Tuesday, May 03, 2005

"This Day In History" Dept

Okay, here's my blogosphere discovery of the day. This is my kind of this-day-in-history column. I presume that I don't have to remind you of the immortal words of George Sayonara (well, okay, for those of you who aren't as well read as I am, those words were, "See ya later, hosers").

Notable entries for today:

1952 - Joseph Fletcher became the first person to reach the exact geographic North Pole, other than indigenous people, who do not count, since they have no PR. Explorers Robert Peary and Frederick Cook had previously claimed to reach the North Pole, and had disputed one another's claims. Neither is likely to have made it to the exact spot. On the other hand, they walked, while Fletcher flew. So, they were both dumb and failures.

1982 - Argentina lost its only cruiser to a British submarine in the Falkland Islands War, leading them to send in their plane.

Yesterday was a good day at the Christoblog Institute for Historical Research, as well.

1598 - Henry IV signed the Treaty of Vervins, which forever brought peace between Spain and France.

1668 - The War of Devolution ends in France. I'm just going to pretend I know what a War of Devolution is.

1670 - The Hudson's Bay Company was chartered under England's King Charles, to take advantage of the valuable fur to be found in the part of North America now generally forgotten, except by modern day Canadians, who apparently still live there.

1776 - Under the premise that it's better for "the enemy of my enemy to die fighting my enemy than for my enemy to kill its enemy when that enemy is me", France and Spain choose to give arms to American rebels fighting the British.

1808 - Spanish rebels led a revolt against French rule in Madrid during the Peninsula War. This was back in the days of Napoleon, before the French were into surrender, and the revolution was put down, with many civilians shot in order to teach them a lesson. No wait, it was in order to kill them.

1813 - Napolean defeated the Russian and Prussian army at Grossgorschen, using only a toothpick and comb.

1919 - The first domestic air service began. Four passengers were flown a total of eleven feet. Each was charged a different price, but one earned frequent flier miles. Nevertheless, the flight netted a negative $42,000. Major airlines have followed this model ever since.

1933 - The Iverness Courier of Loch Ness in Scotland reported the sighting of a monster in the local lake, after several men reported seeing the beast water skiing behind a UFO. Newspapers all over sent reporters to cover the story. You would think Nessy had faked her own abduction to get out of a wedding or something.

Yours in the service of our children's education,

The Peril

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