On June 25th, 1876, Native American forces led by Chiefs Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull defeated the U.S. Army troops of Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer in a bloody battle near southern Montana’s Little Bighorn River. The Battle of Little Bighorn–also called Custer’s Last Stand –marked the most decisive Native American victory and the worst U.S. Army defeat in the long Plains Indian War. While complicated, the generally accepted reason for the battle is that the discovery of gold in South Dakota’s Black Hills in 1875 led to the U.S. government disregarding previous treaty agreements. The gruesome fate of Custer and his men outraged many white Americans and confirmed their image of the Indians as wild and bloodthirsty. Meanwhile, the U.S. government increased its efforts to subdue the tribes. Within five years, almost all of the Sioux and Cheyenne would be confined to reservations. – HJL
June 24th the birthday of rifle-toting abolitionist pastor Henry Ward Beecher. (Born 1813, died March 8, 1887.) He and his adherents from his church smuggled so many Sharps rifles to Bleeding Kansas that the Sharps rifles picked up the nickname Beecher’s Bibles. Wikipedia states: Several of his brothers and sisters became well-known educators and activists, most notably Harriet Beecher Stowe, who achieved worldwide fame with her abolitionist novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
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I heard that fellow blogger Commander Zero just had an emergency appendectomy. (His appendix burst.) Please pray for a full, rapid recovery. Some details can be found at his Notes From The Bunker blog. – JWR
On July 23, 1942, The Nazis continued their reprehensible and criminal behavior by making the first selections for the gas chamber at Auschwitz on a train of Jews from Paris.
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If you’ve been thinking about getting into Ham Radio for emergency communications, this is a good weekend to start. The Annual Field Day starts Saturday and many clubs will set up stations at public parks and locations. Sometimes they even feed the visitors! Check your local paper as most will run a classified ad or have a small write up. Learn, make friends, and most of all, have fun!
During World War II, the U.S. 10th Army overcame the last major pockets of Japanese resistance on Okinawa Island on June 22nd, 1945, ending one of the bloodiest battles of World War II. The same day, Japanese Lieutenant General Mitsuru Ushijima, the commander of Okinawa’s defense, committed suicide with a number of Japanese officers and troops rather than surrender.
June 21st is the birthday of Rex Applegate (June 21, 1914 – July 14, 1998), author of Kill or Be Killed. He was the friend and mentor of SurvivalBlog’s Senior Field Gear Editor, Pat Cascio.
Today is the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere. Whomever it was who came up with the phrase “The lazy days of summer” obviously didn’t live on a self-sufficient homestead. We are very busy at this time of year. – JWR
June 20th is the birthday of Audie L. Murphy, born in 1925. (He died in a plane crash on May 28, 1971.) This is also the anniversary of the death of novelist Vince Flynn (born April 6, 1966, died June 19, 2013). His death at age 47 was a loss to the literary world.
June 19, 1834 was the birthday of Charles Haddon (C.H.) Spurgeon, who died 31 January 1892. He was a British Particular Baptist preacher. His sermons are still widely read, for good reason.
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Summer is a great time to finish writing that article you have been planning on for SurvivalBlog. We are in Round 71 and there are nearly $11,000 worth of prizes on the line so get cracking and get it submitted!
June 18th is birthday of Pastor Douglas Wilson. Born in 1953, he is the pastor at Christ Church in Moscow, Idaho and a prodigious author on Reformed theology.
June 17th is the birthday of musician Red Foley (born, 1910, died September 19, 1968). His patriotic song Smoke on the Water topped the music charts for 13 weeks in late 1944 and early 1945, and charted for 24 weeks. This song, which describes the doom of tyrants, would be considered quite politically incorrect these days.
June 17th is also the birthday of novelist John Ross, who was born in 1957.
Today is the birthday of John Enoch Powell (born 1912, died 8 February 1998). He was one of the very few military men to rise from enlisted Private to Brigadier General. Similarly, in the U.S. military, Nathan Bedford Forrest enlisted as a Private and advanced to the rank of Lieutenant General of the Confederate Army during the U.S. Civil War. (His postwar career was, ahem, less distinguished.) Chesty Puller did the same in the U.S. Marine Corps. Likewise, U.S. Army General Tommy Franks began his Army career as a Private in 1965 and went on to eventually wear four stars, as did Admiral Jeremy Michael Borda, advancing from USN E-1 to USN O-10 (from Seaman to Admiral and Chief of Naval Operations). There have been a few such examples but not very many. (Special thanks to SurvivalBlog reader George S. for mentioning this birth date … Continue reading
Following a revolt by the English nobility against his rule, King John put his royal seal on the Magna Carta, or “Great Charter” on this day in 1215 AD. This document, essentially a peace treaty between John and his barons, guaranteed that the king would respect feudal rights and privileges, uphold the freedom of the church, and maintain the nation’s laws. Although it was more a reactionary than a progressive document, the Magna Carta was seen as a cornerstone in the development of democratic England by later generations.
During the American Revolution, the Continental Congress adopted a resolution on June 14th, 1777, stating that “the flag of the United States be thirteen alternate stripes red and white” and that “the Union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation.” The national flag, which became known as the “Stars and Stripes,” was based on the “Grand Union” flag– a banner carried by the Continental Army in 1776 that also consisted of 13 red and white stripes.
On Jun 13, 1983, after more than a decade in space, Pioneer 10– the world’s first outer-planetary probe– left the solar system. The next day, it radioed back its first scientific data on interstellar space.
On June 12, 1987, during a visit to the divided German city of Berlin, President Ronald Reagan publicly challenged Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev to “tear down this wall”.
On June 11, 1979, Marion Morrison (better known as John Wayne) died at age 72 after losing a battle to cancer. John Wayne was an iconic American film actor known for his conservative political views. His trademark drawl and good looks ensure that he will be remembered. Appearing in over 250 films helps that as well. My favorite films of his were Fort Apache, The Quiet Man, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, The Alamo, The Green Berets, and, of course, True Grit (1969).
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I just heard that Adam West (of Batman fame) passed away, at age 88. It is sad to say “Adios” to one of the Good Guys. Since he was born in Walla … Continue reading