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"...what have we got—a Republic or a Monarchy?” “A Republic, if you can keep it

Friday! History, St. Patrick's Day!, Music, Cinema, More!

On This Date In 1521 Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan reached the island of Homonhon in the Philippines, with 150 crew left of the original (268). Members of his expedition became the first Spaniards to reach the Philippine archipelago, but they were not the first Europeans.
On This Date In 1621 Samoset, the first Native American to make contact with the Pilgrims, surprised the settlers when he strolled straight through the middle of the encampment at Plymouth Colony and greeted them in English. A member of an Abenaki tribe that resided at that time in Maine, he was a sagamore (subordinate chief) of his tribe and was visiting Chief Massasoit. He had learned his broken English from the English fishermen that came to fish off Monhegan Island.
On This Date In 1751 James Madison (March 16, 1751 – June 28, 1836), “Father of the Constitution” and fourth president of the United States, was born. A graduate of the College of New Jersey at Princeton, where he studied the liberal arts, Madison wed his love of learning to a deep sense of civic responsibility to charter and to lead the young United States of America.
On This Date In 1781 During the American Revolutionary War, The Battle of Cape Henry was a naval battle which took place near the mouth of Chesapeake Bay between a British squadron led by Vice Admiral Mariot Arbuthnot and a French fleet under Admiral Charles René Dominique Sochet, Chevalier Destouches. Destouches, based in Newport, Rhode Island, had sailed for the Chesapeake as part of a joint operation with the Continental Army, and at the request of General George Washington, to oppose the British army of Brigadier General Benedict Arnold that was active in Virginia. Both fleets suffered some damage and casualties without losing any ships. However, Arbuthnot was positioned to enter the Chesapeake as the fleets disengaged, frustrating Destouches' objective. Destouches returned to Newport, while Arbuthnot protected the bay for the arrival of additional land troops to reinforce General Arnold.
On This Date In 1782 During the American Revolutionary War, The Battle of Roatán was a battle fought between British and Spanish forces for control of Roatán, an island off the Caribbean coast of present-day Honduras. A Spanish expeditionary force under Matías de Gálvez, the Captain General of Spanish Guatemala gained control of the British-held island after bombarding its main defenses. The British garrison surrendered the next day. The Spanish evacuated the captured soldiers, 135 civilians and 300 slaves, and destroyed their settlement, which had been used as a base for piracy and privateering.
On This Date In 1802 The U.S. Congress approved legislation establishing the United States Military Academy at West Point, one of the oldest military service academies in the world. Strategically located on the west bank of the Hudson River approximately fifty miles north of New York City, West Point was first garrisoned in January 1778 and is the oldest continuously occupied military post in America. George Washington transferred his headquarters there in 1779 as a Revolutionary War outpost.
On This Date In 1827 “Freedom's Journal,” the first black-owned and operated newspaper in the United States, was founded. The four-page, four-column standard-sized weekly was established the same year that slavery was abolished in New York State. Begun by a group of free black men in New York City, the paper served to counter racist commentary published in the mainstream press. Samuel E. Cornish and John B. Russwurm served, respectively, as its senior and junior editors.
On This Date In 1865 During the American Civil War, the mighty army of Union General William T. Sherman encountered its most significant resistance as it tore through the Carolinas on its way to join General Ulysses Grant's army at Petersburg, Virginia. Confederate General William Hardee tried to block one wing of Sherman's force, commanded by Henry Slocum, but the motley Rebel force was swept aside at the Battle of Averasboro, North Carolina.
On This Date In 1903 Phantly “Judge” Roy Bean, Jr. (c. 1825 – March 16, 1903), eccentric U.S. saloon-keeper and Justice of the Peace in Val Verde County, Texas, who called himself “The Law West of the Pecos”, died peacefully in his bed, after a bout of heavy drinking in San Antonio over the building of a new power plant.
On This Date In 1916 During World War I, Admiral Alfred von Tirpitz, the man largely responsible for the buildup of the German navy in the years before World War I and the aggressive naval strategy pursued by Germany during the first two years of the war, and in the midst of the international indignation surrounding the policy he had fathered, tendered his resignation to Kaiser Wilhelm II, who - somewhat to Tirpitz's surprise - accepted it.
On This Date In 1926 The first man to give hope to dreams of space travel was American Robert H. Goddard, who successfully launched the world's first liquid-fueled rocket at Auburn, Massachusetts, on March 16, 1926. The rocket traveled for 2.5 seconds at a speed of about 60 mph, reached an altitude of 41 feet and landed 184 feet away. The rocket was 10 feet tall, constructed out of thin pipes, and was fueled by liquid oxygen and gasoline.
On This Date In 1934 The sixth Academy Awards ceremony, for 1932/1933, was held in the Fiesta Room of the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, California. Hosted by Comedian Will Rogers, he also presented all of the awards. Best Picture - Cavalcade; Best Actor - Charles Laughton (The Private Life of Henry VIII); Best Actress - Katharine Hepburn (Morning Glory)...
On This Date In 1939 “Love Affair,” an American romantic film starring Irene Dunne and Charles Boyer and featuring Maria Ouspenskaya, was released. It was directed by Leo McCarey and written by Delmer Daves and Donald Ogden Stewart, based on a story by McCarey and Mildred Cram.
On This Date In 1945 During World War II, after months of fiercely fighting its Japanese defenders, and with a U.S. Navy military government established, the west Pacific volcanic island of Iwo Jima was declared secured and the fighting over. When all was done, more than 6,000 Marines died fighting for the island, along with almost all the 21,000 Japanese soldiers trying to defend it.
On This Date In 1951 “The Red Badge of Courage,” a war film made by MGM and directed by John Huston, was released. It was produced by Gottfried Reinhardt with Dore Schary as executive producer. The screenplay is by John Huston, adapted by Albert Band from Stephen Crane's novel of the same name. The cinematography is by Harold Rosson, and the music score by Bronislau Kaper. The making of the film is the subject of Lillian Ross's 1952 book Picture, originally in The New Yorker magazine.
On This Date In 1968 The My Lai Massacre was the Vietnam War mass murder of between 347 and 504 unarmed civilians in South Vietnam on March 16, 1968, by United States Army soldiers of “Charlie” Company of 1st Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 11th Brigade of the Americal Division. Most of the victims were women, children (including babies), and elderly people. Some of the bodies were later found to be mutilated. While 26 US soldiers were initially charged with criminal offenses for their actions at Mỹ Lai, only Second Lieutenant William Calley, a platoon leader in Charlie Company, was convicted. Found guilty of killing 22 villagers, he was originally given a life sentence, but only served three and a half years under house arrest.
On This Date In 1970 Over a span of just 12 months beginning in April 1967, the duo of Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell enjoyed a string of four straight hits with some of the greatest love songs ever recorded at Motown Records. Sadly, only the first two of those four hits were released while Tammi Terrell was still well enough to perform them. In October 1967, just six months after the release of the now-classic “Ain't No Mountain High Enough,” Terrell collapsed onstage during a live performance at Virginia's Hampton-Sydney College. Two-and-a-half years later, on March 16, 1970, Tammi Terrell died of complications from the malignant brain tumor that caused her 1967 collapse.
On This Date In 1977 “Last Concert in Japan,” an album by English rock band Deep Purple, was released. It records the last Japanese concert of the Mark IV member lineup with guitarist Tommy Bolin. This album was recorded on December 15, 1975 at the Tokyo Budokan and achieved a gold certification in Japan.
On This Date In 1978 One of the world's worst supertanker disasters took place when the Amoco Cadiz wrecked off the coast of Portsall, France. Although the 68 million gallons of oil that spilled from the Cadiz has since been exceeded by other spills, this remains the largest shipwreck in history.
On This Date In 1985 In Beirut, Lebanon, Islamic militants kidnapped American journalist Terry Anderson and took him to the southern suburbs of the war-torn city, where other Western hostages were being held in scattered dungeons under ruined buildings. Before his abduction, Anderson covered the Lebanese Civil War for The Associated Press (AP) and also served as the AP's Beirut bureau chief.
On This Date In 1988 As part of his continuing effort to put pressure on the leftist Sandinista government in Nicaragua, President Ronald Reagan ordered over 3,000 U.S. troops, under Operation Golden Pheasant, on emergency deployment into Honduras, as a result of threatening actions by the forces of the Nicaraguans.
On This Date In 1999 “EverQuest,” a 3D fantasy-themed massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), often called EQ, was released. The original design is credited to Brad McQuaid, Steve Clover, and Bill Trost. It was developed by Sony's 989 Studios and its early-1999 spin-off Verant Interactive, and was published by Sony Online Entertainment (SOE). Since its acquisition of Verant in late 1999, SOE develops, runs and distributes EverQuest.
On This Date In 2003 Race car driver Ricky Craven won the Darlington 500, crossing the finish line .002 seconds ahead of Kurt Busch for the closest recorded finish in National Association for Stock Car Racing (NASCAR) history. In May 2009, more than 5,000 racing fans voted Craven's victory the most memorable moment in the history of South Carolina's challenging Darlington Raceway, nicknamed “The Track Too Tough to Tame.”
On This Date In 2005 After a three-month-long criminal trial in Los Angeles Superior Court, a jury acquitted Robert Blake, star of the 1970s television detective show Baretta, of the murder of his 44-year-old wife, Bonny Lee Bakley.
On This Date In 2011 Speaking on TV in a rare address to the nation, Japanese Emperor Akihito expressed his condolences to victims of his country's massive earthquake and tsunami and told the Japanese people not to give up.


Hat tip to any included contributing sources, along with:



Happy Birthday Jerry Lewis (1926), Sanford I. Weill (1933), Chuck Woolery (1941), Erik Estrada (1949), Victor Garber (1949), Kate Nelligan (1951), Isabelle Huppert (1953), Nancy Wilson (1954), Clifton Powell (1956), Kelly Lynch (1959), Flavor Flav (1959), Tracy Bonham (1967), Alan Tudyk (1971), Monica Cruz (1977), Brooke Burns (1978), Stephanie Gatschet (1983), and Wolfgang Van Halen (1991).


RIP Caroline Herschel (1750 – 1848), James Madison (1751 – 1836), Sydney Chaplin (1885 – 1965), Henny Youngman (1906 – 1998), Pat Nixon (1912 – 1993), Mercedes McCambridge (1916 – 2004), Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1927 – 2003), Olga San Juan (1927 – 2009), and Tommy Flanagan (1930 – 2001).





Every action of our lives touches on some chord that will vibrate in eternity. Sean O'Casey


All the world's a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed. Sean O'Casey


This day is a happy one for America. In some places Americans get a little too happy. President George Bush, greeting Bertie Ahern at the White House on St. Patrick's Day 2004


This is one race of people for whom psychoanalysis is of no use whatsoever. Sigmund Freud (speaking about the Irish)


Today I come back to you as a descendant of people who were buried here in pauper's graves. President Ronald Reagan, on a visit to Ballyporeen in 1984


Those who drink to forget, please pay in advance. Sign at the Hibernian Bar, Cork City.


Ireland, thou friend of my country in my country's most friendless days, much injured, much enduring land, accept this poor tribute from one who esteems thy worth, and mourns thy desolation. George Washington, speaking of Ireland's support for America during the revolution.


When anyone asks me about the Irish character, I say look at the trees. Maimed, stark and misshapen, but ferociously tenacious. Edna O'Brien



Courtesy YouTube et al


Awesome Irish Dancing including members of Riverdance and school children in spectacular Central Station Sydney. Over 100 dancers spread St Patricks Day cheer in Sydney. Organised and coordinated by Tourism Ireland & Jason Oremus, Chris Naish and the Sneaky Steppers crew


Great Irish Dance! Must watch this! Enjoy!


Of all the things that can take you by surprise this St. Patrick's Day...
Here's one you'll actually enjoy...
Guinness® Black Lager is only available in the U.S.


Support from The Arthur Guinness Fund™ is helping Relief International to tackle the threats of waterborne disease in Africa through the distribution of 3,500 free water filters to communities across Ghana, as part of the Water Filter Enterprise programme.


Every year on Arthur's Day, at exactly 17.59, we toast the man who started it all. In the build up to Arthur's Day 2011, we asked what you're normally up to at 17.59, and got some great responses. So good, in fact, that we brought them to life in this animated film.
Don't forget to raise your glass at 17.59 on Arthur's Day!



What was it that made Maggie leave Ireland, forsake her siblings and parents and flee to New York in the 1800s, we never knew. We yearned to know, because she was the first in a long line of leavers, the matriarch of a clan of men and women who made mysterious and dramatic exits. But her reason for leaving must have been too awful, too painful, because Maggie was said to be a born storyteller, and that story was the one she would never tell. J.R. Moehringer, “The Tender Bar”


May your hearth be warm, your holidays grand, and your heart held gently in the Good Lord's Hand.
May the Lord keep you in His hand and never close His fist too tight.
Happy St. Patrick's Day!



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