What Happened on March 1st – The Salem Witch Hunt

Sarah Good, Sarah Osborne and Tituba

Sarah Good, Sarah Osborne and Tituba

On March 1, 1692, in Salem Village (Now Danvers, Massachusetts) in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, Sarah Goode, Sarah Osborne, and Tituba, an Indian slave from Barbados, are charged with the illegal practice of witchcraft. Later that day, Tituba, possibly under coercion, confessed to the crime, encouraging the authorities to seek out more Salem witches.

Tituba, as portrayed in the 19th century by artist Alfred Fredericks in W. C. Bryant's "A Popular History of the United States"

Tituba, as portrayed in the 19th century by artist Alfred Fredericks in W. C. Bryant’s “A Popular History of the United States”

Trouble in the small Puritan community began the month before, when nine-year-old Elizabeth Parris and 11-year-old Abigail Williams, the daughter and niece, respectively, of the Reverend Samuel Parris, began experiencing fits and other mysterious maladies. A doctor concluded that the children were suffering from the effects of witchcraft, and the young girls corroborated the doctor’s diagnosis. With encouragement from a number of adults in the community, the girls, who were soon joined by other “afflicted” Salem residents, accused a widening circle of local residents of witchcraft, mostly middle-aged women but also several men and even one four-year-old child. During the next few months, the afflicted area residents incriminated more than 150 women and men from Salem Village and the surrounding areas of Satanic practices.

"Witchcraft at Salem Village" likely by F.O.C. Darley, Granville Perkins or William Ludwell Sheppard, ill. Published in "Pioneers in the settlement of America: From Florida in 1510 to California in 1849," by William August Crafts, Vol. 1, p. 453, Boston: Samuel Walker and Co. 1876.

“Witchcraft at Salem Village” likely by F.O.C. Darley, Granville Perkins or William Ludwell Sheppard, ill. Published in “Pioneers in the settlement of America: From Florida in 1510 to California in 1849,” by William August Crafts, Vol. 1, p. 453, Boston: Samuel Walker and Co. 1876.

In June 1692, the special Court of Oyer, “to hear,” and Terminer, “to decide,” convened in Salem under Chief Justice William Stoughton to judge the accused. The first to be tried was Bridget Bishop of Salem, who was found guilty and executed by hanging on June 10.

 

Thirteen more women and four men from all stations of life followed her to the gallows, and one man, Giles Corey, was executed by crushing. Most of those tried were condemned on the basis of the witnesses’ behavior during the actual proceedings, characterized by fits and hallucinations that were argued to be caused by the defendants on trial.

"Trial of Giles Corey" engraving by C. (Charles) S. Reinhardt Date 1878, Source A Popular History of the United States, Vol. II, New York, Scribner's, 1878, p. 459 Author William Cullen Bryant Permission (Reusing this file)  Public Domain

“Trial of Giles Corey” engraving by C. (Charles) S. Reinhardt
Date 1878, Source A Popular History of the United States, Vol. II, New York, Scribner’s, 1878, p. 459
Author William Cullen Bryant
Permission
(Reusing this file)
Public Domain

In October 1692, Governor William Phipps of Massachusetts ordered the Court of Oyer and Terminer dissolved and replaced with the Superior Court of Judicature, which forbade the type of sensational testimony allowed in the earlier trials. Executions ceased, and the Superior Court eventually released all those awaiting trial and pardoned those sentenced to death. The Salem witch trials, which resulted in the executions of 19 innocent women and men, had effectively ended.

That is until the 1950s

"Joseph McCarthy" by United Press - Library of Congress. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Joseph_McCarthy.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Joseph_McCarthy.jpg

“Joseph McCarthy” by United Press – Library of Congress. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Joseph_McCarthy.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Joseph_McCarthy.jpg

The term McCarthyism, coined in 1950 in reference to McCarthy’s practices, was soon applied to similar anti-communist activities. Today the term is used more generally in reference to demagogic, reckless, and unsubstantiated accusations, as well as public attacks on the character or patriotism of political opponents.

See related posts:

Salem Witches Executed

Witch Hunt 20th Century Style

The World’s Outstanding Women (WOW): Joanne Woodward

WOMENS-symbol Throughout history women have made their mark in a wide variety of ways.  Each Saturday I plan to highlight one of these remarkable women.  There will be no limit to the areas of history that I may include; however as a guide I will look to the month of their birth, the month of their death or the month associated with their mark in history when I select them.  Is there an outstanding women in history you would like me to include?  I welcome your suggestions.  Would you like to guest blog one of the world’s outstanding women?  Let me hear from you.  You access all the previous postings of these remarkable women from the menu at the top of my site.

For today’s post, an outstanding woman from the world of entertainment and activism.  Meet Joanne Woodward.

Joanne Woodward 1960

Joanne Woodward 1960

 Sexiness wears thin after a while and beauty fades, but to be married to a man who makes you laugh every day, ah, now that’s a real treat.

— Joanne Woodward

An activist is someone who makes an effort to see problems that are not being addressed and then makes an effort to make their voice heard. Sometimes there are so many things that it’s almost impossible to make your voice heard in every area, but you can sure try.

– Joanne Woodward

 

Early life

  • Born on February 27, 1930 in Thomasville, Georgia,
  • Her parents were Wade Woodward, Jr. and Elinor (née Trimmier).  Her father had been vice president of the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons.
  • Joanne’s middle names, “Gignilliat Trimmier”, are of Huguenot origin (French Protestants.

Elinor Woodward loved the movies and this had a big influence on her daughter.  Joanne was named after the actress Joan Crawford.  Joanne is the Southern pronunciation of the name.   As a child at the age of nine, Joanne attended the premiere of Gone with the Wind in Atlanta.  She rushed into the parade of stars and sat on the lap of Laurence Olivier an actor she would later work with in 1977.  On the set of the television production, Come Back, Little Sheba, Joanne mentioned the incident to Olivier and he remember.

Laurence Olivier and Joanne Woodward during rehearsals for "Come Back, Little Sheba" in 1977.

Laurence Olivier and Joanne Woodward during rehearsals for “Come Back, Little Sheba” in 1977.

In the second grade, the Woodwards relocated to Marietta, Georgia, where Joanne would later attend Marietta High School. She remains a booster of Marietta High and of that city’s Strand Theater. They moved once again when she was a junior in high school, after her parents divorced. She graduated from Greenville High School in 1947, in Greenville, South Carolina. While she was a teenager, Woodward won many beauty contests, appeared in theatrical productions at Greenville High and in Greenville’s Little Theatre.  Woodward majored in drama at Louisiana State University, where she was an initiate of Chi Omega sorority, then headed to New York City to perform on the stage.

LSU Louisiana State University Gumbo College Yearbook 1949 Joanne Woodward ..

LSU Louisiana State University Gumbo College Yearbook 1949 Joanne Woodward ..

Early career

Woodward’s first film was a post-Civil War Western, Count Three and Pray, in 1955.

She continued to move between Hollywood and Broadway, eventually understudying in the New York production of Picnic, which featured Paul Newman. The two were married in 1958 after their work together in the film The Long, Hot Summer. (I love this movie including the television remake with Don Johnson).

Paul_Newman_Joanne_Woodward_Long_Hot_Summer

By that time, Woodward had starred in The Three Faces of Eve (1957), for which she won the 1957 Academy Award for Best Actress.

oanne Woodward arrived at the 1958 Oscars in a homemade gown of emerald green satin. Woodward was so convinced that her rival Deborah Kerr would win

Joanne Woodward arrived at the 1958 Oscars in a homemade gown of emerald green satin. Woodward was so convinced that her rival Deborah Kerr would win

Joanne Woodward appeared in ten films with her husband, Paul Newman and five others that he directed.  You can read all about her filmography here and here.

 

Personal life

Joanne Woodward met actor Paul Newman in 1953. They later reconnected on the set of The Long Hot Summer in 1957 and married on February 2, 1958, in Las Vegas. It was an exciting year for Joanne Woodward as not only did she marry the man she would be with until death parted them, on March 28 she won the Academy Award for Best Actress. The couple were married for 50 years before Paul Newman’s death from lung cancer on September 26, 2008.

Joann and Paul had three daughters: Elinor Teresa (1959), known on screen as Nell Potts and generally as Nell Newman, Melissa “Lissy” Stewart (1961), and Claire “Clea” Olivia Newman (1965). They also have two grandsons, by Lissy.

In 1990, Woodward graduated from Sarah Lawrence College with her daughter Clea. Newman delivered the commencement address, during which he said he dreamed that a woman had asked,

“How dare you accept this invitation to give the commencement address when you are merely hanging on to the coattails of the accomplishments of your wife?”

AP Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward at Woodward's 1990 graduation from Sarah Lawrence College at age 60.

AP Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward at Woodward’s 1990 graduation from Sarah Lawrence College at age 60.

In 1988, Newman and Woodward established the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, named for the outlaws in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Located in Ashford, Connecticut, the camp provides services to 20,000 seriously ill children and families free of charge.

The Hole In The Wall Gang Camp

The Hole In The Wall Gang Camp

 

 

Woodward continues to live in Westport, Connecticut.

What Happened on February 27th – Mardi Gras Comes to New Orleans

Mardi Gras 2015

Mardi Gras 2015

On February 27, 1827, a group of masked and costumed students dance through the streets of New Orleans, Louisiana, marking the beginning of the city’s famous Mardi Gras celebrations.

Known as the celebration of Carnival throughout the world, it is the weeks between Twelfth Night on January 6 and Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the Christian period of Lent.  I always thought of it as an event that came from Latin America but it spread from Rome across Europe and later to the Americas.

Pieter Bruegel the Elder: The Fight Between Carnival and Lent (detail), 1559

Pieter Bruegel the Elder: The Fight Between Carnival and Lent (detail), 1559

There is no bigger Mardi Gras celebration in the United States then the one in New Orleans.  Over-the-top parades and parties for Mardi Gras (or Fat Tuesday), the last day of the Carnival season is a big part of what the city is known for.

Comus Parade New Orleans 1858

Comus Parade New Orleans 1858

Brought to Louisiana at the end of the 17th century by early French settlers, Spanish governors of the province later banned the Mardi Gras celebrations.   In 1803 when Louisiana joined the United States, the people of New Orleans managed to convince the city council to lift the ban on wearing masks and partying in the streets. The city’s new Mardi Gras tradition began in 1827 when the group of students, inspired by their experiences studying in Paris, donned masks and jester costumes and staged their own Fat Tuesday festivities.

Bernard Marigny Date Original not dated; c. 1800s - 1810s Source 19th century portrait, as reprinted in "Mandeville, A Historical Compendium" (New Orleans, 1918)

Bernard Marigny
Date Original not dated; c. 1800s – 1810s
Source 19th century portrait, as reprinted in “Mandeville, A Historical Compendium” (New Orleans, 1918)

The parties grew more and more popular, and in 1833 a rich plantation owner named Bernard Xavier de Marigny de Mandeville raised money to fund an official Mardi Gras celebration. After rowdy revelers began to get violent during the 1850s, a secret society called the Mistick Krewe of Comus staged the first large-scale, well-organized Mardi Gras parade in 1857. Over time, hundreds of krewes formed, building elaborate and colorful floats for parades held over the two weeks leading up to Fat Tuesday.

Mardi-Gras, 1873. "Ye Mystick Krewe of Comus." [New Orleans]

Mardi-Gras, 1873. “Ye Mystick Krewe of Comus.” [New Orleans]

In February 2006, New Orleans held its Mardi Gras celebrations despite the fact that Hurricane Katrina had devastated much of the city with massive flooding the previous August. Attendance was at only 60-70 percent of the 300,000-400,000 visitors who usually attend Mardi Gras, but the celebration marked an important step in the recovery of the city, which counts on hospitality and tourism as its single largest industry.  Here is a link to a report about New Orleans Mardi Gras 18 months after Katrina

Read my multi-part series on Hurricane Katrina starting here.

This Week in World War II – USS Langley (CV-1) Is Sunk

Murderers Row US Aircraft Carriers of Task Force 58THIS WEEK IN WORLD WAR II

USS LANGLEY (CV-1) IS SUNK

Do you know about the annual blogging event, Blogging from A to Z April Challenge.  I participated for the first time last year and plan on joining in again this year.  This year my theme will be World War II so I hope you visit my blog in April when I bring you World War II from A to Z.  You will be able to access the posts from a page dedicated to the challenge and also revisit my posts from the 2014 challenge.

On February 27, 1942, the U.S. Navy’s first aircraft carrier, the Langley, is sunk by Japanese warplanes (with a little help from U.S. destroyers), and all of its 32 aircraft are lost.

"USS Langley 43-1193M" by Department of Defense. Department of the Navy. Naval Photographic Center. - General Records of the Department of the Navy, 1798-1947 ( http://narademo.umiacs.umd.edu/cgi-bin/isadg/viewobject.pl?object=59528 ). Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:USS_Langley_43-1193M.jpg#mediaviewer/File:USS_Langley_43-1193M.jpg

“USS Langley 43-1193M” by Department of Defense. Department of the Navy. Naval Photographic Center. – General Records of the Department of the Navy, 1798-1947 ( http://narademo.umiacs.umd.edu/cgi-bin/isadg/viewobject.pl?object=59528 ). Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:USS_Langley_43-1193M.jpg#mediaviewer/File:USS_Langley_43-1193M.jpg

The Langley was launched in 1912 as the naval collier (coal transport ship) Jupiter.

"Jupiter. Collier 3. Starboard bow, 10-16-1913 - NARA - 512992" by Unknown or not provided - U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Jupiter._Collier_3._Starboard_bow,_10-16-1913_-_NARA_-_512992.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Jupiter._Collier_3._Starboard_bow,_10-16-1913_-_NARA_-_512992.jpg

“Jupiter. Collier 3. Starboard bow, 10-16-1913 – NARA – 512992″ by Unknown or not provided – U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Jupiter._Collier_3._Starboard_bow,_10-16-1913_-_NARA_-_512992.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Jupiter._Collier_3._Starboard_bow,_10-16-1913_-_NARA_-_512992.jpg

After World War I, the Jupiter was converted into the Navy’s first aircraft carrier and rechristened the Langley, after aviation pioneer Samuel Pierpoint Langley. It was also the Navy’s first electrically propelled ship, capable of speeds of 15 knots.

 

On October 17, 1922, Lt. Virgil C. Griffin piloted the first plane, a VE-7-SF, launched from the Langley‘s decks.

Although planes had taken off from ships before, it was nevertheless a historic moment. After 1937, the Langley lost the forward 40 percent of her flight deck as part of a conversion to seaplane tender, a mobile base for squadrons of patrol bombers.

October 17, 1922: a Vought VE-7SF piloted by Lt. Virgil C. Griffin of VF-1 Squadron, makes the first take-off of a United States Aircraft Carrier

October 17, 1922: a Vought VE-7SF piloted by Lt. Virgil C. Griffin of VF-1 Squadron, makes the first take-off of a United States Aircraft Carrier

On December 8, 1941, the Langley was part of the Asiatic Fleet in the Philippines when the Japanese attacked. She immediately set sail for Australia, arriving on New Year’s Day, 1942. On February 22, commanded by Robert P. McConnell, the Langley, carrying 32 Warhawk fighters, left as part of a convoy to aid the Allies in their battle against the Japanese in the Dutch East Indies.

First flown in 1938 the single-seat P-40 Warhawk was available in large numbers when World War II started, making it one of the most important fighters

First flown in 1938 the single-seat P-40 Warhawk was available in large numbers when World War II started, making it one of the most important fighters

On February 27, the Langley parted company from the convoy and headed straight for the port at Tjilatjap, Java. About 74 miles south of Java, the carrier met up with two U.S. escort destroyers when nine Japanese twin-engine bombers attacked.

aerialdefense4

Although the Langley had requested a fighter escort from Java for cover, none could be spared. The first two Japanese bomber runs missed their target, as they were flying too high, but the Langley‘s luck ran out the third time around and it was hit three times, setting the planes on her flight deck aflame. The carrier began to list. Commander McConnell lost his ability to navigate the ship. McConnell ordered the Langley abandoned, and the escort destroyers were able to take his crew to safety. Of the 300 crewmen, only 16 were lost. The destroyers then sank the Langley before the Japanese were able to capture it.

"AV-3 near miss 27Feb42 NAN5-81" by USN - U.S. Navy Naval Aviation News May 1981 [1]; USN photo available at the National Museum of Naval Aviation, photo 1998.409.075 [2]. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:AV-3_near_miss_27Feb42_NAN5-81.jpg#mediaviewer/File:AV-3_near_miss_27Feb42_NAN5-81.jpg

“AV-3 near miss 27Feb42 NAN5-81″ by USN – U.S. Navy Naval Aviation News May 1981 [1]; USN photo available at the National Museum of Naval Aviation, photo 1998.409.075 [2]. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:AV-3_near_miss_27Feb42_NAN5-81.jpg#mediaviewer/File:AV-3_near_miss_27Feb42_NAN5-81.jpg

Falling Through Time #shortstories

Falling Through Time

by Maryann Holloway

Twitter: @ma_holloway

Word Count: 1485

Things are not always as they seem. For Michael Adler and his family, this was never as true as it was last summer. The story I am about to tell is true but you will find it hard to believe. I’ve known Michael my whole life and when he told me what happened, I too was skeptical.

It all began when Michael’s daughter was researching interesting things to do during the family vacation in Wyoming. Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons was going to be the family trip of a lifetime.

Shana happened upon a website about a dinosaur museum in Thermopolis, Wyoming. Thermopolis, known for its hot springs, was about a two hour drive east from the Yellowstone area and the museum offered a dig for the day activity. The Adler family could join paleontologists and other scientists on a dig cite in the mountains. Digging for dinosaurs sounded like a spectacular addition to the vacation itinerary.

A few weeks after school ended, Michael and his family stepped off the plane in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and soon were on their way to Thermopolis. After the two hour car ride, it was nice to finally reach their hotel, enjoy the swimming pool and have dinner. They decided to make it an early night since the next day was their dig.

The following morning after having breakfast at the hotel and dressing for a day in the rugged outdoors, the Adler’s arrived at the Wyoming Dinosaur Center ready for their dinosaur dig. They met their guide, Geology PhD student, Josh Beecher. He and the Adler’s gathered the necessary equipment and loaded up the truck.

After fifteen minutes, they arrived at the dig site. There were several other scientists and university students milling around. After parking the truck, Josh brought Michael and his family over to meet the crew.

“Gather around everyone. We have a family digging with us today and based on the conversation we had on the way up here, they are excited about helping us. Please meet Michael Adler, his wife Christa and their daughter Shana.”

Everyone made the family feel welcome as they headed back to their assignments. That is everyone except one man. Dressed in ragged khakis, a drab olive pocket t-shirt, work boots and a panama hat, the man came close in order to speak to Josh. He was speaking in low tones but Michael overheard most of what was said.

“Why have you brought them here today? You know it is risky.”

“Dr. Inkler you know that the activities offered by the museum are what keeps our dig cite open. Without the benevolence of the public, the time between government grants is very lean around here and that means cutbacks on your work.”

“We just opened for the season. I don’t want a repeat of what happened last year. These people are in the way. Keep them away from my area. I mean it.”

Josh wanted to say something but thought better of it. An angry Dr. Inkler made everyone miserable. Turning away from Dr. Inkler’s retreating figure, Josh caught the look on Michael’s face and knew they had been overheard.

“I am sorry you had to hear that. Dr. Inkler is fanatical about the work we do here but he doesn’t have very good people skills. I hope you won’t let his attitude upset you.”

“Don’t worry. We have his sort in my line of work too. I think we are too excited about this experience to let him bother us,” said Michael.

Josh turned to Shana. “Are you ready to get started?”

“So ready!”

Handing each of them a chisel and brush, Josh lead them to an excavated area nearby. The sun was beginning to blaze overhead as everyone started digging and brushing debris. It was hot and thirsty work but Shana was learning so much from Josh. He showed her how to preserve the small bone fragments she was finding. After a few hours, it was time to take a break.DSC_0024

“I want to show you what a group of us have been uncovering nearby. It is a very exciting find. You’ll want your cameras. Afterwards we’ll break for lunch.”

They followed Josh to an area about fifty yards away. Six students were standing around a large whole in the ground; however when Michael and his family approached, the students stepped back to reveal a well-established dig cite. Shana couldn’t believe what she was seeing. She had only seen completely assembled dinosaurs in museums before and to see a six foot bone in the ground was beyond her wildest dreams. Everyone took several photographs.

Source: Maryann Holloway.  Dinosaur bone being excavated at the Wyoming Dinosaur Center, Thermopolis, Wyoming.  Photo by a member of the Holloway family

Source: Maryann Holloway. Dinosaur bone being excavated at the Wyoming Dinosaur Center, Thermopolis, Wyoming. Photo by a member of the Holloway family

After breaking for lunch, the work continued. As the sun was getting lower in the sky, Michael stood up to stretch. Realizing that his canteen was empty, he walked over to the truck to refill it from the cooler. He could hear voices raised in anger as he approached.

“Everyone else has gone and that family should go too. I’ve been feeling low rumbling all day. I’m going to camp here overnight; but you should get in the truck and get them out of here before it is too late,” demanded Dr. Inkler.

“You’re exaggerating as usual. Dr. Hamilton feels we don’t need to be concerned. You’ve been very paranoid lately Doctor,” said Josh.

“It’s not paranoia. It is knowledge,” said Dr. Inkler.

Josh noticed Michael near the truck and approached.

“What was that he said about feeling low rumbling? I felt it too.”

“Nothing to worry about Michael. Did you and your family enjoy the dig today? It is time to head back to the museum now.”

Michael went back to Christa and Shana. After packing up the equipment, everyone climbed into the truck. Josh started the engine and began to drive onto the mountain path. Suddenly the front passenger side tire dropped into a ditch and there was a loud cracking noise. Trying not to panic, Josh had everyone get out and move away from the truck. The tire was flat but worse, it looked like the front axle was broken.

“No worries. I’ll get on the radio and someone from the museum will bring up another truck for us.” Turning on the radio, all Josh heard was static. He tried various channels with the same results.

“I can’t reach anyone but when we don’t return, they’ll send someone.” What Josh didn’t know because he had been with the Adler’s all day was that everyone was going out for drinks to celebrate a 21st birthday. There was no one who will know they had not returned.

“Let’s walk up to the site to tell Dr. Inkler.”

As was expected, Dr. Inkler was not happy to see Josh and his guests walking into the clearing. After Josh explained what happened, Dr. Inkler sighed in frustration.

“The signs are all present. I have no doubts. There will be a fall through time tonight.”

“What is he talking about Dad,” asked Shana. Christa and Shana both looked at Michael. Michael turned to Josh and the Doctor and demanded an explanation.

“What do you mean a fall through time?”

“We have to tell them Doctor.”

Dr. Inkler dropped his chin and shook his head. “They’re not ready for it.”

Before Josh could begin to explain, there was a loud roar and the earth shook. Next the sky turned pitch black.

“Everyone do exactly what I tell you. Move quickly and get behind that large rock and stay absolutely still.”

Josh and the doctor hurried the group to the large rock and everyone hunkered down. The earth continued to shake and the roar became louder. Shana looked up from where she was sitting and if it had not been for Josh clamping his hand over her mouth, she would have let out a blood curdling scream. Towering twenty feet above them with massive teeth was the most infamous of them all, the Tyrannosaurus Rex. Not ancient bones buried more than 65 million years but an animal alive walking the earth.

Flicker.com Authorized for reuse

Flicker.com Authorized for reuse

The dinosaur moved away from the area and at least for the time being, the humans were safe.

“How could there be dinosaurs in the twenty-first century?” asked Michael.

“We don’t know how they are here and why it is just some nights. It started happening when the university first started to dig up on this mountain. We’ve learned to read the signs and usually clear everyone to safety,” said Josh.

“It only happens at night?” asked Christa.

“Yes. If no one comes for us tonight, our job will be to hide and survive until morning,” said Josh.

“You’re responsible for them Josh. I’m going to my camp,” complained Dr. Inkler. Dr. Inkler left the group and as it turned out, that was the last time anyone heard or saw him. You’re able to read this story today because Josh, Michael and his family survived to tell it.

What Happened on February 24th – Somewhere Over the Rainbow #WizardOfOz

The Wizard of Oz: Haley, Bolger, Garland and Lahr

The Wizard of Oz: Haley, Bolger, Garland and Lahr

On February 24, 1938, the entertainment trade newspaper Variety reported that the film studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) had bought the rights to adapt L. Frank Baum’s beloved children’s novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz for the screen, and that the studio has cast 16-year-old Judy Garland in the film’s central role, Dorothy Gale. the role would make her a star.

Production of The Wizard of Oz was beset by challenges from the beginning. 

  • The script went through numerous rewrites, 
  • The film went through four directors (Richard Thorpe, George Cukor, Victor Fleming and King Visor)
  • Casting problems: Buddy Ebsen as the Tinman suffered a near-fatal allergic reaction to the aluminum dust used in his Tinman makeup. Jack Haley replaced him.
  • The all-important role of the Wicked Witch of the West was also recast, as the original actress, Gale Sondergaard, objected to playing such an ugly, evil character; Margaret Hamilton replaced her.

The Wizard of Oz emerged from these challenges as one of history’s most enduring and best-loved films, ranking sixth on the American Film Institute’s list of the 100 greatest films of all time (compiled in 1999). The Wizard of Oz was especially honored for its pioneering use of the film process known as Technicolor, as well as for its now-iconic soundtrack.  “Over Rainbow” would become Judy Garland’s signature song.

In 2015, Comcast has asked us to re-imagine the Wizard Oz through a visually impaired child. A truly wonderful world of oz for everyone.

Sunday Photo Fiction – Because I Can and Want to Dream #poetry

Submitted for Sunday Photo Fiction

spfThe Assignment: The idea of Photo Fiction is to write a story of around 100-200 words (which is also called Flash Fiction) based on a photo as a prompt. In this particular photo fiction, the story must be based on the photo above.

This week, I thought I’d try my hand at a form of poetry called a ballade. A ballade is a type of poetry, this type of poetry first became popular in the 14th century. A Ballade poem should have three stanzas and an envoy/ envoi. The rhyming pattern for the stanzas is ababbcbC. The rhyming pattern for the envoy is bcbC. The capital letter in the rhyming patterns shows where the refrain should be.

Credit: Joe Owens 2015

Credit: Joe Owens 2015

I Can and Want to Dream

The clouds fill the sky like smoke

Hiding the sun in nature’s canvas

The flora and the fauna add their stroke

I stand here thinking why I’m anxious

What’s my purpose in this madness

Where do I fit in this scheme

What in life can lead to gladness

Because I can and want to dream.

 

I wondered what tomorrow would provoke

Drudge, boredom and general drabness

Will the rain come and give a soak

I stand here pondering so near darkness

What’s my purpose in this blandness

Where do I fit on this team

What in life can end this sadness

Because I can and want to dream.

 

Remembering now the last time we spoke

The world didn’t end, still turns on its axis

But your words to me were a cruel joke

I stand here blind in this blackness

What’s my purpose in this badness

Don’t expect tears and I won’t scream

What in life can provide happiness

Because I can and want to dream.

 

I know now that you are callous

Not a nice person and not what you seem

Life continues without your cruelness

Because I can and want to dream.

What Happened on February 22nd – The Tet Offensive Ends

The American war effort in Vietnam was hit hard by the North Vietnamese Tet Offensive, which ended on this day in 1968.

1968 Tet Offensive

Force KIA WIA MIA CIA
US Forces 1,536 7,764 11 unknown
ARVN 2,788 8,299 587 unknown
NVA/VC 45,000 unknown unknown 6,991

Source for chart: http://www.rjsmith.com/kia_tbl.html

Legend for Chart:

ARVN – The Army of the Republic of Viet Nam or South Vietnam Army (SVA)

NVA/VC – North Viet Nam People’s Army or Viet Cong

KIA – Killed in Action

WIA – Wounded in Action

MIA – Missing in Action

CIA – Captured in Action

First a little background information:

The Tet Offensive was one of the largest military campaigns of the Vietnam War, launched on January 30, 1968 by forces of the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese People’s Army of Vietnam against the forces of South Vietnam, the United States, and their allies. It was a campaign of surprise attacks against military and civilian commands and control centers throughout South Vietnam. The name of the offensive comes from the Tết holiday, the Vietnamese New Year, when the first major attacks took place.

Who could ever forget this famous photograph. Execution of a Viet Cong Guerrilla 1968. With North Vietnam's Tet Offensive

Who could ever forget this famous photograph.
Execution of a Viet Cong Guerrilla 1968. With North Vietnam’s Tet Offensive

The North Vietnamese Army launched a wave of attacks in the late night hours of 30 January in the I and II Corps Tactical Zones of South Vietnam. This early attack did not lead to widespread defensive measures. When the main North Vietnamese operation began the next morning the offensive was countrywide and well coordinated, eventually more than 80,000 North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops striking more than 100 towns and cities, including 36 of 44 provincial capitals, five of the six autonomous cities, 72 of 245 district towns, and the southern capital.  The offensive was the largest military operation conducted by either side up to that point in the war.

Label on the shrouded remains of a Tet Offensive victim describing teeth, color of hair, foot wear, and other possessions found with the body.

Label on the shrouded remains of a Tet Offensive victim describing teeth, color of hair, foot wear, and other possessions found with the body.

The initial attacks stunned the US and South Vietnamese armies and caused them to temporarily lose control of several cities, but they quickly regrouped to beat back the attacks, inflicting massive casualties on North Vietnamese forces. During the Battle of Huế, intense fighting lasted for a month resulting in the destruction of the city by US forces. During their occupation, the North Vietnamese executed thousands of people in the Massacre at Huế. Around the US combat base at Khe Sanh fighting continued for two more months. Although the offensive was a military defeat for the North Vietnamese, it had a profound effect on the US government and shocked the US public, which had been led to believe by its political and military leaders that the NVA were, due to previous defeats, incapable of launching such a massive effort.

 

Claims by President Lyndon Johnson that the offensive was a complete failure were misleading. Though the North Vietnamese death toll was 20 times that of its enemies, strongholds previously thought impenetrable had been shaken. The prospect of increasing American forces added substantial strength to the anti-war movement and led to Johnson’s announcement that he would not seek re-election.

The Tet Offensive brought on increased protests of the war. 5th May 1971:  Democratic Party representative Ron Dellums addresses an anti Vietnam war demonstration on the steps of the US Capitol building in Washington DC.  (Photo by Dave Watt/Keystone/Getty Images)

The Tet Offensive brought on increased protests of the war.
5th May 1971: Democratic Party representative Ron Dellums addresses an anti Vietnam war demonstration on the steps of the US Capitol building in Washington DC. (Photo by Dave Watt/Keystone/Getty Images)

The World’s Outstanding Women (WOW): Erma Bombeck

WOMENS-symbolThroughout history women have made their mark in a wide variety of ways.  Each Saturday I plan to highlight one of these remarkable women.  There will be no limit to the areas of history that I may include; however as a guide I will look to the month of their birth, the month of their death or the month associated with their mark in history when I select them.  Is there an outstanding women in history you would like me to include?  I welcome your suggestions.  Would you like to guest blog one of the world’s outstanding women?  Let me hear from you.

Today an outstanding woman humorist, syndicated columnist and writer.  Meet Erma Bombeck.

 

Erma Bombeck

Erma Bombeck

 

People shop for a bathing suit with more care than they do a husband or wife. The rules are the same. Look for something you’ll feel comfortable wearing. Allow for room to grow.

— Erma Bombeck

Note:  There were not too many photographs that I could find online that the usage rights would allow me to use them in this post.  After reading my post, I reccommend visiting the online museum dedicated to Erma Bombeck at http://www.ermamuseum.org/netscape4.asp

Early life

  • Born Erma Fiste on February 21, 1927 in Bellbrook, Ohio.
  • Raised by her working-class family in Dayton, Ohio.
  • Her parents were Erma (née Haines) and Cassius Edwin Fiste, who was the city crane operator.
  • Young Erma lived with her elder paternal half-sister, Thelma.
  • In 1932 she began elementary school one year earlier than usual for her age and was an excellent student and an avid reader.
  • From an eary age, Erma particularly enjoyed the popular humor writers of the time.
  • In 1936, Erma’s father died.  Erma moved with her mother into her grandmother’s home.
  • In 1938 her mother remarried, to Albert Harris, a moving van owner.
  • In her childhood, Erma practiced tap dance and singing, and was hired by a local radio station for a children’s revue for eight years.

Education and onward

  • In 1940, Erma entered Emerson Junior High School, and began writing a humorous column for its newspaper, The Owl.
  • In 1942, Bombeck entered Parker (now Patterson) Vocational High School, where she wrote a serious column, mixing in bits of humor.
  • In 1942, she began to work at the Dayton Herald as a copygirl, sharing her full-time assignment with a girlfriend.
  • In 1943, for her first journalistic work, Erma interviewed Shirley Temple, who visited Dayton, and the interview became a newspaper feature.
  • In 1944, Erma completed high school.
  • To earn a college scholarship, she worked for a year as a typist and stenographer, for the Dayton Herald and several other companies, and did minor journalistic assignments (obituaries, etc.) for the Dayton Herald as well.
  • Using the money she earned, Erma enrolled in Ohio University at Athens, Ohio, in 1946.
  • Erma failed most of her literary assignments and was rejected for the university newspaper. She left after one semester, when her funds ran out.
  • Erma later enrolled in the University of Dayton, a Catholic college.
  • She lived in her family home and worked at Rike’s Store, a department store, where she wrote humorous material for the company newsletter.
  • In addition, she worked two part-time jobs – as a termite control accountant at an advertising agency and as a public relations person at the local YMCA.
  • While in college, her English professor, Bro. Tom Price, commented to Erma about her great prospects as a writer, and she began to write for the university student publication, The Exponent.
  • In 1949, Erma graduated with a degree in English
  • She became a lifelong active contact for the University — helping financially and participating personally — and became a lifetime trustee of the institution in 1987.
  • In 1949, she converted to Catholicism, from the United Brethren church, and married Bill Bombeck, a former fellow student of the University of Dayton, who was a veteran. His subsequent profession would be that of educator and school supervisor. Bombeck remained active in the church the rest of her life.

Housewife (1954–1964)

Erma Bombeck

Erma Bombeck

Erma and Bill were told by doctors that having a child was improbable, so they adopted a girl, Betsy, in 1953. At this time, Erma decided to become a full-time housewife.  Nonetheless, during 1954, Erma wrote a series of humorous columns in the Dayton Shopping News.  Apparently the doctors were incorrect because Erma gave birth to a son, Andrew, in 1955 and another, Matthew in 1958. The Bombeck family moved to Centerville, Ohio, into a tract housing development, and were neighbors to the young Phil Donahue.

Erma, Bill, Betsy, Matt and Andy Bombeck, 1958.

Erma, Bill, Betsy, Matt and Andy Bombeck, 1958.

“At Wit’s End” (1965)

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In 1964 Erma Bombeck resumed her writing career for the local Kettering-Oakwood Times, earning $3 each for a weekly column. In 1965 the Dayton Journal Herald requested new humorous columns as well, and Bombeck agreed to write two weekly 450-word columns for $50. After three weeks, the articles went into national syndication through the Newsday Newspaper Syndicate, into 36 major U.S. newspapers, with three weekly columns under the title “At Wit’s End”.

Bombeck quickly became a popular humorist nationwide. Beginning in 1966, she began doing lectures in the various cities where her columns appeared. In 1967, her newspaper columns were compiled and published by Doubleday, under the title of At Wit’s End. And after a humorous appearance on Arthur Godfrey’s radio show, she became a regular radio guest on the show.

Aaron Priest, a Doubleday representative, became Bombeck’s loyal agent. By 1969, 500 U.S. newspapers featured her “At Wit’s End” columns, and she was also writing for Good Housekeeping Magazine, Reader’s Digest, Family Circle, Redbook, McCall’s, and even Teen magazine. Bombeck and her family moved to Phoenix, Arizona, to a lavish hacienda on a hilltop in Paradise Valley.

By 1978, 900 U.S. newspapers were publishing Bombeck’s column.

McGraw-Hill (1976)

In 1976 McGraw-Hill published Bombeck’s The Grass Is Always Greener over the Septic Tank, which became a best-seller. In 1978, Bombeck arranged both a million-dollar contract for her fifth book, If Life Is a Bowl of Cherries, What Am I Doing in the Pits? and a 700-thousand-copy advance for her subsequent book, Aunt Erma’s Cope Book (1979).

Television

At the invitation of television producer Bob Shanks, Bombeck participated in ABC’s Good Morning America from 1975 until 1986. She began doing brief commentaries which were recorded at Phoenix, and eventually did both gag segments and important interviews.

For several years, Bombeck was occupied with multiple writing and TV projects. In 1978, she failed with the television pilot of The Grass is Always Greener on CBS. In 1980, then Bombeck wrote and produced her own show, the also unsuccessful Maggie, for ABC. It aired for just four months (eight episodes) to poor reviews; nevertheless the show meant that Bombeck was becoming quickly overworked, returning from Los Angeles to Phoenix only during weekends. Bombeck was offered a second sitcom attempt but she declined.

Equal Rights Amendment (1978)

In 1978 Bombeck was involved in the Presidential Advisory Committee for Women, particularly for the final implementation of the Equal Rights Amendment, with the ERA America organization’s support. Bombeck was strongly criticized for this by conservative figures, and some U.S. stores reacted by removing her books. (Things never change)

In 1972 the Equal Rights Amendment was proposed by the United States Congress to the states. Congress specified a seven-year period for ratification. Under Article V of the United States Constitution, ratification by at least three-fourths of the states is necessary, but at the end of the seven-year period, only 35 states had ratified, or three less than the required three-fourths. Bombeck expressed dismay over this development.

Great popularity (1980s)

By 1985 Erma Bombeck’s three weekly columns were being published by 900 newspapers in the United States and Canada, and were also being anthologized into a series of best-selling books. She was also making twice-weekly Good Morning America appearances. Bombeck belonged to the American Academy of Humor Columnists, along with other famous personalities. During the 1980s, Bombeck’s annual earnings ranged from $500,000 to $1 million a year. She was the grand marshal for the 97th Tournament of Roses Parade held on January 1, 1986. The parade theme was “A Celebration of Laughter.”

Death

Erma Bombeck was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease (an incurable, untreatable genetic disease) when she was 20 years old. She survived breast cancer and mastectomy, and kept secret the fact that she had kidney disease, enduring daily dialysis. She went public with her condition in 1993. On a waiting list for transplant for years, one kidney had to be removed, and the remaining one ceased to function. On April 3, 1996, she received a kidney transplant. Erma Bombeck died on April 22, 1996, aged 69, from complications of the operation. Her remains are interred in the Woodland Cemetery, Dayton, Ohio, under a large rock from the Phoenix desert.

Erma Bombeck was buried at the Woodland Cemetery under a 29,000 pound unmarked boulder from the Arizona desert.

Erma Bombeck was buried at the Woodland Cemetery under a 29,000 pound unmarked boulder from the Arizona desert.

Books

  • At Wit’s End, Doubleday, 1967.
  • Just Wait Until You Have Children of Your Own, Doubleday, 1971. Written with Bil Keane.
  • I Lost Everything in the Post-Natal Depression, Doubleday, 1974.
  • The Grass is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank, McGraw-Hill, 1976.
  • If Life is a Bowl of Cherries, What Am I Doing in the Pits?, McGraw-Hill, 1978.
  • Aunt Erma’s Cope Book, McGraw-Hill, 1979.
  • Motherhood: The Second Oldest Profession, 1983.
  • Family — The Ties that Bind … and Gag!, 1987.
  • I Want to Grow Hair, I Want to Grow Up, I Want to Go to Boise: Children Surviving Cancer, 1989. American Cancer Society’s Medal of Honor in 1990. (Profits from the publication of this book were donated to a group of health-related organizations.)
  • When You Look Like Your Passport Photo, It’s Time to Go Home, 1991.
  • A Marriage Made in Heaven … or Too Tired For an Affair, 1993
  • All I Know About Animal Behavior I learned in Loehmann’s Dressing Room, ISBN 0060177888 HarperCollins 1995
  • Forever, Erma: Best-Loved Writing From America’s Favorite Humorist, Andrew McMeel Publishing, 1996

This Week in World War II – Battle of Iwo Jima

Raising the flag on Iwo Jima 1945THIS WEEK IN WORLD WAR II

BATTLE OF IWO JIMA

Do you know about the annual blogging event, Blogging from A to Z April Challenge.  I participated for the first time last year and plan on joining in again this year.  This year my theme will be World War II so I hope you visit my blog in April when I bring you World War II from A to Z.  You will be able to access the posts from a page dedicated to the challenge and also revisit my posts from the 2014 challenge.

This post is an excerpt from a previous posting on my other site, USS Hornet (CV-12) – A Father’s Untold War Story

On 19 February 1945 U.S. Marines stormed ashore on Iwo Jima, a small volcanic island half way between the Mariana Islands and Japan. These landings opened more than a month of extremely bloody ground fighting between three Marine divisions and more than 20,000 Japanese defenders.

iwo_jima_landing

The Iwo Jima invasion began on 16 February 1945, when a formidable U.S. Navy armada started three days of pre-landing preparations. As minesweepers and underwater demolition teams cleared the nearby waters, warships and aircraft methodically tried to destroy the island’s defenses. However, given the abundance of well-concealed strong points and deeply buried underground facilities, this was not nearly enough.

The black sands of Iwo Jima with Mt. Suribachi in background. February 1945.

Thus, when the Marines landed, they confronted intense opposing fire from the landing area and from flanking positions on Mount Suribachi in the south and the rugged terrain of northern Iwo Jima. Securing Mount Suribachi and the rest of southern Iwo Jima required more than four days of intense combat. Another week’s bloodshed brought the Marines into the middle of the desperately defended north, where the bitter fight to eliminate organized Japanese resistance took nearly four additional weeks.

Raising the flag on Iwo Jima 1945

For the U.S. Marines, Iwo Jima was the most difficult of World War II’s many tough fights. It remains an enduring demonstration of the essential role of infantry when ground must be captured, even when seemingly overwhelming air and sea power is present. The abundant heroism of the attackers was recognized by the award of no fewer than twenty-seven Medals of Honor, more than half given posthumously.

Medal of Honor. (twenty-two) were awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for gallantry at Iwo than for any other World War II battle. (A total of eighty-one Marines were thus decorated for the entire war.)

In American hands, Iwo Jima soon became an important base for the air campaign that ended with Japan’s August 1945 capitulation, thus justifying the blood spilled to take it. Had the war continued, its role would have been even more critical.