Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Grace and Beauty -- July 17, 2019

Scott Joplin, James Scott and Joseph Lamb were the three most important composers of classic ragtime. James Scott went to St Louis to meet his hero, Scott Joplin. John Stark published "Grace and Beauty -- A Classy Rag" in 1909.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Entire Crew Lost When British Dirigible Burns -- July 15, 2019

Lake County, Indiana Times, 18-July-1919
100 years ago today, on 15-July-1919, Royal Air Force blimp NS-11 burned and fell into the sea near Norfolk.  All hands were lost.  


The British non-rigid dirigible NS-11 recently went down in flames off Norfolk, England, and not a single member of the crew of twelve could be found. It is believed the dirigible was struck by lightning. Persons on shore heard two explosions. The ship had left Pelham, where the R-34 is quartered, to help a mine sweeper. During the war the NS-11 spotted submarines and mines. At one time it flew 1,000 miles over the North sea in 40 1/2 hours without a stop.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Happy Bastille Day, 2019 -- July 14, 2019

Memphis News-Scimitar, 14-July-1919
On Bastille Day in 1919, the French and their allies celebrated with a huge victory parade.  


PARIS, July 14. (By the Associated Press.) -- The triumphal march of allied and American troops through Paris began at 8 o'clock this morning. The weather was brilliant, being more like October than midsummer.

A thousand wounded soldiers with crutches or in wheel chairs and clad, for the most part, in civilian clothes, led the parade, being preceded by a drum corps.

Guns began firing at minute Intervals as President Poincare placed a wreath at the foot of the Cenotaph at the Arc de Triomphe this morning. The empty casket, placed there in memory of the allied dead, was also decorated by other wreaths, these being placed by Premier Clemenceau, a French soldier, a French sailor, an Alsatian girl, a girl from Lorraine and Col. Edmund Gros. This last wreath was in memory of 72 members of the Lafayette escadrille who lost their lives during the war.

Marshal Joffre, the victor of the first battle of the Marne, passed under the Arc de Triomphe at 8:45 o'clock. He rode alone. Behind him came Marshal Foch, the commander-in-chief of the allied forces during the final campaign of the conflict. A storm of applause arose from the vast throng as the two marshals passed the president's stand and moved down the brilliant avenue.

Gen. Pershing, with a number of American generals, came next in line and was received with equal enthusiasm. Forty American organizations, soldiers and marines, marching with wonderful precision, were greeted by a sea of waving handkerchiefs and flags and with deafening cheers. During the parade this morning the roof of a house on the Boulevard St. Martin collapsed. Eighteen persons were injured.

Washington Evening Star, 14-July-1919

Saturday, July 13, 2019

That's One Smart Pup -- July 13, 2019

Philadelphia Evening Public Ledger, 28-July-1919
I love Fontaine Fox's The Toonerville Trolley That Meets All the Trains.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Comic Book -- Mad Magazine, RIP -- July 11, 2019
I was devastated to learn that Mad Magazine is going to cease publication.

The October-November 1952 issue of Mad, published in August, was the beginning of a great American tradition. EC, famous up to that time for horror comics, moved in a new direction. Published by Bill Gaines and edited by Harvey Kurtzman, Mad introduced sharp satire (Humor in a Jugular Vein) to comic books.

Mad became a magazine in 1955. Legend said it was because of the growing controversy about comic books, but it was done to satisfy Kurtzman's ambition.

I read Mad for many years and it certainly influenced my sense of humor. I know some movies better through reading the Mad parodies rather than seeing the movies themselves.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Jean Navarre Falls to Death Close to Paris -- July 10, 2019

Corpus Christi Caller, 11-July-1919
100 years ago today, on 10-July-1919, pioneering French ace Jean Navarre, who had survived four years of flying during the war, died in a crash as he rehearsed his plan to defy orders, buzz the Victory Parade on Bastille Day and  fly under the Eiffel Tower. The story after the newspaper article explains some of his "eccentric escapades."  

Airplane Crashes to Ground
in Attempt to Avoid
Collision in Air

By the Associated Press.
PARIS, July 10 -- Sub-Lieutenant Jean Navarre who was one of the first aces among the French aviators during the war and who was withdrawn from the service because of his eccentric escapades, fell while flying in the vicinity of Versailles this afternoon and died soon after in a military hospital.

He was to land at the airdrome at Villacoublay, when, in trying to avoid a collision with other machines, his airplane crashed.

Navarre was officially credited with bringing down 12 enemy airplanes, although the Paris newspapers, during the latter part of his service in the French aviation corps, credited him with the destruction of 19 enemy machines.

He was awarded several decorations by the French government for his exploits in action against enemy aviators. In April 1917, after his retirement from the service, he was arrested and placed in a military prison charged with having run down several policemen of Paris with his automobile. After his release, it was reported that he intended to go to the United States as an instructor in aviation.

Flying, November, 1917

Tuesday, July 9, 2019