august 16

Christmas Countdown

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[For the next 15 days, I will be posting pictures of local Christmas stuff as Christmas Day draws near. If anyone wants to participate in their own Christmas Countdown and post local stuff from their area, hit me up with a link back. ~Vic]

Our residents and business owners are participating in a Gingerbread House competition. They are re-creating some of the historic homes and historic buildings. At some point, someone will be doing a re-creation of the Occaneechee Speedway (part of the birth of NASCAR).

There are two categories and you can vote for one favorite in each category:
Homes for the Holidays 2020

Midlawn Webb-Patterson Gingerbread House Image One
Youth/Family Category
12-05-2020
Click for a larger view.
Midlawn Webb-Patterson House Image Two
The Real Midlawn/Webb-Patterson House
1881
08-16-2020
Click for a larger view.

Elvis & Aretha

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Gone on the same day, 41 years apart. I was two weeks shy of my 11th birthday when Elvis died. I am two weeks shy of my 52 birthday. Two incredibly beautiful, powerful voices and souls are gone.

May they rock heaven. ~Vic

Throwback Thursday: Klondike Gold Rush 1896

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Klondike Gold Rush Image
Photo Credit: history.com

Klondike Rush Routes Image
Photo Credit: wikimedia.org

GOLD! It’s in them, there hills! August 16, 1896, gold was discovered in Dawson City, Bonanza Creek, Klondike River, Yukon, Canada. George Carmack, his wife Kate, her brother ‘Skookum’ Jim Mason (Keish) and Dawson (Tagish) Charlie began looking for gold on one of the river’s tributaries. History is still unclear on ‘who’ actually made the discovery but, George Carmack is generally referred to as the claim maker.

After the panics of 1893 and 1896, economic depression, inflation and unemployment were rampant. The Coinage Act of 1873 had destroyed the use of silver dollar coins, dropping the price of silver and ending bi-metallism. This prompted many to dash to the area in search of gold, leaving behind other jobs in a quest for adventure and financial security. Even author Jack London headed north for his fair share and many of his novels were born out of his experiences. Pacific port towns reaped the benefits of the traders and travelers, desperate to survive the economic downturn.

Very few walked away from Dawson City rich. George and Kate split and, George remarried, living fairly well on his earnings. Skookum Jim, though wealthy, continued to prospect until his death. Dawson Charlie spent money and drank too much, dying in an alcohol related accident. Most of the businessmen and miners died penniless. The damage to the area from the mining was extensive and, the Native people suffered from contaminated water and disease.

Although this song is based on a John Wayne movie, and the George mentioned isn’t the same George in history, it’s still apropos…and, a great song. It’s sad, though, that Johnny Horton died shortly before its release.

National Airborne Day

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National Day Calendar Photo

August 16 has four celebrations. National Airborne Day was created by President George ‘W’ Bush in 2001.

29th Infantry Regiment Photo
Photo Credit: wikimedia.org

On August 16, 1940, a “Test” Platoon led by Major William Lee and consisting of 48 volunteers of the U.S. 29th Infantry Regiment at Fort Benning, GA, made the first U.S. Army parachute jump from an aircraft in order to explore its applications in battle:

During the time between the World Wars, the 29th Infantry Regiment trained infantry soldiers and leaders, demonstrated tactics and tested innovations in Infantry warfare at Fort Benning including providing soldiers for the first parachute unit in the U.S. armed forces.

503rd Infantry Regiment Photo
Photo Credit: wikimedia.org

The first combat jump was in November 1942 when members of the 2nd Battalion, 503rd Parachute Infantry Regiment, leapt from a C-47 into North Africa.
 
 

Also celebrated:
National Tell A Joke Day (HA!)
National Roller Coaster Day (Weeeee!)
National Rum Day (OMG, YUM)

So, let’s all have a rum drink, ride a roller coaster, tell a joke and cheer on our Airborne folks! Enjoy, everyone!