As I’ve stated in my initial blog post, I’m a news junkie. Primarily gun news, but national news, world news, local news, etc. I love knowing what’s going on in the world today.
However, I’m also very interested in historical events. I spend a great deal of time on Wikipedia looking up information. For instance, when I watch a movie, particularly one I love from the 60’s or 70’s, I’ll look up the Wiki entry for it to see who is alive, who has died, production trivia, and the like. When I’m watching a ball game, I’ll look up similar information. Or, when major events take place, like [sarcasm] Whitney Houston’s death [/sarcasm], I’ll look up the Wiki entries that are likely to be relevant to the major event to see how it’s being reported by the masses.
Going back to my interest in historical events, I’m going to begin a series whereby I dig up information that is relevant to this site – and likely of interest to people who read this site, and do a brief summary of events that occurred on the particular day. I hope you enjoy reading about what happened in history on each given day as much as I enjoy looking it up and thinking about it.
I invite any of you reading my blog to respond to my blog entries with any historical information you are aware of to add to the topic. Please provide a link to the information if you have a link, and we’ll incorporate it into future posts.
Oh, I won’t be providing an in-depth analysis of any of the historical events. Just a brief summary with some hotlinks that will allow you to read more if you desire.
Also, I’m quite aware of the fact that Wikipedia is full of errors. I still enjoy it as a resource because it is quick and easy. If you have information that proves that any of the historical entries I bring over from Wiki or anywhere else is erroneous, please let me know. I won’t be using Wiki exclusively but it will be a primary resource…mainly because it’s quick and easy as a reference.
So, to begin, today is February 18. What happened today in history that might be interesting to all of us?
- In 1861, Jefferson Davis is inaugurated in Montgomery, AL, as the provisional President of the Confederate States of America.
- In 1865, Union forces under Major General William T. Sherman set the South Carolina State House on fire during the burning of Columbia.
- In 1878, John Tunstall is murdered by outlaw Jesse Evans, sparking the Lincoln County War in Lincoln County, New Mexico. Of course, the events are memorialized in the movie Young Guns.
- In 1955, Operation Teapot took place. Teapot test shot “Wasp” is successfully detonated at the Nevada Test Site with a yield of 1.2 kilotons. Wasp is the first of fourteen shots of the Teapot series.
- In 1983, thirteen people die and one is seriously injured in the Wah Mee Massacre in Seattle, Washington. It is said to be the largest robbery-motivated mass-murder in U.S. history.
- In 2001, seven-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Dale Earnhardt dies in an accident during the Daytona 500
And, a few odd historical items that also occurred on February 18:
- In 1930, while studying photographs taken in January, Clyde Tombaugh discovers Pluto.
- Also in 1930 – Elm Farm Ollie becomes the first cow to fly in a fixed-wing aircraft and also the first cow to be milked in an aircraft.
- In 1943, the Nazis arrest the members of the White Rose movement.
- On that same day in 1943, Joseph Goebbels delivers his Sportpalast speech.
- In 1972, The California Supreme Court in the case of People v. Anderson, 6 Cal.3d 628 invalidates the state’s death penalty and commutes the sentences of all death row inmates to life imprisonment.
- In 1977, the Space Shuttle Enterprise test vehicle is carried on its maiden “flight” on top of a Boeing 747.
- And finally, in 2001, FBI agent Robert Hanssen is arrested for spying for the Soviet Union. He is ultimately convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment.