Today Is Charles Dickens Birthday

Charles Dickens’ imagination is unexplainable. Nevertheless, his biography shows the source of that power and is the best place to define it.

Born Charles Dickens on February 7, 1812 to parents John and Elizabeth Dickens, near Portsmouth on England’s south coast. A lower-middle-class family, John dickens was a clerk in the Navy Pay Office in Portsmouth. John having come from servants and Elizabeth from minor bureaucrats. John Dickens was vivacious and generous with a tendency to live beyond his means. Charles based Mr. Micawber and Mrs. Nickleby, in A Tale of Two cities, on his parents.

At a young age Charles was taught to read by his mother and enjoyed reading the classics in his fathers collection, Shakespeare, Cervantes, Defoe, Smollett, Fielding, and Goldsmith. These classics had quite an effect on his imagination. Charles looked at these young years as being a kind of golden age. The Pickwick Papers, his first novel, was an attempt to recreate the innocence and spirit of his youth.

With financial hardship overtaking the Dickens’ family, Charles was taken out of school to do menial household work. His father was imprisoned for debt and released three months later. During this period Charles felt a sense of abandonment that would turn out to be the major themes of his novels. His sympathy for the victimized, his fascination with prisons and money, the desire to vindicate his heroes’ status as gentlemen, and the idea of London as an awesome, lively, and rather threatening environment all reflect these experiences. Out on his own for a time at twelve years of age, Dickens acquired a lasting self-reliance, a driving ambition, and a boundless energy that went into everything he did.

At the age of 20 Charles became a journalist. Over the next 5 years he had the reputation of the fastest and most accurate parliamentary reporter in London.

Passing at 58, June 9, 1870, from a stroke. Charles was the best novelist the Victorian age produced. He was laid to rest in the Poet’s Corner of Westminster Abbey.

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January 21 – Martin Luther King Day


Martin Luther King Day – Happy belated birthday Dr. King


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Click to purchase “Strength to Love [Deluxe Edition] [Paperback]” – 5 star rating

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is a United States federal holiday marking the birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is around the time of Dr. King’s birthday, January 15.

Dr. King was the chief spokesman for nonviolent activism in the civil rights movement, which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law. The campaign for a federal holiday in Dr. King’s honor began soon after his assassination in 1968.

The idea of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day as a holiday was promoted by labor unions in contract negotiations. After Dr. King’s death, United States Representative John Conyers (a Democrat from Michigan) and United States Senator Edward Brooke (a Republican from Massachusetts) introduced a bill in Congress to make Dr. King’s birthday a national holiday. The bill first came to a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1979. However, it fell five votes short of the number needed for passage. Two of the main arguments mentioned by opponents were that a paid holiday for federal employees would be too expensive, and that a holiday to honor a private citizen would be contrary to longstanding tradition (Dr. King had never held public office). Only two other persons have national holidays in the United States honoring them: George Washington and Christopher Columbus.

Soon after, the King Center turned to support from the corporate community and the general public. The success of this strategy was cemented when musician Stevie Wonder released the single “Happy Birthday” to popularize the campaign in 1980 and hosted the “Rally for Peace” Press Conference in 1981. Six million signatures were collected for a petition to Congress to pass the law, termed by a 2006 article in The Nation as “the largest petition in favor of an issue in U.S. history.”

At the White House Rose Garden on November 2, 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed a bill, proposed by Representative Katie Hall of Indiana, creating a federal holiday to honor Dr. King. It was observed for the first time on January 20, 1986. At first, some states resisted observing the holiday as such, giving it alternative names or combining it with other holidays. It was officially observed in all 50 states for the first time in 2000.

The bill established the Martin Luther King, Jr. Federal Holiday Commission to oversee observance of the holiday, and Coretta Scott King, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s wife, was made a member of this commission for life by President George H. W. Bush in May 1989.

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Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (wikipedia.org)

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October 27 – Navy Day

“Navy Day” was originally celebrated on October 27 th, the birth date of President Theodore Roosevelt. President Roosevelt was the former Assistant Secretary of the Navy and a major supporter.

In 1949 “Navy Day” was officially replaced by Armed Forces Day which is celebrated on the 3rd Saturday of May for the U.S.

Even with the replacement of Armed Forces Day the “Navy Day” celebrations continue within the Navy. The Navy League, a civilian organization, chose October 27 to celebrate “Navy Day” and plan events just as before.

“Navy Day” is the day we celebrate and thank our brave men and women of the U.S. Navy for their service and dedication.

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September 21 – International Day of Peace


Today is International Day of Peace

Today is sometimes unofficially known as World Peace Day. It’s dedicated to peace, and specifically the absence of war and violence, such as might be occasioned by a temporary ceasefire in a combat zone for humanitarian aid access. The day was first celebrated in 1982, and is kept by many nations, political groups, military groups, and peoples.

To inaugurate the day, the “Peace Bell” is rung at UN Headquarters (in New York City). The bell is cast from coins donated by children from all continents except Africa, and was a gift from the United Nations Association of Japan, as “a reminder of the human cost of war”; the inscription on its side reads, “Long live absolute world peace”.

Individuals can also wear White Peace Doves to commemorate the International Day of Peace, which are badges in the shape of a dove produced by a non-profit organization in Canada.
International Day of Peace (en.wikipedia.org)

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2012 Summer Paralympics Games starts Today


2012 Summer Paralympics Games starts Today

The 2012 Summer Paralympic Games will be the fourteenth Paralympics and will take place between 29 August and 9 September, as governed by the International Paralympic Committee. They will be held in London, United Kingdom, after the city was successful with its bid for the 2012 Summer Olympics. It is the second largest multi-sport event ever held within the United Kingdom after the 2012 Summer Olympics.

The Games are expected to be the largest and most commercially successful Paralympics ever: Great Britain’s success during the recent Summer Olympics and growing interest in Paralympic sport worldwide contributed to a significantly higher demand for tickets to the Games than in previous years, breaking numerous sales records.[2] They will also mark the return of the Paralympic movement to its birthplace; the British village of Stoke Mandeville first hosted the Stoke Mandeville Games, an athletics event for British World War II veterans, to coincide with the opening of the 1948 Summer Olympics in London. The Stoke Mandeville Games were the first ever organized sporting event for the disabled, and served as a precursor to the modern Paralympic Games.[2][3] Stoke Mandeville also co-hosted the 1984 Summer Paralympics with the American region of Long Island after its original host, the University of Illinois in Champaign, Illinois, pulled out of hosting the Games due to financial issues.[4]

The Games will officially be opened by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.[1]

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[1] London 2012 Paralympic Games to be opened by The Queen”. LOCOG (London2012.com). 29 February 2012. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
[2] “Paralympics organisers feel London is launchpad for mass-market Games”. The Guardian.
[3] “History of the Paralympics”. BBC Sport. Retrieved 1 August 2012.
[4] “Mandeville Legacy: Stoke Mandeville 1984”. Retrieved 14 August 2012.

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August 20th – National Radio Day


Today is National Radio Day

A number of inventors played a role in creating this important medium. A number of inventions and discoveries were required to make the radio a reality. This included both transmission and reception methods and technology. The radio somewhat evolved from the telegraph and the telephone, with wireless telegraph directly contributing to its invention. [1]
Celebrate National Radio Day by simply listening to your favorite radio stations.
We found some evidence on blogs and radio station websites suggesting that this is a more recently established holiday, dating only to the 1990s. Radio station personnel, in a number of radio stations, began talking about creating their own holiday. After all, they frequently promoted bizarre and unique holidays of all kinds. From these conversations, this special day took on life. [2]
Also with all the weird weather throughout the U.S. we all should have a battery operated radio in case the electricity goes out.

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[1], [2] National Radio Day (www.holidayinsights.com)

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August 19 – National Aviation Day


Today is National Aviation Day.

It’s the United States national observation that celebrates the development of aviation.

The holiday was established in 1939 by Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who issued a presidential proclamation which designated the anniversary of Orville Wright’s birthday to be National Aviation Day (Mr. Wright, born in 1871, was still alive when the proclamation was first issued, and would live another nine years). The proclamation was codified (USC 36:A:I:118), and it allows the sitting US President to proclaim August 19 as National Aviation Day each year, if desired. His/her proclamation may direct all federal buildings and installations to fly the US flag on that day, and may encourage citizens to observe the day with activities that promote interest in aviation.

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National Aviation Day   (www.http://en.wikipedia.org)

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August 16 – Elvis Presley Commemoration Day – 35th Anniversary of Elvis Presley’s Death


Elvis Presley Commemoration Day

Elvis Aron Presley died 35 years ago on Aug. 16, 1977 at his home Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee, at the age of 42. The official cause of Elvis’ death was recorded as cardiac arrhythmia, but according to accounts he apparently overdosed on prescription drugs.

Tens of thousands of Elvis Presley fans are expected to pay respects to the rock ‘n’ roll icon during a candlelight vigil at Graceland marking the 35th anniversary of his death.

Elvis Aron Presley was born on January 8, 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi to Vernon and Gladys Presley. Elvis had a twin brother, Jessie Garon, who was stillborn. In 1948 Elvis and his parents moved to Memphis, Tennessee where Elvis graduated high school in 1953.

Elvis was drafted into the Army on March 24th, 1958. He was released on leave just a few months later to tend to his ailing mother who passed the day after he arrived home.

Later being stationed to Germany he met Priscilla Beaulieu on September 13, 1959 at a casual party at his off base home in Bad Nauheim, Germany.

In March of 1962, at 16 years old, Elvis brought Priscilla to Los Angeles for a visit. In 1963 Priscilla moved to the United States to be with Elvis. He enrolled her in a Catholic High School.

In 1966 Elvis proposed to Priscilla with a 3 1/2 carat diamond ring. Elvis and Priscilla married on May 1, 1967 in Las Vegas at the Aladdin Hotel in Milton Prell’s suite followed by a honeymoon in Palms Springs for a few days. Elvis was 32 years old and Priscilla was 21 years old when they married.

On February 1, 1968 Lisa Marie Presley was born in Memphis, Tennessee.

After 5 years of marriage Elvis and Priscilla separated in August of 1972. On January 8, 1973 Elvis filed for divorce giving Priscilla custody of Lisa Marie.

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August 14 – V-J Day

August 14, 1945, Victory over Japan Day (V-J Day) is a name chosen for the day on which the surrender of Japan occurred, effectively ending World War II. Since then, both August 14 and August 15 have been known as “V-J Day”. The term has been applied to both of the days on which the initial announcement of Japan’s surrender was made – to the afternoon of August 15, 1945, in Japan, and, because of time zone differences, to August 14, 1945.

In the summer of 1945, what most Americans on duty in the Pacific dreaded was the upcoming invasion of Japan. The atomic explosions at Hiroshima and Nagasaki canceled that operation when the Japanese quickly surrendered. There was initial suspicion in some quarters that the surrender was a trick; Marines waited two weeks after VJ Day before actually landing. But when American occupiers saw the devastation that bombing had caused and were greeted by deferential Japanese civilians, the knowledge that the war was finally over could sink in. [1]

The final timetable for the end of World War II began with the atomic bombs dropped on Japan on August 6 and 9. On the morning of August 10, news swept the Allied nations of Japan’s acceptance of the surrender terms. This prompted impromptu celebrations throughout the Allied countries. The news though was premature and a few tense days ensued until the surrender was confirmed on the 14th. [2]

The informal surrender occurred on August 14, 1945, followed by the formal surrender on September 2, 1945. V-J Day can be considered any one of three days: August 14 or 15, or September 2, but most observances occur on August 14. [3]

From Pearl Harbor to V-J Day: The American Armed Forces in World War II (American Ways Series)
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[1] VJ Day (www.loc.gov)
[2] [3] A Commemoration of V-J Day, 14 August 1945, and Japan’s Formal Surrender, 2 September 1945A Commemoration of V-J Day, 14 August 1945, and Japan’s Formal Surrender, 2 September 1945 (www.skylighters.org)

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