FYI April 14, 2017

April 14th is National Pecan Day

 

April 14, 2017 – NATIONAL EX-SPOUSE DAY – NATIONAL PECAN DAY – NATIONAL REACH AS HIGH AS YOU CAN DAY – NATIONAL DOLPHIN DAY – NATIONAL PAN AMERICAN DAY

 

 

 

On this day:

1561 – A Celestial phenomenon is reported over Nuremberg, described as an aerial battle.
The 1561 celestial phenomenon over Nuremberg was a mass sighting of celestial phenomena or unidentified flying objects (UFO) above Nuremberg, Germany. The phenomenon has been interpreted by some modern UFO enthusiasts as an aerial battle, possibly of extraterrestrial origin. This view is mostly dismissed by skeptics, some referencing Carl Jung’s mid-twentieth century writings about the subject while others find the phenomena is likely to be a Sun Dog.[1]

History
Around dawn on April 14, 1561, residents of Nuremberg saw what they described as an aerial battle, followed by the appearance of a large black triangular object and then a large crash outside of the city. According to witnesses, there were hundreds of spheres, cylinders and other odd-shaped objects that moved erratically overhead.[2][3][4][5][6]

A broadsheet news article was printed later that month, describing the event. The broadsheet, illustrated with a woodcut engraving and text by Hans Glaser, measures 26.2 centimetres (10.3 in) by 38.0 centimetres (15.0 in). The document is archived in the prints and drawings collection at the Zentralbibliothek Zürich in Zurich, Switzerland.[7]

The broadsheet describes objects of various shapes including crosses, globes, two lunar crescents, a black spear and tubular objects from which several smaller, round objects emerged and darted around the sky at dawn.[8]

The phenomenon described
The text of the broadsheet can be translated as giving the following description of the event:
“In the morning of April 14, 1561, at daybreak, between 4 and 5 a.m., a dreadful apparition occurred on the sun, and then this was seen in Nuremberg in the city, before the gates and in the country – by many men and women. At first there appeared in the middle of the sun two blood-red semi-circular arcs, just like the moon in its last quarter. And in the sun, above and below and on both sides, the color was blood, there stood a round ball of partly dull, partly black ferrous color. Likewise there stood on both sides and as a torus about the sun such blood-red ones and other balls in large number, about three in a line and four in a square, also some alone. In between these globes there were visible a few blood-red crosses, between which there were blood-red strips, becoming thicker to the rear and in the front malleable like the rods of reed-grass, which were intermingled, among them two big rods, one on the right, the other to the left, and within the small and big rods there were three, also four and more globes. These all started to fight among themselves, so that the globes, which were first in the sun, flew out to the ones standing on both sides, thereafter, the globes standing outside the sun, in the small and large rods, flew into the sun. Besides the globes flew back and forth among themselves and fought vehemently with each other for over an hour. And when the conflict in and again out of the sun was most intense, they became fatigued to such an extent that they all, as said above, fell from the sun down upon the earth ‘as if they all burned’ and they then wasted away on the earth with immense smoke. After all this there was something like a black spear, very long and thick, sighted; the shaft pointed to the east, the point pointed west. Whatever such signs mean, God alone knows. Although we have seen, shortly one after another, many kinds of signs on the heaven, which are sent to us by the almighty God, to bring us to repentance, we still are, unfortunately, so ungrateful that we despise such high signs and miracles of God. Or we speak of them with ridicule and discard them to the wind, in order that God may send us a frightening punishment on account of our ungratefulness. After all, the God-fearing will by no means discard these signs, but will take it to heart as a warning of their merciful Father in heaven, will mend their lives and faithfully beg God, that He may avert His wrath, including the well-deserved punishment, on us, so that we may temporarily here and perpetually there, live as his children. For it, may God grant us his help, Amen. By Hanns Glaser, letter-painter of Nurnberg.”[9]

Modern interpretations
According to author Jason Colavito, the woodcut broadsheet became known in modern culture after being published in Carl Jung’s 1958 book Flying Saucers: A Modern Myth of Things Seen in the Skies, a book which analyzed the archetypal meaning of UFOs. More recently, the event has been classified as a UFO sighting by many, and even named the “UFO Battle over Nuremberg” by a few enthusiasts.[10]

Jung expressed a view that the spectacle was likely a natural phenomenon with religious and military interpretations overlaying it. “If the Ufos were living organisms, one would think of a swarm of insects rising with the sun, not to fight one another but to mate and celebrate the marriage flight.” A military interpretation would view the tubes as cannons and the spheres as cannonballs, emphasize the black spearhead at the bottom of the scene, and Glaser’s own testimony that the globes fought vehemently until exhausted. A religious view would emphasize the crosses. Jung thinks the images of four globes coupled by lines suggested crossed marriage quaternities and forms the model for “the primitive cross cousin marriage.” It could also be an individuation symbol. The association of sunrise suggests “the revelation of the light.”[11]

Otto Billig made an effort to provide a historical context for the apparition in his comments. He notes Nuremberg was one of the most prestigious cities of the late Middle Ages, a ‘Free and Imperial City’ known for its wealth and nobility. It tried to maintain a neutrality during the furious warring between Catholics and Protestants during the Reformation, but when one Protestant prince was rebuffed when he insisted on financial tributes to fund his battles, the city was besieged and its trade cut off. Though ultimately successful in defending itself, the rebuilding of fortifications in Nuremberg necessitated a new round of taxation and the city suffered hard times in its aftermath. On Good Friday, 1554 another siege happened and one broadsheet publisher described mock suns that prognosticated God’s will wanted confession of sinful ways – i.e. the victims brought it on themselves. Another sky apparition followed in July of knights fighting each other with fiery swords, thus warning a coming Day of Judgment. Very similar apparitions of knights fighting in the skies were frequently reported during the Thirty Years’ War. Many similar broadsheets of wondrous signs exist in German and Swiss archives and Nuremberg seems the focus of a number of them, presumably because of the hardships and conflicts of the ex-prosperous. Such conditions typically accentuate apocalyptic thought.[12]
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Born on this day:

1678 – Abraham Darby I, English iron master (d. 1717)
Abraham Darby, in his later life called Abraham Darby the Elder, now sometimes known for convenience as Abraham Darby I (14 April 1678 – 8 March 1717) was the first and best known of several men of that name. Born into an English Quaker family that played an important role in the Industrial Revolution, Darby developed a method of producing pig iron in a blast furnace fuelled by coke rather than charcoal. This was a major step forward in the production of iron as a raw material for the Industrial Revolution.

Early life
Abraham Darby was the son of John Darby, a yeoman farmer and locksmith by trade, and his wife Ann Baylies. He was born at Woodsettle, Woodsetton, Staffordshire, just across the county boundary from Dudley, Worcestershire. He was descended from nobility; his great-grandmother Jane was an illegitimate child of Edward Sutton, 5th Baron Dudley.[1]

Abraham’s great-grandmother was a sister of the whole blood to Dud Dudley, who claimed to have smelted iron using coke as a fuel. Unfortunately, the iron that Dudley produced was not acceptable to the charcoal ironmasters.[2] However, this may have inspired his great-grandnephew Darby to perfect this novel method of smelting.

During the early 1690s[3] Darby was apprenticed in Birmingham to Jonathan Freeth, a fellow Quaker and a manufacturer of brass mills for grinding malt. As well as the understanding of metallurgy necessary for the manufacture of products in an alloy like bass, Darby would also have picked up in Birmingham the use by brewers of coke to fuel malting ovens, preventing the sulphur content of coal contaminating the resulting beer, but also avoiding the use of the scarcer charcoal as a fuel.[4] The combination of these two insights was to lead to Darby’s development of the coke-fuelled blast furnace in 1709.[5]

Freeth encouraged Darby to become a highly active member in the Society of Friends, and he remained so all his life. In 1699, when he completed his apprenticeship, he married Mary Sergeant (1678-1718) and moved to Bristol, where he set himself up as a malt mill maker.[6]

Bristol
There was a small community of Quakers in Bristol, and Darby soon gained a reputation for skill and enterprise. In 1702 Darby joined with a number of fellow Quakers to form the Bristol Brass Company, with works at Baptist Mills in Bristol. He brought in ‘Dutchmen’ to operate a brass battery work, making cooking pots and other holloware under a trip hammer.[7]

He also developed a method for casting pots in ‘greensand’ moulds, previously only used for smaller castings. This enabled pots to be mass-produced and to be thinner than those made by the traditional process of casting in loam moulds. For this purpose, he established the Cheese Lane Foundry in 1704. Initially he cast brass pots, but by 1705, he moved on to using iron.[8][9] A young Welsh apprentice, John Thomas,[10] solved the problem by using sand for the mould, with a special casting box and core.[11] Using this casting method Darby could cast pots of sufficient thinness and lightness. Darby took out a patent on the new casting method in 1707,[12] Darby’s successors sold pots over wide areas of England and Wales, and had a virtual monopoly in the trade.[13] For this he used a reverberatory air furnace of a kind developed by Sir Clement Clerke, initially for smelting lead near Bristol, and applied by him or his son Talbot to iron founding at Vauxhall.[14]

Copper at Coalbrookdale
In 1700, another group of Bristol Quakers (including Edward Lloyd and Charles Harford) had agreed to set up a brass works ‘somewhere in England’. It is not clear where, but by 1712, Caleb Lloyd, Jeffrey Pinnell, Abraham Darby and his brother-in-law Thomas Harvey had brass works at Coalbrookdale. This is likely to be linked to an increase in shipment of ‘Callumy’ (Calamine) up the river Severn from 1704 and Darby’s agreement in 1710 to open a copper mine at Harmer Hill in Myddle, on behalf of a ‘Company of the City of Bristol’. However, Darby was not a partner in establishing Tern Mill, near Tern Hall (now Attingham Park) in 1709, though his partners Thomas Harvey, Lloyd and Pinnell were.[8] At this point Darby decided to leave the brass company and concentrate on his iron founding pursuits.

Coalbrookdale furnace
Darby leased the furnace in September 1708, and set to work preparing to get it into blast. His first account book, running from 20 October 1708 to 4 January 1710 survives.[15] This shows the production of ‘charked’ coal in January 1709 and the furnace was brought into blast on 10 January. Darby sold 81 tons of iron goods that year.[16][17]

The furnace was used for the first time on 10 January 1709 and the blast appears to have been successful. Darby was probably helped by the fact that the Shropshire ‘clod coal’ that he was using was fairly sulphur-free. However, experimentation with different fuels continued for some time; for example cargoes of coal were brought up the Severn from Bristol and Neath.[18] Some of the molten iron from the blast was run into pigs and sent down the Severn for use in Bristol foundries, but much of it was used to cast pots and other cast iron goods.[16][19]

The reasons why the iron produced by Darby was not used in forges to make wrought iron have been much debated. The reason may be partly that his pig iron was better for castings than charcoal pig iron, but the presence of silicon as an impurity made it an unattractive feedstock for finery forges.[20] However recent work has thrown doubt on this explanation, which is based on data from the 1720s when the Coalbrookdale Company operated a forge: the forge could hardly even make a profit with charcoal pit iron.[21]

The business was partly financed by a loan from Thomas Goldney II of Bristol and by Graffin Prankard and James Peters becoming partners. Later John Chamberlayne became a partner, and Darby’s brother-in-law Thomas Baylies a manager.[22]

Expansion
In 1712 Darby offered to instruct William Rawlinson, a fellow Quaker and ironmaster, in the techniques of smelting with coke.[23] Apparently, Rawlinson, the founder of the Backbarrow Iron Company in Furness,[24] did not take up the offer.

In 1714, Darby and his partners renewed their lease (effective from 1717) and then built a second blast furnace. This was slightly more productive in the 1720s than the Old Blast Furnace.[25] It is not clear when this furnace began production but it was certainly in use by 1718.[26]

The Company also secured Vale Royal Furnace in central Cheshire, but this did not come into their possession before Abraham Darby’s death. Afterward, it was taken over by Thomas Baylies with other partners.[27][28]

The Company embarked on a similar venture at Dolgûn, near Dolgellau, where John Kelsall was appointed as clerk, but it is probable that the furnace there was not finished until after Darby died, when his widow and the other partners sold off their lease.[27][29]
Death
After 18 months’ illness, Abraham Darby died in 1717, at his home, Madeley Court, Madeley, Shropshire, aged 38. He had built a house for himself in Coalbrookdale but did not live to occupy it. He was buried in the Quaker burial-ground at Broseley, Shropshire. His widow died only a few months later.

A New Company
Darby’s death left the affairs of the business in a mess. His own shares were mortgaged to Thomas Goldney, who then exchanged the debt for eight shares (of 16) in the business. Richard Ford, who married Abraham’s daughter Mary had two shares and became manager, but on the widow’s death Baylies took out letters of administration as a creditor and sought to sell the works. Darby’s eldest son, Abraham Darby II, was only six years old and his two brothers younger still. Accordingly, their uncle Joshua Sergeant bought back some of the shares on behalf of the Darby children. The children were sent away to school,[30] and Abraham II began assisting in the management of the works in 1728 and he was awarded four shares in the company in 1732.[31]

His legacy
Abraham Darby made an important step towards the Industrial Revolution. His method of casting pots in sand provided his successors with a viable business that operated for over two centuries. Smelting iron with coke ultimately released the iron industry from the limitation imposed by the speed of growth of trees. Coke-smelted cast iron went into steam engines, bridges, and many of the inventions of the 19th century. Only with coke smelting could there be produced the great quantities of iron made to meet the requirements of the Industrial Revolution.
Darby leased the furnace in September 1708, and set to work preparing to get it into blast. His first account book, running from 20 October 1708 to 4 January 1710 survives.[15] This shows the production of ‘charked’ coal in January 1709 and the furnace was brought into blast on 10 January. Darby sold 81 tons of iron goods that year.[16][17]

The furnace was used for the first time on 10 January 1709 and the blast appears to have been successful. Darby was probably helped by the fact that the Shropshire ‘clod coal’ that he was using was fairly sulphur-free. However, experimentation with different fuels continued for some time; for example cargoes of coal were brought up the Severn from Bristol and Neath.[18] Some of the molten iron from the blast was run into pigs and sent down the Severn for use in Bristol foundries, but much of it was used to cast pots and other cast iron goods.[16][19]

The reasons why the iron produced by Darby was not used in forges to make wrought iron have been much debated. The reason may be partly that his pig iron was better for castings than charcoal pig iron, but the presence of silicon as an impurity made it an unattractive feedstock for finery forges.[20] However recent work has thrown doubt on this explanation, which is based on data from the 1720s when the Coalbrookdale Company operated a forge: the forge could hardly even make a profit with charcoal pit iron.[21]

The business was partly financed by a loan from Thomas Goldney II of Bristol and by Graffin Prankard and James Peters becoming partners. Later John Chamberlayne became a partner, and Darby’s brother-in-law Thomas Baylies a manager.[22]

 

 

 

 

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