th Legion, the Jews in that place were mostly slaughtered, the rest were exiled and the whole city destroyed (September 1st -- later it was rebuilt as a Roman town).

. . . not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down. More HERE

"On the tenth day of the fifth month, which was in the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, Nebuzaradan the captain of the bodyguard, who was in the service of the king of Babylon, came to Jerusalem. And he burned the house of the Lord [the Temple of Solomon], the king's house, and all the houses of Jerusalem; even every large house he burned with fire [Jeremiah 52:12-13]."

August 10, 843 -- The first Treaty of Verdun: Brothers Lotharius I, Louis le Germanique and Charles le Chauve, all children of Charlemagne, divide his kingdom, consisting of eastern France, western Germany and points in between. This division would result in a European wars for the next 1100 plus years. For example look at what happened to Alsace and places like Belfort.

The Carolingians, under Pepin's son, Charlemagne, had annexed all of southern Germany and the lands in the north and northeast, held by the Saxons. Charlemagne, crowned emperor in 800AD by Pope Leo III, patterned his court after the late Roman Empire. He ruled his Holy Roman Empire from Aachen (the French still call the city Aix-la-Chapelle), which is today in Germany, close by the Dutch Border. The official work of his court was done in Latin; however, the day - to - day language (in the east) congealed into what has evolved into Hoch Deutsch today. Why not French? Because, upon his death the empire split into three kingdoms. The west eventually became France and the romantic (ne c'est pas) language base of Latin prevailed. Indeed, even in 800AD the language between the western and the eastern portions of the empire showed marked differences. So much so, that the treaty named after Virodunensis (Verdun) in 843AD had to be written in two languages.

Otto I, an old-Saxon chief, emerged as the King of East Francia by 962AD. He became the leader of the Holy Roman Empire {Römischen Reich}, an official designation {Rede} which remained in use, and in German hands, for another nine centuries. Toward the end of that time period, the words Reich, Reiches or Reichs were used without any other direct attributes, still signifying however, a continuation of the empire from the previous Millennium. Frankfurt became the traditional site for electing and crowning emperors of the German Reich.

 St-Laurent is one of the oldest churches in Grenoble August 10, 1755: Under the orders of Charles Lawrence, and in violation of a treaty, Britain begins to forcibly deport the Acadians from Nova Scotia to its thirteen Colonies to the south. Interestingly, this is also the feast day of Saint Lawrence (Laurentius). He became one of the seven deacons of ancient Rome serving under Pope Sixtus II, who were martyred during the persecution of Valerian in 258. Lawrence is believed to have been born in Spain, at Huesca, a town in Aragon near the foot of the Pyrenees. At the beginning of the month of August, 258, the emperor Valerian issued an edict commanding that all bishops, priests, and deacons should immediately be put to death.

Sixtus was captured on August 6, 258, at the cemetery of Saint Callixtus, while celebrating the liturgy. His execution and that of his staff followed soon after. According to Catholic tradition, Laurentius was the final martyr, left alive to turn over the Churches' riches to the authorities. Lawrence hid or gave it all away. The Holy Grail is a principal relic that Lawrence sent to his parents in northern Aragon. The family eventually entrusted the sacred chalice to the monastery of San Juan de la Peña, which became core of spiritual strength for the emerging kingdom of Aragon. While the Holy Chalice's exact journey through the centuries is well-disputed, it is generally accepted that the chalice he sent has been venerated and preserved by a number of monks and monasteries through the ages. Today the Holy Grail is venerated in a special chapel in the Catholic Cathedral of Valencia, Spain.

two saints in NYC

August 10, 1864: The artillery bombardment of Atlanta escalated. At 5 o'clock in the afternoon Union batteries began firing new rifled cannon. The range and accuracy of the rifled cannon had startled the world. A 30-pounder (4.2-inch) Parrott had an amazing carry of 8,453 yards with 80-pound hollow shot; the notorious Swamp Angel that fired on Charleston in 1863 was a 200-pounder Parrott mounted in the marsh 7,000 yards from the city. But ironically, despite the fire power, rifles and smoothbores could destroy only bricks and mortar, not earthworks. ARTILLERY THROUGH THE AGES

In Atlanta each Union weapon fired every five minutes. After Sherman complained about not hearing the guns fire, the frequency of shelling increased. That night, Sherman wrote General Howard, saying: Let us destroy Atlanta and make it a desolation. {cf Ezekiel 35: 1-9 (Edom to be destroyed)} In the meantime, In the meantime, even as the sword of destruction seemed suspended over the city, elsewhere life went on. For instance, in Saint Francis' city, Samuel Clemens was observing: A runaway buggy (at any rate the horse attached to it was running away and the buggy was taking a good deal of interest in it) came into collision with a dray, yesterday, in Montgomery street, and the dray was not damaged any to speak of. San Francisco Daily Morning Call

August 11, 1789: France was in the midst of full redesign. On this date the Decree of the National Assembly Abolishing the Feudal System, was formally issued (approved during the famous night session of 4–5 August 1789). The National Assembly also decreed that a medal be struck in memory of the recent grave and important deliberations for the welfare of France, and that a Te Deum should be chanted in gratitude in all the parishes and the churches of France. It also solemnly proclaimed the King, Louis XVI, the Restorer of French Liberty, by reason of his accession to its actions. On the same date Marat, the media relations arm of the la Révolution française, opened his first freedom advisor, the moniteur patriotique [à Paris], a friend of some of the people he surely was, a martyr he would become in less than 4 years.

August 11, 1802 -- Missa "Loquébar:" Today is the traditional historical feast of Saint Philomena. The tomb of this virgin martyr was unknown until found in 1802 in the Roman catacombs. The Providence of many miracles made the rediscovery of Saint Philomena’s remains famous. The cult of the young Sainte spread with an extraordinary rapidity. She has received such exceptional homage that she can be placed in the first ranks of the virgin martyrs whom the Church venerates. The Holy Curé of Ars, Saint John Mary Vianney, whose feast is celebrated two days previous called her his dear little Saint and performed wonders, invoking her name.

The feast day of Bishop, Martyr and Saint Alexander, the charcoal maker, also is celebrated on August 11th. This is appropriate considering what Sherman was doing in Atlanta on this day in 1864. St. Alexander suffered death by fire in the persecution of Trajan Decius. A total war kind of guy at home, Decius proved himself less than apt when dealing with Rome's Germanic foes, than with the Christians whom he roasted. His death in battle may have appeared heroic, but it was unnecessary and his final campaign unsuccessful. This best sums up Decius Trajan's reign.

August 12, 1781: Robert Mills, well-known architect and engineer, was born in Charleston SC. A proponent of Classic Revival, his designs include the Washington Monument, the National Portrait Gallery and the U.S. Treasury Building. Mills apprenticed, if you will, under James Hoban, President Jefferson (with whose family he lived for a time) and Benjamin Henry Latrobe -- America's early and great architects. It was Latrobe who turned Hoban's simple home design into the White House. See generally: Indeed, Latrobe was the first fully trained architect to work and teach in America and Mills was one of his first students.

August 13, 1961: The German city of Berlin became permanently divided. Soviet forces in East Germany, sealed off the open border, between the city's eastern and western sectors, in order to halt the growing flight of refugees, leaving the oppression and misery of the east. Two days later, work began on the Berlin Wall. The wall would remain until November 9, 1989. Read the account at: The nation dedicated a monument to the 255 people who died crossing the Berlin Wall on August 13, 1998 {found at the corner of Ackerstraße and Bernauer Straße}.

August 14, 1784: The Russian Empire invades what we today call Alaska. Grigori Shelekhov, a Russian fur trader, establishes the premier Russian settlement. Shelekhov's company was the nucleus for the Russian-American Company, which was granted a monopoly several years after his death (a colonial trading company, chartered by Czar Paul I in 1799). The primary shareholders were members of the Czarist family. The charter granted the sole trading privileges in Russian America, which included the Aleutian Islands, Alaska, and the territory down to 55° N lat. (a second charter, granted in 1821, extended its domain to 51°).

The first site was on Kodiak Island at beautiful Three Saints Bay. But, a hidden danger lurked there:

"... in 1788 on July 11th, here on Kodiak Island, we had a big earthquake and some thought that the earth would collapse. The earthquake was so strong that one could not stand on his feet. We did not have time to recover from this earthquake when a flood came from the sea. We had a deluge in our harbor, and at that time every man was looking for a safe place to save his life. The flood did a lot of damage. First, my barabora (half sunken hut) was flooded and the merchandise was carried away as were other small structures and the palisade. In your garden all of the soil and vegetation were washed entirely away and at this place water brought in gravel and dug holes in the ground. The raise of the level of water was almost up to the windows in your room. However, the flood lasted only for a very short time, there were two large waves and the rest of them were minor. After this the earth was shaking every day for a month or longer. It was shaking two or three times a day and even more often. Since the time of the earthquake, our place near the harbor has subsided."

Fort Ross was founded in 1812 by the Russian-American Company (11 miles northwest of today's town of Jenner on the Sonoma Coast), The Russian-American Company supported a number of outposts, mostly in Alaska. But the company's ships made frequent forays south -- sometimes as far as Baja California -- in search of sea otter, seal and sea lion pelts. Fort Ross served as a staging area for sea hunts, as well as a source of food stuffs for the Alaska settlements. The Fort Ross outpost was closed in 1841 and sold to John Sutter (who built a mill one day). Thus, one might say the Russians were sitting on a gold mine and failed to notice it.

The Chapel at Roncesvalles 
Pays Basques August 15, 778: The Times (were it in business) might run this headline: Rumble at Roncesvalles -- Rebellious Basques Belt our Boy Charlie, but the event represents so much more, as recounted in La Chanson de Roland. Le 15 août -- une expédition militaire en Espagne (l'arrière-garde de l'armée de Charlemagne) est défaite au col de Roncevaux, dans les Pyrénées occidentales, par des montagnards basques (Suatilie) --

The chronicles of the Carolingian dynasty of the Francs (Eginhard: Vita Caroli Magni) merely report that the Basques pushed aside some rear-guard defenses in mid-August 778AD. Charles, King of the Francs, had not become Charles the Great (Charlemagne), Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire (Christmas 800AD). He was in Spain for political reasons; his aims were not total liberation, but only to help remove an unfriendly emir. The Christians of Spain, as in any Moslem country, had protégé status (dhimmi in Arabic), which obligated them to pay heavy taxes; but, there was little sympathy for open rebellion against all the foreign occupiers (the Moslems had been there only for about 70 years). Conditions changed and pressure on the German border (pesky Saxons) caused Charles to leave through a pass in the Pyrénées near Roncesvalles. Some of the Basques take advantage of the situation and plundered a supply column in the rearguard of the army. Three hundred years later the troubadors have perfected an epic poem for this seemingly small event in French history. Although apparently fruitless, the intervention of Charles in Spain begins the Reconquista, the reconquest of the Iberic peninsula by the Christian faith.

             Ten snow-white mules then ordered Marsilies,
90  	     Gifts of a King, the King of Suatilie.
    	Bridled with gold, saddled in silver clear;
    	     Mounted them those that should the message speak,
     	In their right hands were olive-branches green.
    	     Came they to Charles, that holds all France in fee,
95  	     Yet cannot guard himself from treachery.

The Roncevaux pass on the border in Spanish Navarre is also on the important Compostelle pilgrimage route (chemin de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle). The Suèves, Vandales, Wisigoths et Alains were there in the 5th century, too, seeking their prey as they entered into the Valle Arce.

Le 15 août: In a strange twist of events a Corsican named Napoleone Buonaparte was born nearly a 1000 years later in 1769. Also on the same date in 1057, Macbeth, King of Scotland, was slain at the Battle of Lumphanan, by Malcolm Canmore. Scotish King Duncan I had been killed in 1040 by Macbeth, one of his thanes. Duncan had ruled for 17 years. Macbeth, in turn, was killed by Duncan's son, Malcolm after 17 years. Macbeth, made famous by Shakespeare, lived in Angus County, Scotland at a time of change in the British Isles - Norman rule. Given at Arbroath Abbey in Angus, on the sixth day of April 1320, the Declaration of Arbroath was seminal in its eloquent plea for the liberty of man. It affirmed Scotland's Nobles' allegiance to Robert the Bruce as their ruler and proclaimed the right of the Scottish nation to self-determination, contrary to recent history. Lantern of the North, the Elgin Cathedral, in MacBeth's homeland -- Moray Scotland.

But MacBeth lived nearly 300 years before that time at Glamis Castle. In 1372 the Glamis estate was granted to John Lyon for his services to Robert II, the first Stewart King of Scots. Four years later, Lyon married the King's daughter and was subsequently knighted. After his father was murdered, the second Sir John Lyon inherited Glamis. He married the great granddaughter of Robert II and began building the current structure, which has been much remodeled since then. The mother of the present English Queen was born and raised at Glamis.

August 15th became "V-J Day" for the Allies in 1945, a day after Japan agreed to surrender unconditionally. A Woodstock Music and Art Fair opened in upstate New York on this day in 1969. Some 400,000 plus persons gathered at Max Yasgur’s dairy farm in the Bethel hamlet of White Lake, N.Y. to listen to some music from Joan Baez; Country Joe MacDonald and the Fish; Crosby, Stills and Nash {sans Young}; the Creedence Clearwater Revival; Grateful Dead; The Jimi Hendrix Experience; the Jefferson Airplane; Big Brother and the Holding Company featuring Janis Joplin; Santana; Canned Heat; the Who and others, like Ten Years After, whose American debut occurred there.

And 10 Years Before: HYDE PARK, NY -- The other day the Peiping Radio broadcast a statement calling for the abolition of all U.S. military bases in Laos, and it is discouraging and unfortunate that such misleading information should be spread.

Our government assures us that we have no military bases in Laos. Laos, however, is allied in the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization with France, which has an air base at Seno in Central Laos. And there is only a small caretaker group of French troops there. We do have, I understand, some specialists for training purposes to help train the Laos army.

But, according to another story which I read, the troubles that have broken out in Laos are caused by the troops of a young fellow-traveler prince whom North Vietnam is supporting.

This is all so far away that it is difficult to know what is truthful and what is not. And, of course, it is easy for the United States and the Soviet Union and Peiping governments to accuse each other of inciting the difficulties that arise between different factions within Laos.

One can only hope that the Laotians can work out their difficulties and concentrate primarily on preserving their own liberties, which are threatened by their own inner division more than by any outside desire to control their country.

One almost wishes that the President would stop giving to the press ahead of time what he intends to say to Premier Khrushchev.... from My Day: {August 15, 1959}

Le 15 août: Assomption la Vierge Marie, mère de Jésus-Christ, serait morte à Éphèse. Selon le dogme de l'Assomption, elle a été immédiatement enlevée au ciel. «L'Immaculée Mère de Dieu, Marie toujours vierge, une fois achevé le cours de sa vie terrestre, a été assumée (ou élevée) corps et âme à la gloire céleste», énonce l'encyclique de Pie XII, du 1er novembre 1950, entérinant ainsi la place à part de Marie dans l'humanité. Le vœu de Louis XIII -- Déclaration du Roi par laquelle Sa Majesté déclare qu’elle a pris la Très Sainte et Glorieuse Vierge pour protectrice spéciale de son royaume.

A droit -- le monastère de la Sainte-Vierge (1512), surnommé Hadjgadar, est conservés à trois kilomètres en dehors de la ville, Suceava (Soutchava), sur une colline, où chaque année, le 15 août (pour la fête de la Saint-Vierge), on organise un pèlerinage et un service liturgique.

August 15, 1938: Romans-sur-Isère / Romans d'Isèra rests the heart of the rolling hills of the Département of Drôme (au cœur de la Drôme des Collines à la proximité de la gare Valence-TGV) retains its notoriety because of its architecture. The Collégiale Saint-Barnard comes to mind, along with the town's many extant hôtels particuliers from the 15th and 16th centuries (associated with textiles) that blend italian renaissance and flamboyant gothic styles. Interestingly, the city has an extensive archives on its historical resources: This Web-based Archives et Patrimoine de Romans is still under construction, but its many pictures, alone, are worth the visit.

Barnard was the bishop of Vienne en Isère, who founded Romans and an Abbey circa 837-8 (abbaye bénédictine), and the village gained promenance through the establishment of a collégiale there named after him. It remains a fine example of mixed Romanesque and Gothic architecture. In addition six much more modern windows by the artists Georg Ettl and Thomas Vitraux complement the structure with scenes from St. John's Apocalypse. Barnard was canonized in the 10th Century. The whole abbey was reconstructed several times after invasions and fires. The inside was redecorated several times, when ravaged by the excesses of the French Revolution and Wars of Religion. The Carolingian bishop Saint Bernard, not the one of Clairvaux, was venerated at Romans-sur-Isère and the site was the subject of pilgrimages during medieval times.

Romans sits south of Hauterives en Drôme and the Massif Vercors (the same mountain that rises next to Grenoble). It sits 18km north and east above Valence, where the Isère enters the Rhône River Valley. It was at Romans that the first bridge across the Isère was built (le « Pont Vieux » (1049)) to Bourg-de-Péage. In 1349 along with much of the rest of the area (Dauphiné), the city lost its independence, falling under the rule of the Dauphine (Traité de Romans), and accordingly the area was a hot bed during the revolution of anti-monarchy feelings. Romans was liberated by the Allies in August 1944; before that time it was a seat of resistance to the Vichy and German governments. Le Pont Vieux fut dynamité en 1940 et l’explosion souffla les vitraux de la collégiale.égiale_Saint-Barnard -- Pictures here. L'église Notre-Dame de Lourdes de Romans-sur-Isère (Drôme) est l'œuvre de l'architecte François Béranger; construite en 1937 et inaugurée le 15 août 1938. Elle est de style gothique moderne.

August 16, 1698: The Gold Coast changes owners on this date (even though it still remained vacant). About, twelve years before Beaufort was founded, John BAYLEY, (or Baley) of Ireland, was given most of Hilton Head Island as an Irish-style Barony. About twelve years after the founding of Beaufort, Bayley's son appointed Alexander Trench as his agent in charge of selling the land. For a short time, Hilton Head was called Trench's Island on some 18th century maps. Most of the Barony lands were unsold and remained vacant until the end of the Revolutionary War. see generally;;;

The two markers from HHI point out some of the history, which tourists miss in all the traffic. The death of a Patriot Militiaman recounted at the right has its counterpoise on Dafuskie Isle, where a Tory family apparently lived. It was brother against brother, neighbor against neighbor in the closing War years on the coast in South Carolina as well as Georgia.

August 16, 1898: Gold was discovered at what would be named Bonanza Creek in the Alaskan Territory, more specifically, the Klondike region of this US possession. North to Alaska, the rush was on to strike it rich, a dream realized by just a few. A few years later John Wayne would help portray the life and times of the men who went way up north, in a fairly light-hearted way. Featured in the film was a song by Johnny Horton, of the same name as the movie, which was his last single before death (peaked at #4 on the Pop Chart and #1 on the Country Billboard list).

Horton perished in a car wreck in November 1960, shortly after the release. Columbia Record Company distributed his greatest hits post-mortem in 1961. This compilation presented 13 of his more folk-oriented songs, rather than his country western contributions, including the now famous North to Alaska. For those of you new to his body of work, Johnny Horton Live at the Louisiana Hayride - (released 2006) is a recent compendium (of original performances that includes many of his country-style tunes. Big Sam left Seattle in the year of ninety-two, with George Pratt, his partner, and brother Billy too. They crossed the Yukon River and found the bonanza gold, below that old white mountain, just a little southeast of Nome. The song was performed over the movie credits. Interestingly on this date in 2006, Google provides free wireless access to the World Wide Web for everyone living in its hometown, Mountain View -- a little nugget of California gold. Read about some other Gold Rushes in the USA -- HERE.

August 17, 1969: Today is the death day of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (Ludwig Mies) in Chicago (born in Aachen, Germany). Van der Rohe was one of the leading architects of the early 20th century. He enrolled at age 15 as an apprentice to an architect in his home town. He is noted for his two desiderata, architectural integrity and structural honesty. Ludwig Mies pioneered the use of steel and glass in skyscrapers. In 1930 he was appointed director of the Bauhaus School in Dessau. It was he who closed the Bauhaus in 1933 before the Nazis could shut it down. In 1937 he immigrated to the United States. Mies settled in Chicago at the Illinois Institute of Technology (then called the Armour Institute). Some of his noted buildings are: the Lake Shore Drive Apartments in Chicago IL and the Seagram Building in New York City (1956-58). Later he designed the Bacardi Building in Mexico City (1961), the Federal Center in Chicago (1964), the Public Library in Washington DC (1967) and the Neu National Gallery in Berlin, Germany (1968).

August 17, 2013: "Ten Years After" plays at the Casino Rama in Ontario, Canada today on the anniversary of its debut in 1969 at a little music festival in Upstate New York. The late Alvin Lee (March 2013: led the group, whose performance the film "Woodstock" memorializes. Forty-four years later, the group appears with "Canned Heat" and several other groups this night.

August 18, 1587 (some say 17th): On Roanoke Island at the English colony, Ellinor and Ananias Dare became parents of a baby girl whom they name Virginia Dare, the first English child born on what is now Roanoke Island, N.C., then considered Walter Raleigh’s second settlement in Roanoke, Virginia. Virginia Dare, born to the daughter of John White, became the first child of English parents to be born on American soil. She and the other colonists would vanish without a trace. Much more can be found at:

August 18th: Today is the feast day of Saint Helena, the mother of Constantine the Great. In 327-328 Helena made a pilgrimage to the Middle-East to walk in the footsteps of Christ. She initiated the building of several Christian churches on sites she determined to be sacred according to trusted traditions of the area. During her journey she is credited by many for the discovery of the True Cross. This relic was venerated in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem by the end of the 340's. Helena died shortly after her journey. She was later made a saint in both the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches because of her awesome discoveries, her piety and her widespread charity.

August 19, 1812: Returning from a cruise off Canada, the USS Constitution, commanded by Captain Isaac Hull of the fledgling U.S. Navy, encountered HMS Guerriere led by British Captain Richard Dacre, about 750 miles from Boston Harbor. After an hour engagement, a battle that left 101 dead, the Guerriere was helpless in the water, smashed beyond salvage. Cap't. Dacre struck his colors, surrendered to Hull. In contrast, the USS Constitution had very little damage and only 14 casualties. The enemy's shells had seemed to bounce off its sides as if they were made of iron. The fight's outcome shocked the British Admiralty, while it gave comfort to Americans through the darker days of the War of 1812. And so, Old Ironsides was named because of the nearly impenetrable strength of the Live Oak timber from Gascoigne Bluff in Georgia. The USS Constitution won more than 30 battles against the Barbary pirates off Africa’s coast.

Overlooking the Frederica River, Gascoigne Bluff was a favorite Native American campground. In the 16th century a Franciscan monastery, San Buenaventura, was built near this site. During the American colonial era, the landing at the bluff became Georgia's first naval base and bears the name of the man, Gascoigne, who first surveyed the local coast for England. When the Spanish fleet sailed up from St. Augustine to attack Oglethorpe's settlement at Fort Frederica, they landed first at Gascoigne.

During the Plantation Era, sea island (long staple) cotton was shipped to ports around the world from the Hamilton Plantation dock at Gascoigne. Exports stopped during the War between the States, when the bluff became United States Navy Headquarters. In the years following that war, life at Gascoigne took on renewed vigor as a sawmill industry flourished on the riverbanks.

August 20, 573: Gregory of Tours was selected as the Bishop of that ancient town. Gregory's history of the Church in France (more specifically about Clovis and his successors, the Merovingian Franks) is considered one of the most well known primary sources of the time. -- a no-holds-barred compendium of the personalities and miracles of the time.

The name of Cæsarodonum (the hill of Cæsar) is first mentioned in the first century AD. This new settlement became the chief town of the Romanized Gauls called the Turones. In the fourth century, Saint Martin of Tours established the city as a center of learning that produced France's first historian, Gregory of Tours, only one hundred years later. Under the influence of Charlemagne during the eighth and ninth centuries, Tours remained one of the great intellectual cities of Europe. In the Middle Ages, Tours was recognized as an important center for the teaching of medicine (its school of surgery was founded by a guild of barbers in 1408). Puis capitale du royaume de France, Tours bénéficie d'une situation exceptionnelle au centre de la célèbre Vallée de la Loire, au cœur du Jardin de la France.

Tuesday, August 20, 1991: This is the day officially recognized as that on which the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics collapsed, when more than 100,000 people rallied outside the Soviet Union's parliament building protesting the coup that deposed President Mikhail Gorbachev. Estonia reclaimed its independence and left the Soviet collective on this day, too. The Soviets had occupied Estonia occupied for more than 50 years. Interestingly (sadly), the heroes (martyrs) of this day and what they fought for, are all but forgotten 20 years later.

For those of you who enjoy irony, this is the same day that Milton's Paradise Lost was published in 1667, Leon Trotsky, an exiled Soviet revolutionary, was attacked on Stalin's orders (fatally wounded in Mexico City by an assassin's alpine ice-ax --it will take a day to die) and Czechoslovakia was invaded by Soviet led Warsaw Pact forces in 1968. The 200,000 Warsaw Pact troops, featuring about 5,000 tanks, invaded Czechoslovakia in order to end the political liberalization popularly known as the Prague Spring. Strangely enough, on Sunday August 20, 1882, Piotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture debuted in Moscow. On this day Arab forces led by Khalid bin Walid seize control of Syria and Palestine (Battle of Yarmuk 636AD) from the Roman forces in the East (Byzantine Empire), marking the first great wave of Muslim conquests that constituted a rapid advance of Islam outside the Arabian peninsula. Here is one for you to look up; on this day in history, a Canadian discovers buffalo from Manitoba.

August 21, 1741: Georg Friedrich Händel would go into seclusion at his home to begin writing an oratorio. He finished the composition 23 days later. He later conceded, to paraphrase an apostle: Whether I was in the body or out of the body when I wrote it, I know not.

The first audience to hear the oratorio Messiah lived in Dublin in 1742. The Irish gave what is reported to be the greatest ovation in the city's history. Some weeks later, London heard the work for the first time, and again it was a grand triumph.

Behold, I tell you a mystery;
We shall not all sleep; but we shall all be changed in a moment,
in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.

The trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible,
and we {all} shall be changed.
For this corruptible must put on incorruption,
and this mortal must put on immortality.

On March 23, 1743, the Messiah had its London premiere. King George II attended. In the middle of the Hallelujah Chorus (the last piece), the sovereign rose to his feet in appreciation ! The entire audience followed the example out of respect for the King. From the beginning came the custom of standing during the finale, Hallelujah. Now that's change in which we all can believe.

As an interesting aside, on April 6, 1759, Händel accompanied a performance of the Messiah on the organ for the final concert of the Easter season. He passed away just eight days later, on the Saturday between Good Friday and Easter Sunday. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

August 21, 1959: Statehood bills for Hawai'i were introduced into the U.S. Congress as early as 1919 by the non-voting delegates Hawai'i sent to the U.S. Congress. Additional bills were introduced in 1935, 1947 and 1950. In 1959, the U.S. Congress approved the statehood bill. This was followed by a referendum in which Hawai'i residents voted overwhelmingly in support of statehood (the ballot question was: Shall Hawaii immediately be admitted into the Union as a state ?), and on August 21, 1959 (the third Friday in August), President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a proclamation making Hawai'i the 50th state. Good thing, too -- first last solar eclipse visible from the United States was in 1991 (and then only just from a portion of Hawai'i)

The solar eclipse that takes place on Monday, August 21, 2017, will be the next visible total eclipse of the Sun from a narrow corridor through the United States. The longest duration of totality will be 2 minutes 40 seconds in Christian County, Kentucky just northwest of Hopkinsville, Kentucky. A partial solar eclipse will be seen from the much broader path of the Moon's penumbra, including all of North America, northern South America, western Europe, and Africa. This eclipse will be part of the Saros cycle 145 that also produced an eclipse August 11, 1999.

August 22, 565: Celtic (Irish) missionary and abbot of Iona, Columba reportedly confronts the Loch Ness Monster. He becomes the first recorded historical observer of the creature. At the voice of the saint, the monster was terrified, wrote his biographer, and fled more quickly than if it had been pulled back with ropes.

In 1997 Great Britain issued special stamps for Saints Augustine of Canterbury and Columba of Iona. Royal Mail's Special Stamps Manager, Rosena Robson, said: The stamps celebrate two great saints who had a tremendous influence on shaping the Christian faith in Britain. This year will see a major pilgrimage following those early Christian missions, and it is appropriate that Royal Mail should be joining those celebrations with this Special Stamp issue. Information about the stamps is HERE.
August 22, 1787: A Silversmith, John Fitch, demonstrated his great device, the first successful one of its kind in the New Country. Never heard of him, you say. Have patience, we reply. He invented the steamboat. On this date he sailed the Perseverance, on the Delaware River to the delight of delegates of the Continental Congress. Twenty years later, Robert Fulton, of steamship folly fame, sailed into history on the Hudson River (August 17, 1807). I guess he had the New York City press behind him. Read about Georgia's first steam engine patent HERE

August 22, 1922 -- ¡ SÍ, se puede !: A thirty-one year old Irishman was murdered in ambush this day by former political allies, en route to his home in County Cork. On December 6, 1922, the Irish Constitution went into effect and the Irish Free State was officially proclaimed. One can argue that it was Michael Collins who achieved the goal of separation from England after hundreds of years, but he did not live to see his dream realised. President of the Irish Provisional Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Provisional Army, Collins knew well that he was a marked man by his support of a political first step away from Britain, when others wanted full and immediate independence.

Collins, arrested and sent to internment camps like many of the 1916 Easter Rising's participants, became a leading figure in the post-Rising Sinn Féin, a small nationalist party which the British government and the Irish media incorrectly blamed for the 1916 events. Negotiations with Great Britain resulted in an Anglo-Irish Treaty, which approved a new Irish dominion, named the "Irish Free State" (a literal translation from the Irish term Saorstát Éireann). A revolution broke out over the terms of the agreement. One of Collins' last public appearances involved the funeral for friend and fellow cabinet colleague, President Griffith. Within one week, Collins joined Griffith in Glasnevin Cemetery in Dublin. from

Why is this important today, you may well ask? Collins remains in the public memory as the young man, barely aged thirty, who delivered a republic, then a lasting treaty, who inspired a generation and who tragically died before his time, just as his country stood on the threshold of independent self-government. Had he remained alive, perhaps many of the troubles that would come to plague Ireland during the next 80 years might have been lessened or avoided altogether. Collins' model for fighting a big power has remained, however, as a legacy that affects us today, either explicitly as with Israel's revolution against British rule, or implicitly in the tactics once used in Vietnam or even in Iraq to fight the allied forces.
August 23, 1784: At Jonesborough, upper East Tennessee settlers (in the first of two conventions that year) would declare their area (Washington, Greene and Sullivan Counties, today) independent of any other state (i.e. NC), naming the new area Franklin. The Continental Congress would reject the claim for statehood a year later, but the die was cast. Tennessee would become a territory in 1790 and the 16th state on June 1, 1796. A good history beginning with its roots as an area known as Watauga (Virginia) is found HERE. see also As an interesting aside, it appears that some of Ulrich Zwingli's family first settled in Pennsylvania and Maryland (mid-18th Century), and later could be found in upper East Tennessee by the 1790's.

August 23, 1821: After 11 years of civil war, the Spanish Empire granted Mexico independence as a constitutional monarchy. Spanish Viceroy (and Lieutenant-General of the Armies of Spain), Don Juan de Ó'Donojú (O'Donoghue), signed the Treaty of Cordoba, which approved the plan. Don Agustín de Iturbide, First Chief of the Imperial Mexican Army (his family from the Basque region of Spain), represented Mexico. He would become the first monarch, Emperor Agustín I, on July 22, 1822. His reign was short-lived because political and financial instability continued to plague the newly independent Mexico.

August 23, 1859: The first air mail in the U.S. is carried in a balloon. John Wise and his balloon "the Jupitir" travelled from Lafayette, Indiana, to Crawfordsville, Indiana, carrying 123 letters (and 23 circulars). The intended destination, however was New York City. Unfortunately, the winds were not favorable. The air was still, and the craft had to ascend to 14,000 feet before air currents could propel the balloon. After five hours, Wise had only traveled 30 miles south, not east, and had to touch down in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Nevertheless, the bag of mail eventually made it to New York by train. Never-the-less, in 1959 the United States Postal Service issued a 7 cent stamp commemorating Wise's flight. "Toto, I don't think we're in Kansas anymore."

August 23, 1913: Léon Letort carried out the first non-stop flight between Paris and Berlin (Johannisthal). Letort flew his monoplane, a Morane-Saulnier (Robert et Léon Morane, and Raymond Saulnier designers -- Morane-Saulnier est une société constructrice d'avions française. Société créée sous le nom de « Sociètè Anonyme des Aèroplanes Morane-Saulnier» le 10 octobre à 1911 Puteaux (Paris region)) fitted with an 80-hp Le Rhône rotary engine. The journey lasted 8 hours to go the 560 miles between the two capitals. He returned with a friend who he had taught to fly, Millie Moore, one-time movie star. She learned to fly at Gashinka (St. Petersburg), earning Russian license # 56 on 19 November 1911. In August 1917, the Sopwith Pup, fitted with an 80-hp Le Rhône engine, was the first aircraft to land aboard a moving ship, the Royal Navy's HMS Furious.

August 23, 1939: After cocktails, German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop and Soviet Commissar for Foreign Affairs, Vyacheslav M. Molotov, signed a Treaty of Non-Aggression. The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact freed Hitler to invade Poland and let Stalin invade Finland, as well as eastern Poland, in order to protect them from the German aggressors. Secret protocols, made public many years later, assigned Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Bessarabia to be within the Soviet sphere of influence. Poland was to be partitioned along the rivers Narev, Vistula and San. Germany retained Lithuania enlarged by the inclusion of Vilnius. Just days after the signing, Germany attacked Poland, and by the end of September, both powers had stolen portions of Poland. The Nazi invasion started World War II, when Britain and France (by treaty) came to Poland's aid.

It is reported that Stalin cared not if Germany won or lost to the Western Allies. If Germany prevailed it would be too weak to attack Russia. If the West won, it would come at a high price, which would result in a socialist Europe. One may speculate on the reasons why he ignored the signs of a German buildup in Poland that presaged its invasion of Russia. Ironically, Britain would abandon Poland to Soviet domination at the end of the conflict, and send Polish soldiers who had fought with the British back to Poland where many were sent of to labour camps.

On August 23, 1990, East and West Germany announced that they would unite on October 3rd. Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania achieved their freedom in late-August 1991, after the so-called hard-line communist coup failed in Moscow. By Early September most nations, including Russia had recognized these three countries that had been swallowed-up in 1939."

August 24, 79AD: A volcano near today's Italian city of Naples, Mount Vesuvius, erupts and in the process wipes out much of the population of the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. The destruction did not occur in one hour or one day. The location of the cities are forgotten until the 19th Century. Today, excavation has revealed the life and times of all stratæ of Roman Society from the first century AD.
Is there a lesson here ?? Should we worry about problems only when they occur; after all, how serious could they be ??? Pompei: Città campana alle falde sudorientali del Vesuvio -- Infatti la città di origine osca, posta alla foce del fiume Sarno, poi porto greco, poi romana, fu completamente seppellita sotto uno strato di lapilli e di cenere durante l'eruzione del Vesuvio del 79 d.C. (Il giorno del 24 agosto) insieme ad Ercolano e Stabia. -- dies iræ dies illa dies tribulationis et angustiæ dies calamitatis et miseriæ dies tenebrarum et caliginis dies nebulæ et turbinis (

August 24, 1572: The slaughter of French Protestants at the hands of the Catholic forces began in Paris, as Charles IX of France attempted to rid the country of Huguenots. So started France’s fourth in a series of wars of religion, a day called the Massacre of St. Bartholomew’s Day, in which 50,000 Huguenots died in and around Paris.

The Église St. Germain-l'Auxerrois lies at the end of Pont du Neuf on the Right Bank at 2, Place du Louvre The oldest part of the current church building is the 12th century belfry, which rang out August 24, 1572, when some 3,000 Huguenots were massacred in this neighborhood. The tower bells signaled the supporters of Catherine de Médicis, Marguerite de Guise, Charles IX, and the future Henri III to launch a slaughter of these innocents (including Admiral Gaspard de Chastillon, Count de Coligny), who had been invited to celebrate the marriage of Henri de Navarre to Marguerite de Valois. Some believe that Charles' mother Catherine was told that the Huguenot Protestants were plotting a revolution and agreed to the pre-emptive plan. Some say she remains fully complicit in murder.

August 24, 1814: British troops under the command of General Robert Ross won an important victory (defeating an American force at Bladensburg, Maryland). This action would permit them to march into the City of Washington, in the Distict of Columbia, without opposition. In retaliation for the Yankee burning of the parliament building in York (Toronto), the capitol of Britain's Upper Canada, Washington's federal structures were cheerfully barbecued. Meeting no resistance from the disorganized American forces, the British roasted the White House, the US Capitol and British forces destroyed the Library of Congress, containing some 3,000 books, before a downpour extinguished the fires. Well, downpour is a mild word for what happened, it was more like a hurricane with a tornado thrown in for good measure, something of Biblical proportions. The British retreated as if smitten by divine wrath.

The British would fail to capture Baltimore, the next step in the pursuit of ultimate satisfaction. After 24 hours of bombardment, the British attack against Fort McHenry was repulsed (September 14, 1814). The representatives of the Empire returned home. A Washington lawyer who had come to Baltimore to negotiate the release of a civilian prisoner of war, witnessed the bombardment from a nearby truce ship. He wrote a poem to celebrate the American victory. The prose was later set to music. Oh say! Can you see . . . .

The remainder of August is HERE
Stand by the roads, look and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; walk in that way and find rest for your souls
A Paris area Page -- And Another -- Paris Environs -- Mérovingiens and Metz -- Late-winter in Paris 2007 (an impression of what is out in the plain air)

Art in Bercy -- Mont Saint-Michel -- Other Churches and structures -- Art -- Maclet -- Clymer --- Georgia's Golden Isles

Who Were The Pharisees, Sadducees and Scribes? . . . the Essenes? -- Images of Pittsburgh -- Texas
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We have obtained ideas from a lot of places, but in particular from: -- -- -- -- -- -- --

An historical recounting for the entire months of:  January -- February -- March -- April -- May -- June -- July -- August -- September -- October -- November -- December

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The scrolling digital display shows Universal Time (UTC), which is 5 hours in winter and 4 hours in summer ahead of Eastern and EDT, respectively. So, the summer solstice took place on Friday, June 21, 2013 at 0504 Universal time, which was 1:04 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time and 11:04 P.M. on the 20th, if you were in Casper Wyoming (Mountain Time) at the time.