FYI December 29, 2020

On This Day

1845 – The United States annexes the Republic of Texas.[1]
The Republic of Texas (Spanish: República de Tejas) was a sovereign state in North America that existed from March 2, 1836, to February 19, 1846, although Mexico considered it a rebellious province during its entire existence. It was bordered by Mexico to the west and southwest, the Gulf of Mexico to the southeast, the two U.S. states of Louisiana and Arkansas to the east and northeast, and United States territories encompassing parts of the current U.S. states of Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming, and New Mexico to the north and west. The citizens of the republic were known as Texians.

The region of the Mexican state of Coahuila y Tejas, now commonly referred to as Mexican Texas, declared its independence from Mexico during the Texas Revolution in 1835–1836, when the Centralist Republic of Mexico abolished autonomy from states of the Mexican federal republic. The major fighting in the Texas war of independence ended on April 21, 1836, but the Mexican Congress refused to recognize the independence of the Republic of Texas, since the agreement was signed by Mexican President General Antonio López de Santa Anna under duress as prisoner of the Texians. There were intermittent conflicts between Mexico and Texas into the 1840s. The United States recognized the Republic of Texas in March 1837 but declined to annex the territory.[3]

The Republic-claimed borders were based upon the Treaties of Velasco between the newly created Texas Republic and General Santa Anna, who had been captured in battle. The eastern boundary had been defined by the Adams–Onís Treaty of 1819 between the United States and Spain, which recognized the Sabine River as the eastern boundary of Spanish Texas and western boundary of the Missouri Territory. Under the 1819 Adams–Onís Treaty, before Mexico’s 1821 independence, the United States had renounced its claim to Spanish land to the east of the Rocky Mountains and to the north of the Rio Grande, which it claimed to have acquired as part of the Louisiana Purchase of 1803.

The republic’s southern and western boundary with Mexico was disputed throughout the republic’s existence, since Mexico disputed the independence of Texas. Texas claimed the Rio Grande as its southern boundary, while Mexico insisted that the Nueces River was the boundary. In practice, much of the disputed territory was occupied by the Comanche and outside the control of either state, but Texian claims included the eastern portions of New Mexico, which was administered by Mexico throughout this period.

Texas was annexed by the United States on December 29, 1845[4] and was admitted to the Union as the 28th state on that day, with the transfer of power from the Republic to the new state of Texas formally taking place on February 19, 1846.[5] However, the United States inherited the southern and western border dispute with Mexico, which had refused to recognize Texas’ independence or U.S. offers to purchase the territory. Texas annexation was a trigger for the Mexican–American War (1846–1848).


2006 – The UK settles its Anglo-American loan, post-WWII loan debt.
The Anglo-American Loan Agreement[1] was a post–World War II loan made to the United Kingdom by the United States on 15 July 1946, enabling its battered economy to keep afloat. The loan was negotiated by British economist John Maynard Keynes and American diplomat William L. Clayton. Problems arose on the American side, with many in Congress reluctant, and with sharp differences between the treasury and state departments. The loan was for $3.75 billion at a low 2% interest rate; Canada loaned an additional US$1.19 billion. The British economy in 1947 was hurt by a provision that called for convertibility into dollars of the wartime sterling balances the British had borrowed from India and others, but by 1948 Marshall Plan money was flowing that did not have to be repaid. The entire loan was paid off in 2006, after it was extended six years.


Born On This Day

1943 – Molly Bang, American author and illustrator
Molly Garrett Bang (born December 29, 1943) is an American illustrator. For her illustration of children’s books she has been a runner-up for the American Caldecott Medal three times and for the British Greenaway Medal once. Announced June 2015, her 1996 picture book Goose is the 2016 Phoenix Picture Book Award winner – that is, named by the Children’s Literature Association the best English-language children’s picture book that did not win a major award when it was published twenty years earlier.[2]




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By Ted Mills, Open Culture: The Ultimate 80s Medley: A Nostalgia-Inducing Performance of A-Ha, Tears for Fears, Depeche Mode, Peter Gabriel, Van Halen & More
That’s What I’m Talking About: Tell Me Something Tuesday: December 29, 2020

1. The Latest Massage Trend: Snakes

Fangs for the endorphins. Snake massage is gaining popularity across the world, with clients in Indonesia, Egypt, Brazil and the U.S. allowing pythons and other non-venomous ophidians to slither all over their oiled backs in a procedure that’s purported to help with joint and muscle pain. Some clients even reported that their nervousness about snakes helped them in the long run, as facing the fear gave them a feeling of self-confidence and accomplishment along with the relaxation of a massage.

Sources: NY Post, WPTV

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