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Events, deathsbirths, of AUG 11

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Jessica CortezOn an 11 August:
2002 US Airways Group Inc. files for Chapter 11 protection in US Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in Alexandria, listing assets of $7.81 billion and liabilities of $7.83 billion. It is the sixth largest US airline, with 35'000 employees and plans to continue service to the more than 200 communities in its network, while it restructures.
2002 Jessica Cortez, 4 [photo >], is abducted from Echo Park in Los Angeles before 19:30, when her parents, Rafael Cortez and María Hernández, selling tacos from a stand across the street, notice that she is missing. An intensive search for her has no success. But on 13 August 2002, she is recognized (from the photos shown on TV) by the staff of the free clinic St. John Well Child Center, when well dressed Patricia Cornejo, 34, shortly after 17:00, brings Jessica, who had complained of a sore throat, for a check-up, giving the name María Ortiz for the child, who is dirty, barefoot, wearing different clothes than those she had when abducted, and has her hair jaggedly cut short. While the woman goes to the bathroom, the staff question the child, who tells them that her name is Jessica and that the woman is not her mom. Cornejo is arrested. Her motives are not clear. She has four children. Two of them, age 4 and 10, are placed in protective custody and two older children are with Cornejo’s mother.
2000 Lech Walesa, 56, who led the Solidarnosc union toppling Communism in Poland, was not "agent Bolek" of the Kremlin-puppet Communist Polish secret police, a Polish court rules, after even the prosecutor agrees that the allegations were based on documents forged by that same former secret police. The Polish law provides no penalty for telling the truth about one's Communist past, but liars are barred from public office for 10 years.
2000 Coco the parrot gets a ticket from a traffic cop in Patras, Greece, for obstructing the pavement with his stand outside a pet shop. The shopkeeper complained that the policeman had not ticketed nearby illegally parked cars, but was told that he had only been assigned to get the bird. The owner was shown on TV handing the ticket to the parrot, who tore it up.
2000 Pat Buchanan won the Reform Party presidential nomination in a victory bitterly disputed by party founder Ross Perot's supporters, who chose their own nominee, John Hagelin, in a rival convention. This is the last news of any significance about the Reform Party, now irrelevant, in the 2000 election or later.
1999 Chechnya war: Shamil Basayev claims leadership of the troops in Dagestan, ends uncertainty over who commands the rebel units. Basayev vows to expel "infidels" from north Caucasus. Islamic insurgents claim to have captured several Dagestani villages. Russian forces use helicopter gunships to counter the latest offensive, suffering ten casualties.
1998 Jonesboro schoolyard shooters guilty      ^top^
      In Jonesboro, Arkansas, Mitchell Johnson pleads guilty to the Jonesboro schoolyard massacre on his fourteenth birthday, and Andrew Golden, 12, is convicted. Both boys had been charged with five counts of murder and ten counts of battery for the March 24 shooting that left four schoolmates and a teacher dead, and ten others wounded. Juvenile Court Judge Ralph Wilson Jr., sentences them to the maximum penalty allowed by law — confinement to a juvenile center; perhaps until they turned twenty-one. The judge, who declared during sentencing that "here the punishment will not fit the crime," had rejected a plea of temporary insanity made by Golden.
      During the trial, prosecutors had recounted step-by-step how on March 24 the boys took a van from Mitchell's home, guns from Andrew's grandfather's house, and then went to the Westside Middle School dressed in camouflage. Andrew pulled a fire alarm in the school to flush classmates and teachers outside, and then ran to a patch of woods seventy-five yards away where he met Mitchell. As the students and teachers filed out, the boys opened fire. After the massacre, they fled into the woods toward their van, but were captured by police before they could escape.
      By Arkansas law at the time, juvenile offenders could not be held in adult prisons and thus were traditionally released on their eighteenth birthday. In addition, unlike convicted adults, juvenile offenders were also allowed to own guns after being paroled. After the Jonesboro sentencing, Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee stated he would build a new prison or modify an existing one to hold Andrew and Mitchell as long as possible. The Jonesboro massacre was the worst in a series of deadly school shootings that occurred between October 1997 and 1998. And then, on April 20, 1999, a murderous rampage by two students at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, would leave thirteen dead and twenty-three injured.
1997 Huge write-off of HarperCollins earnings      ^top^
     Struggling publishing giant HarperCollins announces that it will write off some 35 percent of its value — $270 million — as a move to dissuade its parent company, News Corp., from putting it on the selling block. News Corp., Rupert Murdoch’s global media behemoth, in turn announces that rather than sell HarperCollins, it intends to use the money to revamp the company. The $270 million charge against earnings is one of the largest write-offs in industry history.
1997 Confetti and Amscam Holdings merge. Merger between Amscam Holdings Inc., a New Jersey-based plastic and paper party goods company, and Confetti, an affiliate of Goldman, Sachs and Co. The agreement, worth roughly $315 million, gave a nearly four point boost to Amscam’s stock on the NASDAQ market.
1997 US President Clinton made the first use of the historic line-item veto approved by Congress, rejecting three items in spending and tax bills.
1996: The Reform Party opened the first part of its two-stage convention in Long Beach, Calif., with Ross Perot and Richard Lamm battling for the presidential nomination.
1994 The Russian Supreme Court acquits General Valentin Varennikov of high treason for his participation in the failed August 1991 coup against Mikhail Gorbachev.
1993 President Clinton named Army Gen. John Shalikashvili to be the new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, succeeding General Colin Powell.
1990 Egypt and Morocco troops land in Saudi Arabia to prevent Iraqi invasion
1989 Voyager 2 discovers 2 partial rings of Neptune
1988 Meir Kahane renounced US citizenship to stay in Israeli Parliament
1984 Reagan jokes about "outlawing" the Soviet Union      ^top^
      A joke about "outlawing" the Soviet Union by President Ronald Reagan turns into an international embarrassment. The president's flippant remarks caused consternation among America's allies and provided grist for the Soviet propaganda mill. As he prepared for his weekly radio address on 11 August 1984, President Reagan was asked to make a voice check. Reagan obliged, declaring, "My fellow Americans, I'm pleased to tell you today that I've signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. We begin bombing in five minutes." Since the voice check was not actually broadcast, it was not until after he delivered his radio address that news of his "joke" began to leak out.
      In Paris, a leading newspaper expressed its dismay, and stated that only trained psychologists could know whether Reagan's remarks were "a statement of repressed desire or the exorcism of a dreaded phantom." A Dutch news service remarked, "Hopefully, the man tests his missiles more carefully." Other foreign newspapers and news services called Reagan "an irresponsible old man," and declared that his comments were "totally unbecoming" for a man in his position. In the Soviet Union, commentators had a field day with Reagan's joke. One stated, "It is said that a person's level of humor reflects the level of his thinking. If so, aren't one and the other too low for the president of a great country?" Another said, "We would not be wasting time on this unfortunate joke if it did not reflect once again the fixed idea that haunts the master of the White House."
      Reagan's tasteless joke provided additional ammunition for commentators at home and abroad who believed that the anticommunist crusader was a reckless "cowboy" intent on provoking a conflict with the Soviet Union. Ironically, the man who also referred to Russia as an "evil empire" went on to establish a close personal relationship with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev after the latter came to power in 1985. The two men later signed the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty in 1987, which eliminated an entire class of nuclear weapons.
1979 -2ºC in Embarrass, Minnesota
1975 US vetoes proposed admission of North and South Vietnam to UN
1972 Vietnam: US troops are out of there.      ^top^
      Last US ground combat unit departs South Vietnam The last US ground combat unit in South Vietnam, the Third Battalion, Twenty-First Infantry, departs for the United States. The unit had been guarding the US air base at Da Nang. This left only 43'500 advisors, airmen, and support troops left in-country. This number did not include the sailors of the Seventh Fleet on station in the South China Sea or the air force personnel in Thailand and Guam. —
1970 Vietnam: South Vietnamese troops guard border.      ^top^
      South Vietnamese troops assume responsibility for guarding border As part of the Vietnamization effort, South Vietnamese troops relieve US units of their responsibility for guarding the Cambodian and Laotian borders along almost the entire South Vietnamese frontier. Nixon's strategy in Vietnam was to improve the fighting capability of the South Vietnamese forces so that they could assume the responsibility for the war and, allowing for the withdrawal of US forces. The assumption of the responsibility for the border areas was significant because those areas had previously required the presence of large US combat formations.
1967 Vietnam: US bombs Hanoi, Haiphong.      ^top^
      For the first time, US pilots are authorized to bomb road and rail links in the Hanoi-Haiphong area, formerly on the prohibited target list. This permitted US aircraft to bomb targets within 25 miles of the Chinese border and to engage other targets with rockets and cannon within 10 miles of the border. The original restrictions had been imposed because of Johnson's fear of a confrontation with China and a possible expansion of the war.
1965 Watts riot begins      ^top^
      In the Watts section of Los Angeles, California, racial tension in the city reached a breaking point after police brutally beat an African-American motorist suspected of drunken driving. Widespread rioting, arson, and looting rapidly spread across south-central Los Angeles, and police were unable to suppress the rioters. Finally, with the assistance of 20'000 National Guardsmen, order was restored on 16 August. The five days of violence had left thirty-four dead, 857 injured, over 2200 arrested, and property valued at $200 million destroyed. The Watts riot was the worst race riot in America to that date, but only two years later would be superseded
1964 Race riot in Paterson NJ
1960 Chad declares independence
1954 Peace takes place, ending 7+ yrs of fighting in Indochina between French and Communist Vietminh
1952 Hussein succeeds to Jordanian throne      ^top^
      Prince Hussein is proclaimed the king of Jordan after his father, King Talal, is declared unfit to rule by the Jordanian Parliament on grounds of mental illness. Hussein was formally crowned on 14 November 1953, his 18th birthday. Hussein was the third constitutional king of Jordan and a member of the Hashemite dynasty, said to be in direct line of descent from the Prophet Muhammad. During his nearly five decades of rule, he maintained good relations with the West and steadily developed Jordan's economy. He fought against Israel in 1967's Six-Day War and later against Palestinian guerrillas who tried to seize control of the Jordanian state. He opposed the Persian Gulf War of 1991 but supported the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. He died in 1999 and was succeeded by his eldest son, Prince Abdallah. He was the 20th century's longest-serving executive head of state.
1949 All birth registers of Polish parishes are confiscated by the Communist government.
1945 Allies refuse Japan's surrender offer conditioned on retaining Emperor Hirohito
1944 German troops abandon Florence, Italy, as Allied troops close in on the historic city.
1943 Germans begin to evacuate Sicily      ^top^
      German forces begin a six-day evacuation of the Italian island of Sicily, having been beaten back by the Allies, who invaded the island in July. The Germans had maintained a presence in Sicily since the earliest days of the war. But with the arrival of General George S. Patton and his 7th Army and General Bernard Montgomery and his 8th Army, the Germans could no longer hold their position. The race began for the Strait of Messina, the 3-km wide body of water that separates Sicily from the Italian mainland. The Germans needed to get out of Sicily and onto the Italian peninsula.
      While Patton had already reached his goal, Palermo, the Sicilian capital, on 22 July (to a hero's welcome, as the Sicilian people were more than happy to see an end to fascist rule), Montgomery, determined to head off the Germans at Messina, didn't make his goal in time. The German 29th Panzergrenadier Division and the 14th Panzer Corps were brought over from Africa for the sole purpose of slowing the Allies' progress and allowing the bulk of the German forces to get off the island. The delaying tactic succeeded.
      Despite the heavy bombing of railways leading to Messina, the Germans make it to the strait on 11 August. Over six days and seven nights, the Germans would move 39'569 soldiers, 47 tanks, 94 heavy guns, 9605 vehicles, and more than 2000 tons of ammunition onto the Italian mainland. (Not to mention the 60'000 Italian soldiers also evacuated, in order to elude capture by the Allies.) Although the United States and Britain had succeeded in conquering Sicily, the Germans were now reinforced and heavily supplied, making the race for Rome more problematic.
1942 The German submarine U-73 attacks a Malta-bound British convoy and sinks HMS Eagle, one of the world's first aircraft carriers.
1942 During World War II, Vichy government official Pierre Laval publicly declared that "the hour of liberation for France is the hour when Germany wins the war."
1941 Soviet bombers raid Berlin but cause little damage.
1934 First civilian prisoners land on Alcatraz      ^top^
      A group of federal prisoners classified as "most dangerous" arrives at Alcatraz Island, a nine-hectare rock outcropping located 2.4 km offshore in San Francisco Bay. The convicts, who were transferred from McNeil Island Prison in Washington, join a handful of military prisoners left over from the island's days as a US Army prison.
     Alcatraz was an uninhabited seabird haven when it was explored by Spanish Lieutenant Juan Manuel de Ayala in 1775. He named it Isla de los Alcatraces, or "Island of the Pelicans." Fortified by the Spanish, Alcatraz was sold to the United States in 1849. In 1854, it had the distinction of housing the first lighthouse on the coast of California. Beginning in 1859, a US Army detachment was garrisoned there, and from 1868 Alcatraz was used to house military criminals. In addition to recalcitrant US soldiers, prisoners included rebellious Indian scouts, American soldiers fighting in the Philippines who had deserted to the Filipino cause, and Chinese civilians who resisted the US Army during the Boxer Rebellion.
      In 1907, Alcatraz was designated the Pacific Branch of the United States Military Prison. In 1934, Alcatraz was fortified into a high-security federal penitentiary designed to hold the most dangerous prisoners in the US penal system, especially those with a penchant for escape attempts. The first shipment of civilian prisoners arrives on 11 August 1934. Later that month, more shiploads arrived, featuring, among other convicts, infamous mobster Al Capone. In September, George "Machine Gun" Kelly, another luminary of organized crime, landed on Alcatraz.
      In the 1940s, a famous Alcatraz prisoner was Richard Stroud, the "Birdman of Alcatraz." A convicted murderer, Stroud wrote an important study on birds while being held in solitary confinement in Leavenworth Prison in Kansas. Regarded as extremely dangerous because of his 1916 murder of a guard at Leavenworth, he was transferred to Alcatraz in 1942. Stroud was not allowed to continue his avian research at Alcatraz.
      Although some three dozen attempted, no prisoner was known to have successfully escaped "The Rock." However, the bodies of several escapees believed drowned in the treacherous waters of San Francisco Bay were never found. The story of the 1962 escape of three of these men, Frank Morris and brothers John and Clarence Anglin, inspired the 1979 film Escape from Alcatraz. Another prisoner, John Giles, caught a boat ride to the shore in 1945 dressed in an army uniform he had stolen piece by piece, but he was questioned by a suspicious officer after disembarking and sent back to Alcatraz. Only one man, John Paul Scott, was recorded to have reached the mainland by swimming, but he came ashore exhausted and hypothermic at the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge. Police found him lying unconscious and in a state of shock.
      In 1963, US Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy ordered Alcatraz closed, citing the high expense of its maintenance. In its 29-year run, Alcatraz housed more than 1500 convicts. In March 1964 a group of Sioux Indians briefly occupied the island, citing an 1868 treaty with the Sioux allowing Indians to claim any "unoccupied government land." In November 1969, a group of nearly 100 Indian students and activists began a more prolonged occupation of the island, remaining there until they were forced off by federal marshals in June 1971. In 1972, Alcatraz was opened to the public as part of the newly created Golden Gate National Recreation Area, which is maintained by the National Park Service. Alcatraz Island and the former prison are open to the public, and more than a million tourists visit each year.
1933 Temperature reaches 58ºC at San Luis Potosí, Mexico (world record)
1918 Battle of Amiens ends in WW I, Allieds beat Germans
1916 The Russia army takes Stanislau, Poland, from the Germans.
1915 German WWI air ace Immelmann, at the front, writes in a letter to his family: "There is not much doing here. Ten minutes after Bolcke and I go up, there is not an enemy airman to be seen. The English seem to have lost all pleasure in flying. They come over very, very seldom." He would have shot dows close to 100 Allied planes before he was killed in action in June 1916.
1914 Jews are expelled from Mitchenick Poland
1912 Moroccan Sultan Mulai Hafid abdicates his thrown in the face of internal dissent.
1909 The S.O.S distress signal is first used by a US ship, the Arapahoe, off Cape Hatteras, N.C.
1908 Britain's King Edward VII meets with Kaiser Wilhelm II to protest the growth of the German navy.
1906 In France, Eugene Lauste receives the first patent for a talking film.
1904 German General Lothar von Trotha defeats the Hereros tribe near Waterberg, South Africa.
1884 The government of Japan disestablishes national religion with promises of toleration.
1877 Asaph Hall discovers Mars's outer satellite Deimos
1866 World's first roller rink opens (Newport, RI)
1864 Confederates abandon Winchester, Virginia.      ^top^
      Confederate General Jubal Early pulls out of Winchester, Virginia, as Union General Philip Sheridan approaches the city. Wary of his new foe, Early moved away to avoid an immediate conflict. Since June, Early and his 14'000 soldiers had been campaigning in the Shenandoah Valley and the surrounding area. He had been sent there by General Robert E. Lee, whose Army of Northern Virginia was pinned near Richmond by the army of Union General Ulysses S. Grant. Early's expedition was intended to distract Grant, and he carried out his mission well. In July, Early moved down the Shenandoah Valley to the Potomac River, brushing aside two Federal forces before arriving on the outskirts of Washington. Grant dispatched troops from his army to drive Early away, but Early simply returned to the Shenandoah and continued to operate with impunity. Now Grant sent General Philip Sheridan to deal with Early.
      Sheridan had been appointed on 01 August to command the Army of the Shenandoah, and he was quick to take action when he arrived on the scene. On 10 August, he marched his force toward Winchester. Early was alarmed, and pulled out of the city on 11 August to a more defensible position 30 km south of Winchester. Sheridan followed with his force, settling his troops along Cedar Creek—just north of Strasburg, Virginia. As ordered by Grant, Sheridan stopped to await reinforcements. His army, consisting of both infantry and cavalry, would eventually total about 37'000 soldiers. Sheridan waited for a few days, but Confederate raider John Mosby and his Rangers burned a large store of Sheridan's supplies. Alarmed and nearly out of food, Sheridan pulled back on 16 August. This retreat was reminiscent of many Union operations in Virginia during the war. Early and others thought Sheridan was as timid and uncertain as other Federal commanders. That opinion changed little in the next month as Sheridan continued to wait and gather his force. However, Sheridan would later prove he was very different from previous Yankee leaders. In September, he began a campaign that drove the Confederates from the valley and then rendered the area useless to the Southern cause by destroying all the crops and supplies.
1863 Siege of Fort Wagner, Charleston Harbor, South Carolina continues
1862 President Abraham Lincoln appoints Union General Henry Halleck as general in chief of the Union Army.
1862 Confederate partisans capture Independence, Missouri
1860 The US's first successful silver mill began operation near Virginia City, Nevada.
1806 Meriwether Lewis is mistaken for an elk and shot in the leg      ^top^
      While hunting for elk along the Missouri River, Meriwether Lewis is shot in the hip, probably by one of his own men. Meriwether Lewis and William Clark had embarked on their epic journey to the Pacific two years earlier. The 33 members of the Corps of Discovery had experienced many adventures and narrowly escaped disaster on several occasions, but they had lost only one man (Sergeant Floyd, a probable victim of appendicitis) and suffered relatively few serious injuries. Now, at last, they were returning home; St. Louis was scarcely a month away. A few weeks earlier, Lewis and Clark had divided the party in order to explore additional new territory. The two groups were supposed to reunite at the junction of the Missouri and Yellowstone rivers. Lewis, traveling with nine men, hurried down the Missouri, eager to be reunited with Clark and the main body of the expedition. However, he periodically had to take time to stop and hunt for game to feed the hardworking men.
      On the morning of this day, Lewis spotted some elk on a bar in the river thickly overgrown with willows. He put to shore and set out to hunt accompanied by Private Cruzatte. Spotting an elk, Lewis was just about to fire his rifle when he was hit in the buttocks by a bullet. The blow spun him around and slashed a three-inch gash in his hip. Knowing that Cruzatte was blind in one eye and nearsighted in the other, Lewis immediately assumed the private had mistaken him for an elk. "Damn you," Lewis cried. "You have shot me." When Cruzatte did not respond, Lewis feared Indians might have attacked him. Rushing back to the boat, he rallied the men and sent them off to save Cruzatte. Twenty minutes later, the men returned with Cruzatte. They had seen no Indians, and Cruzatte denied having shot Lewis and claimed he had not heard his shouts. For the rest of his days, Cruzatte insisted he had not shot his captain. Lewis, however, had the offending bullet: A .54 caliber slug from a modern US Army rifle. Lewis was shot by a gun identical to the one carried by Cruzatte, and one unlikely to be in the hands of any Indian. The near-sighted Cruzatte probably mistook the leather-clad Lewis for an elk, though it is unlikely the private's guilt will ever be proven with absolute certainty. His wound was not serious, but Lewis spent the next several days lying faced down in the bottom of a canoe as the party proceeded down river. The following day, they caught up with Clark. By the time they reached St. Louis on September 23, Lewis' wound had healed and the excitement of homecoming overshadowed the event.
1792 A revolutionary commune is formed in Paris, France.
1776 Louis XVI laisse rétablir la corvée.      ^top^
      Au début de l'année Jacques Turgot, 48 ans, alors Contrôleur Général des Finances, avait demandé au Conseil l'abolition de la corvée royale des paysans, qu'il voulut remplacer par une taxe payable par tous les propriétaires terriens. Louis XVI a tenu le 12 mars à soutenir ce projet devant le Parlement de Paris, qui refusait d'enregistrer les édits : "Je vois qu'il n'y a que M. Turgot et moi qui aimions le peuple." Mais, en ce 11 août, c'est Jean-Etienne Bernard de Clugny qui, aidé par une bande d'intrigants, a évincé Turgot. Et le roi ne fait rien pour l'empêcher de revenir sur les édits de son prédécesseur. Louis XVI se souvient-il de la lettre qu'il reçut de Turgot : "N'oubliez jamais que c'est la faiblesse qui a mis la tête de Charles Ier sur un billot"? Turgot mourra le 18 mars 1781, longtemps avant que le roi perde la tête pour ne pas avoir suivi ses conseils.
     Clugny ne restera pas longtemps en fonction, d'ailleurs, les intrigants le faisant remplacer avant la fin de l'année par Jean-Gabriel Taboureau des Réaux, qui lui-même ne durera pas longtemps, car, dans les 16 ans d'être souverain qui restent à Louis XVI, il aura onze Contrôleurs des Finances (parfois sous un autre titre, tel que Directeur, Administrateur, ou Ministre), ce qui ne l'aidera aucunement à résoudre les problèmes financiers du royaume, qui, plus que n'importe quel autre facteur, entraineront sa perte. Ce sont:
     trois fois (1777, 1788, 1789) Jacques Necker, 1781 Jean-François Joly de Fleury, 1783 Henri-François de Paule Le Fèvre d'Ormesson, 1783 Charles-Alexandre de Calonne, 1787 Michel Bouvard de Fourqueux, 1787 Etienne-Charles de Loménie de Brienne, Mai 1787 Pierre-Charles Laurent de Villedeuil, deux fois (Août 1787, 1789) Claude-Guillaume Lambert, 1789 Louis Auguste Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, Joseph-François Foullon, 1790 Antoine Valdec de Lessart.
1673 Robert Barclay, Quaker, completes a Catechism and Confession of Faith, his first mature work.
1576 Sir Martin Frobischer jette l'ancre dans la baie qui porte son nom, à l'extrémité est de la terre de Baffin située entre le Labrador et le Groëland. Frobischer cherchait " le passage du Nord-Ouest " vers les Indes. Grand capitaine, il fut armé chevalier après la défaite de l'Invincible Armada à laquelle il avait contribué.
1527 The Zurich town council agrees to suppress the Anabaptists.
1492 Rodrigo Borgia is elected Pope Alexander VI.
1264 Urban IV , by the Bull Transiturus, extend the feast of Corpus Christi to the whole Church, on the Thursday following Trinity Sunday. The feast was already celebrated in the diocèse of Liège (of which the future Urban, then known as Jacques Pantaléon, was archdeacon) since 1247.
Deaths which occurred on a 11 August:      ^top^
2001 At least 91 refugees on a train in Angola which hits a mine, derails, bursting into flames, and is sprayed by gunfire.The train was carrying more than 500 refugees who were fleeing fighting that has been going on between the government and UNITA rebel forces almost continuously since Angola's 1975 independence from Portugal. It was headed from Luanda to Dondo, about 150 km southeast. 146 are wounded. More than three million people — about a quarter of Angola's population — have been driven from their homes by the civil war.
2001 At least 7 persons as school van explodes outside private school in Gujrat, Punjab, India, minutes after school let out. Three of the dead are 8 to 12 years old. Others are injured.
2000 Jonathan Burton, 19, suffocated as at least six fellow passengers on Southwest Airlines Flight 1763 were subduing him at request of the two air hostesses. About 20 minutes before the scheduled landing in Salt Lake City, Burton had started acting wildly and had already kicked partially through the cockpit door, it is not clear whether to hijack the plane or just in a rage.
2001 Carlos Hank Gonzalez. 73, of prostate cancer in Mexico, he had made himself filthy rich and influential as a corrupt PRI politico.
1995 Church, mathematician
1977 Frederick Williams, inventor of mercury tube.      ^top^
      Frederick Williams invented an early form of computer memory. An electrical engineer who had worked on code-breaking systems during World War II, Williams also made important contributions to the development of radar. In 1947, as a professor at the University of Manchester, Williams started building an experimental computer to test the feasibility of a memory system described by John Von Neumann in a report about computer memory.
      In June 1948, Williams' tiny experimental computer, which lacked a keyboard or printer, successfully tested a memory system. The system, based on a cathode-ray tube, could store programs, whereas previous computers like ENIAC had to be rewired to execute each new type of problem. Although Williams' cathode-ray memory system would soon be replaced by magnetic-core memory, the creation of a stored program computer represented a great step forward for computer science.
1965 Rioting and looting that claimed 34 lives broke out in the predominantly black Watts section of Los Angeles.
1965 Carl Mense, German artist born on 13 May 1886. — [There was a German artist named Mense, / and he was just a little bit dense: / His paints were few but his canvas immense, / and of no use except as a fence.]
1956 Jackson Pollock, in an auto accident in East Hampton. Born on 28 January 1912, Abstract Expressionist painter, proponent of Action Painting (in French “tachisme”), who in 1947 developed his trademark technique of drip painting. — MORE ON POLLOCK AT ART “4” AUGUST LINKSNumber 1aBlack YellowCathedralFlameMale FemaleMoon WomanNight MistPasiphaeSleeping 3War 2Untitled (screenprint based on painting number 7, 1951) — Untitled (1944) — Stenographic FigureNew York Blue (Moby Dick)The She~WolfEyes in the HeatThe KeyThe Tea CupShimmering SubstanceFull Fathom FiveNumber 8 (detail) — Lavender Mist: Number 1Easter and the Totem
1939 Epstein, mathematician.
1923 Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida, Spanish Realist and Impressionist painter, born on 27 February 1863. — LINKSOn the BeachChildren on the BeachThey Still Say That Fish Is Expensive!Return from Fishing Towing the BarkSeñor CrottoJosé Luis Benlliure López de AranaEl niño de la bolaGrupa valenciana
1919 Andrew Carnegie.      ^top^
     He was the man alternately known as the king of steel, architect of the second Industrial Revolution, friend of capitalism, and scourge of workers. Carnegie’s life story is a classic bit of American mythology: born in Scotland, he immigrated to America at age thirteen and started his career as a bobbin boy in a cotton factory.
      Thanks to a ferocious competitive streak, and a bit of luck — one of his farms was perched atop an oilfield — Carnegie soon left the factory floor for the boardroom. An early proponent of consolidation and vertical integration, Carnegie racked up his fortune — and effectively monopolized the steel industry — by controlling everything from raw materials to the means of production. Though he was raking in millions of dollars, Carnegie eventually heeded the urge to return to Scotland, where he embarked upon a plan to die penniless. Before contracting a fatal bout of bronchial pneumonia, Carnegie had successfully burned through a good bit of his riches, some of which he used to finance various schools and institutes.
1892 Enrico Betti, mathematician.
1889 Ferdinand Konrad Bellerman, German artist who was born on 14 March 1814.
1866 Raffaello Sernesi, in Bolzano, Italian “macchiaiolo” painter born in Florence on 29 December 1838. — MORE ON SERNESI AT ART “4” AUGUSTCupolino alle CascineMarina a Castiglionccello
1856 Four Yokut Indians, murdered in California by a band of rampaging settlers, who have heard unproven rumors of Yokut atrocities.
1868 Thaddeus Stevens , 76, architect of Radical Reconstruction
1772 Some 3000 persons killed by explosive eruption which blows 1200 m off Papandayan Java.
1691 Nicolaes van Veerandael, Flemish artist born on 19 February 1640.
1578 Nuñez, mathematician.
^ 1494 Hans Memling, Flemish Northern Renaissance painter born between 1425 and 1440.

Marriage of St Catherine
== Saint Ursula Shrine The reliquary is constructed in the shape of a traditional house or chapel with a saddle-roof. The complex tale of the Breton princess and martyr Ursula, based for the most part on the 1275 Legenda Aurea compiled by James of Voragine [1230-1298] in the passage of Volume VI entitled Here followeth the Passion of Eleven Thousand Virgins. That narrative is condensed by Memling into a mere six scenes. — St Ursula Shrine (1489, 87x33x91cm) (seen from the Saint Ursula end, and the side with scenes 1-2-3 and the 11 virgins medallion) _ Saint Ursula Shrine (seen from the Virgin and Child end, and the side with scenes 4-5-6 and the Coronation of Mary medallion) — St Ursula Shrine: Arrival in Cologne (scene 1)St Ursula Shrine: Arrival in BasleSt Ursula Shrine: Arrival in Rome (scene 3)St Ursula Shrine: Departure from Basle St Ursula Shrine: Martyrdom (scene 5)St Ursula Shrine: Martyrdom (scene 6) St Ursula Shrine: Virgin and ChildSt Ursula Shrine: St Ursula and the Holy VirginsSt Ursula Shrine: Medallions (11 virgins side) — St Ursula Shrine: Medallions (Coronation of Mary side) — St Ursula Shrine: Figures _ St James, St John the Evangelist, St Agnes and St Elizabeth of Hungary.
Passion (Greverade) Altarpiece (central panel) _ detailPassion Altarpiece (left wing) Christ Carrying the Cross. — Passion Altarpiece (right wing) the Resurrection. — Passion Altarpiece (first closed position) Saints Blasius and John the Baptist. — Passion Altarpiece (closed) Saints Jerome and Egidius.
Man of SorrowsTommaso Portinari and his WifeStanding Virgin and Child (1490, 43x36cm) _ detail (Child head and shoulders) _ Man Donor _ Woman DonorVirgin with the Child Reaching for his Toe [a copy] — TriptychPortrait of an Italian with a Roman CoinPortrait of a Praying Man
1464 Nicholas of Cusa, church diplomat and council member, mathematician who was the first to say space is curved, declaring that only so could God be equally the center of every point.
1253 Saint Clare Scifi, of Assisi, 59, follower of Saint Francis and founder of the Poor Clares. [Scifi is really her last name. She was the eldest daughter of Favorino Scifi, Count of Sasso-Rosso. So why isn't she the patroness of science-fiction?]
0991 Ealdorman Brihtnoth and others as his Saxons are defeated at Maldon by Danes under Olaf Tryggvason .
Births which occurred on an 11 August:
1996 Microsoft Internet Explorer browser      ^top^
      The hotly contested browser wars were launched on this day in 1996, when Microsoft released its Internet Explorer browser to compete with Netscape's Navigator software. To attract users, Microsoft offers free subscriptions to Web sites including ESPNET SportsZone, Hollywood Online, and The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, — all subscription sites at the time. Several days later, Netscape would announced its own new version, Navigator 3.0, with the New York Times, Times Mirror, and several magazines offering free online subscriptions to users.
1987 HyperCard multimedia software      ^top^
      Apple chairman John Sculley introduces HyperCard, the first widely used hypertext program, on this day . HyperCard became the precursor of multimedia development in the early 1990s, allowing users to link text, graphics, video, and audio data together through hyperlinks. The program gave users an unprecedented flexibility to link and organize information in an intuitive way.
1966 The Chevy Camaro      ^top^
      The first Chevy Camaro drives out of the manufacturing plant in Norwood, Ohio. The 1967 Camaro coupe was named just weeks before production; General Manager Elliot Estes, when publicly announcing the name, quipped, “I went into a closet, shut the door and came out with the name.” Camaro is actually French for “comrade, pal, or chum.” The Camaro would be a hit with the public, its base price only $2466 for a six-cylinder engine and three-speed manual transmission.
1965 The Ford Bronco, intended to compete against Jeep’s CJ-5 and International Harvester’s Scout, in the four-wheel-drive market. The first Broncos are very simple, without options such as power steering or automatic transmission. The classic Bronco would be manufactured for twelve years, with 18'000 produced in 1966 alone.
1956 Lions, mathematician
1950 Steve Wozniak      ^top^
     His garage was the birthplace of the Apple II, the machine that launched the personal computer revolution and made Apple the fastest growing company in US history. In the mid-1970s, Wozniak, who designed calculators at Hewlett-Packard, invented the Apple I as a demonstration for his friends in the Homebrew Computer Club in Silicon Valley.
      His friend Steve Jobs convinced him to build a model that could be sold in retail stores, inspiring the Apple II computer, which boasted a color video display and floppy disk drive. Wozniak was injured in a plane crash in February 1981 and suffered temporary amnesia. He was away from the company for two years, during which time he finished his bachelor's degree at Berkeley. Wozniak later left Apple and the computer industry to teach computers to fifth and sixth graders in Los Gatos, California.
1933 Jerry Falwell, US Baptist clergyman. Pastor of Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia, he has also been an active political lobbyist and once headed the Liberty Federation (formerly called Moral Majority), a Christian lobby which Falwell founded in 1979.
1930 American Lutheran Church, in Toledo, Ohio, by merger of three Lutheran synods. (In 1960 the ALC merged with two other branches of Evangelical Lutheranism, and in 1988 joined with a third Lutheran group to form the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America ELCA.)
1925 Carl Rowan (journalist: NBC News, Chicago Daily News; author: Dream Makers, Dream Breakers: The World of Justice Thurgood Marshall, Breaking Barriers, Wait Till Next Year, Go South in Sorrow, South of Freedom; director: US Information Agency; US Ambassador to Finland)
1921 Alex Haley, in Ithaca, New York.      ^top^
     He would grow up to be the author of Roots and of The Autobiography of Malcolm X. Haley was raised in Henning, Tennessee, where his maternal grandparents lived. His grandmother frequently told him stories of his family's history. He graduated from high school at 15 and enlisted in the Coast Guard in 1939. He started writing to pass the time during long months at sea. He left the Coast Guard in 1959 and began writing for magazines.
      He interviewed Malcolm X for Playboy magazine and turned his series of interviews into the basis for his first book, The Autobiography of Malcolm X. The book, published shortly after Malcolm's assassination (21 February 1965), sold 6 million copies in hardcover. Haley's next novel, Roots (1976), was a fictionalized account of his own family's history, traced through seven generations. The novel was translated into 37 languages and won a special Pulitzer Prize. The novel was turned into a 1977 miniseries that became the most-watched broadcast in TV history to that time, drawing an unprecedented 100 million viewers over eight days. Haley did not write another novel for more than 10 years. In 1988, he published A Different Kind of Christmas, about the Underground Railroad.
      In 1976, he published his best-known work, Roots: The Saga of an American Family.The blend of fact and fiction, drawn largely from stories recited by Haley's grandmother, chronicles seven generations of Haley's family history, from the enslavement of his ancestors to his own quest to trace his family tree. Roots became a TV miniseries in 1977. The eight-part series was aired on consecutive nights and became the most watched dramatic show in TV history. Some 130 million people-nearly half the country's population at the time — watched the final episode of the series.
1912 Levinson, mathematician
1895 Egon Pearson, mathematician
1892 Christopher Murray Grieve “Hugh MacDiarmid”, poet and founder of the Scottish Nationalist Party. He died on 9 September 1978
     Grieve would become, under the pseudonym MacDiarmid, a Scottish poet, editor, and critic. MacDiarmid was one of the leading—and most controversial—figures in the Scottish literary renaissance of the 1920s and '30s (see Scottish Literature). A political radical, he devoted numerous essays to the cause of Scottish culture and nationalism and was active as an editor of contemporary Scottish poetry. A proponent of the use of synthetic literary Scots (Lallans), he wrote most of his own verse in this language. Sangschaw (1925) and Penny Wheep (1926) are collections of his early shorter lyrics. A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle (1926) was a precursor of the complex intellectual poetry of his maturity. A collected edition of his verse was issued in 1962. Lucky Poet: A Self-Study in Literature and Political Ideas (1943) is his autobiography.
— MACDIARMID ONLINE: Prayer for a Second FloodThe Parrot Cry
       'Facing The Chair' 
  Here under the rays of the sun
	Where everything grows so vividly
	In the human mind and in the heart,
	Love, life, and all else so beautifully,
	I think again of men as innocent as I am
	Pent in a cold unjust walk between steel bars,
	Their trousers slit for the electrodes
	And their hair cut for the cap
	Because of the unconcern of men and women,
	Respectable and respected and professedly Christian,
	Idle-busy among the flowers of their gardens here
	Under the gay-tipped rays of the sun.
	And I am suddenly completely bereft
	Of la grande amitié des choses créées,
	The unity of life which can only be forged by love
1889 Razmadze, mathematician
1871 Clement Studebaker, Jr., in South Bend, Indiana.      ^top^
    He is born to Clement Studebaker, Sr., founder of Studebaker Brothers Manufacturing Company. The company was founded by the Studebaker brothers and became the largest producer of horse-drawn vehicles. The company began dabbling in automotive production in 1897 and soon grew to become a leader in the industry. Clement Studebaker, Jr., would eventually join the family business.
1842 D'Ovidio, mathematician
1833 Robert Green Ingersoll, advocate of scientific realism and humanistic philosophy. — INGERSOLL ONLINE: Complete worksSome Mistakes of Moses — co~author of Ingersoll the Magnificent.
1730 Bossut, mathematician.
1695 Michelangelo Unterberger, Austrian artist who died on 27 June 1758.
0843 France. Le traité de Verdun partage de l'empire entre Lothaire, Louis et Charles. On s'accorde à y voir la base juridique de l'indépendance du royaume de France et sa "naissance".
Holidays Central African Republic, Chad : Independence Day (1960) / Jordan : Coronation Day/Accession of King Hussein / Yukon : Klondike Gold Day (1896) - (Friday)

Religious Observances RC : SS Tiburtius and Susanna, martyrs / Ang, old RC, RC : St Clare, virgin, Abbess at Assisi

Thoughts for the day: “No great scoundrel is ever uninteresting.”
“No great scoundrel is ever disinterested.”
“No scoundrel is ever greatly interesting.”
“No great person is forever a scoundrel.”
“No great person is ever uninteresting to a scoundrel.”
“No great scoundrel is ever undetected.”
“No great scoundrel is ever understanding.”
“Ruin end testing is uninteresting with a d.”
“A pessimist is a man who looks both ways when he's crossing a one-way street.”
— Laurence J. Peter (1919-1990), Canadian-born educator and author of The Peter Principle. [and expects nevertheless to be killed by a crashing plane coming too fast for him to see it as he looks up also]
“An optimist is a fat ugly single woman who was barreling in a stolen car at twice the speed limit the wrong way up a one-way street, and feels certain that the derelict woman she has just hit is a disguised billionaire man who will fall in love, marry her from his hospital bed, make her his sole heir, and then die promptly.”
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