Anniversaries and commemorations come and go daily. Most of us, even the best historians, miss most occasions. If we think of history as events then we are faced with a continually showering in the grains of sand. Nevertheless, we do pick out certain patterns in the remembrance of historical dates. The blog here reminds us of some dates where the local, state, national, and global perspectives entwine.
What Time is It? It is flow of a sandstorm that will on each day compress somewhere into a structure – sandstone, selected and only remembered in the longue durée.
|21 May 1871||The first rack railway in Europe, the Vitznau–Rigi Railway on Mount Rigi in Switzerland, is opened.|
|Saturday, 21 May 1921||Andrei Sakharov born, Soviet physicist born, human rights activist born, and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (which he declined) (d. 1989)|
|Saturday, 21 May 1921||Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar born, Indian philosopher born, author of the socio-economic Progressive Utilization Theory (d. 1990)|
|Saturday, 21 May 1921||Oswald Watt (born 1878) died, aviator|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1946||At the Los Alamos Laboratory, Dr. Louis Slotin saves his coworkers but receives a fatal dose of ionizing radiation (the incident is initially classified).|
|Sunday, 21 May 1961||Civil rights movement: Alabama Governor John Patterson declares martial law in an attempt to restore order after race riots break out.|
|Friday, 21 May 1971||Dennis King died, English actor (b. 1897)|
|Thursday, 21 May 1981||In France, Socialist François Mitterrand becomes the first socialist President of the French Fifth Republic.|
|Thursday, 21 May 1981||Josh Hamilton born, American baseball player|
|Thursday, 21 May 1981||Anna Rogowska born, Polish pole vaulter|
|Thursday, 21 May 1981||Yuki Shimoda died, American actor (b. 1921)|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1991||Lino Brocka died, Filipino film director (b. 1939)|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1991||Mengistu Haile Mariam, president of the People’s Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, flees Ethiopia to Zimbabwe, effectively bringing the Ethiopian Civil War to an end.|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1991||In Sriperumbudur, India, former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi is assassinated at a public meeting in Sriperumbudur, by suicide bomber Thenmozhi Rajaratnam; many others are killed in the explosion.|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1991||Rajiv Gandhi died, 6th Prime Minister of India (b. 1944)|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1991||Sarah Ramos born, American actress|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1996||The MV Bukoba sinks in Tanzanian waters in Lake Victoria, killing nearly 1,000 people in one of Africa’s worst maritime disasters.|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1996||The Trappist Martyrs of Atlas are executed.|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1996||Paul Delph died, American musician and producer (b. 1957)|
|Tuesday, 21 May 1996||Lash LaRue died, American actor (b. 1917)|
|Monday, 21 May 2001||The Federal Government announces a commission into the HIH insurance disaster with $500 million allocated to victims.|
|Saturday, 21 May 2011||Bill Hunter died, 71, actor|
|Saturday, 21 May 2011||Grímsvötn, Iceland’s most active volcano, erupts and causes disruption to air travel in Northwestern Europe.|
|Saturday, 21 May 2016||Sándor Tarics died, Hungarian Olympic water polo player (b. 1913)|
|Saturday, 21 May 2016||Nick Menza died, German-born American drummer (b. 1964)|
Images Citations in Composite: ID 17208541 © Anhong | Dreamstime.com; ID 35001957 © DiversityStudio1 | Dreamstime.com; ID 156394527 © Gerd Zahn | Dreamstime.com
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Professional Historian at Professional Historians Association (Queensland) Inc.
Neville Buch (Pronounced Book) Ph.D. is a certified member of the Professional Historians Association (Queensland). Since 2010 he has operated a sole trade business in history consultancy. He was a Q ANZAC 100 Fellow 2014-2015 at the State Library of Queensland. Dr Buch was the PHA (Qld) e-Bulletin, the monthly state association’s electronic publication, and was a member of its Management Committee. He is the Managing Director of the Brisbane Southside History Network.
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