Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Today in History for July 11, 2018

One of the two Wilcox Mineral Springs hotels.

July 11, 1405 – Ming admiral Zheng He set sail to explore the world for the first time.

July 11, 1576 – Martin Frobisher sighted Greenland.

July 11, 1616 – Samuel de Champlain returned to Quebec.

July 11, 1656 - Ann Austin and Mary Fisher, two Englishwomen, became the first Quakers to immigrate to the American colonies when the ship carrying them landed at Boston in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The pair came from Barbados, where Quakers had established a center for missionary work.

July 11, 1767 – John Quincy Adams, the son of second U.S. President, John Adams, was born in Braintree, Mass. He would go on to become the sixth president of the United States in 1825.

July 11, 1780 - In South Carolina, Philadelphia lawyer Captain Christian Huck and 130 Loyalist cavalry arrived at William Bratton's plantation. The next morning at neighboring Williamson's plantation they were attacked and defeated by 500 Patriot militiamen led by William Bratton.

July 11, 1782 - The British evacuated Georgia as British Royal Governor Sir James Wright, several civil officials and military officers left the city of Savannah and headed toward Charleston, S.C.

July 11, 1789 - Lafayette proposed a declaration of rights to the French National Assembly that he had modeled on the American Declaration of Independence. He would visit Claiborne, Ala. in April 1825.

July 11, 1798 - The U.S. Marine Corps, which had been disbanded after the American Revolutionary War, was formally re-established when "An Act for Establishing a Marine Corps" was passed by the U.S. Congress.

July 11, 1804 – Vice President Aaron Burr mortally wounded his long-time political antagonist, Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton, during an “affair of honor” at 7 a.m. on the dueling grounds near Weehawken, N.J. Hamilton, a leading Federalist and the chief architect of America’s political economy, died the following day. Charged with murder in New York and New Jersey, Burr, still vice president, returned to Washington, D.C., where he finished his term immune from prosecution.

July 11, 1831 – The Federal government granted an 80-acre tract of land to Monroe County Probate Judge Henry W. Taylor for a town to be established at the Crossroads. Monroeville’s present-day town square rests in about the center of this original land grant.

July 11, 1834 – Artist and painter James Abbott McNeill Whistler was born in Lowell, Mass.

July 11, 1843 – Jack M. Williams was born and he would go on to become the first postmaster at Awin in Wilcox County, Ala. The local explanation for the name “Awin” is that Williams, after asking for suggestions for a name for the post office, wrote “A win” beside the one the majority of residents favored, and post office officials took his comment to be the chosen name. The post office was established here in 1881.

July 11, 1861 - Union troops under General George B. McClellan scored another major victory in the struggle for western Virginia at the Battle of Rich Mountain. The Yankee success secured the region and ensured the eventual creation of West Virginia.

July 11, 1862 - U.S. President Lincoln handed over the job of general-in-chief to General Henry W. “Old Brains” Halleck.

July 11, 1862 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Big Creek Bluffs and Sears' House in Missouri. Federal reconnaissance was also conducted from Harrison’s Landing toward Williamsburg, Virginia.

July 11, 1863 - Union General Quincy Gillmore attacked Battery Wagner on Morris Island near Charleston, S.C. The attack was easily repulsed. A much larger assault took place on July 18, but the Confederates did not evacuate until Sept. 7, 1863.

July 11, 1863 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Pekin, Indiana; at Hagerstown and Jones's Cross Roads in Maryland; and at Stockton, Missouri.

July 11, 1863 – During the Civil War, a four-day Federal reconnaissance began from Cowan to Anderson, Tenn., and a four-day Federal reconnaissance began in the vicinity of Ashby’s Gap, Virginia.

July 11, 1864 – During the American Civil War, at the Battle of Fort Stevens, Confederate forces under General Jubal Early attempted to invade Washington, D.C. They turned back the next day. President Lincoln observed the fighting near Fort Stevens. The 1st and 2nd Divisions, 6th US Army Corps, and an advanced detachment of the 19th US Army Corps arrived at Washington, D.C.

July 11, 1864 – During the Civil War, a Federal operation from Gunter’s landing to Warrenton, Alabama took place.

July 11, 1864 – During the Civil War, the U.S. Navy destroyed the Confederate salt works near Tampa, Florida.

July 11, 1864 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Magnolia and Frederick in Maryland.

July 11, 1864 – During the Civil War, the District of Columbia militia was called into service to assist in the defense of Washington, D.C.

July 11, 1864 – During the Civil War, two days of skirmishing began in the vicinity of Pontotoc, Mississippi.

July 11, 1869 - Tall Bull, a prominent leader of the Cheyenne Dog Soldier warrior society, was killed during the Battle of Summit Springs in Colorado.

July 11, 1882 – American miner, explorer and park ranger James Larkin White was born in Mason County, Texas. He is best remembered as the discoverer, early promoter and explorer of what is known today as Carlsbad Caverns in Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico.

July 11, 1886 – Members of the Masonic Fraternity were invited to attend the funeral of Bro. Nathan Bell on this Sunday at 10 a.m. from Masonic Hall at Monroeville, Ala. F.M. Jones was the Monroeville lodge’s Secretary.

July 11, 1897 – Future U.S. Representative from Alabama George M. Grant was born in Louisville, Ala.

July 11, 1897 – Salomon August Andrée left Spitsbergen to attempt to reach the North Pole by balloon. He later crashed and died.

July 11, 1899 – Elwyn Brooks White, better known as E.B. White, was born in Mount Vernon, N.Y. His best-known book is 1952’s “Charlotte’s Web.”

July 11, 1906 – The murder of Grace Brown by Chester Gillette took place in the United States and served as the inspiration for Theodore Dreiser's “An American Tragedy.”

July 11, 1907 – The Monroe Journal reported that Miss Callie Faulk was teaching at Axle.

July 11, 1907 – The Monroe Journal reported that the Commissioners Court was in session that week to pass on numerous raises in tax values reported by the Tax Commissioner.

July 11, 1907 – The Monroe Journal reported that the following officers of Blacksher Lodge No. 593 were elected for the ensuing Masonic year: D.C. Mims, worshipful master; J.F. Lambert, senior warden; Tillman Lomax, junior warden; A.T. Ellis, senior deacon; H.R. Seals, junior deacon; J.H. Brown, treasurer; G.W. Grimes, secretary; J.J. Dunn and Walter Donald, stewards; F.N. Grant, tyler.

July 11, 1907 – The Monroe Journal reported that the Wilcox Mineral Springs was now open for the season. “The health giving properties of these waters can be vouched for by many who have been benefitted by them. A hack line to and from the depot to meet the trains morning and evening. Every arrangement for the comfort and entertainment of guests will be carefully looked after. Special terms by the week, month or season, can be had on application to G.W. Stuart, Proprietor, Schuster, Alabama.”

July 11, 1909 – Owassa’s baseball team won both games of a doubleheader against Sugar Hill.

July 11, 1912 – The Monroe Journal reported that Capt. John McDuffie was in camp with Col. Bricken’s regiment of the Alabama National Guard at Anniston. The Journal also reported that Capt. Hybart of the local militia company had received orders to report with his company at the maneuvers camp at Anniston the following week. The company was to leave on the following Monday.

July 11, 1912 – The Monroe Journal reported that several new dwellings were to be erected in Monroeville very soon, the new homes of Dr. W.T. Bayles and Tax Assessor B.B. Finklea being among the number.

July 11, 1912 – The Monroe Journal reported that work on the extension of the Monroeville branch of the railroad continued to progress though interfered with somewhat by the heavy rains of the previous 10 days. The track laying crew was up with the grading work and was only prevented from coming on into town by the unforeseen delays referred to.

July 11, 1914 - In his Major League Baseball debut, George Herman "Babe" Ruth pitched seven strong innings to lead the Boston Red Sox over the Cleveland Indians, 4-3. Ruth gave up just five hits over the first six innings. In the seventh, the Indians managed two runs on three singles and a sacrifice and Ruth was relieved. His hitting prowess, however, was not on display that first night – he went 0-for-2 at the plate.

July 11, 1914 – The Franklin baseball team played a double header against the Gulf, Florida & Alabama Railroad baseball team. Franklin won both games, 3-1 and 6-1.

July 11, 1915 – The “new” Methodist Church was dedicated at Burnt Corn, Ala. Bishop J.H. McCoy delivered the dedicatory sermon and officiated in the ceremonies before an “immense congregation.” During the event, the congregation presented a “beautiful loving cup” as a gift to the church’s pastor, the Rev. D.F. Ellisor.

July 11, 1915 – The Hon. Millard Fillmore Brooks, Escambia County, Alabama’s probate judge, died on this Sunday at the age of 58 at his home in Brewton, “following a long and painful illness.” Born on Oct. 11, 1856, he was buried in the Union Cemetery in Brewton. (Some sources say he died on July 8, 1915)

July 11, 1916 - Mr. W.P. Deer of Claiborne visited Monroeville, Ala. on this Tuesday and reported “a big river with many adjacent farms under water.”

July 11, 1916 - Jas. K. Kyser of Burnt Corn was in Monroeville, Ala. on this Tuesday attending the meeting of the Board of Revenue. Kyser reported the storm damage to growing crops severe in his community.

July 11, 1916 - Prof. Lewis left Evergreen, Ala. on this Tuesday morning for his home in Blocton. After a short visit there, he planned to go to Chicago and other northern cities. He was expected to return to Evergreen in the fall.

July 11, 1917 – The Wilcox County School Improvement Association’s leaders planned to meet on this second Wednesday of the month at 5 p.m. at the High School building. The following officers were selected at their previous meeting: President, Mrs. W.J. Bonner; Secretary and Treasurer, Mrs. Warren Primm; and Vice President, Mrs. F.H. Moore.

July 11, 1918 - Even with a deadly influenza epidemic spreading among German troops, the German High Command decided to go ahead with plans for a renewed assault on the Allies on the Western Front in the summer of 1918, making their final plans on this day.

July 11, 1919 – Around 5 p.m. on this Friday, a hail storm and “cloud burst” passed over Leeman L. Lee’s farm, six miles northwest of Castleberry, Ala. and severely damaged his corn and cotton crop. Estimated damages totaled $4,000 to $5,000. The hail was so heavy that it “actually bursted melons open.”

July 11, 1930 - The thermometer at the Evergreen, Ala. weather observation station registered high mark of 107.5 degrees on both July 11 and July 12, 1930.

July 11, 1930 – Literary critic Harold Bloom was born in New York City.
July 11, 1934 - U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt became the first American chief executive to travel through the Panama Canal while in office.

July 11, 1944 - Count Claus von Stauffenberg, a German army officer, transported a bomb to Adolf Hitler’s headquarters in Berchtesgaden, in Bavaria, with the intention of assassinating the Fuhrer. Stauffenberg had been summoned to Berchtesgaden to report to Hitler on the current military situation. The plan was to use the bomb on July 15, but at the last minute, Hitler was called away to his headquarters at Rastenburg, in East Prussia.

July 11, 1947 – Forty-one men were formally inducted into the Monroeville, Ala. Kiwanis Club on its first ever Charter Night nearly two months after the club was formed.

July 11, 1947 – In Evergreen, Logue, Scout hurler, pitched a hitless softball game on this Friday night but lost to Stuart, 1-0. Gunter scored the lone run of the game as Noble spaced three hits to shutout the Scouts.

July 11, 1948 – This Sunday’s baseball game between Monroeville and Brewton in Brewton was rained out after three and one half innings with Monroeville leading the Brewton team, 5-4.

July 11, 1955 - The U.S. Air Force Academy was dedicated in Colorado at Lowry Air Base.

July 11, 1957 – The Monroe Journal reported that Dr. Francis Nicholas, 33, a Monroe County native, had opened offices in Monroeville, in the Simmons Building, for the practice of general medicine. Born in Frisco City, Nicholas was the son of Mrs. Ernest E. Nicholas and the late Mr. Nicholas of Monroeville. He graduated from the Medical College of Alabama in Birmingham in June 1956 and since that time has completed his internship at Lloyd Noland Hospital in Fairfield. Nicholas graduated from the University of Alabama in 1949 with a Bachelor of Science degree in biology. He completed a year of graduate work in general science there in 1951-52. Nicholas stated he planned to construct a clinic in the near future at a location on Claiborne Avenue, approximately 1-4 miles east of Monroeville Hospital.

July 11, 1960 – J.B. Lippincott & Co. published Harper Lee’s novel “To Kill a Mockingbird,” which would go on to win the Pulitzer Prize in 1961. The novel has sold more than 30 million copies since it was published and has been translated into 40 languages.

July 11, 1966 - A Harris survey taken shortly after the bombing raids on the Hanoi-Haiphong area showed that 62 percent of those interviewed favored the raids, 11 percent were opposed, and 27 percent were undecided.

July 11, 1967 – Pulitzer Prize-winning Indian-American author Jhumpa Lahiri was born Nilanjana Sudeshna Lahiri in London.

July 11, 1967 - In Senate debates about U.S. policy in Southeast Asia, Senator Mike Mansfield (D-Montana) warned against further escalation of the war.

July 11, 1969 - South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu, in a televised speech, made a “comprehensive offer” for a political settlement and challenged the National Liberation Front to participate in free elections organized by a joint electoral commission and supervised by an international body.

July 11, 1972 – On his afternoon, eight-year-old Terry Harrison of Louisiana, Mo. described seeing a “monster” that was “at least seven feet tall with a pumpkin-shaped head… covered with shaggy black hair” and was said to have startled the boy with a “low, throaty growl.” His sister, Doris, looked at a bathroom window and saw it standing “up the hill from the house.” Their parents found a stamped down circle, but no other evidence of the giant forest creater, which became known as “Momo,” short for the “Missouri Monster.” Later that night, about 50 people at the Harrison home heard “the thing roar.”

July 11, 1972 - From his wheelchair, George C. Wallace of Alabama, who’d been shot five times and paralyzed in May 1972, spoke at the Democratic National Convention in Miami Beach, Fla.

July 11, 1972 – Monroeville’s first policewoman, Mrs. Molly Adams, resigned her position as policewoman with the City of Monroeville effective on this Tuesday. She had been a member of the police force since March 3, 1969, serving as a meter maid and relief radio operator. Her salary was paid jointly by the city and the Little River Community Action Corporation.

July 11, 1975 – Former NFL and Auburn University offensive tackle Willie Anderson was born in Mobile, Ala. During his career, he played for Vigor High School, Auburn, the Cincinnati Bengals and the Baltimore Ravens.

July 11, 1976 – NBA power forward and small forward Eduardo Najera was born in Ciudad Meoqui, Chihuahua, Mexico. During his career, he played for the University of Oklahoma, the Dallas Mavericks, the Golden State Warriors, the Denver Nuggets, the New Jersey Nets and the Charlotte Bobcats.

July 11, 1979 – America's first space station, the abandoned Skylab, was destroyed as it re-entered the Earth's atmosphere, scattering debris over the Indian Ocean and sparsely populated Western Australia.

July 11, 1979 – Evergreen, Ala. weather reporter Earl Windham reported 1.90 inches of rain on this day.

July 11, 1980 – In a D.B. Cooper copycat incident, Glenn K. Tripp seized Northwest flight 608 at Seattle-Tacoma Airport, demanding $600,000, two parachutes and the assassination of his boss. After a 10-hour standoff, he was apprehended, but on January 21, 1983—while still on probation—he hijacked the same Northwest flight, this time en route, and demanded to be flown to Afghanistan. When the plane landed in Portland he was shot and killed by FBI agents.

July 11, 1985 – The Tristram Bethea House (also known as Pleasant Ridge) at Canton Bend in Wilcox County, Ala., was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

July 11, 1985 - Nolan Ryan of the Houston Astros became the first major league pitcher to earn 4,000 strikeouts in a career.

July 11, 1987 - Bo Jackson signed a contract to play football for the L.A. Raiders for five years. He was also continued to play baseball for the Kansas City Royals.

July 11, 1990 - Against the Orioles, Bo Jackson performed his famous "wall run," when he caught a ball approximately two to three strides away from the wall. As he caught the ball at full tilt, Jackson looked up and noticed the wall and began to run up the wall, one leg reaching higher as he ascended. He ran along the wall almost parallel to the ground, and came down with the catch, to avoid impact and the risk of injury from the fence.

July 11, 1995 - Mickey Mantle made his final public appearance. It was to increase awareness of organ donation programs.

July 11, 1999 - A U.S. Air Force jet flew over the Antarctic and dropped off emergency medical supplies for Dr. Jerri Nelson after she had discovered a lump in her breast. Nelso was at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Research Center.

July 11, 2000 - The video "Jaws," the Anniversary Collector's Edition, was released.

July 11, 2005 – The Ward-Witherington Cemetery and the Witherington Cemetery in Conecuh County, Ala. were added to the Alabama Historic Cemetery Register.

July 11, 2007 - Evergreen weather reporter Harry Ellis reported 1.03 inches of rain in Evergreen, Ala.

July 11, 2008 – “Hellboy II: The Golden Army” was released in theatres.

July 11, 2009 – Alabama Marine Police Officer Jeremy Alford spotted a 3- to 4-foot-long bull shark in the Alabama River about 80 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, shortly after he and follow officer Daniel Boutwell checked a boater south of the Claiborne Lock & Dam in Monroe County. The shark was swimming along the surface in the water, about seven feet deep, just south of the dam.

July 11, 2009 – Bear Grylls was officially made Chief Scout at Gilwell 24 in a handover event featuring Peter Duncan in front of a crowd of over 3,000 Explorer Scouts. Grylls was the tenth person to hold the position and the youngest Chief Scout since the role was created for Robert Baden-Powell in 1920.

July 11, 2009 - Alabama author Paul Hemphill died in Atlanta, Ga.

July 11, 2010 - After a two-year manhunt, 19-year-old Colton Harris-Moore of Washington state was arrested following a high-speed boat chase in the Bahamas. Harris-Moore was suspected of stealing an airplane in Indiana and crash-landing it in the Bahamas the week before. Nicknamed the “Barefoot Bandit” for going shoeless during some of his alleged crimes, the teen was a suspect in scores of other burglaries in the United States and Canada, where he was accused of swiping everything from potato chips to credit cards, small planes, boats and cars.

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