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Arts & Culture

Almanac - Friday 4/18/20


Raise a glass! It's World Malbec Day!

Today is Friday, April 17, 2020, the 107th day of the year. 65 days until summer, and only 200 days until presidential elections (if civilization survives).  

  • Sunrise: 6:31am           
  • Sunset: 7:48pm ...giving us 13 hours 15min of daylight.  32% of the waning moon will be visible, rising at 4:20am.  

Tides at the Golden Gate                     

  • High: 8:30am/10:09pm               
  • Low: 2:53am/3:00pm

Special celebrations & commemorations today…

  • FAO Day - Iraq
  • Independence Day - Cambodia, Syria
  • Bat Appreciation Day
  • Blah! Blah! Blah! Day
  • Ellis Island Family History Day
  • Ford Mustang Day
  • Herbalist Day
  • International Haiku Poetry Day
  • Malbec World Day
  • National Clean Out Your Medicine Cabinet Day
  • National Crawfish Day
  • National Donate Life (Blue and Green) Day
  • Nothing Like A Dame Day
  • World Hemophilia Day

On this day in…

1492 - Christopher Columbus signed a contract with Spain to find a passage to Asia and the Indies.

1521 - Martin Luther was excommunicated from the Roman Catholic Church.

1524 - New York Harbor was discovered by Giovanni Verrazano.

1535 - Antonio Mendoza was appointed first viceroy of New Spain.

1629 - Horses were first imported into the colonies by the American Massachusetts Bay Colony.

1704 - John Campbell published what would eventually become the first successful American newspaper. It was known as the Boston "News-Letter."

1758 - Frances Williams published a collection of Latin poems. He was the first African-American to graduate from a college in the western hemisphere.

1808 - Bayonne Decree by Napoleon I of France ordered the seizure of U.S. ships.

1860 - New Yorkers learned of a new law that required fire escapes to be provided for tenement houses.

1861 - Virginia became the eighth state to secede from the Union.

1864 - U.S. Civil War General Grant banned the trading of prisoners.

1865 - Mary Surratt was arrested as a conspirator in the Lincoln assassination.

1875 - The game "snooker" was invented by Sir Neville Chamberlain.

1895 - China and Japan signed the Treaty of Shimonoseki. It was the end of the first Sino-Japanese War. In the treaty China ceded Taiwan to Japan.

1916 - The American Academy of Arts and Letters obtained a charter from the U.S. Congress.

1917 - A bill in Congress to establish Daylight Saving Time was defeated. It was passed a couple of months later.

1941 - Igor Sikorsky accomplished the first successful helicopter lift-off from water near Stratford, CT.

1941 - The office of Price Administration was established in the U.S. to handle rationing.

1961 - About 1,400 U.S.-supported Cuban exiles invaded Cuba at the Bay of Pigs in an attempt to overthrow Fidel Castro. It was an unsuccessful attack.

1964 - Jerrie Mock became the first woman to fly an airplane solo around the world.

1964 - The Ford Motor Company unveiled its new Mustang model.

1967 - The U.S. Supreme Court barred Muhammad Ali's request to be blocked from induction into the U.S. Army.

1969 - In Los Angeles, Sirhan Sirhan was convicted of assassinating U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

1970 - Apollo 13 returned to Earth safely after an on-board accident with an oxygen tank.

1975 - Khmer Rouge forces capture the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh. It was the end of the five-year war.

1985 - The U.S. Postal Service unveiled its new 22-cent, "LOVE" stamp.

1993 - A federal jury in Los Angeles convicted two former police officers of violating the civil rights of beaten motorist Rodney King. Two other officers were acquitted.

1996 - Erik and Lyle Menendez were sentenced to life in prison without parole for killing their parents.

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

  • Henry Vaughan 1622 - Author, physician, poet
  • J.P. (John Pierpoint) Morgan 1837 - Financier
  • Thornton Wilder 1897 - Novelist, playwright
  • Gregor Piatigorsky 1903 - Cellist
  • Arthur Lake 1905 - Actor ("Blondie" series)
  • Sirimavo Bandaranaike 1916 - Ceylon Prime Minister, the world's first woman prime minister
  • William Holden (Beedle Jr.) 1918 - Actor 
  • Harry Reasoner 1923 - Newsman ("Sixty Minutes")
  • Don Kirshner 1934 - Music publisher, created The Monkees
  • Olivia Hussey 1951 - Actress ("Ice Cream Man", "Psycho 4: The Beginning")
  • Sean Bean 1958 - Actor ("Goldeneye", "The Lord of the Rings" series)
  • Henry Cusick 1967 - Actor ("Lost") 
  • Jennifer Anne Garner 1972 - Actress ("Daredevil", "Electra", "Alias")
  • Victoria Beckham (Victoria Caroline Adams) 1974 - Singer