Monday, May 23, 2011

On this day in history-- 5/23/2011

1430 -- Jeanne d'Arc (Joan of Arc) was captured by the Burgundians, who sold her to the English.

1934 -- bank robbers Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow were shot to death in a police ambush as they were driving a stolen Ford Deluxe along a road in Bienville Parish, Louisiana.

There is a lot that happened today in history. Namely, one of Henry VIII's divorces (he divorced Catharine of Aragon in 1533), South Carolina became the 8th state to ratify the US Constitution in 1788, Canada invented their Mounties ( Official name being the North West Mounted Police) in 1873, Italy declared war on Austria-Hungary in 1915, Rockefeller died in 1937, and Heinrich Himmler committed suicide in imprisonment in Germany in 1945.

Hmm... Since the first fact listed is one about Joan of Arc... I could write up a spotlight on the 100 years' war. Would anyone be interested?

On this day in history-- 5/22/2011

A day late... I need to be more vigilant with this.

1861 -- In what is generally regarded as the first Union combat fatality of the Civil War, Private Thornsbury Bailey Brown was shot and killed by a Confederate soldier at Fetterman Bridge in present-day West Virginia.

1990 -- The Yemen rebublic split into North Yemen and South Yemen.

Another interesting fact-- Sir Arthur Canon Doyle was born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1859 on this day. He was the writer of the Sherlock Holmes series.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

On this day in history-- 5/21/2011

Welp. Posting this a little late because I've been busy all day, but here we go.

1927 -- Charles Lindbergh landed his Spirit of St. Louis in Paris. This was the first successful solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean.

1956 -- The United States exploded the first airborne hydrogen bomb over Bikini Atoll in the Pacific.

Friday, May 20, 2011

On this day in history-- 5/20/2011

There's a ridiculously long list of what's happened on the 20th of May in history, so let's go with two major facts and a small history post for each. I think it'd be more interesting than a list of briefly mentioned things that happened on this day.

1961 -- astronaut Alan B. Shepard Jr. became America's first space traveler. He made a 15-minute suborbital ballistic flight in a capsule launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The space craft was called Freedom 7, launched by a Redstone vehicle. He went 116 statute miles into the air and landed 302 statute miles down the Atlantic Missile Range.

1985 -- President Ronald Reagan attended a wreath-laying ceremony at a military cemetery in Bitburg, West Germany. The visit drew worldwide condemnation because 49 members of the Waffen SS were buried there. For those of you who don't know, the Waffen SS was the armed wing of the Schutzstaffel, or Protective Squadron. They were one of the largest sections of the Nazi forces.

Another little fact that's interesting, is that Karl Marx was born in Prussia in 1818, and Napoleon Bonaparte died in exile on the island of St. Helena in 1821.

Last night was my graduation from college.

And so, I figured I'd post something about the history of the graduation ceremony.

The style of caps, gowns and hoods worn during graduation and other such honorary academic functions dates back to the middle ages. Monks and students originally wore the garbs to keep warm in the damp, drafty chambers of the castles and halls where academia-- learning-- took place.

The gowns for the bachelor's degree have long, pointed sleeves and are designed to be worn closed.

A master's degree has a gown with oblong sleeves, open at the wrist. The sleeve base hangs down and the rear part of its oblong shape is square-cut. The gown is worn closed.

An older master's gown is always worn open, with a sleeve that is square and closed at the end, and has a slit near the elbow which permits the forearm to come through.

Gowns of the doctoral degree may be open or closed. They have broad velvet patches down the front, and thee velvet bars on the round, open sleeves. The velvet trimming may be either black or the colour distinctive of the field of learning to which the degree pertains. For doctoral degrees only, the cap is made out of velvet, and a tassel with a gold bullion.

Academic gowns are traditionally black. It's only recent that institutions have been allowed to have the alumni wear institution colors.

Caps are usually made out of broadcloth or serge, with a black tassel or one appropriate for the degree distinction.

Hoods are the true distinction, however. A black shell, varying in size for the three degrees and material to match the gown, it is silk-lined with the colour(s) of the institution conferring the degree. The hoods for bachelor's and master's degrees are the same shape, where a doctoral degree is larger and cut in a different style-- having a flat panel in the back. The hood is usually bordered with velvet of the proper width to indicate the degree, and of the colour signifying the field of learning to which the degree pertains.

Maize, a dull pinkish colour, is used to indicate agriculture.
Arts, letters and humanities are indicated by the colour white. 
Commerce, Accounting and Business are usually shown by a drab colour. An off white.
Dentistry is lilac.
Economics is copper.
Education is light blue.
Engineering is orange.
Fine arts and architecture is brown.
Forestry is russet.
Home economics is maroon.
Journalism is crimson.
Law is purple.
Library science is lemon yellow.
Medicine is green.
Music is pink.
Nursing is apricot.
Oratory or speech is silver.
Pharmaceuticals is olive green.
Philosophy is dark blue.
Physical Education is sage.
Public Administration is peacock blue.
Public Health is salmon.
Science is gold.
Social work is citron.
Theology is scarlet.
Veterinary science is gray.                

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

So this is the start.


I see you've stumbled upon my blog. This is the first post, used as an introduction. Simply put, I am using this blog to post about history, historical facts and whatnot.

I aim to post at least once a day with an On This Day... post. But, every so often, a special area or topic will be posted about. The special areas will mainly focus around Western Europe and the Americas as this is my area of expertise, but if anyone has any questions about another area or a suggestion for a place to post historical facts about, I'm all up for researching!

You provide questions, and I'll provide historical facts!

Hopefully this can come off of the ground. I look forward to answering questions and sharing information!

So long for now.