The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Tim ONeill
Funny Guy 

Shoes for both feet, Mount St. Helen's, Spam

This week in history


May 15: 53,032 BC—Tribesman Nacho discovers the only way to stop a bad Cro-Magnon with a rock is a good Cro-Magnon with a rock. 1817—The Asylum for the Relief of Persons Deprived of the Use of Their Reason opens in Philadelphia. It is the first private mental health hospital in the U.S. 1912—Ty Cobb is suspended from baseball after rushing a heckler at a New York Highlander game. Born: Twin brothers and successful playwrights Anthony Shaffer (“Sleuth”) and Peter Shaffer (“Equus”) (1926). Died: Vintner Robert Mondavi (2008). Straw Hat Day. Today’s Word: Quadrigamist—a person married to four people or been married four times.

May 16: HUMOUNGOUS FOOD HISTORY DAY! 1866—Root beer is invented by Charles Elmer Hires. 1891—After combining chopped pork shoulder meat, ham, salt, water, modified potato starch, and sodium nitrate, the George A. Hormel & Co. introduces the product we now known as Spam. Get more information at the Spam Museum in Austin, Texas. It really makes a darn good sandwich any way you slice it. 1939—The federal government first issues food stamps in order to prevent starvation. 1965—Spaghetti-O’s first go on sale. Born: Philip Danforth Armour (1832). Died: Sir Frederick Gowland Hopkins, the discoverer of vitamins (1947). St. Honoratus’ Day, patron saint of bakers, pastry chefs, confectioners and flour merchants. Today’s Word: Saris- searing meat in hot fat. Mmm-mmmm.

May 17: 1775—The Continental Congress bans trade with Canada as a result of the Revolutionary War. 1792—At 70 Wall Street in New York City, 24 merchants form the New York Stock Exchange. Two shares of stock are traded, setting a record high. 1875—Oliver Lewis rides Aristides to win the first Kentucky Derby. 1987—37 U.S. sailors are killed when Iraqi missiles strike the USS Stark. Died: John Deere (1886). NASCAR Day. Today’s Word: Antapology—any response to an apology.

May 18: 1512—In Dorchester, two-year-olds stop using the Old English word “hwi” in favor of the Modern English word “why.” Its repeated use is annoying in either version. 1803—England declares war on France … again. 1933—The Tennessee Valley Act is signed by FDR to facilitate dam construction. 1953—Jacqueline Cochrane becomes the first woman to break the sound barrier. 1980—Mount St Helens erupts, resulting in 60 deaths. 1982—Rev. Sun Myung Moon, founder and leader of the Unification Church, is convicted of tax evasion. Born: Perry Como (1912). Died: Elisha Cook, Jr. (1995). International Pickles Week. Today’s Word: Solecism—an error in wording or grammar.

May 19: 1947—The Pitcairn family of East Nada, Kentucky, wins the Appalachian Landscaping Award after placing a ripped couch, broken washer, rusty dryer and open refrigerator in their front yard. 1962—Marilyn Monroe sings Happy Birthday at a fund raiser for 45-year-old President John F. Kennedy. Her dress had 2,500 flesh colored rhinestones and was sold in 1999 for a quick $1,260,000. 1964—The U.S. State Department informs the media it discovered 40 hidden microphones in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. 2007—Off Cornwall’s coast, U.S. treasure hunters discover a shipwreck containing a cargo of gold and silver valued at about half a billion dollars. Died: Jacqueline Lee Bouvier Kennedy Onassis (1994). Sun Awareness Day (also called May Ray Day). Today’s Word: Chanking—food that is spat-out.

May 20: 1310—Shoes are finally made for both right and left feet. 1874—Levi Strauss begins selling blue jeans, asking $13.50 for a dozen. 1969—Hill 937, a/k/a Hamburger Hill, is captured by U.S. troops. 1982—Vice President Dan Quayle attacks Murphy Brown for being a single mother, apparently unaware she is a fictional TV character. Born: Cherilyn Sarkisian a/k/a Cher (1946). Died: Gilda Radner (1989). Today’s Word: Dop—a copper cup used in diamond cutting.

May 21: 1922—Aviator Charles Lindbergh completes the first solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean. Ten years later to the day, Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly the Atlantic solo. 1972—Lazlo Toth attacks and damages Michelangelo’s La Pieta. 1980—President Jimmy Carter declares a state of emergency on the Love Canal in Niagara Falls, New York, a result of chemical dumping. Families are later evacuated when a study reveals 30 percent of them suffer from chromosome damage. Born in a Cave: Plato (427 BC). Died: Sir Arthur John Gielgud (2000). Today’s Word: Xylidins—a chemical compound worth 19 points in Scrabble.


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