History: January 18

January 18

1485 Henry VII of England weds Elizabeth, the eldest daughter of Edward IV, uniting the houses of Lancaster and York.

1644 Perplexed Pilgrims in Boston report America's 1st UFO sighting. (Bradley)

1671 Sir Henry Morgan, the privateer, captures Panama on behalf of England and is knighted despite his ruthless techniques.

1778 Captain James Cook discovers and names the Sandwich Islands in honor of the Earl of Sandwich, the first lord of the British Admiralty. The people who live there call them Hawaii, now the 50th of the United States. Actually, these islands had been discovered long before this day by the Polynesians. Other explorers before Cook probably stopped at the Hawaiian Islands as early as the 1500s. However, it is Cook who spreads the word of the existence of this group of tropical isles to the rest of the world. (Bradley)

1779 Birth: Peter Mark Roget, physician, scholar, lexicographer, inventor, log-log sliderule, the man behind the thesaurus.

1782 Birth: Daniel Webster, US statesman; “Liberty and Union, now and forever, one and inseparable.” "...his era's foremost advocate of American nationalism. A farmer's son, he graduated from Dartmouth College in 1801. After a legal apprenticeship, Webster opened a legal practice in Portsmouth, N.H., in 1807. Rising quickly as a lawyer and Federalist party leader, Webster was elected (1812) to the U.S. House of Representatives because of his opposition to the War of 1812, which had crippled New England's shipping trade. After two more terms in the House, Webster left Congress in 1816 and moved to Boston. Over the next six years, he won major constitutional cases before the Supreme Court...establishing himself as the nation's leading lawyer and an outstand outstanding orator. In 1823, Webster was returned to Congress from Boston, and in 1827 he was elected senator from Massachusetts. New circumstances enabled Webster to become a champion of American nationalism. With the Federalist party dead, he joined the National Republican party, allying himself with Westerner Henry CLAY and endorsing federal aid for roads in the West. In 1828, the dominant economic interests of Massachusetts having shifted from shipping to manufacturing, Webster backed the high-tariff bill of that year. Angry Southern leaders condemned the tariff, and South Carolina's John C. CALHOUN argued that his state had the right to nullify the law. Replying to South Carolina's Robert HAYNE in a Senate debate in 1830, Webster triumphantly defended the Union. His words "Liberty and Union, now and forever, one and inseparable!" won wide acclaim. Webster and President Andrew Jackson joined forces in 1833 to suppress South Carolina's attempt to nullify the tariff. But Webster and other opponents of Jackson--now known as Whigs (see WHIG PARTY, United States)--battled him on other issues, including his attack on the National Bank. Webster ran for the presidency in 1836 as one of three Whig party candidates but carried only Massachusetts. For the remainder of his career..."

1788 The first English settlers, with 736 convicts, arrive in Australia's Botany Bay to establish a penal colony.

1847 Donner Party: Seven survivors of the Forlorn Hope, William Eddy, William Foster, and the five women, reach safety at Johnson's Ranch. Of the eight dead, seven have been cannibalized. Jay Fosdick died of exhaustion and starvation, but the two Indians, Luis and Salvador, were killed for food. Messages are dispatched to neighboring American settlements. The shocking news eventually reaches San Francisco, and public meetings are held to raise funds and organize rescue parties.

1871 The Second Reich is proclaimed as Wilhelm I of Prussia becomes Kaiser (emperor) in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles, France.

1892 Birth: Oliver Norvell Hardy, Harlem, GA.

1907 Klara Hitler, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer, has a mastectomy at the Sisters of Mercy Hospital in Linz. The surgeon is Hofrat Dr. Karl Urban. He is assisted by the family doctor, Eduard Bloch, a Jew.

After it appears that his mother has made a complete recovery, Hitler moves to Vienna with the hope of dedicating his life to a career as a 'great artist' and painter.

1911 Volkishness: Johannes Hering, a member of the local Hammer group in Munich, the Pan-German League and a close friend of both Guido von List and Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels, writes to Philipp Stauff, the prominent vlkisch journalist, telling him that he has been a Freemason since 1894, but this "ancient Germanic institution" has been polluted by Jewish and parvenu ideas. He concluded that a revived "Aryan" lodge would be a great boon to anti-Semites. (Bundesarchiv, Koblenz; Roots)

1911 US pilot Eugene Ely becomes the first person to land a plane on the deck of a ship. He lands a Curtiss aircraft on a platform on the cruiser Pennsylvania in San Francisco Bay.

1912 British explorer Captain Robert Falcon Scott reaches the South Pole - only to find that Norwegian Amundsen had arrived 35 days earlier.

1914 The Munich police arrest free-lance artist Adolf Hitler. They have received a summons from the Austrian Government requiring Hitler to show himself in Linz in two days. Hitler is accused of leaving Austria to evade military service. If this is found to be true, he can be fined up to 2000 kronen, sentenced to a year in prison, and he will still have to fulfill his military obligations. After being taken to police headquarters, Hitler explains that he was not trying to evade military service. Draft dodgers at that time went to Switzerland, not to Germany, which had an extradition treaty with Austria. The local authorities are sympathetic to Hitler's story and with the help of his lawyer friend, Hepp, Hitler is granted an audience the next day with the Austrian Consulate General.

Weimar: The peace conference at Versailles (the Paris Peace Conference) officially opens, attended by 70 delegates, representing 27 victorious Allied powers. Neither Germany nor the new Russian Soviet republic are represented. The principal participants are the leaders of the four great powers: Woodrow Wilson of the United States, Georges Clemenceau of France, David Lloyd George of Britain, and Vittorio Orlando of Italy. Note: Germany is prepared to negotiate on the basis of Wilson's Fourteen Points, but since its representatives are not allowed to attend the conference, it matters little. The Germans are at the mercy of the armistice which will be renewed each month for the next six months. The blockade (including foodstuffs) remains in place during that time and conditions deteriorate severely in Germany, creating a residue of bitterness, which will begin to raise havoc long before the next item. (Schlesinger I)

1927 Weimar: Hitler gives an election address in Schleiz, Thuringia. "To me the situation of the German nation today seems like that of a sick person. I know that people on various sides often say, "Why do you constantly say that we are sick!" People have said to us: "Daily life goes on as it always did; this "sick person", as you can see, eats day after day, works day in and day out; how can you say that this person is sick?!" But the question is not whether a nation is still alive and the economy functioning. Just because a person eats and works does not mean that he is fit. The most reliable criterion is how that persons himself feels. He can tell whether he is fit or ill. It is precisely the same in the life of nations. Nations are often sick for long periods - often centuries - yet individual members of the nations cannot fully understand the nature of the sickness..."

1933 Weimar: Ribbentrop arranges a meeting between Papen and Hitler, with Roehm and Himmler in attendance. Hitler, encouraged by the Nazis strong showing in the Lippe election, ups his demands to include the Chancellorship. When Papen claims that Hindenburg wILL never allow it, Hitler tells him he can see no use for further talks. After the meeting, Ribbentrop suggests that a meeting be arranged between Hindenburgs son, Oskar, and Hitler.

1941 WW2: Ezra Pound, an admirer of Mussolini, begins recording talks for broadcast over Rome Radio. He makes more than 300 broadcasts for the Fascists.

1941 WW2: One of the greatest race horses of his time, Epinard, is stolen during the German occupation of France. One newspaper account discloses that the famous equine is being used as a delivery wagon horse.

1941 WW2: Hitler advises Antonescu to "liquidate" the Romanian Legionary Movement and German forces are soon ordered to help crush the Legionaries.

1942 WW2: The Russian counteroffensive in the Moscow sector reaches a point 70 miles from Smolensk.

1942 WW2: German-Japanese-Italian military agreement signed in Berlin.

1943 WW2: The German siege of Leningrad is broken by the Russians.

1943 WW2: US commercial bakers stop selling sliced bread. Only whole loaves are sold until the end of the war.

1943 Holocaust: Professor C. Schneider places his first requests for the killing of patients at his research ward in Wiesloch before the Reich Commission for the Registration of Severe Disorders in Childhood.

1943 Holocaust: The Jewish underground in Warsaw resists a new wave of deportations. In four days, 6,000 Jews are deported and 1,000 killed in the streets. So fierce is the Jewish resistance and street fighting that deportations are suspended until April 19.

1945 WW2: The Great Russian offensive against Berlin begins. In only 18 days, Soviet troops will advance more than 300 miles.

1945 Holocaust: The Germans issue orders for the immediate evacuation all slave labor camps in Upper Silesia. Hundreds die of exhaustion, freeze to death, or are murdered by their guards along the way.

1945 Holocaust: The evacuation of Auschwitz begins.

1950 The federal tax on oleomargarine is repealed.

1952 Curly Howard (aka Jerome Lester Horwitz) dies. Rarely has the world seen his like.

1955 European Kenyans react bitterly and furiously to an offer of amnesty made to Mau Mau terrorists by the Governor, Sir Evelyn Baring. He tells members of the pro-independence organization - most of them Kikuyu tribesmen - that they will not be hanged if they surrender at once, although they can be held in detention.

1955 Death: George Morrow, illustrator.

1968 The Nam: At a White House luncheon hostessed by Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson, with 50 white and black women present to discuss urban crime, entertainer Eartha Kitt sets nerves on edge when she speaks out against the Vietnam War. She links the rising crime rate with the escalation of the war. Mrs. Johnson is visibly upset by Kitt's allegations, and her entertainment career will begin to disintegrate after the luncheon. More than twenty years later, Kitt will blame the reaction to her statements at the luncheon on her inability to get work in the States, and will work for several decades in Europe. In a 1993 talk-show interview with Whoopi Goldberg, Kitt will convey that she believed that she was subtly blackballed as a result of the luncheon incident. (Bradley)

1972 Former Rhodesian prime minister Garfield Todd and his daughter are arrested for campaigning against the granting of legal independence to the country.

1991 Desert Storm: Iraq fires at least eight missiles at Israel in a bid to drag the Jewish state into the Gulf War the day after the allies had launched Operation Desert Storm.

1995 The European Parliament endorses the new 20-strong European Commission, in a vote marking the Strasbourg-based assembly's political coming of age.














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