January 2


0069 The Roman Lower Rhine army proclaims its commander, Vitellius, emperor. "...was Roman Emperor from April 17 69 to December 22 of the same year, one of the emperors in the "Year of the four emperors". He was the son of Lucius Vitellius, who had been consul and governor of Syria under Tiberius. Vitellius the son was consul in 48, and (perhaps in 60-61) proconsul of Africa, in which capacity he is said to have acquitted himself with credit. At the end of 68 Galba, to the general astonishment, selected him to command the army of Germania Inferior, and here Vitellius made himself popular with his subalterns and with the soldiers by outrageous prodigality and excessive good nature, which soon proved fatal to order and discipline. Far from being ambitious or scheming, he was lazy and self-indulgent, fond of eating and drinking..."

1492 Spanish forces under King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, recapture Granada from the Moors. "...The kingdom of Granada linked the commercial routes from Europe to Africa crossing the Sahara. The nation constantly shrunk, and by 1492, it was only a small nation on the southeastern coast. This was the most religiously homogenous area in the peninsula, in fact, Granada has been described as the first Muslim nation to be almost completely Muslim. Those Christians who did not convert to Islam had been deported or escaped to Christian countries in North and Africa. The only religious minority was a small Jewish community. On the 2nd of January 1492, the Moors surrendered to the Spanish, and the kingdom was incorporated into Castile. The fall of Granada holds an important place among the many significant events that mark the latter half of the 15th century. It ended, after an existence of eight hundred years, the Islamic rule in the Iberian Peninsula, and thus formed an offset to the progress of the Muslim power in Eastern Europe and the loss to the Christian world of Constantinople. It advanced Spain to the first rank among the nations..."
1570 Tsar Ivan the Terrible's march to Novgorod begins. "Ivan IV Vasilyevich, called The Terrible (1530-84), grand duke of Moscow (1533-47) and czar of Russia (1547-84), one of the creators of the Russian state. He was the first Russian ruler to be formally crowned as czar. The first 13 years of Ivan's reign constitute one of the greatest periods of internal reform, external expansion, and centralization of state power in the history of Russia. Ivan's reign after 1560 is remarkable more for the czar's repeated displays of erratic behavior and wanton brutality than for his statesmanship. He surrounded himself with a select group of noblemen, whom he allowed to exercise despotic power over his entire domain. In 1570 he ravaged the town of Novgorod and ordered the slaying of thousands of its inhabitants because they had been reported, on dubious authority, to be conspiring against him. Ten years later Ivan brought personal tragedy upon himself when, in a fit of anger, he struck and killed his eldest and favorite son."

1635 Cardinal Richelieu establishes the Academie Francaise to maintain the purity of the French language.

1647 Birth: Nathaniel Bacon, leader of Bacon's Rebellion, Virginia (1676).


1729 Birth: Johann Daniel Titius, "Prussian astronomer, physicist, and biologist whose formula (1766) expressing the distances between the planets and the Sun was confirmed by J.E. Bode in 1772, when it was called Bode's Law. Titius suggested that the mean distances of the planets from the sun very nearly fit a simple relationship of A=4+(3x2n) giving the series 4, 7, 10, 16, 28, *, 52, 100, corresponding to the relative distance of the six known planets, up to Saturn, and an unassigned value (*) between Mars and Jupiter. Olbers searched for a planetary object at this empty position, thus discovering the asteroid belt. However, since the discovery of Neptune, which did not fit the pattern, the "law" is regarded as a coincidence with no scientific significance."

1752 Birth: Philip Freneau, the 'Poet of the American Revolution': The Indian Burying Ground.


1757 Clive of India recaptures Calcutta after it had been seized by the Nawab of Bengal who used the "Black Hole" to imprison British captives.


1765 Birth: Charles Hatchett, "English chemist who discovered the element niobium, which he called columbium (1801). He found it while analyzing a piece of columbite from the collection of the British Museum in London, where he worked. The columbite was a black rock found in New England by Connecticut's first governor, JohnWinthrop (1606-1676) who enjoyed collecting minerals. His grandson had sent the specimen decades earlier to Sir Hans Sloane, who gave it to the museum. Columbite is a complex mineral, and Hatchett was able to detect, but not isolate the new element. Forty years later a German chemist, Heinrich Rose, rediscovered the metal and named it niobium, its current name."


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1769 English painter Sir Joshua Reynolds becomes the first president of the Royal Academy, which opens on this day.

1777 Birth: Christian D. Rauch, German sculptor.


1788 Georgia votes to ratify the US Constitution, becoming the fourth state in the modern United States. Named after King George II, Georgia was first settled by Europeans in 1733, when a group of British debtors led by English philanthropist James E. Oglethorpe travelled up the Savannah River and established Georgia's first permanent settlement, the town of Savannah. In 1742, as part of a larger conflict between Spain and Great Britain, Oglethorpe defeated the Spanish on St. Simons Island in Georgia, effectively ending Spanish claims to the territory of Georgia. Georgia, rich in export potential, was one of the most prosperous British colonies in America and was thus slower than the other colonies to resent the oppressive acts of the Parliament and King George III. However, by the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, Georgian Patriots had organized, and delegates were sent to the Second Continental Congress. During the war, Georgia was heavily divided between Loyalists and Patriots, and the British soon held most of the state. Savannah served as a key British base for their southern war operations, and the grim four-year British occupation won many Georgians over to the Patriot cause. On this day, Georgia becomes the first southern state to ratify the US Constitution. Nicknamed the Peach State. Georgia is also referred to as the Empire State of the South. Atlanta, its capital and largest city has been the center of commerce, communication, politics and transportation for the Southeastern region of the US; and every other street is named 'Peach' something or other. Like the rest of the 50 states, Georgia has a state bird: the brown thrasher; a state flower: for some reason it's not the peach blossom, but the Cherokee rose; a state tree: the live oak; a state song: Georgia on My Mind; and an official state motto: Wisdom, Justice and Moderation.

1790 Death: Joseph A Feuchtmayer (Feichtmayer), German rococo sculptor.

1800 The Free black community of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania petitions the US Congress to abolish slavery.


1803 Birth: Charles Thurber, "American inventor of the chirographer, an early form of typewriter, patented in 1843. Born in E. Brookfield, Mass., he formed Allen & Thurber (Worcester, Mass) with his brother in law, Ethan Allen to manufacture firearms. On Thurber's chirographer, the type was mounted on a rotating cylindrical drum. As Scientific American described it, "the paper was secured to the drum, and was brought into the proper place under the type bar guide. The type wheel was revolved until the desired lever came over the guide. The key was then forced down with the finger, and the character was printed." Thurber managed to produce some very neat correspondence with his chirographer, but the machine was far too slow to substitute for hand writing."

1811 US Senator Timothy Pickering becomes the first US Senator to be censured; he had revealed confidential documents communicated by the president of the United States.


1813 A special Commission opens at York, England to put on trial 66 persons for offenses connected with Luddism. Within days, seventeen of them had been executed on the scaffold. Taking their name from (perhaps mythical) Ned Ludd, Luddites vowed to destroy the factory mechanization they blamed for their unemployment. Riots began in 1812, and spread north from Nottingham where half of the population were receiving parish relief. Falling prices for goods, bad harvest increasing prices for food, wages at starvation level, costs of war and lost foreign markets contributed to the economic distress of the working class. One thousand looms were broken up in Nottingham, and a law was passed making destruction of machinery a capital offence."

1822 Birth: Rudolph J. E. Clausius, "Rudolf (Julius Emanuel) Clausius was a German mathematical physicist who was one of the founders of thermodynamics. In 1850, he stated the second law of thermodynamics. As a theoretical physicist, he also researched in molecular physics and electricty. In his published work in thermodynamics (1865) he gave the First and Second laws of thermodynamics in the following form: (1) The energy of the universe is constant. (2) The entropy of the universe tends to a maximum. In all Clausius wrote eight important papers on the topic. He restated Sadi Carnot's principle of the efficiency of heat engines. The Clausius-Clapeyron equation expresses the relation between the pressure and temperature at which two phases of a substance are in equilibrium."

1831 Liberator, an abolitionist newspaper, begins publishing in Boston.

1839 Pioneering photographer Frenchman Louis Daguerre takes the first ever photograph of the moon.

1857 Birth: Frederick Opper, cartoonist; Willie and His Papa, Maud the Mule, Alphonse & Gaston. See also: 1883, 1904, 1914.

1860 Birth: William C. Mills, "American museum curator who excavated Indian remains in Ohio, especially the Adena Mound (1901), a large earthen Indian burial ground near Chillicothe. Dating from about 50 BC, this site now represents the type site for the study of the North American Adena culture and period. Mills also made the definitive study (publ.1921) of Ohio's Flint Ridge "Great Indian Quarry" for the Ohio Archaeological and Historical Society of which he was curator and librarian 1898-1928."

1861 US Civil War: Colonel Charles Stone is put in charge of organizing the DC militia.
1861 US Civil War: South Carolina seizes inactive Fort Johnson in Charleston Harbor.
1861 US Civil War: The USS Brooklyn is readied at Norfolk to aid Fort Sumter.

1870 Construction begins on the Brooklyn Bridge.

1872 Brigham Young, the 71-year-old leader of the Mormon Church, is arrested on a charge of bigamy. With 25 wives, old Brigham probably got more sleep that night in jail than he was likely to get at home.

1872 Birth: Albert C. Barnes, "Dr. Albert C(oombs) Barnes was an American chemist who invented the antiseptic Argyrol (1902). This is a silver-protein compound used in aqueous solution as a topical antiseptic. Believing in the social theories of philosophers such as John Dewey, Barnes felt he could better the lives of his fellow citizens. He applied his own ideas in his own factories. He scheduled his workers on 8-hour shifts ­ 6 hours on the production line, followed by 2 hours of lectures on esthetics and art. He became a noted art collector, whose collection is now in the Barnes Foundation galleries in Merion, outside Philadelphia. Barnes' theories of art appreciation continue to be taught at the Barnes Foundation today. Dr. Barnes died in a car crash in 1951."


1873 Birth: Anton Pannekoek, "...Dutch astronomer and Marxist theorist. He is sometimes known as Antonie Pannekoek. Pannekoek studied mathematics and science in Leiden from 1891. Even before he went to college he was interested in astronomy and studied the variability of Polaris. He published his first article, On the Necessity of Further Researches on the Milky Way, as a student. Some years after he had finished his study he started work at the Leidse Sterrewacht (Leiden observatory), where he wrote his thesis. After reading Edward Bellamy's Equality, Pannekoek became a convinced socialist and started studying Karl Marx's theories. Soon Pannekoek became a well-known Marxist writer, writing for both Dutch and German magazines. Dissatisfaction with his job at the observatory led him to move to Berlin, where he became a lecturer at the school funded by the Social Democratic Party of Germany. His radical opinions soon got him in trouble..."


1880 Birth: Louis Breguet, French aviation pioneer.

1882 Because of anti-monopoly laws, Standard Oil is organized as a trust.


1888 Death: Little 15 month old Ida Hitler, of diphtheria, leaving Klara Hitler, recently a mother of three, childless with two step-children to care for.


1889 Birth: Roger Adams, "American chemist and teacher who joined the faculty at the University of Illinois at Urbana in 1916, which he converted into the leading centre of organic chemistry in the U.S. and forged  links with industry, notably with Du Pont. Adams worked out the chemical composition of various natural substances, including chaulmoogra oil (which is used in treating leprosy), gossypol (a toxic cottonseed pigment), marijuana, and many alkaloids. He also worked in stereochemistry and with platinum catalysts and the synthesis of medicinal compounds. His name is associated with chemical warfare agent Adamsite (diphenylamine chloroarsine) and the Adams catalyst (platinum oxide or palladium oxide, used for the hydrogenation of carbon- carbon double bonds)."

1893 The first US commemoratives and the first US stamp to picture a woman are issued.


1896 After the Battle at Doornkop, South Africa, Leander Starr Jameson surrenders to the Boers after his attempted raid on Johannesburg.

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1903 President Theodore Roosevelt closes a post office in Indianola, Mississippi, for refusing to accept a black postmistress.

1904 US Marines are sent to Santo Domingo to aid the government against rebel forces.


1905 Russian-Japanese War: The Russians surrender to the Japanese after the battle of Port Arthur.

1905 Elara, a satellite of Jupiter, is discovered by Perrine.

1912 Birth: Renato Guttuso, Italian painter.

1915 Birth: John Hope Franklin, historian.

1918 WW1: Russian Bolsheviks threaten to re-enter the war unless Germany returns occupied territory.


1920 Birth: Isaac Asimov, "American author and biochemist, who was a prolific writer of science fiction and of science books for the layperson. Born in Petrovichi, Russia, he emigrated with his family to New York City at age three. He entered Columbia University at the age of 15 and at 18 sold his first story to Amazing Stories. After earning a Ph.D., he taught biochemistry at Boston University School of Medicine after 1949. By 18 Mar 1941, Asimov had already written 31 stories, sold 17, and 14 had been published. As an author, lecturer, and broadcaster of astonishing range, he is most admired as a popularizer of science (The Collapsing Universe; 1977) and a science fiction writer (I, Robot;1950). He coined the term "robotics." He published about 500 volumes."

1921 Death: Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg, German chancellor/PM (Prussia); referred to the international treaty guaranteeing Belgian neutrality as "a scrap of paper".

1923 Holocaust: Alfred Rosenberg writes 'The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and Jewish World Policy'. It is reprinted three times within a year.


1923 A surprise attack by the Ku Klux Klan on a black residential area of Rosewood, Florida leaves 8 dead. Court ordered compensation will be awarded in 1995.

1923 Weimar: Inflation cripples the German economy. In 1918, the exchange rate, four marks to the dollar in 1918, is now more than 7,000 to the dollar.

1925 Weimar: Rudolf Hess and several other Nazis are released from Landsberg prison and quickly rejoin Hitler. (Missing Years)


1929 Holocaust: The Nazi Party obtains rights to Gottfried zur Beek's translation of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.


1929 The US and Canada agree on joint action to preserve Niagara Falls.

1929 Birth: Don Heck, comic artist.
1934 Holocaust: A German law is passed for sterilization of the "unfit."
1935 The Zurich city council requests the Swiss government to prohibit anti-Jewish demonstrations and publication of anti-Semitic literature.

1941 Birth: Donald B. Keck, "American research  physicist, who with his colleagues at Corning Glass, Dr. Robert Maurer and Dr. Peter Schultz, invented fused silica optical waveguide - optical fiber. This was a breakthrough creating a revolution in telecommunications, capable of carrying 65,000 times more information than conventional copper wire. In 1970, Maurer, Keck, and Schultz solved a problem that had previously stumped scientists around the world. They designed and produced the first optical fiber with optical losses low enough for wide use in telecommunications. The light loss was limited to 20 decibels per kilometer (at least one percent of the light entering a fiber remains after traveling one kilometer)."


1941 WW2: For the second and final time, German bombs fall on Ireland.

1942 WW2: Japanese forces take Manila and the naval base of Cavite in the Philippines.

1942 WW2: 28 nations, at war with Axis, pledge no separate peace.


1943 Holocaust:  More than 10,000 Jews from Holland, Belgium, Berlin, and The resienstadt are deported to Auschwitz. The last Dutch transport in January contains 869 invalids and children; all are gassed on arrival.

1943 WW2: Marshal Antonescu meets with Hitler and reconciles their differences concerning the Romanian failures and the disaster at Stalingrad.

1943 WW2: Germans begin a withdrawal from the Caucasus.

1944 Holocaust: Early in 1944, Gregor Schwartz-Bostunitsch and his private library of 40,000 anti-Jewish and conspiracy theory books, the heart of a proposed "institute for conspiracy study" are evacuated from Berlin to Schloss Gneisenau at Erdmannsdorf (Riesengebirge) in Silesia for safekeeping. Later in the year, Bostunitsch is promoted to SS-Standartenfuehrer (colonel) upon the personal recommendation of Heinrich Himmler. (Roots)

1945 WW2: The US Third Army in the Ardennes takes Bonnerue, Hubertmont and Remagne.


1945 WW2: Hitler turns down requests from Generals Model and Manteuffel to withdraw from west of Houffalize.


1945 WW2: Admiral Sir Bertram Ramsay, Naval Commander-in-Chief of Allied forces in Europe, is killed in an air accident on his way to meet with General Montgomery.


1945 WW2: In Budapest, the surrounded German garrison goes on the offensive, counterattacking the Soviets.

1945 WW2: Public Proclamation No. 21 goes into effect allowing Japanese-American "evacuees" from the West Coast to return to their homes.

1958 Birth: John Heebink, comic artist.

1959 The first lunar space shot, the unmanned (Mechta) Luna I, is launched by the Soviet Union. It will pass within 4,600 miles of the moon before moving on to a solar orbit.


1959 Rebel leader Fidel Castro, proclaims a new government for Cuba as it is clear that all effective opposition has collapsed. Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista flees the country.


1960 Senator John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts announces his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination.

1960 John Reynolds calculates the age of the solar system at 4,950,000,000 years.


1963 The Nam: The Viet Cong down five US helicopters in the Mekong Delta, 50 die.


1964 Ayub Khan is elected President of Pakistan.


1966 The Nam: American GIs move into the Mekong Delta for the first time.

1966 The first Jewish child is born in Spain since the 1492 expulsion.


1970 The US population is recorded at 205,052,174.

1970 "His (Rudolf Hess's) life sentence by the IMT (International Military Tribunal) at Nuremberg was, compared with others, by no means a lenient one. I suspect that all of us on the Western side took it for granted that it would be subject to the same sort of commutation recognized in civilized systems of criminal justice and would not literally be for life. That he should continue to be imprisoned now seems to me an affront to all notions of justice." Statement made this day by Lord Shawcross, British Chief Prosecutor at Nuremberg.


1971 A team of Israeli scholars announce the discovery in Jerusalem of a 2,000- year-old skeleton of a crucified male. Found in a cave-tomb, it is the first direct physical evidence of the well-documented Roman method of execution.


1972 Mariner 9 begins mapping Mars.


1974 US President Richard M. Nixon signs a bill requiring states to lower the maximum speed limit to 55 MPH. The law is meant to conserve gasoline supplies during an embargo imposed by Arab oil-producing countries. The embargo is lifted on March 13, 1974, but the speed limit lid stays on until 1987.

1975 The US Department of Interior designates the grizzly bear a threatened species.


1975 Kenneth C. Brugger discovers the long-unknown winter destination of the monarch butterfly in the mountains of Mexico. From 1937, for 38 years, Canadian zoologist Freud Urquhart patiently investigated to establish the route and destination of the insects. Using tags on the wings of some butterflies, he followed their migration trails to Mexican territory. Brugger, one of Urquhart's helpers, after a long period of traveling in the center of Mexico, found the first butterfly refuge. Within the territory of only 200 square meters, there are around 20 million butterflies. The area was cold and covered with oyamel trees and pine trees, a few kilometers from rural towns."


1980 President Jimmy Carter asks the US Senate to delay the arms treaty ratification in response to the Soviet invasion and occupation of Afghanistan.

1987 Troops of Chad President Habré conquer the Fada oasis.

1987 The publishers of Enid Blyton's Noddy books bow to pressure groups and agree to expunge 'racism' by changing Gollywogs to gnomes.

1988 Canadian Prime Minister Mulroney and President Reagan sign a Canada-US free trade agreement.

1994 More than 70 people are killed and at least 670 are injured after two days of factional battles in the Afghan capital Kabul.

1995 The most distant galaxy yet discovered is found by scientists using the Keck telescope in Hawaii. It is estimated to be 15 billion light years away and was named 8C 1435+63"




2002 Zacarias Moussaoui, the alleged '20th hijacker' of 11 September, refuses to enter a plea when charged with six counts of conspiring to attack the USA.