Sweeping Dust Storm in Arizona History

July 8, 2011 · Posted in Uncategorized · Comment 

See Video of Arizona Dust Storm

AP News in Brief at 5:58 a.m. EDT

July 6, 2011 6:01 AM ET

dust storm az

Strong winds push massive dust cloud into Phoenix, reducing visibility and delaying flights

PHOENIX (AP) — A massive dust storm descended on the Phoenix area on Tuesday night, drastically reducing visibility and delaying flights as strong winds downed trees and caused power outages for thousands of residents.

The dust cloud that hit the valley had originated in an afternoon storm in the Tucson area before moving north across the desert, said National Weather Service meteorologist Paul Iniguez. Before bearing down on the Phoenix valley, radar data showed the storm’s towering dust wall had reached as high as 8,000 to 10,000 feet, he said.

Once it neared the valley, the cloud had fallen to some 5,000 feet, according to the weather service. KSAZ-TV in Phoenix reported the storm appeared to be roughly 50 miles wide in some spots. It briefly blanketed the city’s downtown at around nightfall.

“This was pretty significant,” Iniguez told The Associated Press. “We heard from a lot of people who lived here for a number of storms and this was the worst they’d seen.”

The storm was part of the Arizona monsoon season, which typically starts in mid-June and lasts through Sept. 30.

Prelude to Rebellion

July 3, 2011 · Posted in Uncategorized · Comment 

The1850’s in America were ripe with sectional tension. The issue of slavery had become the predominate issue that would permeate local, state and national politic’s for the entire decade of the 1850s.

One of the battle ground territories during this period was Kansas. On July 3rd, 1856, the federal House of Representatives votes to admit Kansas as a state into he union, however the Senate rejects the bill. Almost five years later, Congress does admit Kansas as the 34th and more importantly, as a slave free state on January 29th, 1861.

World War II: Before the War

July 2, 2011 · Posted in World War II · Comment 

JUN 19, 2011 |

The years leading up to the declaration of war between the Axis and Allied powers in 1939 were tumultuous times for people across the globe. The Great Depression had started a decade before, leaving much of the world unemployed and desperate. Nationalism was sweeping through Germany, and it chafed against the punitive measures of the Versailles Treaty that had ended World War I. China and the Empire of Japan had been at war since Japanese troops invaded Manchuria in 1931. Germany, Italy, and Japan were testing the newly founded League of Nations with multiple invasions and occupations of nearby countries, and felt emboldened when they encountered no meaningful consequences. The Spanish Civil War broke out in 1936, becoming a rehearsal of sorts for the upcoming World War — Germany and Italy supported the nationalist rebels led by General Francisco Franco, and some 40,000 foreign nationals traveled to Spain to fight in what they saw as the larger war against fascism. In the last few pre-war years, Nazi Germany blazed the path to conflict — rearming, signing a non-aggression treaty with the USSR, annexing Austria, and invading Czechoslovakia. Meanwhile, the United States passed several Neutrality Acts, trying to avoid foreign entanglements as it reeled from the Depression and the Dust Bowl years. Below is a glimpse of just some of these events leading up to World War II. (This entry isPart 1 of a weekly 20-part retrospective of World War II) [45 photos]


Adolf Hitler, age 35, on his release from Landesberg Prison, on December 20, 1924. Hitler had been convicted of treason for his role in an attempted coup in 1923 called the Beer Hall Putsch. This photograph was taken shortly after he finished dictating “Mein Kampf” to deputy Rudolf Hess. Eight years later, Hitler would be sworn in as Chancellor of Germany, in 1933. (Library of Congress) 

Wall of China

Wall of China


A Japanese soldier stands guard over part of the captured Great Wall of China in 1937, during the Second Sino-Japanese War. The Empire of Japan and the Republic of China had been at war intermittently since 1931, but the conflict escalated in 1937. (LOC) #
World War Plane


Japanese aircraft carry out a bombing run over targets in China in 1937. (LOC) #

World War Picture

Japanese soldiers involved in street fighting in Shanghai, China in 1937. The battle of Shanghai lasted from August through November of 1937, eventually involving nearly one million troops. In the end, Shanghai fell to the Japanese, after over 150,000 casualties combined.(LOC) #

War Picture

First pictures of the Japanese occupation of Peiping (Beijing) in China, on August 13, 1937. Under the banner of the rising sun, Japanese troops are shown passing from the Chinese City of Peiping into the Tartar City through Chen-men, the main gate leading onward to the palaces in the Forbidden City. Just a stone’s throw away is the American Embassy, where American residents of Peiping flocked when Sino-Japanese hostilities were at their worst. (AP Photo) #

For the Entire Article at the Atlantic

The First True Animation: Celebrating Winsor McCay

July 2, 2011 · Posted in Uncategorized · Comment 

By Maria Popova

A short silent film from 1911, Little Nemo, contains the seeds of one of the 20th century’s defining storytelling techniques 

Cartoonist and artist Winsor McCay (1869-1964) is often considered the father of true animation, pioneering the drawn image in film and influencing iconic creators for generations to come, from Walt Disney to Moebius to Bill Watterson. His celebrated Little Nemo comic strip appeared in the New York Herald and New York American newspapers between 1905 and 1911.

Upon the series end in print, McCay and J. Stuart Blackman, of Enchanted Drawing fame, co-directed a short silent film—though, at 10 minutes, it was practically feature-length by the standards of the early cinema era—about the process of creating comics. Winsor McCay, the Famous Cartoonist of the N.Y. Herald and His Moving Comics, also referred to simply as Little Nemo, is commonly considered one of the first bits of true animation ever created, exploring the frontiers of a then-nascent storytelling medium that we have now grown to take for granted. (For more on McCay’s work and legacy, I can’t recommend Winsor McCay : His Life and Art enough.)

The real action starts at around 8:11—enjoy, and ponder the remarkable technology-driven creative and artistic empowerment we have witnessed in our lifetimes.

See web-only content:

Meanwhile, a wonderful Kickstarter project is out to resurrect McCay’s last film, The Flying House. The film is in terrible condition and animator Bill Plimpton has set out to painstakingly clean each frame, hand-color it using reprints of McCay’s comics as color guides, and record voice actors for the two lead characters—an admirable effort to preserve a true gem of creative history.

Please join me in supporting it.

This post also appears on Brain Pickings.
Image: Winsor McCayThis article available online at:

The Atlantic Magazine



President Shot!!

July 2, 2011 · Posted in Uncategorized · Comment 

While waiting in the oppessive heat at the railroad station that was summer in Washington, D.C., President James Garfield was gunned down by a person who some called a mad man. The date was July 2, 1881.


Garfield, was born in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, the last of the “log cabin presidents”, in 1831. He served from Ohio in the House of Representatives beginning in 1862 after a brief stint in the military during the Civil War.

In 1880, he became a dark horse candidate for the office of the president on the 36th ballot. That fall he won a narrow victory over Democrat Winfield Scott Hancock also a veteran of the Civil War by a mere 10,000 votes.

While waiting for a train to take him to New England and away from the summer heat, Charles Guiteau an attorney and a person who sought a political position in the Garfield administration, shot the unguarded president in the back.

Though mortally wounded, Garfield in office only four months at the time of the shooting lingered for two and half months before succumbing to his wounds September 19th, 1881 making his tenue the second shortest term as president in American history.

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