In 1943, Duke Ellington played Carnegie Hall in New York City for the first time.
I believe that God put sun and moon up in the sky.
I don’t mind the gray skies
’cause they’re just clouds passing by.
-Duke Ellington, “Come Sunday” from Black, Brown, and Beige
On this day in 1905, French fashion designer Christian Dior was born. He is the founder of the French fashion house Christian Dior as well. His first collection went down in fashion history as the “New Look” and was characterized by defined waists and skirts that fell below mid-calf.
Zest is the secret of all beauty. There is no beauty that is attractive without zest.
In 2009, Barack Obama was inaugurated, becoming the first black president of the United States.
In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of shortcuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted–for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things–some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.
-President Obama in his Inaugural Address
Thank you. God bless you. And may God bless the United States of America.
Today in 1977, snow fell for the first and only recorded time in Miami, Florida.
The snow fell in the early morning and was all melted by 9:30 am.
The once in a lifetime event is remembered fondly by those lucky enough to have experienced it.
Continuing the Bostonian theme from last post, I follow up with the Great Brink’s Robbery of 1950 which also occurred in the North End of Boston.
The Great Brink’s Robbery was dubbed the “crime of the century” because of its skillful execution and the sheer amount of money stolen ($1.2 million in cash, and $1.5 million in checks, money orders, and other securities).
The 2010 movie, The Town, was based on the Great Brinks Robbery.
The robbery was the work of an eleven-member gang. The robbers wore navy pea coats, chauffeur’s caps, rubber Halloween masks, gloves, and rubber-soled shoes. They broke in using copied keys, bound and gagged the employees present, and absconded with $2.7 million.
The gang members agreed not to spend their cut of the money until after six years, when the statute of limitations would expire. However, two members were arrested by June of 1950 and the remaining members were all arrested 5 days before the statute of limitations expired.
The infamous robbery has inspired countless movies including Six Bridges to Cross (1955) and The Town (2010).
Today in 1919, a large tank containing as much as 2,300,000 gallons of molasses collapsed in the North End of Boston. A large wave of molasses moved at 35 miles per hour and exerted a pressure of 200 kPa. The wave momentarily tipped a railroad car off its track and demolished buildings by ripping them off their foundations.
The disaster killed 21 people and injured 150 more. Rumors of sabotage on the part of the United States Industrial Alcohol Company spread like wildfire. Furthermore, the disaster endures as urban legend- it is said that on hot days, a sweet odor is emitted by the pavement.
Is it just imagination…
or is it the Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919?
Jack London, author of White Fang and Call of the Wild, was born today in 1876.
I would rather be ashes than dust!
I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot.
I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.
The function of man is to live, not to exist.
I shall not waste my days trying to prolong them.
I shall use my time.