Today in 1943, a US Navy ship almost caused a gigantic tragedy, by inadvertently launching a torpedo at the president of the United States. Plus: this month in 1932, the UK’s Home Office got a complaint about ancient drawing known as the Cerne Abbas Giant and his “impassioned obscenity.”
For Veterans Day, the story of the Comanche Code Talkers, 17 veterans of the second World War who created an unbroken code in their native language that saved lives and helped the US military effort.
On this day in 1943, an interesting headline in the New York Times: “Sicily Vying With Hawaii To Become 49th U.S. State.” Of course, neither Sicily nor Hawaii became the 49th state; Alaska did. But there really was an effort to bring Sicily into the Union.
Today in 1914, the birthday of Gino Bartali. The Italian cycling star won the Tour de France in 1938, and won a second time a decade later. But what was even more impressive was what he did in between those two wins.
The Canadian Tulip Festival is getting underway in Ottawa. Here's the history of the annual event, which (pun intended) has its roots in the history of World War II.
The famous cover of The Clash's landmark album "London Calling" was taken on September 21, 1979, according to the liner notes. Except that Dave Marin, a concertgoer who was there when the photo was taken, has a concert stub that says September 20th. And he's spent decades trying to get the world to notice that the album credits are a day off. Plus: today in 1940, a bomb explodes in London, and the locals decide to turn the crater it left behind into something special.
When World War II put many pro athletes into military service, pro sports leagues had to get creative. That's how on this day in 1943, two pro football teams that normally competed against each other joined forces. Plus: for World Smile Day, we check in on the story of the guy who first designed the smiley face.
Forget the air campaign, it was golf handicaps that almost lost the war for the Allies.