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Today in History with a Twist

Let the Games Begin!                                              

     After a 12 year hiatus due to the distraction caused by World War II, the Olympic Games are back (1948).  Not only did England win the war but they also won the right to host the Games of the XIV Olympiad in London.  Obviously there will be many comparisons to the last Olympics which were held in Berlin.  Just don't see the Brits being as extravagant as the Germans.

   The Italian athletes will probably be breaking out mom’s famous recipe - it’s National Lasagna Day!  This delicious Italian dish is usually made with layers of flat pasta sheets, tomato sauce, and cheese, but there are dozens of different variations. Some popular additions are meat, vegetables, and Béchamel sauce.  People have been eating noodles for at least 4,000 years, but culinary historians disagree over when and where the first pasta dish originated.  We do know that tomatoes are a "New World" food, which means pasta and tomato dishes (like lasagna) have only been around since the 16th century.  To celebrate National Lasagna Day, bake a big pan of lasagna.  Grab a bottle of red wine and invite some friends over to enjoy a fun, family-style dinner!  (Punchbowl.com)

    Fed up with the internal bickering the co-Emperors, Pupienus and Balbinus, the Praetorian Guard stormed the palace and took them prisoner (238).  They then dragged them through the streets of Rome and executed them.  This was followed by Gordian III, age 13, being proclaimed emperor.  Think I would follow the Praetorian's advice if I were him.  He could also visit our new Teen Center to learn some new skills. 

   Surprising news from Washington D.C. (1864) where socialite Belle Boyd has been arrested by Union troops and charged with being a Confederate spy.  She is being detained at the Old Capitol Prison.  The Yankees just couldn't bring themselves to hang a woman.

      At a peace conference held at The Hague, Netherlands representatives from the United States, Great Britain, Austria-Hungary, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Russia, Japan, and China have signed a series of agreements that out line laws for the conduct of warfare and establishing international courts to settle disputes between countries (1899).  I'm sure war will be much more civilized now that we have a set of rules to follow.

     In nearby Germany a fledgling political party, the National Socialist German Workers Party has named a new leader (1921).  He is the charismatic Adolf Hitler who can really whip up the emotions of a crowd with one of his speeches.  Keep an eye on this up and comer. 

      In Washington D.C. today (1958) President Eisenhower signed into law the National Aeronautics and Space Act.  The act creates the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).  To the moon Alice, to the moon!

      From the world of science we have learned today (2005) that our solar system has a new member with Astronomers announcing their discovery of the dwarf planet Eris.  Maybe one day it will grow into a full blown planet.

Today we celebrate the birthdays of:

     1805 - Alexis de Tocqueville - French historian and scientist (d. 1859) - How come a 200 year old (figuratively) old Frenchman knows more about us than us?

     1883 - Benito Mussolini - Dictator of Italy (d. 1945) - Hard to believe he was actually a European powerhouse until he hooked his wagon to the wrong star.

The following are books in our collection that relate to today's topics:

 


Chronicle of the Olympics by DK Publishing
Amazon Says: Updated to include information on the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta, plus details about the upcoming Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, and Sydney's games in 2000, this book inc more...
Amazon Says: Updated to include information on the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta, plus details about the upcoming Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, and Sydney's games in 2000, this book includes a list of every Olympic medal winner since the first modern games . less...
Amazon

Pasta by Jeni Wright
Amazon Says: This book has everything you will need to know about choosing, making and cooking pasta, and includes over 350 classic and original recipes. more...
Amazon Says: This book has everything you will need to know about choosing, making and cooking pasta, and includes over 350 classic and original recipes. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Book by Michael Grant more...
Amazon Says: Book by Michael Grant less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Clandestine missions. Clever, devious, daring. Passionately committed to a cause. During America's most divisive war, both the Union and Confederacy took advantage of brave an more...
Amazon Says: Clandestine missions. Clever, devious, daring. Passionately committed to a cause. During America's most divisive war, both the Union and Confederacy took advantage of brave and courageous women willing to adventurously support their causes. These female spies of the Civil War participated in the world's second-oldest profession-spying-a profession perilous in the extreme. The tales of female spies are filled with suspense, bravery, treachery, and trickery. They took enormous risks and achieved remarkable results-often in ways men could not do. As stated on the grave marker of Union spy Elizabeth Van Lew: "She risked everything that is dear to man-friends, fortune, comfort, health, life itself." Told with personality and pizzazz, author H. Donald Winkler uses primary Civil War sources such as memoirs, journals, letters, and newspaper articles, plus the latest in scholarly research, to make these incredible stories come alive. less...
Amazon

Humanity in Warfare by Geoffrey Best
Amazon

Amazon Says: Book by Taylor, Simon more...
Amazon Says: Book by Taylor, Simon less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Developed with NASA and the National Air & S pace Museum to coincide with the 40th anniversary of NASA an d John Glenn''s return to space on the Space Shuttle Columbia , this more...
Amazon Says: Developed with NASA and the National Air & S pace Museum to coincide with the 40th anniversary of NASA an d John Glenn''s return to space on the Space Shuttle Columbia , this collection of images chronicles the history of the U. S. space programme. ' less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: NASA launches a yearlong celebration of its 50th anniversary in the fall of 2007, and Abrams is privileged to publish this visual history of its many achievements in manned an more...
Amazon Says: NASA launches a yearlong celebration of its 50th anniversary in the fall of 2007, and Abrams is privileged to publish this visual history of its many achievements in manned and unmanned space travel. Written and edited by a team of experienced NASA staffers, and illustrated with many unpublished and rare photographs from the voluminous NASA archives scattered across the country, America in Space offers an unparalleled vision of half a century of exploration and discovery. The story of America’s space age is told with more than 400 carefully selected images. The story begins in the 1950s with intrepid test pilots venturing ever faster and higher, and opens out into the now-legendary Mercury and Apollo missions of the 1960s that made astronauts into national heroes. The space shuttle era shows us what everyday space travel might look like, while grand vistas of the universe expand our sense of wonder. The large format of the book captures both the human drama and the vast scale of NASA’s projects. America in Space is a photographic record of the greatest adventure of our time. less...
Amazon
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