FYI June 02 & 03, 2019

On This Day

1763 – Pontiac’s Rebellion: At what is now Mackinaw City, Michigan, Chippewas capture Fort Michilimackinac by diverting the garrison’s attention with a game of lacrosse, then chasing a ball into the fort.
Pontiac’s War (also known as Pontiac’s Conspiracy or Pontiac’s Rebellion) was launched in 1763 by a loose confederation of elements of Native American tribes, primarily from the Great Lakes region, the Illinois Country, and Ohio Country who were dissatisfied with British postwar policies in the Great Lakes region after the British victory in the French and Indian War (1754–1763). Warriors from numerous tribes joined the uprising in an effort to drive British soldiers and settlers out of the region. The war is named after the Odawa leader Pontiac, the most prominent of many native leaders in the conflict.

The war began in May 1763 when Native Americans, offended by the policies of British General Jeffrey Amherst, attacked a number of British forts and settlements. Eight forts were destroyed, and hundreds of colonists were killed or captured, with many more fleeing the region. Hostilities came to an end after British Army expeditions in 1764 led to peace negotiations over the next two years. Native Americans were unable to drive away the British, but the uprising prompted the British government to modify the policies that had provoked the conflict.

Warfare on the North American frontier was brutal, and the killing of prisoners, the targeting of civilians, and other atrocities were widespread. The ruthlessness and treachery of the conflict was a reflection of a growing divide between the separate populations of the British colonists and Native Americans. Contrary to popular belief, the British government did not issue the Royal Proclamation of 1763 in reaction to Pontiac’s War, though the conflict did provide an impetus for the application of the Proclamation’s Indian clauses.[3] This proved unpopular with British colonists, and may have been one of the early contributing factors to the American Revolution.


1839 – In Humen, China, Lin Tse-hsü destroys 1.2 million kilograms of opium confiscated from British merchants, providing Britain with a casus belli to open hostilities, resulting in the First Opium War.

The First Opium War (Chinese: 第一次鴉片戰爭; pinyin: Dìyīcì Yāpiàn Zhànzhēng), also known as the Opium War or the Anglo-Chinese War, was a series of military engagements fought between the United Kingdom and the Qing dynasty of China over diplomatic relations, trade, and the administration of justice in China.[7]

In the 17th and 18th centuries, the demand for Chinese goods (particularly silk, porcelain, and tea) in Europe created a trade imbalance between Qing Imperial China and Great Britain. European silver flowed into China through the Canton System, which confined incoming foreign trade to the southern port city of Canton. To counter this imbalance, the British East India Company began to grow opium in India and smuggle them into China illegally. The influx of narcotics reversed the Chinese trade surplus, drained the economy of silver, and increased the numbers of opium addicts inside the country, outcomes that worried Chinese officials.

In 1839, the Daoguang Emperor, rejecting proposals to legalize and tax opium, appointed viceroy Lin Zexu to go to Canton to halt the opium trade completely[8]. Lin wrote to Queen Victoria an open letter in an appeal to her moral responsibility to stop the opium trade.[9] When he failed to get a response, he initially attempted to get foreign companies to forfeit their opium stores in exchange for tea, but this ultimately failed too. Then Lin resorted to using force in the western merchants’ enclave. He confiscated all supplies and ordered a blockade of foreign ships to get them to surrender their opium supply. Lin confiscated 20,283 chests of opium (approximately 1210 tons or 2.66 million pounds)[10].

The British government responded by dispatching a military force to China and in the ensuing conflict, the Royal Navy used its naval and gunnery power to inflict a series of decisive defeats on the Chinese Empire,[7] a tactic later referred to as gunboat diplomacy.

In 1842, the Qing dynasty was forced to sign the Treaty of Nanking—the first of what the Chinese later called the unequal treaties—which granted an indemnity and extraterritoriality to Britain, opened five treaty ports to foreign merchants, and ceded Hong Kong Island to the British Empire. The failure of the treaty to satisfy British goals of improved trade and diplomatic relations led to the Second Opium War (1856–60), and the perceived weakness of the Qing dynasty resulted in social unrest within China, namely the Taiping Rebellion, during which the Qing dynasty fought against the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom.[11] In China, the war is considered the beginning of modern Chinese history.[12]


Born On This Day

1865 – Adelaide Casely-Hayford, Sierra Leone Creole advocate and activist for cultural nationalism (d. 1960)[2]
Adelaide Casely-Hayford, MBE (née Smith; 2 June 1868 – 24 January 1960),[1] was a Sierra Leone Creole advocate, an activist for cultural nationalism, educator, short story writer, and feminist. Casely-Hayford was committed to public service and worked to improve the conditions of black men and women. As a pioneer of women’s education in Sierra Leone, she played a key role in popularizing Pan-Africanist and feminist politics during the early nineteen hundreds.[2] She established a school for girls in 1923 called Girl’s Vocational and Training School in Freetown, to instill cultural and racial pride during the colonial years under British rule. Promoting the preservation of Sierra Leone national identity and cultural heritage, in 1925 she wore a traditional African costume to attend a reception in honor of the Prince of Wales, where she created a sensation.


1873 – Otto Loewi, German-American pharmacologist and psychobiologist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1961)
Otto Loewi (3 June 1873 – 25 December 1961)[4] was a German-born pharmacologist and psychobiologist who discovered the role of acetylcholine as an endogenous neurotransmitter. For his discovery he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1936, which he shared with Sir Henry Dale, who was a lifelong friend who helped to inspire the neurotransmitter experiment.[5] Loewi met Dale in 1902 when spending some months in Ernest Starling’s laboratory at University College, London.



By Kim Severson: Leah Chase, Creole Chef Who Fed Presidents and Freedom Riders, Dies at 96

Leah Chase (January 6, 1923 – June 1, 2019) was an American chef based in New Orleans, Louisiana. An author and television personality, she was known as the Queen of Creole Cuisine, advocating both African-American art and Creole cooking. Her restaurant, Dooky Chase, was known as a gathering place during the 1960s among many who participated in the Civil Rights Movement,[1] and was known as a gallery due to its extensive African-American art collection. In 2018 it was named one of the 40 most important restaurants of the past 40 years by Food & Wine.

Chase was the recipient of a multitude of awards and honors. In her 2002 biography, Chase’s awards and honors occupy over two pages.[2] Chase was inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America in 2010.[3] She was honored with a lifetime achievement award from the Southern Foodways Alliance in 2000.[4] Chase received honorary degrees from Tulane University, Dillard University,[5][6] Our Lady of Holy Cross College, Madonna College,[7] Loyola University New Orleans,[8] and Johnson & Wales University. She was awarded Times-Picayune Loving Cup Award in 1997.[9][10] The Southern Food and Beverage Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana named a permanent gallery in Chase’s honor in 2009.[2]

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