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Archive for August, 2010

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Sam Houston elected president of Texas

Posted in Anniversary, Famous battles, History on Thursday, 26 August 2010

picture, Sam Houston leading his men against the Mexicans

Sam Houston leading his men against the Mexicans. Illustration by Angus McBride

5 September marks the anniversary of the election of Sam Houston to the position of president of the Republic of Texas in 1836. Born in Virginia in 1793, Houston spent some years living with the Cherokees in Tennessee, served in the War of 1812 and was convicted of beating up a Congressman, forcing him to move to Texas.

In Texas, Houston supported independence from Mexico and defeated General Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto; Texas gained its independence and Houston was elected its first president.

More pictures of Sam Houston can be found here. Many more pictures relating to the histories of Texas and Mexico can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

Birth of an outlaw

Posted in Anniversary, Law, Legend on Thursday, 26 August 2010

picture, A reward poster for Jesse James

A reward poster for Jesse James. Illustration by John Keay

5 September marks the anniversary of the birth of American outlaw Jesse James in 1847. Born in Clay County, Missouri, James was a Confederate soldier during the Civil War, after which he turned to crime. As a member of various gangs he robbed banks, stagecoaches and trains, at his most active in 1866 and 1876. A botched bank robbery that latter year resulted in the capture or death of a number of the James-Younger gang. James continued to live the life of a criminal until 1882 when he was killed by Robert Ford, a member of his gang who was hoping to collect the reward on James’ head.

picture, A train robbery in the old Wild West

A train robbery in the old Wild West

More pictures of Jesse James can be found here. Many more pictures relating to the American Wild West can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

Death of Albert Schweitzer

Posted in Anniversary, Medicine, Music on Wednesday, 25 August 2010

picture, Dr Albert Schweitzer

Dr Albert Schweitzer. Illustration by Alberto Salinas

4 September marks the anniversary of the death of doctor, musician and missionary, Albert Schweitzer in 1965. Born in 1875, Schweitzer was an Alsatian (Franco-German), educated in theology and music, who went on to become an exceptional organist. In 1899 he became a deacon at a church near Strasbourg, returning to university in 1905 to study medicine.

Armed with his doctorate, he set up a medical mission at Lambarene in what is now Gabon. He and his wife treated thousands of patients, returning to Europe in 1917 after over four years exhausting work. He returned in 1923-27, 1929-32 and 1937-48. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1952.

More pictures of Dr Schweitzer can be found here. Many more picture relating to the history, wildlife and cultures of Africa can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

Two birthdays for television

Posted in Anniversary, Science, Technology on Wednesday, 25 August 2010

picture, Television, the weather report

The weather report, one of the regular features of today’s television. Illustration by John Keay

4 September marks the anniversary of two celebrations for television. In 1940 a demonstration of colour TV was given on station W2XAB by the Columbia Broadcasting System in the USA. And in 1951, the first live transcontinental television broadcast took place in San Francisco, California, from the Japanese Peace Treaty Conference.

More pictures relating to television can be found here. Many more pictures relating to the history of communication can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

Britain declares war on Germany

Posted in Anniversary, History, World War 2 on Tuesday, 24 August 2010

picture, Hitler planning the invasion of Europe

Hitler planning the invasion of Europe. Illustration by Gerry Wood

3 September marks the anniversary of the declaration of war between Great Britain and Germany at the beginning of World War II in 1939. Although long-expected, the German invasion of Poland was the final tipping point which led to all-out hostilities between Germany and Britain.

The war would finally be won by the allies in 1945 but only at the cost of millions – estimated between 50 and 70 – of human lives and the utter destruction of cities across Europe and the Far East.

picture, London Underground during the Blitz

London Underground during the Blitz. Illustration by Harry Green

Many wide selection of pictures relating to the history of World War II can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

The Treaty of Paris ends the American War of Independence

Posted in Anniversary, Famous battles, History on Tuesday, 24 August 2010

picture, Lord Cornwallis surrenders to George Washington at Yorktown

Lord Cornwallis surrenders to George Washington at Yorktown. Illustration by Severino Baraldi

3 September marks the anniversary of the end of the American War of Independence. The war, fought between Great Britain and thirteen of its colonies in North America, the culmination of the American Revolution. Americans had formally declared their independence in 1776 and a bitter struggle ensued, with Britain backed by France, Spain and Holland. The war, however, went to the Americans and came to an end with the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown in 1781.

The official end of the war celebrated today was the day of the signing of the Treaty of Paris in 1783 which formally ended the conflict between Great Britain and the United States of America.

More picture relating to the War of Independence can be found here. Many more illustrations relating to the history of the United States of America can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

The Great Fire of London

Posted in Anniversary, History on Monday, 23 August 2010

picture, The Great Fire of London

The Great Fire of London. Illustration by Peter Jackson

2 September marks the anniversary of the beginning of the Great Fire of London in 1666. The fire began in the bakery of Thomas Farriner in Pudding Lane and was fanned by a strong easterly wind. The indecisive mayor, Sir Thomas Bloodworth, failed to create firebreaks – by means of demolition – and the fire spread to the heart of the city. The fire was eventually brought under control, having burned from early Sunday morning until the following Wednesday.

Although only a handful of people at most died, the fire destroyed 13,500 houses, 87 churches, 44 company halls, the Royal Exchange, three City Gates and St. Paul’s Cathedral.

More pictures relating to the Great Fire of London can be found here. Many more illustrations relating to the history of London through the ages can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

Death of Sir Thomas Telford

Posted in Anniversary, Architecture, Technology on Monday, 23 August 2010

picture, The Menai Suspension Bridge

The Menai Suspension Bridge, designed by Sir Thomas Telford

2 September marks the anniversary of the death of Sir Thomas Telford in 1834. Telford, born in Glendinning, Scotland, in 1834, trained as a stonemason. Through a wealthy patron, he became Surveyor of Public Works in Shropshire and he became responsible for various rebuilding and renovation projects. His most famous works include the Ellesmere Canal and the Menai Suspension Bridge between mainland Wales and the island of Anglesey.

More pictures relating to Sir Thomas Telford can be found here. Many more pictures relating to engineers and feats of engineering can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

Birth of Edgar Rice Burroughs

Posted in Anniversary, Literature on Sunday, 22 August 2010

picture, Tarzan of the Apes

Tarzan of the Apes, Edgar Rice Burroughs most famous creation

1 September marks the anniversary of the birth of Edgar Rice Burroughs in 1875. Born in Chicago, Burroughs trained for the military but was diagnosed with a heart condition and discharged. After a string of minor jobs, he began writing in 1911 and had his first book, Under the Moons of Mars, published in 1912. Burroughs fictional Mars – Barsoom – was an immediate hit and was quickly followed by his most famous creation, Tarzan of the Apes.

Tarzan rocketed Burroughs to stardom and earned him a fortune. Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. continues to exploit Tarzan in every media long after Burroughs’ death in 1950.

More pictures of Tarzan can be found here. Many more illustrations relating to authors and their creations can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.

The longest reign

Posted in Anniversary, History, Royalty on Sunday, 22 August 2010

picture, King Louis XIV, the Sun King

King Louis XIV, the Sun King. Illustration by Andrew Howat

1 September marks the anniversary of the death of King Louis XIV in 1715. Born in 1638, his birth was considered a miracle as his father, Louis XIII, had been estranged from his wife, Anne of Austria, for 23 years.

Louis ascended to the throne in 1643 and reigned until his death, a period of 72 years, 3 months and 18 days – the longest reign of any European monarch. He was known as Le Roi Soleil (The Sun King) and France gained enormous power through a series of wars during his years in power.

More pictures of King Louis XIV can be found here. Many more illustrations relating to royalty throughout history can be found at the Look and Learn picture library.