Today in Hystery April 29th

On this day in 1429, Joan of Arc led Orleans, France, to victory over the English. She was only 19 years old! Most 19-year-old girls are busy picking out prom dresses. Joan was trying on armour. For her leadership she was made a noble, became a martyr, was canonized, became a saint and, I believe, won the Lady Byng Trophy for gentlemanly conduct.

On this day in 1553, a Flemish woman introduced the practice of starching linen. This is why you see women spitting on the iron. It makes the linen a little phlegmish.

On this day in 1661, the Chinese Ming dynasty occupied Taiwan. And the Taiwanese people couldn’t believe what had happened, thousands of vases lying all over the place.

On this day in 1707, the English and the Scottish parliaments accepted the Act of Union, both countries joining together to become Great Britain. I imagine this went over with the Scottish people like a dental appointment in London.

On this day in 1715, the famous English astronomer John Flamsteed observed Uranus for the 6th time. He also saw England and he saw France.

On this day in 1852, the first edition of Peter Roget’s Thesaurus was published. People were thrilled, pleased, overjoyed, ecstatic, glad, enchanted, charmed and tickled pink.

On this day in 1901, the 27th Kentucky Derby race took place. Jimmy Winkfield was the first across on the back of His Eminence. That’s also the punch line to a joke I used to tell.

On this day in 1941, Canada’s Finance Minister called income taxes ‘a temporary wartime expedient’. And you wonder why nobody believes anything a politician says. I tried to complain about it to Revenue Canada but the computer refused to listen to me.

On this day in 1945, Adolf Hitler married Eva Braun. Her parents were very upset that she was marrying such a loser.

On this day in 1995, in Kitchener Ontario, butchers finished making the world’s longest sausage. It was 28.77 miles long. So that was the world’s biggest sausage. The world’s biggest wiener didn’t come along until George W. Bush got elected.

If your birthday is April 29th, you share it with comedian Jerry Seinfeld who was born on this day in 1954. My wish for both you and Jerry is that nowhere in the gift boxes you get today is a puffy shirt.

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