History of Father’s Day: the Beginning

June 14, 2024
Fathers Day

HISTORY OF FATHER’S DAY: the Beginning [NOTE: I wrote a more extended and serious version of this article for CBS.com several years ago. It has been published on their network of sites for major cities nationwide. You can find that article here.]   Origin of Father’s Day The celebration of Father’s Day goes back to the beginning, actually to the Garden of Eden when Abel gave his father Adam a razor while his brother Cain gave his father a snake-skin tie. This was the beginning of Cain’s downward slide.   Contrasts Scholars have debated for ages why Mother’s Day seems…

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History of Flag Day

June 13, 2024
Flag Day

HISTORY OF FLAG DAY June 14 is Flag Day in the United States. While it may not be as widely celebrated as other American holidays, it is one of the oldest. It was resolved by the Second Continental Congress in 1777, even before the conclusion of the American War of Independence, the Revolutionary War. Related posts: History of the 4th of July: Thomas Jefferson History of St. John the Baptist Day: Midsummer History of July: Where Do We Get That Name?

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History of Shavuot: The Feast of Weeks

June 11, 2024
Shavuot poster, late 1940s

HISTORY OF SHAVUOT Tonight at sunset, June 11, begins the Jewish holiday Shavuot, also known as the Feast of Weeks, and continues until sundown on June 13. The holiday, also known in Greek as Pentecost, is on the sixth day of the Hebrew lunarsolar calendar month of Sivan, which means that in the Gregorian solar calendar, it may occur between May 15 and June 14. Shavuot, or Shavuos, is called the “Feast of Weeks” because it occurs seven weeks (7 × 7 days) or 50 days (inclusive) after the first day of the Jewish Passover. It is distinguished from the…

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History of D-Day: 80 Years Ago

June 4, 2024

HISTORY OF D-DAY Why has D-Day captured the imagination of American consciousness for over three-quarters of a century?   Eighty years ago, on June 6, 1944, the Allies launched an offensive on the Normandy coast of France to liberate continental Europe from the Nazi German occupation. On Twitter/X, the hashtag is #DDay80 D-Day was the largest invasion by sea and air in history, literally turning the tide. It was the beginning of the end of the War. General Eisenhower, Supreme Commander of Allied Forces, sent the troops out that day: “You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have…

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History of the Summer of Love – 1967: Part 4, Rock & Roll

June 2, 2024
sgt pepper

HISTORY OF THE SUMMER OF LOVE – 1967: PART 4, ROCK & ROLL   It was twenty years ago today Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play They’ve been going in and out of style But they’re guaranteed to raise a smile   Rock & Roll in the late ’60s was exemplified when The Beatles released Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in the U.S. on June 2, 1967. It was released in the U.K. the day before. No other rock & roll album defined the soundtrack of the Summer of Love better than Sgt. Pepper. It captured the fantasy,…

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History of June

May 31, 2024
junona, ny carlsberg glyptotek, copenhagen

HISTORY OF JUNE June represents the year’s halfway point, the sixth of the twelve months of the Gregorian calendar, which we currently use in the West, and the earlier Julian calendar, named for Julius Caesar, the namesake of July. Where do we get the name for June?   What’s In A Name? Ovid, author of the bi-millennial best-selling magnum opus Metamorphoses — where he takes the Greek myths and gives them Roman names — suggests two possible etymologies. The first and more likely origin is the Roman goddess Juno, wife of Jupiter, who was referred to as Hera by the…

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History of the Golden Gate Bridge: 87 Years Old

May 27, 2024
golden gate bridge

HISTORY OF THE GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE This week, we celebrate the 87th anniversary of the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge. On May 27, 1937, the bridge opened to traffic after taking over five years to build. I remember asking my father when I was young: “Why isn’t the Golden Gate Bridge golden?” He didn’t have an answer apart from his observation that it was expensive to paint.   Color of Golden Gate Bridge He didn’t know that the steel for the bridge, which came from Bethlehem Steel foundries in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, originally came coated with a red…

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History of Memorial Day: Where did it Begin?

May 27, 2024

HISTORY OF MEMORIAL DAY: BOALSBURG, PA The city of Boalsburg, Pennsylvania, an American village on the National Historic Register, claims to be the birthplace of Memorial Day, as do at least 24 other towns in America. I first visited this hamlet near State College, home of Penn State University, decades ago. Boalsburg’s claim goes back to a practice at the end of the Civil War. The town has a local museum and a history stretching over two centuries. The 19th-century feel of the village persists. A Memorial Day Festival is held there every year. They have their own Facebook page…

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History of Towel Day: Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

May 25, 2024
Towel Day

HISTORY OF TOWEL DAY May 25 celebrates Towel Day to honor Douglas Adams, the author of the five (or six) book trilogy Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Created in May 2001 to mark the passing of English science fiction humor author Douglas Adams, the day is set aside for fans of his writings to carry a towel throughout the day in honor of the author.   Why a towel? Stay tuned Although it occurs on the same day as the anniversary of the premier of the first Star Wars movie – and the original radio version of tHGttG came out the…

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