Historian’s Almanac for Augusst 4, 2013

It is the anniversary of The Saturday Evening Post’s début as a weekly in 1821.  It continued publication until its demise in 1969, due in part to a successful lawsuit against the magazine for libel.  The suit claimed that an article in the Post alleged that Georgia Bulldogs football coach Wally Butts and Alabama head coach conspired to fix football games. 

Billboard Magazine introduced its “Hot 100” chart.  The first number one song on the Hot 100 chart was Ricky Nelson’s “Poor Little Fool.”  The oldest musician to occupy the number one spot on the Hot 100 was Louis Armstrong, born on this day in 1901.  Satchmo’s recording of “Hello Dolly” sold more than a million copies.  “There is two kinds of music,” said Armstrong, “the good, and the bad.  I play the good kind.”

A ban on all recordings by the Beatles went into effect on most radio stations in the United States in 1966.  The drastic action was taken in response to John Lennon’s comment that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ. 

A twenty-two cent postage stamp honoring the Nobel Laureate William Faulkner went on sale at the post office in Oxford, Mississippi in 1986.  Ironically, Faulkner was fired as the postmaster of the same post office in 1924.   William Faulkner, who once said “Pouring out liquor is like burning books,” was named after his great-grandfather William Clark Falkner, who was gunned down in the town square of Ripley, Mississippi.

And finally these words from Faulkner:  “I decline to accept the end of man… I refuse to accept this. I believe that man will not merely endure: he will prevail. He is immortal, not because he alone among the creatures has an inexhaustible voice, but because he has a soul, a spirit capable of compassion and sacrifice and endurance. The poet’s, the writer’s, duty is to write about these things. It is his privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart, by reminding him of the courage and honor and hope and pride and compassion and pity and sacrifice which have been the glory of his past. The poet’s voice need not merely be the record of man, it can be one of the props, the pillars to help him endure and prevail.”

Until next time, be good, do good, and always live under the mercy.

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One response to “Historian’s Almanac for Augusst 4, 2013

  1. “Pouring out liquor is like burning books.”

    I remember an (apocryphal?) story that William Faulkner got started writing because Sherwood Anderson (Winesburg, Ohio fame) would spend his evenings drinking with him. Sherwood would recover in the mornings and write. He would spend the repeated evenings with Faulkner drinking some more. After a few days (weeks? months?) of this Faulkner decided that any profession that involved drinking in the evenings and shooting the shit was a profession for him.

    He validates my inner alcoholic… Which often becomes my outer alcoholic.

    Like

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