Side note: This is the SAME judge who was lenient with the white football players who sexually assaulted a black, mentally disabled teammate.
1497 – The Bonfire of the Vanities occurs, during which supporters of Girolamo Savonarola burn cosmetics, art, and books in Florence, Italy.
A Bonfire of the Vanities (Italian: Falò delle vanità) is a burning of objects condemned by authorities as occasions of sin. The phrase usually refers to the bonfire of 7 February 1497, when supporters of the Dominican priest Girolamo Savonarola collected and publicly burned thousands of objects such as cosmetics, art, and books in Florence, Italy, on the Mardi Gras festival. Such bonfires were not invented by Savonarola, but had been a common accompaniment to the outdoor sermons of San Bernardino di Siena in the first half of the century.
The focus of this destruction was nominally on objects that might tempt one to sin, including vanity items such as mirrors, cosmetics, fine dresses, playing cards, and even musical instruments. Other targets included books that were deemed to be immoral, such as works by Boccaccio, and manuscripts of secular songs, as well as artworks, including paintings and sculpture.
Fra Girolamo Savonarola was a Dominican priest who was assigned to work in Florence in 1490, largely thanks to the request of Lorenzo de’ Medici – an irony, considering that within a few years Savonarola would become one of the foremost enemies of the Medici house and helped to bring about their downfall in 1494. Savonarola campaigned against what he considered to be the artistic and social excesses of Renaissance Italy, preaching with great vigor against any sort of luxury. His power and influence grew so that with time he became the effective ruler of Florence, and even had soldiers for his protection following him around everywhere.
Starting in February 1495, during the time that would normally have hosted the festival known as Carnival, Savonarola began to host his regular “Bonfire of the Vanities.” He collected various objects that he considered to be objectionable; irreplaceable manuscripts, ancient sculptures, antique and modern paintings, priceless tapestries, and many other valuable works of art, as well as mirrors, musical instruments, books of divination, astrology, and magic. He destroyed the works of Ovid, Propertius, Dante, and Boccaccio. So great was his influence that he even managed to obtain the cooperation of major contemporary artists such as Sandro Botticelli and Lorenzo di Credi, who reluctantly consigned some of their own works to his bonfires. Anyone who tried to object found their hands being forced by teams of ardent Savonarola supporters. These supporters called themselves Piagnoni (Weepers) after a public nickname that was originally intended as an insult.
Savonarola’s influence did not go unnoticed by the higher church officials, however, and his excesses earned him the disdain of Pope Alexander VI. He was eventually excommunicated on May 13, 1497. Savonarola was executed on May 23, 1498, hung on a cross and burned to death. Ironically, the papal authorities would take a leaf out of Savonarola’s book on censorship, because the day after his execution they gave word that anyone in possession of the Friar’s writings had four days to turn them over to a papal agent to be destroyed. Anyone who failed to do so faced excommunication.
Although it is widely reported that the Florentine artist Sandro Botticelli burned several of his paintings based on classical mythology in the great Florentine bonfire of 1497, the historical record on this is not clear. According to the art historian Giorgio Vasari, Botticelli was a partisan of Savonarola: “He was so ardent a partisan that he was thereby induced to desert his painting, and, having no income to live on, fell into very great distress.” Writing several centuries later, Orestes Brownson, an apologist for Savonarola, mentions artwork only by Fra Bartolomeo, Lorenzo di Credi, and “many other painters,” along with “several antique statues.” Art historian Rab Hatfield argues that one of Botticelli’s paintings, The Mystical Nativity, is based on the sermon Savonarola delivered on Christmas Eve, 1493.
1907 – The Mud March is the first large procession organized by the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS).
The Mud March was the name given, after the event, to the first large procession organised by the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (NUWSS) on 7 February 1907. More than 3,000 women trudged through the wet, cold and muddy streets of London from Hyde Park to Exeter Hall to advocate for women’s suffrage.
Millicent Fawcett, the leader of the NUWSS and one of the leaders of the march, said of the elements: “The London weather did its worst against us; mud, mud, mud, was its prominent feature, and it was known among us afterwards as the ‘mud march.'” Despite the conditions, the march was described as: “A gay enough procession by most accounts, despite the weather. Little touches of red and white splashed its length with rosettes and favours, posies bound with red and white handkerchiefs programmes, and above the line, white banners with vivid scarlet lettering.”
The march was attended by “titled women, university women, artists, members of women’s clubs, temperance advocates, and women textile workers gathered from all parts of the country.” More than forty organisations were represented at the march. One description declared, “‘[there were] plenty of well-dressed ladies and a few persons of distinction’ to head it up and ‘a long line of carriages and motor-cars to wind it up–altogether an imposing and representative array.'”
Key people and organisational distinctions
Phillipa (Pippa) Strachey, daughter of Lady Strachey one of the leaders of the procession, organised the march. The Mud March demonstrated Strachey’s skill as an “organizing genius” and led to the planning of many more processions. She was described as the “indefatigable organizer, [the] competent, [and] imaginative” woman who was responsible for the meticulous planning of all future large processions of the NUWSS. Members of the Artists’ Suffrage League produced posters and postcards and designed and produced around 80 embroidered banners for the march.
Millicent Fawcett, co-led the march with fellow “constitutionalist” suffragists Lady Strachey, Lady Frances Balfour, and Keir Hardie. The constitutionalist suffragists, of which the NUWSS was comprised, were “committed by definition to non-militant activity,” whereas the “suffragettes,” of which the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU) was comprised, employed militant tactics of protest.
Constitutionalists such as Fawcett did not condone the militant tactics of the suffragettes but recognized they needed to be visible and vocal in society to be successful in their cause. One historical scholar suggests that the march demonstrated that the NUWSS “[came to] believe that only the mass demonstration could provide evidence—through its scale[—] that large numbers of women wanted to vote, and through its administration and design that the community at large would gain.”
Some time after the march, Fawcett stated, “We, the old stagers, adopted new methods, one of the most successful of which was the organisation of public processions in the streets.”
Despite the poor weather conditions, thousands of spectators lined the route. The sight of women of all ages, classes, and professions marching side by side—in horrendous weather through muddied streets—was a novelty worth withstanding the elements to witness. Newspapers and magazines in Europe and in the United States fixated on the diversity represented in the march.
The idea that women had a general distaste for “public display” in British society at this time made the participants appear even more dedicated in the eyes of the spectators. As the Manchester Guardian noted: “Nobody can suppose that most of the women who took part [in the march]…can have done so for sport or for the pleasure of the thing…it requires some courage for a woman to step out of her drawing room into the street to take her place in a mixed throng for a cause probably distasteful to many or most of her acquaintances, and to see herself pilloried in the newspaper the next morning by name as one of the ‘Suffragists.'”
At its conclusion, one participant was quoted as saying, “We had done what had seemed to so many the ridiculous thing, and the crowd, by taking us seriously, had robbed it of its absurdity.”
Scholarly insights on long-term effects
Leaders of the suffragist movement, contemporary historians and scholars consider the march to have helped solidify large suffrage processions as a key feature of the British movement.
Deborah Gardener, of the Yale University Press and the New-York Historical Society, cites the Mud March as the first significant, large suffragist procession in England and underlines the positive effect such events had on the image of suffragists in the public eye:
The suffrage marches drew thousands of participants, starting with the three thousand in February 1907—the ‘Mud March’—and ending with forty thousand at the last in 1913, but more important they drew vast crowds (hundreds of thousands) and concomitant press coverage. Both the constitutionalists and the militants understood the value of such reportage in conveying the message ‘that all sorts and conditions of women wanted the vote, and that women who wanted the vote were not as they popularly conceived to be in the public mind or as caricatured in the illustrated press’…the suffragist movement’s capture of the image of ‘womanly’ women, in contrast to popular images of ‘shrieking’ or hysterical women.
In The Spectacle of Women: Imagery of the Suffrage Campaign 1907–14, author Lisa Tickner recognises, as did Gardener, its long-term significance: “The Mud March, modest and uncertain as it was by subsequent standards, established the precedent of large-scale processions, carefully ordered and publicized.” Tickner also observes that the “social mix” represented in the procession was a foretaste of the effect the suffrage movement would have on the interaction between classes in society.
In her book Connecting Links: The British and American Suffrage Movements, 1900–1914, Patricia Harrison suggests that the NUWSS was able to emulate the enthusiasm and resolve of the militants while remaining loyal to the constitutional suffrage movement’s commitment to non-militant tactics by organising processions and demonstrations like the Mud March.
1726 – Margaret Fownes-Luttrell, English painter (d. 1766)
Margaret Fownes-Luttrell[a] (7 February 1726 – 13 August 1766) was an English artist and wife of Henry Fownes Luttrell. Two of her paintings are part of the Dunster Castle collection, now property of the National Trust. She was the heiress of Dunster Castle, under the stipulation in her father’s will that her husband should take the additional surname of Luttrell. Four portraits of her exist in Dunster castle and a fifth at Bathealton Court.
Dunster Castle in 1733, showing the then recently planted New Way, the mansion (l), Great Gatehouse (c) and stables (r). The motte, with the summer house, is visible in the background
Margaret Luttrell was born on 7 February 1726, the only child and sole heiress of Alexander Luttrell (1705–1737) of Dunster Castle by his wife Margaret Trevelyan (died 1764), daughter of Sir John Trevelyan, 2nd Baronet of Nettlecombe, Somerset, and an artist who made floral paintings. Margaret’s father died on 4 June 1737 at Dunster, at which time he was in debt, “due in part to his personal extravagance and in part to the necessity imposed upon him by his parents of providing a fortune of £10,000 for Anne Luttrell,” daughter of his deceased brother Francis Luttrell (1709–1732) of Venn, Somerset, and wife of Edward Pleydell. As a result, Dunster Castle was thrown into Chancery and closed.
In 1741 Margaret’s mother remarried to Edward Dyke of Pixton and Tetton in Somerset, and young Margaret was raised with two girls in her mother’s care. One was her first cousin, Anne Luttrell, and the other was Elizabeth Dyke, Edward Dyke’s cousin. The family lived at Edward Dyke’s houses, Pixton and Tetton. A “moderate sum” was expended on her education, which included music lessons, and care.
Margaret Trevelyan died in 1764.
Marriage and progeny
On 16 February 1747, when she came of age, in Kingston St Mary Church she married her second cousin Henry Fownes (d.1780) of Nethway House, Kingswear (historically in Brixham), Devon. Both shared as a great-grandfather Edward Yard (1638–1703) of Churston Ferrers, MP for Ashburton in 1685, who himself was a grandson of Thomas Fownes (d.1635), Mayor of Plymouth in 1619. They thus also shared the same great-great-great grandfather as Thomas Fownes’s great-grandson was John Fownes (1661–1731) of Kittery Court, Whitley, Devon, MP for Dartmouth 1713–14, grandfather of Henry Fownes (d.1780), husband of Margaret Luttrell. On their marriage Dunster Castle became the property of her husband (married women in England were legally incapable of owning property until 1882), who adopted the additional surname Luttrell after his own, and adopted the Luttrell arms (but continued to quarter Fownes), in accordance with a stipulation in Alexander Luttrell’s will. They moved into Dunster Castle and updated the interior with Chinese painted wallpaper and new furniture in a Rococo style. New windows were installed in the stair hall and dining room. The marriage was a happy one and resulted in the birth of ten children, including:
John Fownes Luttrell (1752–1816), eldest son and heir, of Dunster Castle, MP for Minehead (1776–1816), the Luttrell pocket borough adjacent to Dunster Castle;
Lieutenant Henry Fownes-Luttrell (1753–1777), 2nd son, who died unmarried.
Rev. Alexander Fownes Luttrell (born 1754), 3rd son, Rector of East Quantoxhead, which manor had been held by the Luttrells since 1232, and Vicar of Minehead.
Francis Fownes Luttrell (1756–1823), 4th son, a barrister of the Middle Temple, a commissioner of customs and MP for Minehead 1780-3;
Lt-Col. Thomas Fownes Luttrell (1763–1811), 5th son;
Margaret Fownes-Luttrell (1747-1792), only daughter, whose three portraits are on display in Dunster Castle, one as an adult by Sir Joshua Reynolds (with a copy) and another as an infant by Phelps. She married John Henry Southcote (1747) on 24 May 1769. They had two daughters.
After her death John married Priscilla Aston and they had 3 sons and a daughter. Josias Southcote (1798) Henry Aston (born Southcote)(1804-1888). Note: He was baptised again in 1821 as Henry Aston. Isabella Southcote (1809) Thomas Southcote (1812)
1906 – Oleg Konstantinovich Antonov, Russian engineer, founded the Antonov Aircraft Company (d. 1984)
Oleg Konstantinovich Antonov (Russian: Оле́г Константи́нович Анто́нов, ; 7 February 1906 – 4 April 1984) was a prominent Soviet aircraft designer, and the first chief of the Antonov – a world-famous aircraft company in Ukraine, later named in his honour.
Antonov was personally responsible for designing a number of very successful Soviet airplanes (such as the Antonov An-12) and gliders for both civilian and military use.
Antonov was born on 7 February 1906 in Troitsy (now Podolsky District of the Moscow Oblast), Russian Empire. Russian Ethnicity. In 1912, the Antonovs moved to Saratov, where he attended the non-classical secondary school (now gymnasium №1) and secondary school (now school №23). From an early age, Antonov was fascinated with aviation and spent much of his spare time at the local airfield.
Early engineering career
At the age of 17, Antonov founded the “Amateur Aviation Club” and later joined the “Organization of Friends of the Air Force”. Later he designed the OKA-1 “Pigeon”, a glider that was entered in a competition in Moscow where he won the first prize, a flight on a Junkers 12 aircraft.
In 1930, Antonov graduated from the Kalinin Polytechnical Institute in Leningrad. He continued to design gliders and in 1931 Antonov became the chief designer at the Moscow Glider Factory. During the next eight years, he designed 30 different gliders including the Standard-1, Standard-2, OKA-6 and the large “City of Lenin” glider. Due to a requirement that all pilots in the Soviet Union had to begin their flight training on gliders, Antonov was able to produce up to 8,000 gliders per year.
In 1938, after an incident when an instructor defected to the West using a glider, the Soviet government reversed its decision regarding glider training, banned the sport of gliding and shut down the Moscow Glider Factory.
Professional designer career and World War II
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Following the closure of the glider factory, Antonov was appointed the Chief Designer for the Yakovlev Design Bureau. In 1940 a new aircraft design bureau under his own management was established in Leningrad.
During World War II, Antonov designed the A-7 military glider used for airbridge supply of the Soviet partisans behind the front lines, and the KT “Kryl’ja Tanka” (“Tank Wings”) biplane glider that was designed to airlift tanks. In 1943, Antonov returned to Yakovlev’s design bureau to fill a vacancy as Yakovlev’s deputy. A great deal of his time and energy was devoted to the improvement of the Yak series, one of the most mass-produced fighter aircraft types of World War II.
Postwar career and establishment of the Antonov company
After the war, Antonov requested that Yakovlev let him work independently, heading Yakovlev’s subsidiary design office at the aircraft manufacturing factory at Novosibirsk. On 31 May 1946, Antonov was appointed head of the newly redesignated facility (subsequently known as the Antonov Research and Design Bureau), which was later moved to Kiev, Ukraine. In September 1946, Antonov, in addition to his management of the design bureau, became the Director of the Siberian R&D Institute for Aeronautics.
The first of the Antonov Bureau’s designs was the SKh-1 (Se’lsko Khozyaystvennyi- pervoy – agricultural-first one) agricultural aircraft, later redesignated An-2, designed to meet a 1947 Soviet requirement for a replacement for the Polikarpov Po-2 which was used in large numbers as both an agricultural aircraft and a utility aircraft. Antonov designed a large single bay biplane of all-metal construction, with an enclosed cockpit and a cabin accommodating 12 passengers.
A series of significant transports followed under Oleg Antonov’s helm. Antonov aircraft (design office prefix An-) range from a rugged An-2 (which itself is comparatively large for a biplane) through the An-28 reconnaissance aircraft to the massive An-124 Ruslan strategic airlifter. The quad-turboprop An-12 and its derivatives became the primary Soviet military transport from 1959 onward. While less well-known, the An-24, An-26, An-30 and An-32 family of twin turboprop, high winged, passenger/cargo/troops aircraft predominate in domestic/short-haul air services in the former Soviet Union and parts of the world formerly under Soviet influence. Antonov also oversaw development of the mid-range (An-72/An-74 jet airplanes family. The world’s largest production aircraft, the An-124 Ruslan, flew for the first time in 1982, and its specialised shuttle-carrying/extra-heavy cargo derivative, the An-225 Mriya entered development still under Antonov’s guidance, but did not make its maiden flight until 1989 after the death of Antonov. In November 2004, FAI placed the An-225 in the Guinness Book of Records for its 240 records. Some of Antonov’s designs are also built abroad such as the Shaanxi Y-8.
Oleg Antonov died April 4, 1984 in Kiev, Ukrainian SSR and has been buried in the Baikove Cemetery.
Honorary titles, awards and legacy
Ukrainian 2006 commemoration coin featuring Antonov’s portrait and aircraft designs.
During his lifetime, Antonov was recognized as a Doctor of Science, Academician of the Academy of Science of the Ukrainian SSR (1968), Hero of Socialist Labor (1966), and elected member of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of the 5th, 6th and 7th convocations.
Among numerous awards, Antonov received the State Award of the USSR in 1952 and Lenin Award in 1962.
Antonov was decorated with three Orders of Lenin, the Order of the October Revolution, the Order of the Patriotic War 1st class, the Order of the Red Banner of Labour and the Medal “Partisan of the Patriotic War” 1st class.
A street in Kiev’s Solomyanka neighborhood is named after Oleg Antonov.
A coin was minted of copper nickel alloy in 2006 by the National Bank of Ukraine honoring Antonov. In addition, a silver proof coin was issued by the Bank of Russia to commemorate 100 years since Antonov’s birth.
1815 – New Jersey grants the first American railroad charter to John Stevens.
Col. John Stevens, III (June 26, 1749 – March 6, 1838) was an American lawyer, engineer, and inventor who constructed the first U.S. steam locomotive, first steam-powered ferry, and first U.S. commercial ferry service from his estate in Hoboken. He was influential in the creation of U.S. patent law.
Stevens was born June 26, 1749, in New York City, New York, the son of John Stevens, a prominent state politician who served as a delegate to the Continental Congress, and Elizabeth Alexander, daughter of New York lawyer and statesman James Alexander. His sister, Mary Stevens (d. 1814), married Robert R. Livingston, the first Chancellor of the State of New York.
He graduated King’s College (which became Columbia University) in May 1768.
At age 27 he was appointed a Captain in Washington’s army, and was afterwards treasurer of New Jersey, and bought at public auction from the state of New Jersey land which had been confiscated from a Tory landowner. The land, described as “William Bayard’s farm at Hoebuck” comprised approximately what is now the city of Hoboken. Stevens built his estate at Castle Point, on land that would later become the site of Stevens Institute of Technology (bequeathed by his son Edwin Augustus Stevens).
In 1802 he built a screw-driven steamboat, and in 1806 he built the Phoenix, a steamboat that ultimately sailed from Hoboken to Philadelphia in 1809, thereby becoming the first steamship to successfully navigate the open ocean.
In October 1811, Stevens’ ship the Juliana began operation as the first steam-powered ferry (service was between New York, New York, and Hoboken, New Jersey). The first railroad charter in the U.S. was given to Stevens and others in 1815 for the New Jersey Railroad. He designed and built a steam locomotive capable of hauling several passenger cars at his estate in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1825.The invention of the steam engine helped begin the modern railroads and trains. He also helped develop United States patent law.
1959 – Jack Kilby of Texas Instruments files the first patent for an integrated circuit.
Jack St. Clair Kilby (November 8, 1923 – June 20, 2005) was an American electrical engineer who took part (along with Robert Noyce) in the realization of the first integrated circuit while working at Texas Instruments (TI) in 1958. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics on December 10, 2000. To congratulate him, US President Bill Clinton wrote, “You can take pride in the knowledge that your work will help to improve lives for generations to come.”
He is also the inventor of the handheld calculator and the thermal printer, for which he has patents. He also has patents for seven other inventions.
In mid-1958, Kilby, as a newly employed engineer at Texas Instruments (TI), did not yet have the right to a summer vacation. He spent the summer working on the problem in circuit design that was commonly called the “tyranny of numbers” and finally came to the conclusion that manufacturing the circuit components en masse in a single piece of semiconductor material could provide a solution. On September 12 he presented his findings to management, which included Mark Shepherd. He showed them a piece of germanium with an oscilloscope attached, pressed a switch, and the oscilloscope showed a continuous sine wave, proving that his integrated circuit worked and thus that he had solved the problem. U.S. Patent 3,138,743 for “Miniaturized Electronic Circuits”, the first integrated circuit, was filed on February 6, 1959. Along with Robert Noyce (who independently made a similar circuit a few months later), Kilby is generally credited as co-inventor of the integrated circuit.
Jack Kilby went on to pioneer military, industrial, and commercial applications of microchip technology. He headed teams that built both the first military system and the first computer incorporating integrated circuits. He later co-invented both the hand-held calculator and the thermal printer that was used in portable data terminals.
In 1970, he took a leave of absence from TI to work as an independent inventor. He explored, among other subjects, the use of silicon technology for generating electrical power from sunlight. From 1978 to 1984 he held the position of Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering at Texas A&M University.
In 1983, Kilby retired from Texas Instruments.
Awards and honors
Recognition of Kilby’s outstanding achievements have been made by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), including the election to IEEE Fellow in 1966, the IEEE David Sarnoff Award in 1966, co-recipient of the first IEEE Cledo Brunetti Award in 1978, the IEEE Centennial Medal in 1984 and the IEEE Medal of Honor in 1986. He was co-recipient of the Franklin Institute’s Stuart Ballantine Medal in 1966. In 1982 and 1989, he received the Holley Medal from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). He was elected to member of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) in 1967, received the Academy’s Vladimir K. Zworykin Award in 1975, and was co-recipient of the first NAE’s Charles Stark Draper Prize in 1989. The Kilby Award Foundation was founded in 1980 in his honor.
He is also the recipient of the nation’s most prestigious honors in science and engineering: the National Medal of Science in 1969 and the National Medal of Technology in 1990. In 1982, he was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
In 1993 he was awarded the prestigious Kyoto Prize by the Inamori Foundation. He was awarded both the Washington Award, administered by the Western Society of Engineers and the Eta Kappa Nu Vladimir Karapetoff Award in 1999. In 2000, Kilby was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for his breakthrough discovery, and delivered his personal view of the industry and its history in his acceptance speech.
Kilby was awarded nine honorary doctorate degrees from Universities including Southern Methodist University, the University of Miami, University of Illinois, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Texas A&M University, Yale and Rochester Institute of Technology. The National Chiao Tung University (NCTU) in Taiwan awarded Kilby with a certificate of Honorary Professorship in 1998.
The Kilby Center, TI’s research center for silicon manufacturing, is named after him.
The Jack Kilby Computer Centre at the Merchiston Campus of Edinburgh Napier University in Edinburgh is also named in his honor.
U.S. Patent 2,892,130 Plug-in Circuit Units, filed December 1953, issued June 1959, assigned to Globe-Union, Inc.
U.S. Patent 3,072,832 Semiconductor Structure Fabrication, filed May 1959, issued January 1963
U.S. Patent 3,115,581 Miniature Semiconductor Integrated Circuit, filed May 1959, issued December 1963
U.S. Patent 3,138,721 Miniature Semiconductor Network Diode and Gate, filed May 1959, issued June 1964
U.S. Patent 3,138,743 Miniaturized Electronic Circuits, filed February 6, 1959, issued June, 1964
U.S. Patent 3,138,744 Miniaturized Self-contained Circuit Modules, filed May 1959, issued June 1964
U.S. Patent 3,435,516 Semiconductor Structure Fabrication, filed May 1959, issued April 1969
U.S. Patent 3,496,333 Thermal Printer, filed October 1965, issued February 1970
U.S. Patent 3,819,921 Miniature Electronic Calculator, originally filed September 1967, issued June 1974
1465 – Scipione del Ferro, Italian mathematician and theorist (d. 1526)
Scipione del Ferro (6 February 1465 – 5 November 1526) was an Italian mathematician who first discovered a method to solve the depressed cubic equation.
Scipione del Ferro was born in Bologna, in northern Italy, to Floriano and Filippa Ferro. His father, Floriano, worked in the paper industry, which owed its existence to the invention of the press in the 1450s and which probably allowed Scipione to access various works during early stages of his life. He married and had a daughter, who was named Filippa after his mother.
He likely studied at the University of Bologna, where he was appointed a lecturer in Arithmetic and Geometry in 1496. During his last years, he also undertook commercial work.
Diffusion of his work
There are no surviving scripts from del Ferro. This is in large part due to his resistance to communicating his works. Instead of publishing his ideas, he would only show them to a small, select group of friends and students.
It is suspected that this is due to the practice of mathematicians at the time of publicly challenging one another. When a mathematician accepted another’s challenge, each mathematician needed to solve the other’s problems. The loser in a challenge often lost funding or his university position. Del Ferro was fearful of being challenged and likely kept his greatest work secret so that he could use it to defend himself in the event of a challenge.
Despite this secrecy, he had a notebook where he recorded all his important discoveries. After his death in 1526, this notebook was inherited by his son-in-law Hannival Nave, who was married to del Ferro’s daughter, Filippa. Nave was also a mathematician and a former student of del Ferro’s, and he replaced del Ferro at the University of Bologna after his death.
In 1543, Gerolamo Cardano and Ludovico Ferrari (one of Cardano’s students) travelled to Bologna to meet Nave and learn about his late father-in-law’s notebook, where the solution to the depressed cubic equation appeared.
Del Ferro also made other important contributions to the rationalization of fractions with denominators containing sums of cube roots.
He also investigated geometry problems with a compass set at a fixed angle, but little is known about his work in this area.
1748 – Adam Weishaupt, German philosopher and academic, founded the Illuminati (d. 1830)
Johann Adam Weishaupt (6 February 1748 – 18 November 1830) was a German philosopher and founder of the Order of the Illuminati, a secret society.
Adam Weishaupt was born on 6 February 1748 in Ingolstadt in the Electorate of Bavaria. Weishaupt’s father Johann Georg Weishaupt (1717–1753) died when Adam was five years old. After his father’s death he came under the tutelage of his godfather Johann Adam Freiherr von Ickstatt who, like his father, was a professor of law at the University of Ingolstadt. Ickstatt was a proponent of the philosophy of Christian Wolff and of the Enlightenment, and he influenced the young Weishaupt with his rationalism. Weishaupt began his formal education at age seven at a Jesuit school. He later enrolled at the University of Ingolstadt and graduated in 1768 at age 20 with a doctorate of law. In 1772 he became a professor of law. The following year he married Afra Sausenhofer of Eichstätt.
After Pope Clement XIV’s suppression of the Society of Jesus in 1773, Weishaupt became a professor of canon law, a position that was held exclusively by the Jesuits until that time. In 1775 Weishaupt was introduced to the empirical philosophy of Johann Georg Heinrich Feder of the University of Göttingen. Both Feder and Weishaupt would later become opponents of Kantian idealism.
At a time, however, when there was no end of making game of and abusing secret societies, I planned to make use of this human foible for a real and worthy goal, for the benefit of people. I wished to do what the heads of the ecclesiastical and secular authorities ought to have done by virtue of their offices …
On 1 May 1776 Johann Adam Weishaupt founded the “Illuminati” in the Electorate of Bavaria. He adopted the name of “Brother Spartacus” within the order. Even Encyclopedia references vary on the goal of the order, such as New Advent saying the Order was not egalitarian or democratic internally, and sought to promote the doctrines of equality and freedom throughout society; while others like Collier’s have said the aim was to combat religion and foster rationalism in its place.
The actual character of the society was an elaborate network of spies and counter-spies. Each isolated cell of initiates reported to a superior, whom they did not know: a party structure that was effectively adopted by some later groups.
Weishaupt was initiated into the Masonic Lodge “Theodor zum guten Rath”, at Munich in 1777. His project of “illumination, enlightening the understanding by the sun of reason, which will dispel the clouds of superstition and of prejudice” was an unwelcome reform. He used Freemasonry to recruit for his own quasi-masonic society, with the goal of “perfecting human nature” through re-education to achieve a communal state with nature, freed of government and organized religion. Presenting their own system as pure masonry, Weishaupt and Adolph Freiherr Knigge, who organised his ritual structure, greatly expanded the secret organisation.
Contrary to Immanuel Kant’s famous dictum that Enlightenment (and Weishaupt’s Order was in some respects an expression of the Enlightenment Movement) was the passage by man out of his ‘self-imposed immaturity’ through daring to ‘make use of his own reason, without the guidance of another,’ Weishaupt’s Order of Illuminati prescribed in great detail everything which the members had obediently to read and think, so that Dr. Wolfgang Riedel has commented that this approach to illumination or enlightenment constituted a degradation and twisting of the Kantian principle of Enlightenment. Riedel writes: ‘The independence of thought and judgement required by Kant … was specifically prevented by the Order of the Illuminati’s rules and regulations. Enlightenment takes place here, if it takes place at all, precisely under the direction of another, namely under that of the “Superiors” [of the Order].
Weishaupt’s radical rationalism and vocabulary were not likely to succeed. Writings that were intercepted in 1784 were interpreted as seditious, and the Society was banned by the government of Karl Theodor, Elector of Bavaria, in 1784. Weishaupt lost his position at the University of Ingolstadt and fled Bavaria.
This article is about the secret society. For the film, see Illuminata (film). For the Muslim esoteric school, see Illuminationism. For the conspiracy theory, see New World Order (conspiracy theory). For other uses, see Illuminati (disambiguation).
Adam Weishaupt (1748–1830), founder of the Bavarian Illuminati
The Illuminati (plural of Latin illuminatus, “enlightened”) is a name given to several groups, both real and fictitious. Historically, the name usually refers to the Bavarian Illuminati, an Enlightenment-era secret society founded on 1 May 1776. The society’s goals were to oppose superstition, obscurantism, religious influence over public life and abuses of state power. “The order of the day,” they wrote in their general statutes, “is to put an end to the machinations of the purveyors of injustice, to control them without dominating them”. The Illuminati—along with Freemasonry and other secret societies—were outlawed through edict, by the Bavarian ruler, Charles Theodore, with the encouragement of the Roman Catholic Church, in 1784, 1785, 1787 and 1790. In the several years following, the group was vilified by conservative and religious critics who claimed that they continued underground and were responsible for the French Revolution.
Many influential intellectuals and progressive politicians counted themselves as members, including Ferdinand of Brunswick and the diplomat Xavier von Zwack, who was the Order’s second-in-command. It attracted literary men such as Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Johann Gottfried Herder and the reigning dukes of Gotha and Weimar.
In subsequent use, “Illuminati” refers to various organisations which claim or are purported to have links to the original Bavarian Illuminati or similar secret societies, though these links are unsubstantiated. They are often alleged to conspire to control world affairs, by masterminding events and planting agents in government and corporations, in order to gain political power and influence and to establish a New World Order. Central to some of the most widely known and elaborate conspiracy theories, the Illuminati have been depicted as lurking in the shadows and pulling the strings and levers of power in dozens of novels, films, television shows, comics, video games, and music videos.
1846 – The United States House of Representatives votes to stop sharing the Oregon Territory with the United Kingdom.
The Territory of Oregon was an organized incorporated territory of the United States that existed from August 14, 1848, until February 14, 1859, when the southwestern portion of the territory was admitted to the Union as the State of Oregon. Originally claimed by several countries (See Oregon Country), the region was divided between the UK and US in 1846. When established, the territory encompassed an area that included the current states of Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, as well as parts of Wyoming and Montana. The capital of the territory was first Oregon City, then Salem, followed briefly by Corvallis, then back to Salem, which became the state capital upon Oregon’s admission to the Union.
Originally inhabited by Native Americans, the region that became the Oregon Territory was explored by Europeans first by sea. The first documented exploration came in 1777 by the Spanish, with British and American vessels visiting the region within a few years. Later, land based exploration by Alexander Mackenzie and the Lewis and Clark Expedition along with the establishment of the fur trade in the region set up a variety of conflicting territorial claims by European powers and the United States.
These conflicts led to several treaties, including the Treaty of 1818 that set up a “joint occupation” between the United States and the British over the region that included parts of the current U.S. states of Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming, and Montana as well as the Canadian province of British Columbia.
During the period of joint occupation, most activity in the region outside of the activities of the indigenous people came from the fur trade, which was dominated by the British Hudson’s Bay Company. Over time, some trappers began to settle down in the area and began farming, and missionaries started to arrive in the 1830s. Some settlers also began arriving in the late 1830s, and covered wagons crossed the Oregon Trail beginning in 1841. At that time, no government existed in the Oregon Country, as no one nation held dominion over the territory.
A group of settlers in the Willamette Valley began meeting in 1841 to discuss organizing a government for the area. These earliest documented discussions, mostly concerning forming a government, were held in an early pioneer and Native American encampment and later town known as Champoeg, Oregon. These first Champoeg Meetings eventually led to further discussions, and in 1843 the creation of the Provisional Government of Oregon. In 1846, the Oregon boundary dispute between the U.S. and Britain was settled with the signing of the Oregon Treaty. The British gained sole possession of the land north of the 49th parallel and all of Vancouver Island, with the United States receiving the territory south of that line.
The United States federal government left their part of the region unorganized for two years until news of the Whitman massacre reached the United States Congress and helped to facilitate the organization of the region into a U.S. territory. On August 14, 1848, Congress passed the Act to Establish the Territorial Government of Oregon, which created what was officially the Territory of Oregon. The Territory of Oregon originally encompassed all of the present-day states of Idaho, Oregon and Washington, as well as those parts of present-day Montana and Wyoming west of the Continental Divide. Its southern border was the 42nd parallel north (the boundary of the Adams-Onis Treaty of 1819), and it extended north to the 49th parallel. Oregon City, Oregon, was designated as the first capital.
The territorial government consisted of a governor, a marshal, a secretary, an attorney, and a three-judge supreme court. Judges on the court also sat as trial level judges as they rode circuit across the territory. All of these offices were filled by appointment by the President of the United States. The two-chamber Oregon Territorial Legislature was responsible for passing laws, with seats in both the upper-chamber council and lower-chamber house of representatives filled by local elections held each year.
Taxation took the form of an annual property tax of 0.25% for territorial purposes with an additional county tax not to exceed this amount. This tax was to be paid on all town lots and improvements, mills, carriages, clocks and watches, and livestock; farmland and farm products were not taxed. In addition, a poll tax of 50 cents for every qualified voter under age 60 was assessed and a graduated schedule of merchants’ licenses established, ranging from the peddlar’s rate of $10 per year to a $60 annual fee on firms with more than $20,000 of capital.
Oregon City served as the seat of government from 1848 to 1851, followed by Salem from 1851 to 1855. Corvallis served briefly as the capital in 1855, followed by a permanent return to Salem later that year. In 1853, the portion of the territory north of the lower Columbia River and north of the 46th parallel east of the river was organized into the Washington Territory. The Oregon Constitutional Convention was held in 1857 to draft a constitution in preparation for becoming a state, with the convention delegates approving the document in September, and then general populace approving the document in November.
On February 14, 1859, the territory entered the Union as the U.S. state of Oregon within its current boundaries. The remaining eastern portion of the territory (the portions in present-day southern Idaho and western Wyoming) was added to the Washington Territory.
1974 – Warmest reliably measured temperature below the Antarctic Circle of +59 °F (+15 °C) recorded at Vanda Station
Vanda Station was an Antarctic research base in the western highlands (Victoria Land) of the Ross Dependency, specifically on the shore of Lake Vanda, at the mouth of Onyx River, in the Wright Valley. The four original station buildings were constructed in the austral summers of 1967–1968 and 1968–1969, just prior to the first winter-over by a five-man team from January to October 19, 1969. Subsequent wintering parties occupied the station in 1970 and 1974. During summer seasons, Vanda station was fully staffed until 1991. Scientific programs principally included meteorology, hydrology, seismology, earth currents, and magnetics. The station was administered by the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR), and was supported logistically by the permanent New Zealand research base of Scott Base on Ross Island.
Vanda Station was well known for The Royal Lake Vanda Swim Club. Visitors to Lake Vanda Station could dip into the high salinity waters when the icecap edge melted out during summer to form a “moat”, and receive a Royal Lake Vanda Swim Club shoulder patch. Vanda staff would assist the melt by hacking out a “pool”. Many dignitaries and politicians were inducted into the club, The dip had to be naked (Rule 1), complete immersion (Rule 4), witnessed by a “Vandal” (Vanda Station staffer) and with no restrictions on photography (Rule 6) to qualify. Rule 10 allowed a natural figleaf, but it had to be natural and also naturally green without artificial aid.
In 1995, environment concerns resulted in the base being closed. Various activities associated with the base’s occupation, including excavations, the erection of buildings, disturbances caused by vehicle movements, the storage of consumables, waste disposal, and accidental spills, led to the effort to remove the station. Since removal, analysis of the lake water and algae was performed for a number of years to ensure the lake was not contaminated by greywater and other wastes.
Vanda Station is the location of the highest temperature ever recorded south of the Antarctic Circle, which was 59 °F (15 °C) on January 5, 1974.
There is now a street named after this base in Queenstown, New Zealand, called Vanda Place, and it is located just a few hundred metres from Scott Place.
Today, an automatic weather station is at the site of former Vanda Station, and Lake Vanda Hut, a shelter that is periodically (summer only) occupied by 2 to 8 New Zealand stream researchers.
1838 – Camille Jordan, French mathematician and academic (d. 1922)
Marie Ennemond Camille Jordan (French: [ʒɔʀdan]; 5 January 1838 – 22 January 1922) was a French mathematician, known both for his foundational work in group theory and for his influential Cours d’analyse.
Jordan was born in Lyon and educated at the École polytechnique. He was an engineer by profession; later in life he taught at the École polytechnique and the Collège de France, where he had a reputation for eccentric choices of notation.
He is remembered now by name in a number of foundational results:
The Jordan curve theorem, a topological result required in complex analysis
The Jordan normal form and the Jordan matrix in linear algebra
In mathematical analysis, Jordan measure (or Jordan content) is an area measure that predates measure theory
In group theory the Jordan–Hölder theorem on composition series is a basic result.
Jordan’s theorem on finite linear groups
Jordan’s work did much to bring Galois theory into the mainstream. He also investigated the Mathieu groups, the first examples of sporadic groups. His Traité des substitutions, on permutation groups, was published in 1870; this treatise won for Jordan the 1870 prix Poncelet.
The asteroid 25593 Camillejordan and Institut Camille Jordan (fr) are named in his honour.
1846 – Rudolf Christoph Eucken, German philosopher and author, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1926)
Rudolf Christoph Eucken (German: [ˈɔʏkn̩]; 5 January 1846 – 15 September 1926) was a German philosopher. He received the 1908 Nobel Prize for Literature “in recognition of his earnest search for truth, his penetrating power of thought, his wide range of vision, and the warmth and strength in presentation with which in his numerous works he has vindicated and developed an idealistic philosophy of life”, after he had been nominated by a member of the Swedish Academy.
Eucken was born on 5 January 1846 in Aurich, then in the Kingdom of Hanover (now Lower Saxony). His father, Ammo Becker Eucken (1792–1851) died when he was a child, and he was brought up by his mother, Ida Maria (1814–1872, née Gittermann). He was educated at Aurich, where one of his teachers was the classical philologist and philosopher Ludwig Wilhelm Maximilian Reuter (1803–1881). He studied at Göttingen University (1863–66), where Hermann Lotze was one of his teachers, and Berlin University. In the latter place, Friedrich Adolf Trendelenburg was a professor whose ethical tendencies and historical treatment of philosophy greatly attracted him.
Eucken received his Ph.D. in classical philology and ancient history at Göttingen University in 1866 with a dissertation under the title De Aristotelis dicendi ratione. However, the bent of his mind was definitely towards the philosophical side of theology. In 1871, after five years working as a school teacher at Husum, Berlin und Frankfurt, he was appointed Professor of Philosophy at the University of Basel, Switzerland, succeeding another of his former teachers at Göttingen, Gustav Teichmüller. He stayed there until 1874 when he took up a similar position at the University of Jena. He stayed there until he retired in 1920. From 1913–1914 he served as guest lecturer at New York University. During World War I, Eucken, like many of his academic colleagues, took a strong line in favour of the causes with which his country had associated itself.
Birthplace of Rudolf Eucken in Aurich, Osterstraße 27 (September 2015)
Eucken’s philosophical work is partly historical and partly constructive, the former side being predominant in his earlier, the latter in his later works. Their most striking feature is the close organic relationship between the two parts. The aim of the historical works is to show the necessary connexion between philosophical concepts and the age to which they belong; the same idea is at the root of his constructive speculation. All philosophy is philosophy of life, the development of a new culture, not mere intellectualism, but the application of a vital religious inspiration to the practical problems of society. This practical idealism Eucken described by the term “ethical activism.” In accordance with this principle, Eucken gave considerable attention to social and educational problems.
He maintained that humans have souls, and that they are therefore at the junction between nature and spirit. He believed that people should overcome their non-spiritual nature by continuous efforts to achieve a spiritual life, another aspect of his ethical activism and meaning of life.
Later life and death
He married Irene Passow (1863–1941) in 1882 and had a daughter and two sons. His son Walter Eucken became a famous founder of ordoliberal thought in economics. His son Arnold Eucken was a chemist/physicist.
Rudolf Eucken died on 15 September 1926 in Jena at the age of 80.
1909 – Stephen Cole Kleene, American mathematician and computer scientist (d. 1994)
Stephen Cole Kleene /ˈkliːniː/ KLEE-nee (January 5, 1909 – January 25, 1994) was an American mathematician. One of the students of Alonzo Church, Kleene, along with Alan Turing, Emil Post, and others, is best known as a founder of the branch of mathematical logic known as recursion theory, which subsequently helped to provide the foundations of theoretical computer science. Kleene’s work grounds the study of which functions are computable. A number of mathematical concepts are named after him: Kleene hierarchy, Kleene algebra, the Kleene star (Kleene closure), Kleene’s recursion theorem and the Kleene fixpoint theorem. He also invented regular expressions, and made significant contributions to the foundations of mathematical intuitionism.
Although his last name is commonly pronounced /ˈkliːniː/ KLEE-nee or /ˈkliːn/ kleen, Kleene himself pronounced it /ˈkleɪniː/ KLAY-nee. His son, Ken Kleene, wrote: “As far as I am aware this pronunciation is incorrect in all known languages. I believe that this novel pronunciation was invented by my father.”
Kleene was awarded the BA degree from Amherst College in 1930. He was awarded the Ph.D. in mathematics from Princeton University in 1934. His thesis, entitled A Theory of Positive Integers in Formal Logic, was supervised by Alonzo Church. In the 1930s, he did important work on Church’s lambda calculus. In 1935, he joined the mathematics department at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where he spent nearly all of his career. After two years as an instructor, he was appointed assistant professor in 1937.
While a visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, 1939–40, he laid the foundation for recursion theory, an area that would be his lifelong research interest. In 1941, he returned to Amherst College, where he spent one year as an associate professor of mathematics.
During World War II, Kleene was a lieutenant commander in the United States Navy. He was an instructor of navigation at the U.S. Naval Reserve’s Midshipmen’s School in New York, and then a project director at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C.
In 1946, Kleene returned to Wisconsin, becoming a full professor in 1948 and the Cyrus C. MacDuffee professor of mathematics in 1964. He was chair of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, 1962–63, and Dean of the College of Letters and Science from 1969 to 1974. The latter appointment he took on despite the considerable student unrest of the day, stemming from the Vietnam War. He retired from the University of Wisconsin in 1979. In 1999 the mathematics library at the University of Wisconsin was renamed in his honor.
Kleene’s teaching at Wisconsin resulted in three texts in mathematical logic, Kleene (1952, 1967) and Kleene and Vesley (1965), often cited and still in print. Kleene (1952) wrote alternative proofs to the Gödel’s incompleteness theorems that enhanced their canonical status and made them easier to teach and understand. Kleene and Vesley (1965) is the classic American introduction to intuitionist logic and mathematics.
Kleene served as president of the Association for Symbolic Logic, 1956–58, and of the International Union of History and Philosophy of Science, 1961. In 1990, he was awarded the National Medal of Science. The importance of Kleene’s work led to the saying that “Kleeneness is next to Gödelness”.
Kleene and his wife Nancy Elliott had four children. He had a lifelong devotion to the family farm in Maine. An avid mountain climber, he had a strong interest in nature and the environment, and was active in many conservation causes.
1919 – Herb Peterson, American businessman (d. 2008)
Herbert Ralph “Herb” Peterson (January 5, 1919 – March 25, 2008) was an American fast food advertising executive and food scientist most known for being the inventor of the McDonald’s Egg McMuffin in 1972. The breakfast business that he pioneered with this item had grown to an estimated $4–5 billion in annual revenues for the fast food restaurant chain McDonald’s by 1993.
Life and career
Born and raised in Chicago, Petersen, who served in the United States Marine Corps, where he attained the rank of Major in three years during World War II, began his career with McDonald’s as vice president at D’Arcy Advertising in Chicago, which was McDonald’s in-house advertising arm, Peterson coined McDonald’s first national advertising slogan, “Where Quality Starts Fresh Every Day.”
He later became a franchise co-owner and the operator of six McDonald’s restaurants in and around Santa Barbara, California.
Peterson developed the Egg McMuffin, which has become a McDonald’s breakfast signature item, in 1972. Peterson was said to like eggs benedict, so he worked to develop a breakfast item which was similar to it for the fast food chain. Peterson eventually came up with the Egg McMuffin, which was an egg sandwich consisting of an egg formed in a Teflon circle with the yolks broken, topped with Canadian bacon and a slice of cheese. The Egg McMuffin was served as an open faced sandwich on a buttered and toasted English muffin.
The Egg McMuffin was created and first sold at a McDonald’s in Santa Barbara, California (Milpas St. location with placard outside marking the location) which Peterson co-owned with his son, David Peterson.
Peterson died in Santa Barbara on March 25, 2008, at the age of 89. He was survived by his wife, son and three daughters. A memorial service for Peterson was held on April 23, 2008, in Montecito, California. Herb Peterson is the grandfather of professional surfer Lakey Peterson.
The McMuffin is a family of breakfast sandwiches in various sizes and configurations, sold by the fast-food restaurant chain McDonald’s. The Egg McMuffin is the signature breakfast sandwich. It was invented by Herb Peterson and brought into stores in 1972.
1923 – Sam Phillips, American radio host and producer, founded Sun Records (d. 2003)
Samuel Cornelius “Sam” Phillips (January 5, 1923 – July 30, 2003) was an American musician, businessman, record executive, music producer, and disc jockey who played an important role in the emergence and development of rock and roll and rockabilly as the major form of popular music in the 1950s. He was a producer, label owner, and talent scout throughout the 1940s and 1950s.
He was the founder of both Sun Studio and Sun Records in Memphis, Tennessee. Through Sun, Phillips discovered such recording talent as Howlin’ Wolf, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Johnny Cash. The height of his success culminated in his launching of Elvis Presley’s career in 1954. He is also associated with several other noteworthy rhythm and blues, country, and rock and roll musicians of the period. Phillips sold Sun in 1969 to Shelby Singleton. He was an early investor in the Holiday Inn chain of hotels. He also advocated racial equality and helped break down racial barriers in the music industry.
Phillips was the youngest of eight children, born on a farm near Florence, Alabama, to poor tenant farmers, Madge Ella (Lovelace) and Charles Tucker Phillips. As a child, he picked cotton in the fields with his parents alongside black laborers. The experience of hearing workers singing in the fields left a big impression on the young Phillips. Traveling through Memphis with his family in 1939 on the way to see a preacher in Dallas, he slipped off to look at Beale Street, at the time the heart of the city’s music scene. “I just fell totally in love,” he later recalled.
Phillips attended the former Coffee High School in Florence. He conducted the school band and had ambitions to be a criminal defense attorney. However, his father was bankrupted by the Great Depression and died in 1941, forcing Phillips to leave high school to look after his mother and aunt. To support the family Phillips worked in a grocery store and then a funeral parlor.
The Memphis Recording Service and Sun Records
Sun Studio, at junction of Sam Phillips Avenue, Memphis
In the 1940s, Phillips worked as a DJ and radio engineer for Muscle Shoals radio station WLAY (AM). According to Phillips, this radio station’s “open format” (of broadcasting music from both white and black musicians) would later inspire his work in Memphis. Beginning in 1945, he worked for four years as an announcer and sound engineer for WREC.
On January 3, 1950, Phillips opened the Memphis Recording Service at 706 Union Avenue in Memphis, Tennessee. The Memphis Recording Service let amateurs perform, which drew performers such as B.B. King, Junior Parker, and Howlin’ Wolf. Phillips then would sell their performances to larger record labels. In addition to musical performances, Phillips recorded events such as weddings and funerals, selling the recordings. The Memphis Recording Service also served as the studio for Phillips’s own label, which he launched in 1952.
Phillips combined different styles of music. He was interested in the blues and said: “The blues, it got people—black and white—to think about life, how difficult, yet also how good it can be. They would sing about it; they would pray about it; they would preach about it. This is how they relieved the burden of what existed day in and day out.”
Phillips recorded what music historian Peter Guralnick considered the first rock and roll record: “Rocket 88” by Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats, a band led by 19-year-old Ike Turner, who also wrote the song. The recording was released on the Chess/Checker record label in Chicago, in 1951. From 1950 to 1954 Phillips recorded the music of James Cotton, Rufus Thomas, Rosco Gordon, Little Milton, Bobby Blue Bland, and others. B.B. King and Howlin’ Wolf, among others, made their first recordings at his studio. Phillips deemed Howlin’ Wolf his greatest discovery, and Elvis Presley his second greatest.
Sun Records produced more Rock and Roll records than any other record label of its time during its 16-year run, producing 226 singles.
Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison
Phillips and Elvis Presley opened a new form of music. Phillips said of Elvis: “Elvis cut a ballad, which was just excellent. I could tell you, both Elvis and Roy Orbison could tear a ballad to pieces. But I said to myself, ‘You can’t do that, Sam.’ If I had released a ballad I don’t think you would have heard of Elvis Presley.”
Although much has been written about Phillips’ goals, he can be seen stating the following: “Everyone knew that I was just a struggling cat down here trying to develop new and different artists, and get some freedom in music, and tap some resources and people that weren’t being tapped.” He didn’t care about mistakes, he cared about the feel.
Phillips met Elvis through the mediation of his long-time collaborator at the Memphis Recording Service, Marion Keisker, who was already a well-known Memphis radio personality. On 18 July 1953, eighteen-year old Elvis dropped into the studio to record an acetate for his mother’s birthday; Keisker thought she heard some talent in the young truck driver’s voice, and so she turned on the tape recorder. Later, she played it for Phillips, who gradually, through Keisker’s encouragements, warmed to the idea of recording Elvis.
Elvis Presley, who recorded his version of Arthur “Big Boy” Crudup’s “That’s All Right” at Phillips’s studio, became highly successful, first in Memphis, then throughout the southern United States. He auditioned for Phillips in 1954, but it was not until he sang “That’s Alright (Mama)” that Phillips was impressed. For the first six months, the flip side, “Blue Moon of Kentucky”, his upbeat version of a Bill Monroe bluegrass song, was slightly more popular than “That’s All Right (Mama).” While still not known outside the South, Presley’s singles and regional success became a drawing card for Sun Records, as singing hopefuls soon arrived from all over the region. Singers such as Sonny Burgess (“My Bucket’s Got a Hole in It”), Charlie Rich, Junior Parker, and Billy Lee Riley recorded for Sun with some success, while others such as Jerry Lee Lewis, BB King, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, and Carl Perkins would become superstars.
Phillips’s pivotal role in the early days of rock and roll was exemplified by a celebrated jam session on December 4, 1956, which came to be known as the Million Dollar Quartet. Jerry Lee Lewis was playing piano for a Carl Perkins recording session at Phillips’s studio. When Elvis Presley walked in unexpectedly, Johnny Cash was called into the studio by Phillips, leading to an impromptu session featuring the four musicians. Phillips challenged the four to achieve gold record sales, offering a free Cadillac to the first, which Carl Perkins won. The contest is commemorated in a song by the Drive-by Truckers.
By the mid-1960s, Phillips rarely recorded. He built a satellite studio and opened radio stations, but the studio declined and he sold Sun Records to Shelby Singleton in 1969.
Phillips launched radio station WHER on October 29, 1955. Each of the young women who auditioned for the station assumed there would only be one female announcer position, as was the case with other stations at that time. Only a few days before the first broadcast did they learn of the “All Girl Radio” format. It was the first all girl radio station in the US, as almost every position at the station was held by a woman.
WHER1430 kHz AM) was the first “All-Girl” radio station when it went on the air in October 1955. Staffed almost exclusively by women (including broadcasting pioneer Vida Jane Butler), the station spawned a series of imitators, but later evolved into a mixed-gender staff rechristened WWEE.
The radio station was the brainchild of Sam Phillips, who used a portion of the $35,000 he made from the sale of Elvis Presley‘s recording contract to RCA Records to finance the station. A portion of the balance of the funding came from Holiday Inn founder Kemmons Wilson, who also provided the station’s first home, in a part of the third Holiday Inn ever built.
Ohio and Erie Canal
On February 4, 1825, the Ohio Legislature passed “An Act to provide for the Internal Improvement of the State of Ohio by Navigable Canals”. The Canal Commission was authorized to borrow $400,000 in 1825, and not more than $600,000 per year thereafter. The notes issued were to be redeemable between 1850 and 1875.
On July 4, 1825, ground was broken on the canal at Licking Summit near Newark, Ohio.
The canals were specified to have a minimum width of 40 feet (12 m) at the top, 26 feet (8 m) at the bottom, and a depth of 4 feet (1.2 m) feet minimum. These limits were often exceeded, and indeed it was cheaper to do so in most cases. For example, it might be cheaper to build one embankment and then let the water fill all the way to the adjacent foothills, perhaps hundreds of feet away, rather than build two embankments. By damming the rivers, long stretches of slackwater could be created which, with the addition of towpaths, could serve as portions of the canal. Where it made economic sense to do so, such as lock widths or portions of the canal through narrow rock or across aqueducts, the minimum widths were adhered to.
Contracts were let for the following tasks:
Grubbing and clearing
Mucking and ditching
Embankment and excavation
Locks and culverts
Initially, contractors in general proved to be inexperienced and unreliable. It was common for one job to receive 50 bids, many of them local to where the work was being performed. The chosen contractor, having underbid the contract, often would vanish in the night leaving his labor force unpaid and his contract unfulfilled. This problem was so bad that laborers refused to perform canal work for fear of not being paid. As the bidding process was improved, and more reliable contractors engaged, the situation improved.
Workers were initially paid $0.30 per day and offered a jigger of whiskey. As work progressed, and where labor was in shortage, workers could make as much as $15 per month. At that time, cash money was hard to come by in Ohio forcing much bartering. Working on the canal was appealing and attracted many farmers from their land.
On July 3, 1827 the first canal boat on the Ohio and Erie Canal left Akron, traveled through 41 locks and over 3 aqueducts along 37 miles (60 km) of canal, to arrive at Cleveland on July 4. While the average speed of 3 mph (4.8 km/h) may seem slow, canal boats could carry 10 tons of goods and were much more efficient than wagons over rutted trails.
Graph showing the annual expenditures and revenues accrued to the State of Ohio by the Ohio and Erie Canal from 1827 to 1903.
Over the next five years, more and more portions of the canal opened, with it finally being completed in 1832:
1828 opens from Akron to Massillon, Ohio. The canal is 65 miles (105 km) long.
1829 opens from Massillon to Dover, Ohio. The canal is 93 miles (150 km) long.
1830 opens from Dover to Newark, Ohio. The canal is 177 miles (285 km) long.
1831 opens from Newark to Chillicothe, Ohio. The canal is 258 miles (415 km) long.
In 1832, the Ohio and Erie Canal was completed. The entire canal system was 308 miles (496 km) long with 146 lift locks and a rise of 1,206 feet (368 m). In addition, there were five feeder canals that added 24.8 miles (39.9 km) and 6 additional locks to the system consisting of:
Tuscarawas Feeder (3.2 miles)
Walhonding Feeder (1.3 miles)
Granville Feeder (6.1 miles)
Muskinghum Side Cut (2.6 miles)
Columbus Feeder (11.6 miles)
The canal’s lock numbering system was oriented from the Lower Basin, near the southwest corner of the current Exchange and Main streets in Akron. North of the basin is Lock 1 North, and south of the basin is Lock 1 South. At this basin was the joining of the Pennsylvania and Ohio Canal.
Miami and Erie Canal
The Miami and Erie Canal was a canal in Ohio that ran about 274 miles (441 km); it was constructed from Cincinnati to Toledo  to create a water route from the Ohio River to Lake Erie. Construction on the canal began in 1825 and was completed in 1845 at a cost to the state government of $8,062,680.07. At its peak, it included 19 aqueducts, three guard locks, 103 canal locks, multiple feeder canals, and a few man-made water reservoirs. The canal climbed 395 feet (120 m) above Lake Erie and 513 feet (156 m) above the Ohio River to reach a topographical peak called the Loramie Summit, which extended 19 miles (31 km) between New Bremen, Ohio to lock 1-S in Lockington, north of Piqua, Ohio. Boats up to 80 feet long were towed along the canal by mules, horses, or oxen walking on a prepared towpath along the bank, at a rate of four to five miles per hour.
Due to competition from railroads, which began to be built in the area in the 1850s, the commercial use of the canal gradually declined during the late 19th century. It was permanently abandoned for commercial use in 1913 after a historic flood in Ohio severely damaged it. Only a small fraction of the canal survives today, along with its towpath and locks.
Because Ohio is not entirely flat, the system of locks had to be designed to act as a staircase so boats could navigate the difference in elevation. To supply water for the canal, manmade reservoirs such as Grand Lake St. Marys and Lake Loramie in Shelby County were constructed, along with several feeder canals. Indian Lake in Logan County was greatly enlarged to provide a steadier supply of water for the Sidney feeder canal.
Branch canals were built to serve as extensions from the main canal. The Warren County Canal, was a branch canal constructed from the Miami and Erie Canal at Middletown to Lebanon. This branch was opened in 1840, but remained in operation less than 15 years before being abandoned. A short branch, the Sidney or Port Jefferson feeder canal ran up the Miami Valley from Lockington through Sidney to a dam just upstream from Port Jefferson.
The following list includes measurement standards for the canal, although these varied by region of the state.
4 ft (1.2 m) water depth.
40 ft (12 m) wide at water level.
10 ft (3.0 m) wide towpath in addition to mandated outer slopes.
All slopes are 4.5 ft (1.4 m) horizontal to 4 ft (1.2 m). perpendicular.
The canal could accommodate boats up to 90 ft (27 m) long and 14 ft (4.3 m) wide. <
1872 – Gotse Delchev, Bulgarian and Macedonian revolutionary activist (d. 1903)
Georgi Nikolov Delchev (Bulgarian/Macedonian: Георги/Ѓорѓи Николов Делчев, known as Gotse Delchev, also spelled Goce Delčev, Cyrillic: Гоце Делчев, originally spelled in older Bulgarian orthography: Гоце Дѣлчевъ; (February 4, 1872 – May 4, 1903) was an important revolutionary figure in Ottoman-ruled Macedonia and Thrace at the turn of the 20th century. He was one of the leaders of what is known today as Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (IMRO), a paramilitary organization active in Ottoman territories in the Balkans, at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century.
Born in Kukush, then in the Salonica Vilayet of the Ottoman Empire, in his youth he was inspired by the ideals of revolutionaries such as Vasil Levski and Hristo Botev, who envisioned the creation of a Bulgarian republic of ethnic and religious equality, as part of an imagined Balkan Federation. Delchev completed his secondary education in the Bulgarian Men’s High School of Thessaloniki and entered the Military School of His Princely Highness in Sofia, but he was dismissed from there, because of his leftist political persuasions. Then he returned to Ottoman Macedonia as a Bulgarian teacher, and immediately became an activist of the newly-found revolutionary movement in 1894.
Although considering himself to be an inheritor of the Bulgarian revolutionary traditions, as a committed republican Delchev was disillusioned by the reality in the post-liberation Bulgarian monarchy. Also by him, as by many Macedonian Bulgarians, originating from an area with mixed population, the idea of being ‘Macedonian’ acquired the importance of a certain native loyalty, that constructed a specific spirit of “local patriotism” and “multi-ethnic regionalism”. He maintained the slogan promoted by William Ewart Gladstone, “Macedonia for the Macedonians”, including different nationalities inhabiting the area. In this way, his outlook included a wide range of such disparate ideas as Bulgarian patriotism, Macedonian regionalism, anti-nationalism and incipient socialism.
As a result, his political agenda became the establishment through revolution of an autonomous Macedono-Adrianopolitan supranational state into the framework of the Ottoman Empire, as a prelude to its incorporation within a future Balkan Federation. He revised the Organization’s program, emphasizing the importance of cooperation among all ethnic groups in the territories concerned in order to obtain political autonomy. Delchev also launched the establishment of a secret revolutionary network, that would prepare the population for an armed uprising against the Ottoman rule. However, he opposed the IMRO Central Committee’s plan for a mass uprising in the summer of 1903, favoring terrorist and guerilla tactics. Nevertheless, he was killed by an Ottoman unit in May. Thus the liberation movement lost its most important organizer, at the eve of the Ilinden–Preobrazhenie Uprising.
Today Gotse Delchev is considered as a national hero in Bulgaria, as well as in the Republic of Macedonia, where it is claimed that he was among the founders of the Macedonian national movement. Despite such Macedonian historical interpretations, Delchev had Bulgarian national identity and viewed his compatriots as Bulgarians. The designation Macedonian according to the then used ethnic terminology included Albanians, Bulgarians, Greeks, Turks, Vlachs, and Serbs, and when applied to the local Slavs, it meant a regional Bulgarian identity. However, contrary to Bulgarian assertions, his autonomist ideas of a separate Macedonian (and Adrianopolitan) political entity, have stimulated the development of contemporary Macedonian nationalism.
1903 – Alexander Imich, Polish-American chemist, parapsychologist, and academic (d. 2014)
Alexander Herbert Imich (February 4, 1903 – June 8, 2014) was a Polish Jewish-born American chemist, parapsychologist, and writer, who was the president of the Anomalous Phenomena Research Center in New York City. He was born in 1903 in Częstochowa, Poland (then a part of Russian Empire) to a Jewish family.
Imich, a supercentenarian, became the oldest living man after the death of Arturo Licata, of Italy, on April 24, 2014. Until his own death a little more than a month later, at the age of 111 years, 124 days, Imich was certified by Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest living man.
Imich was also the last surviving veteran of the Polish-Soviet War.
Early war service
Imich stated that, at age 15, he and the rest of his class joined the Polish forces to fight the Bolsheviks in 1918. His older brother served as instructor in the automobile division, so Imich learned to drive trucks for the army until the Bolshevik forces were pushed back and Imich returned to school.
He earned a Ph.D in zoology at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków in 1929, but as he could not find an academic position in zoology, he switched to chemistry. During the 1920s and 1930s he did some research on a medium, Matylda, for the Polish Society for Psychical Research. He published a report in 1932 in a German journal, Zeitschrift für Parapsychologie, but all of the unpublished notes and photos from the research were lost during World War II.
World War II
During World War II, Imich and his wife Wela (pronounced Vela) fled to Soviet-occupied Białystok, where he was employed as a chemist. The couple were later interned in a labor camp for the duration of the war due to their refusal to accept Soviet citizenship. They were eventually freed and chose to emigrate to the U.S. in 1951, as almost all of their Polish relatives and friends had died in the Holocaust.
Life in the United States
In 1952, Imich and his wife Wela (died 1986) emigrated to the United States, first to Pennsylvania and then to New York, dividing their time between both places. To make a living, Imich initially took up chemistry, but once Wela made a career for herself as a psychologist in 1965, he turned to parapsychology. After becoming a widower in 1986, he continued his lifelong interest in parapsychology, giving out the Imich prize for parapsychology research for several years until he began experiencing financial problems.
Imich wrote numerous papers for journals in the field and edited a book, Incredible Tales of the Paranormal which was published by Bramble Books in 1995. He formed the Anomalous Phenomena Research Center in 1999, trying to find a way to produce “The Crucial Demonstration”, the goal of which is to demonstrate the reality of paranormal phenomena to mainstream scientists and the general public. In 2012, he began to transfer the records of his research into the paranormal to the University of Manitoba Department of Archives and Special Collections. He practiced calorie restriction and attributed his longevity to this.
Imich died on June 8, 2014 at 9:03 AM from natural causes at the age of 111. He was succeeded as the world’s oldest man by Sakari Momoi of Japan (born February 5, 1903, one day after Imich).
1929 – Paul Burlison, American rockabilly guitarist (d. 2003)
Paul Burlison (February 4, 1929 – September 27, 2003) was an American pioneer rockabilly guitarist and a founding member of The Rock and Roll Trio. Burlison was born in Brownsville, Tennessee, where he was exposed to music at an early age. After a stint in the United States Military, Burlison teamed up with Johnny and Dorsey Burnette to form The Rock and Roll Trio. The band released several singles, but failed to attain chart success. Paul is sometimes credited with being the first guitarist to intentionally record with a distorted electric guitar on the 1956 recordings, “Lonesome Train on a Lonesome Track” and “Honey Hush.” The Trio disbanded in the fall of 1957 and Burlison moved back to Tennessee to start a family. There he started his own electrical subcontracting business which he ran faithfully for twenty years, taking a break when the Trio reunited in the early 1980s. He released his only solo album in 1997, which received positive reviews. Burlison remained active in the music scene until his death in 2003.
Burlison and his family lived in Brownsville until 1937. During the floods of that year, miserable economic conditions prompted the Burlison family to move to Memphis, Tennessee. In 1938, his brother-in-law, Earl Brooks began to teach him to play the guitar. As well as learning Brooks’ Country influenced techniques, he also drew inspiration from watching Jesse Lee and Juanita Denson perform. Later, he would frequent the Blues joints along Beale Street. While he was still in high school, he would travel to the outskirts of West Memphis, Arkansas, to watch Chester Burnett (“Howlin’ Wolf”) play.
Burlison also developed an interest in boxing and began training at the Dave Wells Community Center under the instruction of trainer, Jim Denson. He was to win the local welterweight championship, and was runner-up in the All-Navy Tournament 1947-48. Whilst competing in the 1949 Golden Gloves tournament, Denson introduced him to another young boxer, Dorsey Burnette.
Dorsey Burnette would become a Golden Gloves welterweight champion. He had a younger brother, Johnny Burnette, who was a Golden Gloves lightweight champion fighter. Both brothers had a deep interest in music and it was through their mutual interest in both music and boxing that the three were to become close friends.
Toward the end of the World War II Paul Burlison enlisted in the United States Navy (1946) He was only 17 years of age at the time and received an honorable discharge in 1949.
After a brief trip to California to join the Burnette Brothers, Burlison returned to Memphis and retired from the music business to start a family. In 1960, he also started his own electrical subcontracting company, “Safety Electrical” devoting his time and energy to his business and to his family for the next twenty years. His company was successful and in subsequent years, he also operated a mail-order business specializing in rare recordings.
The Burnette brothers moved to California and continued to have sporadic success in the music industry until the end of the decade. In 1960, Johnny Burnette had two major hits as a solo artist with “Dreamin'” and “You’re Sixteen,” and Dorsey Burnette had Top 30 and Top 50 hits, again as a solo artist, with “Tall Oak Tree” and “Hey Little One”.
After “Dreamin’” had become a hit, Johnny Burnette offered Burlison a spot in his road band, but Burlison refused. By 1963, Johnny’s career was in decline and in an effort to revive it he wanted to reprise some of the old material. Burlison joined Johnny on a short swing through the Mid South after his regular guitarist broke two of his fingers. They even planned to go to England together, but Burlison fell ill and he went back to Memphis and his contracting business.
Rock and roll revival
Paul Burlison returned to the music scene in the 1980s, first with Johnny Black and Tony Austin in a recreation of the “Trio”. He also launched his own Rock-A-Billy record label to release Johnny Burnette’s Rock and Roll Trio and Their Rockin’ Friends from Memphis, an all-star tribute to the memories of Johnny and Dorsey Burnette featuring local legends like Eddie Bond, Jim Dickinson and Charlie Feathers.
In 1986, Burlison joined the Sun Rhythm Section, an oldies group, which included amongst others D J Fontana, Elvis’s former drummer. In 1990, he signed on with Rocky Burnette’s rockabilly revival band.
In 1997, Burlison cut his first ever solo LP Train Kept A-Rollin’ on Sweetfish Records as a tribute to The Rock and Roll Trio. The LP contained eleven tracks, three of which, “Train Kept A-Rollin'”, “Lonesome Tears in My Eyes” and “Lonesome Train (on a Lonesome Track)”, had been featured on The Rock and Roll Trio’s original 1956 album. The album featured such guest artists as Rocky Burnette (Johnny’s son), Billy Burnette (Dorsey’s son) of Fleetwood Mac, Rick Danko and Levon Helm of The Band, David Hidalgo, Cesar Rosas, and Conrad Lozano of Los Lobos, Mavis Staples and Kim Wilson of The Fabulous Thunderbirds.
Death and legacy
Paul Burlison died on September 27, 2003 in Horn Lake, Mississippi after a long battle with colon cancer. He was interred in Hinds Chapel Cemetery, Lake Cormorant, Mississippi. Rocky and Billy Burnette helped eulogize their fathers’ band mate at the funeral.
Many guitarists have claimed to have been influenced by Paul Burlison. These include Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton. Additionally, The Beatles, The Yardbirds, Led Zeppelin and Aerosmith have played cover versions of The Rock and Roll Trio’s hits, often with special emphasis on Burlison’s guitar riffs.
Paul Burlison was also a mentor to the Rockabilly band The Dempseys (Brad Birkedahl, “Slick” Joe Fick and Ron Perrone Jr). The Dempseys have had modest success around the world for their rockabilly style, honed around Memphis and alongside a willing mentor in Burlison. They also played Elvis Presley’s band in the Oscar-winning film Walk the Line. Burlison played on their first album, a cassette album recorded at Sam Phillips’ Studios in Memphis, TN. He also was pictured on their first CD album, Drinking Songs for Your Grandparents and provided an introductory track, playing on a few more. That cover also pictured Cordell Jackson.
Paul Burlison’s pioneering contribution to rock-and-roll has been recognized by the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.
Caterina Kostoula How Stand-up Comedy Taught Me That Approval Is Overrated
Isn’t the pursuit of approval a basic human need, you might ask? The answer is yes. When we’re children, we learn to seek our parents’ approval as a means of survival. That’s why, as adults, negative feedback can trigger us into fight-or-flight mode.