Life Day 25043: Going Postal

February 4, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning addressers and addresees. Today is February 4th. The first “holiday” today is Thank a Mailman Day. The Second Continental Congress established the Constitutional Post—the first organized mail service in America, in 1775. Before this act, people relied on friends, merchants, or private messengers to carry their letters. It was an unreliable system, and colonial British postal inspectors often intercepted confidential messages.
As the nation’s first Postmaster General, Benjamin Franklin established many of the conventions we are accustomed to today, including a standardized rate chart based on weight and distance. Before the invention of the stamp in 1847, the writer could pay the postage in advance or leave it for the recipient to pay upon delivery. Over the past two centuries, the Postal Service has grown and changed dramatically, but its mission of promoting free and open communication has remained the same.
Contrary to popular belief, the U.S. Postal Service has no “official motto.” The familiar sentence, “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds,” is commonly misidentified as the creed of our mail carriers, but actually, it is just the inscription found on the General Post Office in New York City at 8th Avenue and 33rd Street. According to historians, the sentence appears in the works of Herodotus and describes the expedition of the Greeks against the Persians, around 500 B.C. The Persians operated a system of mounted postal couriers, and the sentence describes the fidelity with which their work was done.

The second “holiday” is USO (United Service Organization) Day. The USO was created on this date in 1941. I was fortunate enough to attend two USO shows in my Military career, and still have fond memories of both of them. The USO, however, does much more than provide entertainment to service members abroad. The USO is a private, nonprofit organization whose mission is to support the troops by providing morale, welfare, and recreation-type services to our men and women in uniform. The intent of the USO is to show the world that the American people care about their servicemen and women by providing a touch of home to the military, no matter where they are stationed. The USO currently operates more than 140 centers worldwide and service members and their families visit these centers more than 6.9 million times each year. This link will lead you to more information about this worthwhile organization.

The third “holiday” today is Rosa Parks Day. Rosa Parks Day is an American holiday in honor of the civil rights leader Rosa Parks. In California and Missouri, it is celebrated on her birthday, February 4. In Ohio and Oregon, it is celebrated on the day she was arrested, December 1. Rosa Parks was a seamstress by profession; she was also the secretary for the Montgomery chapter of the NAACP. Her arrest on December 1, 1955, spawned a boycott of the bus company which didn’t end until December 20, 1956, when a federal ruling, Browder v. Gayle, took effect and led to a Supreme Court decision that declared the Alabama and Montgomery laws requiring segregated buses to be unconstitutional. The 381-day boycott almost bankrupted the bus company.

Another “holiday” today is Liberace Day. Wladziu Valentino Liberace was born on May 16, 1919. His family called him Walter and his friends called him Lee, but we all just called him Liberace. This holiday is celebrated on the anniversary of his death on February 4, 1987.  While he had a life style that was flamboyant, both and off the stage, he had a career that spanned over 4 decades. He was a hard worker, did what he loved…and, he loved was music, and it showed in every time he performed.

The “holidays” listed below are also celebrated today. As usual, links are provided.

The first food-related “holiday today is Homemade Soup Day. What’s more comforting than a bowl of soup on a cold day? This time of year, there is nothing like a hearty, delicious bowl of fresh homemade soup to warm your soul. Whether your favorite is chicken noodle, tomato, or minestrone, or something else, today is a great day to enjoy a piping hot bowl of this perfect comfort food. The history of soup is likely as old as the history of cooking itself. The simple concept of combining various nutritious ingredients into a large pot to create a filling, easy to serve food has probably been around since man discovered fire. There are many regional varieties which have evolved according to local ingredients and tastes. Italian minestrone, French onion, New England chowder, and Russian borscht are all perfect examples.
Sorry folks, but today, that sodium laced, soggy crap in a can just won’t do. Celebrate this holiday by making a batch of homemade soup from your favorite recipe.

The other food-related “holiday” today is National Stuffed Mushroom Day. There are all sorts of things with which you can stuff your mushrooms. A popular stuffing for mushrooms is breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley, olive oil, and Parmesan cheese, but the possibilities are endless and limited only by your imagination. In the 1940’s and 1950’s, restaurants began presenting stuffed mushrooms as a delicacy and used expensive ingredients such as hot sausage or crab meat. Make your favorite type of stuffed mushrooms today. The greatest thing about this day is that when you are done creating your masterful dish, you get to stuff your face too.

On this date in 1964 – The Administrator of General Services announced that the 24th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution had been ratified. The amendment banned the poll tax.

Other historical events that happened on this date are:

  • In 1783 – Britain declared a formal cessation of hostilities with its former colony, the United States.
  • In 1789 – Electors unanimously chose George Washington to be the first president of the United States.
  • In 1824 – J.W. Goodrich introduced rubber galoshes to the public.
  • In 1847 – In Maryland, the first U.S. Telegraph Company was established.
  • In 1861 – Delegates from six southern states met in Montgomery, AL, to form the Confederate States of America.
  • In 1913 – Louis Perlman received a patent for his de-mountable tire-carrying rims.
  • In 1932 – The  first Winter Olympics were held in the United States at Lake Placid, NY.
  • In 1945 – During World War II, President Franklin Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Soviet leader Josef Stalin began a conference at Yalta to outline plans for Germany’s defeat.
  • In 1957 – Smith-Corona Manufacturing Inc., of New York, began selling portable electric typewriters. The first machine weighed 19 pounds.
  • In 1974 – Patricia (Patty) Hearst was kidnapped in Berkeley, CA, by the Symbionese Liberation Army.
  • In 1997 – A civil jury in California found O.J. Simpson liable in the death of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. Goldman’s parents were awarded $8.5 million in compensatory damages.
  • And in 1999 – Gary Coleman was sentenced to a $400 fine, a suspended 90-day jail sentence, and ordered to attend 52 anger-management classes. The sentence stemmed from Coleman assaulting an autograph seeker on July 30, 1998.If you were born on this date, you share a birthday with the following illustrious individuals:

If you were born on this date, you share a birthday with the following illustrious individuals:


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