Tuesday, July 19, 2011

From the pages of my almanac

On this date:

July 19th, 64 Common Era - Rome - starting in the market district, fire consumes the city. If Nero played his fiddle, it's because he was a very happy Emperor. Huge swaths of the city would need to be reconstructed. He probably owned the land. He probably took, er, taxed top dollar from buidling tradesmen, materials suppliers, etc. And guess who just happened to have a stunning redesign for the city available? And he gets to blame it all on those pesky christians!

July 19, 1692: In Salem, MA, Rebecca Nurse, Susannah Martin, Elizabeth Howe, Sarah Good and Sarah Wildes were hanged at Gallows Hill.

July 19th Birthdays:

Samuel Colt (1814-1862) inventor and industrialist. His patents and company popularized the revolver. As a kid, he was an indentured farm servant, worked for his father's textile plant, was sent to learn a seaman's trade, became a sort of snake oil barker touring the country giving demonstrations of laughing gas. Then, at the age of 18 patented his design for the revolver. Dead at 38, he left an estate of about $15 million - and that in 1862 dollars... Look at this eyes - he was a demon....

Edgar Degas (18
34-1917) - artist who thought his were works of realism. He never married, ended up broke, nearly blind, restlessly wandering the streets of Paris.

Lizzie Borden (1860-1927) - took an axe, and gave her father 40 whacks... hey, if the axe handle don't fit you gots to a-quit. First off, she did her Step-mother first, with 18 or 19 whacks. And her cheap son-of-a bitch father (so cheap he wouldn't spring for indoor plumbing) was second and got only 10 or 11 wacks. With plenty of suspects and evidence hanging around, the jury took one and a half hours to return a verdict of not guilty. Lizzie stayed in Fall River, and had at least one long affair (with actress Nance O'Neil). Well, that little bit of gossip changes things don't it? Little Lizzie was a butch dyke, I just know it. Yeah, she could'a done it.

Harold Egbert Camping (born July 19, 1921) president of Family Radio, which is in about 150 markets in the US. Predicted that the world would end on May 21, 1988. And September 7, 1994. Then May 21, 2011. Next up: Oct. 21st, 2011.


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