Little Bits of History

August 10

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2017

1966: During construction, the Heron Road Bridge collapses. The bridge was being built in Ottawa, Ontario and connected Baseline Road with Heron Road over the Rideau River and the Rideau Canal. John Diefenbaker, Prime Minister of Canada from 1957 to 1963, pushed for a new bridge to ease east-west traffic. Ottawa mayor, Charlotte Whitton, opposed the idea. In 1961 Diefenbaker threatened to reduce federal grants to Ottawa by the cost of the bridge if the city continued to refuse building it. By 1964, an agreement to build was signed by the municipality, province and nation. Initially, it was planned to have two three lane bridges, one for eastbound and one for westbound. It was about 1,000 feet long and budgeted at $2.5 million.

On this day, there were about 70 workers pouring 2,000 tons of concrete on the east side of the southern span of the bridge. The wooden falsework, the framing used in construction work to hold component pieces in place until the structure can sufficiently support itself for advancement, failed at 3.27 PM. The workers fell off the bridge to the ground below, a distance of 50 to 65 feet. The collapse also caused rebar, cement, wood, concrete, and other building materials to drop on top of them. The force of the collapse triggered Dominion Observatory’s seismometer and they issued a statement. There had been no earthquake, but the shock came from the collapse itself.

Some rushed away from the collapse before also being thrown into the mass of debris and some rushed toward the injured to help with rescue efforts. The current major of Ottawa, Don Reid, arrived with bolt cutters. In all, there had been 183 workers at the bridge with nearly one-third of them injured in the collapse. Most of these were taken to Civic Hospital. Since it was change of shift, there was double staff available to take care of the nearly 60 people pouring into the ER. Many of the workers were recent European immigrants and did speak English fluently. They had no identify papers on them and were covered in concrete.

Civic was the closest hospital and yet, both Ottawa General Hospital and National Defence Medical Centre were staffed to receive patients, each only got two admissions. Rescue efforts continued for twelve hours, but it became too dark to use rescue machinery. Only nine people died including the project’s resident engineer and the site foreman. Investigation into the reasons for the collapse found that the falsework was not properly built and lacked enough diagonal bracing. Green wood had been used and it was weaker than seasoned wood and collapsed under the weight of the poured cement. The bridge was finished a year later and in 2016 the name was changed to the Heron Road Workers Memorial Bridge in order to honor those killed in this accident.

Clearly, then, the city is not a concrete jungle, it is a human zoo. – Desmond Morris

Each material has its specific characteristics which we must understand if we want to use it. This is no less true of steel and concrete. – Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

I’ve begun to look at the world through apocalypse eyes. Our society, which seems so sturdily built out of concrete and custom, is just a temporary resting place, a hotel our civilization checked into a couple hundred years ago and must one day check out of. – Neil Strauss

Architecture has its place in the concrete world. This is where it exists. This is where it makes its statement. – Peter Zumthor

 

 

I Will

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2015
Yuri Malenchenko

Yuri Malenchenko

August 10, 2003: Yuri Malenchenko and Ekaterina Dmitrieva marry. The marriage took place while Ekaterina was in Texas and Yuri was 240 miles above New Zealand on the International Space Station (ISS). Yuri was the first person to marry while in space. He was born in Khrushchev, Ukraine (then USSR) on December 22, 1961. He served as a military pilot from 1983 until 1987 when he was chosen to enter the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center. After graduating, he trained as commander of the reserve crew or backup commander for three different Mir voyages. His maiden trip to space came on July 1, 1994 when he and Talgat Musabayev lifted off aboard the Soyuz TM-19 spacecraft with Malenchenko in command. They docked with Mir two days later. The men became the 16th resident Mir crew with Malenchenko in command. They remained in space until November 4.

Malenchenko also lifted off from Kennedy Space Center aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis on September 8, 2000. He was a mission specialist and again after two days, the Shuttle connected – this time with the ISS. The mission was to bring supplies to the ISS and prepare for the first resident crew’s arrival. The mission lasted for twelve days and a week of that time was spent inside the ISS.

His next trip into space began with lift off of the Soyuz TMA-2 spacecraft from Baikonur Cosmodrome on April 26, 2003. They arrived at the ISS on April 28 and Malenchenko served as Soyuz commander. After docking they exchanged crew and became the seventh station crew with the mission as Expedition 7. The Space Shuttle fleet was not flying due to the Columbia disaster and so the crew was reduced to just two, Malenchenko and Ed Lu from NASA. It was the third spaceflight for both men. They performed 15 experiments while in space as well as routine maintenance on the ISS. Supplies were delivered in June and in August. On this day, a wedding ceremony was held. The space trip lasted for a while longer with the return to Earth on October 28.

Malenchenko  and Lu had worked together prior to this flight when they were together on STS-106. While on that mission they both went for space walks. While Malenchenko and Lu were up in the ISS, the Chinese were able to successfully launch the Long March rocket carrying the Shenzhou 5 spacecraft and Chinese astronaut Yang Liwei. Mike Fossum gave the news to the two men in space. Malenchenko went up on Expedition 16 and accumulated another 192 days in space. In total, he has 641 days, 11 hours, and 11 minutes in space with 30 hours and 7 minutes of that time spent in actual space. He and his wife have one child.

It’s really some exciting news to share. The world’s spacefaring nations have been joined by a new member tonight: China. – Mike Fossum

First off, we want to congratulate them. The more people that go into space, the better off we all are. This is a great achievement and good for everyone in the long run. – Ed Lu

Welcome to space. Have a safe journey. – Ed Lu (in Chinese)

I would also like to say I love to have somebody else in space instead of me and Ed. I also know this is great for thousands and thousands of people from China. I congratulate all of them. – Yuri Malenchenko

Also on this day: Smile, You’re on Candid Camera – In 1948, Candid Camera came to television.
Swedish Navy – In 1628, the Vasa sunk on her maiden voyage.
James Smithson – In 1846, the Smithsonian Institution was chartered.
Scat! – In 1755, the Expulsion of the Acadians began.
The Louvre – In 1793, the museum opened.

The Louvre

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2014
The Louvre

The Louvre

August 10, 1793: The Louvre officially opens. The Louvre Palace was the fortress of Philip II of the 12th century and parts of the original building are still visible. It is not known whether or not this was the first building erected here. The origins of the name are also under debate. Throughout the Middle Ages, the Palace was upgraded, changed, and converted. Charles V converted the building into a residence and Francis I not only renovated it, but also acquired what would become the nucleus of the Louvre’s holdings. It was he who brought Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa to France. Louis XIV moved his residence to Versailles in 1682 and at the Palace, construction slowed and artists began to use it as a residence.

During the mid-1700s there were a number of proposals to create a public gallery and a call to display the royal collection. On October 14, 1750, Louis XV agreed to display 96 pieces. They were available for viewing on Wednesdays and Saturdays until the collection closed in 1780. The next Louis made the royal museum a policy and the collection expanded. In May 1791, during the French Revolution, the Louvre was transformed into a public museum and it was declared it would bring together monuments of the sciences and arts. One year before this date, King Louis XVI was imprisoned and the royal collection became national property.

On the one year anniversary of the monarchy’s demise, the museum officially opened. The public was given free access three days a week. At the time, the collection contained 537 paintings and 184 art objects. Three quarters of the collection came from the royal collections while the remainder came from confiscated items from French Huguenots who were forced to flee and from Church property. In order to further expand the pieces available, the Republic dedicated 100,000 livres per year. The beginning years were chaotic with paintings unlabeled and hanging without rhyme or reason. The building itself had to be closed in May 1796 due to structural issues and reopened on July 14, 1801.

Today, the Musee du Louvre contains more than 380,000 objects and displays 35,000 of them in eight curatorial departments. There are more than 652,000 square feet of space. There are more than 15,000 people visiting each day and of them, 65% are foreign tourists. The Louvre is owned by the French government. Since 2003, the museum has been required to raise funds for projects. The government still pays operating costs but the rest (new wings, upgrades, and acquisitions) is up to the museum to finance. There is a staff of 2,000 working there headed by Director Jean-Luc Martinez. There are also two satellite museums.

Keep good company – that is, go to the Louvre. – Paul Cezanne

The Louvre is a morgue; you go there to identify your friends. – Jean Cocteau

I’ve been fifty thousand times to the Louvre. I have copied everything in drawing, trying to understand. – Alberto Giacometti

I remember being a student, and I would go every Friday to the Louvre and stay for ages, just walking around. – Jemima West

Also on this day: Smile, You’re on Candid Camera – In 1948, Candid Camera comes to television.
Swedish Navy – In 1628, the Vasa sunk on her maiden voyage.
James Smithson – In 1946, the Smithsonian Institution is chartered.
Scat! – In 1755, the Expulsion of the Acadians began.

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Swedish Navy

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2013
Vasa  hull cross section

Vasa hull cross section

August 10, 1628: The Swedish Royal Warship Vasa begins her maiden voyage. The ship was commissioned by King Gustavus Adolphus. He was the founder of the Swedish Empire. He is sometimes credited with being the father of modern warfare. He was innovative as a tactician and brilliant, not only in the field, but also in training his men. His soldiers were cross trained for battle readiness. His musketeers were not only accurate shots but could reload their muskets three times faster than contemporary opponents.

The navy also played a great role turning Sweden from a small outpost nation to the third largest in Europe. The Vasa was laid down in 1626. The 230 foot ship displaced ≈ 1,200 tonnes. The hull was completed in 1627. The ship specifications were mandated by the king, who needed to upgrade his Navy. The ship pitched and rolled due to its configuration. To check the stability, a test was ordered. Men ran back and forth across the deck. The ship rolled so violently, the test was halted lest she capsize. The last link allows YOU to try to load the Vasa in such a way she won’t sink.

The ship was built with two gun decks and a total of 64 guns were aboard. There were four different types with most of them (48) being 24-pounders. She was crewed by 145 sailors and 300 soldiers. Captain Söfring Hansson set sail on a calm summer day. They left Stockholm with the guns set out to fire a salute. The wind filled the 13,720 square feet of sail. The Vasa was hit by a gust of wind and heeled hard to port. The sails were dropped and she righted herself. A second gust hit and she again rolled to port with water coming through the gun ports. She sank less than one nautical mile into her maiden voyage. Many nearby fishing boats rescued most of the men, but still 30-50 men were lost.

Within days, an attempt was made to raise the ship. The seabed was only 100 feet down and she sunk 390 feet from shore. The attempt only succeeded in securing the doomed ship even more firmly in the mud and ooze. Thirty years later using primitive diving bells, 50 of the guns were salvaged. The wreck was rediscovered in the early 1950s and a plan was devised to bring her up. Using modern recovery methods she was raised and finally broke water again on April 24, 1961, 333 years after she had sunk.

“Next to God the welfare of the nation depends on its navy” – King Gustavas Adolphus

“We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch – we are going back from whence we came.” – John F. Kennedy

“The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears or the sea.” – Isak Dinesen

“Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.” – Publilius Syrus

This article first appeared at examiner.com in 2009. Editor’s update: The top heavy construction of the ship doomed her from the start. The King was anxious to have the ship meet his armies on the continent where he was fighting. His minions back home did not have the courage to discuss the obvious shortcomings of the ship. Although the Privy Council looked for the person to blame for the fiasco, no one was found that filled the bill. During the raising of the ship, the remains of 15 people were located in or near the wreckage. There were many archeological finds as well including clothing, weapons, tools, coins, and everyday living items such as cutlery, food, and drink. Six of the ten sails were also found. The preserved artifacts allowed a great look at the way people lived in the seventeenth century as well as warfare techniques of the time. The elegantly decorated ship was built to glorify the King. It was one of the largest and most heavily armed ships of its time.

Also on this day: Smile, You’re on Candid Camera – In 1948, Candid Camera comes to television.
James Smithson – In 1946, the Smithsonian Institution is chartered.
Scat! – In 1755, the Expulsion of the Acadians began.

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Scat!

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2012

Expulsion of the Acadians

August 10, 1755: The Expulsion of the Acadians begins. This event is also called the Great Upheaval, the Great Expulsion, The Deportation, the Acadian Expulsion, or Le Grand Derangement. During the French and Indian War, the British forcibly evicted or deported about 11,500 Acadians. These were French settlers and their descendents who moved to what are today the Canadian provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island. Also included were parts of Quebec and the state of Maine. These early settlers predated the British Conquest of Acadia by about 80 years and arrived in the 1630s.

After the 1710 conquest by the British, the Treaty of Utrecht allowed Acadians to keep their land. Over the next 45 years, they resolutely refused to sign an unconditional oath of allegiance to Britain. In fact, some Acadians participated in militia attacks against the British. They also kept vital supply lines open to the French fortresses of Louisbourg and Fort Beausejour during the series of conflicts known collectively as the French and Indian Wars, the fourth and last of these occurring from 1754-1763.

The Bay of Fundy Campaign was fought in 1755. After the Battle of Beausejour, the expulsion of the troublesome French loyalists began. The British had been threatening to remove the Acadians since 1720, so the move wasn’t a complete surprise. And in 1745, after the first siege of Louisbourg, thousands of Acadians were deported to France.

At first, Acadians were sent south to the British colonies along the North American seaboard. After 1758 and until the end of the war, they were sent to France. The British deported people regardless of whether or not they had taken hostile actions against the crown. Peaceful citizens and rebels were all sent away. Many of those sent to France, returned to the New World and located in what is today Louisiana, then a colony of Spain. Because of their common religion, the settlers were able to get along with the Spanish there. Soon, the Acadians became the largest ethnic group in Louisiana and today we know them as Cajuns.

I want people to know… the difference between Creole and Acadian cooking. As you can tell, I am passionate about the Louisiana that I love. I guess you could say I am restoring and preserving the past and sharing the future. – Emeril Lagasse

No prince has ever begun his reign by so glorious a war and so generous a peace. – Lord Egremont to King George III of Great Britain

It is truly a miserable thing that we no sooner leave fighting our neighbors, the French, but we must fall to quarreling among ourselves. – Reverend Samuel Johnson

Fathers, both you and the English are white, we live in a Country between; therefore the Land belongs to neither one nor to other; But the Great Being Above allow’d it to be a Place of Residence for us; so Fathers, I desire you to withdraw, as I have done our Brothers the English; for I will keep you at Arms length. I lay this down as a Trial for both, to see which will have the greatest Regard to it, and that Side we will stand by, and make equal Sharers with us. – Seneca chief Tanaghrisson to the commander of a French fort in the Ohio Valley

Also on this day:

Smile, You’re on Candid Camera – In 1948, Candid Camera comes to television.
Swedish Navy – In 1628, the Vasa sunk on her maiden voyage.
James Smithson – In 1946, the Smithsonian Institution is chartered.

James Smithson

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2011

The Smithsonian Institution

August 10, 1846: The Smithsonian Institution is chartered by the United States Congress. James Smithson was a British scientist who died in 1826. He left his estate to his nephew with the stipulation that should the nephew die without children, the estate would be given to the US in order to build the Smithsonian Institution. The nephew did remain childless and died in 1835.

No one really knows why Smithson made this bequest. He never visited the US and no correspondence to scientists in the US has been discovered. It is thought that he wished his memorial museums to be housed in a country that did not shun him, an illegitimate child. Smithson was not initially even permitted to use his father’s name. Smithson (nee Jacques Louis Macie) published 27 papers on chemistry, geology, and mineralogy. He traveled across Europe and was friendly with many scientists of the day.

Andrew Jackson received 100 gold sovereigns in 1838, as bequeathed on July, 1, 1836. These were eventually turned into US currency and equaled $500,000 (over $9 million after inflation if donated today). Eight years and much debate later the Smithsonian Institution was established under James K. Polk. It was to be governed by a board of regents and the Secretary of the Smithsonian.

The Smithsonian is a mixture of public and private enterprise. The main museum is in Washington, DC and it is surrounded by satellite museums along the National Mall. There are also museums in New York, Virginia, and Washington State. There are a total of 22 museums as well as 12 research centers that are associated with some of the museums. There are over 6,000 employees, two-thirds of them federal government workers while the rest are private sector staff. The budget for year ending 2006 was over $615 million with more than $524 million going to salaries.

“The estate should go ‘to the United States of America, to found at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.'” – from James Smithson’s last will and testament

“We’re a part of the Smithsonian, the national museum of the United States. We need to be taken seriously. At the core of it, we’re an educational entity.” – Richard Burgess

“What we are trying to do is make a statement — If you can’t come to the Smithsonian in Washington, we will come to you.” – Larry Small

“The mission of the Smithsonian is to increase the diffusion of knowledge, not the diffusion of junk food.” – Gary Ruskin

Also on this day:
Smile, You’re on Candid Camera – In 1948, Candid Camera comes to television.
Swedish Navy – In 1628, the Vasa sunk on her maiden voyage.

James Smithson

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2010

The Smithsonian Institution

August 10, 1846: The Smithsonian Institution is chartered by the United States Congress. James Smithson was a British scientist who died in 1826. He left his estate to his nephew with the stipulation that should the nephew die without children, the estate would be given to the US in order to build the Smithsonian Institution. The nephew did remain childless and died in 1835.

No one really knows why Smithson made this bequest. He never visited the US and no correspondence to scientists in the US has been discovered. It is thought that he wished his memorial museums to be housed in a country that did not shun him, an illegitimate child. Smithson was not initially even permitted to use his father’s name. Smithson (nee Jacques Louis Macie) published 27 papers on chemistry, geology, and mineralogy. He traveled across Europe and was friendly with many scientists of the day.

Andrew Jackson received 100 gold sovereigns in 1838, as bequeathed on July, 1, 1836. These were eventually turned into US currency and equaled $500,000 (over $9 million after inflation if donated today). Eight years and much debate later the Smithsonian Institution was established under James K. Polk. It was to be governed by a board of regents and the Secretary of the Smithsonian.

The Smithsonian is a mixture of public and private enterprise. The main museum is in Washington, DC and it is surrounded by satellite museums along the National Mall. There are also museums in New York, Virginia, and Washington State. There are a total of 22 museums as well as 12 research centers that are associated with some of the museums. There are over 6,000 employees, two-thirds of them federal government workers while the rest are private sector staff. The budget for year ending 2006 was over $615 million with more than $524 million going to salaries.

“The estate should go ‘to the United States of America, to found at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.'” – from James Smithson’s last will and testament

“We’re a part of the Smithsonian, the national museum of the United States. We need to be taken seriously. At the core of it, we’re an educational entity.” – Richard Burgess

“What we are trying to do is make a statement — If you can’t come to the Smithsonian in Washington, we will come to you.” – Larry Small

“The mission of the Smithsonian is to increase the diffusion of knowledge, not the diffusion of junk food.” – Gary Ruskin

Also on this day, in 1628 the Vasa, a Swedish warship, sank within one nautical mile of leaving the dock.
Bonus link: In 1948, Candid Camera premiered.

Smile, You’re on Candid Camera

Posted in History by patriciahysell on August 10, 2010

Early reality television: Allen Funt and Candid Camera

August 10, 1948: Candid Camera premieres on ABC with Allen Funt hosting a visual version of his Candid Microphone radio show. The premise of the show was catching people acting just like humans. Unusual situations were set up and the unwary passersby would be filmed reacting to them. When the prank was revealed, the catch phrase, “Smile, you’re on Candid Camera” would bring a groan, a squeal, or laughter from the participant.

The show traveled across the US setting traps for normal citizens, but even celebrities were not beyond being set-up as the object of a prank. Woody Allen got his start writing for the show. Many other celebrities performed in some of the set-ups and the show was successful enough to travel across the ocean. A British version started in 1960 and ran until 1967.

Allen Funt’s legacy continued after his death at age 84 in 1999. His son, Peter, carried on the tradition and today there are plenty of people with cameras setting up unusual situations and filming unwary people. Of course, before anything is shown in a public venue, permission must be granted.

This first reality show has not been without problems. Candid Camera was sued by a man who got stuck in a fake x-ray machine that was set up in an airport. He got stuck while being “scanned” and suffered scratches and bruises. Regardless of a few setbacks and increased competition, Peter Funt continues to broadcast, traveling America for footage and taping shows out of Hollywood, California.

“That of all days is the most completely wasted in which one did not once laugh.” – Chamfort

“To make other people laugh is no great feat so long as one does not mind whether they are laughing at our wit or at us ourselves.” – Georg Christoph Lichtenber

“A good laugh is sunshine in a house.” – William Makepeace Thackeray

“The only thing which provokes laughter is another’s distress.” – George Bernard Shaw

Also on this day, in 1628 the Vasa, a Swedish warship, sank within one nautical mile of leaving the dock.
Bonus link: In 1846, the Smithsonian Institution
was chartered.