History

May 3 has been designated as World Press Freedom Day in recognition of a "free, pluralistic and independent press" and its essential part of a democratic society. Indeed, the purpose of journalism, said Chicago newspaper columnist and humorist Peter Finley Dunne in the early 1900s, is to "comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable."  And in the words of President Barack Obama: "Journalists give all of us as citizens the chance to know the truth about our countries, ourselves, our governments. That makes us better, it makes us stronger, it gives voice to the voiceless,  it exposes injustice, and holds leaders like me accountable."

May 1, 1960.  An American U-2 spy plane piloted by Francis Gary Powers was shot down over Central Russia. Powers was tried, convicted and sentenced to 10 years in prison, but was released in exchange for an imprisoned Soviet spy.

May 2, 2011.  Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. Special Forces during a raid on his secret compound in Pakistan.

May 4, 1886.  The Haymarket Square Riot occurred in Chicago after 180 police officers advanced on 1,300 persons gathered in the square listening to speeches of labor activists and anarchists. An incendiary device  thrown by an unknown person caused police to open fire and led to the death of several people, including eight policemen.

Please join the Canton Seniors Book Discussion group on Thursday, May 25 from 2:00PM-3:00PM in the Friends Activity Room when we discuss BLACK DIAMONDS: THE DOWNFALL OF AN ARISTOCRATIC DYNASTY... Copies of the book will be available on April  28.

Also available in: audiobook | e-audiobook

"From the New York Times bestselling author of The Secret Rooms, the extraordinary true story of the downfall of one of England's wealthiest families. Fans of Downton Abbey now have a go-to resource for fascinating, real-life stories of the spectacular lives led by England's aristocrats. With the novelistic flair and knack for historical detail Catherine Bailey displayed in her New York Times bestseller The Secret Rooms, Black Diamonds provides a page-turning chronicle of the Fitzwilliam coal-mining dynasty and their breathtaking Wentworth estate, the largest private home in England. When the sixth Earl Fitzwilliam died in 1902, he left behind the second largest estate in twentieth-century England, valued at more than [ ] billion of today's money--a lifeline to the tens of thousands of people who worked either in the family's coal mines or on their expansive estate. The earl also left behind four sons, and the family line seemed assured. But was it? As Bailey retraces the Fitzwilliam family history, she uncovers a legacy riddled with bitter feuds, scandals (including Peter Fitzwilliam's ill-fated affair with American heiress Kick Kennedy), and civil unrest as the conflict between the coal industry and its miners came to a head. Once again, Bailey has written an irresistible and brilliant narrative history"--.

Just a few decades ago, the Koreans were an impoverished, agricultural people. In one generation they moved from the fields to Silicon Valley. The nature and values of the Korean people provide the background for a more detailed examination of the complex history of the country, in particular its division and its emergence as an economic superpower.

A young writer's sincere search (with his dog) for an authentic life--buying a ruined house in Detroit for $500, fixing it up nail by nail, and, in the process, participating in the grassroots rebirth of the city itself.

Friedman (coauthor of That Used to Be Us), a three-time Pulitzer Prize winner for his work as a reporter with the New York Times, engages in an intelligent discussion of the faster paces of change in technology, globalization, and climate around the world. His core argument is that "simultaneous accelerations in the Market, Mother Nature and Moore's law" (the principle that the power of microchips doubles every two years) constitute an "Age of Accelerations," in which people who feel "fearful or unmoored" must "pause and reflect" rather than panic.

"A former police academy classmate and protégé asks Tracy to help solve a cold case that involves the suspicious suicide of a Native American high school girl forty years earlier. But as Tracy probes one small town's memory and finds dark, well-concealed secrets hidden within the community's fabric, her own life may be endangered"--.

Today, people worry that they're going to run out of money in their older age. That won't happen if you use a few tricks for squeezing higher payments from your assets-- from your Social Security account (find the hidden values there), pension (monthly income or lump sum?), home equity (sell and invest the proceeds or take a reverse mortgage?), savings (should you buy a lifetime annuity?), and retirement accounts (how to invest and-- critically-- how much to withdraw from your savings each year?). The right moves will not only raise the amount you have to spend, they'll stretch out your money over many more years. You will also learn to look at your savings and investments in a new way. If you stick with super-safe choices the money might not last. You need safe money to help pay the bills in your early retirement years. But to ensure that you'll still have spending money 10 and 20 years from now, you have to invest for growth, today. Quinn shows you how. At a time when people are living longer, yet retiring with a smaller pot of savings than they'd hoped for, this book will become the essential guide.

April 6, 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of America's entry into World War I on the side of the Allies. More than 2 million American soldiers served before the war's end on November 11, 1918.

Boston's massacre by Eric Hinderaker

On the night of March 5, 1770, British soldiers fired into a crowd gathered in front of Boston's Custom House, killing five people. Denounced as an act of unprovoked violence and villainy, the event that came to be known as the Boston Massacre is one of the most familiar incidents in American history, yet one of the least understood. Eric Hinderaker revisits this dramatic episode, examining in forensic detail the facts of that fateful night, the competing narratives that molded public perceptions at the time, and the long campaign afterward to transform the tragedy into a touchstone of American identity.

A riveting history of the month that transformed the world's greatest nations as Russia faced revolution and America entered World War I.

April 2, 1513.  Spanish explorer Ponce De Leon sighted Florida and claimed it for Spain. His landing site is now present day St. Augustine -  the oldest city in the continental United States.

April 2, 1792.  Congress established the first U.S. Mint in the city of Philadelphia.

April 3, 1860.  The Pony Express service began as the first rider departed St. Joseph, Missouri. Letters were delivered 2,000 miles to California within ten days, with each rider traveling 75 to 100 miles before handing off  to the next. After less than two years the service became obsolete with the completion of the overland telegraph.

An engrossing account of America's pivotal, still controversial, intervention into WWI, encompassing the prelude to war, its conduct abroad and at home, and its aftermath; and including the tumultuous politics and seismic shifts of the era and the towering personalities of the day.

Award-winning author Mark Kurlansky presents an insider's view of Havana: the elegant, tattered city he has come to know over more than thirty years.

 

While celebrating St. Patrick's Day let us remember the history and contributions of not only the Irish, but of all of the immigrants who have made this country great -  both in the past and in the present.

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