Posts Tagged ‘Alan B Shepard

05
May
09

On This Day, May 5, Alan B Shepard

May 5, 1961

The first American in space

From Cape Canaveral, Florida, Navy Commander Alan Bartlett Shepard Jr. is launched into space aboard the Freedom 7 space capsule, becoming the first American astronaut to travel into space. The suborbital flight, which lasted 15 minutes and reached a height of 116 miles into the atmosphere, was a major triumph for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

NASA was established in 1958 to keep U.S. space efforts abreast of recent Soviet achievements, such as the launching of the world’s first artificial satellite–Sputnik 1–in 1957. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, the two superpowers raced to become the first country to put a man in space and return him to Earth. On April 12, 1961, the Soviet space program won the race when cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin was launched into space, put in orbit around the planet, and safely returned to Earth. One month later, Shepard’s suborbital flight restored faith in the U.S. space program.

NASA continued to trail the Soviets closely until the late 1960s and the successes of the Apollo lunar program. In July 1969, the Americans took a giant leap forward with Apollo 11, a three-stage spacecraft that took U.S. astronauts to the surface of the moon and returned them to Earth. On February 5, 1971, Alan Shepard, the first American in space, became the fifth astronaut to walk on the moon as part of the Apollo 14 lunar landing mission.

“The first American in space,” The History Channel website, 2009, http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=4977 [accessed May 5, 2009]

On This Day

1494 – Christopher Columbus sighted Jamaica on his second trip to the Western Hemisphere. He named the island Santa Gloria.

1798 – U.S. Secretary of War William McHenry ordered that the USS Constitution be made ready for sea. The frigate was launched on October 21, 1797, but had never been put to sea.

1814 – The British attack the American forces at Ft. Ontario, Oswego, NY.

1821 – Napoleon Bonaparte died on the island of St. Helena, where he had been in exile.

1862 – The Battle of Puebla took place. It is celebrated as Cinco de Mayo Day.

1865 – The Thirteenth Amendment was ratified, abolishing slavery in the U.S.

1901 – The first Catholic mass for night workers was held at the Church of St. Andrew in New York City.

1917 – Eugene Jacques Bullard becomes the first African-American aviator when he earned his flying certificate with the French Air Service.

1925 – John T. Scopes, a biology teacher in Dayton, TN, was arrested for teaching Darwin’s theory of evolution.

1942 – General Joseph Stilwell learned that the Japanese had cut his railway out of China and was forced to lead his troops into India.

1945 – The Netherlands and Denmark were liberated from Nazi control.

1955 – The Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) became a sovereign state.

1981 – Irish Republican Army hunger-striker Bobby Sands died at the Maze Prison in Northern Ireland. It was his 66th day without food.

May 5, 1945

Six killed in Oregon by Japanese bomb

In Lakeview, Oregon, Mrs. Elsie Mitchell and five neighborhood children are killed while attempting to drag a Japanese balloon out the woods. Unbeknownst to Mitchell and the children, the balloon was armed, and it exploded soon after they began tampering with it. They were the first and only known American civilians to be killed in the continental United States during World War II. The U.S. government eventually gave $5,000 in compensation to Mitchell’s husband, and $3,000 each to the families of Edward Engen, Sherman Shoemaker, Jay Gifford, and Richard and Ethel Patzke, the five slain children.

The explosive balloon found at Lakeview was a product of one of only a handful of Japanese attacks against the continental United States, which were conducted early in the war by Japanese submarines and later by high-altitude balloons carrying explosives or incendiaries. In comparison, three years earlier, on April 18, 1942, the first squadron of U.S. bombers dropped bombs on the Japanese cities of Tokyo, Kobe, and Nagoyo, surprising the Japanese military command, who believed their home islands to be out of reach of Allied air attacks. When the war ended on August 14, 1945, some 160,000 tons of conventional explosives and two atomic bombs had been dropped on Japan by the United States. Approximately 500,000 Japanese civilians were killed as a result of these bombing attacks.

“Six killed in Oregon by Japanese bomb,” The History Channel website, 2009, http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=4976 [accessed May 5, 2009]

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06
Feb
08

On This Day 2-6-08 Ronald Reagan

1778 – The United States gained official recognition from France as the two nations signed the Treaty of Amity and Commerce and the Treaty of Alliance in Paris.

1788 – Massachusetts became the sixth state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.

1899 – The U.S. Senate ratified a peace treaty between the U.S. and Spain.

1900 – The Holland Senate ratified the 1899 peace conference decree that created in international arbitration court at The Hague.

1926 – The National Football League adopted a rule that made players ineligible for competition until their college class graduated.

1959 – The U.S., for the first time, successfully test-fired a Titan intercontinental ballistic missile from Cape Canaveral.

1971 – NASA Astronaut Alan B. Shepard used a six-iron that he had brought inside his spacecraft and swung at three golf balls on the surface of the moon.

1987 – President Ronald Reagan turned 76 years old this day and became the oldest U.S. President in history.

1998 – Washington National Airport was renamed for U.S. Ronald Reagan with the signing of a bill by U.S. President Clinton.

Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today’s world do not have.
Ronald Reagan

Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.
Ronald Reagan

Government’s first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives.
Ronald Reagan

I don’t remember.

Ronald Reagan

31
Jan
08

On This Day 1-31-08: The Thirteenth Amendment

1606 – Guy Fawkes was executed after being convicted for his role in the “Gunpowder Plot” against the English Parliament and King James I.

1865 – In America, General Robert E. Lee was named general-in-chief of the Confederate armies.

1865 – The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified by the U.S. Congress. It was ratified on December 6, 1865. The amendment abolished slavery in the United States.

1876 – All Native American Indians were ordered to move into reservations.

1917 – Germany announced its policy of unrestricted submarine warfare.

1929 – The USSR exiled Leon Trotsky. He found asylum in Mexico.

1940 – The first Social Security check was issued by the U.S. Government.

1944 – During World War II, U.S. forces invaded Kwajalein Atoll and other areas of the Japanese-held Marshall Islands.

1945 – Private Eddie Slovik became the only U.S. soldier since the U.S. Civil War to be executed for desertion.

1946 – A new constitution in Yugoslavia created six constituent republics (Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia) subordinated to a central authority, on the model of the USSR.

1950 – U.S. President Truman announced that he had ordered development of the hydrogen bomb.

1971 – Astronauts Alan B. Shepard Jr., Edgar D. Mitchell and Stuart A. Roosa blasted off aboard Apollo 14 on a mission to the moon.

1985 – The final Jeep rolled off the assembly line at the AMC plant in Toledo, OH.

From being a patriotic myth, the Russian people have become an awful reality.
Leon Trotsky

I like whiskey. I always did, and that is why I never drink it.
Robert E. Lee

13th. Amendment
to the U.S. Constitution


Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

Section 2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.




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