Red, White and Dads

Flag Day and Father’s Day. Two great reasons to celebrate with family, food and fun!

 

Flag Day and Dads just sort of go together.  Words like Honor, Respect, Leadership, Ideals, Faith and Love come to mind – something we all look up to and cherish.  Today marks the recognition of Flag Day – commemorating the adoption of the flag of the United States on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress, and on Sunday we celebrate our amazing Dad’s on Father’s Day.   At KHT, Father’s Day Is extra special, as we honor our founder and his love of solving customer’s PIA (pain in the @%$) Jobs!  Below is some cool trivia I found about Flag Day and Father’s Day (thanks Wikipedia and history.com) Enjoy, and be sure to connect with Dad this weekend, or remember him in your prayers – and for each, give thanks, for we are truly blessed to have both in our lives.

 

Flag Day

  1. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day. Flag Day is not an official federal holiday. Title 36 of the United States Code, Subtitle I, Part A, CHAPTER 1, § 110[4] is the official statute on Flag Day, making it at the president’s discretion to officially proclaim the observance.
  2. On June 14, 1937, Pennsylvania became the first U.S. state to celebrate Flag Day as a state holiday, beginning in the town of Rennerdale.
  3. Perhaps the oldest continuing Flag Day parade is in Fairfield, Washington.  Beginning in 1909 or 1910, Fairfield has held a parade every year since. Appleton, Wisconsin, claims to be the oldest National Flag Day parade in the nation, held annually since 1950.
  4. The largest Flag Day parade is held annually in Troy, New York, which bases its parade on the Quincy parade and typically draws 50,000 spectators.  In addition, the Three Oaks, Michigan, Flag Day Parade is held annually on the weekend of Flag Day and is a three-day event (they too claim to have the largest flag day parade in the nation as well as the oldest).
  5. In Washington, D.C., Flag Day is celebrated heavily through the 7th and 8th Wards of the city. It is said that Clyde Thompson is the “Godfather of Flag Day”. It is tradition in these wards to slow smoke various meats and vegetables. Click HERE for great smoker recipies.

Several people and/or organizations played instrumental roles in the establishment of a national Flag Day celebration. They are identified here in chronological order.

  1. 1861, Victor Morris of Hartford, Conn., is popularly given the credit of suggesting “Flag Day,” the occasion being in honor of the adoption of the American flag on June 14, 1777. The city of Hartford observed the day in 1861, carrying out a program of a patriotic order, praying for the success of the Federal arms and the preservation of the Union.  The observance apparently did not become a tradition.
  2. 1885, Bernard J. Cigrand – working as a grade school teacher in Waubeka, Wisconsin, in 1895, Cigrand held the first recognized formal observance of Flag Day at the Stony Hill School. From the late 1880s on, Cigrand spoke around the country promoting patriotism, respect for the flag, and the need for the annual observance of a flag day on June 14, the day in 1777 that the Continental Congress adopted the Stars and Stripes.  In June 1888, Cigrand advocated establishing the holiday in a speech before the “Sons of America,” a Chicago group and founded a magazine, American Standard, in order to promote reverence for American emblems. Cigrand became president of the American Flag Day Association and later of the National Flag Day Society, which allowed him to promote his cause with organizational backing, and once noted he had given 2,188 speeches on patriotism and the flag.
  3. 1888, William T. Kerr – a native of Pittsburgh and later a resident of Yeadon, Pennsylvania, founded the American Flag Day Association of Western Pennsylvania in 1888, and became the national chairman of the American Flag Day Association one year later, serving as such for fifty years. He attended President Harry S. Truman’s 1949 signing of the Act of Congress that formally established the observance.
  4. 1893, Elizabeth Duane Gillespie – In 1893, Gillespie, a descendant of Benjamin Franklin and the president of the Colonial Dames of Pennsylvania, attempted to have a resolution passed requiring the American flag to be displayed on all Philadelphia’s public buildings.  In 1937, Pennsylvania became the first state to make Flag Day a legal holiday.
  5. 1907, BPOE – the American fraternal order and social club the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks has celebrated the holiday since the early days of the organization and allegiance to the flag is a requirement of every member.  In 1907, the BPOE Grand Lodge designated by resolution June 14 as Flag Day.  The Elks prompted President Woodrow Wilson to recognize the Order’s observance of Flag Day for its patriotic expression.
  6. 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt – launched an international “United Flag Day” or “United Nations Day”, celebrating solidarity among the World War II Allies, six months after the Declaration by United Nations.  It was observed in New York City as the “New York at War” parade, and throughout the United States and internationally from 1942-1944.
  7. The Betsy Ross House, Philadelphia – The week of June 14 (June 10–16, 2018; June 09–15, 2019; June 14–20, 2020) is designated as “National Flag Week.” During National Flag Week, the president will issue a proclamation urging U.S. citizens to fly the American flag for the duration of that week. The flag should also be displayed on all government buildings. Some organizations, such as the town of Dedham, Massachusetts, hold parades and events in celebration of America’s national flag and everything it represents.
  8. The National Flag Day Foundation holds an annual observance for Flag Day on the second Sunday in June (June 10, 2018; June 09, 2019; June 14, 2020). The program includes a ceremonial raising of the national flag, the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, the singing of the national anthem, a parade and other events.
  9. The Star-Spangled Banner Flag House in Baltimore, Maryland birthplace of the flag that a year later inspired Francis Scott Key (1779–1843), to pen his famous poem, has celebrated Flag Day since the inception of a museum in the home of flag-banner-pennant maker Mary Pickersgill on the historic property in 1927.
  10. On June 14, 2017, President Donald Trump, who was coincidentally born on Flag Day 1946, proclaimed Flag Day and Flag Week.

Father’s Day

  1. The “Mother’s Day” we celebrate today has its origins in the peace-and-reconciliation campaigns of the post-Civil War era. During the 1860s, at the urging of activist Ann Reeves Jarvis, one divided West Virginia town celebrated “Mother’s Work Days” that brought together the mothers of Confederate and Union soldiers.
  2. However, Mother’s Day did not become a commercial holiday until 1908, when–inspired by Jarvis’s daughter, Anna Jarvis, who wanted to honor her own mother by making Mother’s Day a national holiday–the John Wanamaker department store in Philadelphia sponsored a service dedicated to mothers in its auditorium.
  3. Thanks in large part to this association with retailers, who saw great potential for profit in the holiday, Mother’s Day caught on right away. In 1909, 45 states observed the day, and in 1914, President Woodrow Wilson approved a resolution that made the second Sunday in May a holiday in honor of “that tender, gentle army, the mothers of America.”
  4. The campaign to celebrate the nation’s fathers did not meet with the same enthusiasm–perhaps because, as one florist explained, “fathers haven’t the same sentimental appeal that mothers have.”
  5. The present celebration of the Father’s Day goes back to the time of Middle Ages when the celebration of fatherhood was done with a customary day in the Catholic Europe that was observed on 19th March. The day was celebrated as the feast day of Saint Joseph who is known as the fatherly Nutritor Domini or the “Nourisher of the Lord” in the Catholic Community and is “the putative father of Jesus” in the southern European tradition. The festival was later brought to Americans by the Spanish and Portuguese whereas in Latin American countries, the occasion is still celebrated on 19th March.
  6. On July 5, 1908, a West Virginia church sponsored the nation’s first event explicitly in honor of fathers, a Sunday sermon in memory of the 362 men who had died in the previous December’s explosions at the Fairmont Coal Company mines in Monongah, but it was a one-time commemoration and not an annual holiday.
  7. The next year, a Spokane, Washington, woman named Sonora Smart Dodd, one of six children raised by a widower, tried to establish an official equivalent to Mother’s Day for male parents. She went to local churches, the YMCA, shopkeepers and government officials to drum up support for her idea, and she was successful: Washington State celebrated the nation’s first statewide Father’s Day on June 19, 1910.
  8. Slowly, the holiday spread. In 1916, President Wilson honored the day by using telegraph signals to unfurl a flag in Spokane when he pressed a button in Washington, D.C. In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge urged state governments to observe Father’s Day.
  9. During the 1920s and 1930s, a movement arose to scrap Mother’s Day and Father’s Day altogether in favor of a single holiday, Parents’ Day. Every year on Mother’s Day, pro-Parents’ Day groups rallied in New York City’s Central Park–a public reminder, said Parents’ Day activist and radio performer Robert Spere, “that both parents should be loved and respected together.”
  10. Paradoxically, however, the Great Depression derailed this effort to combine and de-commercialize the holidays. Struggling retailers and advertisers redoubled their efforts to make Father’s Day a “second Christmas” for men, promoting goods such as neckties, hats, socks, pipes and tobacco, golf clubs and other sporting goods, and greeting cards.
  11. When World War II began, advertisers began to argue that celebrating Father’s Day was a way to honor American troops and support the war effort. By the end of the war, Father’s Day may not have been a federal holiday, but it was a national institution.
  12. In 1972, in the middle of a hard-fought presidential re-election campaign, Richard Nixon signed a proclamation making Father’s Day a federal holiday at last.
  13. Today, economists estimate that Americans spend more than $1 billion each year on Father’s Day gifts.
  14. The Father’s Day is celebrated across the world with the objective of realizing and honoring the contribution of fathers in the society. It is a day which celebrates the fatherhood, paternal bonds and the efforts of male parents towards their family and society. The day is meant to recall, recognize and remember the endless efforts, initiatives and contributions of all the fathers around us. Father’s Day is an occasion to honor all the fatherly figures like stepfathers, grandfathers, uncles or even big brothers.

Thanks Dads!

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Slowly I Turned, Step by Step…

(top) What-the-??? Who turned off the water?? Read on and find out. (row 2) Free flowing Niagra Falls.  (row 3) Thousands of tourists come every year to see this natural wonder.  (row 4) Many, many daredevils have tested the falls. Here, Daredevil Nik Wallenda makes his historic tightrope walk across the Horseshoe Falls on June 15, 2012. Zeesh!!  (row 5 left)  There’s daredevil Karel Soucek with his barrel before going over the Horseshoe falls in 1984.  (row 5 right)  There’s Karel being fished out of the river after going over the falls. (row 6 left) There’s Karel being wheeled out of the hospital after surgery. (row 6 right)  And there’s Karel a year later, after a barrel drop at the Astrodome in Houston, TX.in 1985.  R.I.P. Dear Karel Soucek.  (row 7 left)  Skylon Tower observation decks. (row 7 right) Getting up close to these incredible falls. (row 8 left) Niagra Falls is one of the greatest places for a memorable family vacation.  (row 8 right)  Apparently you can go zip-lining across the falls now. Yikes!!  (row 9) This looks like the place to stay on your visit. Remember to ask for a room facing the falls, though. (bottom)  A wonderful oil painting by American artist Thomas Cole in 1830 titled “Distant View of Niagara Falls”.  Looks like a couple of native Americans in the foreground. Probably Iroquois.

As we plan our summer breaks, I have great memories of Mom and Dad loading up the car, piling in the kids and heading off on adventures. One of my favorites is the trips we took to Niagara Falls. My lovely wife is from the Buffalo area and could never really understand my infatuation with “THE FALLS”   My memories of the Maid of The Mist ride, overlooks by the falls, and visiting Canada round out “going to see the Falls” – (I can still taste the fudge and feel the roar of the water). One year Jackie and I took our very young girls for a visit and as we walked into the hotel room, the wall facing the falls was floor to ceiling glass!  You felt like you were going to fall in. The girls dropped to their knees and crawled over to the window!  They still laugh about it to this day. This year marks the 50th anniversary of when engineers constructed a temporary dam at the mouth of the Niagara River to shut off the water flow and clear out the bedrock that had fallen at the foot of the falls (talk about a PIA Job!). Here’s some fun trivia about the project and the Falls.  Enjoy, and thanks Smithsonian and streetdirectory.com for the info.

  1. Niagara Falls has seen plenty of dramatic stunts over the centuries, ever since a local hotel owner sent a condemned ship with a “cargo of ferocious animals” over the falls in 1827 (only the goose survived the plunge).  But no feat has attracted more visitors than a scientific survey conducted in 1969, the year the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers actually turned off the American Falls.
  2. The engineers wanted to find a way to remove the unseemly boulders that had piled up at its base since 1931, cutting the height of the falls in half. The first weekend after the “dewatering,” about 100,000 people showed up to see this natural wonder without its liquid veil.
  3. It is estimated more than 250,000 tons of shale and dolomite sit at the base of the Falls.  To turn off the water, dump trucks pushed nearly 30,000 tons of earth across a 600-foot-wide opening in the river.  Instead of trying to divert all the water around to the Horseshoe Falls, engineers used the International Control Dam to redirect more than 59,000 gallons per second in to the nearby hydroelectric plants.
  4. The amount of electricity the power plants at Niagara Falls have the capacity to output is close to 4.9 million kilowatts – enough to power 3.8 million homes. On the US side, plants have a capacity of roughly 2.7 million Kilowatts, while the Canadian side’s combined capacity is close to 2.2 million kilowatts.
  5. With the river down to a trickle, a sprinkler system was installed to keep the rock face wet and prevent heat and wind damage.  After six months of study, engineers decided to keep the rocks at the base in place.
  6. The 1969 dewatering was another aesthetic intervention, but the engineers decided, surprisingly, to leave the fallen boulders alone. “Recent emphasis on environmental values has raised questions about changing natural conditions even for demonstrated natural and measurable social benefits,” they wrote in their final report.
  7. The falls—American Falls, Horseshoe Falls and the small Bridal Veil Falls—formed some 12,000 years ago, when water from Lake Erie carved a channel to Lake Ontario (see map).
  8. The name Niagara came from “Onguiaahra,” as the area was known in the language of the Iroquois people who settled there originally.
  9. After the French explorer Samuel de Champlain described the falls in 1604, word of the magnificent sight spread through Europe. A visit to Niagara Falls was practically a religious experience for many – two famous visitors stated:
    “When I felt how near to my Creator I was standing,” Charles Dickens wrote in 1842, “the first effect, and the enduring one—instant lasting—of the tremendous spectacle, was Peace.”
    Alexis de Tocqueville described a “profound and terrifying obscurity” on his visit in 1831, but he also recognized that the falls were not as invincible as they seemed. “Hasten,” Tocqueville urged a friend in a letter, or “your Niagara will have been spoiled for you.”
  10. In 1894, King C. Gillette, the future razor magnate, predicted Niagara Falls could become part of a city called Metropolis with 60 million people. A few years later, Nikola Tesla designed one of the first hydroelectric plants near the Falls. He saw it as a high point in human history: “It signifies the subjugation of natural forces to the service of man.”
  11. One and a half million gallons of water flow through the Niagara River (it’s not really a river, but a strait) every second – or one cubic mile every week and helps drains 255,000 square miles of mid-continental North America.  The water starts off in North America, coming from streams and rivers that empty into 5 out of the 6 Great Lakes; Michigan, Superior, Huron, St. Clair and Erie. These lakes drain a large part of North America, flowing down through the Great Lakes basin from West to East. The entire volume of water in those lakes is enough to cover the whole of North America in about 3.5ft (1 meter) of water.
  12. The drop from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario is 330 feet depending on seasonal water levels. The water depth of the lower rapids is 45 – 60 feet, with currents of up to 30 m.p.h. The famous whirlpool at the bottom of the Falls is 126 feet deep at the water level and spins around in a counterclockwise direction.
  13. Seven people have gone over the Horseshoe Falls in a barrel. Four lived, three died.  Only two living things have been actually seen to go over the Falls safely without special protection – a dog over the American Falls in the 1800’s and a boy over the Horseshoe Falls in 1960.
  14. Five large boats and innumerable small ones have gone over the Falls, many with people in them.  A free swimmer has never conquered the lower rapids
  15. Niagara Falls today is the result of the push and pull of exploitation and preservation. The Free Niagara Movement successfully lobbied to create a park around the site in the 1880s, but the changes continued. In 1950, the United States and Canada decided to divert 50 percent of the water from Niagara Falls through underwater tunnels to hydroelectric turbines during peak tourist hours.
  16. At night, the water flow over the falls is cut in half again. Engineers manipulate the flow using 18 gates upstream. The engineers who built the diversion tunnels also made several modifications to the actual falls, excavated both edges of the Horseshoe Falls to create a visually pleasing crest.
  17. At some point, the United States and Canada will face the same dilemma again: Do they intervene to maintain the falls or let natural processes unfold? Even with the decreased rate of deterioration, the falls regress a little every year. In about 15,000 years, the cliff edge will reach a riverbed of soft shale—and then Nature will upstage any human efforts. Niagara Falls will crumble and irrevocably disappear.

 

Fun links:

Three Stooges!!
Fun music and video of the falls.
Relaxing Nature: Niagara Falls.

Rising

(top) I just love Dave Sandford’s photos of waves on Lake Erie…see more photos and his story HERE. (row two) A profile of all the great lakes. Erie is by far the shallowest. (row three) A really cool illustration of what’s going on with the water. (row four) A map of our location and a Great Lakes water flow map. Who knew? (row five) A nice simple wind set-up illustration. (row six) No, it’s not a graph of my heart rate while at a CAVS game, it’s actually 100 years of water levels on Lake Erie. Download a version you can even read. (row seven) High water levels or not, these people can still enjoy our fresh water lake. (row eight) This guy just caught a Perch! And if he knows what he’s doing in the kitchen, tonight’s dinner could look like this.  (row nine) Ducks over the lake. (bottom) A satellite view of the lakes. Ontario at the lower right. Huron at the middle right. And Erie in the middle. There I am waving to you at the base of that gigantic map pin. 

 

As I look out my window (yes, I have an THE most amazing view of Lake Erie), and watch another rain storm pass by, it got me to thinking about this year’s water levels in Lake Erie, and the surrounding great lakes.  What causes the levels to rise, how does the water flow, and will we have relief when the sun starts to burn through the clouds (hurry).  So, I did some digging and found some answers and trivia you can use at your next backyard cookout.  Enjoy, and special thanks to Laura Johnson, author of Rock the Lake (rockthelake.com) and The US Army Corp of Engineers for these great up to date links and info.

  1. Is Lake Erie higher than normal this year?Yep. Click this link  This means boaters are struggling to climb up from their docks as the waves are destroying property as it erodes beaches and bluffs.  The shoreline and marinas are dealing with ice and high-water damage.  So far, the lake is still 7 inches short of the record high set in 1986 (surprisingly it’s now about the same as last year). In mid-February, water levels jumped quickly, so they were nearly a foot higher than they were in early spring 2017, said Scudder Mackey, chief of the Coastal Management office for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.  Lake Erie is as high as many people can remember.  “This year it went through the roof,” said Rob Quinn, who lives on Kelleys Island four months a year and has seen his boat lifts torn right off the dock. “There are weird things happening because the water level is so high.”
  2. Do the winds effect water levels?The high-water level further intensifies a natural effect called a seiche (pronounced SAYSH) – a standing wave in an enclosed or partially enclosed body of water. Seiches and seiche-related phenomena have been observed on lakes, reservoirs, swimming pools, bays, harbors and seas.  Locally we experience a change in water level across the lake because of wind or atmospheric pressure. Winds across Lake Erie can mean a 10-foot differencebetween Toledo and Buffalo.
  3. What determines water levels?  All the Great Lakes have high water levels right now. Lake levels generally depend on the amount of precipitation in each watershed and the amount of evaporation of water off the lake – especially in the fall, when cold, dry air sucks moisture out of the warmer lakes. Get this great tracking link 
  4. Why do levels change?Water levels change very quickly on Lake Erie because it’s so small and shallow, Mackey said.  “You could have a major precipitation event and the next day you’ll see a change in the water level.”  Lake Erie levels are also affected by the amount of precipitation in the upper Great Lakes: Superior, Michigan and Huron.  About 92 percent of the water in Lake Erie comes from the upper lakes, through the Detroit River, into Lake Erie. Lake Erie then flows into the Niagara River, into Lake Ontario.
  5. Why are lake levels high?There was an increase in rain and snow the last two years in the upper lakes, Mackey said. There were also more frequent, stronger storms on Lake Erie, especially this past June.
  6. Have lake levels broken records?  Not this year.  Lake Ontario broke records last year, but for Erie, the highest water was in 1986. That was 7 inches higher than now, according to the Army Corps of Engineers. There was high water across the Great Lakes in 1973 and 1974 and in 1997 and 1998, Mackey said. In 1999, the water level dropped dramatically, about 3 feet. It stayed relatively steady until about 2007, when It gradually began to build.
  7. Can the government control water levels? There is no human regulation of water levels in Lake Erie, unlike in Lakes Superior and Ontario, at either end of the system, Mackey said. Ontario set records and suffered massive flooding last year.  Lake levels tend to be cyclical.
  8. What’s happening to land?  Clay bluffs in Lake and Ashtabula counties are especially susceptible to erosion and can quickly lose large slumps of land into the lake. Cuyahoga County has bedrock bluffs, which tend to be stronger.  Property owners have lost docks, stairs to their beach and structures meant to combat erosion, Mackey said. Though whole houses have fallen off cliffs in the past, he hasn’t seen that this year.
  9. How are people reacting?  Boaters may think the high-water levels are great, since they don’t have to worry about hitting rocks in shallow areas or having to deal with marinas being dredged, Mackey said.  But there are some issues for boaters.  On Facebook, Jeff Walker said boats cannot get under the Route 6 bridge in Vermilion and so, can’t leave the dock. John Ready said the east breakwall in the Cuyahoga River is barely visible, creating a hazard for inexperienced boaters.
  10. Is this effecting property owners?  Property owners have experienced major damage, though.  So far this spring, property on the east side of Kelleys Island lost 8-10 feet of land, said Ned Williams.  Quinn added 30 feet of concrete to his dock, so he can reach the end. “I’m just one guy. The whole shoreline is that way,” he said. “A lot of concrete trucks have been coming to Kelleys for construction projects.”
  11. What can property owners do?Many property owners installed sea walls, rivetments, groins, concrete modules and other kinds of shoreline protection the last time the lake was high, 30-40 years ago, Mackey said. Those projects are coming to the end of their useful life. “People will put almost anything in the water to try to protect their property,” Mackey said. “We want to make sure the materials that are used don’t pose a public health or safety hazard and don’t degrade Lake Erie. You don’t want broken up concrete with rebar sticking out.”
  12. What’s the forecast?  Lake Erie folks should see some relief. The Army corps of Engineers forecasts that lake levels will drop 3 inches by July 15.

 

Some things to do right now:
Watch & listen to the Eurythmics – Here Comes the Rain Again
Watch & listen to Singin In the Rain
And…
10 Things You Didn’t Know About Lake Erie

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Just let it be.

(top) Paul on the left, his mother Mary and brother Michael.  (row 2 l) Paul and his dog Martha;  (row 2 r) Paul taking a selfie…in the mirror.  (row 3) Paul in leather (row 4) Paul in bathrobe on the fence with the kids in Wales. Photo by Linda McCartney. (row 5) Cool stage photo. (row 6 l) Another cool stage photo. (row 6 r) Teenage Paul.  (bottom) Sir Paul with his fashion designer daughter Stella. 

 

Ever find yourself singing out loud in the car?  I’ve done it more times than I can remember, especially when I’m by myself. (Jackie and the girls let me know when it’s time to stop) USUALLY AFTER THE FIRST NOTE!!!.  The other day I was singing one of my favorite Beatles songs – Let It Be.  It’s one of those songs you just never get tired of.  I did some trivia digging and found some fun stuff about the original, the recording session and the interpretations of the song by other artists. Here’s a link to this great classic celebrating 50 years of entertaining us.  Enjoy!

Push the sound up and listen to Let It Be remastered in 2009 HERE.
Did you know that Aretha Franklin recorded and released Let It Be before the Beatles?? I didn’t either. Listen to the 2019 remastered recording HERE. It’s really amazing!

 

  1. Paul McCartney wrote this song, inspired by his mother, Mary, who died when he was 14. Many people thought “Mother Mary” was a biblical reference when they heard it.
  2. According to McCartney, this is a very positive song, owing to its inspiration. One night when he was paranoid and anxious, he had a dream where he saw his mother, who had been dead for ten years or so – she came to him in his time of trouble, speaking words of wisdom that brought him much peace when he needed it. It was this sweet dream that got him to begin writing the song.
  3. He told the story to James Corden when he appeared on his Carpool Karaoke segment. “She was reassuring me, saying, ‘It’s going to be OK, just let it be.’ I felt so great. She gave me the positive words. I woke up and thought, ‘What was that? She said ‘Let It Be.’ That’s good.’ So I wrote the song ‘Let It Be’ out of positivity.
  4. Since Let It Be was The Beatles last album, it made an appropriate statement about leaving problems behind and moving on in life. The album was supposed to convey an entirely different message. It was going to be called “Get Back,” and they were going to record it in front of an audience on live TV, with another TV special showing them practicing the songs in the studio. It was going to be The Beatles getting back to their roots and playing unadorned live music instead of struggling in the studio like they did for The White Album.
  5. When they started putting the album together, it became clear the project wouldn’t work and George Harrison left the sessions. When he returned, they abandoned the live idea and decided to use the TV footage as their last movie. While the movie was being edited, The Beatles recorded and released Abbey Road, then broke up. Eventually, Phil Spector was given the tapes and asked to produce the album, which was released months after The Beatles broke up. By then, it was clear “Let It Be” would be a better name than “Get Back.”
  6. Many have been moved by the song on a deeply personal level, including Corden, who broke down when they sang it together. “I remember my granddad, who was a musician, sitting me down and telling me, ‘I’m going to play you the best song you’ve ever heard,’ and he played me that,” he said. “If my granddad was here right now he’d get an absolute kick out of this.” McCartney replied, “He is.”
  7. John Lennon hated this song because of it’s apparent Christian overtones. He made the comment before recording it, “And now we’d like to do Hark The Angels Come.” Lennon saw to it that “Maggie Mae,” a song about a Liverpool prostitute, followed it on the album.
  8. You’ll hear different guitar parts on different versions on this song, as there were several overdubs of the solo. On April 30, 1969, George Harrison overdubbed a new guitar solo over the best take from the January 31, 1969 session. Harrison overdubbed another one on January 4, 1970, but there’s a possibility that it was actually McCartney on that overdub. The first overdub solo was used for the original single release, and the second overdub solo was used for the original album release. The Let It Be… Naked version is the one from the movie.
  9. The Beatles weren’t the first to release this song – Aretha Franklin was. The Queen of Soul recorded it in December 1969, and it was released on her album This Girl’s In Love With You in January 1970, two months before The Beatles released their version (she also covered The Beatles “Eleanor Rigby” on that album).
  10. Aretha recorded it with the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section, who were a group of musicians that owned their own studio in Alabama, but would travel to New York to record with Aretha. David Hood, who was their bass player, told us that Paul McCartney sent demos of the song to Atlantic Records (Franklin’s label) and to the Muscle Shoals musicians. Said Hood, “I kick myself for not grabbing that demo. Because I think they probably dropped it in the garbage. Our version was different. We changed it a little bit from his demo, where their version is different from that demo and from Aretha’s version, as well. Just slightly, but little things.”
  11. In April 1987, this was released as a charity single in aid of the The Sun newspaper’s Zeebrugge ferry disaster fund. Featuring Paul McCartney, Mark Knopfler, Kate Bush, Boy George and many others, it was called “Ferry Aid” and spent 3 weeks at #1 in the UK.
  12. Sesame Street used this with the title changed to “Letter B.” The lyrics were changed to list words that begin with B.
  13. This was the first Beatles song released in The Soviet Union. The single made it there in 1972.
  14. The album had the largest initial sales in US record history up to that time: 3.7 million advance orders.
  15. This song was played at Linda McCartney’s funeral.
  16. On July 18, 2008, Paul McCartney joined Billy Joel onstage at Shea Stadium in New York and played this as the final song of the final concert at Shea. As a member of The Beatles, McCartney played the first stadium rock concert when they performed at Shea on August 15, 1965.
  17. According to Ian Macdonald’s book Revolution in the Head, McCartney wrote “Let It Be” and “The Long and Winding Road” on the same day.
  18. John Legend and Alicia keys performed this song on the tribute special The Beatles: The Night That Changed America, which aired in 2014 exactly 50 years after the group made their famous appearance on Ed Sullivan Show. Legend introduced it as “a song that has comforted generations with its beauty and its message.”

For more trivia, visit:  https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0065976/trivia

 


 

Click

Under the cat evil eying the mouse photo is Douglas Engelbart and his 1964 mouse invention. The computer mouse has come a long way, baby. So, if you’re using a mouse a lot like I do you need a mouse pad to keep from scraping the finish off your table. Under the red mouse are a few of the thousands of options for mouse pads out there. While kittens and puppies are cute and really popular, I prefer food. Especially that cool hamburger pad in the lower right that someone made…keeps your mouse hand warm in the winter, too.

 

Click. Click. Click. It’s something we hardly think about as we meander all over our computer screens.  Documents come to life, edits take seconds to complete, and zillions of websites are just a “click” away.  While I was reviewing all of your wonderful PIA (Pain In The @%$) Jobs (thank you by the way), I marveled at just how easy and efficient my mouse was performing (Wireless – I like my desk clean!). I then, of course, went to my favorite Google search and captured some great information about the history, creation and variations of “mice”, and of course was amazed at all the info found on Wikipedia. This week marks a milestone in the development and evolution of the mouse – especially the creation of the “roller ball” (oh, so pre-2000 – ha!) and just how lucky we are to have solutions coming out of R&D. (bravo to all the R&D gang out there – we love you for your courage and ability to reach).  Special thanks to all the developers and innovations, and our friends at Wikipedia for the history.  Enjoy! (and be sure to “Click” me an email if you found this post of interest skowalski@khtheat.com  – always love to hear from my peeps!

 

 

  1. A computer mouse is a hand-held pointing device that detects two-dimensional motion relative to a surface. This motion is typically translated into the motion of a pointer on a display, which allows a smooth control of the graphical user interface.
  2. The first public demonstration of a mouse controlling a computer system was in 1968. Mice originally used a ball rolling on a surface to detect motion, but modern mice often have optical sensors that have no moving parts. In addition to moving a cursor, computer mice have one or more buttons to allow operations such as selection of a menu item on a display.
  3. The earliest known publication of the term mouse as referring to a computer pointing device is in Bill English’s July 1965 publication, “Computer-Aided Display Control” likely originating from its resemblance to the shape and size of a mouse, a rodent, with the cord resembling its tail.
  4. The trackball, a related pointing device, was invented in 1946 by Ralph Benjamin as part of a post-World War II-era fire-control radar plotting system called Comprehensive Display System (CDS). Benjamin was then working for the British Royal Navy Scientific Service. Benjamin’s project used analog computers to calculate the future position of target aircraft based on several initial input points provided by a user with a joystick. Benjamin felt that a more elegant input device was needed and invented what they called a “roller ball” for this purpose.  The device was patented in 1947, but only a prototype using a metal ball rolling on two rubber-coated wheels was ever built, and the device was kept as a military secret.
  5. Another early trackball was built by British electrical engineer Kenyon Taylor in collaboration with Tom Cranston and Fred Longstaff. Taylor was part of the original Ferranti Canada, working on the Royal Canadian Navy’s DATAR (Digital Automated Tracking and Resolving) system in 1952.  When the ball was rolled, the pickup discs spun and contacts on their outer rim made periodic contact with wires, producing pulses of output with each movement of the ball. By counting the pulses, the physical movement of the ball could be determined. A digital computer calculated the tracks and sent the resulting data to other ships in a task force using pulse-code modulation radio signals.
  6. Douglas Engelbart of the Stanford Research Institute (now SRI International) has been credited as the inventor of the computer mouse.
  7. In 1964, Bill English joined ARC, where he helped Engelbart build the first mouse prototype. They christened the device “the mouse” as early models had a cord attached to the rear part of the device which looked like a tail, and in turn resembled the common mouse. As noted above, this “mouse” was first mentioned in print in a July 1965 report, on which English was the lead author.  On 9 December 1968, Engelbart publicly demonstrated the mouse at what would come to be known as The Mother of All Demos. Engelbart never received any royalties for it, as his employer SRI held the patent, which expired before the mouse became widely used in personal computers.
  8. On October 2, 1968, a mouse device named Rollkugel (German for “rolling ball”) was described as an optional device for its SIG-100 terminal was developed by the German company Telefunken.  As the name suggests and unlike Engelbart’s mouse, the Telefunken model already had a ball. It was based on an earlier trackball-like device (also named Rollkugel) that was embedded into radar flight control desks. This trackball had been developed by a team led by Rainer Mallebrein at Telefunken Konstanz for the German Bundesanstalt für Flugsicherung (Federal Air Traffic Control).
  9. When the development for the Telefunken main frame TR 440 [de] began in 1965, Mallebrein and his team came up with the idea of “reversing” the existing Rollkugel into a moveable mouse-like device, so that customers did not have to be bothered with mounting holes for the earlier trackball device.
  10. The Xerox Alto was one of the first computers designed for individual use in 1973 and is regarded as the first modern computer to utilize a mouse.
  11. By 1982, the Xerox 8010 was probably the best-known computer with a mouse. The Sun-1 also came with a mouse, and the forthcoming Apple Lisa was rumored to use one, but the peripheral remained obscure; Jack Hawley of The Mouse House reported that one buyer for a large organization believed at first that his company sold lab mice. Hawley, who manufactured mice for Xerox, stated that “Practically, I have the market all to myself right now”; a Hawley mouse cost $415.
  12. That same year, Microsoft made the decision to make the MS-DOS program Microsoft Word mouse-compatible and developed the first PC-compatible mouse. Microsoft’s mouse shipped in 1983, thus beginning the Microsoft Hardware division of the company.  However, the mouse remained relatively obscure until the appearance of the Macintosh 128K (which included an updated version of the Lisa Mouse) in 1984 and of the Amiga 1000 and the Atari ST in 1985.
  13. The ball mouse has two freely rotating rollers. These are located 90 degrees apart. One roller detects the forward–backward motion of the mouse and other the left–right motion. Opposite the two rollers is a third one that is spring-loaded to push the ball against the other two rollers. Each roller is on the same shaft as an encoder wheel that has slotted edges; the slots interrupt infrared light beams to generate electrical pulses that represent wheel movement. Each wheel’s disc has a pair of light beams, located so that a given beam becomes interrupted or again starts to pass light freely when the other beam of the pair is about halfway between changes.
  14. Simple logic circuits interpret the relative timing to indicate which direction the wheel is rotating. This incremental rotary encoder scheme is sometimes called quadrature encoding of the wheel rotation, as the two optical sensors produce signals that are in approximately quadrature phase. The mouse sends these signals to the computer system via the mouse cable, directly as logic signals in very old mice such as the Xerox mice, and via a data-formatting IC in modern mice.
  15. Optical mice rely entirely on one or more light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and an imaging array of photodiodes to detect movement relative to the underlying surface, eschewing the internal moving parts a mechanical mouse uses in addition to its optics. A laser mouse is an optical mouse that uses coherent (laser) light.
  16. The earliest optical mice detected movement on pre-printed mousepad surfaces, whereas the modern LED optical mouse works on most opaque diffuse surfaces; it is usually unable to detect movement on specular surfaces like polished stone. With battery powered, wireless optical mice, they flash the LED intermittently to save power, and only glow steadily when movement is detected.
  17. Often called “air mice” since they do not require a surface to operate, inertial mice use a tuning fork or other accelerometer (US Patent 4787051[48]) to detect rotary movement for every axis supported. The most common models (manufactured by Logitech and Gyration) work using 2 degrees of rotational freedom and are insensitive to spatial translation. The user requires only small wrist rotations to move the cursor, reducing user fatigue or “gorilla arm”.
  18. In 2000, Logitech introduced a “tactile mouse” that contained a small actuator to make the mouse vibrate. Such a mouse can augment user-interfaces with haptic feedback, such as giving feedback when crossing a window boundary.
  19. When holding a typical mouse, ulna and radius bones on the arm are crossed. Some designs attempt to place the palm more vertically, so the bones take more natural parallel position.  Some limit wrist movement, encouraging arm movement instead, that may be less precise but more optimal from the health point of view. A mouse may be angled from the thumb downward to the opposite side – this is known to reduce wrist pronation.  However, such optimizations make the mouse right or left hand specific, making more problematic to change the tired hand. Time magazine has criticized manufacturers for offering few or no left-handed ergonomic mice: “Oftentimes I felt like I was dealing with someone who’d never actually met a left-handed person before.” (I can relate!!)
  20. Gaming mice are specifically designed for use in computer games. mice. It is also common for gaming mice, especially those designed for use in real-time strategy games such as StarCraft, or in multiplayer online battle arena games such as Dota 2 to have a relatively high sensitivity, measured in dots per inch (DPI).  Some advanced mice from gaming manufacturers also allow users to customize the weight of the mouse by adding or subtracting weights to allow for easier control.
  21. Cordless or wireless mice transmit data via infrared radiation (see IrDA) or radio (including Bluetooth and Wi-Fi).
  22. The mousepad, the most common mouse accessory, appears most commonly in conjunction with mechanical mice, because to roll smoothly the ball requires more friction than common desk surfaces usually provide. So-called “hard mousepads” for gamers or optical/laser mice also exist.

  1. The world’s most expensive mouse is the Gold Bullion mouse – only $36,835 each …. (“I’ll take two please”
    Or get this knock-off on Amazon for $27.60.

 

Don’t like to read? 
Here’s a history of the mouse in video form.

 

A fun Commercial from the 1990’s introducing a computer store.
A friend of mine was the art director on this LDI Computer Superstore spot. 

writer: Chris Hunter art director: Dan Fauver  ad agency: Wyse

 

Coloring Contest!
Color this picture (or have your seven-year-old color it for you). The best coloring job as determined by the KHT staff will win a fabulous KHT t-shirt!

 

The 10-Second Game!
Solve this puzzle in ten seconds to win. Ready! Set! GO!!!!
The winner will receive the satisfaction of knowing they can keep-up with a second-grader. Happy puzzling!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

One If by Land…

(top) Portrait of silversmith Paul Revere with one of his silver pieces by J. S. Copley.  (row two l) An engraving by Paul Revere depicting the Boston Massacre. (row two r) Pre-Revolutionary War Paul Revere Silver Coffee Pot, circa 1775. (row three) Paul’s sig. (rows four – six) Some of the many paintings of Paul Revere. (bottom left) Paul Revere and the Raiders album cover, circa 1967. (bottom right) Paul was a dentist, too.  He made his own dental instruments. That was 130 years before novocaine. Yikes!

 

Networking.  Something that we’ve come quite accustomed to today. Whether it’s clicking your social media links, joining a conference call, logging in to a podcast, shouting across the shop floor or just visiting with friends at the local coffee shop, we all rely on networks to communicate, share information and keep ourselves up to date.  History is filled with famous networks – from the cults of ancient Rome, to plotting European kings and queens, the silk rode of China, South American trading routes, Stalin’s secret police, the banking and investment industries, the Free Masons and of course modern-day Alibaba, Instagram and Twitter.  Staying connected and getting news to the people changed when Guttenberg started pushing paper through his press and has now been overtaken by the immediacy of the internets.  One network that is entwined in our American history is the famous ride of Paul Revere. Last weekend marked the anniversary of his 1775 ride through New England towns, supported by a network of lanterns, church bells and fellow riders. I absolutely love re-learning the history of our great country!   Special thanks to Wikipedia and history.com for the insights and details.  Enjoy the unique details below and be sure to turn your porch light on tonight in memory of his efforts.

  1. Paul Revere was an American silversmith, engraver, early industrialist, and Patriot in the American Revolution. He is best known for his midnight ride to alert the colonial militia in April 1775 to the approach of British forces before the battles of Lexington and Concord.
  2. Revere was born in the North End of Boston on December 21, 1734.  His father, a French Huguenot born Apollos Rivoire came to Boston at the age of 13 and was apprenticed to the silversmith John Coney.  By the time he married Deborah Hitchborn, a member of a long-standing Boston family that owned a small shipping wharf, in 1729, Rivoire had anglicized his name to Paul Revere. Their son, Paul Revere, was the third of 12 children and eventually the eldest surviving son.
  3. Revere grew up in the environment of the extended Hitchborn family, and never learned his father’s native language.  At 13 he left school and became an apprentice to his father. The silversmith trade afforded him connections with a cross-section of Boston society, which would serve him well when he became active in the American Revolution.
  4. Revere’s father died in 1754, when Paul was legally too young to officially be the master of the family silver shop.  In February 1756, during the French and Indian War, he enlisted in the provincial army. Possibly he made this decision because of the weak economy, since army service promised consistent pay.  Commissioned a second lieutenant in a provincial artillery regiment, he spent the summer at Fort William Henry at the southern end of Lake George in New York as part of an abortive plan for the capture of Fort St. Frédéric, but soon returned to run the family business.
  5. Revere’s business began to suffer when the British economy entered a recession in the years following the Seven Years’ War and declined further when the Stamp Act of 1765 resulted in a further downturn in the Massachusetts economy.  Business was so poor that an attempt was made to attach his property in late 1765. To help make ends meet he even took up dentistry, a skill set he was taught by a practicing surgeon who lodged at a friend’s house. One client was Doctor Joseph Warren, a local physician and political opposition leader with whom Revere formed a close friendship.  Revere and Warren, in addition to having common political views, were also both active in the same local Masonic lodges.
  6. Although Revere was not one of the “Loyal Nine”—organizers of the earliest protests against the Stamp Act—he was well connected with its members, who were laborers and artisans.  Revere did not participate in some of the more raucous protests, such as the attack on the home of Lieutenant Governor Thomas Hutchinson.  In 1765, a group of militants who would become known as the “Sons of Liberty” formed, of which Revere was a member. From 1765 on, in support of the dissident cause, he produced engravings and other artifacts with political themes. Among these engravings are a depiction of the arrival of British troops in 1768 (which he termed “an insolent parade”) and a famous depiction of the March 1770 Boston Massacre.
  7. In 1770 Revere purchased a house on North Square in Boston’s North End. Now a museum, the house provided space for his growing family while he continued to maintain his shop at nearby Clark’s Wharf. His wife Sarah died in 1773, and on October 10 of that year, Revere married Rachel Walker (1745–1813). They had eight children, three of whom died young.
  8. In November 1773 the merchant ship Dartmouth arrived in Boston harbor carrying the first shipment of tea made under the terms of the Tea Act.  This act authorized the British East India Company to ship tea directly to the colonies, bypassing colonial merchants. Passage of the act prompted calls for renewed protests against the tea shipments, on which Townshend duties were still levied.  Revere and Warren, as members of the informal North End Caucus, organized a watch over the Dartmouth to prevent the unloading of the tea. Revere took his turns on guard duty and was one of the ringleaders in the Boston Tea Party of December 16, when colonists, some disguised as Indians, dumped tea from the Dartmouth and two other ships into the harbor.
  9. From December 1773 to November 1775, Revere served as a courier for the Boston Committee of Public Safety, traveling to New York and Philadelphia to report on the political unrest in Boston. Research has documented 18 such rides. In 1774, his cousin John on the island of Guernsey wrote to Paul that John had seen reports of Paul’s role as an “express” courier in London newspapers.
  10. In 1774, the military governor of Massachusetts, General Thomas Gage, dissolved the provincial assembly on orders from Great Britain, closed the port of Boston and all over the city forced private citizens to quarter (provide lodging for) soldiers in their homes.
  11. During this time, Revere and a group of 30 “mechanics” began meeting in secret at his favorite haunt, the Green Dragon, to coordinate the gathering and dissemination of intelligence by “watching the Movements of British Soldiers”. Around this time Revere regularly contributed politically charged engravings he made at his silversmith shop to the recently founded Patriot monthly, Royal American Magazine.
  12. He rode to Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in December 1774 upon rumors of an impending landing of British troops there, a journey known in history as the Portsmouth Alarm. Although the rumors were false, his ride sparked a rebel success by provoking locals to raid Fort William and Mary, defended by just six soldiers, for its gunpowder supply.
  13. When British Army activity on April 7, 1775, suggested the possibility of troop movements, Joseph Warren sent Revere to warn the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, then sitting in Concord, the site of one of the larger caches of Patriot military supplies. After receiving the warning, Concord residents began moving the military supplies away from the town.
  14. One week later, on April 14, General Gage received instructions from Secretary of State William Legge, Earl of Dartmouth, to disarm the rebels, who were known to have hidden weapons in Concord, among other locations, and to imprison the rebellion’s leaders, especially Samuel Adams and John Hancock.
  15. Dartmouth gave Gage considerable discretion in his commands, issuing orders to Lieutenant Colonel Francis Smith to proceed from Boston “with utmost expedition and secrecy to Concord, where you will seize and destroy… all Military stores…. But you will take care that the soldiers do not plunder the inhabitants or hurt private property.” Gage did not issue written orders for the arrest of rebel leaders, as he feared doing so might spark an uprising.
  16. Between 9 and 10 p.m. on the night of April 18, 1775, Joseph Warren told Revere and William Dawes that the king’s troops were about to embark in boats from Boston bound for Cambridge and the road to Lexington and Concord. Warren’s intelligence suggested that the most likely objectives of the regulars’ movements later that night would be the capture of Adams and Hancock. They did not worry about the possibility of regulars marching to Concord, since the supplies at Concord were safe, but they did think their leaders in Lexington were unaware of the potential danger that night. Revere and Dawes were sent out to warn them and to alert colonial militias in nearby towns.
  17. In the days before April 18, Revere had instructed Robert Newman, the sexton of the North Church, to send a signal by lantern to alert colonists in Charlestown as to the movements of the troops when the information became known. In what is well known today by the phrase “one if by land, two if by sea”, one lantern in the steeple would signal the army’s choice of the land route while two lanterns would signal the route “by water” across the Charles River (the movements would ultimately take the water route, and therefore two lanterns were placed in the steeple).
  18. Revere first gave instructions to send the signal to Charlestown. He then crossed the Charles River by rowboat, slipping past the British warship HMS Somerset at anchor. Crossings were banned at that hour, but Revere safely landed in Charlestown and rode to Lexington, avoiding a British patrol and later warning almost every house along the route. The Charlestown colonists dispatched additional riders to the north.
  19. Riding through present-day Somerville, Medford, and Arlington, Revere warned patriots along his route, many of whom set out on horseback to deliver warnings of their own. By the end of the night there were probably as many as 40 riders throughout Middlesex County carrying the news of the army’s advance.
  20. Revere did not shout the phrase later attributed to him (“The British are coming!”): his mission depended on secrecy, the countryside was filled with British army patrols, and most of the Massachusetts colonists (who were predominantly English in ethnic origin) still considered themselves British.  Revere’s warning, according to eyewitness accounts of the ride and Revere’s own descriptions, was “The Regulars are coming out.”
  21. Revere arrived in Lexington around midnight, with Dawes arriving about a half-hour later. They met with Samuel Adams and John Hancock, who were spending the night with Hancock’s relatives (in what is now called the Hancock–Clarke House), and they spent a great deal of time discussing plans of action upon receiving the news. They believed that the forces leaving the city were too large for the sole task of arresting two men and that Concord was the main target.  The Lexington men dispatched riders to the surrounding towns, and Revere and Dawes continued along the road to Concord accompanied by Samuel Prescott, a doctor who happened to be in Lexington “returning from a lady friend’s house at the awkward hour of 1 a.m.”
  22. Revere, Dawes, and Prescott were detained by a British Army patrol in Lincoln at a roadblock on the way to Concord. Prescott jumped his horse over a wall and escaped into the woods; he eventually reached Concord. Dawes also escaped, though he fell off his horse not long after and did not complete the ride.
  23. Revere was captured and questioned by the British soldiers at gunpoint. He told them of the army’s movement from Boston, and that British army troops would be in some danger if they approached Lexington, because of the large number of hostile militia gathered there. He and other captives taken by the patrol were still escorted east toward Lexington, until about a half mile from Lexington they heard a gunshot. The British major demanded Revere explain the gunfire, and Revere replied it was a signal to “alarm the country”.
  24. As the group drew closer to Lexington, the town bell began to clang rapidly, upon which one of the captives proclaimed to the British soldiers “The bell’s a’ringing! The town’s alarmed, and you’re all dead men!”. The British soldiers gathered and decided not to press further towards Lexington but instead to free the prisoners and head back to warn their commanders.  The British confiscated Revere’s horse and rode off to warn the approaching army column. Revere walked to Rev. Jonas Clarke’s house, where Hancock and Adams were staying. As the battle on Lexington Green unfolded, Revere assisted Hancock and his family in their escape from Lexington, helping to carry a trunk of Hancock’s papers.
  25. The ride of the three men triggered a flexible system of “alarm and muster” that had been carefully developed months before, in reaction to the colonists’ impotent response to the Powder Alarm of September 1774. This system was an improved version of an old network of widespread notification and fast deployment of local militia forces in times of emergency. The colonists had periodically used this system all the way back to the early years of Indian wars in the colony, before it fell into disuse in the French and Indian War.
  26. In addition to other express riders delivering messages, bells, drums, alarm guns, bonfires, and a trumpet were used for rapid communication from town to town, notifying the rebels in dozens of eastern Massachusetts villages that they should muster their militias because the regulars in numbers greater than 500 were leaving Boston with possible hostile intentions. This system was so effective that people in towns 25 miles from Boston were aware of the army’s movements while they were still unloading boats in Cambridge.  Unlike in the Powder Alarm, the alarm raised by the three riders successfully allowed the militia to confront the British troops in Concord, and then harry them all the way back to Boston.
  27. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow popularized Paul Revere in The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, a poem first published in 1863 as part of Tales of a Wayside Inn.
  28. Revere’s friend and compatriot Joseph Warren was killed in the Battle of Bunker Hill on June 17, 1775. Because soldiers killed in battle were often buried in mass graves without ceremony, Warren’s grave was unmarked. On March 21, 1776, several days after the British army left Boston, Revere, Warren’s brothers, and a few friends went to the battlefield and found a grave containing two bodies.  After being buried for nine months, Warren’s face was unrecognizable, but Revere was able to identify Warren’s body because he had placed a false tooth in Warren’s mouth and recognized the wire he had used for fastening it. Warren was given a proper funeral and reburied in a marked grave.
  29. After the war, Revere developed advanced manufacturing for gunpowder, mastered the iron casting process and realizing substantial profits from this new product line. Revere identified a burgeoning market for church bells in the religious revival known as the Second Great Awakening that followed the war. Beginning in 1792 he became one of America’s best-known bell casters, working with sons Paul Jr. and Joseph Warren Revere in the firm Paul Revere & Sons. This firm cast the first bell made in Boston and ultimately produced hundreds of bells, a number of which remain in operation to this day.
  30. In 1794, Revere decided to take the next step in the evolution of his business, expanding his bronze casting work by learning to cast cannon for the federal government, state governments, and private clients. Although the government often had trouble paying him on time, its large orders inspired him to deepen his contracting and seek additional product lines of interest to the military.
  31. Revere remained politically active throughout his life. His business plans in the late 1780s were often stymied by a shortage of adequate money in circulation. Alexander Hamilton’s national policies regarding banks and industrialization exactly matched his dreams, and he became an ardent Federalist committed to building a robust economy and a powerful nation. Of particular interest to Revere was the question of protective tariffs; he and his son sent a petition to Congress in 1808 asking for protection for his sheet copper business.  He continued to participate in local discussions of political issues even after his retirement and circulated a petition offering the government the services of Boston’s artisans in protecting Boston during the War of 1812.
  32. Revere died on May 10, 1818, at the age of 83, at his home on Charter Street in Boston. He is buried in the Granary Burying Ground on Tremont Street.
  33. After Revere’s death, the family business was taken over by his oldest surviving son, Joseph Warren Revere. The copper works founded in 1801 continues today as the Revere Copper Company, with manufacturing divisions in Rome, New York and New Bedford, Massachusetts.
  34. The song “Me and Paul Revere”, written by musician Steve Martin and performed with his bluegrass group Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers, was inspired by the tale of Paul Revere’s ride and told from the point of view of Revere’s horse, Brown Beauty.

If you are intrigued by “networks” throughout history and up to the present day, be sure to read Niall Ferguson’s latest book, The Square and the Tower, Penguin Press 2018.

 

Hmmmmmm…

Hey, check it out. Jack Black looks a whole lot like Paul Revere. 

 

And for your listening pleasure…
>> Steve Martin ‘Me and Paul Revere’ (lyrics from the perspective of Paul’s horse)
>> Paul Revere and The Raiders – Kicks 1967

 

 

 


 

“Matoaka – can it really be 400 years?”

Some of the many depictions of Pocahontas: Saving John Smith at the top. Her marriage in the middle. And of course, gather the family for Disney’s version below the Jamestown fort construction images. (See some cool links at the end of this post.)

 

Isn’t the internet amazing. After catching up on some of my emails, following up your pesky, but fun PIA (Pain In The @%$) Jobs!, and running a few laps around the plants checking on your jobs, I took some time and started poking around trying to see what I could find for my blog today.  So many things to choose from – food, music, sports, (did I say food?) – this anniversary caught my eye.  Today marks the anniversary of a famous event that’s held our interest and nation’s folklore still to this day – the marriage of Pocahontas and John Rolfe. It reads like a classic romance novel… early encounters, anxious fathers, long travel across the sea, last minute life-saving action, kidnappings, clashes of cultures – and of love eternal (probably make for a great modern-day summer novel or internet movie). Anyhow, here’s the history and story, as captured by our friends at history.com. Enjoy!

 

In May 1607, about 100 English colonists settled along the James River in Virginia to found Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in America. The settlers fared badly because of famine, disease, and Indian attacks, but were aided by 27-year-old English adventurer John Smith, who directed survival efforts and mapped the area.

While exploring the Chickahominy River in December 1607, Smith and two colonists were captured by Powhatan warriors. At the time, the Powhatan confederacy consisted of around 30 Tidewater-area tribes led by Chief Wahunsonacock, known as Chief Powhatan to the English. Smith’s companions were killed, but he was spared and released, (according to a 1624 account by Smith) because of the dramatic intercession of Pocahontas, Chief Powhatan’s 13-year-old daughter.

Pocahontas was named Amonute at birth and went by the name Matoaka. She supposedly earned the nickname Pocahontas, which means “playful one,” because of her happy, inquisitive nature.  As the daughter of Chief Powhatan, Pocahontas may have had more luxuries than many of her peers, but she still had to learn so-called women’s work such as farming, cooking, collecting herbs, building a house, making clothes, butchering meat and tanning hides.

During the winter, Pocahontas’ brother kidnapped colonist Captain John Smith and made a spectacle of him in front of several Powhatan tribes before taking him to meet Chief Powhatan. According to Smith, his head was placed on two stones and a warrior prepared to smash his head and kill him. But before the warrior could strike, Pocahontas rushed to Smith’s side and placed her head on his, preventing the attack. Chief Powhatan then bartered with Smith, referred to him as his son and sent him on his way.

In 1608, Smith became president of the Jamestown colony, but the settlement continued to suffer. An accidental fire destroyed much of the town, and hunger, disease, and Indian attacks continued. During this time, Pocahontas often came to Jamestown as an emissary of her father, sometimes bearing gifts of food to help the hard-pressed settlers. She befriended the settlers and became acquainted with English ways.

Pocahontas became known by the colonists as an important Powhatan emissary. She occasionally brought the hungry settlers food and helped successfully negotiate the release of Powhatan prisoners.  But relations between the colonists and the Indians remained strained. By 1609, drought, starvation and disease had ravaged the colonists and they became increasingly dependent on the Powhatan to survive.

Desperate and dying, the settlers wanted to burn Powhatan towns for food, so Chief Powhatan suggested a barter with Captain Smith. When negotiations collapsed, the chief supposedly planned an ambush and Smith’s execution. But Pocahontas warned Smith of her father’s plans and saved his life again. In 1609, Smith was injured from a fire in his gunpowder bag and was forced to return to England.

After Smith’s departure, relations with the Powhatan deteriorated and many settlers died in the winter of 1609-10. Jamestown was about to be abandoned by its inhabitants when Baron De La Warr (also known as Delaware) arrived in June 1610 with new supplies and rebuilt the settlement (the Delaware River and the colony of Delaware were later named after him). John Rolfe also arrived in Jamestown in 1610 and two years later cultivated the first tobacco there, introducing a successful source of livelihood that would have far-reaching importance for Virginia.

Not much is known about Rolfe’s early life except that he was born around 1585 and was probably the son of a small landholder in Norfolk, England. In June 1609, Rolfe and his wife sailed for North America aboard the Sea Venture, as part of a new charter organized by the Virginia Company. The ship was caught in a hurricane in the Caribbean and wrecked on one of the Bermuda Islands. The group finally arrived in Virginia, near the Jamestown settlement, in May 1610, where Rolfe’s wife died soon after their arrival.

In the spring of 1613, English Captain Samuel Argall took Pocahontas hostage, hoping to use her to negotiate a permanent peace with her father. Brought to Jamestown, she was put under the custody of Sir Thomas Gates, the marshal of Virginia. Gates treated her as a guest rather than a prisoner and encouraged her to learn English customs.

Argall informed Chief Powhatan that he wouldn’t return Pocahontas unless he released English prisoners, returned stolen weapons and sent the colonists food. Much to Pocahontas’ dismay, her father only sent half the ransom and left her imprisoned.

While in captivity, Pocahontas lived in the settlement of Henricus under the care of a minister named Alexander Whitaker where she learned about Christianity, English culture and how to speak English. Pocahontas converted to Christianity, was baptized and given the name “Lady Rebecca.”

Powhatan eventually agreed to the terms for her release, but by then she had fallen in love with John Rolfe, who was about 10 years her senior. On April 5, 1614, Pocahontas and John Rolfe married with the blessing of Chief Powhatan and the governor of Virginia.

Their marriage brought a peace between the English colonists and the Powhatans, and in 1615 Pocahontas gave birth to their first child, Thomas. In 1616, the couple sailed to England. The so-called Indian Princess proved popular with the English gentry, and she was presented at the court of King James I.

In March 1617, Pocahontas and Rolfe prepared to sail back to Virginia from England.  Tragically, Pocahontas became ill during preparations for the voyage back to Virginia, probably from unfamiliar diseases that didn’t exist in America. She died in March 1617 and was buried there.

Young Thomas also took ill but later recovered. He stayed in England with Rolfe’s brother and didn’t return to America until many years later. Rolfe returned to Virginia two decades later at age 20 to claim inheritances from his father and grandfather and became a successful gentleman tobacco farmer. John Rolfe would never see his son again; he sailed back to Virginia and later remarried Joan Peirce (or Pearce), the daughter of one of the other colonists. In 1621, Rolfe was appointed to Virginia’s Council of State, as part of a reorganized colonial government.

With the death of Powhatan in 1618, the unstable peace between the English and Native Americans dissolved. The Algonquian tribes became increasingly angry over the colonists’ insatiable need for land, largely due to their desire to cultivate tobacco. In March 1622, the Algonquians (under Powhatan’s successor, Opechankeno) made a major assault on the English colony, killing some 350 to 400 residents, or a full one-quarter of the population. John Rolfe died that same year, although it is not known whether he was killed in the massacre or died under other circumstances

The Virginia Company commissioned a portrait of Pocahontas dressed in expensive clothes with an engraved label that said, “Matoaka, alias Rebecca, daughter of the most powerful prince of the Powhatan Empire of Virginia.” It is the only image drawn of her in person.

Pocahontas is buried at St. George’s church in Gravesend on March 21, 1617. She was instrumental to maintaining relations between her father and the Jamestown colonists and is believed to be the first Powhatan Indian to convert to Christianity. She is remembered as a courageous, strong woman who left an indelible impression on colonial America.

SOME VERY COOL POCAHONTAS LINKS:
Pocahontas  “Colors of the Wind”  Disney Sing-Along
19 things you didn’t know about Disney’s Pocahontas
Take your kids to meet Pocahontas on Discovery Island Trails at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park
Plan Your Family Visit Jamestown, VA 

 

 


 

It’s Starting

The signs of spring are all around us. Even around the Kowalski Heat Treating buildings.

Can you feel it?  And smell it?  Yep, spring is starting here on the beautiful Northcoast.  Like a little kid anxious for summer recess, I just love this time of year.  In so many ways – the air smells fresher, the sun’s rays seem to cast a different shadow on the ground, the sky is bluer, the ice begins to shrink on the Lake, and everyone just seems happier. I know for a fact that my significant other can’t wait to start to tackle the yard! In our KHT tradition, I thought I’d list a bunch of signs of spring’s arrival, sprinkled in with some of my own behaviors and observations. Enjoy. And if you have any ques of your own, shoot me an email or give me a call – would love to hear about them and share with our readers.

Snowdrops, daffodils and crocuses– This year, the first snowdrops were seen well in advance.  The delicate flowers are now making their brief appearance and in some places daffodils and crocuses are already out.  In my neighbor’s yard, a few have popped open.  Brilliant!
Celandines(buttercups)- These flowers are called celandines, and they look a quite similar to buttercups.  Keep an eye out for bundles of lesser celandine flowers in woodlands, hedgerows and in gardens. Their bright petals turn the ground into a sea of yellow; a reminder that the mild weather of spring and summer is yet to come.
Bumblebees– Bumblebees start buzzing around on warm days in spring – the best time to look out for them is in March and April. The first bumblebees during this time are the queens, searching for nectar and a good drink before finding the perfect grounds for her colony.  Meanwhile, the mining bees will begin emerging from their underground cells, leaving small, neat piles of soil around the exit holes.
The Shedding of the Snow blowers– It’s about this time of year when the guys on the street move their snow blowers to the shed and drag out their lawnmowers and leaf blowers.  Nothing like the sound of whining blowers, as the neighbors do a quick cleaning of their decks.
First Grilling– Can you resist that smell? My neighbors get brave again, fighting the chill in the air to get the first steak or ribs or chicken on the grill. In full disclosure, there really is nothing like grilling outside when it is snowing!
Frogs and Tadpoles– One of the first amphibians to emerge in spring is the frog. At this time, ponds come to life with frogs getting busy and laying their eggs, which look like small jelly-like bubbles floating in the water. On one of my runs, I could hear them calling early at sunrise.
Birds Singing– As the days gradually become lighter and temperatures start to lift, the birds begin to sing, rejoicing that the end of winter is close. Birds bring a wonderful soundtrack to spring that can be quite dazzling, the ones to listen out for include the song thrush, robin, bluejays and cardinals.  I love the call of the cardinals early in the morning.
Wild Garlic– It’s a favorite amongst chefs and is one of the most sought-after cooking ingredients. Go for a stroll in the woodlands during springtime and you might come across the smell of ramsons – otherwise known as wild garlic.  Wild garlic can be spotted by its lush green leaves that sprout in March, while its star-like white flowers appear in April.
Migrant Birds– During the transition period of winter into spring, many of us will start noticing winter birds leaving as the summer birds returning north.  Being on the coast, we are a resting area before the trek across the lake – favorite include: woodpeckers, blackbirds, sparrows and of course my favorite, named …the yellow bellied sapsucker.
The First Cut– I resist it as long as possible, because we all know, once you make the “first cut” of the lawn, it’s a weekly chore.  I have a few neighbors who love to be out there at the first sign of spring, lookin’ all perfect, before I’ve even reached for the pull cord.
Mulch Madness– After the first cuts of course, comes Mulch Madness. A favorite in our neighborhood, when landscapers and homeowners pull out the wheelbarrows, shovels and gloves and haul it around the yard.  It has a unique smell – and not always a pleasant one!
Ducklings & Squirrels– One of the most common animals associated with spring is ducklings, as mother ducks start to take care of their new babies. While others that might be seen in the garden, park or in local farmlands include lambs, badgers, rabbits and chicks. And are all the squirrels just happy to be outside – most in my yard sprint back and forth on the patio, and up and down the trees.
Finally Taking Down the Holiday Lights– Yep, I too have a few neighbors who decided it’s warm enough to get out the ladder and finish taking down the lights. Doesn’t work at my house – Jackie keeps me on my toes right after the New Year.
Shootin’ Hoops– Growing up, we thought getting out on the driveway and shootin’ hoops was the best.  With March madness in full swing and NBA playoffs near, the kids are reenacting the moves they see on TV. It keeps them active for hours, laughing and having fun. My favorite was playing PIG or HORSE… yours? . Here’s a link to some crazy crazy shots.  Bet you can’t stop watching.  :-))
The Tribe and Tom Hamilton– Here in NE Ohio, the words Tribe and Tom Hamilton go hand in hand.  I love to turn on games, and just listen to his brilliance, tracking each pitch, introducing us to new line ups and new players, and of course his famous “It’s way back … gone! calls for the big homers.  Like this one!!
First Buds– You can see them on the trees, and forsythia and pussy willows (smaller species of the genus Salix (willows and sallows) and first flowers popping out of the ground here at the main plant headquarters. I remember Mom cutting the pussywillows and bringing them into the house, where they’d stay for months – a reminder Easter in near.

 

 


 

What‘s In A Name

(row one)  Two of the great names I grew up with.  (row two)  Because of this great player, Napoleon Lajoie, the Cleveland Spiders were known as the Naps in the late 19th century.  (row three)   If you have this baseball card in your collection it’s probably worth a lot of wampum. Louis Sockalexis was the first native American to play in the big leagues. And it is said he’s the reason sports writers gave the team the nickname “Indians” which obviously stuck.   (row four)  All of the current pro team logos.  (row five)  Some people have suggested we go back to being called the “Spiders” so some local t-shirt makers came up with some cool designs. (row six)  I have a better idea.   (row seven)  Looks cool on jerseys, too.   (row eight)  Jim Thome! What a great player. And that little dude taking in the smells of the ballpark.   (row nine)  All this baseball talk makes me hungry. 

 

Kowalski Heat Treating – or KHT as we call it sometimes, was the brainchild of Dad.  Back in the day, he spent hours driving around Northeast Ohio, calling on customers and prospects, solving their (PIA) problems, shaking hands, and then bringing things back to the shop to do great work for them. Like any small business owner, it was his “word” and his reputation, every time a delivery went out the front door.  You can imagine the pride of delivering what’s been promised, and the anguish when something goes afoul. Much like having a personal doctor you can count on, or relationship with an attorney, customers came to rely on (Dad).  When I had the opportunity to come into the business, I had huge shoes to fill – Dad’s customers. Knowing his style, fulfilling his earned reputation, and most of all, keeping sacred the family’s “good name”. As we are rapidly approaching almost 50 years in business, I am proud to say the KHT name has certainly withstood the test of time.  I love talking for hours about our evolution, the great team that has been assembled, along with the numerous PIA jobs we have encountered over the years. At the end of the day it’s KHT’s good name– and our love of PIA jobs!

Talking about names, and with baseball spring training season in full swing, I was reading the box scores, and thinking about where all the baseball team names came from.  I found a great article on mentalfloss.com.  Look below and find your favorite teams – you’ll be surprised how some came to be – Enjoy!

  1. Arizona Diamondbacks– In 1995, the expansion franchise’s ownership group asked fans to vote from among a list of nicknames that included Coyotes, Diamondbacks, Phoenix, Rattlers, and Scorpions. Diamondbacks, a type of desert rattlesnake, was the winner, sparing everyone the mindboggling possibility of a team located in Phoenix, Arizona, called the Arizona Phoenix.
  2. Atlanta Braves– The Braves, who played in Boston and Milwaukee before moving to Atlanta in 1966, trace their nickname to the symbol of a corrupt political machine. James Gaffney, who became president of Boston’s National League franchise in 1911, was a member of Tammany Hall, the Democratic Party machine that controlled New York City politics throughout the 19th century. The Tammany name was derived from Tammamend, a Delaware Valley Indian chief. The society adopted an Indian headdress as its emblem and its members became known as Braves. Sportswriter Leonard Koppett described Gaffney’s decision to rename his team, “Wouldn’t it be neat to call the team the ‘Braves,’ waving this symbol of the Democrats under the aristocratic Bostonians?” It didn’t bother the fans, especially after the Braves swept the Philadelphia Athletics in the 1914 World Series.
  3. Baltimore Orioles– When the St. Louis Browns moved to Baltimore in 1954, the franchise was rebranded with the same nickname of the Baltimore team that dominated the old National League in the late 1890s. That was named after the state bird of Maryland and the orange and black colors of the male Oriole bird resembled the colors on the coat of arms of Lord Baltimore.
  4. Boston Red Sox– The team that became known as the Red Sox began play ” wearing dark blue socks, no less ” as a charter member of the American League in 1901. With no official nickname, the team was referred to by a variety of monikers, including Bostons and Americans. In 1907, Americans owner John Taylor announced that his team was adopting red as its new color after Boston’s National League outfit switched to all-white uniforms. Taylor’s team became known as the Red Sox, a name popularized by the Cincinnati Red Stockings from 1867-1870 and used by Boston’s National League franchise from 1871-1876.
  5. Chicago Cubs– When the team began to sell off its experienced players in the late 1880s, local newspapers began to refer to the club as Anson’s Colts, a reference to player-manager Cap Anson’s roster of youngsters. By 1890, Colts had caught on and Chicago’s team had a new nickname. When Anson left the team in 1897, the Colts became known as the Orphans, a depressing nickname if there ever was one. When Frank Selee took over managerial duties of Chicago’s youthful roster in 1902, a local newspaper dubbed the team the Cubs and the name stuck.
  6. Chicago White Sox– In 1900, Charles Comiskey moved the St. Paul Saints to the South Side of Chicago. The team adopted the former nickname of its future rivals (the Cubs) and became the White Stockings, which was shortened to White Sox a few years after the club joined the American League in 1901.
  7. Cincinnati Reds– The Cincinnati Red Stockings, so named because they wore red socks, were baseball’s first openly all-professional team. Red Stockings eventually became Redlegs, and Redlegs was shortened to Reds. Before the 1953 season, club officials announced that the team would once again officially be known as the Cincinnati Redlegs. Around the same time, the team temporarily removed “Reds” from its uniforms. As the AP reported in 1953, “The political significance of the word ‘Reds’ these days and its effect on the change was not discussed by management.”
  8. Cleveland Indians– Cleveland’s baseball team was originally nicknamed the Naps after star player-manager Napoleon Lajoie, so when the team cut ties with Lajoie after the 1914 season, it was in the market for a new name. Club officials and sportswriters agreed on Indians in January 1915. The Boston Braves’ miraculous World Series triumph may have been part of the inspiration behind Cleveland’s new moniker.
  9. Colorado Rockies– When team officials announced that Denver’s expansion team would begin play in 1993 as the Colorado Rockies, some fans couldn’t help but question why the team was adopting the same nickname as the city’s former NHL franchise. According to surveys conducted by Denver’s daily newspapers, fans preferred the nickname Bears, which had been used by Denver’s most famous minor league team.
  10. Detroit Tigers – Detroit’s original minor league baseball team was officially known as the Wolverines. The club was also referred to as the Tigers, the nickname for the members of Michigan’s oldest military unit, the 425th National Guard infantry regiment, which fought in the Civil War and Spanish-American War. When Detroit joined the newly formed American League in 1901, the team received formal permission from the regiment, which was known as the Detroit Light Guard, to use its symbol and nickname.
  11. Houston Astros– Houston’s baseball team was originally known as the Colt .45’s, but team president Judge Roy Hofheinz made a change “in keeping with the times” in 1965. Citing Houston’s status as “the space age capital of the world,” Hofheinz settled on Astros. “With our new domed stadium, we think it will also make Houston the sports capital of the world,” Hofheinz said. The change was likely also motivated by pressure from the Colt Firearms Company, which objected to the use of the Colt .45 nickname.
  12. Kansas City Royals– When Kansas City was awarded an expansion franchise in 1969, club officials chose Royals from more than 17,000 entries in a name-the-team contest. Sanford Porte, one of 547 fans who submitted Royals, was awarded an all-expenses-paid trip to the All-Star Game. Porte submitted the name because of “Kansas City’s position as the nation’s leading stocker and feeder market and the nationally known American Royal Livestock and Horse Show.
  13. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim – Los Angeles gained a second major league team in 1961 when the Los Angeles Angels entered the American League. The nickname had been used by Los Angeles’ Pacific Coast League team from 1903-1957. The team was renamed the California Angels in 1965 and became the Anaheim Angels after the Walt Disney Company took control of the team in 1997. While the team’s lease with the city requires that Anaheim be a part of the team name, owner Arte Moreno changed the team’s name to include Los Angeles in 2005 in hopes of tapping into the L.A. media market. The result is one of the most absurd names in all of professional sports.
  14. Los Angeles Dodgers– The Dodgers trace their roots to Brooklyn, where the team was known as the Bridegrooms, Superbas, and, beginning in 1911, the Trolley Dodgers, referencing the pedestrians who dodged the trolleys that carried passengers through the streets of Brooklyn. While the team was known as the Robins from 1914 to 1931, in honor of legendary manager Wilbert Robinson, the nickname switched back to Dodgers when Robinson retired. When Walter O’Malley moved the franchise to Los Angeles after the 1957 season, he elected to keep the name.
  15. Miami Marlins– The Marlins take their name from the minor league Miami Marlins that called South Florida home from 1956-1988. Owner Wayne Huizenga hoped to give his expansion team, which entered the league in 1993, more regional appeal by including Florida in the name. However, when the Marlins moved into their new baseball-only stadium in 2012, they became the Miami Marlins.
  16. Milwaukee Brewers– The Brewers nickname, a nod to Milwaukee’s beer industry, was used off and on by various Milwaukee baseball teams during the late 19th century. When the expansion Seattle Pilots relocated to Milwaukee after one failed season in 1969, the team adopted the traditional Brewers nickname under the ownership of Bud Selig.
  17. Minnesota Twins– Minneapolis and St. Paul, which are separated by the Mississippi River and collectively known as the Twin Cities, argued for years over where an expansion team in Minnesota, should one arrive, would call home. When the Washington Senators moved to Minneapolis in 1961, club officials settled on Twins as the team nickname and unveiled an emblem showing two baseball players with hands clasped in front of a huge baseball.
  18. New York Mets– Team officials asked fans to choose a nickname from among 10 finalists when New York was awarded an expansion National League franchise in 1961. The finalists were Avengers, Bees, Burros, Continentals, Jets, Mets, NYBS, Rebels, Skyliners, and Skyscrapers. Mets was the resounding winner. One of the reasons that team officials chose Mets was because “it has a brevity that will delight headline writers.”
  19. New York Yankees – In 1903, the original Baltimore Orioles moved to New York, where they became the Highlanders. As was common at the time, the team, which played in the American League, was also known as the New York Americans. New York Press editor Jim Price coined the nickname Yanks, or Yankees, in 1904 because it was easier to fit in headlines.
  20. Oakland Athletics– The Athletics nickname is one of the oldest in baseball, dating to the early 1860s and the Athletic Baseball Club of Philadelphia. In 1902, New York Giants manager John McGraw referred to Philadelphia’s American League team as a “white elephant.” The slight was picked up by a Philadelphia reporter and the white elephant was adopted as the team’s primary logo. The nickname and the elephant logo were retained when the team moved to Kansas City in 1955 and to Oakland in 1968.
  21. Philadelphia Phillies– Founded in 1883 as the Quakers, the franchise changed its nickname to the Philadelphias, which soon became Phillies. New owner Robert Carpenter held a contest to rename the team in 1943 and Blue Jays was selected as the winner. While the team wore a Blue Jay patch on its uniforms for a couple of seasons, the nickname failed to catch on.
  22. Pittsburgh Pirates– After the Players’ League collapsed in 1890, the National League’s Pittsburgh club signed two players, including Lou Bierbauer, whom the Philadelphia Athletics had forgotten to place on their reserve list. A Philadelphia sportswriter claimed that Pittsburgh “pirated away Bierbauer” and the Pirates nickname was born.
  23. San Diego Padres– When San Diego was awarded an expansion team in 1969, the club adopted the nickname of the city’s Pacific Coast League team, the Padres. The nickname, which is Spanish for father or priest, was a reference to San Diego’s status as the first Spanish Mission in California.
  24. San Francisco Giants– The New York Giants moved to San Francisco in 1957 and retained their nickname, which dates back to 1885. It was during that season, according to legend, that New York Gothams manager Jim Mutrie referred to his players as his “giants” after a rousing win over Philadelphia.
  25. Seattle Mariners– Mariners was the winning entry among more than 600 suggestions in a name-the-team contest for Seattle’s expansion franchise in 1976. Roger Szmodis of Bellevue provided the best reason. “I’ve selected Mariners because of the natural association between the sea and Seattle and her people, who have been challenged and rewarded by it.” Szmodis  received two season tickets and an all-expenses-paid trip to an American League city on the West Coast.
  26. St. Louis Cardinals– In 1899, the St. Louis Browns became the St. Louis Perfectos. That season, Willie McHale, a columnist for the St. Louis Republic reportedly heard a woman refer to the team’s red stockings as a “lovely shade of Cardinal.” McHale included the nickname in his column, and it was an instant hit among fans. The team officially changed its nickname in 1900.
  27. Tampa Bay Rays – Vince Naimoli, owner of Tampa Bay’s expansion team, chose Devil Rays out of more than 7,000 suggestions submitted by the public in 1995. The reaction was not positive. Naimoli reportedly wanted to nickname his team the Sting Rays, but it was trademarked by a team in the Hawaiian Winter League. The team dropped the “Devil” after the 2007 season and the curse that had plagued the franchise for the previous decade was apparently lifted, as Tampa Bay made a surprising run to the World Series the following season.
  28. Texas Rangers– A second franchise named the Senators left Washington in 1972, this time for Arlington, Texas. Owner Robert Short renamed the team the Rangers after the Texas law enforcement agency that was formed under Stephen F. Austin in the 1820s.
  29. Toronto Blue Jays– More than 30,000 entries were received during a five-week name-the-team contest. “The Blue Jays was felt to be the most appropriate of the final 10 names submitted,” according to a statement issued by the board’s chairman, R. Howard Webster. “The blue jay is a North American bird, bright blue in color, with white undercovering and a black neck ring. It is strong, aggressive and inquisitive. It dares to take on all comers, yet it is down-to-earth, gutsy and good-looking.”
  30. Washington Nationals – Washington’s original baseball team was interchangeably referred to as the Senators and Nationals, or Nats for short, for most of its time in the District before relocating to Minnesota in 1960. Washington’s 1961 expansion franchise was known almost exclusively as the Senators until it moved to Texas after the 1971 season. When the Montreal Expos relocated to the nation’s capital in 2005, the team revived the Nationals nickname.

A Couple of  Cool Videos:

AN IMPOSSIBLE CONTEST:
Pick the winner of the 2019 World Series and I’ll send you a cool KHT mug and an original KHT t-shirt with no sweat stains. Promise. I must have your entry by midnight, Tuesday April 30, 2019. Enter HERE. One entry per person. If more than one entry is received by the same person, only the first submission will be counted. (Unless you come up with a really interesting bribe.)

 


 

 

The Fight

(top half – b&w photos)  Cacius Clay changes his name to Muhammed Ali and goes down at the hands of Joe Frazier.  (lower half from the color photo down)  Ali gets his revenge. Twice! Magazine covers of Cacius Clay, Muhammed Ali vs Smokin’ Joe Frazier and Muhammed Ali’s come-back.  Laila Ali is kissed by her father before one of her matches.

As a sports guy I have certain memories locked in my memory banks (this is a big deal just ask Jackie!) Great diving catches, final at bat home runs, crazy dunks, ridiculous golf shots, Olympic moments of greatness and more.  As a kid, I used to join my Dad and older brother  to catch Muhammed Ali fights.  I can’t say I saw all of them, but the ones I did see, I can remember the way he moved, jabbed, slid punches, and trash talked his opponents. Ask any boxing fan, and you’ll hear stories about the Ali fights – the “Thrilla in Manilla”and the “Rumble in the Jungle”.  Today is the nearly 50-year anniversary of the first Ali/Frazier fight, simple called – “The Fight”, when two unbeatens, Muhammed Ali and Joe Frazier met in Madison Square Garden.  It was quite a show and set the stage for a number of rematches with the fighters trading the title of “champion”.  That was truly the “Golden Age” of boxing.  Enjoy, and thanks Wikipedia for this walk down memory lane and You Tube for the history.

Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier, billed as Fight of the Century (also known as just “The Fight”), was the boxing match between undefeated WBC/WBA heavyweight champion Joe Frazier (26–0, 23 KOs) and undefeated The Ring/lineal heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali (31–0, 25 KOs), held on March 8, 1971.  Held at Madison Square Garden in New York City, it was the first time that two undefeated boxers fought each other for the heavyweight title

In 1971, both Ali and Frazier had legitimate claims to the title of World Heavyweight Champion. An undefeated Ali had won the title from Sonny Liston in 1964, and successfully defended his belt up until he had it stripped by boxing authorities for refusing induction into the armed forces in 1967.

In Ali’s absence, the undefeated Frazier garnered two championship belts through knockouts of Buster Mathis and Jimmy Ellis and was recognized by boxing authorities as the World Champion. Unlike Mathis and Ellis, Frazier was plausibly Ali’s superior, which created a tremendous amount of hype and anticipation for a match pitting the two undefeated fighters against one another to decide who was the true heavyweight champ.

Ringside seats were an unheard-of price at $150 (equivalent to $1,000 today) and each man was guaranteed $2.5 million dollars – a hefty sum in those days. In addition to the millions who watched on closed-circuit broadcast screens around the world, the Garden was packed with a sellout crowd of 20,455 that provided a gate of $1.5 million.

Prior to his enforced layoff, Ali had displayed uncommon speed and dexterity for a man of his size. He had dominated most of his opponents to the point that he had often predicted the round in which he would knock them out (“don’t lock the doors – he’ll be done in 4”). However, in the fight preceding the Frazier fight, Ali struggled at times during his 15th-round TKO of Oscar Bonavena, an unorthodox Argentinian fighter, prepared by Hall of Fame trainer Gil Clancy.

Frazier was known for his outstanding left hook and a tenacious competitor who attacked the body of his opponent ferociously. Despite suffering from a serious bout of hypertension in the lead-up to the fight, he appeared to be in top form as the face-off between the two undefeated champions approached.

The fight held broader meaning for many Americans, as Ali had become a symbol of the anti-establishment war movement during his government-imposed exile from the ring, while Frazier had been adopted by the more conservative, pro-war movement. The match had been dubbed “The Fight” and gripped the nation. “Just listen to the roar of this crowd!” thundered Burt Lancaster, the color man. “The tension, and the excitement here, is monumental!”

The bout was noted for its general appeal with non-boxing and non-sport fans holding an impassioned rooting interest in one of the fighters. Mark Kram from Sports Illustrated at the time wrote:

The thrust of this fight on the public consciousness is incalculable. It has been a ceaseless whir that seems to have grown in decibel with each new soliloquy by Ali, with each dead calm promise by Frazier. It has magnetized the imagination of ring theorists and flushed out polemicists of every persuasion. It has cut deep into the thicket of our national attitudes, and it is a conversational imperative everywhere—from the gabble of big-city salons and factory lunch breaks rife with unreasoning labels, to ghetto saloons with their own false labels.

On the evening of the match, Madison Square Garden had a circus-like atmosphere, with scores of policemen to control the crowd, outrageously dressed fans, and countless celebrities, from Norman Mailer and Woody Allen to Frank Sinatra, who, after being unable to procure a ringside seat, took photographs for Life magazine instead. Artist LeRoy Neiman painted Ali and Frazier as they fought. Movie star Burt Lancaster served as a color commentator for the closed-circuit broadcast.

The fight was sold out, and broadcast by closed circuit, to 50 countries in 12 languages via ringside reporters to an audience estimated at 300 million, a record viewership for a television event at that time. Riots broke out at several venues as unresolvable technical issues interrupted the broadcast in several cities in the third round. The veteran referee for the fight was Arthur Mercante, Sr. saying after the fight, “They both threw some of the best punches I’ve ever seen.”

On both closed-circuit and free television, the fight was watched by a record 300 million viewers worldwide – a record 27.5 million viewers on BBC1 in the United Kingdom, about half of the British population. It was also watched by an estimated 54 million viewers in Italy, and 2 million viewers in South Korea – all WAY before cable, the internet and cell phones.

The fight itself exceeded even its promotional hype and went the full 15-round championship distance. Ali dominated the first three rounds, peppering the shorter Frazier with rapier-like jabs that raised welts on the champion’s face. In the closing seconds of round three, Frazier connected with a tremendous hook to Ali’s jaw, snapping his head back. Frazier began to dominate in the fourth round, catching Ali with several of his famed left hooks and pinning him against the ropes to deliver tremendous body blows.

Ali was visibly tired after the sixth round, and though he put together some flurries of punches after that round, he was unable to keep the pace he had set in the first third of the fight. At 1 minute and 59 seconds into round eight, following his clean left hook to Ali’s right jaw, Frazier grabbed Ali’s wrists and swung Ali into the center of the ring; however, Ali immediately grabbed Frazier again until they were once again separated by Mercante.

Frazier caught Ali with a left hook at nine seconds into round 11. A fraction of a second later, Ali fell with both gloves and his right knee on the canvas. Mercante stepped between Ali and Frazier, separating them as Ali rose from the canvas. As round 11 wound down with Frazier staggering Ali with a left hook, Ali stumbled and grabbed at Frazier to keep his balance before bouncing forward again until the fighters were separated by Mercante at 2:55 into the round. Ali spent the remaining 5 seconds of round 11 making his way back to his corner.

At the end of round 14 Frazier held a lead on all three scorecards (by scores of 8–6–0, 10–4–0, and 8–6–0). Early in round 15, Frazier landed a left hook that put Ali on his back. Ali, his jaw swollen grotesquely, got up from the blow quickly, and managed to stay on his feet for the rest of the round despite several terrific blows from Frazier.

A few minutes later the judges made it official: Frazier had retained the title with a unanimous decision, dealing Ali his first professional loss.

Frazier would surrender his title 22 months later, when on January 22, 1973, he was knocked out by George Foreman in the second round of their brief but devastating title bout in Kingston, Jamaica.

Ali biographer Wilfrid Sheed wrote of the fight:
Both men left the ring changed men that night. For Frazier, his greatness was gone, that unquantifiable combination of youth, ability and desire. For Ali, the public hatred he had so carefully nursed to his advantage came to a head and burst that night and has never been the same. To his supporters he became a cultural hero. His detractors finally gave him grudging respect. At least they had seen him beaten and seen that smug look wiped off his face.

Unknown Fact:  The fight provided cover for an activist group, the Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI, to successfully pull off a burglary at an FBI office in Pennsylvania, which exposed the COINTELPRO operations that included illegal spying on activists involved with the civil rights and anti-war movements. One of the COINTELPRO targets was Muhammad Ali, which included the FBI gaining access to his records as far back as elementary school.

Click here to learn how Smokin’ Joe got his nickname.

AND SOME COOL VIDEOS…

  1. Watch this five minute video of Newsday’s remembrance of Muhammed Ali.
  2. Muhammad Ali vs Joe Frazier I: Round 15 (Knockdown.)
  3. Muhammad Ali vs Joe Frazier II
  4. Muhammad Ali vs Joe Frazier III – Oct. 1, 1975 – Entire fight – Rounds 1 – 14 + Interview
  5. The Fight of the Century Explained