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Posts by billpetro

History of Mach 1: 72 Years Ago – Yeager Breaks the Sound Barrier

THE HISTORY OF MACH 1 On June 10, 1948, The U.S. Air Force confirmed that Capt. Chuck Yeager had repeatedly attained supersonic speeds in the Bell X-1 Background But it was on October 14, 1947, Chuck Yeager, now 96 and a Brigadier General (retired), actually broke the sound barrier for the first time. I met him…

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History of Christopher Columbus

HISTORY OF CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS The man who sailed from Spain to discover America was neither Spanish nor did he actually discover America. But it was true that: In fourteen hundred and ninety-two Columbus sailed the ocean blue Origin He was actually Italian, born in 1451 to a wool merchant in Genoa and first went to…

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History of Yom Kippur: Day of Atonement

HISTORY OF YOM KIPPUR The Jewish High Holy Days begin with Rosh Hashana and continue until Yom Kippur. Yom Kippur, the “Day of Atonement,” or more correctly Yom ha-Kippurim (Leviticus 16), goes back to Jewish antiquity almost 4,000 years to the time of Moses. This most solemn occasion of the Jewish Festival cycle was the…

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History of October: the Pumpkin Spice Saga

HISTORY OF OCTOBER: THE PUMPKIN SPICE SAGA October, the tenth month of the year in both the older Julian and the more recent Gregorian calendar was the 8th month (Latin octo) in the old Roman calendar, but with the addition of January and February got bumped to #10. This month is significant in that, according…

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History of Rosh Hashana

HISTORY OF ROSH HASHANA Rosh Hashana designates the beginning of the Jewish new year, starting today — which according to the Jewish calendar began at sundown last night. “Rosh” is Hebrew for “head” and Rosh Hashana refers to the head of the year on the 1st day of Tishri, the seventh month. Judaism has a…

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History of the Aspens

HISTORY OF THE ASPENS Every year about this time, Fall is ushered in by a flush of Aspen trees as their leaves turn to gold. Where I live in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, the particular aspen is called the trembling or quaking aspen. The broadleaf and the flattened stem cause them to flutter in the…

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History of Oktoberfest: Why is it in September?

HISTORY OF OKTOBERFEST Why is the famous German beer festival held in September if it’s called Oktoberfest? Officially, the beer festival starts the third Saturday in September through early October for 16 to 18 days. History The first Oktoberfest was held in 1810 to celebrate the royal wedding in Munich — the capital of the…

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History of Talk Like a Pirate Day

HISTORY OF TALK LIKE A PIRATE DAY The International Talk Like A Pirate Day began not back in the Golden Age of Pirates in days of yore but in 2002. Celebrated each year on September 19, though it started in the United States, it is now celebrated internationally across the Seven Seas. The Tale The legend…

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