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Arts & Culture

Almanac - Wednesday 1/22/20


"Is the caller there? Da?..." Phil Donahue broadcast from the Soviet Union on this day (and for a full week) in 1987.


Today is Wednesday, January 22, 2020.  344 days remain until the end of the year, 57 days until spring begins, and 41 days until the first primaries. 286 days until the 2020 presidential election.

  • Sunrise: 7:21am         
  • Sunset: 5:22pm ...giving us 10 hours of daylight.  10% of the waning crescent moon will be visible, rising at 5:43am.  

Tides at the Golden Gate                  

  • High: 9:12am/11:25pm             
  • Low: 3:00am/4:09pm

Special celebrations & commemorations today…

  • Answer Your Cat's Questions Day
  • Library Shelfie Day
  • Roe vs. Wade Day
  • National Blonde Brownie (‘Blondie’) Day
  • National Hot Sauce Day 
  • Feast of St. Vincent, patron of wine growers and vinegar makers

On this day in…

1666 - Shah Jahan, a descendant of Genghis Khan and Timur, died at the age of 74. He was the Mongul emperor of India that built the Taj Mahal as a mausoleum for his wife Mumtaz-i-Mahal. 

1771 - The Falkland Islands were ceded to Britain by Spain. 

1824 - The Asante army crushed British troops in the Gold Coast. 

1874 - A patent was issued to Samuel W. Francis for the spork. 

1879 - James Shields began a term as a U.S. Senator from Missouri. He had previously served Illinois and Minnesota. He was the first Senator to serve three states. 

1879 - British troops were massacred by the Zulus at Isandhlwana. 

1901 - Queen Victoria of England died after reigning for nearly 64 years. Edward VII, her son, succeeded her. 

1903 - The Hay-Herrán Treaty was signed by United States Secretary of State John M. Hay and Colombian Chargé Dr. Tomás Herrán. The treaty granted the United States rights to the land proposed for the Panama Canal. 

1905 - Insurgent workers were fired on in St Petersburg, Russia, resulting in "Bloody Sunday." 500 people were killed. 

1917 - U.S. President Wilson pleaded for an end to war in Europe, calling for "peace without victory." America entered the war the following April. 

1930 - In New York, excavation began for the Empire State Building. 

1936 - In Paris, Premier Pierre Laval resigned over diplomatic failure in the Ethiopian crisis. 

1944 - Allied forces began landing at Anzio, Italy, during World War II. 

1947 - KTLA, Channel 5, in Hollywood, CA, began operation as the first commercial television station west of the Mississippi River. 

1950 - Alger Hiss, a former adviser to U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt, was convicted of perjury for denying contacts with a Soviet agent. He was sentenced to five years in prison. 

1957 - Suspected "Mad Bomber" was arrested in Waterbury, CT. George P. Metesky was accused of planting more than 30 explosive devices in the New York City area. 

1957 - The Israeli army withdrew from the Sinai. They had invaded Egypt on October 29, 1956. 

1961 - Wilma Rudolph, set a world indoor record in the women’s 60-yard dash. She ran the race in 6.9 seconds. 

1962 - Cuba's membership in the Organization of American States (OAS) was suspended. 

1968 - "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In", debuted on NBC TV. 

1970 - The first regularly scheduled commercial flight of the Boeing 747 began in New York City and ended in London about 6 1/2 hours later. 

1972 - The United Kingdom, the Irish Republic, and Denmark joined the EEC. 

1973 - The U.S. Supreme Court struck down state laws that had been restricting abortions during the first six months of pregnancy. The case (Roe vs. Wade) legalized abortion. 

1983 - Bjorn Borg retired from tennis. He had set a record by winning 5 consecutive Wimbledon championships. 

1984 - Apple introduced the Macintosh during the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII. 

1987 - Phil Donahue became the first talk show host to tape a show from inside the Soviet Union. The shows were shown later in the year. 

1992 - Rebel soldiers seized the national radio station in Kinshasa, Zaire's capital, and broadcast a demand for the government's resignation. 

1995 - Two Palestinian suicide bombers from the Gaza Strip detonated powerful explosives at a military transit point in central Israel, killing 19 Israelis. 

1997 - The U.S. Senate confirmed Madeleine Albright as the first female secretary of state. 

1998 - Theodore Kaczynski pled guilty to federal charges for his role as the Unabomber. He agreed to life in prison without parole. 

2000 - Elian Gonzalez's grandmothers met privately with U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno as they appealed for help in removing the boy from his Florida relatives and reuniting him with his father in Cuba. 

2002 - In Calcutta, India, Heavily armed gunmen attacked the U.S. government cultural center. Five police officers were killed and twenty others, including one pedestrian and one private security guard, were wounded. 

2002 - Lawyers suing Enron Corp. asked a court to prevent further shredding of documents due to the pending federal investigation. 

2002 - AOL Time Warner filed suit against Microsoft in federal court seeking damages for harm done to AOL's Netscape Internet Browser when Microsoft began giving away its competing browser. 

2002 - Marc Chagall's work "Study for 'Over Vitebsk" was found at a postal installation in Topeka, KS. The 8x10 oil painting is valued at about $1 million. The work was stolen a year before from the Jewish Museum in New York City. 

2002 - Kmart Corp. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy making it the largest retailer in history to seek legal protection from its creditors. 

2003 - In New York, the "Leonardo da Vinci, Master Draftsmen" exhibit opened at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. 

2003 - It was reported that scientists in China had found fossilized remains of a dinosaur with four feathered wings. 

If today’s your birthday, you share it with…

  • Sir Francis Bacon 1561
  • Lord (George) Byron 1788 
  • August Strindberg 1849 
  • Beatrice Webb 1858 
  • David (D.W.) Griffith 1875 
  • George Balanchine 1904 - Choreographer 
  • Ann Sothern 1909 - Actress 
  • Piper Laurie 1932 
  • Bill Bixby 1934 
  • Sam Cooke 1931 
  • John Hurt 1940 
  • Steve Perry (Journey) 1949 
  • Teddy Gentry (Alabama) 1952 
  • Chris Lemmon 1954 
  • Linda Blair 1959 
  • Diane Lane 1965 
  • Balthazar Getty 1975