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Jul 19 2012

On This Day In History July 19

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

July 19 is the 200th day of the year (201st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 165 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1848, a two-day Women’s Rights Convention opens in Seneca Falls, New York. There the “Bloomers” are introduced.

The Seneca Falls Convention was an early and influential women’s rights convention held in Seneca Falls, New York, July 19-20, 1848. It was organized by local New York women upon the occasion of a visit by Boston-based Lucretia Mott, a Quaker famous for her speaking ability, a skill rarely cultivated by American women at the time. The local women, primarily members of a radical Quaker group, organized the meeting along with Elizabeth Cady Stanton, a skeptical non-Quaker who followed logic more than religion.

The meeting spanned two days and six sessions, and included a lecture on law, a humorous presentation, and multiple discussions about the role of women in society. Stanton and the Quaker women presented two prepared documents, the Declaration of Sentiments and an accompanying list of resolutions, to be debated and modified before being put forward for signatures. A heated debate sprang up regarding women’s right to vote, with many including Mott urging the removal of this concept, but Frederick Douglass argued eloquently for its inclusion, and the suffrage resolution was retained. Exactly 100 of approximately 300 attendees signed the document, mostly women.

The convention was seen by some of its contemporaries, including featured speaker Mott, as but a single step in the continuing effort by women to gain for themselves a greater proportion of social, civil and moral rights, but it was viewed by others as a revolutionary beginning to the struggle by women for complete equality with men. Afterward, Stanton presented the resulting Declaration of Sentiments as a foundational document in the American woman’s suffrage movement, and she promoted the event as the first time that women and men gathered together to demand the right for women to vote. Stanton’s authoring of the History of Woman Suffrage helped to establish the Seneca Falls Convention as the moment when the push for women’s suffrage first gained national prominence. By 1851, at the second National Women’s Rights Convention in Worcester, Massachusetts, the issue of women’s right to vote had become a central tenet of the women’s rights movement.

 64 – Great Fire of Rome: a fire begins to burn in the merchant area of Rome and soon burns completely out of control. According to a popular, but untrue legend, Nero fiddled as the city burned.

711 – Umayyad conquest of Hispania: Battle of Guadalete – Umayyad forces under Tariq ibn Ziyad defeat the Visigoths led by King Roderic.

1333 – Wars of Scottish Independence: Battle of Halidon Hill – The English win a decisive victory over the Scots.

1544 – Italian War of 1542: the first Siege of Boulogne begins.

1545 – The Tudor warship Mary Rose sinks off Portsmouth; in 1982 the wreck is salvaged in one of the most complex and expensive projects in the history of maritime archaeology.

1553 – Lady Jane Grey is replaced by Mary I of England as Queen of England after only nine days of reign.

1588 – Anglo-Spanish War: Battle of Gravelines – The Spanish Armada is sighted in the English Channel.

1701 – Representatives of the Iroquois Confederacy sign the Nanfan Treaty, ceding a large territory north of the Ohio River to England.

1702 – Great Northern War: A numerically superior Polish-Saxon army of Augustus II the Strong, operating from an advantageous defensive position, is defeated by a Swedish army half its size under the command of King Charles XII in the Battle of Klissow.

1832 – The British Medical Association is founded as the Provincial Medical and Surgical Association by Sir Charles Hastings at a meeting in the Board Room of the Worcester Infirmary.

1843 – Brunel’s steamship the SS Great Britain is launched, becoming the first ocean-going craft with an iron hull or screw propeller and also becoming the largest vessel afloat in the world.

1848 – Women’s rights: a two-day Women’s Rights Convention opens in Seneca Falls, New York; there the “Bloomers” are introduced.

1863 – American Civil War: Morgan’s Raid – At Buffington Island in Ohio, Confederate General John Hunt Morgan’s raid into the north is mostly thwarted when a large group of his men are captured while trying to escape across the Ohio River.

1864 – Taiping Rebellion: Third Battle of Nanking – The Qing Dynasty finally defeats the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom.

1870 – Franco-Prussian War: France declares war on Prussia.

1900 – The first line of the Paris Métro opens for operation.

1908 – Dutch football club Feyenoord was founded

1916 – World War I: Battle of Fromelles – British and Australian troops attack German trenches in a prelude to the Battle of the Somme.

1919 – Following Peace Day celebrations marking the end of World War I, ex-servicemen riot and burn down Luton Town Hall.

1940 – World War II: Battle of Cape Spada – The Royal Navy and the Regia Marina clash; the Italian light cruiser Bartolomeo Colleoni sinks, with 121 casualties.

1940 – World War II: Army order 112 forms the Intelligence Corps of the British Army.

1942 – World War II: Battle of the Atlantic – German Grand Admiral Karl Donitz orders the last U-boats to withdraw from their United States Atlantic coast positions in response to the effective American convoy system.

1947 – The Prime Minister of the shadow Burmese government, Bogyoke Aung San and 6 of his cabinet and 2 non-cabinet members are assassinated by Galon U Saw.

1947 – Korean politician Yuh Woon-Hyung is assassinated.

1961 – Tunisia imposes a blockade on the French naval base at Bizerte; the French would capture the entire town four days later.

1963 – Joe Walker flies a North American X-15 to a record altitude of 106,010 metres (347,800 feet) on X-15 Flight 90. Exceeding an altitude of 100 km, this flight qualifies as a human spaceflight under international convention.

1964 – Vietnam War: at a rally in Saigon, South Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Khanh calls for expanding the war into North Vietnam.

1972 – Dhofar Rebellion: British SAS units help the Omani government against Popular Front for the Liberation of Oman rebels in the Battle of Mirbat.

1976 – Sagarmatha National Park in Nepal is created.

1979 – The Sandinista rebels overthrow the government of the Somoza family in Nicaragua.

1981 – In a private meeting with U.S. President Ronald Reagan, French Prime Minister François Mitterrand reveals the existence of the Farewell Dossier, a collection of documents showing that the Soviets had been stealing American technological research and development.

1983 – The first three-dimensional reconstruction of a human head in a CT is published.

1985 – The Val di Stava dam collapses killing 268 people in Val di Stava, Italy.

1989 – United Airlines flight 232 crashes in Sioux City, Iowa killing 112 of the 296 passengers.

1992 – Anti-Mafia Judge Paolo Borsellino is killed by a Mafia car bomb in Palermo, Italy together with five police officers.

1997 – The Troubles: The Provisional Irish Republican Army resumes a ceasefire to end their 25-year campaign to end British rule in Northern Ireland.

Holidays and observances

   *Burmese Martyrs’ Day (Burma)

   * Christian Feast Day:

       * Arsenius (Roman Catholic Church)

       * Bernold, Bishop of Utrecht

       * Justa and Rufina

       * Kirdjun

       * Macrina the Younger, Sister of St. Basil the Great

       * Symmachus

       * July 19 (Eastern Orthodox liturgics)

   * Sandinista Day or Liberation Day (Nicaragua)