Forgotten History

maximus otter

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A much less happy piece of American forgotten history.

The deadliest school massacre in American history? Not really a pub-quiz question, unless your pub was the Cemetery Inn, or something.

Try getting the decade right . . .

1920s? You watched the video first! Or live in Michigan.

Kehoe, the culprit - no question about it - was an ageing, disappointed politician, not the usual INCEL type. :(

An interesting article with details about Kehoe and his crime.

maximus otter
 

ramonmercado

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In the midst of an article about Roddy Doyle we discover an interesting chunk of history.

While the phone book may have helped Roddy Doyle, it did Thomas E Dewey no favours at all.

The twice-failed US presidential candidate was bedevilled by the telephone book, according to writer Ammon Shea. And Mr Shea knows more than most about this subject as he is author of The Phone Book – the Curious History of the Book that Everyone Uses but No One Reads. (He has a slight obsession with books that everyone uses but no one reads, having previously written a book on reading the Oxford English Dictionary. All 21,730 pages of it.)


In The Phone Book, Shea recalls that when Thomas Dewey first ran for election in 1944, Life magazine interviewed him. The Republican governor of New York state needed all the help he could get as he was running against incumbent Franklin D Roosevelt who was seeking his fourth term.


The Life feature was a favourable piece, accompanied by a photo spread in the governor’s mansion in Albany. However, the last photograph may have been his undoing. It showed him seated at a giant desk, with a caption explaining that he had to sit on two telephone books because the desk and chair were so large.

When it was published, The New Yorker speculated that the photo of “little Tom Dewey on two telephone books” probably put an end to his chances for the presidency. And indeed, he did not win the race.

Shea writes that Dewey was again betrayed by the telephone book, four years later. He was up against Harry Truman this time and throughout the campaign the polls and political analysts had consistently put him ahead of Truman. On election night, the Chicago Daily Tribune editorial team took a huge chance when they put the early edition to bed with the caption “Dewey Defeats Truman”. But he didn’t, and Truman secured 303 electoral college votes to Dewey’s 189.

According to Shea, while there were many reasons why everyone got the results wrong, one of them was due to an over-reliance on the phone book.

Pollsters called random numbers plucked from telephone books across the country, in what they thought was a representative sample.
But this was 1948 and telephones were mostly the preserve of the wealthy, so the results were skewed. Dewey was lulled into a false sense of security from early in the campaign and once again, the treacherous telephone book had an invisible hand in his undoing.

https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/i-m-in-the-book-alison-healy-on-the-phone-book-1.4508934
 

ramonmercado

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She deserves a plaque.

A plaque commemorating an Irish woman who came within inches of killing Benito Mussolini has been approved by a Dublin council committee.

One of the bullets fired by Violet Gibson grazed the Italian leader's nose.

The memorial is set to be erected at 12 Merrion Square, the site of her childhood home. Independent Mannix Flynn proposed the motion, and it was passed by the Commemoration and Naming Committee. The committee passed the motion unanimously.

Violet Gibson's assassination attempt was made on 7 April 1926, when she was 50 years old. She came from a privileged Anglo-Irish background, and had been a debutante in the court of Queen Victoria. Following the attempted shooting, she was returned to England, and spent the rest of her life in St Andrew's Hospital, a mental asylum in Northampton, until her death in 1956.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-56527826
 

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https://www.theguardian.com/society...ed-to-smallpox-vaccine-75-years-before-jenner

It was a daring and dangerous experiment that paved the way for the development of the first safe vaccine and saved countless lives. Yet when Lady Mary Wortley Montagu deliberately infected her own daughter with a tiny dose of smallpox – successfully inoculating the three-year-old child in 1721 – her ideas were dismissed and she was denounced by 18th-century society as an “ignorant woman” .

Three hundred years later, on the anniversary of that first groundbreaking inoculation on English soil, a new biography will aim to raise the profile of Wortley Montagu and reassert her rightful place in history as a trailblazing 18th-century scientist and early feminist.
 

maximus otter

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She deserves a plaque.

A plaque commemorating an Irish woman who came within inches of killing Benito Mussolini has been approved by a Dublin council committee.

One of the bullets fired by Violet Gibson grazed the Italian leader's nose.

The memorial is set to be erected at 12 Merrion Square, the site of her childhood home. Independent Mannix Flynn proposed the motion, and it was passed by the Commemoration and Naming Committee. The committee passed the motion unanimously.

Violet Gibson's assassination attempt was made on 7 April 1926, when she was 50 years old. She came from a privileged Anglo-Irish background, and had been a debutante in the court of Queen Victoria. Following the attempted shooting, she was returned to England, and spent the rest of her life in St Andrew's Hospital, a mental asylum in Northampton, until her death in 1956.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-56527826

l wouldn’t have thought that honouring insane people who attempt political assassinations established a great precedent, hindsight notwithstanding.

Are we to see blue plaques set up for Daniel M’Naghten or John Bellingham?

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Kondoru

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Given the Wokeness today I myself would steer clear.
 

ramonmercado

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l wouldn’t have thought that honouring insane people who attempt political assassinations established a great precedent, hindsight notwithstanding.

Are we to see blue plaques set up for Daniel M’Naghten or John Bellingham?

maximus otter

She may not have been insane and she was attempting to assassinate a fascist dictator.
 

CarlosTheDJ

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Ex7S3fSXEAA2sde.jpg


At least Bryan got a James Last tape out of it - small wins.
 

uair01

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Stormkhan

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Reading that letter made me look up at the silver disk that was awarded to the management of The Motors on the sales success of "Airport". I used to have the one awarded at the same time to the band but financial constraints forced me to sell that one. It raised more money than the management's.
 

Cochise

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With the critique that the lead singer sounded like "Frankie Vaughan locked in a haunted house"? :hahazebs:
I didn't mean i agreed with the criticism. But Roxy Music were a bit of a shock to the system - at first. I don't think any of our rejection letters ran to more than a paragraph.
 

Mythopoeika

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Reading that letter made me look up at the silver disk that was awarded to the management of The Motors on the sales success of "Airport". I used to have the one awarded at the same time to the band but financial constraints forced me to sell that one. It raised more money than the management's.
You managed The Motors?
They were good.
 

Stormkhan

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Nah. The closest I've ever been to the music business was I worked for a firm that supplied and fitted music studios and sound equipment (thus meeting a few celebs).
I actually purchased the two framed disks from a local (Fulham Road) second-hand shop for £5 each. :) I got 'em because I'm a fan of the group.
 

Mythopoeika

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Nah. The closest I've ever been to the music business was I worked for a firm that supplied and fitted music studios and sound equipment (thus meeting a few celebs).
I actually purchased the two framed disks from a local (Fulham Road) second-hand shop for £5 each. :) I got 'em because I'm a fan of the group.
Wow, that was a bargain.
 

Frideswide

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l wouldn’t have thought that honouring insane people who attempt political assassinations established a great precedent, hindsight notwithstanding.

do take your point. However, given the long history of locking people away under the label of insanity I think she may well not have been insane at the start of her incarceration.
 

uair01

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I'm reading this great book and listening to the author's lectures:
Der Dreißigjährige Krieg: Europäische Katastrophe, deutsches Trauma 1618 – 1648: Amazon.de: Münkler, Herfried: Bücher

Münkler mentions here the small anecdote of the writer Franco Sacchetti from the 14th century: "Two Franciscans met (...) the English mercenary leader John Hawkwood (...). They greeted (him) according to their habit with a joyful "God give you peace, Monsignor!" and were all the more frightened when Hawkwood answered them with a dry "God take your alms!" Why he wished them this, they asked fearfully (...). "How can you believe," says the Condottiere, "to say something good that you come to me and say that God may starve me to death. Don't you know that I live from war and peace would ruin me?""
 

IbisNibs

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At least Bryan got a James Last tape out of it - small wins.
James Last's Polka Party, now available on YouTube:

The musicians seem capable and conscientious, but there is no polka in the Polka Party, only a tepid imitation of the Tijuana Brass.
 

maximus otter

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...the English mercenary leader John Hawkwood. “Don't you know that I live from war and peace would ruin me?""

Hawkwood was a hard man. l’m sure that it was he to whom a contemporary wished to speak after a savage day’s jousting. He found Hawkwood in the armourer’s tent, with his helmeted head resting on the anvil, while the artificer tried to beat the mangled helmet back into some sort of shape in order that Hawkwood could take it off!

maximus otter
 
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uair01

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This morning I learned that Frederick the Great of Prussia was (almost openly ***) gay! Wow!

*** I guess that only seeing your wife at official ceremonies, never impregnating her and filling your gardens with statues of Greek male couples would not have gone unnoticed ...
 
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IbisNibs

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Not sure if this is the best place for this, altho' it certainly offers food for thought on the Human Condition, and I think will be of interest to anyone interested in obscure tragic histories, criminal and natural, of the Thames. I found it a fascinating series of accounts presented in a sensible, straightforward fashion:

"The River Thames flows for 215 miles from the Cotswolds to the Thames Estuary, and it’s one of England’s flagship sights. The name Thames comes from the old English word Temisis, meaning dark one, and this river's history is every bit as dark as that of the land it runs through."
 

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'S a good episode. Scant on detail, mind, but that's only to be expected.
 

uair01

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I bet you have piles of books.
I follow the wonderful translations from ancient Chinese of the Stratagems of the Warring states by Jennifer Dodgson:
https://jenniferdodgson.wixsite.com/warringstates

Each one of them is a tasty treat but today this intrepid translator tweeted this gem and I was mightily amused:

20210525_195606.png

This was related to the following puzzle: what is ailing this person?

20210525_195822.png


Here is the original tweet:
 

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An intriguing tale.

Believing they were secretly working for Germany, members of a subversive “fifth column” were actually the targets of an extraordinary British intelligence operation.


IN APRIL 1943, Nancy Brown sat down with three friends in a London apartment to describe a German bombing raid she had witnessed a few weeks earlier in her hometown of Brighton, on England’s south coast.

“Someone said: ‘Oh, look at those planes,’” she explained, “and they looked out to sea and saw some big black planes flying in over the top of the water—couldn’t hear a sound—and just as they got to the end of the pier they seemed to turn their engines on and they flew straight up like that, branched out, and started machine–gunning and cannon–firing and dropped a lot of bombs!”

This was a “tip-and-run” raid, when Luftwaffe fighters would fly in from France below the British radar, strafe coastal towns, and then get out before the Royal Air Force could scramble to take them on.

Brown, a fresh-faced woman in her early twenties, had been in a café when the raid started. “I’d no sooner sat down in Ward’s to have my coffee when suddenly: ‘Crack! Crack! Crack!’ And everybody dived to the back of the shop because they felt quite sure the bullets were coming in at the windows and we were all huddled together,” she said. “And then Boomp!”—she banged the table—“Boomp! Boomp! And the windows blew in and out and the doors blew in and out. And when we came out we could see great columns of smoke coming up.”

Attacks like this were quite common at this stage of the war. What made Brown’s experience unique was that she thought the German bombing raid was the result of her work. Nancy Brown believed herself to be a Nazi informant. She had been recruited by the two women with her, and they reported to the man whose apartment they were in, Jack King.

We know what Nancy Brown said because she was one of the targets of an extraordinary British intelligence operation. “Jack King” was, in reality, Eric Roberts, a 35-year-old Englishman and married father of three who lived in the pleasant commuter suburb of Epsom, southwest of London. Until 1940, he had been a clerk at Westminster Bank and a source of some frustration to his employers, who found him altogether lacking in seriousness. ...

https://www.historynet.com/mi5s-diabolical-ruse-to-flush-out-nazi-supporters-in-britain.htm
 

ramonmercado

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Germany also had a colonial past.

Germany has handed back the human remains of indigenous people killed during a genocide in colonial Namibia more than 100 years ago.

A Namibian government delegation received the skulls at a church service in the capital, Berlin.

The bones had been sent to Germany for now-discredited research to prove the racial superiority of white Europeans.

Tens of thousands of Herero and Nama people were murdered in response to an anti-colonial uprising.

It is thought that 75% of the Herero population and half of the Nama population died.

The skulls of some of the victims were sent to Germany where racial anthropologists studied them as part of an attempt to justify a theory about the superiority of Europeans.

There are thought to be hundreds of Namibian skulls in Germany and on Wednesday more than 25 remains were handed back.

Skulls from Germany's other African colonies, including modern day Cameroon, Tanzania, Rwanda and Togo, were also used in the discredited studies.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-45342586

Follow up.

Germany has officially acknowledged that it committed genocide during its colonial-era occupation of Namibia, and announced a financial support gesture.

German colonisers killed tens of thousands of Herero and Nama people there in early 20th Century massacres.

Foreign Minister Heiko Maas on Friday acknowledged the killings as genocide.

"In light of Germany's historical and moral responsibility, we will ask Namibia and the descendants of the victims for forgiveness," he said. Mr Maas added that Germany would, in a "gesture to recognise the immense suffering inflicted on the victims", support the country's development through a programme worth more than €1.1bn (£940m; $1.34bn).

The agreement will reportedly see funding paid over 30 years through spending on infrastructure, healthcare and training programmes benefiting the impacted communities.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-57279008
 
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