Revolutionary War began ….

The American Revolutionary War began this date in 1775 with armed conflicts in Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts between Great Britain and thirteen of its North American Colonies that after the onset of the war declared independence as the United States of America.

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The war represented the culmination of increasing philosophical and political differences between Great Britain and its American colonies. The war represented the culmination of these differences in armed conflict between Patriots and the royal authority against which they increasingly resisted. This resistance became particularly widespread in the New England Colonies. Patriot protests escalated into boycotts and on December 16, 1773, Massachusetts members of the Patriot group Sons of Liberty destroyed a shipment of tea in Boston Harbor in an event that became known as the Boston Tea Party. The British government retaliated by closing the port of Boston and enacting punitive measures against Massachusetts, including the dissolution of its charter and the prohibition of its traditional, democratic town meetings.

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The Massachusetts colonists established a shadow government that removed control of the province from the Crown outside of Boston. Twelve colonies formed a Continental Congress to coordinate their resistance, and established committees and conventions that effectively seized power. On July 2, 1776, Congress formally voted for independence, issuing its Declaration on July 4th.

France and Spain had been covertly providing the colonists with weapons, ammunition, and other supplies since April 1776, and France formally entered the war in 1778, signing a military alliance that recognized the independence of the United States. Giving up on the North, the British decided to salvage its former colonies in the South. British forces under Charles Cornwallis seized Georgia and South Carolina, capturing an American army at Charleston, South Carolina. The strategy depended upon an uprising of large numbers of armed Loyalists, but too few came forward. In 1779, Spain joined the war as an ally of France, intending to capture Gibraltar and British colonies in the Caribbean. Britain declared war on the Dutch Republic in 1780.

In 1781, after suffering two decisive defeats, Cornwallis retreated to Virginia, intending on evacuation. A decisive French naval victory in September deprived the British of an escape route. A joint Franco-American force laid siege to the British forces at Yorktown. With no sign of relief and the situation untenable, Cornwallis surrendered in October, and some 8,000 soldiers were taken prisoner.

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Whigs in Britain had long opposed the pro-war Tory majority in Parliament, and the defeat at Yorktown gave the Whigs the upper hand. In early 1782, they voted to end all offensive operations in North America, but the war against France and Spain continued for another year where Britain won decisive defeats over both the following year. Britain agreed to recognize the sovereignty of the United States over the territory bounded roughly by what is now Canada to the north, Florida to the south, and the Mississippi River to the west. While French involvement proved decisive for the cause of American independence, they made only minor territorial gains and were beset with massive financial debts. Spain acquired Britain’s Florida colonies and the island of Minorca, but failed in its primary aim of recovering Gibraltar. The Dutch lost on all counts and were compelled to cede some territory to the British. (from Wikipedia)

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San Francisco earthquake hits

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The great San Francisco earthquake occurred this date in 1906. It struck the coast of northern California at 5:12 AM with an estimated magnitude of 7.8. Three thousand people died and over 80% of the city was destroyed. The events are remembered as one of the worst and deadliest natural disasters in the history of the United States.

According to findings published in the Journal of Geophysical Research, severe deformations in the earth’s crust took place both before and after the earthquake’s impact. Accumulated strain on the faults in the system was relieved during the earthquake, which is the supposed cause of the damage along the 450-kilometer-long segment of the San Andreas plate boundary. The main shock epicenter occurred offshore about two miles from the city. Shaking was felt from Oregon to Los Angeles, and inland as far as central Nevada.  (from Wikipedia)

Titanic sinks….

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The Titanic hit an iceberg in the northern Atlantic Ocean and sank this date in 1912 when over 1522 passengers and crew died. Although called “unsinkable” and “the safest ship afloat” by her builder and designer, the Titanic sank on her maiden voyage from England to New York City at 11:40 PM. Two hours later, with a gaping gash in her side, the ship quickly sank in icy waters.

Almost unknown is that the Titanic had a sister ship, the Olympic. The ships were constructed around the same time, with the Olympic starting first and launched in 1910. She served as a cruise liner until pressed into service during World Water I as a troop carrier and was retired in 1935. (from WIkipidia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Abraham Lincoln assassinated

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Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States, was assassinated this date on Good Friday, April 14, 1865, while attending a play at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C., as the American Civil War was drawing to a close. The assassination occurred five days after the commander of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia, General Robert E. Lee, surrendered to Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant and the Union Army of the Potomac.

Lincoln was the third American president to die in office and the first to be murdered. The assassination of Lincoln was planned and carried out by the well-known stage actor John Wilkes Booth, as part of a larger conspiracy in a bid to revive the Confederate cause. (from Widipedia)

Scrabble Day

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Scrabble Day celebrates the popular board game on the birthday of its inventor, Alfred Mosher Butts. Scrabble is a word game in which two to four players score points by forming words from individual lettered tiles on a game board marked with a 15×15 grid. The words are formed across and down in crossword fashion and must appear in a standard dictionary.

The game is sold in 121 countries, and there are 29 different language versions. Approximately 150 million sets have been sold worldwide, and sets are found in roughly one-third of American homes. In 1938, American architect Alfred Mosher Butts created the game as a variation on an earlier word game he invented called Lexiko. (from Wikipedia and  www.cute-calendar.com)