On This Day
1775 – The Continental Congress establishes the Continental Navy (predecessor of the United States Navy).
The Continental Navy was the navy of the United States during the American Revolutionary War, and was formed in 1775. The fleet cumulatively became relatively substantial through the efforts of the Continental Navy’s patron John Adams and vigorous Congressional support in the face of stiff opposition, when considering the limitations imposed upon the Patriot supply pool.
The main goal of the navy was to intercept shipments of British matériel and generally disrupt British maritime commercial operations. The initial fleet consisted of converted merchantmen because of the lack of funding, manpower, and resources, with exclusively designed warships being built later in the conflict. The vessels that successfully made it to sea met with success only rarely, and the effort contributed little to the overall outcome of the war.
The fleet did serve to highlight a few examples of Continental resolve, notably launching Captain John Barry into the limelight. It provided needed experience for a generation of officers who went on to command conflicts which involved the early American navy.
After the war, the Continental Navy was dissolved. With the Federal government in need of all available capital, the few remaining ships were sold, the final vessel Alliance being auctioned off in 1785 to a private bidder.
The Continental Navy is the first establishment of what is now the United States Navy.
1952 – Korean War: The Battle of Triangle Hill is the biggest and bloodiest battle of 1952.
The Battle of Triangle Hill, also known as Operation Showdown or the Shangganling Campaign (Chinese: 上甘岭战役; pinyin: Shànggānlǐng Zhànyì),[nb 3] was a protracted military engagement during the Korean War. The main combatants were two United Nations (UN) infantry divisions, with additional support from the United States Air Force, against elements of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Army (PVA) 15th and 12th Corps.[nb 2] The battle was part of UN attempts to gain control of “The Iron Triangle”, and took place from 14 October to 25 November 1952.
The immediate UN objective was Triangle Hill (38°19′17″N 127°27′52″ECoordinates: 38°19′17″N 127°27′52″E), a forested ridge of high ground 2 kilometers (1.2 mi) north of Gimhwa-eup. The hill was occupied by the veterans of the PVA’s 15th Corps. Over the course of nearly a month, substantial US and Republic of Korea Army (ROK) forces made repeated attempts to capture Triangle Hill and the adjacent Sniper Ridge. Despite clear superiority in artillery and aircraft, escalating UN casualties resulted in the attack being halted after 42 days of fighting, with PVA forces regaining their original positions.
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1582 – Adoption of the Gregorian calendar begins, eventually leading to near-universal adoption.
The adoption of the Gregorian Calendar was an event in the modern history of most cultures and societies, marking a change from their traditional (or old style) dating system to the modern (or new style) dating system, the Gregorian calendar, that is widely used around the world today. Some states adopted the new calendar from 1582, some did not do so before the early twentieth century, and others did so at various dates between; however a number continue to use a different civil calendar. For many the new style calendar is only used for civil purposes and the old style calendar remains used in religious contexts. Today, the Gregorian calendar is the world’s most widely used civil calendar. During – and for some time after – the change between systems, it has been common to use the terms Old Style and New Style when giving dates, to indicate which calendar was used to reckon them.
The Gregorian calendar was decreed in 1582 by the papal bull Inter gravissimas by Pope Gregory XIII, to correct an error in the Julian calendar. The Julian calendar had been based upon a year lasting 365.25 days, but this was slightly too long; in reality it is about 365.2422 days, and so over the centuries, the calendar was increasingly out of alignment with the earth’s orbit.
Although Gregory’s reform was enacted in the most solemn of forms available to the Church, the bull had no authority beyond the Catholic Church and the Papal States. The changes he was proposing were changes to the civil calendar, over which he had no formal authority. They required adoption by the civil authorities in each country to have legal effect. The bull became the canon law of the Catholic Church in 1582, but it was not recognised by Protestant churches, Eastern Orthodox Churches, and a few others. Consequently, the days on which Easter and related holidays were celebrated by different Christian churches diverged.
1384 – Jadwiga is crowned King of Poland, although she is a woman.
Jadwiga (Polish: [jadˈvʲiɡa] (About this soundlisten); 1373 or 1374 – 17 July 1399), also known as Hedwig (Hungarian: Hedvig), was the first female monarch of the Kingdom of Poland, reigning from 16 October 1384 until her death. She was the youngest daughter of Louis the Great, King of Hungary and Poland, and his wife Elizabeth of Bosnia. Jadwiga was a member of the Capetian House of Anjou, but she had more close forebears among the Polish Piasts than among the Angevins. In 1997 she was canonized by the Catholic Church.
In 1375 it was planned that she would eventually marry William of Austria, and would live in Vienna from 1378 to 1380. Jadwiga’s father is thought to have regarded her and William as his favoured successors in Hungary after the 1379 death of her eldest sister, Catherine, since the Polish nobility had that same year pledged their homage to Louis’ second daughter, Mary, and Mary’s fiancé, Sigismund of Luxemburg. However, Louis died, and in 1382, at her mother’s insistence, Mary was crowned “King of Hungary”. Sigismund of Luxemburg tried to take control of Poland, but the Polish nobility countered that they would be obedient to a daughter of King Louis only if she settled in Poland. Queen Elizabeth then chose Jadwiga to reign there, but did not send her to Kraków to be crowned. During the interregnum, Siemowit IV, Duke of Masovia, became a candidate for the Polish throne. The nobility of Greater Poland favored him and proposed that he marry Jadwiga. However, Lesser Poland’s nobility opposed him and persuaded Queen Elizabeth to send Jadwiga to Poland.
Jadwiga was crowned “king” in Poland’s capital, Kraków, on 16 October 1384. Her coronation either reflected the Polish nobility’s opposition to her intended husband, William, becoming king without further negotiation, or simply emphasized her status as queen regnant. With her mother’s consent, Jadwiga’s advisors opened negotiations with Jogaila, Grand Duke of Lithuania, who was still a pagan, concerning his potential marriage to Jadwiga. Jogaila signed the Union of Krewo, pledging to convert to Catholicism and to promote his pagan subjects’ conversion. Meanwhile, William hastened to Kraków, hoping to marry his childhood fiancée Jadwiga, but in late August 1385 the Polish nobles expelled him. Jogaila, who took the baptismal name Władysław, married Jadwiga on 15 February 1386. Legend says that she had agreed to marrying him only after lengthy prayer, seeking divine inspiration.
Jogaila, now in Polish styled Władysław Jagiełło, was crowned King of Poland on 4 March 1386. As Jadwiga’s co-ruler, Jagiełło worked closely with his wife. After rebellious nobles of the Kingdom of Hungary-Croatia had imprisoned her mother and sister, she marched into the Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia, which had been under Hungarian rule, and persuaded most of the inhabitants to become subjects of the Polish Crown. She mediated between her husband’s quarreling kin, and between Poland and the Teutonic Knights. After her sister Mary died in 1395, Jadwiga and Jagiełło laid claim to Hungary against the widowed Sigismund of Luxemburg, but the Hungarian lords failed to support them.
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Born On This Day
1938 – Shirley Caesar, American gospel singer-songwriter
Shirley Ann Caesar-Williams (born October 13, 1938), known professionally as Shirley Caesar, is an American gospel singer, songwriter and recording artist whose career has spanned seven decades. A multi-award-winning artist, with 12 Grammy Awards along with Dove Awards and Stellar Awards to her credit, she is known as the “First Lady of Gospel Music” and “The Queen of Gospel Music.” She began recording at the age of 12 in 1951 on the Federal recording label
Shirley Caesar has released over forty albums. She has participated in over 16 compilations and three gospel musicals, Mama I Want to Sing, Sing: Mama 2 and Born to sing: Mama 3. She is also the creator of the #unameit challenge, which occurred during one of her song sermonettes. She opened her eponymous store and plans on using the profits to help others during the holiday season.
Caesar’s credits also include a series of commercials for MCI Communications and numerous awards for her recordings. She has won 12 Grammy Awards (including The Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award), 14 Stellar Awards, 18 Doves, 1 RIAA gold certification, an Essence Award, McDonald’s Golden Circle Lifetime Achievement Award, NAACP Lifetime Achievement Award, SESAC Lifetime Achievement Award, Rhapsody & Rhythm Award from the National Museum of African American Music, as well as induction into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame. According to Soundscan, she has sold 2.2 million albums since 1991. She has made several notable appearances, including the televised Live from Disney World Night of Joy, the Gospel According to VH1, a White House performance for George Bush, and a speech on the Evolution of Gospel Music to the US Treasury Department. In 2017, Caesar was honored with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award from The Recording Academy.
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1845 – Laura Askew Haygood (d. 1900)
Laura Askew Haygood (October 14, 1845 – April 29, 1900) was an American educator and missionary from Georgia. A sister of Atticus Greene Haygood, she founded a school in Atlanta and served as a missionary in China.
Haygood was born in Watkinsville, Georgia on October 14, 1845 to Greene Berry Haygood and Martha Ann Askew. She was the younger sister of Atticus Greene Haygood, who would later become a bishop in the Methodist Episcopal Church, South (MECS). In 1852, her family moved to Atlanta, where she was homeschooled by her mother. She would later enroll at Wesleyan College at the age of 16, graduating two years later with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1864. Shortly thereafter, she opened her own high school for girls in Atlanta, which ultimately merged with Girls High School. Haygood served as the principal and an educator at Girls following its merger in 1877. In 1882, Haygood established the Trinity Home Mission to assist in training women to help the poor in Atlanta.
In 1884, Haygood was sent to China as a missionary by the Woman’s Board of Missions of the MECS. While in Shanghai, she helped found the McTyeire School in 1892, which is now Shanghai No. 3 Girls’ High School. Placed on medical furlough between 1894 and 1896, Haygood would afterwards return to China to serve as director of the Woman’s Board.
Death and legacy
Haygood died on April 29, 1900 while on mission in Shanghai. She was buried at the Bubbling Well Road Cemetery in the Shanghai International Settlement.
In 1916, the Laura Haygood Normal School was established in Soochow. In 1926, Haygood Memorial Methodist Church was established in Atlanta’s Morningside neighborhood, named in honor of Laura and her brother. In 2000, she was inducted into the Georgia Women of Achievement.
1906 – Alicia Patterson, American journalist and publisher, co-founded Newsday (d. 1963)
Alicia Patterson (October 15, 1906 – July 2, 1963) was an American journalist, the founder and editor of Newsday, which became a respected and Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper. With Neysa McMein, she created the Deathless Deer comic strip in 1943.
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1941 – Emma Nicholson, Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, English computer programmer and politician
Emma Harriet Nicholson, Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne (born 16 October 1941) is a British politician, who has been a life peer since 1997. She was elected as the Conservative Member of Parliament for Torridge and West Devon in 1987, before switching to the Liberal Democrats in 1995. She was also the Liberal Democrat Member of the European Parliament for South East England from 1999 to 2009. In 2016, she announced she was re-joining the Conservative Party “with tremendous pleasure”. In 2017, Baroness Nicholson was appointed as Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy for Kazakhstan.
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Atlas Obscura: Resurrecting the Spudnut, America’s Forgotten Halloween Treat Bake the recipe remnant of a potato doughnut empire that once stretched from the United States to Japan.
By Open Culture: William Shatner in Tears After Becoming the Oldest Person in Space: ‘I’m So Filled with Emotion … I Hope I Never Recover from This”
By Josh Jones, Open Culture: The Bombing of Pompeii During World War II
By Ted Mills, Open Culture: A Sneak Peek of Peter Jackson’s New Beatles Documentary Get Back: Watch the New Trailer
The Passive Voice, From Publishers Weekly: A Writer Says Goodbye to the Twittersphere
The Yummy Bowl: Baked Buffalo Chicken Tostada
By Susan Bronson, Taste of Home: 35 Recipes Today’s Midwestern Moms Rely on Most
Food Network: 5-Star Pasta Recipes
I Wash You Dry: Spooky Delicious Treats for Halloween
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