5:33am

Thu September 20, 2012
KALW Almanac

Thursday September 20, 2012

  • 264th Day of 2012 /102 Remaining
  • 2 Days Until The First Day of Autumn
  • Sunrise:6:56
  • Sunset:7:09
  • 12 Hours 13 Minutes of Daylight
  • Moon Rise:12:15pm
  • Moon Set:10:23pm
  • Moon’s Phase: 28 %
  • The Next Full Moon
  • September 29 @ 8:18pm
  • Full Corn Moon
  • Full Harvest Moon

This full moon’s name is attributed to Native Americans because it marked when corn was  supposed to be harvested. Most often, the September full moon is actually the Harvest Moon, which is the full Moon that occurs closest to the autumn equinox. In two years out of three, the Harvest Moon comes in September, but in some years it occurs in October. At the peak of harvest, farmers can work late into the night by the light of this Moon. Usually the full Moon rises an average of 50 minutes later each night, but for the few nights around the Harvest Moon, the Moon seems to rise at nearly the same time each night: just 25 to 30 minutes later across the U.S., and only 10 to 20 minutes later for much of Canada and Europe. Corn, pumpkins, squash, beans, and wild rice the chief Indian staples are now ready for gathering.

  • Tides
  • High:2:56am/2:22pm
  • Low:8:06am/9:14pm
  • Rainfall (measured July 1 – June 30)
  • This Year:0.03
  • Last Year:0.11
  • Normal To Date:0.00
  • Annual Seasonal Average:23.80
  • Holidays
  • National Rum Punch Day
  • Liberation Day-East Timor
  • On This Day In …
  • 1519 --- Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan sets sail from Spain in an effort to find a western sea route to the rich Spice Islands of Indonesia. In command of five ships and 270 men, Magellan sailed to West Africa and then to Brazil, where he searched the South American coast for a strait that would take him to the Pacific. He searched the Río de la Plata, a large estuary south of Brazil, for a way through; failing, he continued south along the coast of Patagonia. At the end of March 1520, the expedition set up winter quarters at Port St. Julian. On Easter Sunday at midnight, the Spanish captains mutinied against their Portuguese captain, but Magellan crushed the revolt, executing one of the captains and leaving another ashore when his ship left St. Julian in August. On October 21, he finally discovered the strait he had been seeking. The Strait of Magellan, as it became known, is located near the tip of South America, separating Tierra del Fuego and the continental mainland. Only three ships entered the passage; one had been wrecked and another deserted. It took 38 days to navigate the treacherous strait, and when ocean was sighted at the other end Magellan wept with joy. He was the first European explorer to reach the Pacific Ocean from the Atlantic. His fleet accomplished the westward crossing of the ocean in 99 days, crossing waters so strangely calm that the ocean was named "Pacific," from the Latin word pacificus, meaning "tranquil." By the end, the men were out of food and chewed the leather parts of their gear to keep themselves alive. On March 6, 1521, the expedition landed at the island of Guam.
  • 1881 --- Chester Arthur is inaugurated, becoming the third person to serve as president in that year. The year 1881 began with Republican Rutherford B. Hayes in office. Hayes served out his first and only term and officially turned over the reins of government to James A. Garfield who happened to be a close friend of his, in March 1881. Just four months into his term, on July 2, Garfield was shot by a crazed assassin named Charles Guiteau. Guiteau claimed to have killed Garfield because he refused to grant Guiteau a political appointment. Garfield sustained wounds to his back and abdomen and struggled to recover throughout the summer. Though it appeared he would pull through in early September, the autopsy report revealed that the internal bullet wound contributed to an aneurism that ultimately killed Garfield on September 19.
  • 1884 --- If you thought equal rights for women is a modern concept, think again. On this day, the Equal Rights Party was formed in San Francisco, California. The party nominated Mrs. Belva Lockwood as their U.S. presidential candidate and Marietta Snow as Lockwood’s running mate.
  • 1921 --- KDKA in Pittsburgh, PA, started a daily radio newscast. It was one of the first in the U.S.
  • 1946 --- The first annual Cannes Film Festival opens at the resort city of Cannes on the French Riviera. The festival had intended to make its debut in September 1939, but the outbreak of World War II forced the cancellation of the inaugural Cannes. The world's first annual international film festival was inaugurated at Venice in 1932. By 1938, the Venice Film Festival had become a vehicle for Fascist and Nazi propaganda, with Benito Mussolini's Italy and Adolf Hitler's Germany dictating the choices of films and sharing the prizes among themselves. Outraged, France decided to organize an alternative film festival. In June 1939, the establishment of a film festival at Cannes, to be held from September 1 to 20, was announced in Paris. Cannes, an elegant beach city, lies southeast of Nice on the Mediterranean coast. One of the resort town's casinos agreed to host the event. Films were selected and the filmmakers and stars began arriving in mid-August. Among the American selections was The Wizard of Oz. France offered The Nigerian, and Poland The Black Diamond. The USSR brought the aptly titled Tomorrow, It's War. On the morning of September 1, the day the festival was to begin, Hitler invaded Poland. In Paris, the French government ordered a general mobilization, and the Cannes festival was called off after the screening of just one film: German American director William Dieterle's The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Two days later, France and Britain declared war on Germany. World War II lasted six long years. In 1946, France's provincial government approved a revival of the Festival de Cannes as a means of luring tourists back to the French Riviera. The festival began on September 20, 1946, and 18 nations were represented. The festival schedule included Austrian American director Billy Wilder's The Lost Weekend, Italian director Roberto Rossellini's Open City, French director René Clement's The Battle of the Rails, and British director David Lean's Brief Encounter. At the first Cannes, organizers placed more emphasis on creative stimulation between national productions than on competition. Nine films were honored with the top award: Grand Prix du Festival. The Cannes Film Festival stumbled through its early years; the 1948 and 1950 festivals were canceled for economic reasons. In 1952, the Palais des Festivals was dedicated as a permanent home for the festival, and in 1955, the Palme d'Or (Golden Palm) award for best film of the festival was introduced, an allusion to the palm-planted Promenade de la Croisette that parallels Cannes' celebrated beach. In the 1950s, the Festival International du Film de Cannes came to be regarded as the most prestigious film festival in the world. It still holds that allure today, though many have criticized it as overly commercial. More than 30,000 people come to Cannes each May to attend the festival, about 100 times the number of film devotees who showed up for the first Cannes in 1946.
  • 1962 --- James Meredith, a black student, was blocked from enrolling at the University of Mississippi by Governor Ross R. Barnett. Meredith was later admitted.
  • 1963 --- An optimistic and upbeat President John F. Kennedy suggests that the Soviet Union and the United States cooperate on a mission to mount an expedition to the moon. The proposal caught both the Soviets and many Americans off guard.  In 1961, shortly after his election as president, John F. Kennedy announced that he was determined to win the "space race" with the Soviets. Since 1957, when the Soviet Union sent a small satellite--Sputnik--into orbit around the earth, Russian and American scientists had been competing to see who could make the next breakthrough in space travel. Outer space became another frontier in the Cold War. Kennedy upped the ante in 1961 when he announced that the United States would put a man on the moon before the end of the decade. Much had changed by 1963, however. Relations with the Soviet Union had improved measurably. The Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962 had been settled peacefully. A "hot line" had been established between Washington and Moscow to help avert conflict and misunderstandings. A treaty banning the open air testing of nuclear weapons had been signed in 1963. On the other hand, U.S. fascination with the space program was waning. Opponents of the program cited the high cost of the proposed trip to the moon, estimated at more than $20 billion. In the midst of all of this, Kennedy, in a speech at the United Nations, proposed that the Soviet Union and United States cooperate in mounting a mission to the moon. "Why," he asked the audience, "therefore, should man's first flight to the moon be a matter of national competition?" Kennedy noted, "the clouds have lifted a little" in terms of U.S.-Soviet relations, and declared "The Soviet Union and the United States, together with their allies, can achieve further agreements--agreements which spring from our mutual interest in avoiding mutual destruction."  Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko applauded Kennedy's speech and called it a "good sign," but refused to comment on the proposal for a joint trip to the moon. In Washington, there was a good bit of surprise--and some skepticism--about Kennedy's proposal. The "space race" had been one of the focal points of the Kennedy administration when it came to office, and the idea that America would cooperate with the Soviets in sending a man to the moon seemed unbelievable. Other commentators saw economics, not politics, behind the proposal. With the soaring price tag for the lunar mission, perhaps a joint effort with the Soviets was the only way to save the costly program. What might have come of Kennedy's idea is unknown--just two months later, he was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. His successor, Lyndon B. Johnson, abandoned the idea of cooperating with the Soviets but pushed ahead with the lunar program. In 1969, the United States landed a man on the moon, thus winning a significant victory the "space race."
  • 1970 --- Jim Morrison was found guilty, in Miami, FL, of indecent exposure and profanity. He was acquitted on charges of "lewd and lascivious" behavior. The charges were related to a performance by the Doors.
  • 1973 --- In a highly publicized "Battle of the Sexes" tennis match, top women's player Billie Jean King, 29, beats Bobby Riggs, 55, a former No. 1 ranked men's player. Riggs (1918-1995), a self-proclaimed male chauvinist, had boasted that women were inferior, that they couldn't handle the pressure of the game and that even at his age he could beat any female player. The match was a huge media event, witnessed in person by over 30,000 spectators at the Houston Astrodome and by another 50 million TV viewers worldwide. King made a Cleopatra-style entrance on a gold litter carried by men dressed as ancient slaves, while Riggs arrived in a rickshaw pulled by female models. Legendary sportscaster Howard Cosell called the match, in which King beat Riggs 6-4, 6-3, 6-3. King's achievement not only helped legitimize women's professional tennis and female athletes, but it was seen as a victory for women's rights in general.
  • 1977 --- The first of the "boat people" arrived in San Francisco from Southeast Asia under a new U.S. resettlement program.
  • 1984 --- NBC-TV debuted The Cosby Show. Bill Cosby played Dr. Heathcliff (Cliff) Huxtable. His lovely wife, Clair, was played by Phylicia Rashad. The Huxtable kids were Sondra, age 20 (Sabrina Le Beauf), Denise, age 16 (Lisa Bonet), Theodore, age 14 (Malcom-Jamal Warner), Vanessa, age 8 (Tempestt Bledsoe) and Rudy, age 5 (Keshia Knight Pulliam). The premiere was the most watched show of the week and the show went on to become an Emmy Award-winner and one of the most popular on television for eight years.
  • Birthdays
  • Upton Sinclair
  • 'Jelly Roll' Morton
  • Sir James Dewar
  • Anne Meara
  • Sophia Loren
  • Crispin Glover
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