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Members of Troop 477 salute a Veteran of the Revolution, Howard Cash Sr. standing before a DAR memorial at his gravesite near Baldwin, Georgia (during a hike to the Russell Wildlife Management Area on April 16, 2005). This soldier received a land-grant in Georgia in compensation for his War service. Howard the Revolutionary War soldier, was born in Amherst County, Virginia in 1754. He passed away at age 89 on July 16, 1843, and was buried on the old family homestead. Howard's brother, John, who also received a land grant (in Pike County Ga) is the forbearer of Johnny Cash. (JOHN CASH, b.April 05,1757, Albemarle County Va; d.8-13-1836, Henry County, Georgia, leaving Will Book A:38 -- m. Lucy Campbell b. 3 MAR 1760 d. 23 JAN 1848 Pike County, Georgia is the Grandfather of Singer Johnny Cash). Cash historically is based in Fifeshire. Some Cashes went to Ireland before immigrating elsewhere, but records show that a WILLIAM CASH was born about 1653 in Scotland, probably Strathmilgo, Fife. William Cash was in North America first. He died in about 1708 in Westmoreland County Virginia. It is four generations from here to the NE hills of Georgia and a Revolutionary soldier, named Howard (named after his grandfather, who was a son of William).

Howard the Revolutionary War soldier, was the son of Stephen Cash (Head oF Families - AMHERST County, VA (1783)), who served as a Virginia combatant in the French-Indian War. Howard was the grandson of Robert Howard Cash, great-grandson of William, the immigrant. In turn, Howard's grandson Bartley Jackson Cash {son of Nelson Cash} enlisted in the Confederate forces from the State of Georgia (originally equipped with a Georgia Pike {Gov. Joe Brown's answer to the lack of weapons}). Bartley Jackson's granddaughter, Louisa {loo-eye-sah} (this Webmaster's grandmother) was named after a child of Bartley's friend, which child died of disease during the War Between the States. Bartley walked home from Appomattox Courthouse, which is located in a county that touches Amherst (to the south and east).

Nelson Cash (namesake of several Cash family members) of Martinez, GA (and Louisa's younger brother) at age 92, entered into rest on Wednesday, September 21, 2005. He was preceded in death by his wife, the late Ila Mae Marshall Cash as well as his parents, the late Freeman Melvin Cash and Theodosia Lulola [Perkins] Cash. Born February 11, 1913 in Cornelia, GA, he moved to Columbia County in 1931. He retired from SCE&G from the Stevens Creek Plant. He was a member of West Acres Baptist Church. He was a member of the Farm Bureau and various senior groups. -- from the Augusta Chronicle (September 22, 2005)

Theodosia was the daughter of Tilman Perkins, who at War's start was a private and became a second lieutenant in 1863. He was wounded in the Battle of Atlanta and later captured at Jonesboro. After an exchange he rejoined the fight. He surrendered at the end of the War at Augusta, Georgia. Tilman's family hailed from North Carolina, moving to Habersham County, Georgia in the mid-1830's. Tilman's wife (Emily Frances Stephens)'s father, Littleton Stephens, died the day after Christmas, 1863, from wounds received at the Battle of Dalton Georgia, where he is buried under the name "Middleton." The Perkins family seems to be of English or possibly Scots-Irish descent, immigrants to Virginia and the Carolinas, although my grandmother thought some part of the family might have some Dutch blood (see below).

It is clear that Francis (Fanny) Carpenter married Logan Perkins (Tilman's father) in Lincoln County, North Carolina on February 6, 1829, and that they soon moved to Habersham County Georgia (today the town of Homer in Banks County). She was the forth child of Catherine Mosteller and John Carpenter. Catherine can be traced back another 8 generations of Mostellers. Her grandfather, Johannes Peter Marställer, immigrated (circa late-1730's) to Pennsylvania from Germany -- So, the Mosteller / Marställer families were Pennsylvania Deutsch, or Dutch as most people called them then (and still do today). Many Pennsylvania Deutsch, including the Marställers, were Protestant refugees from the Palatinate region (as were some of my wife's people -- the Broyles, overrun by the French under the leadership of the Sun King in his quest to restore the true faith and get back the French population that had fled his religious persecutions.

Update: August 31, 2010: I finally was able to see the gravesite today, thanks to the courtesy of J. Larry Whitfield who has served his community for about 40 years (1971) as a family-owned business, Whitfield Funeral Home. He is also a Cash relation to me, as Nelson is the common ancestor we share. It's a little more overgrown (above) in late summer than the picture taken in the spring would suggest. The family homestead location has been located, but remains hidden in the woods. The entire site overlooks the rich bottom land fields of the Broad River Basin in Banks County GA. What a treat to visit the place with a whole slew of family members, thanks to the private land owner who permitted our visit. My Facebook Page contains a few pictures, thanks to an iPhone and a good connection in the middle of NE GA. The occasion for the get-together was the funeral for Emily Cash Tidwell, who passed away on August 27th at 94 years of age. She was the last of her generation and my grandmother's youngest sister.

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

In Memorium: Terri Shiavo 
3/31/05 @ 9:05am EST
We get ideas from: -- -- -- -- -- -- --

History for the entire year: January -- February -- March -- May -- June -- July -- August -- September -- October -- November -- December -- Current Newsletter

We have removed our reflections, written in way back in 2005, about the election of then a new Pope and the passing of John Paul II: Go HERE to see that effort.

April First: Mea Culpa -- Yes, termites were the first chinese computer bugs.

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 !

If ye should find yourself drawn towards the sea,
Take the moral compass of poetry.
More sea tales here

April 1, 1566: Pedro Menéndez de Avilés y Alonso de la Campa, then governor of Florida, travels north to confer with Chief Guale on Sainte Catherine Island. This native chief controlled the lower half of what would 200 years later be called the Georgia coast. Menéndez built two forts, one on Cumberland Island and one on St. Catherine. In September of 1565, Menéndez had attacked the nearby French Huguenot colony called Fort Caroline, murdering everyone (men, women and children), except the few who escaped in ships. He had hung some of the butchered bodies from trees, in proper style for the times, one supposes as a warning for others who would trespass.

The Menéndez governing style would prove generally unsuccessful for the Spanish cause. By the end of his stay in the New World, only the settlement at Saint Augustine remained a viable mission. He returned to Spain in 1567. Named Captain General of the Great Armada (1573), Menéndez received his just rewards at the hands of the British in a naval battle at Santander, Spain (1574). Felip II estat Cantàbria (1570) a la base naval de Santander. As an aside, the Romans put their Port at Santander in 19BC. It became an important centre for the export of Iberian minerals to the Empire, minerals dug no doubt by native slaves. There is no report of the Romans hanging bodies on trees there; but, one supposes they would have done so, if it advanced the cause of commerce. Thus we ask, which is worse, butchery for profit, politics or profound belief.

April 1, 1925: Sculptor Augustus Lukeman took over the Stone Mountain (Georgia) project. He suggests that three men -- Stonewall Jackson, Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis -- be enshrined forever on the face of the mountain. Upset about the lack of progress on completion of the Confederate memorial carving, the Stone Mountain Memorial Association had fired the original designer John Gutzon de la Mothe Borglum in February. Although the contract with Borglum had said that his working models belonged to the Association, the sculptor had reacted to his dismissal by destroying the models. After being indicted by a grand jury, Borglum fled the state. Subsequently, he was replaced by Lukeman, who blasted off the face of the mountain the heads of Lee and Jackson, the Borglum work already set in stone to last eternity.

April 2, 742: Charlemagne (Karl der Große -- d.814), Charles I the Great, King of the Franks, was born. His vast progeny include many of the great and not so great royal houses of Europe. They include a large majority of US Presidents, including the current office-holder (2013). Charlemagne was most likely born in Herstal, Wallonia, where his father was born, a town close to Liège in modern day Belgium. Note that there are no more descendants in direct male line. In the 5th generation after Charlemagne, only 3 direct male branches survived: the Count of Vermandois, the King of Lorraine and the King of France (Louis IV 'd'Outremer'). The Counts of Vermandois became the longest, lasting until Herbert IV (1028-1080AD). The line of Louis IV d'Outremer continued through his son, Charles, Duke of Lower Lorraine, whose daughters married into the houses of Louvain (also descended from Charlemagne via the Counts of Hainault), and Namur (via the Counts of Luxembourg). The longest direct male lines thus remained in Southern Netherlands, the homeland of other Merovingian and Carolingian sovereigns.

His capital was at Aachen (Acquisgrana in Latin), which today is in Germany, close by the Dutch Border. The Carolingian rule under Charlemagne, annexed all of southern Germany and the lands in the north and northeast, held by the Saxons. Charlemagne, crowned emperor of the Roman Empire in 800AD by Pope Leo III, patterned his court after the style of the late Roman Empire. The official work of his court was done in Latin; however, the day - to - day language (in the eastern empire) congealed into what has evolved into Hoch Deutsch today. Why not French? Because, upon his death the empire split into three kingdoms. The western area eventually became France and its romantic (ne c'est pas) language based in Latin prevailed. Indeed, even by 800AD the language between the western and the eastern parts of the empire had shown marked differences. Go HERE for more information.

Charles the King, our Lord and Sovereign,
Full seven years hath sojourned in Spain,
Conquered the land, and won the western main,
Now no fortress against him doth remain,
No city walls are left for him to gain,
Save Sarraguce, that sits on high mountain.
Marsile its King, who feareth not God's name,
Mahumet's man, he invokes Apollin's aid,
Nor wards off ills that shall to him attain.

Charlemagne required his nobles to be literate and provided for their education by the great luminaries of the time. But as the unknown poet remarks, he who held all of France in fee, could not free himself of treachery. I leave it to you to press that issue further on your own. The Cathedral at Aachen today rests in the area of Charlemagne's palace and original cathedral church from about 800AD (Katschhof Plaza). see

April 2, 1513: A Spanish explorer, Juan Ponce de Léon, landed in Florida. Having discovered Florida at dawn, he later introduced citrus (orange and lemon) trees into the area in order to furnish drinks for breakfast. He is best remembered, perhaps, for his failures. He found no treasure in gold nor the fountain of youth. However, on April 2, 1792, the U.S. Congress passed the Coinage Act, which authorized establishment of the Federal Mint in Philadelphia. It established the dollar, defined in fixed weights of gold and silver. Congress authorized the $10 Eagle, $5 half-Eagle and $2.50 quarter-Eagle gold coins, as well as $ilver dollar, half-dollar, quarter, disme & half-disme coins. Small amounts of these issues of coins premiered in 1793. Copper coins, the cent (1793) and half-cent (1794) also appeared in due course.

Due to a lack of Federal coinage, Spanish coins continued to circulate widely in the new Nation for many years. The 8-Real coin had the same amount of silver as the American dollar. Often this Spanish denomination was cut up, if smaller 4-Real or 2-Real coins were unavailable -- 2 bits of an 8-Real coin were a quarter. The mint in San Francisco (a town also established by Spanish explorers looking for gold) opened one day and a few years later in history on April 3, 1854.

April 2, 1792 Speaking of cash, when copper was available and the government had money, it coined pennies and half-pennies. Metal composition varied, sometimes older coins and tokens were restruck. Each denomination (at least in the early years) had several different engraving varieties each year. The mint for the first half cent was authorized on this date (1792 -- mint and gold and silver coins authorized), however the actual approval for copper coins came on May 8, 1792. Moreover, the first "business strike" for the half cent (a coin that was released for circulation) occurred in July 1793. During its 64-year timespan of minting (and not every year had a coin release as a circulating denomination), five different basic design types were struck. The coins came from the Philadelphia Mint. You may think that a half cent would not buy much, but at a time when non-farm wages averaged a dime an hour and bread a penny a loaf ....

The half cent's designers and engravers are among the best known names in U.S. Mint design/engraving history: Adam Eckfeldt or Joseph Wright (on the first design), Robert Scot, John Gardner, Gilbert Stuart, John Reich and Christian Gobrecht. Designs that appeared on the half cent were also used on other denominations throughout the years. The edge of each half cent piece was lettered "TWO HUNDRED FOR A DOLLAR" for the first issue and some of the years that followed.The obverse depicts a bust of Liberty with flowing hair, facing left. A Liberty Cap on a pole rests on her right shoulder giving the design its name, the Liberty Cap. The design for the Liberty Cap half cent was based on Agustin Dupre's Libertas Americana medal. Another liberty cap design appeared for 1794 and later years. The technical name for the cap is the pileus or freed man's cap. The reverse has the denomination "HALF CENT" spelled in large letters. If one could not read, the size (.93 inch) told you the denomination.

Le 2 avril 1810: L'empereur Napoléon 1er (40 ans) épouse l'archiduchesse d'Autriche Marie-Louise (18 ans). Marie-Louise descend de l'impératrice Marie-Thérèse. Elle est la nièce de la reine Marie-Antoinette. Marie-Louise was an Austrian Archduchess, daughter of Emperor Francis I of Austria, a country recently at war with France.

The Sénat had pronounced effective his divorce from Josephine, his first love, on December 15, 1809. In the meantime, on June 10, 1809, Pope Pius VII had excommunicated Napoléon. Retaliating, Napoléon had the Pope put in custody on July 6th. Then on February 17, 1810, France annexed the Papal States. This action forced the Pope to sign an additional concordat and to annul Napoléon’s marriage to Josephine. Napoléon divorced Josephine, his wife, who was 46 years old in 1809, because she still had not produced an heir. The new bride, in due course, had a son, Napoléon François-Joseph Charles. As heir to the French Empire, Napoléon gave him the title, King of Rome. After Napoléon's defeat, the young King of Rome might have become his successor, under the regency of his mother, Empress Maria Louisa, but Talleyrand objected and arranged for the restoration of the Bourbon dynasty. Maria Louisa was given the life-title of Duchess of Parma, while Napoleon's son was named the Duke of Reichstadt. He apparently had TB, dying in 1832 at the age of 21.

April 2, 1814: Henry Lewis Benning was born in Columbia County, Georgia. After graduation from the University of Georgia in 1834, Benning read law in the city of Talbotton before being admitted to the bar in Columbus (1835). Through the law, he had success and wealth -- owning over 3,000 acres of land. After unsuccessful races for the General Assembly and Congress, the legislature placed Benning into the Georgia Supreme Court (1853-59). Benning urged Georgia's secession after the election of Lincoln. Upon War's outbreak, he raised the 17th Georgia Infantry, for which he was elected its colonel in August of 1861.

His company participated in, inter alia, battles of the Seven Days and Second Manassas. Later Benning took command of Toombs' Brigade at Sharpsburg and Fredericksburg. In January 1863, he became a brigadier general, in Hood's Division. His brigade fought at Gettysburg (Devil's Den), Chickamauga (Battle of Chattanooga) and Knoxville. In General Field's Division, his brigade fought in the battles of Wilderness, Petersburg and Appomattox Courthouse. When the conflict ended, Benning resumed the private practice of law in Columbus GA, passing away on July 8, 1875.

Talbotton, incorporated on December 20, 1828, is the county seat of Talbot County. The city and county were named for Governor Mathew Talbot, who was serving as President of the Georgia Senate when Governor Rabun died. The city is famous for the first session of the Georgia Supreme Court, held on January 26, 1846, at ye olde Claiborne Hotel. At the hotel, the State's first 15 attorneys took the oath to practice law before that appellate body.

The first successful and systematic training of the U.S. Infantry can be tracked back to Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, in 1778. It was on this frozen ground that Lt. General Baron Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben, first Inspector General of the United States Army, introduced a set of standard drill regulations, teaching them to Washington's ragtag army. In 1867, Emory Upton's A New System of Infantry Tactics was adopted by the U.S. Army, hailed as the greatest single advance in Infantry training procedures since the regulation of von Steuben. Upton was present (but on the opposite side of the field) at many of the battles in which Benning fought.

Due to his concern over the decline of good marksmanship in the Army, Lt. Gen. Arthur MacArthur persuaded the Army to establish the School of Musketry at the Presidio of Monterey, California, on February 21, 1907. This may be called the beginning of the present Infantry School concept, leading to the eventual creation of Fort Benning. After the outbreak of World War I, the U.S. Army created a new training post in Columbus, named Camp Benning in honor of General Benning. In 1922, the camp was redesignated as Fort Benning, now known as the Home of the Infantry.

April 2, 1917: In direct response to the sinking of the Lusitania by Germany on April 2nd, President Woodrow Wilson would ask for a declaration of war from Congress, in accordance with the provisions of the U.S. Constitution. At 8:30 p.m. President Woodrow Wilson, delivered a message before a joint session of Congress. Realizing that a great and costly war lay ahead, Wilson would argue, the day has come when America is privileged to spend her blood and her might for the principles that gave her birth and happiness and the peace which she has treasured … The world must be made safe for democracy. On April 2, 1917, Jeannette Rankin, from Montana, became the first woman to take a seat in the US Congress. Four days later, she voted against the declaration that was granted that same day (April 6, 1917). On April 2, 1917, the Red Baron shot down Snoopy, an American Volunteer, given permission to fight for France before the USA joined the confligration. Kill #34 was a Sopwith Camel over Givenchy, France. This is the extent of many a person's knowledge of the Great War (to end all wars). Did you know that in two weeks later 100,000 men would be casualties from just one battle ??

April 2, 1982 -- South Georgia (in the Scotia Sea): A London-born merchant Antoine de la Roche was possibly the first person to lay claim to South Georgia Island. In April 1675, as he was sailing for the British from Lima, Peru (on the Pacific Ocean) to England, his ship was forced off-course, blown south upon rounding Cape Horn and in the Atlantic (or Antarctic waters as the case might be), de la Roche spied ice-covered mountains. He and his crew may have been the first Europeans to see any of the sub-Antarctic islands, thus establishing the British rights that still would be in dispute over 300 years later.

Many historians, particularly those who support Argentina's claim to ownership of South Georgia, believe that de la Roche was wrong, and that he had in fact sighted Beauchene Island, 800 miles further away. This theory is highly suspect, as Beauchene Island does not possess the high mountains or the bays specifically referred to in de la Roche's account. {map here too}

Several thousand troops from Argentina seized the disputed Falkland Islands, located in the south Atlantic Ocean, from Great Britain. Her Majesty's Government, led by the then Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, took the possessions back the following June. Britain's fight with Argentina would be called the Falkland Islands War, also known as the Falklands, the Malvinas or the South Atlantic War. The short, undeclared conflict between the two nations was fought over claims to Islas Malvinas and neighboring smaller islands. Argentina had laid aside claims to the territories since the 19th century; but, spurred by a long dispute over South Georgia Island and political expediency, the military government of Argentina invaded the Falklands. A British naval task force headed toward the war zone by late April. British forces established a beachhead in late May. With the surrender of the Argentine garrison at Stanley on June the 14th, the bitter winter fight essentially had ended, but not without severe losses on both sides.

Second of April, 2007: The Arch-basilica of Saint John in Laterano, located in Rome, is the oldest church in Rome (although much rebuilt and expanded). After ten years in construction, Constantine dedicated the Lateran structure, located north and east of the Colosseum. In that sense it is the mother church of all churches.

In the 4th century AD, when Christian worshippers prepared to build larger structures, architectural models based on pagan temples were unsuitable, but not simply for their pagan associations. Pagan cult and sacrifices occurred outdoors under the open sky in the sight of the gods, with the temple, housing cult figures and the treasury. The usable model at hand, when Emperor Constantine I wanted to memorialize his faith, was the familiar, conventional architecture of roman-style basilicas. These buildings had a center nave with one aisle at each side. The apse stood at one end. On this raised platform sat the bishop and priests. Other Constantinian Basilicas: Ste. Mary Major, Old Saint Peter's Basilica, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher and the Church of the Nativity.

Constantine took over from his rivals in 312AD, ending the persecution of Christians throughout the empire. Pope Sylvester the First, Archbishop of Rome, lived at Lateran and expanded the residence, added a church and baptistry. The complex remained the official home of all Popes (although during this time it was ravaged by barbarians and wrecked by earthquakes) until the move to Avignon (1309-77). Its most recent face-lift was during the baroque epoch (18th Century), by the architect Alessandro Galilei (1735).

The Lateran basilica was the site of a second anniversary remembrance of Pope John-Paul II on April 2, 2007. A mass held at Saint Peter's later in the day was led by Pope Benedict XVI. The Pope would not attend Monday's ceremony at the Lateran basilica in order to complete the official investigation into John Paul's life, a key step in the process of beatification (blessedness) and canonization (sainthood), which had been placed on the fast-track. The Vatican's procedures dictate that a miracle attributed to the candidate's intercession be confirmed before beatification and requires an additional miracle for canonization. This process reached a major milepost, when on May 1st 2011, John-Paul II was declared blessed by his successor. Ironically perhaps, John-Paul II holds the record for recognizing special persons of holiness in the Catholic Church.
April 3, 1854: Because of all the gold found in California, the United States Mint opened a branch in San Francisco on this date. Over $4 million was issued in the first production year. The current San-Fran mint is not the original structure:

The 1854 gold dollar denomination was the first year of what would be called the Type II design, or Indian Princess, which was similar to the $3 coin design introduced in that year, too.$1Type2Gold1854.htm The San Francisco Mint would first issue a $3 coin in 1855. A small sample of US Gold is Here.

April 4, 1949: One of the cornerstones of American Foreign Policy for half a century, the North Atlantic Treaty, establishing NATO, was signed by twelve Nations in Washington DC. Although the treaty contemplated action in the event of a communist (USSR) attack against western Europe, the treaty provisions of mutual support were first invoked upon the attack against the United States in 2001 by Islamic terrorists.

“In my opinion, the North Atlantic alliance was formed not just to protect itself against the Soviet Union, but rather, more generally, to defend western values, the European way of life (from the social and security viewpoint). It does not come as a surprise, therefore, that USA or Canada are also NATO members. These countries were born by the European civilisation.”

from a speech by singer Svyatoslav Vakarchuk, UNDP Goodwill Ambassador for Youth in Ukraine, presented at the 2007 conference “New Ukraine in a new Europe,” as the Ukraine considers joining NATO (as are Poland and Georgia, among other nations of eastern Europe). The desire of the countries to utilize the NATO umbrella has heightened the tension between Russian leader Putin and the Western NATO Powers. It is one of the issues that a new US President faced in 2009 and 2010. He continued to them face again in 2014, as Putin has judged the west too weak, indecisive and ineffectual. Europe is too dependent on Russia's Gas to do anything decisive, so the wound festers.

Le 5 avril, C'est sa bonne fête Irène: Irène, d'un mot grec qui signifie paix, est arrêtée avec ses sœurs à Salonique par le gouverneur romain, en 305, sous le règne de Dioclétien. Comme les jeunes filles refusent d'apostasier (c'est à dire de « renoncer à leur religion »), elles sont brûlées vives. Diocletian resigned the same year (after 20 years in office): Foxe labeled the end of Diocletian's reign as having completed the tenth period of Primitive Persecutions:

April 5, 1933: This was no feast day. On this date Roosevelt claimed the right to confiscate all gold holdings within the US and pay for it with Federal Reserve notes or other legal tender. The price was $20 an ounce, soon thereafter the dollar was devalued and the gold price (where some ownership was legal) would be $32 / ounce. Ignore the law and if caught face 10 years in prison and a $10.000 fine (at a time when you could buy 2 houses for that amount of money).
April 6, 1320: It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom -- for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself. The Declaration of Arbroath -- per communitatem Scocie. One may not dispute that the document subsequently played an influential role in the history of the Scots national identity and in the common belief (whether based in legal reality or not) that in Scotland it is the people that are sovereign, rather than the monarch or parliament, as it is in England. The Declaration of Arbroath, directed at the Pope, only resulted in a short peace between Scottish and English forces. One of the signers of the decree was the head of the Keith Clan, no ordinary group of Scots patriots, they migrated from Germany, not willing to live as Roman vassals. Keith Clan History is here.

Robert, the chief of the Catti in 1010, fought against the Norsemen. He slew Comus, the leader of the Viking invaders, and thus gained a complete victory, for which Malcolm II gave him the lands of Keith in East-Lothian. He was succeeded by his son Robert, who also fought against the Norsemen in Fife. Somewhat later on the 7th of November, 1324, Robert I. granted a charter of the lands of Keith Marischal to Sir Robert Keith and his heirs, and the office of Great Marischal of Scotland, on account of his support against the English. The role of the Marischal was to serve as custodian of the Royal Regalia of Scotland, and to protect the king's person when attending parliament. In short, the Keiths, wha hae wi Wallace bled, are just some of the Scots, wham Bruce has aften led. Go to the top of the linked page o learn about the Drummond family, another clan standing with Bruce for freedom, which no honest man gives up.

April 7, 529: Emperor Cæsar, Flavius, Justinianus, Pious, Fortunate, Renowned, Conqueror, and Triumpher, ever Augustus (also known as the Eastern Roman Emperor Justinian I) issues the first draft of Corpus Juris Civilis. His body of Civil laws becomes, one could argue, the fundamental work in Western (European) jurisprudence.

The precepts of the law are these: to live honestly, to injure no one and to give every man his due. The study of law consists of two branches -- the law public and the law private. The former relates to the welfare of the Roman State; the latter accrues to the advantage of the individual citizen. Of private law, one may say it is of threefold origin, being collected from the precepts of nature, from those of the law of individual nations or from those of the former civil law of Rome. -- IURIS PRÆCEPTA SUNT HÆC HONESTE VIVERE ALTERUM NON LÆDERE SUUM CUIQUE TRIBUERE -- also translated as "The precepts of the law are these: To live honorably, not to injure another, to give each his due" [Justinian, Institutes, Book 1, Title 1, Sec. 3].

Everything therefore has been completed by the aid of Our Lord God Jesus Christ, who has rendered the task possible for Us as well as for Our ministers, and We have already collected the principal constitutions and digested them into twelve books, in the Code which is distinguished by Our name. Afterwards, applying Ourselves to the preparation of a very extensive work, We permitted the aforesaid illustrious man to collect and compile with certain changes the contents of many most valuable treatises of antiquity, which at that time were almost utterly confused and disconnected. But while making Our inquiries, We were reminded by the aforesaid eminent man that there were almost two thousand books written by the ancient jurists, and more than three million lines produced by them, all of which it would be necessary to read and thoroughly examine, and from which must be chosen whatever would be best. This has been accomplished by the grace of God and the favor of the Supreme Trinity, in conformity to Our orders ... from Second Preface -- Given on the seventeenth of the Kalends of January, during the third Consulship of Our Lord Justinian, 533.

The thirty-eight years of Justinian's reign are the most respected period of the later empire. Full of enthusiasm for the memories of past glory, he set for himself, and achieved, the heavy task of reviving a Rome. The many achievements of this talented leader include military triumphs, legal reform, ecclesiastical polity and architectural significance. His policy of restoring the empire as a civilizing force dominates all. Great, powerful and united; of these many features of his reign -- each of them epoch-making -- we can give no more than the merest outline . . . . See also

April 7, 1811: Franz Joseph Rudigier was born on April 7, 1811 in Partenen, Austria (1811 – 1884). He became the Archbishop of Linz in 1852. During the period after the laws of 1868 he resisted and was even imprisoned. “The laws of 1868” were nationalist laws corresponding to the Kulturkampf (Cultural Struggle) in Prussia that attempted to restrict the influence and activity of the religious institutions (Roman Catholic Church in Austria). The Roman Catholic Church began the process of his beatification in 1909.
April 8, 1795: Caroline of Brunswick-Lüneburg (born in Braunschweig, Germany) marries the future King George IV of England on this date. She and her spouse separated in 1796. In 1820 when George was about ascend to the throne, he offered her substantial sums of money to remain away from England. She returned to England, however. The government attempted unsuccessfully to dissolve the marriage and prevent the title of queen from passing to her. George IV was crowned as expected at the death of his father in 1821, but Caroline died suddenly 19 days later, an unexpected end to the conflict. At Braunschweig is a stunning 12th Century Cathedral dedicated to Saint Blasius, a city's whose symbol is the Burglöwe from 1166AD (representing Henry the Lion who made this city his home). Braunschweig is also the hometown of a man named George, who would be the first ruler of that name in England.

April 8, 1974: In the 4th inning, Monday night at the old Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium, Hammerin' Hank Aaron breaks baseball's greatest record, exceeding Babe Ruth's home run achievements. Mr. Aaron hit his 715th. History records that the Atlanta Braves beat the L.A. Dodgers 7-4 that night and the stadium set a record for attendance. Thirty-one years later in 9-year old Turner Stadium, the Braves, in the team's first home game of the 2005 season, almost broke the attendance level set in 1974. The Braves beat the Mets 3 to 1, in case you have forgotten.

50 years later - April 8, 1974: This is the day a great eclipse will appear over North America. The event arises out of Mexico, heading northeast until it exits the US in northern Maine.
April 9, 1413: Today, Henry V (House of Lancaster) officially became the King of England. During his short reign, he consolidated the crown of England and France into one person. You may remember him best through Shakespeare's docu-histories written two-hundred years later. On the plains near the village of Agincourt, Henry gave battle to a superior pursuing French army. Exhausted, outnumbered, he still defeated the French, taking captives. Born in Wales (of the Royal House of the red rose), he died at Bois de Vincennes, France. His remains are now at rest at Westminster Abbey in London.

In celebration of this day in 1682, Robert Cavelier de La Salle discovers the mouth of the Mississippi River, claims the area for France and names it Louisiana. Less than 200 years later, Robert E. Lee would surrender the Army of Northern Virginia (26,765 troops) to Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia, effectively ending the War between the States. His farewell address, in the form of a General Order, would be made the next day.'s_Farewell_Address Less than 80 years later, US forces surrender on the Bataan Peninsula. Three years later Dietrich Bonhoeffer would be murdered by the Nazi regime at the start of the last month of the 3rd Reich. Check today to see which of these events is remembered on the nightly news. Also too on this day, two Americans of vastly different talents passed away -- Frank Lloyd Wright (1959) and Willie Stargell (2001).

April 9, 1598: Today we celebrate the birth of Johannes Crüger in Gross-Breesen, Germany. Crüger was a composer and music theorist. He composed the music to Jesu, meine Freude, Nun danket alle Gott and Herzliebster Jesu, was hast du Verbrochen. From 1622 until his death he was the cantor at the Nikolai church in Berlin. His most important book of theory was called Synopsis Musica (1630).

April 9, 1928: In Atlanta, Augustus Lukeman unveils his work, after having blasted Gutzon Borglum's efforts from the granite face of Stone Mountain (see April 1, 1925 entry). Mayor Jimmy Walker of the City of New York was there at the unveiling. After graduating from St. Francis Xavier College and New York University Law School, Walker worked as a songwriter. He only had one success, Will You Love Me in December as You Do in May (1905). In his later years, Jimmy Walker was also president of the Majestic Record Company until his death on 18th November, 1946, the scandals of his political years perhaps forgotten.

The April 9th Tragedy (also known as Tbilisi Massacre, Tbilisi Tragedy) refers to the events in Tbilisi, Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic, on April 9, 1989, when an anti-Soviet demonstration was dispersed by the Soviet Army, resulting in 20 deaths and hundreds of injuries. April 9 is now remembered as the Day of National Unity (Georgian: ეროვნული ერთიანობის დღე erovnuli ertianobis dghe). & There is a 7 minute Youtube video of the day's event, but I'm not going to post it. For those of you who do not remember, this year was the year when the Soviet Empire began to unravel.

Thus says the LORD: 
"A voice is heard in Ramah, 
Lamentations and bitter weeping. 
Rachel cries for her children. 
She refuses comfort, 
Because her children are no more."
Thus says the LORD [your God]: 
"Restrain your voice from weeping 
And your eyes from tears. 
Your work will be rewarded; 
I declare it," says the LORD. 
.... Jeremiah 31:15-16

April 10th is the 100th day of the year (101st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. In all years, 265 days remain. This is the day in 837AD that Halley's Comet came closest to the earth (3.2 million miles). In 1912 a certain unsinkable vessel leaves South Hampton with the New World her final destination. In five days she would be gone. If you were born this day, you share a common birthday with James V, King of Scotland (1512) and Georgia Statesman Button Gwinnett, a signer of the Declararation, who was killed in a duel by another Georgia signer during the war. Princess Ariane of the Netherlands celebrates her 6th birthday in 2013. In 1606, James, King of England, Scotland, France & Ireland approved and signed the first Charter of the Colony of Virginia.

[WE] GRANT and agree, that the said Sir Thomas Gates, Sir George Somers, Richard Hackluit, and Edward-Maria Wingfield, Adventurers of and for our City of London, and all such others, as are, or shall be, joined unto them of that Colony, shall be called the first Colony; And they shall and may begin their said first Plantation and Habitation, at any Place upon the said-Coast of Virginia or America, where they shall think fit and convenient . . .

Three years later, on July 28, 1609, Admiral George Somers shipwrecked 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 I. 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." For leadership, courage at sea and the other survival skills Admiral Sir George Somers showed, the islands became the Somers Isles. This is still Bermuda's official alternate name.

April 10, 1829: Today marks the birth of Johannes Janssen in Xanten, Germany. Janssen is noted for his eight volume work: Geschichte des deutschen Volkes seit dem Ausgang des Mittelalters (1876-1894), which made historic contributions to German cultural history, especially 15th century studies. His viewpoint was blunt and blatantly pro-Catholic and anti-Protestant, so that his books stirred up quite a controversy.

April 10, 1835: On this date history records the birth of Ferdinand Hilgard in Speyer, Germany. He changed his name to Henry Villard when he immigrated to the United States in 1853. In the U.S. he wrote first for German-American newspapers and later for larger mainstream English-language papers, including The New York Herald and The New York Tribune. He then turned to investments in transportation, becoming the president of the Oregon and California Railroad as well as the Oregon Steamship Company. In 1881 he gained control of the Northern Pacific Railroad. He also bought The New York Evening Post in 1881. You remember him best, perhaps, for founding the Edison General Electric Company (1889). Four years later he changed its name to the General Electric (GE) Company -- you light up your life.

April 10, 1872: Citizens of the great State of Nebraska planted over a million trees on the first Arbor Day. The occasion fulfilled the dream of Julius Sterling Morton, former governor of the Nebraska Territory and newspaperman. Mr. Morton had lobbied for an official day encourage the planting of trees. In 1885, the State moved the date to April 22nd in honor of his birthday. By 1907, every state had an Arbor Day. Schoolchildren were urged to consider the planting of a tree as a patriotic activity, as well as a sound investment in the community. Arbor Day is now officially celebrated worldwide on the last Friday in April.

A large bronze by Rudulph Evans of Mr. Morton was given by Nebraska to the National Statuary Hall Collection in 1937. Its location is the Hall of Columns in the U.S. Capitol complex. Julius Morton was U.S. Secretary of Agriculture under the Cleveland administration. Arbor Day is not like other holidays. Each of those reposes on the past, while Arbor Day proposes for the future.

April 10, 1951: Besides being a great day in Tennessee and Nashville history, on this day the West German parliament passes the Montanmitbestimmungsgesetz, a labor law giving the German workforce a voice in the decision making processes of companies in the iron, steel and coal industries.
April 11, 1689: William III and Mary II were crowned as joint sovereigns of Britain. The Reformation had made quite a personal impression on England's monarchy. Unlike France, by the end of the 17th century England had become generally a Protestant nation. In 1683 Princess Anne married Prince George of Denmark. Although her father, James II, converted to Roman Catholicism in 1672, Anne remained Protestant and acquiesced in James's overthrow by the anti-Roman Catholic "Glorious Revolution of 1688", which brought her sister Mary and Mary's husband, William of Orange, to the throne. On William's death in 1702, Queen Anne restored to favor John Churchill, making him Duke of Marlborough. As captain-general of the British army, Marlborough (Winston S. Churchill's forebear), won a series of victories over the French in the War of the Spanish Succession.

During Queen Anne's reign the kingdoms of England and Scotland were united (1707), contributing to Scottish and later Scots-Irish immigration. She died in London on August 1, 1714, having no surviving children. A German cousin, George, Elector of Hannover, followed Queen Anne, as King George I of Great Britain, by the terms of the Act of Settlement, passed by Parliament in 1701. It secured the succession of the English crown to members of the House of Hannover of the Protestant faith, unless Queen Anne, the last of the Protestant Stuarts, provided a suitable heir. Anne's husband died in 1708 without living issue, their many children all dying at a young age.

April 11, 1713: The Peace of Utrecht was signed, ending Queen Anne's War (The War of Spanish Succession). Spain ceded Gibraltar in perpetuity to the English by the agreement. France gave its Maritime provinces in Canada to Britain. Specifically, the French colony of Acadia, now known as the Canadian Province of Nova Scotia, was transferred to Great Britain. Many of the Acadians had come from western France to fish and farm. Those who would not swear allegiance to the British Crown were quickly and harshly deported. Many of these (those who survived the trek at least) went to the bayou country of Louisiana, which would become Spanish land, for a time under the treaty ending the next great conflict -- The Seven Years War (French-Indian War). In 1803 possession of the swampland would change twice more.

April 11, 1803: On February 28, 1803, Congress appropriated money for a small U. S. Army unit to explore the two rivers in the West, beyond America's boundaries, and to meet with the unknown Native Nations. These army ambassadors would inform the Natives that American traders would soon come to buy their furs, in competition with the fur traders from Great Britain, who came south from Canada. The Spanish would send an expedition to apprehend the American explorers, but fail in this endeavor.

President Jefferson had sent James Madison to assist Robert Livingston, his Ambassador to French Court of Emperor Napoléan, in the purchase of New Orleans. The counter-offer, made through French Minister of Foreign Affairs, Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord, on April 11, 1803, was for a cash-sale of the entire Louisiana Territory, or no deal. The arrangement, concluded by the end of the month, was without authorization or knowledge of anyone in Washington. Meanwhile, Jefferson sought and found the leaders for this expedition. By the time title changed hands in December 1803, the Lewis and Clark Expedition was already at the ancient town of Cahokia (Cahokia is the largest prehistoric site in North America, sitting across the Mississippi River from Saint Louis) preparing for the great adventure that lay ahead.

Reenactment in Charlestown Harbor The tragic destruction of Dresden, Germany (February 13-14, 1945) is made famous in Kurt Vonnegut Jr.'s Slaughterhouse Five (1969). Read about the raid on the Web at: Some would still say the loss was unnecessary to the U.S. War effort, done at the request of the Soviets, to help their efforts to subdue the enemy along the Russian front. Vonnegut, a P.O.W. witnessed the bombing and its aftermath. He passed away 62 years later, after a long and fruitful career (on April 11, 2007). "Some things about living still weren't quite right, though. April, for instance, still drove people crazy by not being springtime." from Harrison Bergeron, Kurt Vonnegut (1961); see also

April 12, 1811: The first settlers (from New York State) arrive to colonize the Pacific Coast of U.S. Territory at Cape Disappointment, in what would become the State Washington. Regardless of whether or not America had claim of this area (Oregon Territory), as part of its recent Louisiana purchase or as part of its entitlement after the Revolutionary War, the diplomatic dispute with Britain over sovereign rights was just beginning -- Fifty-four Forty or Fight.

Saint Pierre and Sacré-CœurApril 12, 1881: An artist's view (Jules-Émile Élisée-Maclet) of L'église Saint Pierre and Basilique Sacré-Cœur atop Montomartre. Many more paintings of this ancient place overlooking Paris at Saint Pierre sits on the spot where Saint Denis (patron saint of Paris) lost his head, which he picked up and carried north to the place where his Basilica stands today ( The artist, Élisée-Maclet remains famous for Paris street scenes (e.g. Indeed, born in Lihons-en-Santerre, Picardie (April 12, 1881), Maclet began his career while still a choirboy. He moved to Montmartre in 1906, where he began painting the Montmartre landscape, anticipating the themes that Utrillo would eventually depict. He drew colorful scenes elsewhere in the city, in France and in Italy.

April 12, 1945: The President was at the Little Whitehouse at Warm Springs, Georgia on April 12th. During his few weeks as Vice President, Harry S. Truman scarcely saw President Roosevelt. He had received no prior briefing on the atomic bomb. He was unaware of the unfolding difficulties with the Soviet Union. These and a host of other problems became Truman's own issues, on April 12, 1945, when Roosevelt's died suddenly. The new leader of the free world said of that day, I felt like the moon, the stars and all the planets had fallen on me.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt was sitting for a portrait, when he complained of a pain in the back of his head at around 1:00 p.m. At 1:15 he passed-out and never regained consciousness, dying 2 hours and 20 minutes later from a massive cerebral hemorrhage. Click HERE for more information.

Of Roosevelt's full legacy, there may be question; but of Truman's courage and abilities in the face of crisis, there can be no doubt.

April 12, 1954: Bill Haley and the Comets recorded Rock Around the Clock for Decca Records. The release of the song, cut at the now condominium crazed Pythian Temple in New York City (“a big, barn-like building with great echo”), came a month later. The 1955 film Blackboard Jungle, featured this new rock ’n’ roll tune and made it a hit on June 29, 1955 (when it reached the #1 spot on the charts). There it stayed for eight solid weeks, remaining on the charts for a total of 24 weeks. The record has now sold over 25,000,000 (million) copies.

April 12, 1966: The Braves team (National League) played its first season-opener in Atlanta against the Pittsburgh, Pirates. Mayor Ivan Allen, who had been instrumental in having the Braves move from Milwaukee, threw out the first pitch. While this Atlanta Braves team broke no records that year, a number of stellar players are on the field that day. Among the starting line-up were Hall of Famer and home-run king Hank Aaron in right field; Felipe Alou in centerfield (onetime Montreal manager); Hall of Fame awardee Eddie Matthews at third base; Lee Thomas at first base (a Philadelphia general manager); Joe Torre was catching (a New York Yankee manager); and Tony Cloninger was pitching (New York Yankee bullpen coach). In a feat that would not occur in today's reliance on relief pitchers, Cloninger pitched 13 innings before losing 3-2 on a home run by a young man named Willie Stargell.

Wilver Dornell Stargell became a leader on the Pirate team, filling in for a sorely missed Roberto Clemente, who would die tragically. His leadership helped the Pirates win World Championships in 1971 and in 1979, when he shared National League MVP honors. Stargell would hit 475 career home-runs, entering Baseball's Hall of Fame in 1988.

The Atlanta Braves won their first home game in Atlanta, beating the New York Mets 8-4, just 10 days later (April 22nd). In this Atlanta Braves first season, Hank Aaron hit his first home-run of the season in Atlanta against the Houston Astros. This was Aaron's 405th career home-run. Over the next eight years, he would hit over 300 more to become the Major League's all-time home-run king, surpassing Babe Ruth.

April 13, 1598: King Henry IV of France issues the Édict of Nantes, allowing freedom of worship and governance to the Huguenots (Protestants) of France. Eventhough the Edict of Nantes would not put an end to all the pogroms and the persecutions, whose victims were the Protestant life-blood of France - they would begin again with more force in second half of 17th Century - the Édict did terminate what has become known as the Wars of Religion, while legally (for a time at least) affixing the status of the reformers in the Kingdom.

HENRY par la grâce de Dieu roi de France et de Navarre A tous présents et à venir.  Salut !
Pour cette occasion, ayant reconnu cette affaire de très grande importance et digne de très bonne considération, après avoir repris les cahiers des plaintes de nos sujets catholiques, ayant aussi permis à nos sujets de la religion prétendue réformée de s'assembler par députés pour dresser les leurs et mettre ensemble toutes leurs remontrances et, sur ce fait, conféré avec eux par diverses fois, et revu les édits précédents, nous avons jugé nécessaire de donner maintenant sur le tout à tous nos sujets une loi générale, claire, nette et absolue, par laquelle ils soient réglés sur tous les différends qui sont ci-devant sur ce survenus entre eux, et y pourront encore survenir ci-après, et dont les uns et les autres aient sujet de se contenter, selon que la qualité du temps le peut porter.
Pour ces causes, ayant avec l'avis des princes de notre sang, autres princes et officiers de la Couronne et autres grands et notables personnages de notre Conseil d'État étant près de nous, bien et diligemment pesé et considéré toute cette affaire, avons, par cet Édit perpétuel et irrévocable, dit, déclaré et ordonné, disons, déclarons et ordonnons:
En témoin de quoi nous avons signé les présentes de notre propre main et à icelles afin que ce soit chose ferme et stable à toujours, fait mettre et apposer notre scel. Donné à Nantes au mois d'avril, l'an de grace 1598, et de nôtre règne le neuvième. -- Signé: HENRY. J'ai trouvé le texte des Édit intégral.

HENRY, by the grace of God, King of France and Navarre, To all present and future. Salut !
For this occasion, having recognized this as a case of great importance, worthy of great consideration, and, after reviewing the many exceptions taken over the specifications by our Catholic subjects, we also allowed our subjects of the supposed reformed faith to by assembly to prepare and collect their own admonitions and; therefore, conferred with [both of] them in various times and reviewed previous drafts, we have found it necessary now to give it to all our subjects a clear general law, clear and absolute by which to settle all disputes that are referred to as occurring on them now, and may still occur in the future, which both sides desire to satisfy, as at this time can resolve.
For these reasons, We have, with the advice of the princes of our blood, other princes and officers of the Crown and other major and significant figures in the Council of State who are close to us, well and diligently weighed and considered in the whole all matters, and by this Edict perpetual, irrevocable, hereby have declared, ordered and say, declare and ordain [the following] below:
In witness whereof we have signed these presents in our own hand and thereon, so that it becomes something firm and stable forever, and made to put our seal [on it]. Given at Nantes in April, the year of grace 1598, and the reign of our ninth. Partial translation

The Édict of Nantes, in effect, created a “State within a State” -- thereafter, the existence of this peculiar status will have significant consequences, because it runs square up against the will of the integrationists, who want a seamless society, as well as the Bourbon heirs to Henri, who wish to consolidate and expand the absolute-sovereign power of the French monarchy. This state of affairs bred intolerance, eventually leading to the French Revolution with all its its anti-clerical animus.

One is tempted to think that the persecutions in France died out after Louis XIV, but that would be an unfortunate conclusion. For instance consider the life of poor Marie Durand (1712-1776), La prisonnière de la Tour de Constance à Aigues-Mortes, dans l' Ardèche. Rich in Spirit, imprisoned at age 18 (August 25, 1730), she would spend 38 years in jail, along with many others because of her Protestant beliefs. Le 14 Avril 1768 -- Toutes les prisonnières de la Tour sont libérées. The release came in spite instructions from the Royal Government to the contrary, and in 1787, finally, and Édict of Tolerance was rendered. Soon, thereafter, all faiths would come under revolutionary fire in France. Protestant ou catholique, l'Ardéchois (dans l'Ardèche ajourd'hui) a mené un combat incessant pour affirmer sa foi:

April 13, 1777 -- Battle of Bound Brook: Among the actions taking place in New Jersey during the War of American Independence, the Battle of Bound Brook represents an early, though not crushing, defeat of Washington's Troops, still on the rebound from losing New York City to far superior British numbers, even after the surprise at Trenton and later Princeton. Indeed it was these victories that made the British more determined to deliver a set back. Success in the attack came mostly from surprise, but the support of the attack by mercenary forces was crucial. Regular British columns of the day were often spearheaded by German soldiers of fortune, the shocktroop Hessians. The picture shows Convivial Hall, site of the Battle of Bound Brook on April 13, 1777.

This painting by John Ford Clymer was commissioned by the American Cyanamid Company. The company once used the Van Horne House for offices and restored the property in the 1940's. Am-Cy one of the oldest chemical companies in the USA (later part of American Home Products, now part of Badische Aniline & Soda Fabrik (BASF)), was one of the companies that benefited from the breaking of Dupont's explosive monopoly (technically the Powder Trust). Also known for fertilizers, dyestuffs and medicines, you probably know it best for Melmac®. More on John Clymer is HERE. General Washington allegedly unfurled the Stars and Stripes (sewn by Betsy Ross) as the national flag in 1777 on a site overlooking Bound Brook sometime after the battle near June 14th-Flag Day.

The British forces never consolidated their gains after the Battle of Bound Brook, preferring to withdraw to New Brunswick after their avenging strike. In succeeding weeks, the Americans would regroup; and later, in June of 1777, Lord Stirling, close friend of General Washington and second in command of the Continental Army, would lead American forces and achieve a narrow victory over the British in the Battle of Short Hills. By September 26th, however, the British captured Philadelphia, making inevitable a bitter winter in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.

April 13, 1803: Thomas Jefferson (third President of the USA) celebrated his 60th birthday on April 13th, while in office. He was born April 2, 1743, under the Julian calendar then in use in England. When the English adopted the Gregorian regime, he updated his observance to the 13th. He died on July 4th 1826, the same date as his rival John Adams, the second President.

April 14, 1859: Novelist, satirist, keen observer of the human condition, Charles Dickens, publishes A Tale Of Two Cities. The novel concerns the conditions of Paris (and London) at the time of la Révolution française and the jour du Bastille -- it was the best of times and the worst of times, depending on your status. Of the attack on the Bastille (14th of July), he wrote:

With a roar that sounded as if all the breath in France had been shaped into the detested word, the living sea rose, wave on wave, depth on depth, and overflowed the city to that point. Alarm-bells ringing, drums beating, the sea raging and thundering on its new beach, the attack begun ....

The first stone of the Bastille was laid (April 22, 1370) by order of King Charles V (1364-1380). The original purpose of the Bastille was to act as merely a fortified city-gate, but it was later turned into a fortress by Charles VI. It began to be used as a prison in the 17th century. Following the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789, the structure was demolished. REMAINS OF THE FOUNDATIONS -- OF THE BASTILLE -- THE LIBERTY TOWER -- DISCOVERED IN 1899 -- AND TRANSPORTED TO THIS LOCATION --
April 14, 1912: The maiden voyage came to an early end, shortly before midnight on the sea. While conveying 2,200 passengers from Southampton, England to New York City, a true Titan struck an iceberg off the coast of Halifax, Nova Scotia. HMS Titanic sunk without much of a trace. The Hymn, Nearer My God to Thee, has often been suggested as the last tune played by the musicians on the Titanic; but what music did the crew and passengers hear? There are different versions of the hymn, all are set to the verses, written in 1841, by the English poet Sarah Fuller Flower Adams (1805-48). The English version is set to the tune Horbury composed in 1861 by John Bacchus Dykes (1823-1876). Methodists use the accompaniment Propior Deo composed by Sir Arthur Seymour Sullivan (1842-1900), while another American version (most recognizable one -- heard in a A Night to Remember (1958)) uses the tune Bethany (written in 1859) by Lowell Mason (1792-1872).

1. Nearer, my God to Thee,
Nearer to Thee.
E'en though it be a cross
That raiseth me,
Still all my song shall be.
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer to Thee.

2. Though like the wanderer,
The sun gone down,
Darkness be over me,
My rest a stone,
Yet in my dreams I'd be
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer to Thee.

3. There let my way appear
Steps unto heaven;
All that Thou sendest me
In mercy given;
Angels to beckon me
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer to Thee.

4. Then with my waking thoughts
Bright with Thy praise,
Out of my stony griefs
Bethel I'll raise,
So by my woes to be
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer to Thee.

5. Or if on joyful wing,
Cleaving the sky,
Sun, moon, and stars forgot,
Upward I fly,
Still all my song shall be,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer to Thee.

6. There in my Father’s home,
Safe and at rest,
There in my Saviour’s love,
Perfectly blest;
Age after age to be,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer to Thee.

Note: Verses 1-5 are by Adams, an additional verse 6 was written by Edward Henry Bickersteth, Jr.

Among the more than 1,500 passengers lost was Major Archibald Butt of Augusta, military aide to presidents Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft. From the Project Gutenberg text on the sinking of the Titanic comes this report of Butt's heroism and bravery:

Captain Smith and Major Archibald Butt, military aide to the President of the United States, were among the coolest men on board. A number of steerage passengers were yelling and screaming and fighting to get to the boats. Officers drew guns and told them that if they moved toward the boats they would be shot dead. Major Butt had a gun in his hand and covered the men who tried to get to the boats. The following story of his bravery was told by Mrs. Henry B. Harris, wife of the theatrical manager:

'The world should rise in praise of Major Butt. That man's conduct will remain in my memory forever. The American army is honored by him and the way he taught some of the other men how to behave when women and children were suffering that awful mental fear of death. Major Butt was near me and I noticed everything that he did. "When the order to man the boats came, the captain whispered something to Major Butt. The two of them had become friends. The major immediately became as one in supreme command. You would have thought he was at a White House reception. A dozen or more women became hysterical all at once, as something connected with a life-boat went wrong. Major Butt stepped over to them and said: "Really, you must not act like that; we are all going to see you through this thing." He helped the sailors rearrange the rope or chain that had gone wrong and lifted some of the women in with a touch of gallantry. Not only was there a complete lack of any fear in his manner, but there was the action of an aristocrat.

'When the time came he was a man to be feared. In one of the earlier boats fifty women, it seemed, were about to be lowered, when a man, suddenly panic-stricken, ran to the stern of it. Major Butt shot one arm out, caught him by the back of the neck and jerked him backward like a pillow. His head cracked against a rail and he was stunned. 'Sorry,' said Major Butt, 'women will be attended to first or I'll break every damned bone in your body.'

'The boats were lowered one by one, and as I stood by, my husband said to me, 'Thank God, for Archie Butt.' Perhaps Major Butt heard it, for he turned his face toward us for a second and smiled. Just at that moment, a young man was arguing to get into a life-boat, and Major Butt had a hold of the lad by the arm, like a big brother, and was telling him to keep his head and be a man. 'Major Butt helped those poor frightened steerage people so wonderfully, so tenderly and yet with such cool and manly firmness that he prevented the loss of many lives from panic. He was a soldier to the last. He was one of God's greatest noblemen, and I think I can say he was an example of bravery even to men on the ship.'

Miss Marie Young, who was a music instructor to President Roosevelt's children and had known Major Butt during the Roosevelt occupancy of the White House, told this story of his heroism. 'Archie himself put me into the boat, wrapped blankets about me and tucked me in as carefully as if we were starting on a motor ride. He, himself, entered the boat with me, performing the little courtesies as calmly and with as smiling a face as if death were far away, instead of being but a few moments removed from him. When he had carefully wrapped me up he stepped upon the gunwale of the boat, and lifting his hat, smiled down at me. "Good-bye, Miss Young," he said. "Good luck to you, and don't forget to remember me to the folks back home." Then he stepped back and waved his hand to me as the boat was lowered. I think I was the last woman he had a chance to help, for the boat went down shortly after we cleared the suction zone.'

April 15th: In addition to Major Archibald Butt, four other Titanic passengers had Georgia ties, three of whom would perish in the early morning hours of April 15, 1912. Wealthy businessman and philanthropist Isidor Straus was born in Bavaria in 1845; his family immigrated to the United States in 1854. They settled in Talbotton, Georgia, where Isidor was educated at the Collingsworth Institute, a private religious school for boys. The Straus family lived in Georgia for almost ten years, moving briefly to Columbus in 1863, when Isidor left for Europe with the intention of purchasing a steamboat for running the Union blockade. This attempt failed, however, and Straus spent the next two years traveling in Europe and learning bookkeeping. When the Civil War ended, Straus met his family in New York, where they opened a crockery business. The family business flourished, soon they had opened silverware, glass and china departments at Macy's in New York. In 1888 the Straus family purchased a controlling interest in Macy's. Isidor Straus was a Macy's partner from that time until his death. By 1912, he had amassed a considerable fortune and was well known and respected for his philanthropy. The story of he and his wife aboard the Titanic is well known; she refused to leave his side to board a life boat, saying No, we are too old; we will die together. We have been living together for many years. Where you go, I go. Both perished that night.

The remaining Titanic passengers with Georgia ties were Mr. and Mrs. Jacques Futrell. Jacques Futrell, a writer, was born in Pike County in 1875. In 1895, he married Atlanta-born May [last name uncertain]. Futrell had worked as a journalist and theatrical manager but was best known for his detective stories, in which he introduced the fictional character Professor S.F.X. Van Dusen, better known as The Thinking Machine. Futrell specialized in writing mystery stories involving a locked room, the most famous being The Problem of Cell 13, in which the Thinking Machine escapes from a death row prison cell. Unfortunately, Futrell could not cheat death on the Titanic, but he did insist that his wife board a life boat. May Futrell was the only native Georgian to survive the voyage. Twice she boarded life boats, but disembarked to stay with her husband, before, at last, he forced her to stay on one. Her last sight of him was standing next to John Jacob Astor smoking a cigarette. May Futrell provided the world with an authoritative eyewitness account of the sinking, a two-part newspaper series she wrote only two weeks after that night to remember.

April 15, 1450 -- Battle of Formigny (Hundred Years' War): Formigny is not indicated on many modern road maps. It sits about halfway between Carentan and Bayeux, and is only a few miles south of Omaha Beach, a landing site of the Allied Invasion during Second World War (1944). The many visitors to the modern D-Day landing region may well puzzle over the finely-detailed, life-size statue of Generals Clermont and Richemont in the crossroads of this very small village. Nearby is the small church (1486) that Clermont built. The destruction of Kyriell's army left the English without enough troops in France to protect the holdings in Normandy. The entire region fell to the French in just a few months after the battle of Formigny. The French advance continued, and quickly swept up all English possessions save Calais. Today Formigny is a commune in the département of Calvados in the Basse-Normandie region of France.

Santa Maria delle Grazie, 
Church of the Last Supper in MilanoApril 15, 1452: Leonardo (d.1519), Italian painter, sculptor, scientist, visionary, another keen observer of the human condition, was born in Vinci near Florence. Da Vinci apprenticed to the painters Verrocchio and Antonio Pollaiuolo. He was accepted to the Florentine painters' guild at age twenty, but just a few (17) paintings of his survive that clearly can be attributed to him. These include: “The Last Supper” in Milan, the “Mona Lisa” and “The Virgin and Child with St. Anne” in the Louvre. He tried to express his immense knowledge of the world by simply looking at things. The secret he said was saper vedere, to know how to see. His final “Visions of the End of the World” was contained in a sketchbook. It depicted his sense of the unified forces of nature. His use of a smoky atmosphere (sfumato) helped create an impression of lifelikeness. In the late Fall of 2005 The History Channel aired its biography of his life, worth watching in repeat.

Chapel of St. Hubert 
Amboise, FranceOn April 23, 1519, Leonardo wrote his last and final will. Originally, Leonardo was buried in the cloister of the church of Saint Florentin in the Chateau of Amboise. His mortal remains disappeared, due to the tomb's violation, during the Wars of Religion of XVI century, when Saint Florentin fell into ruin. After 300 years the site was excavated and an anonymous skeleton was found near an inscription that, for a chance, contained some of the letters "L E O N A R D O." The bones were moved into to the Chapelle de St-Hubert, the last resting place of Leonardo da Vinci.

April 15, 1638: Forces of Imperial Japan (Shogun Tokugawa's army) capture the castle of Hara, on the Japanese island of Amakusa, held by 30,000 Christian troops under Masada Shiro. The defenders set fire to the castle, and all perished in the flames or by the sword. From that day until 1873 (235 years later), Christianity was banned in Japan under penalty of death, yet it did not disappear. More HERE The Japanese kingdom expelled the Portugese at this time and Japan closed itself to the Western influence. Imagine the world, if the empire had embraced a peaceful solution and achieved detent with the West.

April 15, 1865: The 16th President Abraham Lincoln died several hours after he was shot by John Wilkes Booth in a private box at Ford’s Theatre in Washington DC (on the 14th). His Vice-President, Andrew Johnson, became the 17th President (1865-1869) upon the assassination. The first U.S. Mourning Stamp was issued for him, a 15-cent denomination in black.

The Postal Act of March 3, 1863, defined letter mail as first class and set the rate at 3 cents for each 1/2 ounce on all domestic mail over any distance. The Foreign Mail rate was set at double the domestic rate, unless otherwise set by treaty. A 15 cent issue was normally used to pay a 15 cent rate to France under a 1857 postal treaty. The rate to England was 24 cents in 1866 and to Germany it was 10, 15 or 30 cents, depending on the individual treaty with the different German states. Most of the covers seen bearing Lincoln's likeness were addressed to France and are rarely found. Its use on domestic mail was so uncommon that domestic covers are even more rare than those to France.

April 15th -- Feast day of Sainte Moneta: Moneta (Greek: μονήρης) is a central figure in John Keats' poem The Fall of Hyperion - A Dream (1819).

Fanatics have their dreams, wherewith they weave
A paradise for a sect; the savage too
From forth the loftiest fashion of his sleep
Guesses at Heaven; pity these have not
Trac'd upon vellum or wild Indian leaf
The shadows of melodious utterance.
* * *
Be {this prose a} poet's or fanatic's will be known
When this warm scribe my hand is in the grave.

April 15th is the day in the USA where the government (Federal and most State) requires us to voluntarily report our income from the previous year and to pay any tax due that exceeds the amount mandatorily withheld during the year. Failure so to do will result in fines seizures and jail time. Indeed, changes in the law now permit fines for failure to voluntarily purchase health insurance -- all in the name of love and Moneta.

Le 16 avril 1859: L'écrivain Alexis de Tocqueville s'éteint, à 53 ans. Descendant d'une famille de l'aristocratie normande, il est l'un des principaux penseurs modernes, dans la continuité de Montesquieu ...suite de l'article

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. Alexis deTocqueville

The Bennington Flag was not at the Battle

April 16, 1777: New England's Minutemen and the Green Mountain Boys (Flag to the right) routed British regulars at the Battle of Bennington. The banner at the left goes by the name Bennington Flag. It was probably designed and first flown for the 50th celebration of the Nation in July 1826 or of the battle (1827). Note that the stripe pattern is reversed from that usually seen. More flag history is HERE; it can be a vexing field to study.

This is the Green Mountain Flag 
that probably flew  at the Battle

One Hundred Thousand (100,000) men killed or wounded in France -- April 16, 1917: Today marks the anniversary of an incredible day of bloodshed on the Western Front during the first World War. On this day began the battle of Chemin des Dames, an offensive launched by Robert Nivelle (one strike to end the war in 48 hours). The failure of this manœuvre resulted in mutinies of historic proportions. On Monday (April 16, 2007) there was a march of remembrance from the Village of Craonne to the Plateau de Californie along the River Aisne (between Reims et Soissons, the historic champagne area) and memorial service that included representatives from Grande-Bretagne and the Allemani. The Tuesday night sky saw large search lights used to illuminate the sky, visible for over 10 miles.

April 17, 326: Five months after returning to Alexandria from Nicæa (325AD - site of the First Council bearing that name, in which he played a pivotal role -- a city of ancient Bithynia in Asia Minor, lying on the eastern shore of Lake Ascania (now Isnik, Turkey)), Alexander died. One source places his death on the 22nd of Baramudah, or April 17. As he was dying, he is said by some to have named Athanasius, his deacon, as his successor. Alexander of Alexandria had become the nineteenth Patriarch of Alexandria. During this service from 313 to his death, he dealt with a number of issues. These included the dating of Easter. In 321, Alexander had called a general council of the entire church of the nation of Egypt. The council saw gathered no less than one hundred participants. At this council, Arius continued to argue his earlier position, that the Son could not be co-eternal with the father, and even went on to say that the Son was not similar to the Father in substance. This last statement was received with horror by the assembled council, who placed Arius under anathema (excommunication) until he recanted his positions. The separation of Arius from the one holy and apostolic Church was confirmed at Nicæa, even though Constantine had called for the convocation to end this dispute that threatened the stability of the church and the state. Alexander is venerated as a saint in the Coptic Orthodox Church, the Roman Catholic Church, and the Eastern Orthodox church. His feast day remains the 17th. Alexander is described by the Roman Catholic church as "a man held in the highest honor by the people and clergy, magnificent, liberal, eloquent, just, a lover of God and man, devoted to the poor, good and sweet to all, so mortified that he never broke his fast while the sun was in the heavens." -- God the Father and God the Son were consubstantial and coeternal and that the Arian belief in a Christ created by and thus inferior to the Father was heretical.

Le 17 avril 1521: Martin Luther se rend devant la Diète de Worms pour se justifier de ses accusations portées contre la hiérarchie catholique. Mis au ban de l'Empire, il se cache chez son protecteur, l'Électeur Frédéric de Saxe, dit le Sage. Unless I can be instructed and convinced with evidence from the Holy Scriptures or with open, clear and distinct grounds of reasoning . . . then I cannot and will not recant, because it is neither safe nor wise to act against conscience. Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me! Amen! -- „[Da] … mein Gewissen in den Worten Gottes gefangen ist, ich kann und will nichts widerrufen, weil es gefährlich und unmöglich ist, etwas gegen das Gewissen zu tun. Gott helfe mir. Amen.“ Die oft zitierte Version „Hier stehe ich, ich kann nicht anders, Gott helfe mir, Amen“, ist nicht belegt -- schade

Le 17 avril -- Bienheureuse Kateri Tekakwhita: Kateri Tekakwhita (1656 - 1680) est née à Ossernenon, sur le bord de la rivière Mohawk, aujourd'hui dans l'État de New York (prês Auriesville). Tekakwhita en langue iroquoise: Celle qui avance en hésitant. Elle est la première amérindienne d'Amérique du Nord à avoir été béatifiée. L'Église du Canada le fête le 17 avril. En préparation du prochain Congès eucharistique international qui aura lieu au Québec en juin (du 15 au 22), vous propose de la découvrir à travers une présentation du Cardinal Turcotte, archevêque de Montréal. Pronounced GAH-day-lee Day-GAH-kwee-dah and often spelled Tekakwitha in English language reference materials. In 1666, the Marquis Alexandre De Prouville de Tracy burned down Ossernenon. Kateri's clan then settled on the north side of the Mohawk River, near what is now Fonda, New York. While living there, at the age of 20 years old, Tekakwitha converted and received baptism on Easter Sunday, April 18, 1676 (Father Jacques de Lamberville, a Jesuit). She took the name Kateri, a Mohawk pronunciation of "Catherine" and was forced to flee her tribe to an established community of Native American Christians located in Kahnawake, Canada. Kateri died at the age of 24 on April 17th. Situé dans le parc d'Oka, le Calvaire d'Oka figure parmi les plus anciens sentiers de randonnée pédestre au Québec. Also dying this day in 1790, Benjamin Franklin an American inventor, diplomat, printer and patriot (b. 1706).

April 17th: About 2 a.m. on the morning of April 17, 1783, British Captain James Colbert, along with a group of 82 British partisans, launches a surprise attack on the Arkansas post of Fort Carlos (modern-day Gillett, in Desha County), located on the banks of the Arkansas River. The “Colbert Raid” was the only Revolutionary War action to take place in Arkansas. {page never fully loads}

Colbert launched the British attack on the Spanish-controlled fort in response to Spain’s decision to side with the Americans during the revolution. Forty Spanish soldiers defended the fort with help from their Quapaw Indian allies. After a six-hour battle, Spanish Commander Jacobo Du Breuil ordered a sortie, which forced the retreat of the British contingent.

The raid took place nearly two months after America’s preliminary peace treaty was signed with Great Britain, but word of the peace treaty did not reach either the British or American troops located in the Mississippi Valley until well after the raid. The area did not become part of the United States until 1803; in 1800, the Spanish ceded it to France and the French in turn sold it to Thomas Jefferson as part of Louisiana Purchase three years later.

In order to celebrate the occasion, Ford launches its production model of the Mustang, this on April 17, 1964, at the New York World's Fair. The Ford Mustang, a two-seat, mid-engine sports car, is officially unveiled by Henry Ford II at the World’s Fair in Flushing Meadows. That same day, the new car also debuted in Ford showrooms across America. Almost 22,000 Mustangs were immediately snapped up by buyers, except a bluish white-top convertible that managed to escape from a showroom, with its buyer, the day before. Over the course of 51 years, the Mustang underwent numerous changes, and remains in production today, with more than 9 million units sold.

April 18, 310: Saint Eusebius became Pope. His reign was short. His firm defense of ecclesiastical discipline and the banishment, which he suffered therefor, caused him to be venerated as a martyr. In his epitaph Pope Damasus honours Eusebius with this title. His feast normally is celebrated on the 26th of September.

This was not Eusebius Pamphili, Bishop of Cæsarea (in Palestine), who wrote what is still considered to be one of the most important histories of the early Church, relying on many different sources. In truth he was a compiler and preserver of writings handed down -- he assured that something survived. See also

LongfellowApril 18, 1775: At about 10pm this night, three men took to their horses for a late-evening gallop from Boston to Concord, MA. They rode to warn the citizens of an approaching British force. The famous poem, "Paul Revere's Ride" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, glorified this Bostonian as a lone rider (poetic license not liberal bias). Revere was, in fact, accompanied by William Dawes and Samuel Prescott. Only Prescott arrived in Concord. Revere was nabbed by a British cavalry patrol near Lexington (Dawes and Prescott escaped this close encounter of the third kind). Revere, released without his horse, went to Lexington. When British forces arrived in Lexington and later Concord (on the 19th), they found the Minutemen {armed militia} waiting for them. Prescott jumped his horse over a wall and escaped into the woods; Dawes also escaped, although soon thereafter he fell off his horse and did not complete the ride to Concord. Actually Dawes and Revere rode first to Lexington to warn Samuel Adams and John Hancock. Dr. Samuel Prescott joined them for the jaunt to Concord. So, 238 years later, almost to the moment, events started to unfold again in the Boston area.
Post-mortum -- April 18, 2005: Lost among the shuffle of electing a new Pope was the death of a saint -- Diane Knippers -- at age 53 of cancer. She made the Times (N.Y.) and Post (D.C.) because she was a conservative member of the main-line Episcopal Church, who swam upstream against currents of untraditional faith (much-quoted defender of Christian orthodoxy, so said the Post). She began her career at Good News magazine, the publication of a Methodist group at the College of Wilmore where she graduated. She joined the Institute on Religion and Democracy in 1982 while still a Methodist. She later switched to the Episcopal Church. She was a long-time participant in the Renewal Movement within that denomination. She was a board member of the National Association of Evangelicals and the American Anglican Council. See also -- index.php?p=6124

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be made visible in our bodies. For while we live, we are always being given up to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus may be made visible in our mortal flesh.


But just as we have the same spirit of faith that is in accordance with Scripture — I believed, and so I spoke — we also believe, and so we speak  2 Cor. 4:8-11,13 (New Revised Standard)

On April 18, 2008, the United States Postal Service issued a new set of four definitive stamps, featuring paintings of an American Flag flying at different times of the day. Only one thing wrong with this picture, the evening stamp shows a flag with 14 stripes. More HERE. Want to know more about our Flag ? -- Please feel free to visit our Flag Day page.

April 19th: On this date in 1775, a Minuteman, Captain John Parker, ordered his volunteer militia, armed with personal weapons, not to fire, not to go to war, unless fired upon by British troops, sent out to gather arms and ammunition that might be used against them. Last night at about 10:20pm the chase had begun. During the day, at the Lexington Common, the shot "heard round the world" was fired, fired first by the British. On this day the Revolution began.

Seven years elapse and in 1782, John Adams finally secures the Dutch Republic's recognition of the United States as a sovereign and independent government. The home he had purchased in The Hague, Netherlands became first American embassy. The Dutch, in reward for their support, on this date in 1839, discovered that Belgium had been carved out of the Netherlands; and, Luxembourg had become an independent Duchy, although half of its historic province stayed with newly formed nation. The neutral Dutch nation on this date declared in 1940 declared itself under siege by the Nazi regime. The Baltimore riot of 1861 took place this day when a pro-Secession crowd in Baltimore, Maryland, attacks United States Army troops marching through the city, in order to keep Maryland in the Union. The civilian deaths this day were the first in the war that followed, 4 soldiers died.

Strangely enough, the first "Boston Marathon" was run on this date way back in 1897, won by John McDermott. The ground shook in San Francisco in 1906; Joan of Arc was recognized officially as the patron Sainte of France (1909). That great Unionist, President Herbert Hoover (1932), first proposes a 5-day work week, while the former Governator of New York announces that the USA would no longer back its fiduciary obligations with Gold (1933). This and confiscation of gold that followed were done under a declaration of emergency that is still on the books (Senate Report 93-549 states: "That since March 09, 1933 the United States has been in a state of declared national emergency." Proclamation No. 2039 declared by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on March 9, 1933. This declared national emergency has never been revoked and has been codified into the US Code (12 U.S.C. §95a and b)). I have a pen, not I have a dream A year later the late Shirley Temple appears in her first flick "Stand up and Cheer."

One cannot make this stuff up: a French flag vessel explodes in a Texas City berth (1947), officially killing 552 persons. Forty-two years later another explosion on the US Iowa kills many servicemen; while in 1995, a truck bomb goes off in Oklahoma City, to mark the second anniversary of the end of the siege near Waco Texas, April 19, 1993 (town of Elk). A Federal government investigation concluded in 2000 that sect members, had started the fire at the time of the final assault.

In 1999, the German Bundestag returns to Berlin. Just six years later the 265th Pope, who chose the name Benedict (XVI). Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger was selected on the second day of the Papal conclave. In 2013, explosions/gunfire at 8:35am (EDT), teen terrorist #2 being taken down at Willow Street in Watertown Mass. ??? Boston on lock-down again.

April 19, 1529: Since Luther’s posting of his 95 Theses and the Creed enunciated by the Diet of Worms, the reformation movements and related uprisings of peasants and other folk had become the dominating issues of domestic politics. With this background the Imperial Diet of 1526 convened for the first time in Speyer. The ambiguous resolution of the Diet that each estate should behave as it saw fit before God and the Emperor, favored the expansion of Luther's doctrines. On April 19, 1529 (Second Diet of Speyer), a majority of the delegates decided to rescind the Imperial resolution of the last Diet in 1526 and to reconfirm the Edict of Worms, passed by the Diet of Worms in 1521, imposing the Imperial ban on Luther and his followers. This resolution outraged the participating evangelical princes and Imperial towns. On April 20, they drew up a letter of protest which was rejected by the Diet but then delivered to Emperor Charles V. This Protestation at Speyer sealed another great schism of the Christian church. It is considered the birth of Protestantism. From this time on the adherents of the Reformation were called Protestants. Large-scale European wars followed.

April 19, 1778:  During the American Revolution four heavily-armed row galleys were constructed in Savannah for the Georgia Navy, all underwritten by the Continental Congress. In nearby Frederica River, beginning at dawn on April 19, 1778, Georgia galleys Lee, Washington and Bulloch, the armada commanded by Colonel Samuel Elbert, attacked HM Brigantine Hinchinbrook, the armed Sloop Rebecca and an armed watering brig. The British were out-gunned and out-maneuvered. As they tried to gain an advantage by moving down river their ships grounded, were abandoned and captured. This remarkable victory boosted patriot morale and delayed by eight months the inevitable British invasion of Georgia.
April 19, 1924: A new program joined the still novel radio airwaves. The Chicago Barn Dance aired on WLS. Later, the soon-famous production would be renamed -- The National Barn Dance -- as WLS, then a clear channel station, could be heard in most of the USA and Canada. This program became the first country music jamboree on the air. The Barn Dance continued for many years on this station, which was owned by retailer, Sears Roebuck & Co. The call sign WLS, in fact, meant World's Largest Store. In time, station programming gave way to rock 'n' roll and later, passed on to the talk radio format. The Grand Ole Opry aired on WSM Radio in Nashville, Tennessee first in 1925. The Opry extravaganza continues to this day, each weekend in Nashville, on its parent station from its new location at Opryland. Nobody eats at Linebaugh's anymore ... or so said John Hartford about 40 years ago about the moving event.

Now the Opry's gone and the streets are bare.
Ernest Tubb's record shop is dark.
And the drunks are gone from the Merchant’s Hotel.
Everybody’s gone to the [Opryland] park. More of the lyric's here

With the start of the Grand Ol’ Opry across the street at the Ryman in 1925, some notable folks started staying at the hotel: Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, Porter Waggoner, Little Jimmy Dickens, and Roy Acuff. Other notables included Will Rogers, Wild Bill Hickock and the James Boys (they shot someone on Broadway). As the years went by the quality of the hotel began to decline.

April 20, 1861 -- Great Moments of Untimely History: Scarcely a week had passed since the War Between the States had begun with the firing upon Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor. Thaddeus Lowe chose this day to arrive in South Carolina, only to be surrounded by a group of incredulous South Carolinians. You see, Mr. Lowe was a wizard of the air and had arrived in Oz, but unlike the women and men of the Emerald City, these citizens thought Lowe was a spy. He managed to persuade the admiring crowd that this ending to a 500-mile hot-air trip from Cincinnati, Ohio (aka not-Kansas), was merely an innocent finish to an ærial œdessy, which had sorely stressed his strange ship.

One of the qualities that made Abraham Lincoln an effective wartime president was his curiosity about new weapons and inventions that might give the North an advantage. One of those inventions was the hot air balloon. As soon as the war began Lincoln searched for a commander of the new balloon corps he planned for the Union Army. Thaddeus Lowe was named chief æronaut of the Union Army Balloon Corps in July 1861.

For the North, balloons played a role, both officially and unofficially, from the First Battle of Bull Run to the war's end. Initially, Lowe used his personal balloon, the Enterprise, for training purposes and at the first battle of the war. By October of 1861, however, his first war craft became operational, the Eagle.

Interestingly, on Aug. 17, 1859, John Wise had attempted the nation’s first airmail delivery, intending to carry 123 letters in his balloon, Jupiter, from Lafayette, Ind., to either New York City or Philadelphia. He failed to find a cooperative wind and landed 30 miles away near Crawfordsville, Ind., 5 hours later.

The mailbag was then placed on a train. Mr. Wise also flew for the Union during the war.

April 20, 1898: President McKinley signed a congressional resolution recognizing Cuba's independence from a sovereign Spain. He also signed the Joint Resolution for War with Spain. It authorized U.S. military intervention to aid Cuban independence. Remember the Maine !

The U.S. North Atlantic Fleet, under the command of Rear Admiral William T. Sampson, was ordered to begin the blockade of Cuba on the 21st. The fleet with the armored cruiser New York steamed out of Key West, Florida, at 6:30 a.m. the next morning on April 22, 1898. The fleet had hardly left port when it pursued and the USS Nashville captured a Spanish merchant vessel, Buenaventura, which did not have such a good journey that day. Congress also on this date authorized the creation of the First U.S. Volunteer Cavalry, popularly known as the Rough Riders, and with which one of its leaders would ride into the White House.

Sometime after the short war had ended, McKinley went on down to Buffalo town. But he didn't stay too long -- "hard times, hard times, hard times" [John Renbourn, White House Blues].

April 20, 1942 -- Not so Great Moments in French History: Pierre Laval, the premier of Vichy France, in a radio broadcast, established a policy of true reconciliation with Germany, ignoring the fact that la terreur had begun again. Three years later, on April 20, 1945, Allied Forces (the U.S. 7th army) took control of the German cities of Nuremberg and Stuttgart. Other Americans liberated Buchenwald, where 350 Americans were imprisoned at Berga (a sub-camp within Buchenwald) following their capture during the Battle of the Bulge (December 1944). The horror of their treatment, which was real, paled in comparison to that reported of others who died in Buchenwald and other German death camps. Oh, one other fact, a coincidence, perhaps, Dictator Adolf Hitler, of the National Socialist Party was born in Braunau, Austria on April 20th (1889).
April 21, 753BC: Rome was founded. This traditional date for the founding, saw Romulus establish a refuge for runaway slaves and murderers. They in turn kidnapped neighboring Sabine women for wives. Archæological evidence simply indicates that the founders of Rome were Italic people who occupied the area south of the Tiber River in the 8th Century BC. They were Émigrés from Greece or perhaps Troy or celts or phœnicians or an outgrowth from the Etruscan culture or native tribes from a much earlier period -- in reality, probably a mixture of all these peoples.

April 21, 1732: King George the Second signs the Charter for the Georgia Colony. Because of the need for additional tweaking of the contractual arrangement, Parliament would not approve it for another few months (GO HERE to learn about some of the technical problems that Lord Percival saw with the Charter). Within the year the Colony would be in place.

On this day in 1899 (coincidence ??), a large granite boulder replete with a plaque honoring Chief Tomochichi was dedicated in Savannah. After the Chief's death, Oglethorpe had directed that his good friend be buried in Percival Square in Savannah. The large granite stone and brass plaque dedicated in 1899 marks Tomichichi's gravesite on southwest side of Wright Square (formerly Percival Square). It had been requested by the Colonial Dames and furnished from Stone Mountain outside Atlanta. The inscription reads: In memory of Tomo-chi-chi, The Mico of the Yamacraws, The companion of Oglethorpe, And the Friend and Ally of the Colony of Georgia. The Georgia Society of the Colonial Dames of America was organized in Savannah on April 25, 1893. For those of you in Savannah, the stone with a plaque is directly across from the Wachovia Bank Wells Fargo. The Plaque in close view can be found here.

The Corporate Georgia Charter barely lasted 20 years. On April 23, 1752, in London, Georgia's Trustees made the last grant of land, paid final bills, signed a deed surrendering Georgia to the Crown and defaced the seal -- thus ending Georgia's status as a trustee-governed colony. Georgia would now function as a royal colony operated by the British government.

Le 21 avril 1836: À San Jacinto, les volontaires texans de Sam Houston battent l'armée mexicaine de Santa Anna. Ils ont pu se préparer à la bataille grâce à la résistance désespérée de Fort Alamo. Le Texas devient pour quelques années un pays indépendant avant de se rattacher aux États-Unis.   Remember Goliad; Remember the Alamo !!! In just a few months the Texican's hopes had gone from desperation to jubilation. General Santa Anna, President of Mexico, lost the battle of San Jacinto. Silently and tensely, the men bending low, the Texas battle line swept across the prairie and swale that was No Man's Land. A soldier's fife piped up with Will You Come to the Bower, a popular celtic tune of the day. That was the only music of the battle.

Will you come to the bower o'er the free boundless ocean,
Where stupendous waves roll in thundering motion,
Where the mermaids are seen and the wild tempest gather,
To loved Erin the green, the dear land of our fathers
Texas Navy Flag Will you come and awake our lost land from its slumber
And her fetters we'll break, links that long are encumbered.
And the air will resound with hosannahs to greet you
On the shore will be found gallant Irishmen to greet you.

Mirabeau Lamar led a cavalry charge through enemy lines for the decisive victory. Born in Georgia, Lamar immigrated to Texas in 1835, joining the fight for independence. After the conflict, Lamar became attorney general, secretary of war, vice-president and, finally, president of the Republic of Texas in 1838. Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar (1798-1859), son of John and Rebecca (Lamar), was born near Louisville, Georgia, on August 16, 1798. He grew up at Fairfield, his father's plantation near Milledgeville. Among his accomplishments was the decision to make Austin the Texas capital city. He is also known as the Father of Texas Education: “A cultivated mind is the guardian genius of democracy” -- or as they say at UT, Disciplina Præsidium Civitatis Lamar County and the town of Lamar in Aransas County were named for him. In 1936 the Texas Centennial Commission placed statues of him in the Hall of State in Dallas and in the cemetery at Richmond. The commission also marked the site of his home near Richmond and the place of his residence as president in Austin, and built a miniature replica of his home on the square at Paris. Remember Goliad; Remember the Alamo !!

The battlefield is east of today's Houston. San Jancinto, Texas is in a different location, just south of Lake Livingston and East of Huntsville.

The San Jacinto Monument, which stands 15 feet taller than the Washington Monument, was completed in 1939. Actually out of respect, the actual obelisk portion of the monument is shorter than Wahington's; however, when put on its base it stands higher -- indeed the tallest in the world. The San Jacinto Museum of History is housed in the base of the monument. The San Jacinto Monument and Museum remains open seven days a week, from 9 a.m. to 6 in the evening.

Remember Goliad; Remember the Alamo !!

Directions Link

Alexandra Elene MacLean Denny (6 January 1947 – 21 April 1978): Fotheringay was a short-lived British folk rock group, formed in 1970 by singer Sandy Denny upon her departure from the Fairport Convention -- Fotheringhay Castle (also Fotheringay Castle) was the final place of imprisonment of Mary, Queen of Scots (Marie Stewart / Stuart), who was tried and executed within the castle's great room in 1587, under the orders of her cousin Elizabeth I, who had imprisoned her 18 years earlier. Mary was born on December 8, 1542, in Linlithgow Palace, West Lothian, Scotland. She was the daughter of King James V of Scotland and his second wife, Mary of Guise. Her father died when Mary was only 6 days old, making her the Queen of Scotland. Upon Mary's death, her son James became King of Scots and later of England.

April 22, 1507 -- Great Moments in English History: This day Henry Tudor took the crown and name King Henry VIII of England following, the death of his father, Henry VII. He married Catherine of Aragon, his brother's widow and the aunt of Charles V (the Holy Roman Emperor). Their daughter Mary, would become the Queen of England (Phillip of Spain, her husband). Remember, we are slightly more than a dozen years after 1492, when Columbus sailed the ocean blue.

To paraphrase a famous announcer, however, there is more to this story. Great destruction to the universal Church in England occured on his watch. While one can effectively claim that this Tudor ruler was no saint, reformation with both a small "r" and big “R” did occur during his reign and that of his children (Elizabeth was his second daughter). Reformation changed forever the western World, not to mention England. Henry was no steward of the Kingdom. He was its defender and protector, flawed as he may have been.

Elizabeth would follow "bloody" Mary, although Elizabeth's executions and forfeitures might be actually greater in scope. She would execute Mary, Queen of Scots, her cousin and a claimant to the throne after 18 years in custody and the failure of the Babington Plot, hatched by Phillip II of Spain. -- However, Mary's son James would become King of England, as well as Scotland, and he would elevate her memory and memorial to a prime place in Westminster Abbey. A complicated and sad story -- a chart showing her kinship to Elizabeth, current sovereign of the realm:,_Queen_of_Scots see also,_Queen_of_Scots (Mary/James to George I).

April 22nd (1980) also marks the passing of chemist, Fritz Strassmann in Mainz, Germany. With his partners Otto Hahn and Lise Meitner he discovered nuclear fission in 1938. Their discovery set the Allies into a frantic project to apply the technology to a bomb, fearing that Germany was very close to such an achievement. After the war, Strassmann became a professor of inorganic and nuclear chemistry at the University of Mainz, an ancient city, in the new American Zone of Occupation along the Rhine. The beast of a Nazi Bomb had been slain before it hatched, probably by Hitler himself, who knew that he would have won or lost the war in Europe with conventional weapons, long before nuclear deployment would be practical against the USA.
April 23rd -- Of dragons and such: Saint George is the patron saint of England. His emblem, a red cross on a white background, is the flag of England and part of the Union Jack, today. It was adopted by Richard I, the Lion Heart (Cœur de Lion (1189-99 AD)). He brought it to England at the end of 12th century. The king's soldiers wore it on their tunics to avoid confusion in battle. You perhaps know Richard best for his theatrical appearances in various renditions of Robin Hood, where he arrives to save the day and vindicate the legendary men of Nottinghamshire. see also

Flag of the sovereign Nation of GeorgiaSaint George replaced Edward the Confessor as the national patron saint. St. George's Day is celebrated on April 23rd, so, in a sense, this is England's national holiday. However, unlike other countries, England does not today have a formal national celebration to mark this occasion (although in 1415 it technically adopted this as a national day). St. George's Day, however, is recognized in many locales by parades and other festivities. It is also a feast day in the English Church (Anglican Communion). see generally In addition, Saint George is a tradition in many nations -- see e.g.

The similarity between St. George and the country's name is just a coincidence. Modern scholars believe that toponym "Georgia" derives from absolutely different root. Native Georgians call their country Sakartvelo. Etymology[edit]. From Old Georgian საქართველო (sakartvelo), equivalent to სა- ( sa-) + ქართველი (kartveli, “Georgian”) + -ო (-o), and literally means “a place where Georgians dwell”. The earliest reference to the word occurs in the ninth- century text The Georgian Chronicles. Actually, Georgia is a foreign name for the country.

Saint George's slaying of the dragon is perhaps an allegorical allusion to his stand for his Christian faith against Diocletian's persecutions; however, unlike the outcome of the dragon's tale, St. George was beheaded (303-5 ?) and the beast, pagan Rome, remained alive for a little while longer. St. George is considered the patron Saint of those martyred during the crusades to Palestine.

As might be expected, there are other Saints named George. Indeed, there are other Saint Georges from England. The two that come to immediate mind are George Swallowel who was martyred at Durham in 1594 (his remembrance day is July 24th) and George Napper, martyred at Oxford in 1610 (his remembrance day is November 9th). Can you think of more ???

April 23, 1564: William Shakespeare, English poet and playwright of the Elizabethan and early Jacobin periods, was born. He died on the same date 52 years later. In between, he added more than 1,700 words to the English language; yet, this son of an illiterate glove maker left school at age 12. Be not afraid of greatness: some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them. -- from Act II, Scene 5 of the Twelfth Night.

William Shakespeare died in Stratford-on-Avon, England on April 23, 1616. This is the same day that Miguel de Cervantes (b.1547), Spanish poet and novelist, died in Madrid. Cervantes is to the Spanish language (Castille et en Andalousie) as Shakespeare was to his own native tongue -- there are no other peers. See Shakespeare et Cervantès au paradis des poètes A more modern poetic celtic tragedy of éire follows next.
Le dimanche de Pâques du 23-24 avril 1916: Les Irlandais se soulèvent contre le colonisateur britannique. Les «Pâques sanglantes» de Dublin annoncent l'indépendance de l'Eire, cinq ans plus tard. --

William Butler Yeats (June 13th, 1865 - January 28th, 1939):

Easter 1916

Too long a sacrifice
Can make a stone of the heart.
O when may it suffice?
That is Heaven's part, our part
To murmur name upon name ...
I wrote it out in a verse --
MacDonagh and MacBride
And Connolly and Pearse

Slow to Load
Now and in time to be
Wherever green is worn
Are changed, changed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born.

More Lyric about the Easter Irish Insurrection

Take away the blood-stained bandage from off an Irish brow
We fought and bled for Ireland and will not shirk it now
We have held in her struggle, in answer to her call
And because we sought to free her we are placed against a wall

April 24, 1184 BC: This is the last day of the siege where-upon combined Greek City-State forces (coalition of the willing) sacked Troy, after inventing and employing the first Trojan Horse, using it to bypass programmed defenses and gain access to a secure area. This would set off a series of counter-measures, arguably ending with the Viking raids on France and England.

Virgil describes a detonating meteor in such terms that I feel reasonably sure that either he had seen and heard, or else he had had direct conversations with others who had seen and heard, a splendid example of these meteors. The passage is in the second book of the Æneid. The city of Troy was captured and was burning. All was in confusion. The family of Æneas was gathered ready for flight, but Anchises would not go. An omen, lambent flames on the head of his grandson, began on to shake his purpose to perish with his country. He prayed for more positive guidance. It is Æneas who describes the scene "Hardly had the old man spoken when across the darkness a star ran down from the sky carrying a brilliant light torch We saw it go sweeping along above the roof of the house. It lighted up the streets, and disappeared in the woods on Mount Ida. A long train, a line of light, remained across the sky, and all around the place was a sulphurous smell. A heavy sound of thunder came from the left. Overcome now, father raised his hands to heaven, addressed the gods and worshipped the sacred star. Now, now, he cried, no longer delay." This story is, of course, all legendary, but Virgil's description of the scene is true to life as conceived by pagan Rome in his day.

So, it is only natural, one would suppose, that on the same day exactly 2250 years later (in 1066), Halley's comet was seen and thought to be an omen portending real change. Indeed, later in October of that year, Harold II of England died at the Battle of Hastings against Norseman (Normans) from France. England had a new sovereign. The comet is shown on the famous Bayeux Tapestry. The accounts, which have been preserved, indicate it as having appeared to be four times the size of Venus and to have shone with a light a fourth of that of the Moon.

There is evidence that some of the Norse predecessors were migratory Thracians (a name given them by the Greeks), an aggressive refugee boat-people, whose ancestors came from the ancient city of Troy. The famous Trojan War was fought between the Greeks and Trojans with their allies. Troy eventually was devastated from 10 years of fighting. The Greeks sacked the city, historically referred to as the Fall of Troy.

Thousands left Troy immediately after its Fall. Others remained for about 30 to 50 years. Then an estimated 30,000 Trojans/Thracians suddenly abandoned what was left of Troy. The city would lay vacant for nearly 500 years (to about 700 BC). Homer (a Greek writer/poet of the eighth century BC) and various sources (Etruscan, Roman, Merovingian and later Scandinavian) tend to confirm the departure. Most from Troy crossed the Mediterranean Sea into Italy, possibly becoming the dominating influence in the development of Rome.

Thor of Asgard

A minority of Trojans, mainly said to be chieftains and warriors, about 12,000 in all, moved north to navigate the Black Sea. They went into the Mare Mœtis or shallow sea, where the Don River ends (today in the Caucasus region of southern Russia). These émigrés established a kingdom about in 1150 BC.The Romans would later refer to the inhabitants as Sicambrians. The locals (nomadic Scythians) named the Trojan conquerors the Iron people, or the Æsir. They built the famous fortified city Æsgard or Asgard, described as Troy in the north. Various other sources collaborate this tradition, stating that the Trojans landed on the eastern shores with their superior weaponry, and claimed land.

Some historians suggest that Odin, who was later worshipped among the pagan pantheon by the Vikings, was actually a Thracian / Æsir leader who reigned in Sicambria from the city of Æsgard in the first century BC. Odin, indeed appears to be a Thracian ruler, who led a migration in about 70 BC with thousands of followers from the Black Sea region to Scandinavia. By the Viking era (800 years later), Odin and the Æsir had become gods, and Asgard/Troy was the home of the gods (such as Thor) -- the foundation for a Viking tradition. (link is no longer open-access)

It is well-argued that King Henry II, of England, and his progeny descend in some portion from these migrating peoples from Troy; and again, records dating back over a 1000 years show how King Priam of Troy, descends from Abraham and, of course Adam. Through Henry II's mother, Queen Maude, the King also can claim the ancient Royal Scots of Dalriada and related Irish line of Kings. The current royal family also directly descends from the Scots of Dalriada, through this line, by way of the House of York (White Rose), Mary, Queen of Scots, James I, Elizabeth, Queen of Bohemia, the Duke of Brunswick (Hanover) and his son George I, King of England. Go HERE for more information about this lineage.

And of Troyes in France: There is also a line of thought which says that some of the Sicambrians (called Franks) also migrated to an area west of the River Danube and settled in Germaniæ (named by the Romans after the Scythian phrase meaning genuine ones), near today's Köln along the River Rhine. It was from the time of King Meroveus, who was named Guardian of the Franks, that this line became known as the Merovingians. These in turn became the first truly French rulers. Indeed, one of the founders of the Frankish French Kings, clearly claimed to be a descendant of ancestors who once resided in ancient Troy. In any event, the French city of Troyes, was named by the Franks -- after a former abode -- Troy ?? Did the Romans title the City of Paris (Lutetia Parisiorum) for the Parisii people named after Prince Paris, the son of King Priam of Troy, based upon their knowledge of history ? More about Troyes in France is HERE.

April 24th: Today is the feast Day of St. Marianus von Regensburg. Marianus Scotus (? - 1083) was born in Ireland (his Gælic name was Muiredach). He left his home on a Pilgrimage to Rome but only got as far as Germany (Ratisbon). He became a Benedictine monk in Bamberg. He then moved to Regensburg where he founded the Monastery of St. Peter and became its Abbot. Others from Regensburg can be found here.

April 25th: Eusèbe de Césarée rapporte que Saint Marc l'évangéliste (Fête: 25 avril) aurait été le fondateur de l'Eglise d'Alexandrie (Egypte). SaintPierre établit aussi les églises d'Egypte, avec celle d'Alexandrie, non pas en personne, mais par Marc, son disciple. Car lui-même pendant ce temps s'occupait de l'Italie et des nations environnantes; il envoya donc Marc, son disciple, destiné à devenir le docteur et le conquérant de l'Egypte (Histoire ecclésiastique Livre II, chapitre XVI), ce qu'un texte arménien fixe à la première année du règne de Claude (41) et saint Jérôme la troisième (43); Eusèbe dit qu'il établit son successeur, Anien, la huitième année du règne de Néron (62). (Cæsarea in Palestine) --

Saint Mark established the Church at Alexandria Egypt in 41 or 43AD, he is the patron saint of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Egypt, headquartered there. The great Saint and Martyr preached in Egypt, Libya, Cyprus, some areas in Asia and Rome. He is well-honored by Venice in its great structure. This painting by Bellini (1429-1507), shows the Coptic building as it looked in the middle ages; however, we can also see St. Mark preaching before the church. So it really is a fantastic painting, full of color and detail. I particularly like the mountains behind a town built on the Delta of the Nile -- would not look right for Venice either.

The Gospel according to Saint Mark (τὸ κατὰ Μᾶρκον εὐαγγέλιον) was probably not written by him, but perhaps based on his "notes" or an oral tradition coming directly from him. The most concise (and perhaps earliest) narrative, the Gospel of Mark appears directed to a non-Jewish audience. The text uses a Greek version (written in Egypt) of the Hebrew Bible for most of the references to the Old Testament. Some words are clearly Latin in nature (not aramaic or Greek).

In addition, the earliest Codex of original ends Chapter 16 at verse 8, thereby containing no description of the post-resurrection appearances as found today. Indeed, Mark is the only canonical gospel with significant and various alternative endings; however, most of the contents of the traditionally accepted verses (the "Longer Ending" (Mark 16:9–20)) in general terms are found in other New Testament texts. So these points, even if added later, would not be unique to Mark. The one significant exception is 16:18b "and if they drink any deadly thing" it will not harm those who believe, which is a concept found only in the longer ending of Mark.

The French National Anthem 
is created 
by Rouget de I'Isle Seventeen-Hundred Fifty Years Later -- the 25th of April: En 1792, à la suite de la déclaration de guerre du Roi à l'Autriche, un officier français en poste à Strasbourg, Rouget de Lisle compose, dans la nuit du 25 au 26 avril, chez Dietrich, le maire de la ville, le Chant de guerre pour l'armée du Rhin.

Ce chant est repris par les fédérés de Marseille participant à l'insurrection des Tuileries le 10 août 1792. Son succès est tel qu'il est déclaré chant national le 14 juillet 1795. Don't become confused; Marchons, marchons -- Qu'un sang impur does not mean "March on, march on, all hearts resolved". It is more of a vivid farming image [Entendez-vous dans nos campagnes]. That being the case, I would invite you to take a few minutes to ponder the Declaration of July 4th. What is the difference; a few years and a few thousand miles ?

The gothic Cathedral at Strasbourg, France (Straßburg Frankreich) dominates the old city centre along the River Rhein. Indeed, it was the world's tallest building from 1625 to 1847 ( In this city, at the villa of the Mayor, Captain Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle, an officer of Republican France, wrote this song of war during the night of April 25-26. Later the composition became known as La Marseillaise, the national anthem of France.

April 26, 1607: Ships under the command of Captain Christopher Newport sought shelter in Chesapeake Bay. The forced landing led to the founding of Jamestowne on the James River, the first successful English settlement on the North American continent. An expedition of English colonists, including Capt. John Smith, went ashore at Cape Henry, Virginia, to establish the first permanent English settlement in the Western Hemisphere. The first Anglican worship service was held three days later. Once thought lost by tidal creek shifts, the real Jamestowne lives again through archæological studies. Captain Newport would return several times, including the voyage that resulted in a shipwreck on Somers Island.
The Eagle has landed; another first for France -- April 26, 1803: Over 2,300 meteorite stones, weighing between one quarter ounce and 20 pounds, fell upon the people of l'Aigle, a village in Normandie, France. The meteorites rained down along an 8-mile-long strip of land near this town, 100 miles west of Paris. No one was hurt. It was the first time scientists could verify that stones could come from outer space,, but meteorites have been sought after and perhaps worshipped for centuries (such as at Mecca). Another rock with a bit of history behind it is the stone which is in the base of the royal throne of England, which comes from the Scots and was said to be that stone upon which Jacob placed his head in the desert, when he had his vision. Many would argue that the Stone of Scone is made from the same type of material from its Scottish homeland, not Palestine; but then maybe, just perhaps, the English who took the "stone" stole an impostor. The original may yet be hid.

The worship of an unwrought stone once established has wonderful vitality. For example, the Greek writers speak of such a worship in their day among the Arabian tribes. When Mohammed, with his intense iconoclasm, came down upon Mecca and took the sacred city, he either for reasons of policy, or from feeling, spared the ancient worship of this black stone. Entering into the sacred enclosure, he approached and saluted it with his staff (where it was built into the corner of the Kaaba), made the sevenfold circuit of the temple court, returned and kissed the stone, and then entered the building and destroyed the 360 idols within it. To-day that stone is the most sacred jewel of Islam. Towards it each devout Moslem is bidden to look five times a day as he prays. It is called the Right Hand of God on Earth. It is reputed to have been a stone of Paradise, to have dropped from heaven together with Adam. Or, again, it was given by Gabriel to Abraham to attest his divinity.

before the fire April 27, 1749: Today marks the first performance of Händel's music for fireworks at Green Park, London. Under contract from King George II (Great Britain), Georg Fredick Händel composed the festival work, in order to celebrate the signing of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, which treaty brought to a close the War of the Austrian Succession. Both the British monarch and treaty were unpopular with the English public, but Händel's music, as always, proved to be an instant success. Händel originally wrote his "Music for the Royal Fireworks" for wind instruments, but it quickly was adapted into a full orchestral arrangement. The first performance of the piece was said to be unrehearsed, well at least the incendiary coordination was not well planned. During the celebration, Giovanni Servandoni's Grand Pavilion caught fire and burned to the ground. In a fit of anger, Servandoni drew his sword on Charles Frederick, ("Comptroller of his Majesty's Fireworks, as well as for War as for Triumph"), was then disarmed, thereafter spending quiet time for the entire night in a prison conveniently located at Green Park.

Twenty-four years later, the British Parliament passed the infamous Tea Act, designed to prop-up the British East India Company, by granting it a monopoly over the North American tea trade, and to raise revenues to pay for the defense of the Colonies against the French in the most recent encounter. It was an unpopular move, that eventually led to the first Barbary War, when the US was forced to defend itself on the Seas, instead of relying on the British presence (and bribe money). On this date in 1805, United States Marines engaged the Tripolitan city of Derne (the reference to the shores of Tripoli in the Marines' Hymn). Interestingly in 1810, Beethoven composed his famous piano piece, Für Elise on April 27th; and three years later on the same date, United States troops capture and burn York, the capital of Ontario (present day Toronto, Canada). Not to be outdone, the President of the United States Abraham Lincoln suspends the writ of habeas corpus in 1861.

April 27, 1861: At the outset of the War Between the States, Richard B. Russell, Sr. was born near Marietta, GA. He attended the University of Georgia, obtaining an undergraduate degree in 1879 and a law degree in 1880. Russell began the practice of law in Athens. In 1882 was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives. Russell was committed to education, serving on the local boards of education in Athens, Winterville and in the village (and later town) of Russell. During his six years in the General Assembly, Russell supported creation of the Georgia Institute of Technology (then the Georgia School of Technology or Georgia Tech) and the Georgia Normal and Industrial College for Women at Milledgeville (now Georgia College and State University). He served on the governing boards of the University of Georgia and the new college for women at Milledgeville. He also served on the first Board of Regents for the new University System of Georgia (1932-33). However, Russell is probably best remembered for his judicial career. He served as both prosecuting attorney and later judge of the western superior court circuit, judge on the Georgia Court of Appeals and chief justice of the Georgia Supreme Court (1926-1938). During his career, Russell also ran unsuccessful races for governor, U.S. Representative, and U.S. Senator. He died in Russell, Ga. on Dec. 3, 1938. He was the father of the long-time United States Senator from Georgia from 1933 to 1971, Richard B. Russell, Jr.

Great Moments in the English Navy -- April 28, 1789: The mutiny on HMS Bounty took place this day. On the voyage home to England from Tahiti, a rebel crew took over the British vessel. Fletcher Christian led the mutiny. He set Captain William Bligh and 19 loyal officers and sailors adrift in a launch in the South Pacific, thousands of miles from civilization. The Bounty returned to Tahiti, but eventually set sail bound for its final resting place, Pitcairn Island. A trilogy about the event (one of several classics) is now a few generations old. If you have not read Men Against the Sea (1933-Nordoff and Hall), you should endeavor to find a copy at a local library. The three-book novel is one of the great written works in English, describing teamwork and struggle. There are several movies covering this fabled event -- Clark Gable, Marlin Brando and Mel Gibson portraying Christian, can you name the actors who portrayed Bligh?

The mutineers, shipped off to uninhabited Pitcairn Island, soon fell to drinking and fighting. Only one man and several women and children survived. The man, Alexander Smith, discovered the ship's neglected Bible, repented and transformed the community. This Bible is still on display in a Pitcairn church.

Stung by the seven year itch -- April 29, 1941: The Boston Bees agreed to rename this National League team the Braves, the name used prior to 1935. Casey Stengel was the brave bee keeper from 1938 thru 1940 and beyond. In 2006, the team owner pawned off this asset, because Baseball no longer fit its corporate vision for entertainment. Too bad, it thought more highly of Court TV and reruns than America's historic pastime.

April 29, 1990: The official demolition of the Wall begins near Mr. Brandenburg's gate (in Berlin). Bits and pieces of it had been removed beginning in November 1989. The last state job of the East German border guards was the Wall's removal. Es gibt nur ein Berlin ... General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!

I noticed words crudely spray-painted upon the wall, perhaps by a young Berliner: "This wall will fall. Beliefs become reality." Yes, across Europe, this wall will fall. For it cannot withstand faith; it cannot withstand truth. The wall cannot withstand freedom.
American President Ronald Reagan was right, his critics were wrong.

April 30, 311: The Roman co-ruler (Augustus), commonly called Galerius, publicly had issued an edict of tolerance on this day, thereby ending the violent persecutions under Diocletian, who had recently retired to a villa on the Adriatic Sea. A year later in Milan, the act is confirmed and enlarged by Constantine [the Great]. Christianity would become the dominating force in the Empire in the years to come under his sole rule. Acclaimed as emperor by the army at Eboracum (modern-day York) after his father's death in 306 AD, Constantine emerged victorious in a series of civil wars against the emperors Maxentius and Licinius to become sole ruler of both the west and east empires of Rome by 324 AD. The top picture is a Roman coin of Galerius from 311AD.

The denomination here is a follis (following the monetary reform begun under Diocletian; Billon - copper based metal possibly silvered at the mint) from Roman Cyzicus (Kapu Dagh, Turkey) mint. This is posthumous issue from 311 A.D. - obverse DIVO MAXIMIANO MAXIMINVS AVG FIL, with a laureate head facing right; reverse AETERNAE MEMORIAE GALERI MAXIMIANI, showing a lighted altar, garlanded, ornamented on front panel with eagle standing left, head right, wreath in beak; MKVA in exerge (mint mark). The follis was issued by Maximianus II. The coin looks as if it had been in fairly dry ground for a while, after being in circulation. The hardened sediment has been partially removed by scraping (generally never a good idea).

Gaius Galerius Valerius Maximianus was Cæsar, tetrarch and later Augustus. Although a talented general and administrator, Galerius is better known for his key role in the "Great Persecution" of Christians. He ended the persecution and asked for prayers for his return to health from a serious illness, which took his life less than a week later. Lest you think this somehow unfair, In 303 A.D., the persecution of Christians had increased, beginning at Nicomedia at Galerius' behest (Indeed, St. George was martyred there in 304AD). Galerius died at Sardica. Maximizes II and Licinius split his realm between them. (there are 18 pages of Galerius-related coins at this link)

Similar (second) coin, but struck by Licinius: Billon follis from Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece) mint, posthumous, 311 A.D. - obverse DIVO MAXIMIANO, veiled head right; reverse MEM DIVI MAXIMIANI, domed shrine, closed doors, surmounted by eagle, Although somewhat worn, this coin has been less abused (than the first one shown). Some cities that produced coins had more than one workshop (officinæ) for the same mintmark. On this issue, you see the letter "B" on the reverse for the second such workshop at that date in Thessalonica. Workshops might be indicated in Roman numerals or greek symbols, such as the Δ ("delta") for 4th workshop or II for the second one.

Thessalonica (Salonika, Greece): many of you will recognize the ancient name of the city because of the letters of Paul that survive in the Bible which were written to the congregation in that city, as well as several other mentions. Acts 16:9 And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” 16:10 And when Paul had seen the vision, immediately we {Paul, Silas and Luke} sought to go {about A.D. 53} on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the good news to them. Thessalonica was in Macedonia, an important city; it develops historical status as the Συμβασιλεύουσα (Symvasilévousa) or "co-reigning" city of the Byzantine Empire, alongside Constantinople.

The Alhambra Decree (also known as the Edict of Expulsion) was a proclamation issued on March 31, 1492, by the Most Catholic monarchs of Spain (Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon) ordering the removal of practicing Jews from the Kingdoms of Castile and Aragon and its territories and possessions. As a result a large community migrated to Thessalonica, residing in the center of the old city (and still speaking Spanish as late as the early 20th Century). Macedonia was under Turkish (Ottoman Empire) rule until the outset of the 20th century, when it came under Greek control. The Great Fire of August 1917 was a conflagration that did away with two thirds of the city, destroying most all of the old city. The sorrows of that community were not yet at an end. During World War II, the Nazis occupied Greece and removed its Jewish population to the death camps. Most did not survive that expulsion.
April 30, 1562: Off the Coast of Florida near what would become (under the Spanish) Saint Augustine, a French privateer and explorer first sights the New World. A Huguenot of the city of Dieppe, Jean Ribault was a successful captain for Admiral Gaspar de Coligny's navy. Coligny selected him to establish a Huguenot colony in Florida. Actually, it was to be a French colony, populated by persons of the Protestant faith (Huguenots), to stand in opposition to the Spanish, as well as to prove the loyalty of the Huguenots to the greater French cause.

With Rene Laudonnière as his lieutenant, Ribault reached the St. Johns River on April 30, 1562. Ribault selected a place to settle beside what is today known as Port Royal Sound, South Carolina, calling it Charlesfort. Today we know it as Paris Island. Returning to Europe to get supplies, Ribault discovered the French ports closed by the religious war between Protestants and Catholics. Seeking help from England, Ribault went to London, where he was arrested. By the time he was released, a new settlement near present-day Jacksonville (Fort Caroline) was under the command of Laudonnière, even though the Charlesfort effort had failed.

Spain sought the destruction of Fort Caroline. Spanish forces under Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and the relief effort under Ribault left Europe virtually at the same moment, the Spanish greatly outnumbering the French, but in ships of poorer quality. The French arrived a ahead of the Spanish fleet and beat off the first attack. Ribault went on the offensive, but a hurricane wrecked most of the his fleet. The Spanish, meanwhile, during the height of the storm, marched overland and caught the French offguard. A massacre ensued. Ribault later surrendered what was left of his men and he was executed by Menéndez, along with those who were not or would not become Catholic again on October 12, 1565 (Le massacre de Matanzas Inlet).
Great Moments in Banking History -- Think about it -- April 31, 1728: The Scottish Royal Bank invents first the overdraft when a Mr. William Hogg overdraws his account by 1000 Pounds sterling ($125,000 in today's value) {This week history in Scotland -- actually it was 31 May according to the Hogg Family page}

April 31, 1851: The town of Hazelton, Pennsylvania is first incorporated. Want to know more? On April 31, 1864, the Secretary of War requested Governor Seymour to furnish one or two regiments of militia to guard deserters, stragglers, etc., being forwarded to the army. Two days later Major-General Dix, by the authority of the President, called on the Governor for one or two more regiments to occupy the defenses of the New York Harbor from History of New York. After April 31, 1991, the gold córdoba became the sole legal currency of Nicaragua and was pegged to the United States dollar at a rate of US$1 = 5 gold córdobas, a rate it maintained throughout 1992 -- More Here.

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 !
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Betsy Ross-1777Bennington1814

Early GA Flag Gwenn Ha Du 
qui est le drapeau breton 
circa 1925* * *  04/25/03  * * * 
a flag based on history, 
but yet looking to the future

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