Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Today in History for Aug. 24, 2016

Grave of Asa Johnston
Aug. 24, 79 AD – Mount Vesuvius erupted, destroying the Roman city of Pompeii.

Aug. 24, 410 – Rome was sacked by the Visigoths.

Aug. 24, 1456 - The printing of the Gutenberg Bible was bound and completed in Mainz, Germany.

Aug. 24, 1591 – British poet Robert Herrick was baptized in London, England.

Aug. 24, 1680 - Colonel Thomas Blood died at his home in Bowling Alley, Westminster. He was the Irish adventurer who stole the Crown Jewels from the Tower of London in 1671.

Aug. 24, 1776 - American General Charles Lee informed Congress that Georgia should be kept out of enemy hands and recommended that the Continental Army assign additional reinforcements. Lee argued that the state’s salubrious climate, crops of rice, numerous harbors and rivers, livestock and proximity to the West Indies made it mandatory to keep out of enemy hands.

Aug. 24, 1781 – During the American Revolutionary War, a small force of Pennsylvania militia was ambushed and overwhelmed by an American Indian group, which forced George Rogers Clark to abandon his attempt to attack Detroit.

Aug. 24, 1787 – Belgian-English sailor, hunter and explorer James Weddell was born. In February 1823 he sailed to latitude of 74°15′S (a record 7.69 degrees or 532 statute miles south of the Antarctic Circle) and into a region of the Southern Ocean that later became known as the Weddell Sea.

Aug. 24, 1798 – Asa Johnston, who arrived in Conecuh County 1818 as one of its original pioneers, was born in Bibb County, Ga.

Aug. 24, 1813 – General Ferdinand Claiborne led about 80 men to reinforce Fort Easley at Wood’s Bluff on the Tombigbee River in present-day Clarke County, Ala., writing that if the Creeks attacked there he would “give a good account of them.”

Aug. 24, 1814 – During the War of 1812, British troops under General Robert Ross overwhelmed American militamen at the Battle of Bladensburg, Md. and marched unopposed into Washington, D.C. During the Burning of Washington, the White House, the Capitol and many other buildings are set ablaze.

Aug. 24, 1825 – Jessee C. Farrar was commissioned as Monroe County, Alabama’s Sheriff.

Aug. 24, 1828 - Confederate General George Hume "Maryland" Steuart was born in Baltimore, Maryland. Steuart was with the Army of Northern Virginia at the surrender at Appomattox Court House, Va. in 1865.

Aug. 24, 1861 – During the Civil War, Jefferson Davis appointed the following commissioners to represent the Confederacy in Europe: John Slidell in France, James M Mason in Great Britain, and Pierre A Rost in Spain.

Aug. 24, 1861 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought with Apache Indians near Ft Bliss, Texas by Confederate Lieutenant Colonel John R. Baylor. Baylor had the distinction of being dismissed from the Confederate army by none other than Jefferson Davis himself because of his harshness toward Native Americans. Later on, he was back in a gray uniform as a Colonel.

Aug. 24, 1862 – During the Civil War, the CSS Alabama was officially commissioned off the island of Terceira, Azores, to begin a two-year career of plundering U.S. merchant vessels.

Aug. 24, 1862 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Red Bird Creek and Madisonville, Kentucky; at Bolivar, Mississippi; and at Waterloo Bridge and Bristoe Station, Virginia.

Aug. 24, 1862 - Fearing further Sioux Indian attacks, New Ulm, Minnesota was evacuated by the citizen and the Federal Garrison.

Aug. 24, 1863 – During the Civil War, a skirmish occurred at Gunter’s Landing, near Port Deposit, Alabama.

Aug. 24, 1863 – Croatian explorer Dragutin Lerman was born in Požega, Slavonia. He was a member of the 1882 Henry Morton Stanley expedition to the Congo and was one of Stanley's most trusted men.

Aug. 24, 1863 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Brownsville, Arkansas; on the Atchafalaya River, at Morgan's Ferry, on the Comite River, and at Olive Branch, Louisiana; at Bullit's Bayou, Mississippi; near Hopewell, Waynesville, and Independence, Missouri; near Lamb's Ferry and at Hartwood Church, Virginia; and near Kearnysville and Shepherdstown and Skirmish at Halltown, West Virginia.

Aug. 24, 1863 – During the Civil War, because of the Williams C. Quantrill raid on Lawrence, Kansas, Union Brigadier General Thomas Ewing, located at Kansas City, Kansas, ordered all residents of Bates, Cass and Jackson Counties in Kansas to leave, allowing citizens loyal to the Union authorities to remain at military posts. Great resentment that lasted for years was generated by the estimated 20,000 displaced people.

Aug. 24, 1864 – The Battle of Ream's Station, Virginia took place on this day as Confederate troops secured a vital supply line into Petersburg, Virginia, when they halted destruction of the Weldon and Petersburg Railroad by Union troops.

Aug. 24, 1870 – The Wolseley Expedition reached Manitoba to end the Red River Rebellion.

Aug. 24, 1873 - An esoteric mystery of the Old West was solved when the first photograph was taken of the Mount of the Holy Cross in Colorado. Stories of the natural snow cross had circulated amongst settlers of the West for years and were the subject of much debate. Ultimately, photographer William Henry Jackson embarked on an expedition with the sole purpose of finding the Mount of the Holy Cross and succeeded in capturing the unique formation on film for the first time ever, thus proving its existence.

Aug. 24, 1887 – National Baseball Hall of Fame right fielder Harry Hooper was born in Bell Station, Calif. During his career, he played for the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago White Sox. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1971.

Aug. 24, 1899 – Poet, short-story writer and essayist Jorge Luis Borges was born in Buenos Aires.

Aug. 24, 1905 – The Monroe Journal reported that G.W. Broughton had resigned as Monroe County, Alabama’s surveyor and that the Rev. B.J. Skinner had been selected to fill the vacancy.

Aug. 24, 1905 - Prof. Douglas Allen of Jackson, Ala. lectured at Beatrice on the subject of “industrial education.”

Aug. 24, 1906 - Miss Ella Norred of Pineapple closed her school on this Friday evening at the Owens school house and returned home.

Aug. 24, 1909 – Workers started pouring concrete for the Panama Canal.

Aug. 24, 1911 – Monroeville, Ala. was awarded the County High School by unanimous vote of the state high school commission.

Aug. 24, 1915 - A “slide” occurred in the “deep cut” on the Gulf, Florida and Alabama railroad a few miles northwest of Monroeville, Ala. on this Tuesday. Several laborers were caught beneath the falling earth from the high embankment, and one man suffered a broken leg while others met with slight injuries.

Aug. 24, 1916 – The Conecuh Record reported, in news from the Owassa community, that Frank Perkins, who was a member of the Signal Corps in Montgomery, was home on a furlough the previous week.

Aug. 24, 1916 – The Conecuh Record reported that H.C. Rankin had been elected mayor of Brewton.

Aug. 24, 1916 – The Conecuh Record reported that the “work of straightening the road beyond Sandy Creek on the new road to Castleberry is being finished rapidly, and when finished will be a long needed improvement.”

Aug. 24, 1916 – The Monroe Journal published a notice saying that men contemplating enlistment in the Cavalry Troop being formed in Monroe County, Ala. at that time would find C.G. Yarbough at the Coxwell Drug Store in Monroeville, Ala., where he would provide information about the troop and lend assistance to those wanting to join.

Aug. 24, 1916 – The Monroe Journal reported, in news from the Perdue Hill community, that J.W. Wilkinson attended the Conecuh County Masonic conference at Repton, Ala. during the previous week.

Aug. 24, 1916 – The Monroe Journal reported, in news from the Perdue Hill community, that roads were “almost impassible, there having been no repairs made since the big washouts.”

Aug. 24, 1916 – The Monroe Journal reported, in news from the Pineapplce community, that Dr. Watkins accompanied Dick Wiggins to Selma during the previous week for an operation.

Aug. 24, 1932 - Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly across the U.S. non-stop. The trip from Los Angeles, Calif. to Newark, N.J., took about 19 hours.

Aug. 24, 1933 – H.P. Lovecraft completed “The Thing on the Doorstep,” which was originally published in the January 1937 edition of Weird Tales.

Aug. 24, 1938 - Virgil Trucks struck out his 418th batter, the highest season total in organized ball, for Andalusia in an Alabama-Florida League game.

Aug. 24, 1941 – Adolf Hitler ordered the cessation of Nazi Germany's systematic T4 euthanasia program of the mentally ill and the handicapped due to protests, although killings continued for the remainder of the war.

Aug. 24, 1951 – Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Oscar Hijuelos was born in New York City.

Aug. 24, 1960 – National Baseball Hall of Fame shortstop and third baseman Cal Ripken Jr. was born in Havre de Grace, Maryland. He played his entire career (1981-2001) for the Baltimore Orioles. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007.

Aug. 24, 1963 – During the Buddhist crisis, as a result of the Xá Lợi Pagoda raids, the US State Department cabled the United States Embassy, Saigon to encourage Army of the Republic of Vietnam generals to launch a coup against President Ngô Đình Diệm if he did not remove his brother Ngô Đình Nhu.

Aug. 24, 1964 – Gloria Jean Blanton of Excel, Ala. was named the winner of the Monroe County Maid of Cotton contest at the Monroeville Community House. Runner-up was Nancy Merriwether of Perdue Hill.

Aug. 24, 1969 - Company A of the Third Battalion, 196th Light Infantry Brigade refused the order of its commander, Lieutenant Eugene Schurtz Jr., to continue an attack that had been launched to reach a downed helicopter shot down in the Que Son valley, 30 miles south of Da Nang. The unit had been in fierce combat for five days against entrenched North Vietnamese forces and had taken heavy casualties. Schurtz called his battalion commander, Lieutenant Colonel Robert C. Bacon, and informed him that his men had refused to follow his order to move out because they had “simply had enough” and that they were “broken.” The unit eventually moved out when Bacon sent his executive officer and a sergeant to give Schurtz’s troops “a pep talk,” but when they reached the downed helicopter on August 25, they found all eight men aboard dead. Schurtz was relieved of his command and transferred to another assignment in the division. Neither he nor his men were disciplined. This case of “combat refusal,” as the Army described it, was reported widely in U.S. newspapers.

Aug. 24, 1970 - U.S. B-52s carried out heavy bombing raids along the DMZ. In the United States, a radical protest group calling themselves the New Year’s Gang blew up in the Army Mathematics Research Center at the University of Wisconsin Army Mathematics Research Center in Madison. A graduate student who was working late was killed in the blast. The center, which reportedly was involved in war research, had been a focus for protest in the past, but previously protests had all been nonviolent.

Aug. 24, 1972 – The Evergreen Courant reported that the large “Gulf” gas station sign had been erected at the intersection of I-65 and State Highway 83 in Evergreen, Ala. The sign’s poles were 110-feet tall and the sign was 15-feet tall for a total height of 125 feet.

Aug. 24, 1975 - Davey Lopes of the Los Angeles Dodgers set a Major League Baseball record when he stole his 38th consecutive base.

Aug. 24, 1976 – Two teenagers were startled by an unidentified creature walking along the side of Abair Road in rural Whitehall, N.Y. They later described the thing as standing seven to eight feet tall, walking upright like a man, and swinging its long arms at its side. The monster’s eyes gave off a reddish glow and it made a sound like a pig squealing.

Aug. 24, 1977 - Alabama author John Green was born in Indianapolis, Ind. He is best known for his 2012 book, “The Fault in Our Stars.”

Aug. 24, 1981 - Mark David Chapman was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for the murder of John Lennon.

Aug. 24, 1989 - Pete Rose, the manager of the Cincinnati Reds, was banned from baseball for life by Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti after being accused of gambling on baseball.

Aug. 24, 1989 – Flomaton beat Frisco City, 27-8, in Flomaton, Ala.

Aug. 24, 1990 - Iraqi troops surrounded foreign missions in Kuwait.

Aug. 24, 1992 – Hurricane Andrew made landfall just south of Miami as a Category 5 hurricane.

Aug. 24, 1995 - The Monroe County Chapter of the Alabama Dog Hunters Association was scheduled to have a meeting at 7 p.m. in Monroeville at the Scott Paper Co. offices at 530 Hornady Drive. Buddy Bradley, President of the Alabama Dog Hunters Association, was to be the guest speaker.

Aug. 24, 1998 – Country comedian Jerry Clower passed away at the age of 71 following heart bypass surgery in Jackson, Miss.

Aug. 24, 2003 – Ethiopian-English explorer and author Wilfred Thesiger passed away at the age of 93 in Croydon, London, England. Thesiger is best known for his travel books “Arabian Sands” (1959), on his foot and camel crossing of the Empty Quarter of Arabia, and “The Marsh Arabs” (1964), on his time living in the marshes of Iraq with the Marsh Arabs. He donated his collection of 23,000 travel photographs to the Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford.

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