This is your morning Open Thread. Pour a cup of your favorite morning beverage and review the past and comment on the future.
August 22 is the 234th day of the year (235th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 131 days remaining until the end of the year.
on this day in 1950, Althea Gibson became the first African American on the US Tennis Tour.
On this day in 1950, officials of the United States Lawn Tennis Association (USLTA) accept Althea Gibson into their annual championship at Forest Hills, New York, making her the first African-American player to compete in a U.S. national tennis competition.
Growing up in Harlem, the young Gibson was a natural athlete. She started playing tennis at the age of 14 and the very next year won her first tournament, the New York State girls’ championship, sponsored by the American Tennis Association (ATA), which was organized in 1916 by black players as an alternative to the exclusively white USLTA. After prominent doctors and tennis enthusiasts Hubert Eaton and R. Walter Johnson took Gibson under their wing, she won her first of what would be 10 straight ATA championships in 1947.
In 1949, Gibson attempted to gain entry into the USLTA’s National Grass Court Championships at Forest Hills, the precursor of the U.S. Open. When the USLTA failed to invite her to any qualifying tournaments, Alice Marble–a four-time winner at Forest Hills–wrote a letter on Gibson’s behalf to the editor of American Lawn Tennis magazine. Marble criticized the “bigotry” of her fellow USLTA members, suggesting that if Gibson posed a challenge to current tour players, “it’s only fair that they meet this challenge on the courts.” Gibson was subsequently invited to participate in a New Jersey qualifying event, where she earned a berth at Forest Hills.
Though she once brushed off comparisons to Jackie Robinson, the trailblazing black baseball player, Gibson has been credited with paving the way for African-American tennis champions such as Arthur Ashe and, more recently, Venus and Serena Williams. After a long illness, she died in 2003 at the age of 76.
Ms. Gibson became the first African American woman to join the Ladies Professional Golf Association tour, in 1963, retiring in 1978.
392 – Arbogast has Eugenius elected Western Roman Emperor.
565 – St. Columba reports seeing a monster in Loch Ness, Scotland.
851 – Erispoe defeats Charles the Bald near the Breton town of Jengland.
1138 – Battle of the Standard between Scotland and England.
1485 – The Battle of Bosworth Field, the death of Richard III and the end of the House of Plantagenet.
1559 – Bartolome Carranza, Spanish archbishop, is arrested for heresy.
1642 – Charles I calls the English Parliament traitors. The English Civil War begins.
1654 – Jacob Barsimson arrives in New Amsterdam. He is the first known Jewish immigrant to America.
1717 – Spanish troops land on Sardinia.
1770 – James Cook’s expedition lands on the east coast of Australia.
1780 – James Cook’s ship HMS Resolution returns to England (Cook having been killed on Hawaii during the voyage).
1791 – Beginning of the Haitian Slave Revolution in Saint-Domingue.
1798 – French troops land in Kilcummin harbour, County Mayo, Ireland to aid Wolfe Tone’s United Irishmen’s Irish Rebellion.
1827 – Jose de La Mar becomes President of Peru.
1831 – Nat Turner’s slave rebellion commences just after midnight in Southampton, Virginia, leading to the deaths of more than 50 whites and several hundred African Americans who are killed in retaliation for the uprising.
1848 – The United States annexes New Mexico.
1849 – The first air raid in history. Austria launches pilotless balloons against the Italian city of Venice.
1851 – The first America’s Cup is won by the yacht America.
1875 – The Treaty of Saint Petersburg between Japan and Russia is ratified, providing for the exchange of Sakhalin for the Kuril Islands.
1864 – Twelve nations sign the First Geneva Convention. The Red Cross is formed.
1901 – Cadillac Motor Company is founded
1902 – Theodore Roosevelt becomes the first President of the United States to ride in an automobile.
1914 – World War I: in Belgium, British and German troops clash for the first time in the war.
1922 – Michael Collins, Commander-in-Chief of the Irish Free State Army is shot dead during an Anti-Treaty ambush at Beal na mBlath, County Cork, during the Irish Civil War.
1926 – Gold is discovered in Johannesburg, South Africa.
1932 – The BBC first experiments with television broadcasting. (See also Timeline of the BBC.)
1941 – World War II: German troops reach Leningrad, leading to the siege of Leningrad.
1942 – World War II: Brazil declares war on Germany and Italy.
1944 – World War II: Romania is captured by the Soviet Union.
1949 – Queen Charlotte earthquake: Canada’s largest earthquake since the 1700 Cascadia earthquake
1950 – Althea Gibson becomes the first black competitor in international tennis.
1952 – The penal colony on Devil’s Island is permanently closed.
1962 – An attempt to assassinate French president Charles de Gaulle fails.
1962 – The NS Savannah, the world’s first nuclear-powered cargo ship, completes its maiden voyage.
1963 – Joe Walker in an X-15 test plane reaches an altitude of 106 km (66 mi).
1966 – Labor movements NFWA and AWOC merge to become the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee (UFWOC), predecessor of the United Farm Workers.
1968 – Pope Paul VI arrives in Bogotá, Colombia. It is the first visit of a pope to Latin America.
1972 – Rhodesia is expelled by the IOC for its racist policies.
1978 – The Frente Sandinista de Liberacion or FSLN occupies national palace in Nicaragua.
1989 – The first ring of Neptune is discovered.
1989 – Nolan Ryan strikes out Rickey Henderson to become the first Major League Baseball pitcher to record 5,000 strikeouts.
1992 – FBI HRT sniper Lon Horiuchi shoots and kills Vicki Weaver during an 11-day siege at her home at Ruby Ridge, Idaho.
1996 – Bill Clinton signs welfare reform into law, representing major shift in US welfare policy
2003 – Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore is suspended after refusing to comply with a federal court order to remove a rock inscribed with the Ten Commandments from the lobby of the Alabama Supreme Court building.
2004 – A version of The Scream and Madonna, two paintings by Edvard Munch, are stolen at gunpoint from a museum in Oslo, Norway.
2006 – Pulkovo Aviation Enterprise Flight 612 crashes near the Russian border over eastern Ukraine, killing all 170 people on board.
2007 – The Texas Rangers rout the Baltimore Orioles 30-3, the most runs scored by a team in modern MLB history.
2007 – The Storm botnet, a botnet created by the Storm Worm, sends out a record 57 million e-mails in one day