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taztug

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Message Posted: May 10, 2006 12:44:24 PM

On May 10th the following happend in the old west:

Tanscontinental Railroad
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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Aug 1, 2014 3:31:58 AM

1981 – MTV began broadcasting in the U.S.
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cgstach
Champion Author Chicago

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Message Posted: Jul 31, 2014 8:38:44 AM

* 1975 - James Riddle Hoffa, one of the most influential American labor leaders of the 20th century, disappears in Detroit, Michigan, never to be heard from again. Though he is popularly believed to have been the victim of a Mafia hit, conclusive evidence was never found, and Hoffa's death remains shrouded in mystery to this day.

Born in 1913 to a poor coal miner in Brazil, Indiana, Jimmy Hoffa proved a natural leader in his youth. At the age of 20, he helped organize a labor strike in Detroit, and remained an advocate for downtrodden workers for the rest of his life. Hoffa's charisma and talents as a local organizer quickly got him noticed by the Teamsters and carried him upward through its ranks. Then a small but rapidly growing union, the Teamsters organized truckers across the country, and through the use of strikes, boycotts and some more powerful though less legal methods of protest, won contract demands on behalf of workers.

Hoffa became president of the Teamsters in 1957, when its former leader was imprisoned for bribery. As chief, Hoffa was lauded for his tireless work to expand the union, and for his unflagging devotion to even the organization's least powerful members. His caring and approachability were captured in one of the more well-known quotes attributed to him: "You got a problem? Call me. Just pick up the phone."

Hoffa's dedication to the worker and his electrifying public speeches made him wildly popular, both among his fellow workers and the politicians and businessmen with whom he negotiated. Yet, for all the battles he fought and won on behalf of American drivers, he also had a dark side. In Hoffa's time, many Teamster leaders partnered with the Mafia in racketeering, extortion and embezzlement. Hoffa himself had relationships with high-ranking mobsters, and was the target of several government investigations throughout the 1960s. In 1967, he was convicted of bribery and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

While in jail, Hoffa never ceded his office, and when Richard Nixon commuted his sentence in 1971, he was poised to make a comeback. Released on condition of not participating in union activities for 10 years, Hoffa was planning to fight the restriction in court when he disappeared on July 31, 1975, from the parking lot of a restaurant in Detroit, not far from where he got his start as a labor organizer. Several conspiracy theories have been floated about Hoffa’s disappearance and the location of his remains, but the truth remains unknown.

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lvskyguy
Champion Author Las Vegas

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Message Posted: Jul 31, 2014 3:03:08 AM

1948 – Idlewild Field, later to be renamed JFK International Airport in 1963, was dedicated.
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rjojo40AL
Champion Author Nevada

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Message Posted: Jul 30, 2014 11:02:00 AM

Jul 30, 1994: Man charged in murder of Megan Kanka.

Jesse Timmendequas is charged with the murder of seven-year-old Megan Kanka in New Jersey. Kanka's death inspired Megan's Law, a statute enacted in 1994 requiring that information about convicted sex felons be available to the public. Versions of Megan's Law have been passed in many states since her murder.

Megan had last been seen riding her bike outside her home in West Windsor Township, New Jersey, on July 29. Her parents found her bike on the front lawn and immediately began to search for her. The following day, her body was discovered in Mercer County Park. Jesse Timmendequas, who lived across the street from Kanka and had two prior convictions for sexual assault, was arrested.

In the aftermath of this horrible crime, Megan's parents lobbied state legislators for a new law, arguing that if they had known about Timmendequas' background they would have been able to protect their daughter. New Jersey and several other states passed laws following the public outcry. A database of all types of sex offenders is now accessible through a 900 number and CD-ROMs at police stations around the state.

Yet problems have arisen from Megan's Law. Apparently inspired by the circulation of flyers describing his previous sexual offense, Michael Patton committed suicide in July 1998. In addition, homosexuals who were prosecuted years earlier for consensual sex with adults must be registered in this database. People in some communities have driven sex offenders out of town, often using violence and illegal means. Evidence as to the ability of Megan's Law to actually protect children or deter crime was inconclusive in the first few years of its enactment. Megan's Law became a federal law in 1996.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 30, 2014 9:17:32 AM

* 1965 - President Lyndon B. Johnson signs Medicare, a health insurance program for elderly Americans, into law. At the bill-signing ceremony, which took place at the Truman Library in Independence, Missouri, former President Harry S. Truman was enrolled as Medicare's first beneficiary and received the first Medicare card. Johnson wanted to recognize Truman, who, in 1945, had become the first president to propose national health insurance, an initiative that was opposed at the time by Congress.

The Medicare program, providing hospital and medical insurance for Americans age 65 or older, was signed into law as an amendment to the Social Security Act of 1935. Some 19 million people enrolled in Medicare when it went into effect in 1966. In 1972, eligibility for the program was extended to Americans under 65 with certain disabilities and people of all ages with permanent kidney disease requiring dialysis or transplant. In December 2003, President George W. Bush signed into law the Medicare Modernization Act (MMA), which added outpatient prescription drug benefits to Medicare.

Medicare is funded entirely by the federal government and paid for in part through payroll taxes. Medicare is currently a source of controversy due to the enormous strain it puts on the federal budget. Throughout its history, the program also has been plagued by fraud--committed by patients, doctors and hospitals--that has cost taxpayers billions of dollars.

Medicaid, a state and federally funded program that offers health coverage to certain low-income people, was also signed into law by President Johnson on July 30, 1965, as an amendment to the Social Security Act.

In 1977, the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) was created to administer Medicare and work with state governments to administer Medicaid. HCFA, which was later renamed the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), is part of the Department of Health and Human Services and is headquartered in Baltimore.

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WES03
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Jul 30, 2014 8:53:36 AM

1864 - Civil War - Battle of the Crater near Petersburg, Va.
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lvskyguy
Champion Author Las Vegas

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Message Posted: Jul 30, 2014 3:02:37 AM

1975 – Jimmy Hoffa disappeared from the parking lot of the Machus Red Fox Restaurant in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan about 2:30PM. He was never seen or heard from again. On this date in 1982 he was declared legally dead.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 29, 2014 10:23:10 AM

* 1958 - The U.S. Congress passes legislation establishing the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), a civilian agency responsible for coordinating America's activities in space. NASA has since sponsored space expeditions, both human and mechanical, that have yielded vital information about the solar system and universe. It has also launched numerous earth-orbiting satellites that have been instrumental in everything from weather forecasting to navigation to global communications.

NASA was created in response to the Soviet Union's October 4, 1957 launch of its first satellite, Sputnik I. The 183-pound, basketball-sized satellite orbited the earth in 98 minutes. The Sputnik launch caught Americans by surprise and sparked fears that the Soviets might also be capable of sending missiles with nuclear weapons from Europe to America. The United States prided itself on being at the forefront of technology, and, embarrassed, immediately began developing a response, signaling the start of the U.S.-Soviet space race.

On November 3, 1957, the Soviets launched Sputnik II, which carried a dog named Laika. In December, America attempted to launch a satellite of its own, called Vanguard, but it exploded shortly after takeoff. On January 31, 1958, things went better with Explorer I, the first U.S. satellite to successfully orbit the earth. In July of that year, Congress passed legislation officially establishing NASA from the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics and other government agencies, and confirming the country's commitment to winning the space race. In May 1961, President John F. Kennedy declared that America should put a man on the moon by the end of the decade. On July 20, 1969, NASA's Apollo 11 mission achieved that goal and made history when astronaut Neil Armstrong became the first person to set foot on the moon, saying "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind."

NASA has continued to make great advances in space exploration since the first moonwalk, including playing a major part in the construction of the International Space Station. The agency has also suffered tragic setbacks, however, such as the disasters that killed the crews of the Challenger space shuttle in 1986 and the Columbia space shuttle in 2003. In 2004, President George Bush challenged NASA to return to the moon by 2020 and establish "an extended human presence" there that could serve as a launching point for "human missions to Mars and to worlds beyond."

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leemun
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Message Posted: Jul 29, 2014 12:38:27 AM

1928 - Walt Disney's "Steamboat Willie" is released. Steamboat Willie is a 1928 American animated short film directed by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks. It was produced in black-and-white by Walt Disney Studios and was released by Celebrity Productions. The cartoon is considered the debut of Mickey Mouse and his girlfriend Minnie, despite both the characters appearing several months earlier in a test screening of Plane Crazy. Steamboat Willie was the third of Mickey's films to be produced, but was the first to be distributed.

The film is also notable for being the first cartoon with synchronized sound. It was the first cartoon to feature a fully post-produced soundtrack which distinguished it from earlier sound cartoons such as Inkwell Studios' Song Car-Tunes (1924–1927) and Van Beuren Studios' Dinner Time (1928). Also distinguishing Steamboat Willie from earlier sound cartoons was the level of popularity.
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Joisygal
Champion Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Jul 28, 2014 11:27:11 PM

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (1929): First lady of the United States who worked as a reporter before marrying John F. Kennedy in 1953. In 1947, Onassis was named, "Debutante of the Year," before going off to complete her education at Vassar College and the Sorbonne. Marrying Kennedy placed Onassis in the political spotlight, for he was one of the most dynamic Senators on Capitol Hill. To the White House, Onassis brought a warmth and grace that has not since been duplicated, and will never be forgotten. Her two children, Caroline and John, were her pride and joy, and she did everything in her power to protect them after their father was assassinated. In 1968, she married Aristotle Onassis, and later in life worked as an Editor for Doubleday Books (1978-94), before passing away in 1994.
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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 28, 2014 11:51:39 AM

Jul 28, 1868: 14th Amendment adopted.

Following its ratification by the necessary three-quarters of U.S. states, the 14th Amendment, guaranteeing to African Americans citizenship and all its privileges, is officially adopted into the U.S. Constitution.

Two years after the Civil War, the Reconstruction Acts of 1867 divided the South into five military districts, where new state governments, based on universal manhood suffrage, were to be established. Thus began the period known as Radical Reconstruction, which saw the 14th Amendment, which had been passed by Congress in 1866, ratified in July 1868. The amendment resolved pre-Civil War questions of African American citizenship by stating that "all persons born or naturalized in the United States...are citizens of the United States and of the state in which they reside." The amendment then reaffirmed the privileges and rights of all citizens, and granted all these citizens the "equal protection of the laws."

In the decades after its adoption, the equal protection clause was cited by a number of African American activists who argued that racial segregation denied them the equal protection of law. However, in 1896, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Plessy v. Ferguson that states could constitutionally provide segregated facilities for African Americans, so long as they were equal to those afforded white persons. The Plessy v. Ferguson decision, which announced federal toleration of the so-called "separate but equal" doctrine, was eventually used to justify segregating all public facilities, including railroad cars, restaurants, hospitals, and schools. However, "colored" facilities were never equal to their white counterparts, and African Americans suffered through decades of debilitating discrimination in the South and elsewhere. In 1954, Plessy v. Ferguson was finally struck down by the Supreme Court in its ruling in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 28, 2014 8:20:24 AM

* 1945 - A United States military plane crashes into the Empire State Building on this day in 1945, killing 14 people. The freak accident was caused by heavy fog.

The B-25 Mitchell bomber, with two pilots and one passenger aboard, was flying from New Bedford, Massachusetts, to LaGuardia Airport in New York City. As it came into the metropolitan area on that Saturday morning, the fog was particularly thick. Air-traffic controllers instructed the plane to fly to Newark Airport instead.

This new flight plan took the plane over Manhattan; the crew was specifically warned that the Empire State Building, the tallest building in the city at the time, was not visible. The bomber was flying relatively slowly and quite low, seeking better visibility, when it came upon the Chrysler Building in midtown. It swerved to avoid the building but the move sent it straight into the north side of the Empire State Building, near the 79th floor.

Upon impact, the plane's jet fuel exploded, filling the interior of the building with flames all the way down to the 75th floor and sending flames out of the hole the plane had ripped open in the building's side. One engine from the plane went straight through the building and landed in a penthouse apartment across the street. Other plane parts ended up embedded in and on top of nearby buildings. The other engine snapped an elevator cable while at least one woman was riding in the elevator car. The emergency auto brake saved the woman from crashing to the bottom, but the engine fell down the shaft and landed on top of it. Quick-thinking rescuers pulled the woman from the elevator, saving her life.

Since it was a Saturday, fewer workers than normal were in the building. Only 11 people in the building were killed, some suffering burns from the fiery jet fuel and others after being thrown out of the building. All 11 victims were workers from War Relief Services department of the National Catholic Welfare Conference, into the offices of which the plane had crashed. The three people on the plane were also killed.

An 18 foot by 20 foot hole was left in the side of the Empire State Building. Though its structural integrity was not affected, the crash did cause nearly $1 million in damages, about $10.5 million in today's money.


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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 27, 2014 11:04:59 AM

Jul 27, 1981: Adam Walsh is abducted.

Adam John Walsh, age six, is abducted from a mall in Hollywood, Florida, and later found murdered. In the aftermath of the crime, Adam's father, John Walsh, became a leading victims' rights activist and host of the long-running television show America's Most Wanted.

Early in the afternoon on July 27, Adam entered a Sears department store with his mother, Reve. She allowed him to watch a group of older boys play video games in the toy department while she shopped nearby. When she returned for him less than 10 minutes later, he was gone. Investigators learned a teenage security guard had asked the older children to leave because they were causing trouble. Adam, reportedly a timid child who might have been afraid to speak up, followed one of the older boys out and didn't tell the guard his mother was in the store. He was likely kidnapped outside the store after the other child left. Adam's parents launched a massive hunt for their son; however, on August 10, 1981, his severed head was discovered by two fishermen in a drainage canal in Vero Beach, Florida, some 100 miles from Hollywood. His body was never found.

In October 1983, career criminal Ottis Ellwood Toole, then an inmate at a Raiford, Florida, prison, confessed to Adam's abduction and murder and also implicated serial killer Henry Lee Lucas in the crime. However, investigators soon discovered that Lucas couldn't have been involved because he was in jail in Virginia when Adam was kidnapped. Toole then admitted he had carried out the crime on his own and police announced they had found Adam's killer. However, investigators were unable to locate Adam's body where Toole claimed to have buried it and without any physical evidence the Florida state attorney couldn't prosecute the case. Several months later, Toole recanted his confession. In the years that followed, Toole repeatedly confessed to killing Adam Walsh and then took back his story. He died of cirrhosis of the liver and AIDS in 1996 in a Florida prison, where he was on Death Row for another murder. Years later, serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, who was living in Florida at the time of Adam's abduction, was considered a possible suspect in the case. Dahmer died in a Wisconsin prison in 1994. On December 16, 2008, the police department in Hollywood, Florida, announced that the case against Toole was strong enough to close the investigation into Adam's death.

John Walsh channeled his grief into advocacy work for crime victims. He was a founder in 1984 of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and in 1988 he became host of America's Most Wanted, a show that has since helped law enforcement officials track down hundreds of fugitives. On July 27, 2006, 25 years after Adam went missing, President George W. Bush signed the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act into law, which created a national database of convicted child sex offenders, strengthened federal penalties for crimes against children and provided funding and training for law enforcement to fight crimes involving the sexual exploitation of children via the Internet.
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cgstach
Champion Author Chicago

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Message Posted: Jul 27, 2014 7:57:34 AM

* 1996 - In Atlanta, Georgia, the XXVI Summer Olympiad is disrupted by the explosion of a nail-laden pipe bomb in Centennial Olympic Park. The bombing, which occurred during a free concert, killed a mother who had brought her daughter to hear the rock music and injured more than 100 others, including a Turkish cameraman who suffered a fatal heart attack after the blast. Police were warned of the bombing in advance, but the bomb exploded before the anonymous caller said it would, leading authorities to suspect that the law enforcement officers who descended on the park were indirectly targeted. Within a few days, Richard Jewell, a security guard at the concert, was charged with the crime. However, evidence against him was dubious at best, and in October he was fully cleared of all responsibility in the bombing.

On January 16, 1997, another bomb exploded outside an abortion clinic in suburban Atlanta, blowing a hole in the building's wall. An hour later, while police and ambulance workers were still at the scene, a second blast went off near a large trash bin, injuring seven people. As at Centennial Park, a nail-laden bomb was used and authorities were targeted. Then, only five days later, also in Atlanta, a nail-laden bomb exploded near the patio area of a crowded gay and lesbian nightclub, injuring five people. A second bomb in a backpack was found outside after the first explosion, but police safely detonated it. Federal investigators linked the bombings, but no suspect was arrested.

On January 29, 1998, an abortion clinic was bombed in Birmingham, Alabama, killing an off-duty police officer and critically wounding a nurse. An automobile reported at the crime scene was later found abandoned near the Georgia state line, and investigators traced it to Eric Robert Rudolph, a 31-year-old carpenter. Although Rudolph was not immediately found, authorities positively identified him as the culprit in the Birmingham and Atlanta bombings, and an extensive manhunt began.

Despite being one of the FBI's most wanted fugitives, Rudolph eluded the authorities for five years by hiding in the mountains in western North Carolina before finally being captured on May 31, 2003. As part of a plea agreement that helped him avoid a death sentence, Rudolph pled guilty to all three bombings, as well as the 1998 murder of a police officer, and was sentenced on July 18, 2005 to four consecutive life terms.

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lvskyguy
Champion Author Las Vegas

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Message Posted: Jul 27, 2014 3:03:31 AM

1987 – The first expedition of the Titanic began.
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cgstach
Champion Author Chicago

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Message Posted: Jul 26, 2014 4:28:03 PM

* 1775 - The U.S. postal system is established by the Second Continental Congress, with Benjamin Franklin as its first postmaster general. Franklin (1706-1790) put in place the foundation for many aspects of today's mail system. During early colonial times in the 1600s, few American colonists needed to send mail to each other; it was more likely that their correspondence was with letter writers in Britain. Mail deliveries from across the Atlantic were sporadic and could take many months to arrive. There were no post offices in the colonies, so mail was typically left at inns and taverns. In 1753, Benjamin Franklin, who had been postmaster of Philadelphia, became one of two joint postmasters general for the colonies. He made numerous improvements to the mail system, including setting up new, more efficient colonial routes and cutting delivery time in half between Philadelphia and New York by having the weekly mail wagon travel both day and night via relay teams. Franklin also debuted the first rate chart, which standardized delivery costs based on distance and weight. In 1774, the British fired Franklin from his postmaster job because of his revolutionary activities. However, the following year, he was appointed postmaster general of the United Colonies by the Continental Congress. Franklin held the job until late in 1776, when he was sent to France as a diplomat. He left a vastly improved mail system, with routes from Florida to Maine and regular service between the colonies and Britain. President George Washington appointed Samuel Osgood, a former Massachusetts congressman, as the first postmaster general of the American nation under the new U.S. constitution in 1789. At the time, there were approximately 75 post offices in the country.

Today, the United States has over 40,000 post offices and the postal service delivers 212 billion pieces of mail each year to over 144 million homes and businesses in the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam, the American Virgin Islands and American Samoa. The postal service is the nation's largest civilian employer, with over 700,000 career workers, who handle more than 44 percent of the world's cards and letters. The postal service is a not-for-profit, self-supporting agency that covers its expenses through postage (stamp use in the United States started in 1847) and related products. The postal service gets the mail delivered, rain or shine, using everything from planes to mules. However, it's not cheap: The U.S. Postal Service says that when fuel costs go up by just one penny, its own costs rise by $8 million.
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rjojo40AL
Champion Author Nevada

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Message Posted: Jul 26, 2014 11:12:59 AM

Jul 26, 1998: Three race fans killed at Michigan Speedway.

The U.S. 500, the most prestigious race in the Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) series, dissolves into tragedy on this day in 1998, when three fans are killed and six others wounded by flying debris from a car at Michigan Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan.

CART (later known as Champ Car) was an open-wheel racing circuit created in the late 1970s by racing team owners frustrated with the direction of the existing United States Automobile Club (USAC). Open-wheel cars, built specifically for racing, are sophisticated vehicles built for speed, with small, open cockpits and wheels located outside the car's main body. In CART races, as well as those of its rival open-wheel circuit, the Indy Racing League, drivers often achieved speeds of up to 230 mph in the straightaways. (In comparison, drivers in National Association for Stock Car Racing--better known as NASCAR--events reach some 200 mph.)

While rounding the fourth turn at Michigan Speedway (a two-mile oval) in the 1998 U.S. 500, driver Adrian Fernandez lost control of his car and crashed into one of the raceway's retaining walls. The car broke apart, and the right front tire and part of the suspension flew over the 15-foot-high wall and into the stands. Traveling nearly 200 mph, the debris hit fans in the eighth and 10th rows. Two people were killed instantly; another died moments later, and six others received minor injuries. To the outrage of Sports Illustrated reporter Rick Reilly, who wrote a scathing editorial about the incident in the magazine, race officials didn't stop the event, which was won by the young Canadian driver Greg Moore. (In a tragic twist of fate, Moore died in October 1999, after a fatal crash in the CART season finale, the Marlboro 500, in California.) In August 1998, Michigan Speedway announced that it would extend the protective fencing around all of its grandstand sections to a total of around 17 feet in an effort to prevent further accidents.

The CART circuit changed its name to Champ Car in 2004. Four years later, plagued by financial troubles, the Champ Car World Series declared bankruptcy and merged with the Indy Racing League.
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lvskyguy
Champion Author Las Vegas

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Message Posted: Jul 26, 2014 3:01:35 AM

1990 – The ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) was signed into law by President George Bush.
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leemun
Champion Author Utah

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Message Posted: Jul 25, 2014 9:14:24 PM

1603 - James VI of Scotland is crowned James I of English uniting kingdoms of England and Scotland
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rjojo40AL
Champion Author Nevada

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Message Posted: Jul 25, 2014 8:46:00 PM

Jul 25, 1941: Henry Ford writes fan letter to Mahatma Gandhi.

On this day in 1941, the American automaker Henry Ford sits down at his desk in Dearborn, Michigan and writes a letter to the Indian nationalist leader Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. The letter effusively praises Gandhi and his campaign of civil disobedience aimed at forcing the British colonial government out of India.

By July of 1941, Ford's pacifist views led him to despair at the current global situation: Nazi Germany had invaded Poland, causing Britain and France to declare war against it. The United States, led by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, was firmly on the side of the Allies, but Ford was convinced that the country should remain neutral, despite mounting pressure from the government for his company to start mass-producing airplanes to help defeat the Nazis. The previous May, Ford had reluctantly bowed to this pressure, opening a massive production facility for airplane production at Willow Run, near Dearborn, to manufacture B-24E Liberator bombers for the Allied war effort.

As Douglas Brinkley writes in "Wheels for the World," his history of Ford Motor Company, the automaker disliked imperialism and was hopeful that Gandhi's campaign would succeed in pushing the British out of India and establishing Indian home rule. In addition, Ford Motor Company had long enjoyed healthy sales in the cities of Bombay (now Mumbai) and Calcutta. Ford's letter to Gandhi, now included in the Henry Ford Museum and Library, read: "I want to take this opportunity of sending you a message...to tell you how deeply I admire your life and message. You are one of the greatest men the world has ever known."

The letter was sent to the Mahatma (as Gandhi was known) via T.A. Raman, the London editor of the United Press of India. According to Raman, Brinkley recounts, Gandhi didn't receive the letter until December 8, 1941--the day after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Greatly pleased, he sent in response a portable spinning wheel, one of the old-fashioned devices that Gandhi famously used to produce his own cloth. The wheel, autographed in Hindi and English, was shipped some 12,000 miles and personally delivered to Ford by Raman in Greenfield Village, Michigan. Ford kept it as a good luck charm, as well as a symbol of the principles of simplicity and economic independence that both he and Gandhi championed.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 25, 2014 5:28:14 PM

* 1978 - Louise Joy Brown, the world's first baby to be conceived via in vitro fertilization (IVF) is born at Oldham and District General Hospital in Manchester, England, to parents Lesley and Peter Brown. The healthy baby was delivered shortly before midnight by caesarean section and weighed in at five pounds, 12 ounces.

Before giving birth to Louise, Lesley Brown had suffered years of infertility due to blocked fallopian tubes. In November 1977, she underwent the then-experimental IVF procedure. A mature egg was removed from one of her ovaries and combined in a laboratory dish with her husband’s sperm to form an embryo. The embryo then was implanted into her uterus a few days later. Her IVF doctors, British gynecologist Patrick Steptoe and scientist Robert Edwards, had begun their pioneering collaboration a decade earlier. Once the media learned of the pregnancy, the Browns faced intense public scrutiny. Louise’s birth made headlines around the world and raised various legal and ethical questions.

The Browns had a second daughter, Natalie, several years later, also through IVF. In May 1999, Natalie became the first IVF baby to give birth to a child of her own. The child’s conception was natural, easing some concerns that female IVF babies would be unable to get pregnant naturally. In December 2006, Louise Brown, the original "test tube baby," gave birth to a boy, Cameron John Mullinder, who also was conceived naturally.

Today, IVF is considered a mainstream medical treatment for infertility. Hundreds of thousands of children around the world have been conceived through the procedure, in some cases with donor eggs and sperm.

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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 25, 2014 3:02:06 AM

1965 – At the Newport Folk Festival, Bob Dylan went electric with guitars, creating a major change in folk and rock music. He was booed by some fans due to the “sound” as a departure from the ‘folk music sound.’
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 24, 2014 7:13:32 PM

* 1998 - South Korea's government opens the bidding for the Kia Motors Corporation, the country's third-largest car company, which went bankrupt during an economic crisis that gripped much of Asia.

Founded on the outskirts of Seoul in 1944, Kia began as a small manufacturer of steel tubing and bicycle parts. The name of the company was derived from the Chinese characters "ki" (meaning "to arise" or "to come out of") and "a" (which stood for Asia). By the late 1950s, Kia had branched out from bicycles to motor scooters, and in the early 1970s the company launched into automobile production. Kia's Sohari plant, completed by 1973, was Korea's first fully integrated automobile production facility; it rolled out the Brisa, the country's first passenger car, in 1974.

Kia's lineup by the late 1980s included the Concord, Capital, Potentia and Pride. Ford Motor Company brought the Pride to the United States, calling it the Ford Festiva; the company later sold the Kia Avella as the Ford Aspire. In the 1990s, Kia began selling cars in the United States under its own name, beginning with the Sephia. At first available in only a few states, Kia gradually rolled out across the country, jumping on the success of the sport-utility-vehicle (SUV) category in the mid-1990s with its Sportage, released in 1995.

By 1997, Kia was struggling financially, and that July it collapsed under $10 billion worth of debt. The automaker's failure marked the beginning of a full-blown economic crisis that eventually led South Korea to seek a record international bailout of some $57 billion. Auto sales plummeted nationwide, and by the time bidding for Kia opened in late July 1998, both Hyundai Motor and Daewoo Motor, South Korea's largest and second-largest automakers respectively, had suffered heavy losses as well. The two companies placed bids for Kia and its commercial-vehicle subsidiary, Asia Motors; the other bidders included another local company, Samsung, and Ford Motor, which along with its subsidiary Mazda already owned nearly 17 percent of Kia.

Hyundai managed to win the auction that October, having offered the highest bid; Daewoo was the runner-up. As a subsidiary of Hyundai, Kia made improvements in its cars' quality as well as their reliability, including the introduction of a new warranty program in 2001. It also began concentrating intently on the European market, building a sleek new $109 million design center in Frankfurt, Germany, in early 2008. At the Paris Motor Show that fall, Kia unveiled its new Soul, a subcompact mini multi-purpose-vehicle (MPV). Designed jointly by studios in California and South Korea, the Soul debuted on the global marketplace in early 2009.

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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 24, 2014 11:29:42 AM

Jul 24, 1911: Machu Picchu discovered.

On July 24, 1911, American archeologist Hiram Bingham gets his first look at Machu Picchu, an ancient Inca settlement in Peru that is now one of the world's top tourist destinations.

Tucked away in the rocky countryside northwest of Cuzco, Machu Picchu is believed to have been a summer retreat for Inca leaders, whose civilization was virtually wiped out by Spanish invaders in the 16th century. For hundreds of years afterwards, its existence was a secret known only to the peasants living in the region. That all changed in the summer of 1911, when Bingham arrived with a small team of explorers to search for the famous "lost" cities of the Incas.

Traveling on foot and by mule, Bingham and his team made their way from Cuzco into the Urubamba Valley, where a local farmer told them of some ruins located at the top of a nearby mountain. The farmer called the mountain Machu Picchu, which meant "Old Peak" in the native Quechua language. The next day--July 24--after a tough climb to the mountain's ridge in cold and drizzly weather, Bingham met a small group of peasants who showed him the rest of the way. Led by an 11-year-old boy, Bingham got his first glimpse of the intricate network of stone terraces marking the entrance to Machu Picchu.

The excited Bingham spread the word about his discovery in a best-selling book, sending hordes of eager tourists flocking to Peru to follow in his footsteps up the Inca trail. The site itself stretches an impressive five miles, with over 3,000 stone steps linking its many different levels. Today, more than 300,000 people tramp through Machu Picchu every year, braving crowds and landslides to see the sun set over the towering stone monuments of the "Sacred City" and marvel at the mysterious splendor of one of the world's most famous man-made wonders.
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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 24, 2014 3:02:15 AM

1935 – A Heat Wave from The Dust Bowl had temps in Chicago to reach 109F and 104 in Milwaukee.
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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 23, 2014 9:51:06 PM

Jul 23, 2007: Honda produces 6 millionth Civic in North America.

During the week ending on July 23, 2007, Honda Motor Company Ltd. produces its 6 millionth Civic in North America, according to an article in Automotive News.

Honda's history goes back to 1946, when the engineer Honda Soichiro founded his namesake technical research institute near Hamamatsu in order to produce internal-combustion engines. Incorporated as Honda Motor Company two years later and headquartered in Tokyo, it began producing motorcycles in 1949 and later expanded to automobiles. The first-generation Honda Civic, a subcompact, two-door model, made its debut in July 1972, followed by a three-door version that September. As suggested by its name, Honda saw the Civic as its car for the people; in this way, it was similar to the original "people's car," the Volkswagen Beetle. The Civic was an immediate success in its home country, winning Japan's Car of the Year award for three consecutive years in 1972, 1973 and 1974. Honda began exporting the car to the United States in 1972, and to Canada the following year. In the latter nation, the Civic became the best-selling import car for 28 consecutive months from 1976 to 1978.

The small, fuel-efficient Civic arrived at an opportune time, as the 1972 oil crisis had thrown a wrench in the existing American car market, with its emphasis on big, powerful, gas-guzzling vehicles. Beginning in the 1980s, Honda made the localization of the Civic's production in America a cornerstone of its efforts to expand its U.S. business overall. Honda had begun operations in the United States in 1959 with the establishment of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., the automaker's first overseas subsidiary. In 1986, Honda began making the Civic (it had already started production of the mid-size Accord) at its plant in Marysville, Ohio. The following year, Honda built a second U.S. plant in East Liberty, Ohio, in 1989; its production was largely focused on the Civic.

In 2002, Honda added the Civic to its gasoline-electric hybrid lineup, which began with the Insight in 1999. Within a year, hybrid Civics accounted for some 10 percent of the car's total sales. By July 2007, when the 6 millionth North American Civic rolled off the line, Honda was operating 12 manufacturing plants and employed more than 30,000 people in North America; more than 75 percent of all Honda and Acura (the automaker's higher-end brand) vehicles sold there were produced and assembled locally. In May 2008, on the brink of a growing economic crisis that would send the automotive industry reeling, American Honda Motor Co., Inc., announced that Civic sales that month (53,299) had shattered the previous monthly record for any car in its lineup.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 23, 2014 9:11:40 AM

* 1982, Vic Morrow and two child actors, Renee Shinn Chen and Myca Dinh Le, are killed in an accident involving a helicopter during filming on the California set of Twilight Zone: The Movie. Morrow, age 53, and the children, ages six and seven, were shooting a Vietnam War battle scene in which they were supposed to be running from a pursuing helicopter. Special-effects explosions on the set caused the pilot of the low-flying craft to lose control and crash into the three victims. The accident took place on the film’s last scheduled day of shooting.

Twilight Zone co-director John Landis (Blues Brothers, Trading Places, National Lampoon’s Animal House) and four other men working on the film, including the special-effects coordinator and the helicopter pilot, were charged with involuntary manslaughter. According to a 1987 New York Times report, it was the first time a film director faced criminal charges for events that occurred while making a movie. During the subsequent trial, the defense maintained the crash was an accident that could not have been predicted while the prosecution claimed Landis and his crew had been reckless and violated laws regarding child actors, including regulations about their working conditions and hours. Following the emotional 10-month trial, a jury acquitted all five defendants in 1987. The familes of the three victims filed lawsuits against Landis, Warner Brothers and Twilight Zone co-director and producer Steven Spielberg that were settled for undisclosed amounts.

Twilight Zone: The Movie was released in the summer of 1983. The film, which received mixed reviews, was based on a popular science fiction TV series of the same name that aired from 1959 to 1964 and was created by Rod Serling. In the movie, four directors-- Landis, Steven Spielberg, Joe Dante and George Miller--each adapted a different episode of the TV series, which chronicled the stories of people who found themselves in highly unusual situations.

Vic Morrow had previously appeared in numerous TV shows and such films as The Blackboard Jungle (1955) and The Bad News Bears (1976). He was the father of actress Jennifer Jason Leigh (Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Margot at the Wedding).

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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 23, 2014 3:02:36 AM

1984 – Vanessa William became the first Miss America to resign her title due to nude photos of her published in Penthouse Magazine.
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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 22, 2014 9:42:24 AM

Jul 22, 1991: Cannibal and serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer is caught.

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, police officers spot Tracy Edwards running down the street in handcuffs, and upon investigation, they find one of the grisliest scenes in modern history-Jeffrey Dahmer's apartment.

Edwards told the police that Dahmer had held him at his apartment and threatened to kill him. Although they initially thought the story was dubious, the officers took Edwards back to Dahmer's apartment. Dahmer calmly explained that the whole matter was simply a misunderstanding and the officers almost believed him. However, they spotted a few Polaroid photos of dismembered bodies, and Dahmer was arrested.

When Dahmer's apartment was fully searched, a house of horrors was revealed. In addition to photo albums full of pictures of body parts, the apartment was littered with human remains: Several heads were in the refrigerator and freezer; two skulls were on top of the computer; and a 57-gallon drum containing several bodies decomposing in chemicals was found in a corner of the bedroom. There was also evidence to suggest that Dahmer had been eating some of his victims.

Neighbors told both detectives and the press that they had noticed an awful smell emanating from the apartment but that Dahmer had explained it away as expired meat. However, the most shocking revelation about how Dahmer had managed to conceal his awful crimes in the middle of a city apartment building would come a few days later.

Apparently, police had been called two months earlier about a naked and bleeding 14-year-old boy being chased down an alley by Dahmer. The responding officers actually returned the boy, who had been drugged, to Dahmer's apartment–where he was promptly killed. The officers, who said that they believed it to be a domestic dispute, were later fired.

A forensic examination of the apartment turned up 11 victims–the first of whom disappeared in March 1989, just two months before Dahmer successfully escaped a prison sentence for child molestation by telling the judge that he was desperately seeking to change his conduct. Dahmer later confessed to 17 murders in all, dating back to his first victim in 1978.

The jury rejected Dahmer's insanity defense, and he was sentenced to 15 life terms. He survived one attempt on his life in July 1994, but was killed by another inmate on November 28, 1994.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 22, 2014 8:02:15 AM

* 2002 - Over the strenuous opposition of the United Auto Workers (UAW) and the auto industry, Governor Gray Davis of California signs a stringent law regulating emissions from automobiles.

The U.S. Congress passed the first national fuel economy standards, known as Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, in 1975, in the wake of the 1973 oil embargo.

The standards sought to control emissions of so-called "greenhouse gases" (such as carbon dioxide) from cars and light trucks that contribute to global warming, or the gradual increase in the temperature of the earth's atmosphere. Automakers have historically resisted increases in these standards, as stricter standards usually require an overhaul of their production methods to make cleaner and more fuel-efficient vehicles.

California--which represents 10 percent of the nation's automobile market and is known for its struggles with air pollution--took the lead early in setting stricter fuel emissions standards than the federal government's. Assembly Bill (AB) 1493, which Davis signed into law in July 2002, was the first law in the nation to address the greenhouse gases emitted in automobile exhaust. The law required the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to regulate greenhouse gases under the state's motor vehicle program and gave automakers until the 2009 model year to produce cars and light trucks that would collectively emit 22 percent fewer greenhouse gases by 2012 and 30 percent fewer by 2016.

Despite his well-documented enthusiasm for the Hummer, a sport-utility-vehicle (SUV) known for its prodigious size (and prodigious emission of greenhouse gases), Davis' Republican successor, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, sought to uphold AB 1493 against continuous challenges from the auto industry and the presidential administration of George W. Bush. Democrat Barack Obama's election as president in 2008 turned the tide in California's favor: In January 2009, Obama directed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to reverse an earlier decision and give California (by then joined by 13 other states) the right to adopt tougher auto emissions standards. That May, Obama announced plans to bring the entire nation up to California's proposed standard, which would make cars nationwide roughly 30 percent cleaner and more fuel-efficient by 2016.

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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 21, 2014 5:29:53 PM

* 1960 - The German government passes the "Law Concerning the Transfer of the Share Rights in Volkswagenwerk Limited Liability Company into Private Hands," known informally as the "Volkswagen Law."

Founded in 1937 and originally under the control of Adolf Hitler's National Socialist (Nazi) Party, Volkswagen would eventually grow into Europe's largest car manufacturer and a symbol of Germany's economic recovery after the devastation of World War II. The Volkswagen Law, passed in July 1960, changed the company to a joint stock corporation, with 20 percent held each by Germany and Lower Saxony, the region in which Volkswagen is still headquartered. By limiting the share of any other stockholder to 20 percent, regardless of how many shares owned, the law effectively protected the company from any attempt at a hostile takeover.

By 2007, the controversial legislation had come under full-blown attack from the European Commission as part of a campaign against protectionist measures in several European capitals. The commission objected not only to the 20 percent voting rights cap but to the law's stipulation that measures taken at the annual stockholders' meeting must be passed by more than four-fifths of VW shareholders--a requirement that gave Lower Saxony the ability to block any such measures as it saw fit.

In March of that year, fellow German automaker Porsche announced that it had raised its stake in Volkswagen to 30.9 percent, triggering a takeover bid under a German law requiring a company to bid for the entirety of any other company after acquiring more than 30 percent of its stock. Porsche announced it did not intend to take over VW, but was buying the stock as a way of protecting it from being dismantled by hedge funds. Porsche's history was already entwined with Volkswagen, as the Austrian-born engineer Ferdinand Porsche designed the original "people's car" for Volkswagen in 1938.

On October 23, 2007, the European Court of Justice formally struck down the Volkswagen Law, ruling that its protectionism illegally restricted the free movement of capital in European markets. The decision cleared the way for Porsche to move forward with its takeover, which it did, maintaining that it will still preserve the Volkswagen corporate structure. By early 2009, Porsche owned more than 50 percent of Volkswagen shares.

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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 21, 2014 5:28:30 PM

* 1960 - The German government passes the "Law Concerning the Transfer of the Share Rights in Volkswagenwerk Limited Liability Company into Private Hands," known informally as the "Volkswagen Law."

Founded in 1937 and originally under the control of Adolf Hitler's National Socialist (Nazi) Party, Volkswagen would eventually grow into Europe's largest car manufacturer and a symbol of Germany's economic recovery after the devastation of World War II. The Volkswagen Law, passed in July 1960, changed the company to a joint stock corporation, with 20 percent held each by Germany and Lower Saxony, the region in which Volkswagen is still headquartered. By limiting the share of any other stockholder to 20 percent, regardless of how many shares owned, the law effectively protected the company from any attempt at a hostile takeover.

By 2007, the controversial legislation had come under full-blown attack from the European Commission as part of a campaign against protectionist measures in several European capitals. The commission objected not only to the 20 percent voting rights cap but to the law's stipulation that measures taken at the annual stockholders' meeting must be passed by more than four-fifths of VW shareholders--a requirement that gave Lower Saxony the ability to block any such measures as it saw fit.

In March of that year, fellow German automaker Porsche announced that it had raised its stake in Volkswagen to 30.9 percent, triggering a takeover bid under a German law requiring a company to bid for the entirety of any other company after acquiring more than 30 percent of its stock. Porsche announced it did not intend to take over VW, but was buying the stock as a way of protecting it from being dismantled by hedge funds. Porsche's history was already entwined with Volkswagen, as the Austrian-born engineer Ferdinand Porsche designed the original "people's car" for Volkswagen in 1938.

On October 23, 2007, the European Court of Justice formally struck down the Volkswagen Law, ruling that its protectionism illegally restricted the free movement of capital in European markets. The decision cleared the way for Porsche to move forward with its takeover, which it did, maintaining that it will still preserve the Volkswagen corporate structure. By early 2009, Porsche owned more than 50 percent of Volkswagen shares.

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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 21, 2014 11:54:31 AM

Jul 21, 1973: "Soul Makossa" is the first disco record to make the Top 40.

During the pre-dawn hours of nearly any given night in the early 1970s, a group of young men who would change the face of the music industry could be found eating omelets and talking about records at a Manhattan restaurant called David's Pot Belly. The names in this rotating group of friends are unfamiliar to most: David Mancuso, David Rodriguez, Michael Cappello and Nicky Siano. They were not musicans but DJs at dance clubs like The Gallery, The Loft and Le Jardin, and through their taste in music and their obsessive search for new material, they would collectively bring a thing called "Disco" into existence. Their power to shape popular culture would first become evident on this day in 1973, when a song called "Soul Makossa" entered the Billboard Top 40 as the first-ever chart hit definitively launched by the infant disco scene.

"Soul Makossa" was a 1972 recording by the Paris-based Cameroonian artist Emmanual "Manu" Dibango, and it is now best remembered as the source of the rhythmic chant—"Mama-ko, mama-sa, maka-mako-sa"—that appears in Michael Jackson's "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin''" (1982) and Rihanna's "Don't Stop The Music" (2006). Issued on the French label Fiesta, "Soul Makossa" might never have been heard on this side of the Atlantic had David Mancuso not pulled it from a shelf in a Jamaican record shop in Brooklyn one day in the spring of 1973 and, after hearing it, immediately recognized its percussion-heavy, Afro-Latin sound and repetitive chorus as absolutely perfect for the dance floor.

While DJs like Mancuso scoured every corner of New York City for new dance records to spin, the record industry paid absolutely no attention to the club scene, never having considered that it might offer a way to "break" a new record. "Soul Makossa" would change all that. As soon as Mancuso began spinning it at The Loft, his fellow DJs had to have their own copies, and so did their fans. Rolling Stone and Billboard magazine noted that the street price of the rare import had shot through the roof in New York City as devotees of the largely black, gay and Hispanic club scene tried to get their hands on Manu Dibango's surprise hit. "People went wild trying to find that record," Nicky Siano recalled in Love Saves The Day (2003), Tim Lawrence's history of American dance culture in the 1970s. "No one had 'Soul Makossa.'"

Taking note of its underground success, Atlantic Records licensed "Soul Makossa" from Dibango's French label and released a domestic version of the single. When it entered the Top 40 on this day in 1973, it awakened the music industry to an important new cultural and commercial phenomenon, laying the groundwork for the disco explosion to come.
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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 21, 2014 3:02:16 AM

2007 – “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” was first published, selling 15 million copies within a 24 hour period.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 20, 2014 4:07:28 PM

* 1969 - At 10:56 p.m. EDT, American astronaut Neil Armstrong, 240,000 miles from Earth, speaks these words to more than a billion people listening at home: "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." Stepping off the lunar landing module Eagle, Armstrong became the first human to walk on the surface of the moon.

The American effort to send astronauts to the moon has its origins in a famous appeal President John F. Kennedy made to a special joint session of Congress on May 25, 1961: "I believe this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to Earth." At the time, the United States was still trailing the Soviet Union in space developments, and Cold War-era America welcomed Kennedy's bold proposal.

In 1966, after five years of work by an international team of scientists and engineers, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) conducted the first unmanned Apollo mission, testing the structural integrity of the proposed launch vehicle and spacecraft combination. Then, on January 27, 1967, tragedy struck at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, when a fire broke out during a manned launch-pad test of the Apollo spacecraft and Saturn rocket. Three astronauts were killed in the fire.

Despite the setback, NASA and its thousands of employees forged ahead, and in October 1968, Apollo 7, the first manned Apollo mission, orbited Earth and successfully tested many of the sophisticated systems needed to conduct a moon journey and landing. In December of the same year, Apollo 8 took three astronauts to the dark side of the moon and back, and in March 1969 Apollo 9 tested the lunar module for the first time while in Earth orbit. Then in May, the three astronauts of Apollo 10 took the first complete Apollo spacecraft around the moon in a dry run for the scheduled July landing mission.

At 9:32 a.m. on July 16, with the world watching, Apollo 11 took off from Kennedy Space Center with astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin Aldrin Jr., and Michael Collins aboard. Armstrong, a 38-year-old civilian research pilot, was the commander of the mission. After traveling 240,000 miles in 76 hours, Apollo 11 entered into a lunar orbit on July 19. The next day, at 1:46 p.m., the lunar module Eagle, manned by Armstrong and Aldrin, separated from the command module, where Collins remained. Two hours later, the Eagle began its descent to the lunar surface, and at 4:18 p.m. the craft touched down on the southwestern edge of the Sea of Tranquility. Armstrong immediately radioed to Mission Control in Houston, Texas, a famous message: "The Eagle has landed."

At 10:39 p.m., five hours ahead of the original schedule, Armstrong opened the hatch of the lunar module. As he made his way down the lunar module's ladder, a television camera attached to the craft recorded his progress and beamed the signal back to Earth, where hundreds of millions watched in great anticipation. At 10:56 p.m., Armstrong spoke his famous quote, which he later contended was slightly garbled by his microphone and meant to be "that's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind." He then planted his left foot on the gray, powdery surface, took a cautious step forward, and humanity had walked on the moon.

"Buzz" Aldrin joined him on the moon's surface at 11:11 p.m., and together they took photographs of the terrain, planted a U.S. flag, ran a few simple scientific tests, and spoke with President Richard M. Nixon via Houston. By 1:11 a.m. on July 21, both astronauts were back in the lunar module and the hatch was closed. The two men slept that night on the surface of the moon, and at 1:54 p.m. the Eagle began its ascent back to the command module. Among the items left on the surface of the moon was a plaque that read: "Here men from the planet Earth first set foot on the moon--July 1969 A.D--We came in peace for all mankind."

At 5:35 p.m., Armstrong and Aldrin successfully docked and rejoined Collins, and at 12:56 a.m. on July 22 Apollo 11 began its journey home, safely splashing down in the Pacific Ocean at 12:51 p.m. on July 24.

There would be five more successful lunar landing missions, and one unplanned lunar swing-by, Apollo 13. The last men to walk on the moon, astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt of the Apollo 17 mission, left the lunar surface on December 14, 1972. The Apollo program was a costly and labor intensive endeavor, involving an estimated 400,000 engineers, technicians, and scientists, and costing $24 billion (close to $100 billion in today's dollars). The expense was justified by Kennedy's 1961 mandate to beat the Soviets to the moon, and after the feat was accomplished ongoing missions lost their viability.

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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 20, 2014 8:42:53 AM

Jul 20, 1972: U.S. government study disputes Nader's charges against Corvair.

On this day in 1972, the results of a two-year study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Administration of the U.S. Department of Transportation are released; the study concludes that 1960-63 Chevrolet Corvair models are at least as safe as comparable models of other cars sold in the same period, directly contradicting charges made by the leading consumer advocate Ralph Nader.

In his bestselling 1965 book "Unsafe at Any Speed: The Designed-In Dangers of the American Automobile," Nader had dedicated an entire chapter, titled "The One-Car Accident," to the Corvair. Upon its debut in 1960, the Corvair won Motor Trend's "Car of the Year" honors and became an immediate sensation thanks to its innovative design and its lightweight, air-cooled, rear-mounted aluminum engine. However, its deficiencies–including its tendency to oversteer and spin out of control in the hands of the average driver–earned almost as much attention. After his niece was seriously injured in a Corvair, the general manager of General Motors himself threatened to resign if the car's suspension was not redesigned (it was, in 1964). By the time the revamped Corvair was released in 1965, Nader had already published "Unsafe at Any Speed," making 1960-63 Corvair models the target of his most outraged criticism. Sales of the Corvair swiftly dwindled, and GM withdrew the car from production in 1969.

At Nader's own urging, the U.S. government began a comparative study of the 1963 Corvair with other comparable vehicles in September 1970. The other cars used were a 1967 Corvair (featuring the newly redesigned suspension), a 1962 Ford Falcon, a 1960 Plymouth Valiant, a 1962 Volkswagen and a 1963 Renault. Nader had specifically criticized the Corvair's handling and stability, as well as its tendency to roll over during sharp turns. In the study's results, released on July 20, 1972, the government stated, among other conclusions, that the Corvair's handling in a sharp turn did not "result in abnormal potential for loss of control" and that the rollover rate for the Corvair was comparable to that of "other light domestic cars."

According to The New York Times, Nader spoke out against the study, calling it "a shoddy, internally contradictory whitewash" and accusing the Highway Traffic Administration of using "biased testing procedures and model selection." He argued against the use of only the 1963 Corvair in the tests, which he said was significantly different from the 1960-62 models–a charge that the government disputed, saying that the first significant changes to the Corvair were made in 1964. Three independent engineers certified the government's findings, calling them "reasonable, appropriate and sound," and General Motors issued a statement stating that the study "confirms our position on the handling and stability characteristics of these cars."
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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 20, 2014 3:04:13 AM

1940 – The first freeway in California opened. CA 110, formerly known as the Pasadena Freeway, is Arroyo Seco Parkway.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 19, 2014 4:29:29 PM

* 1942 - The agricultural chemist George Washington Carver, head of Alabama's famed Tuskegee Institute, arrives in Dearborn, Michigan at the invitation of Henry Ford, founder of Ford Motor Company.

Born to slave parents in Missouri during the Civil War, Carver managed to get a high school education while working as a farmhand in Kansas in his late 20s. Turned away by a Kansas university because he was an African American, Carver later became the first black student at Iowa State Agricultural College in Ames, where he obtained his bachelor's and master's degrees. In 1896, Carver left Iowa to head the department of agriculture at the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute, a school founded by the leading black educator Booker T. Washington. By convincing farmers in the South to plant peanuts as an alternative to cotton, Carver helped resuscitate the region's agriculture; in the process, he became one of the most respected and influential scientists in the country.

Like Carver, Ford was deeply interested in the regenerative properties of soil and the potential of alternative crops such as peanuts and soybeans to produce plastics, paint, fuel and other products. Ford had long believed that the world would eventually need a substitute for gasoline, and supported the production of ethanol (or grain alcohol) as an alternative fuel. In 1942, he would showcase a car with a lightweight plastic body made from soybeans. Ford and Carver began corresponding via letter in 1934, and their mutual admiration deepened after Carver made a visit to Michigan in 1937. As Douglas Brinkley writes in "Wheels for the World," his history of Ford, the automaker donated generously to the Tuskegee Institute, helping finance Carver's experiments, and Carver in turn spent a period of time helping to oversee crops at the Ford plantation in Ways, Georgia.

By the time World War II began, Ford had made repeated journeys to Tuskegee to convince Carver to come to Dearborn and help him develop a synthetic rubber to help compensate for wartime rubber shortages. Carver arrived on July 19, 1942, and set up a laboratory in an old water works building in Dearborn. He and Ford experimented with different crops, including sweet potatoes and dandelions, eventually devising a way to make the rubber substitute from goldenrod, a plant weed. Carver died in January 1943, Ford in April 1947, but the relationship between their two institutions continued to flourish: As recently as the late 1990s, Ford awarded grants of $4 million over two years to the George Washington Carver School at Tuskegee.

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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 19, 2014 10:04:20 AM

Jul 19, 1799: Rosetta Stone found.

On this day in 1799, during Napoleon Bonaparte's Egyptian campaign, a French soldier discovers a black basalt slab inscribed with ancient writing near the town of Rosetta, about 35 miles north of Alexandria. The irregularly shaped stone contained fragments of passages written in three different scripts: Greek, Egyptian hieroglyphics and Egyptian demotic. The ancient Greek on the Rosetta Stone told archaeologists that it was inscribed by priests honoring the king of Egypt, Ptolemy V, in the second century B.C. More startlingly, the Greek passage announced that the three scripts were all of identical meaning. The artifact thus held the key to solving the riddle of hieroglyphics, a written language that had been "dead" for nearly 2,000 years.

When Napoleon, an emperor known for his enlightened view of education, art and culture, invaded Egypt in 1798, he took along a group of scholars and told them to seize all important cultural artifacts for France. Pierre Bouchard, one of Napoleon's soldiers, was aware of this order when he found the basalt stone, which was almost four feet long and two-and-a-half feet wide, at a fort near Rosetta. When the British defeated Napoleon in 1801, they took possession of the Rosetta Stone.

Several scholars, including Englishman Thomas Young made progress with the initial hieroglyphics analysis of the Rosetta Stone. French Egyptologist Jean-Francois Champollion (1790-1832), who had taught himself ancient languages, ultimately cracked the code and deciphered the hieroglyphics using his knowledge of Greek as a guide. Hieroglyphics used pictures to represent objects, sounds and groups of sounds. Once the Rosetta Stone inscriptions were translated, the language and culture of ancient Egypt was suddenly open to scientists as never before.

The Rosetta Stone has been housed at the British Museum in London since 1802, except for a brief period during World War I. At that time, museum officials moved it to a separate underground location, along with other irreplaceable items from the museum's collection, to protect it from the threat of bombs.
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ncclyde
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Message Posted: Jul 19, 2014 8:03:18 AM

Birthday of both Samuel Colt (1814) and Gaston Glock (1929)
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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 19, 2014 3:07:27 AM

1961 – The Movie, By Love Possessed, was the first featured film shown on a commercial regular scheduled flight on TWA from New York to Los Angeles. It was shown on the Boeing 707 for the First Class Cabin Passengers.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 18, 2014 5:31:12 PM

* 64 - A fire erupts in Rome, spreading rapidly throughout the market area in the center of the city. When the flames finally died out more than a week later, nearly two-thirds of Rome had been destroyed.

Emperor Nero used the fire as an opportunity to rebuild Rome in a more orderly Greek style and began construction on a massive palace called the Domus Aureus. Some speculated that the emperor had ordered the burning of Rome to indulge his architectural tastes, but he was away in Antium when the conflagration began. According to later Roman historians, Nero blamed members of the mysterious Christian cult for the fire and launched the first Roman persecution of Christians in response
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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 18, 2014 10:09:59 AM

Jul 18, 1999: David Cone pitches perfect game.

On July 18, 1999, New York Yankee David Cone pitches the 16th perfect game in major league history and 14th in the modern era with a no-hit, no-walk victory over the Montreal Expos.

David Cone had made his name as a pitcher with the New York Mets from 1987 to 1992. His best year was 1988, when he finished with 20 win to just three losses and a 2.22 ERA in 231 1/3 innings. Four years later, he was traded to Toronto, where he helped the Blue Jays win the World Series. During the off-season, he signed with the Kansas City Royals, with whom he cruised to a 16-5 record and a 2.94 ERA and won the American League Cy Young Award in the strike-shortened 1994 season. In 1995, the journeyman Cone again switched teams, this time joining the New York Yankees. He helped the Yankees to World Series wins in 1996 and 1998, cementing his status as a clutch big-game pitcher.

In 1998, Cone won 20 games and lost just seven with a 3.55 ERA. The 1999 Yankees could not match the previous season’s heroics, but on July 18, Cone put on a show for the fans in Yankee Stadium. It was Yogi Berra Day, and Yankee great Don Larsen--who wowed fans with a perfect game in the 1956 World Series--was in the stands. Despite the 98-degree heat, Cone needed only 88 pitches, 68 of them strikes, to set down 27 Expos in a row. The speed of his fastball increased throughout the game, and his slider darted in and out of the strike zone, confounding the Expos. With two outs in the ninth inning, Expo shortstop Orlando Cabrera hit a pop-up that was easily caught by third baseman Scott Brosius for the last out. Cone dropped to his knees, dumbfounded, before being bear-hugged by his catcher, Joe Girardi, and carried off the field by his teammates.

Cone hung on with the Yankees for two more seasons, helping them to two more World Series wins, in 1999 and 2000.
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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 18, 2014 3:08:59 AM

In 1984, James Oliver Huberty opened fire at McDonald’s in San Ysidro, California, killing 21 people and injuring 19 before being shot dead by Police.
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cgstach
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Message Posted: Jul 17, 2014 8:05:36 PM

* 1955 - Disneyland, Walt Disney's metropolis of nostalgia, fantasy, and futurism, opens on July 17, 1955. The $17 million theme park was built on 160 acres of former orange groves in Anaheim, California, and soon brought in staggering profits. Today, Disneyland hosts more than 14 million visitors a year, who spend close to $3 billion.

Walt Disney, born in Chicago in 1901, worked as a commercial artist before setting up a small studio in Los Angeles to produce animated cartoons. In 1928, his short film Steamboat Willy, starring the character "Mickey Mouse," was a national sensation. It was the first animated film to use sound, and Disney provided the voice for Mickey. From there on, Disney cartoons were in heavy demand, but the company struggled financially because of Disney's insistence on ever-improving artistic and technical quality. His first feature-length cartoon, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1938), took three years to complete and was a great commercial success.

Snow White was followed by other feature-length classics for children, such as Pinocchio (1940), Dumbo (1941), and Bambi (1942). Fantasia (1940), which coordinated animated segments with famous classical music pieces, was an artistic and technical achievement. In Song of the South (1946), Disney combined live actors with animated figures, and beginning with Treasure Island in 1950 the company added live-action movies to its repertoire. Disney was also one of the first movie studios to produce film directly for television, and its Zorro and Davy Crockett series were very popular with children.

In the early 1950s, Walt Disney began designing a huge amusement park to be built near Los Angeles. He intended Disneyland to have educational as well as amusement value and to entertain adults and their children. Land was bought in the farming community of Anaheim, about 25 miles southeast of Los Angeles, and construction began in 1954. In the summer of 1955, special invitations were sent out for the opening of Disneyland on July 17. Unfortunately, the pass was counterfeited and thousands of uninvited people were admitted into Disneyland on opening day. The park was not ready for the public: food and drink ran out, a women's high-heel shoe got stuck in the wet asphalt of Main Street USA, and the Mark Twain Steamboat nearly capsized from too many passengers.

Disneyland soon recovered, however, and attractions such as the Castle, Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, Snow White's Adventures, Space Station X-1, Jungle Cruise, and Stage Coach drew countless children and their parents. Special events and the continual building of new state-of-the-art attractions encouraged them to visit again. In 1965, work began on an even bigger Disney theme park and resort near Orlando, Florida. Walt Disney died in 1966, and Walt Disney World was opened in his honor on October 1, 1971. Epcot Center, Disney-MGM Studios, and Animal Kingdom were later added to Walt Disney World, and it remains Florida's premier tourist attraction. In 1983, Disneyland Tokyo opened in Japan, and in 1992 Disneyland Paris--or "EuroDisney"--opened to a mixed reaction in Marne-la-Vallee. The newest Disneyland, in Hong Kong, opened its doors in September 2005.

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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 17, 2014 2:29:33 PM

Jul 17, 1941: Joe DiMaggio ends 56-game hitting streak.

On this day in 1941, New York Yankees center fielder Joe DiMaggio fails to get a hit against the Cleveland Indians, which brings his historic 56-game hitting streak to an end. The record run had captivated the country for two months.

Joseph Paul DiMaggio was born November 25, 1914, in Martinez, California. In 1891, his father Giuseppe had emigrated from Sicily to the Bay Area, where he made his living as a fisherman (he was later made legendary by Ernest Hemingway’s 1952 novel The Old Man and the Sea.) The DiMaggio family moved to San Francisco’s Italian-dominated North Beach neighborhood the year Joe was born. Joe was the eighth of nine children, the fourth of five boys, two of whom--his older brother Vince and younger brother Dominic--joined him in the major leagues. His two brothers had successful major league careers, but "Joltin’ Joe," arguably the best player of his generation, and one of the greatest of all time, was a phenomenon.

In 1941, DiMaggio was in his sixth season as center fielder for the New York Yankees. He had already helped lead the team to the American League pennant and World Series wins alongside first baseman Lou Gehrig in 1936, ’37 and ’38. In 1939, Gehrig fell ill with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, later known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, and DiMaggio picked up the slack. That year, he led the American League with a .381 batting average and helped the Yankees to their fourth championship in a row; they were the first major league team ever to four-peat. In 1940, DiMaggio led the American League in hitting again at .352, but the Yankees finished two games behind Hank Greenberg’s Detroit Tigers.

On May 15, 1941, DiMaggio began his record-breaking streak against the White Sox in Yankee Stadium with a single and an RBI. As the streak continued, fans across the nation took notice. DiMaggio broke George Sisler’s American League record of 41 consecutive games with a hit on June 29 at Griffith Stadium in Washington, and four days later, on July 2, DiMaggio broke "Wee" Willie Keeler’s major league record streak of 44 games. As the nation followed DiMaggio’s progress and he continued to hit in game after game, the Les Brown Orchestra scored a hit with the popular tune "Joltin’ Joe DiMaggio."

Finally, on July 17 in Cleveland, in a night game in front of 67,468 fans, DiMaggio went hitless against Cleveland pitchers Al Smith and Jim Bagby, Jr. In his first three at-bats, DiMaggio grounded out to third twice against Smith, both on hard-hit balls, and then walked. With Bagby pitching in the eighth inning, DiMaggio hit into a double play, ending a Yankee rally and the greatest hitting streak in major league history. DiMaggio confided to a teammate after the game that by failing to get a hit he had also lost the $10,000 promised to him by Heinz ketchup for matching the number "57" featured on their labels.

DiMaggio won the 1941 American League MVP over Red Sox slugger Ted Williams in spite of the latter’s .406 batting average that season, the last time any major league player hit over .400. DiMaggio retired after the 1951 season after 13 seasons with the Yankees that included 11 pennants and 10 World Series wins. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1955.
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lvskyguy
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Message Posted: Jul 17, 2014 3:04:12 AM

1867 – The Harvard School of Dental Medicine was established. It was the first dental school in the U.S. that was affiliated with a university.
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leemun
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Message Posted: Jul 17, 2014 2:27:17 AM

1762 - Catherine II becomes tsar of Russia.
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Joisygal
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Message Posted: Jul 16, 2014 11:52:48 PM

Ginger Rogers (1911): Dancer who became a part of the vaudeville circuit after winning a "Charleston" contest in Texas. In 1929, Rogers was cast in the Broadway Musical, "Top Speed," and joined the cast of "Girl Crazy" in 1930. In 1933, Rogers appeared in the Warner Bros. films 42nd Street and Gold Diggers of 1933, and began her legendary dance partnership with Fred Astaire after joining RKO later that same year. Some of Rogers’ most memorable performances with Fred Astaire can be seen in Roberta (1935), Follow the Fleet (1936), Top Hat (1935) and Swing Time (1936). Rogers went solo again in the late 1930s, and turned in an Oscar-winning performance in the 1940 film, Kitty Foyle. In 1992, Rogers was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Kennedy Center. Rogers passed away in 1995.
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rjojo40AL
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Message Posted: Jul 16, 2014 10:13:26 AM

Jul 16, 1999: JFK Jr killed in a plane crash.

On July 16, 1999, John F. Kennedy, Jr.; his wife, Carolyn Bessette Kennedy; and her sister, Lauren Bessette, die when the single-engine plane that Kennedy was piloting crashes into the Atlantic Ocean near Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, Jr., was born on November 25, 1960, just a few weeks after his father and namesake was elected the 35th president of the United States. On his third birthday, "John-John" attended the funeral of his assassinated father and was photographed saluting his father's coffin in a famous and searing image. Along with his sister, Caroline, he was raised in Manhattan by his mother, Jacqueline. After graduating from Brown University and a very brief acting stint, he attended New York University Law School. He passed the bar on his third try and worked in New York as an assistant district attorney, winning all six of his cases. In 1995, he founded the political magazine George, which grew to have a circulation of more than 400,000. Unlike many others in his famous family, he never sought public office himself.

Always in the media spotlight, he was celebrated for the good looks that he inherited from his parents. In 1988, he was named the "Sexiest Man Alive" by People magazine. He was linked romantically with several celebrities, including the actress Daryl Hannah, whom he dated for five years. In September 1996, he married girlfriend Carolyn Bessette, a fashion publicist. The two shared an apartment in New York City, where Kennedy was often seen inline skating in public. Known for his adventurous nature, he nonetheless took pains to separate himself from the more self-destructive behavior of some of the other men in the Kennedy clan.

On July 16, 1999, however, with about 300 hours of flying experience, Kennedy took off from Essex County airport in New Jersey and flew his single-engine plane into a hazy, moonless night. He had turned down an offer by one of his flight instructors to accompany him, saying he "wanted to do it alone." To reach his destination of Martha's Vineyard, he would have to fly 200 miles--the final phase over a dark, hazy ocean--and inexperienced pilots can lose sight of the horizon under such conditions. Unable to see shore lights or other landmarks, Kennedy would have to depend on his instruments, but he had not qualified for a license to fly with instruments only. In addition, he was recovering from a broken ankle, which might have affected his ability to pilot his plane.

At Martha's Vineyard, Kennedy was to drop off his sister-in-law Lauren Bessette, one of his two passengers. From there, Kennedy and his wife, Carolyn, were to fly on to the Kennedy compound on Cape Cod's Hyannis Port for the marriage of Rory Kennedy, the youngest child of the late Robert F. Kennedy. The Piper Saratoga aircraft never made it to Martha's Vineyard. Radar data examined later showed the plane plummeting from 2,200 feet to 1,100 feet in a span of 14 seconds, a rate far beyond the aircraft's safe maximum. It then disappeared from the radar screen.

Kennedy's plane was reported missing by friends and family members, and an intensive rescue operation was launched by the Coast Guard, the navy, the air force, and civilians. After two days of searching, the thousands of people involved gave up hope of finding survivors and turned their efforts to recovering the wreckage of the aircraft and the bodies. Americans mourned the loss of the "crown prince" of one of the country's most admired families, a sadness that was especially poignant given the relentless string of tragedies that have haunted the Kennedy family over the years.

On July 21, navy divers recovered the bodies of JFK Jr., his wife, and sister-in-law from the wreckage of the plane, which was lying under 116 feet of water about eight miles off the Vineyard's shores. The next day, the cremated remains of the three were buried at sea during a ceremony on the USS Briscoe, a navy destroyer. A private mass for JFK Jr. and Carolyn was held on July 23 at the Church of St. Thomas More in Manhattan, where the late Jackie Kennedy Onassis worshipped. President Bill Clinton and his wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton, were among the 300 invited guests. The Kennedy family's surviving patriarch, Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts, delivered a moving eulogy: "From the first day of his life, John seemed to belong not only to our family, but to the American family. He had a legacy, and he learned to treasure it. He was part of a legend, and he learned to live with it."

Investigators studying the wreckage of the Piper Saratoga found no problems with its mechanical or navigational systems. In their final report released in 2000, the National Transportation Safety Board concluded that the crash was caused by an inexperienced pilot who became disoriented in the dark and lost control.

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