A sure rifle shot who became a national celebrity, Annie Oakley was born on this date in 1860. Take accurate aim at an adorably ambitious all around airplay archive about Annie activated anthology album and age anniversary on Crosscurrents, 8/13 at 8 am.
ANNIE OAKLEY ON KRNN, 8/13: live on-air link: http://www.krnn.org
Annie Oakley was not her real name.
The fifth of seven surviving children, Oakley was born Phoebe Ann Moses on August 13, 1860, in rural Darke County, Ohio. Although she became a Wild West folk hero, the sharpshooter spent her entire childhood in the Buckeye State. Called “Annie” by her sisters, she reportedly chose Oakley as her professional surname after the name of an Ohio town near her home.
Oakley proved an expert shot at a young age.
Annie tagged along with her father as he hunted and trapped in the woods. From an early age, Annie showed an extraordinary talent for marksmanship. “I was eight years old when I made my first shot,” she later recalled, “and I still consider it one of the best shots I ever made.” Steadying her father’s old muzzle-loading rifle on a porch rail, she picked off a i a local grocery store.
She outgunned a professional sharpshooter—and then married him.
A Cincinnati hotelkeeper arranged a shooting contest between 15-year-old Annie and a traveling professional sharpshooter named Frank Butler who regularly challenged local marksmen as he toured the country. Butler, who reportedly chuckled when he first saw his opponent, hit 24 out of 25 targets. The teenager hit all 25. After winning the shooting match, Annie won Butler’s heart. The two married the following summer and remained wedded for 50 years.
Oakley offered to raise a shooting women to fight in the Spanish-American War.
on April 5, 1898, Oakley penned a note to President William McKinley. The performer told the president that she felt confident that his good judgment would prevent war from breaking out between the United States and Spain before adding: “But in case of such an event I am ready to place a company of fifty lady sharpshooters at your disposal. Every one of them will be an American and as they will furnish their own arms and ammunition will be little if any expense to the government.” That offer and a similar one Oakley made during World War I were not accepted.
Her name is synonymous with free tickets.
In the late 1800s and early 1900s, ushers traditionally punched a hole or two in free tickets to the circus, theater or sporting events in order to differentiate them from those of paying customers when tabulating receipts. The pock-marked tickets resembled the playing cards that Oakley would shoot holes through during her performances, which led to free admissions being referred to as “Annie Oakleys.” According to the Dickson Baseball Dictionary, the term also became a part of baseball lingo to refer to a walk because it was a “free pass” to first base.
Thanks to Thomas Edison, she became a movie star.
In 1888, Oakley acted in Deadwood Dick, a financially unsuccessful play. At the Paris Exposition the next year, though, she met Buffalo Bill Cody’s friend Thomas Edison. In 1894, Oakley visited Edison in New Jersey and showed off her shooting skills for the inventor’s Kinetoscope. The resulting film, called The Little Sure Shot of the Wild West, featured Oakley shooting a rifle to break glass balls. Although she didn’t continue acting in film, she did act in The Western Girl, a play in which she portrayed a sharpshooter, in 1902 and 1903.
“Aim at a high mark and you’ll hit it. No, not the first time, nor the second time. Maybe not the third. But keep on aiming and keep on shooting for only practice will make you perfect.”
“For me, sitting still is harder than any kind of work.”
“I ain’t afraid to love a man. I ain’t afraid to shoot him either.”
Aboard his 59ft ketch, Charles Blyth on this date in 1971 arrived back to port in England to become the first person to sail solo non-stop around the world against the prevailing winds and currents. We hope to have you sail with us for Sir Blyth tribute on Crosscurrents, 8/7 at 8 am.
SIR CHARLES BLYTH ON KRNN, 8/6: live on-air link: http://www.krnn.org
British Steel Faces the Test
The Circumnavigators – by Don Holm
(c) 1974 by Donald R. Holm
originally published by Prentice-Hall, NY
– 31 –
Maureen said, “Well, why not sail around the
world the other way?” I had other things to
think about, but her words stayed in my mind.
Why not? (l)
THE TIME WAS 1950 G.M.T., DECEMBER 24, 1970. FIVE
miles to the south of Cape Horn, a long white and sleek ketch with
main and jib set, rose and fell slowly in the heave,beating against the
prevailing light winds and currents.
On board the 59-foot British Steel was not a crew, but just one
man 30-year-old Chay Blyth and he was engaged in the last great
individual sailing adventure left on the Seven Seas. He was sailing
alone around the world, the “wrong way,” east to west in the high
southern latitudes nonstop.(2)
Now on Christmas Eve, not even halfway around, Chay Blyth
broke out his “Cape Horn meal,” packed for him before leaving by
his wife, Maureen, for the occasion crab, ham, roast potatoes, and
wine. It was not so much a celebration as a milestone on his voyage,
marking passage from the Atlantic into the Pacific. He still had the
Pacific ahead of him, then the Indian, and finally the Atlantic again,
before he would see his wife and daughter once more.
But he was not exactly alone. Only the day before, he had rendez-
voused with the British H.M.S. Endurance, on ice patrol.(3) A boat
had been sent off to bring him mail, fresh fruit, bread, and whiskey.
Moreover, with his modern radio equipment aboard, Blyth had been
~ 28O ~
in contact with shore stations during the entire trip so far. Now, with
the Endurance, he was able to send out feature material for the
newspapers at home as well as still and motion pictures taken thus
far, to his agent.
This circumnavigation by Chay Blyth in British Steel was the best-
planned and equipped voyage of its kind in the history of yachting
adventures. All the skill of a century of shipbuilding had gone into
the design and construction of this modern steel yacht for the single
purpose of providing a vehicle for the last remaining spectacular
ocean stunt. To assure success, the state-owned British Steel Corp had expended about 50,000 (pounds) or $120,000, of which 20,000 had
gone into the design by Robert Clark, and the construction in record
time of only four months by Philip & Son of Dartmouth.(4) Launched
on August 19, 1970, British Steel was the epitome of modern yacht
designing and the use of steel in yacht construction. She was also
equipped with an expensive array of electronics, and other appliances
needed for one man to master this large a vessel with its cloud of
1,300 square feet of sail.
The man himself was no ordinary sailor. In fact, Chay Blyth had a
reputation of being a non-yachtsman, somewhat disparagingly, as it
were. All of his yachting so far (and including this trip) was re-
garded as “publicity yachting.” Even Blyth thought of himself as an
expert in survival, not as a sailor.(5)
Born May 14, 1940, in Hawick, Scotland, he joined a parachute
regiment when he was eighteen. At twenty-one, he was already a
sergeant with experience in several overseas assignments. He had
completed the Arctic Survival School as well as the Desert Survival
School, and had become an instructor in the Eskdale Outward
Bound School by 1966, when an officer named Captain John Ridg-
way of the Parachute Regiment at Aldershot called for a volunteer to
accompany him on a rowing trip across the Atlantic in an open
dory.(6) The stunt was successfully completed in ninety-two days, and
for his part, Blyth was awarded the Empire Medal. In 1967, he left
the army and the following year entered the Sunday Times Golden
Globe Race around the world.(7)
Blyth’s participation in the race ended off Cape Town when his 30-
foot Kingfisher-class Dytiscus pitchpoled backward (bow over stern).
Making port, Blyth repaired the vessel, and with his wife, Maureen,
who had flown to Cape Town, sailed back to England. Home again
in civilian life, Blyth took a job as a salesman for a beverage
company. But he was restless without a physical challenge, and seri-
~ 281 ~
ously considered a suggestion by a former buddy in the Parachute
Regiment that they cross the Andes and canoe down the Amazon for
kicks. He even went to London and talked to the pros on Fleet
Street, who advised him the Amazon stunt would probably arouse
the most interest, since everything had already been done in the
yachting arena. Later, he remembered a chance remark by Maureen,
and the idea of a nonstop singlehanded voyage around grew upon
In March, 1969, he went to the Birmingham Boat Show, and there
met a former newspaperman and public relations practitioner named
Terry Bond. Out of this meeting evolved a working partnership and a
plan which was presented to the British Steel Corporation, which was
casually shopping around for some way to publicize its image.
Next came months of planning, designing, conferences, setbacks,
hectic preparations, and inevitable frustrations. For this kind of
project, one needs a course in survival to maintain one’s health and
sanity. Finally, on Sunday, October 18, Blyth went aboard the sleek
new yacht from the jetty of the Royal Southern Yacht Club in the
Hamble River with Maureen and a party of friends for one last
farewell. They motored down to the starting area near the Hook
Buoy in Southampton Water. There, Maureen and their friends
were taken off by the Blue Crystal, and Chay was alone waiting for
the starting gun to be fired by Commodore A. R. Lightfoot.
In the melee that followed, as the fleet escorted him out to the
Needles, one of the launches rammed his boat and cut a nasty dent
in the sleek white topsides. But he was on his way, on the most
spectacular adventure of his young life, and the one which would
bring him a share of British maritime immortality to say nothing of a
His route was to take him south to Cape Horn, west against the
Roaring Forties, across the Indian Ocean, around Cape Horn, and
back up the Atlantic to England, for the most part against prevailing
winds and currents. What else was left to do if one were to record
another first in a bluewater yacht? Since Captain Joshua Slocum’s
voyage, which started it all, hundreds and maybe thousands of yachts
had sailed around the world in all directions. As Professor Roger
Strout had remarked back in the 1930s on his circumnavigation,
everything that came after Magellan was anticlimax. Sir Francis
Chichester had beaten the average wool and grain clipper ship time,
east-about, when in his late sixties. The young merchant marine
officer, Robin Knox-Johnston, had become the first to sail around
~ 282 ~
nonstop, also east-about. Dozens of stunters had rowed across the
oceans, even long before the ordeal completed with Captain Ridg-
way. Circumnavigations had been made by concrete vessels, by
catamarans and trimarans, and even by an amphibious Jeep. Until
someone came up with a suitable private submarine capable of sailing
around the world underwater, the only remaining feat was a wrong-
way nonstop singlehanded passage.
Physically as well as spiritually, no man was ever better prepared
for such an undertaking than Blyth. In robust good health, full of
zest for life and adventure, his reactions and coordinations sharpened
by years of commando training, even a wrong-way voyage was ex-
pected to be an easy cruise.
Sailing down the Atlantic, he had trouble in the northeast trades
with the sails. Off the Rio de la Plata, he encountered a pampero
and could not lower his mainsail because of jammed slides, making
necessary a hazardous trip up the mast. Off Cape Horn, he was
driven south into the ice fields by a Force 9 gale in enormous seas
that smashed his self-steering gear beyond repair and caused a serious
head injury. From then on, he had nothing but trouble.
In late February, near New Zealand, he suffered a severe knock-
down by a graybeard wave which bent the mast and damaged the
rigging When he crossed the southern Indian Ocean, he was bat-
tered for five days by the worst storm he had ever experienced, and
probably one which he could not have survived had not his steel
vessel been built like a submarine. He was driven five hundred miles
off course by it.
Rounding the Cape of Good Hope, he was forced to spend as long
as twenty hours at a time steering. On June 28, he crossed his out-
bound track, having technically circumnavigated. On July 19, he
celebrated his daughter’s birthday with a special pack of goodies, and
was spoken west of Ushant by the H.M.S. Ark Royal. He sailed
through the tunny fleet, and, on July 31, a chartered airplane with a Sunday Mirror team flew over to take photos. Navy ships stayed with him the rest of the way while he toasted himself with champagne and
prepared himself and the ship for the homecoming.
On August 2, the Blue Crystal came out to meet him and to lead
him to a mooring at the Royal Southern Yacht Club. The voyage was
over, the 292-day passage, Hamble to Hamble, the fastest nonstop on
record. His welcome was even bigger than those of Rose, Chichester,
and Knox-Johnston; and unlike those homecomings, as the British
Steel sailed up the Solent, the yacht looked as if it had just come out
~ 283 ~
of the yard, topsides spotless, gear in first-class condition. Blyth,
himself, clean-shaven and dressed in his best, bounded about the
deck ebullient of spirit and in the best of health. The grueling voyage
had been carried off in the best British tradition; and with superb
timing, Blyth managed to make his appearance in the midst of Cowes
Week. And to complete the tableau, he was greeted personally by the
Prince of Wales, the Duke of Edinburgh, Princess Anne, and Prime
Minister Edward Heath.
Upon his return, the yacht was given to him to keep, and the
young national hero went on to share the limelight with Sir Francis
Chichester, Sir Alec Rose, Knox-Johnston, and the others.(8)
~ 284 ~
– end Chapter 31 –
One of the giants of blues, linking traditional and modern styles moving blues forward without losing its roots, Buddy Guy was born on this date in 1936. Lose your blues with the music of a blues master on Bud Guy’s birthday tribute on Crosscurrents, 7/30 at 8 am.
BUDDY GUY ON KRNN, 7/30, live on air link: http://www.krnn.org
The Massachusetts General Court authorized construction of the first lighthouse in America in Boston’s Outer Harbor on this date in 1715. We hope you can find your way to the safe harbor of KRNN for a Boston Light tribute on Crosscurrents, 7/23 at 8 am. BOSTON LIGHTHOUSE ON CROSSCURRENTS, 7/23 at 8 am LIVE ON-AIR LINK: http://www.krnn.org
BOSTON LIGHT HISTORY IN BRIEF:
The historic Boston Harbor lighthouse, known as Boston Light to locals, was built in 1716 on Little Brewster Island, a spot of land 8 miles east of Boston.
First Lit: September 14, 1716 Built By: the Colony of Massachusetts
Current Tower Construction & Facts:
Year Built: 1783
Tower Height: 89 feet
It was originally 75 feet.
In 1859 it was raised to 89 feet and a new lantern room was added.
76 steps to the top
Foundation: Granite Ledge
Construction Materials: Rubble Stone/Brick Lining
Markings: White with Black Lantern
Relationship to Other Structures: Separat
Benjamin Franklin, 12 years old at the time, was urged by his brother to write a poem based on the disaster. The young Franklin wrote a poem called The Lighthouse Tragedy and hawked copies on the streets of Boston. Franklin later wrote in his autobiography that the poem was “wretched stuff,” although it “sold prodigiously.”
A cannon, America’s first fog signal, was placed on the island in 1719. Passing ships would fire their cannons when passing nearby in times of fog, and the keeper would reply with a blast from the light station. The cannon, cast in 1700 and possibly relocated from Long Island in the inner harbor, served on Little Brewster Island for 132 years.
In 1794, Knox’s yearly salary as keeper was set by the federal government at $266.67, which was raised to $333.33 in 1796.
Although I have not read very much about the Light, I did notice a story onlineabout a dog after my time out there. When I arrived on the island, there was a
dog there named “Bear,” a black Newfoundlander; it was rumored she was givento the Light by Mr. Snow and was sixteen years-old in 1968.
By 1989, the Coast Guard had automated almost every lighthouse in the United States and Boston Light was scheduled to be the last in this process. Preservation groups appealed to Congress and the Coast Guard, and with the help of Senator Edward M. Kennedy funding was appropriated to keep Coast Guard staff on Little Brewster, making the island a living museum of lighthouse history
In September 2003, Sally Snowman was appointed as the new civilian keeper — the first civilian keeper since the Coast Guard took over in 1941, and the first woman keeper in the lighthouse’s long history.
Only thing better than chasing an ice truck is being in the ice cream truck. You are invited to join our ice cream loving dogs for two hours of creamy smooth frozen blues tunes on WALKING THE BLUES AWAY Saturday 7/21 at 5-7 pm. LIVE AIR LINK http://www.krnn.org
Amazing Ice Cream Facts
Ice cream as we know it seems to have emerged in 17th-century France. (A first-century Roman emperor is said to have sent runners into the mountains for snow to be flavored with juices. In the 13th century.
Marco Polo brought back from China descriptions of a sherbet dessert.
The cone didn’t appear until 1904, when a Syrian waffle maker at the St. Louis World’s Fair began rolling his pastries into horns to help an ice cream vendor who had run out of dishes.
The idea of the ice cream cone had been patented a year earlier, in 1903, by an Italian in New York City, but the fair popularized it.
Today the average American eats about 20 quarts of ice cream a year―the world’s highest per capita consumption, according to the International Dairy Foods Association.
Top-selling ice cream flavors are: vanilla, with 33 percent of the market, and chocolate, with 19 percent.
It takes 5.8 pounds of whole milk and one pound of cream to make one gallon of ice cream.
The ice cream cone measured 2.81 m (9 ft 2.63 in) in height and was achieved by Mirco Della Vecchia and Andrea Andrighetti of Italy.
Some weird flavors of ice cream include buckwheat ice cream, beer flavored ice cream, and parmesan gelato.
June is the month that the most ice cream is produced.
California produces the most ice cream in America.
Chocolate syrup is the world’s most popular ice cream topping.
87% of Americans have ice cream in their freezer at any given time.
It takes about 50 licks to finish a single scoop ice cream cone.
The perfect temperature for scooping ice cream is between 6 and 10 degrees Fahrenheit.
“Brain Freeze” occurs when ice cream touches the roof of your mouth.
1 out of 5 people share ice cream with their pet.
An average dairy cow can produce enough milk in her lifetime to make a little over 9,000 gallons of ice cream.
In the U.S., all ice cream needs to have a minimum of 10% milkfat if it is to be labeled “ice cream”. This includes custard based (French Style) ice creams.
The U.S. celebrates National Ice Cream Month in July.
The U.S. produces the most ice cream in the world.
Ice cream became available to the general population in France in 1660.
Americans celebrated the victory of WWII with ice cream. In 1946, they ate more than 20 quarts of ice cream per person.
There is actually an ice cream diet designed for weight loss. You can read all about it in Prevention Magazine’s paperback, The Ice Cream Diet
19% of Americans say they eat ice cream in bed.
In the early days of television, mashed potatoes were used to simulate ice cream on cooking shows. Real ice cream melted too fast under the heat from the lighting.
Missouri designated the Ice Cream Cone as the Official State Dessert in 2008.
More ice cream was sold on Sundays than any other day of the week.
At one time it was against the law to serve ice cream on cherry pie in Kansas.
The first soft-serve ice cream machine was in an Olympia, Washington Dairy Queen.
Ice cream testers use gold spoons to be able to taste the product 100% without a slight percentage of ‘after-taste’ from typical spoons.
John Harrison, official tester for Dreyer’s Ice Cream, has his tongue insured for $1 million.
Despite its reputation as a cosmonaut staple, freeze-dried ice cream only made one mission to space. In 1968, it provided instant sugar rushes to the astronauts of Apollo 7.
For TV commercials, “Ice cream sundaes are often constructed of scoops of lard or mashed potato covered in motor oil.
Howard Hughes, the millionaire, was fond of Baskin-Robbins’ Banana Ripple ice cream. His ‘helpers’ had to order 200 gallons from the factory before it was discontinued. A few days later Hughes announced that he didn’t like it anymore.
“Raw Horse Flesh” is an ice cream flavor that is sold in Japan.
The world’s first batch of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream was made by Ben & Jerry’s, inspired by an anonymous note left on their flavor suggestion board.
First Lady Dolley Madison served ice cream at the inaugural at the White House in 1813.
Ice Cream used to be called cream ice.
The Roman Emperor Nero (54-68 A.D.) had ice and snow brought to him from the mountains, which he stored in special rooms under his palace so that he could top it with fruit to enjoy.
In 1984, President Ronald Reagan designated July as National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday of that month as National Ice Cream Day.
Around 1800, ice houses were invented and ice cream became an American industry.
The first ice cream cone was made by Italo Marchiony in New York City.
Did you know that a 125 mL (1/2 cup) serving of regular vanilla ice cream can be a source of nutrients such as calcium and vitamin A?
The major ingredient in ice cream is air!
The U.S. ice cream industry generates more than $21 billion in annual sales.
Some weird flavors of ice cream include maple bacon, beer flavored, and pepperoni pizza.
In 1985, the biggest ice cream sundae was made in California. It stood twelve feet tall and was made with 4,667 gallons of ice Cream.
A twelve foot tall ice cream sundae could make about 70,000 regular size sundaes. That’s a lot of ice cream!
Sorbet is like ice cream but contains no milk.
Ice cream can be made in many types – ordinary ice cream, frozen custard, frozen yogurt, reduced-fat ice cream, sherbet, gelato, and others.
Ice cream recipe came to North America 250 years after it was discovered by Christopher Columbus.
Market analysts confirmed that ice cream sales increase many times during times of recession or wars.
Ice cream was introduced to America in the 1700’s, but mostly enjoyed by those of status and wealth.
Centuries ago people started making summer-time desserts by taking sweet cream (the richest part of milk) or custard (egg-based puddings) and cooling them down with ice.
Novelties as ice cream on sticks and ice cream bars were introduced in the 1920s.
Ice cream cones were popularized in America during the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis, when an ice cream vendor ran out of cups and asked a nearby waffle vendor to roll up his waffles to hold the ice cream.
Under the American Blue Laws of the time, ice cream sodas weren’t allowed to be sold on Sundays. To circumvent this rule, they invented the ice cream sundae.
Americans are the No.1 consumers of ice cream in the world, where an average person eats 48 pints of ice cream a year. In total, Americans consumed 1.58 billion gallons of ice cream in 2011.
Sugar in ice cream lowers its melting point, and the fats for its creamy texture.
Fat percentage in ice cream is regulated in the United States.
About 98% of U.S. families have ice cream in their fridges, at all times.
It takes 12 gallons of milk to create one gallon of ice cream.
The first ice cream parlor in America was founded in 1776 (The same year our declaration was made).
In ancient Rome, they ate snow and flavored it with fruit and honey as their ice cream.
About 9 percent of the milk produced by U.S. dairy farmers is used to produce ice cream.
The Beatles had an ice cream named after them by Baskin Robbins called Beatle Nut.
An inventor who revolutionized garment manufacturing with his patented stitching machine, Elias Howe was born on this date in 1819. You can tune up your sewing machine while you seamlessly listen on your radio to the Howe birthday on Crosscurrents, 7/9 at 8 am.
ELIAS HOWE ON CROSSCURRRENTS, 7/9: live on air link: http://www.krnn.org
Playlist to include: In My Own Fashion; Sharp Dressed Man; A Lawyer And A Draper; Her Strut; Needles And Pins; A Good Idea At The Time; Heart Machine; Silver Thread And Golden Needles; Ain’t No Easy Way; and Pincussion… among others.
Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. declared,
“We can imagine no more appropriate response to burning a flag than waving one’s own, no better way to counter a flag burner’s message than by saluting the flag that burns, no surer means of preserving the dignity even of the flag that burned than by – as one witness here did – according its remains a respectful burial. We do not consecrate the flag by punishing its desecration, for in doing so we dilute the freedom that this cherished emblem represents.”
“If there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea itself offensive or disagreeable.”
— Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397, 414, 1989
Happy Independence Day to you…
…let us all continue to safeguard our democracy!