June 2nd in History

This date in 1953’s England, Princess Elizabeth was crowned The Queen in Westminster Abbey, London, England.  I watched the coronation ceremony, actually, along with my Daddy.  Anyway, if I have my  facts correct (and, I am certain if I do not, my friends across the pond will instantly inform me) Elizabeth is not the Queen of England as we Americans say for this title has not existed for 300 years.  The correct title is: Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, of which England is a part thereof.

Many ask if she has a surname.  The answer is yes. When Princess Elizabeth (the current queen) served as a subaltern in the Auxiliary Territorial Service during World War II, she was called “Elizabeth Windsor” and continues, when occasion requires a surname, to use Windsor being that she is a descendant of the House of Windsor.  

The coronation of Elizabeth is one of many notable events in history for this date, June 2.  

Since 1935 this date (June 2) will forever be remembered as the date baseball great Babe Ruth (the original BAM) retired – or at least in my family it is noted.  My boys grandpa made sure of this as well as other notable dates in baseball.  You see, Daddy was particularly fond of baseball and recited scoreboards like he was reading off a (long ago & days-gone-by) stock exchange ticker-tape.  In fact, in the 1950’s he leaned a scoreboard against the base of the walnut tree on our front lawn.  Inning after inning he would write the score for all the neighbors to see.  I’m sure it was appreciated by at least one woman who thought he was the dream of the neighborhood.  Mama just took his oversized baseball ego in stride. I helped! 

If you highlight this link: http://youtu.be/7_cQ3qNUGBM  and then right click and choose Go To Address you can hear, in Ruth’s own voice his farewell speech.

Born George Herman Ruth, Jr. on February 6, 1895  he became known to all America as “Babe”, “The Bambino”, and “The Sultan of Swat” during his career that began in 1914 until this date in 1935, a span 22 seasons, with 10 World Series.  Ruth was the first player to hit 60 home runs in a season (1927), a record which held for 34 years until broken by  Roger Maris in 1961.  At the end of his 22 season career he’d racked up a home run record of 714 which he held until 1974 when broken by Hank Aaron. He was as famous for his shenanigans in the 1920’s as he was for his hitting prowess. And baseball owes much to the Babe for rekindling public interest in the sport after the Black Sox scandal of 1919 left the country wondering if baseball was finished as the all american sport.  The fact that we are still talking about the “Babe” after over a century after his birth and over half-century of his retirement from the sport speaks volumes about the impact he had on the sport.  Ruth died August 16, 1948.

Babe Ruth Quotes worth mentioning: “Baseball, was is and always will be to me the best game in the world” — “The way a team plays as a whole determines its success. You may have the greatest bunch of of individual stars in the world, but if the don’t play together, the club won’t be worth a dime” — “Baseball changes through the years. It gets milder” — “Don’t let the fear of striking out hold you back” — “Every strike brings me closer to the next home run” — “I had only one superstition. I made sure to touch all the bases when I hit a home run.” — “Yesterdays home runs don’t win today’s games”  This tells me how the Bam, the Babe felt about the sport he loved.  

Other notable events on this date in history are:
 1924 U.S.A: Indian Citizenship Act passed. (It only took climbing a mountain to accomplish!)  This act conferring citizenship on all Native Americans born within the territorial limits of the country passed in Congress on this date, June 2, 1924.
1924 Canada: The Canadian government considers making an agreement with Japan that would essentially ban the majority of Japanese immigrants coming into the country. The Canadian government would permit a total of 150 Japanese immigrants to come into he country each year to work as farm laborers or household servants.
1931 France: Ten people were killed during the testing of a new suspension bridge; nine trucks fell into the Gironde river. The builder of the bridge was included among the dead.
1949 U.S.A.:  (Now this information is a bit scary!) – An atomic bottle holding one ounce of uranium-235 that was missing was found. Seven-eigths of the uranium-235 that was in the bottle was accounted for, while one-eighth was still missing. The laboratory in Chicago which originally lost the bottle reported it lost in February. 
1966 USA:  First US space probe to land on the moon, “Surveyor 1” has a soft landing on Moon. The Soviet Union was the first when the Russian probe Luna 9 had a successful soft landing on the moon on 3rd February earlier in the year.
1972 U.S.A.:  Plane Hijack in Reno, Nevada of a United Airlines jet. The hijacker demanded a $200,000 ransom while the plane remained grounded. His only hostages were crew members since passengers had not boarded yet. (does stupid sound like a decent word to use for this man?)
1979 Poland:  Pope John Paul II returns home to his native Poland as the first Roman Catholic pontiff to visit a Communist-ruled country.
1985 England: European football’s governing body banned English clubs from playing in Europe indefinitely, following a riot by Liverpool fans who were blamed for the tragedy at Brussels’ Heysel stadium four days ago in which 39 people died.
1997 U.S.A.: Timothy McVeigh, a former U.S. Army soldier, is convicted on 15 counts of murder for his role in the 1995 terrorist bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City .
2000 Zimbabwe: The government of Zimbabwe has issued the latest list of 800 plus farms earmarked for forcible seizure by the government who will divide them up between landless peasants. Apparently white farmers packed their bags.
2002 U.S.A.: The United States has formally withdrawn from the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) treaty signed in 1972 by the US and the then Soviet Union. President George W Bush has said the ABM treaty is an outdated relic of the Cold War. (I wonder Mr. President if on this date your head was in the same sand as that ostrich  you remind me of)
2003 Burma: The ruling military authorities in Burma order the indefinite closure of universities and colleges, and shut down offices of the opposition National League for Democracy following the civil unrest after the arrest of the NLD leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Friday. The NLD had won free elections back in 1990 by a landslide majority, but the military regime which has run the country since 1962 refused to hand over power. (again, my friends be thankful that this can not happen in  your country, my country, our country.)
2005 Australia: Several beached whales were helped back into the ocean by hundreds of locals who moved the animals. The false killer whales, which are actually a type of dolphin, had been stranded on a beach near Busselton in western Australia when the government asked local citizens to help move them back into the water. Only one false killer whale was reported to have died. (This gives me hope — hope that one day this type of reason will fill the heads of men in – say – Burma or Zimbabwe or Afghanistan and others.)
2008 Zimbabwe: (and this is a real kicker) Due to an upcoming election in Zimbabwe between President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai the government has banned the Care International aid group from operating in the country for allegedly campaigning for the opposition. (Although it is thought that up to 4 million Zimbabweans – or a third of the population – are in need of food aid doesn’t trump the reelection of an incumbent.  I’m glad to live in America.  We have our demons but none like this!)

I do wish I found some more ‘good’ and ‘happy’ events for this date to report — unfortunately those are usually not noteworthy or newsworthy. 

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