Voyager 2, the first of two Voyager spacecraft (Voyager 2 was launched before Voyager 1 — go figure), was sent to explore the planets of our solar system on August 20, 1977.
Aboard each space craft is a Golden Record, “a 12-inch gold-plated copper disk containing sounds and images selected to portray the diversity of life and culture on Earth” so that extra-terrestials might learn about life on our planet. Among the music is Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, various native music and Chuck Berry performing “Johnny B. Goode.”
If we ever hear from extra-terrestials, I imagine their message to us will be, “Send more Chuck Berry.”
… was designated 49 years ago today (1967). It is the only home Eisenhower ever owned.
Eisenhower National Historic Site is the home and farm of General and President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Located adjacent to the Gettysburg Battlefield, the farm served the President as a weekend retreat and a meeting place for world leaders. With its peaceful setting and view of South Mountain, it was a much needed respite from Washington and a backdrop for efforts to reduce Cold War tensions.
Eisenhower National Historic Site comprises 690 acres and includes four farms, three of which were used by President Eisenhower for his show herd of black Angus cattle. Today the farm is maintained as it was during the Eisenhower years and the President’s home retains nearly all its original furnishings. You are invited to tour the home and grounds, and take a walk to the cattle barns and skeet range.
Eisenhower National Historic Site
Lyndon Baines Johnson, the 36th President of the United States, was born 108 years ago today.
Yours truly read Ron Chernow’s superb biography of Alexander Hamilton last week and definitely recommend it.
It is long enough however, that I began to root for Burr to get it over with.
… died in Philadelphia on April 17th in 1790. He was 84.
In his twenties Franklin had written an epitaph for himself:
The body of
B. Franklin, Printer;
(Like the cover of an old book,
Its contents worn out,
and stripped of its lettering and gilding)
Lies here, food for worms.
But the work shall not be lost:
For it will, (as he believed) appear once more,
In a new and more elegant edition,
Revised and corrected
By the Author.
By the age of 84 he wished for something simpler. The marble over his grave simply reads: Benjamin and Deborah Franklin.
Information from Walter Isaacson’s superb biography of Franklin.
“Jesus Christ and General Jackson!”
What Vice President Harry Truman is reported to have said when told it was urgent he go the White House 70 years ago today.
. . . was assassinated while standing on the balcony outside his room at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, on this date in 1968. He was 39 years old.
The evening before King concluded his speech with:
And then I got to Memphis. And some began to say the threats, or talk about the threats that were out. What would happen to me from some of our sick white brothers?
Well, I don’t know what will happen now. We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn’t matter with me now. Because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the promised land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the promised land. And I’m happy, tonight. I’m not worried about anything. I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.