Life Day 25074: Remember the Alamo

March 6, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning Texians (non-Hispanic white residents of Mexican Texas — later the Republic of Texas). Today is March 6. The first “holiday” today is Alamo Day. The siege at the Alamo Mission, located in what is now modern-day San Antonio Texas, was a pivotal event in the Texas Revolution. Following a 13-day siege, which had begun on February 26, Mexican troops under General Santa Anna launched a final assault on the Alamo Mission killing all of the Texian defenders on this date in 1836. Santa Anna’s cruelty during the battle inspired many Texians—both Texas settlers and adventurers from the United States—to join the Texian Army. Buoyed by a desire for revenge, the Texians defeated the Mexican Army at the Battle of San Jacinto 6-weeks later on, April 21, 1836, ending the revolution.
Several months previously, Texians had driven all Mexican troops out of Mexican Texas. About 100 Texians were then garrisoned at the Alamo. The Texian force grew slightly with the arrival of reinforcements led by eventual Alamo co-commandersJames Bowie and William B. Travis. On February 23, approximately 1,500 Mexicans marched into San Antonio as the first step in a campaign to retake Texas. For the next 10 days the two armies engaged in several skirmishes with minimal casualties. Aware that his garrison could not withstand an attack by such a large force, Travis wrote multiple letters pleading for more men and supplies, but fewer than 100 reinforcements arrived to join the battle.
In the early morning hours of March 6, the Mexican Army advanced on the Alamo. After repulsing two attacks, the Texians were unable to fend off a third attack. As Mexican soldiers scaled the walls, most of the Texian soldiers withdrew into interior buildings. Defenders unable to reach these points were slain by the Mexican cavalry as they attempted to escape. Between five and seven Texians may have surrendered; if so, they were quickly executed. Most eyewitness accounts reported between 182 and 257 Texians died while most historians of the Alamo agree that around 600 Mexicans were killed or wounded. Several noncombatants were sent to Gonzales to spread the word of the Texian defeat. The news sparked both a strong rush to join the Texian army. The slaughter spawned the catch phrase “Remember the Alamo”.
Soon after, the Alamo complex gradually became more widely known as a battle site rather than a mission. The Texas Legislature purchased the land and buildings in the early 1900’s and designated the Alamo chapel as an official Texas State Shrine. The Alamo is now “the most popular tourist site in Texas”.

The second “holiday today is Oreo Cookie Day. Oreo Chocolate Sandwich Cookies have been around for over a century. On this date in 1912, the Oreo Cookie was created. Since then, over 500 billion Oreo Cookies have been sold, which makes them the best selling cookie of the 20th century. Oreos were originally called Oreo Biscuits but have had a few name changes over the years. In 1921, they changed their name to Oreo Sandwich, and in 1948, the name was changed again to Oreo Creme Sandwich. The last name change was in 1974 when it was changed to it’s current ‘official’ name Oreo Chocolate Sandwich Cookie. I just call them Oreos. No matter what you call them, they are delicious, and “milk’s favorite cookie”.

Another holiday today is Namesake Day. This is the first holiday of “Celebrate Your Name Week”, celebrated during the first complete week in March. Namesake Day encourages you to explore the roots of your name. Ever wondered why you have the name you do? Explore the origins of your given name(s). Explore your surname too. Have fun discovering whether you have a name twin. Find out if you were named after somebody or something in particular.

The last holiday today is Dentist Day. Not to be confused with Dennis Day — the affable, yet dim-witted crooner from Jack Benny’s long-running radio and television programs — Dentist’s Day is a day to examine your oral health regimen. Do you brush after each meal? Do you floss? Do you periodically check for signs of gum disease?
Although dentists aren’t the most popular people, the provide an invaluable service. They aren’t the bad guys here…all they do is repair the carnage you do to your teeth and gums through years, sometimes even decades of neglect.
You only get one free set of permanent teeth, the rest you pay for dearly. You can also use this holiday as a reminder to schedule an appointment with your dentist.

There are also two food-related holidays today (in addition to the aforementioned Oreo Cookie Day).
The first food-related “holiday” today is National Frozen Food Day. In Proclamation #5157, President Ronald Reagan said: “Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim March 6 as Frozen Food Day, and I call upon the American people to observe such day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.” And, so this became a true National day of recognition and celebration.
Clarence Birdseye developed the process for flash-freezing foods in the late 1920’s, and in 1930, the first of his frozen foods hit the shelves of markets in Springfield, MA. Frozen foods are a part of most Americans’ diet whether we like it or not.
Author’s Note: I am not a big fan of processed frozen foods like TV dinners, but frozen vegetables and fruits are picked and frozen at their peak of freshness and can be as nutritious as fresh…provided to don’t boil them to oblivion. I’m not ashamed to admit that even I occasionally indulge in eating frozen foods…such as ice cream, and left-overs.

The other food-related holiday today is National White Chocolate Cheesecake Day. A Greek writer named Athenaeus recorded the oldest surviving cheesecake recipe. The ancient dessert called for just three ingredients—cheese, honey, and flour. Despite its simplicity, the Greeks believed that cheesecake had special powers. Brides and grooms ate it as a wedding cake, and athletes enjoyed it before the first Olympic games in 776 BC.
The cheesecake we know and love today relies heavily on cream cheese, which wasn’t invented until the 1870s. By the early 1900s, cheesecake appeared on almost every restaurant menu in New York City and soon became a nationwide sensation. People soon after began experimenting with different cheesecake flavors like piña colada, Key lime, chocolate, and evidently white chocolate, which is how we got this holiday.

In this date in 1820 – The Missouri Compromise was enacted by the U.S. Congress and signed by U.S. President James Monroe. The act admitted Missouri into the Union as a slave state, but prohibited slavery in the rest of the northern Louisiana Purchase territory.

Other significant historical events which happened on this date are:

  • In 1521 – Ferdinand Magellan discovered Guam.
  • In 1808 – At Harvard University, the first college orchestra was founded.
  • In 1857 – The U.S. Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision ruled that blacks could not sue in federal court to be citizens.
  • In 1899 – Aspirin was patented by German researchers Felix Hoffman and Hermann Dreser.
  • In 1900 – In West Virginia, an explosion trapped 50 coal miners underground.
  • In 1901 – An assassin tried to kill Wilhelm II of Germany in Bremen.
  • In 1928 – A Communist attack on Peking, China resulted in 3,000 dead.
  • In 1944 – During World War II, U.S. heavy bombers began the first American raid on Berlin. Allied planes dropped 2000 tons of bombs.
  • In 1946 – Ho Chi Minh, the President of Vietnam, struck an agreement with France that recognized his country as an autonomous state within the Indochinese Federation and the French Union.
  • In 1947 – The first air-conditioned naval ship, “The Newport News,” was launched from Newport News, VA.
  • In 1960 – Switzerland granted women the right to vote in municipal elections.
  • In 1960 – The United States announced that it would send 3,500 troops to Vietnam. We all know how well that worked out.
  • In 1967 – U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson announced his plan to establish a draft lottery. We all know how well that worked out too.
  • In 1970 – Charles Manson released his album “Lies” to finance his defense against murder charges.
  • In 1973 – U.S. President Richard Nixon imposed price controls on oil and gas.
  • In 1981 – Walter Cronkite appeared on his last episode of “CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite.” He had been on the job 19 years.
  • In 1982 – National Basketball Association history was made when San Antonio beat Milwaukee 171-166 in three overtime periods to set the record for most points by two teams in a game. The record was beaten on December 13, 1983 by the Pistons and the Nuggets when they played to a final score of 186-184.
  • In  1983 – The United States Football League began its first season of pro football competition.
  • In 1992 – The last episode of “The Cosby Show” aired. The show had been on since September of 1984.
  • In 1997 – Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II launched the first official royal Web site.

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

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