FYI July 29 & 30, 2021

On This Day

1858 – United States and Japan sign the Harris Treaty.
The Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Japan and the United States (日米修好通商条約, Nichibei Shūkō Tsūshō Jōyaku), also called the Harris Treaty, was signed on the deck of the USS Powhatan in Edo (now Tokyo) Bay on July 29, 1858. It opened the ports of Kanagawa and four other Japanese cities to trade and granted extraterritoriality to foreigners, among a number of trading stipulations.


762 – Baghdad is founded.
Baghdad (/ˈbæɡdæd, bəɡˈdæd/; Arabic: بَغْدَاد‎ [baɣˈdaːd] (About this soundlisten), Kurdish: بەغداد) is the capital of Iraq and is, after Cairo, the second largest city of the Arab world and fourth largest in the Middle East with a city population of 8.1 million. Located along the Tigris, near the ancient ruins of the Akkadian city of Babylon and the Sassanid Persian capital of Ctesiphon, Baghdad was founded in the 8th century and became the capital of the Abbasid Caliphate and the Caliphate’s most notable major development project. Within a short time, Baghdad evolved into a significant cultural, commercial, and intellectual center of the Muslim world. This, in addition to housing several key academic institutions, including the House of Wisdom, as well as hosting a multiethnic and multi-religious environment, garnered the city a worldwide reputation as the “Center of Learning”.

Baghdad was the largest city in the world for much of the Abbasid era during the Islamic Golden Age, peaking at a population of more than a million.[3] The city was largely destroyed at the hands of the Mongol Empire in 1258, resulting in a decline that would linger through many centuries due to frequent plagues and multiple successive empires. With the recognition of Iraq as an independent state (formerly the British Mandate of Mesopotamia) in 1932, Baghdad gradually regained some of its former prominence as a significant center of Arab culture, with a population variously estimated at 6 or over 7 million.[note 1] Compared to its large population, it has a small area at just 673 square kilometers (260 sq mi).

The city has faced severe infrastructural damage, due to the Iraq War that lasted from 2003 until 2011, and the subsequent insurgency and later the renewed war that lasted from 2013 until 2017, resulting in a substantial loss of cultural heritage and historical artifacts. During this period, Baghdad had one of the highest rates of terrorist attacks in the world, however terrorist attacks have been rare since the territorial defeat of ISIL in Iraq in late 2017.[8]



Born On This Day

1940 – Betty Harris, American chemist
Betty Wright Harris is an American chemist. She is known for her work on the chemistry of explosives completed at Los Alamos National Laboratory. She patented a spot test for detecting 1,3,5-triamino-2,4,6-trinitrobenzene (TATB) in the field, which is used by the Federal Department of Homeland Security to screen for nitroaromatic explosives.[1][2]


1942 – Pollyanna Pickering, English environmentalist and painter (d. 2018)
Pollyanna Pickering (30 July 1942 – 29 March 2018)[1] was an English wildlife artist and environmentalist.[2]

Pollyanna Pickering was born in Leeds, Yorkshire and was a wildlife artist who went on many expeditions around the world to study animals in their natural habitats. She studied at Rotherham Art School and later at the Central School of Art and Design in London. In 2008 The University of Derby conferred the honorary degree of master of the University.

During a career spanning 50 years her original artwork was exhibited in galleries internationally, including the Tryon Gallery London and The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum Tucson Arizona. She was signed to publishers Millwheel Prints (1970 – 1980) Drayco (1982 – 1990) and Otter House Ltd (1990 – present) who continue to publish cards, calendars and giftware which sells in eighty countries worldwide. In 2008 the Documentary about her artwork Made in England [3] was broadcast on BBC1.

She won numerous awards including the AFC Simon Combes Conservation award (2012) which recognises conservation through artistic excellence, and held the role of Patron of The Wildlife Art Society International.[4]

In 2000 she established The Pollyanna Pickering Foundation to raise funds and campaign for conservation and animal welfare worldwide.

She was active with many wildlife charities acting as Patron of The Badger Trust and The Born Free Foundation [5] [6] among many others.

She was married to Industrial designer Ken Pickering (1936 – 1978) and has one daughter Anna-Louise. Anna-Louise continues as President of the Pollyanna Pickering Foundation.

Pickering died on 29 March 2018 in Sheffield, England, at the age of 75.[7][8][9]


By Ted Mills, Open Culture: Don Felder Plays “Hotel California” at the The Metropolitan Museum of Art, with a Double-Neck Guitar



By Little Lightning Bug, Ocean in a Bottle With Moon Jellyfish Pendant
By JGJMatt: Geode Slice Clock


I Wash You Dry: Zucchini Recipes + More
By Ronna Farley, Over-Loaded Fresh Tomato Sauce
I Wash You Dry: Quick Taco Salad Recipe
By Chocolate Covered Katie: Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce
By Chocolate Covered Katie: Deep Dish Cookie Pie
By Betty Crocker Kitchens: Summer Desserts to Please Every Palate




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