Archive for May, 2008

30
May
08

If a Tree Falls in the Woods: Final Part

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These pictures show some tornado damage to a forest along the Wisconsin River.

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019

30
May
08

If a Tree Falls in the Woods: Part II

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Does it make a sound?  The answer is you don’t know because no one is there to hear it.

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However, when a tornado strikes in the woods…

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30
May
08

If a Tree Falls in the Woods: Part I

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If a tree falls in the woods and no one is there to here it.  Does it make a sound?

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27
May
08

Wisconsin Deer

Muley

Mule Deer crossing a field.

River Deer

White-tailed Deer at the edge of the Wisconsin River.

River Deer IV

27
May
08

On This Day, 5-27-08: Bismarck

Bismarck sunk by Royal Navy

On May 27, 1941, the British navy sinks the German battleship Bismarck in the North Atlantic near France. The German death toll was more than 2,000.

On February 14, 1939, the 823-foot Bismarck was launched at Hamburg. Nazi leader Adolf Hitler hoped that the state-of-the-art battleship would herald the rebirth of the German surface battle fleet. However, after the outbreak of war, Britain closely guarded ocean routes from Germany to the Atlantic Ocean, and only U-boats moved freely through the war zone.

In May 1941, the order was given for the Bismarck to break out into the Atlantic. Once in the safety of the open ocean, the battleship would be almost impossible to track down, all the while wreaking havoc on Allied convoys to Britain. Learning of its movement, Britain sent almost the entire British Home Fleet in pursuit. On May 24, the British battle cruiser Hood and battleship Prince of Wales intercepted it near Iceland. In a ferocious battle, the Hood exploded and sank, and all but three of the 1,421 crewmen were killed. The Bismarck escaped, but because it was leaking fuel it fled for occupied France. On May 26, it was sighted and crippled by British aircraft, and on May 27 three British warships descended on the Bismarck and finished it off.

“Bismarck sunk by Royal Navy.” 2008. The History Channel website. 26 May 2008, 01:07 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=5040.

1647 – Achsah Young, a resident of Windsor, CT, was executed for being a “witch.” It was the first recorded American execution of a “witch.”

1668 – Three colonists were expelled from Massachusetts for being Baptists.

1896 – 255 people were killed in St. Louis, MO, when a tornado struck.

1960 – A military coup overthrew the democratic government of Turkey.

1969 – Construction of Walt Disney World began in Florida.

1977 – George H. Willig was fined for scaling the World Trade Center in New York on May 26. He was fined $1.10.

1994 – Nobel Prize-winning author Alexander Solzhenitsyn returned to Russia. He had been in exile for two decades.

1999 – In The Hague, Netherlands, a war crimes tribunal indicted Slobodan Milosevic and four others for atrocities in Kosovo. It was the first time that a sitting head of state had been charged with such a crime.

 

Ex parte Merryman issued

On this day, Chief Justice Roger B. Taney issues ex parte Merryman, challenging the authority of Abraham Lincoln and the military to suspend the writ of habeas corpus in Maryland.

Early in the war, President Lincoln faced many difficulties due to the fact that Washington was located in slave territory. Although Maryland did not secede, Southern sympathies were widespread. On April 27, 1861, Lincoln suspended the writ of habeas corpus between Washington and Philadelphia to give military authorities the necessary power to silence dissenters and rebels. Under this order, commanders could arrest and detain individuals who were deemed threatening to military operations. Those arrested could be held without indictment or arraignment.

On May 25, John Merryman, a vocal secessionist, was arrested in Cockeysville, Maryland. He was held at Ft. McHenry in Baltimore, where he appealed for his release under a writ of habeas corpus. The federal circuit court judge was Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, who issued a ruling, ex parte Merryman, denying the president’s authority to suspend habeas corpus. A Marylander himself, Taney shrilly denounced the heavy hand played by Lincoln in interfering with civil liberties and argued that only Congress had the power to suspend the writ.

Lincoln did not respond directly to Taney’s edict, but he did address the issue in his message to Congress that July. He justified the suspension through Article I, Section 9, of the Constitution, which specifies a suspension of the writ “when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.”

Although military officials continued to arrest suspected Southern sympathizers, the incident led to a softening of the policy. Concern that Maryland might still secede from the Union forced a more conciliatory stance from Lincoln and the military. Merryman was remanded to civil authorities in July and allowed to post bail. He was never brought to trial, and the charges of treason against him were dropped two years after the war.

Ex parte Merryman issued.” 2008. The History Channel website. 26 May 2008, 01:13 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=2044.

The Battle of Tsushima Strait

During the Russo-Japanese War, the Russian Baltic Fleet is nearly destroyed at the Battle of Tsushima Strait. The decisive defeat, in which only 10 of 45 Russian warships escaped to safety, convinced Russian leaders that further resistance against Japan’s imperial designs for East Asia was hopeless.

“The Battle of Tsushima Strait.” 2008. The History Channel website. 26 May 2008, 01:08 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=5039.

Golden Gate Bridge opens

San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, a stunning technological and artistic achievement, opens to the public after five years of construction. On opening day–“Pedestrian Day”–some 200,000 bridge walkers marveled at the 4,200-foot-long suspension bridge, which spans the Golden Gate Strait at the entrance to San Francisco Bay and connects San Francisco and Marin County. On May 28, the Golden Gate Bridge opened to vehicular traffic.

“Golden Gate Bridge opens.” 2008. The History Channel website. 26 May 2008, 01:09 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=6910.

26
May
08

Sunrise

Sunrise II

Wisconsin River from the boat landing at Lone Rock

26
May
08

On This Day, May 26, 2008: Dunkirk

Britain’s Operation Dynamo gets underway as President Roosevelt makes a radio appeal for the Red Cross

On this day in 1940, American President Franklin D. Roosevelt makes known the dire straits of Belgian and French civilians suffering the fallout of the British-German battle to reach the northern coast of France, and appeals for support for the Red Cross

“Tonight, over the once peaceful roads of Belgium and France, millions are now moving, running from their homes to escape bombs and shells and machine gunning, without shelter, and almost wholly without food,” broadcast FDR.

On May 26, the British Expeditionary Force was evacuated from Dunkirk in France. Ships arrived at Calais to remove the Force before German troops occupied the area, and it was hoped that 45,000 British soldiers could be shipped back to Britain within two days. The German air force, though, had other plans. Determined to prevent the evacuation, the Luftwaffe initiated a bombing campaign in Dunkirk and the surrounding area. British, Polish, and Canadian fighter pilots succeeded in fending off the German attack in the air, allowing finally for a delayed, but successful, evacuation nine days later. But the cost to civilians was great, as thousands of refugees fled for their lives to evade the fallout of the battle.

“Britain’s Operation Dynamo gets underway as President Roosevelt makes a radio appeal for the Red Cross.” 2008. The History Channel website. 25 May 2008, 10:27 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=6422.

0017 – Germanicus of Rome celebrated his victory over the Germans.

1521 – Martin Luther was banned by the Edict of Worms because of his religious beliefs and writings.

1647 – A new law banned Catholic priests from the colony of Massachusetts. The penalty was banishment or death for a second offense.

1736 – The British and Chickasaw Indians defeated the French at the Battle of Ackia.

1791 – The French Assembly forced King Louis XVI to hand over the crown and state assets.

1805 – Napoleon Bonaparte was crowned King of Italy in Milan Cathedral.

1831 – Russians defeated the Poles at battle of Ostrolenska.

1864 – The Territory of Montana was organized.

1868 – U.S. President Andrew Johnson was acquitted, by one vote, of all charges in his impeachment trial.

1896 – The last czar of Russia, Nicholas II, was crowned.

1938 – The House Committee on Un-American Activities began its work of searching for subversives in the United States.

1946 – A patent was filed in the United States for an H-bomb.

1959 – The word “Frisbee” became a registered trademark of Wham-O.

1972 – The Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT I) was signed by the U.S. and USSR. The short-term agreement put a freeze on the testing and deployment of intercontinental and submarine-launched ballistic missiles for a 5-year period.

1977 – George H. Willig was arrested after he scaled the South Tower of New York’s World Trade Center. It took him 3 1/2 hours.

1994 – U.S. President Clinton renewed trade privileges for China, and announced that his administration would no longer link China’s trade status with its human rights record.

Pequot massacres begin

During the Pequot War, an allied Puritan and Mohegan force under English Captain John Mason attacks a Pequot village in Connecticut, burning or massacring some 500 Indian women, men, and children.

As the Puritans of Massachusetts Bay spread further into Connecticut, they came into increasing conflict with the Pequots, a war-like tribe centered on the Thames River in southeastern Connecticut. By the spring of 1637, 13 English colonists and traders had been killed by the Pequot, and Massachusetts Bay Governor John Endecott organized a large military force to punish the Indians. On April 23, 200 Pequot warriors responded defiantly to the colonial mobilization by attacking a Connecticut settlement, killing six men and three women and taking two girls away.

On May 26, 1637, two hours before dawn, the Puritans and their Indian allies marched on the Pequot village at Mystic, slaughtering all but a handful of its inhabitants. On June 5, Captain Mason attacked another Pequot village, this one near present-day Stonington, and again the Indian inhabitants were defeated and massacred. On July 28, a third attack and massacre occurred near present-day Fairfield, and the Pequot War came to an end. Most of the surviving Pequot were sold into slavery, though a handful escaped to join other southern New England tribes.

“Pequot massacres begin.” 2008. The History Channel website. 25 May 2008, 10:26 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=5035.

Colonel William Crawford proceeds toward the Ohio

On this day in 1782, American Colonel William Crawford marches his army towards the Ohio River, where General George Washington has charged him with attacking local Indians who had sided with the British in the American Revolution.

Colonel Crawford, a close friend of General Washington and a veteran of British military encounters with Native Americans in the French and Indian War, Pontiac’s Rebellion and Lord Dunmore’s War, had agreed to come out of retirement in Fayette County, Pennsylvania, to assist his fellow Virginian in the fight for American independence.

The expedition ended in a slow, harrowing death for Crawford. On June 6, his supply chain disintegrated and Wyandot Indians surrounded Crawford and his men. The Indians of the Ohio region were enraged by the recent slaughter of pacifist Christian Indians at the Moravian mission in Gnadenhutten, Pennsylvania. Unfortunately for Crawford, some of the perpetrators of the Gnadenhutten Massacre were among his men.

Patriots had shot the women and children of the Gnadenhutten mission from behind as they knelt in prayer on March 8, 1782. The Wyandots, under Chief Konieschguanokee (Captain Pipe), took their revenge by torturing the members of Crawford’s party. Crawford and his son-in-law William Harrison were scalped and burned at the stake; Crawford finally died after two hours of torment. At least 250 members of Crawford’s party were killed in the disastrous encounter.

Crawford’s horrendous death ensured that he would be remembered as a martyr. The site of his execution is included on the National Register of Historic Places and a monument has been erected there in his memory. Counties in Ohio and Pennsylvania also bear his name.

“Colonel William Crawford proceeds toward the Ohio.” 2008. The History Channel website. 25 May 2008, 10:27 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=634.




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