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Leasing News is a web site that posts information, news, and
entertainment for the commercial bank, finance and leasing industry

Friday, December 19, 2014

Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines

Started American Leasing 43 Years Ago
      Earliest Photo 1977
  Classified Ads---Executive Management
What and Why of Section 179 to the Leasing Industry
  by Christopher Menkin
New Hires---Promotions in the Leasing Industry
   Leasing Industry Ads---Help Wanted
Adopt a Rescue Dog for Christmas
    by Kit Menkin
Wireless Subscribers
 Top 4 U.S. Carriers
       Salvation Army Kettle
$5,960 Raised to Date—Thank You, Donors
John Kenny Hanging Wall Calendars
   on Facebook
Reaffirming Santa, Relocating the Elf
  Poem by Barry S. Marks, Esq.
Online Desktop Spending Reaffirms Strong Holiday Season
Inherent/Mr. Turner
The Skeleton Twins/Magic in the Moonlight/Time Bandits
 Film/DVD Reviews by Leasing News' Fernando Croce
    Classified ads—Syndicator
News Briefs---
$100 million Sale/Leaseback ATM Ponzi scheme
 'We're Ready': OnDeck CEO on Going Public, Working with Banks
   Tax Extenders Likely to Get Tiny Reprieve
    $57.6 million for Countrywide whistleblower
     Tech investors plowing money into future
      14 Things Not to Buy During the Holidays

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (writer's columns)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months (Be Careful of Doing Business)
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You May have Missed---
   SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer
    Sports Briefs---
      California Nuts Brief---
       "Gimme that Wine"    
          This Day in American History
           Daily Puzzle
               Weather, USA or specific area
                 Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release” and was not written by Leasing News nor information verified, but from the source noted. When an article is signed by the writer, it is considered a “by line.” It reflects the opinion and research of the writer.

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Started American Leasing 43 Years Ago
Earliest Photo 1977

James J. “Jim” Kalinski, General Partner Christopher “Kit” Menkin, Managing Partner
American Leasing,
Santa Clara, California
(1990 picture of Jim, latest one in the file)

Talked Jim into leaving SHW Capital, Sausalito, to become operations manager/credit manager, with the incentive of not only salary and car, but a partnership.  At the time, he only rode a motorcycle, so a car was the closing of the deal; a Cadillac. When he first drove it, always with all the windows open, as he said he liked the feel of the air around him. He eventually left to start his own company.


Editor/Publisher, Leasing News
American Leasing, wind down 2005
Closed office: 2007
Portfolio very small


Classified Ads---Executive Management

(These ads are “free” to those seeking employment
or looking to improve their position)

Accomplished leasing executive driven to deliver increased revenues, operating efficiencies, improved sales productivity and customer acquisition. Seeking new opportunity to utilize my strategic, ideation, communication and analytical strengths to develop, implement and execute your organization’s strategic plan.

Free Posting for those seeking employment in Leasing:

All “free” categories “job wanted” ads:




What and Why of Section 179 to the Leasing Industry
by Christopher Menkin

To readers who live on a different planet, the extension of Section 179 means you can deduct the full price of equipment, machinery, and other items up to $500,000.  It means with one lease payment, you can obtain a write-off of up to $500,000; depending on when in placement as well as other criteria (see you tax accountant).  Unfortunately, this applies only to equipment delivered, working, and accepted in 2014. President Obama will sign the legislation, if he has not by press time.  It gives those who meet the criteria 10 days to qualify (and to those who have already done so, it gives them a great tax break.)  Unfortunately, there is no indication whether the deduction will be renewed in 2015.

And yes! Used Equipment (that is new to you) qualifies for Section 179, however used equipment does not qualify for Bonus Depreciation,
as do business vehicles.

Before getting into equipment that is qualified for the tax benefit, here is what does not qualify, according to www.section179.0rg:

  • Real Property does not qualify for the Section 179 Deduction. Real Property is typically defined as land, buildings, permanent structures and the components of the permanent structures (including improvements). Other examples of property that would not qualify for the Section 179 Deduction include paved parking areas and fences.
  • Air conditioning and heating equipment.
  • Property used outside the United States.
  • Property that is used to furnish lodging.
  • Property acquired by gift or inheritance, as well as property purchased from related parties. (No, you can't sell equipment to yourself and qualify for Section 179).
  • Any property that is not considered to be personal property.
  • Expiration Notice: The 'Small Business Jobs & Credit Act of 2010' allowed taxpayers to expense up to $250,000 of the cost of qualified leasehold improvement property, qualified restaurant property, and qualified retail improvement property. This provision has expired and no longer available to small business owners

What does qualify:

  • Equipment (machines, etc.) purchased for business use
  • Tangible personal property used in business
  • Business Vehicles with a gross vehicle weight in excess of 6,000 lbs. (Section 179 Vehicle Deductions)
  • Computers
  • Computer "Off-the-Shelf" Software
  • Office Furniture
  • Office Equipment
  • Property attached to your building that is not a structural component of the building (i.e.: a printing press, large manufacturing tools and equipment)
  • Partial Business Use (equipment that is purchased for business use and personal use: generally, your deduction will be based on the percentage of time you use the equipment for business purposes).


The addition of software to the items covered by the Section 179 deduction comes with a couple of caveats; it can't be "custom code," meaning you can't write off software that's been specially designed for your farm by a developer or crop adviser.

"Off-the-shelf computer software placed in service during the tax year is qualifying property for purposes of the Section 179 Deduction. This is computer software that is readily available for purchase by the general public, is subject to a nonexclusive license, and has not been substantially modified," according to "It includes any program designed to cause a computer to perform a desired function. However, a database or similar item is not considered computer software unless it is in the public domain and is incidental to the operation of otherwise qualifying software.

In other words, if the core software is standardized, a small amount of customization is okay."

In this short article, you should consult your CPA for verification and for more immediate information, please visit:

Here is the 123 pages "Tax Extender's Bill:"



New Hires---Promotions in the Leasing Industry


Bruce Braviroff was hired as Director of Sales & Marketing at Danjon Capital, Orange County, California. Previously, he was Vice President, National Accounts, TIP Capital (March, 2013 – November, 2014);
Director, SC Equipment Funding (July, 2006 – February, 2013);
Sales, Signal Capital (1983 – 1988). 

James M. Conniff was hired as Senior Vice President, Human Resources, GATX Corporation, Chicago, Illinois. "Mr. Conniff began his career with GATX in 1981, spending his first ten years with the Company in various finance roles. He then transitioned to Human Resources, where his many responsibilities included employee benefits, labor relations, talent acquisition, incentive plan design and training...Mr. Conniff holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Northern Illinois University and a Master of Business Administration from Loyola University of Chicago."

Justin Dearborn hired as Financing and Leasing Consultant for Beacon Funding, Northbrook, Illinois; he is located Dover, New Hampshire.  He joined Direct Capital Corporation, September, 2002, and his last position was as Senior Finance Manager. Education: University of New Hampshire - Whittemore School of Business and Economics (1998 – 2001). 

Brian Friedly hired as Financing and Leasing Consultant for Beacon Funding, Northbrook, Illinois; he is located Dover, New Hampshire. "He has 12 years of experience in financing with experience at Direct Capital, Balboa Capital and Ascentium Capital... The expansion  (to  Dover, New Hampshire) comes thanks to Beacon’s status as an emerging commercial vehicle financing specialist combined with their exceptional activity in the region’s tow, boom and bucket truck markets.”

Cherisse Morin was hired as Sales Executive at Mercado Capital Leasing, Winnipeg, Canada. Previously, she was Sales Coordinator, National Leasing (January, 2012 – December, 2014). She joined National Leasing as Documentation Manager, March, 2006; promoted to Account Manager, March, 2007.  Honors & Awards: Achievers Club, Gold - Sales Coordinator, National Leasing (November, 2012). Achievers Club, Gold - Sales Coordinator, National Leasing (November, 2013). Certifications: Legal Administrative Assistant, Herzing College (June, 2004 – Present). Education: Red River College, Project Management, Project Management  (2014). (I am currently upgrading my education through Continuing Education at Red River College. I am pursuing my Project Management Designation.) Herzing College, Winnipeg, Legal Administrative Assistant, Legal Assistant/Paralegal (2004 – 2005). Canadian Professional Sales Association, Teneo Sales Training, Sales Training (2013).

Jon Muller was promoted to Director of Client Relations at Capital Alliance Group, Santa Ana, California. He joined the firm October, 2009, and rose to Senior Financial Consultant before being promoted. Previously, he was an Account Executive, Nationwide Business Credit, June, 2005; promoted to Senior Account Executive, May, 2006. Education: California State University-Long Beach, Bachelor's degree, Interpersonal and Organizational Communication (2001 – 2005).

Jim Narum was hired as Vice President, National Business Development, Interactive Health, Greater Minneapolis-St. Paul Area.  Previously, he was Senior Vice President, National Business Development, Health Solutions (October, 2010 – December, 2014); Business Development Manager, U.S. Bank (2007 – 2010); National Vice President, Health Fitness Corporation (1995 – 2007); Regional Vice President, Fitness Systems (1983 – 1995). Organizations: Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO), Board of Directors for 2 years and current Think Tank representative. Association for Worksite Health Promotion, member for over 15 years. Education: The University of Montana, M.S., Physical Education, Exercise Science (1981 – 1982). Concordia College, B.A., Physical Education and Health (1978 – 1980). Activities and Societies: Concert Choir, Assistant Women's Basketball Coach. Pacific Lutheran University, General - Liberal Arts (1975 – 1978). University of Minnesota, Masters of Public Health (MPH), Public Health Education and Promotion (2014). Pursuing the Executive Program of Public Health Practice MPH program while continuing my full-time national business development role





Leasing Industry Help Wanted


Adopt a Rescue Dog for Christmas
by Kit Menkin

In each Leasing News issue, a dog for adoption is posted, usually from a city included in a lead story. The effort is to cover where leasing companies are located with the hope that a dog may be rescued, and often saved from being put to sleep. Many are from owners who have been relocated, lost their home, or can no longer afford to keep their pet.

The rescue sites vary in their "online" abilities, especially with photos that don't represent the best view of the dog, or show them as they were picked up, ungroomed. I go through several sites, looking for a dog that I think will be adopted by a reader, basically getting my impression from the look of the dog by their eyes.

Here is a male 2 year, 8 month old Chocolate Labrador Retriever
RUFUS - ID#A154403

Orange County, California, Animal Services at (919) 942-7387
Ask for information about animal ID number A154403

7 Year old male, black and tan Rottweiler Mix
SHERIFF - ID#A159975

Orange County, California, Animal Services at (919) 942-7387
Ask for information about animal ID number A159975


Nugget - Adoption ID   V29281
Young male Collie, Labrador Retriever Mix
North Shore Animal League America, Port Washington, NY
(516) 883-7575

Young female Dalmatian Mix
Twyla's Friends, Kingwood, Texas




• Contract Negotiations • Fraud Investigations 
• Credit Investigations • Skip-tracing 
• Third-party Commercial Collections

Receivables Management LLC

John Kenny 
For flat fee or commissions basis | ph 315-866-1167|

(Leasing News provides this ad as a trade for investigations
and background information provided by John Kenny)


Salvation Army Kettle
$5,960 Raised to Date—Thank You, Donors

Carol Baker Brent Baron Bruce Cady
Brian Carey Edward Castagna John Caulfield
Richard Cohen Dale Davis Rob Day
Shawn Halladay Larry Hartmann Randy Haug
Jim Lahti Sam Khedkar Theresa Kabot, CLP
Bruce Kropschot Vern Laney Allan Levine
Bruce Lurie  Barry Marks Paul Menzel, CLP
Dean Morrison Gerald Oestreich PFSC
Klaus Pache Susan Robert Dean Rubin
Jeffrey Rudin David Silverman Bob Teichman, CLP
Gary Trebels Terry Waggoner Paul Weiss 
Rosanne Wilson Rick Wilbur Edward Winston
Robert VanHellemont Bob Stephan Don & Bonnie Dulmage

(Please click on kettle to learn more)
Let’s Set a Record for 2014!



John Kenny Hanging Wall Calendars
on Facebook

Facebook Link

Home Page

The photo is on top of each month and named. Several of the collections also have sayings and expressions, such as in Clouds and The Feral Family (click on photo to see them).


Reaffirming Santa, Relocating the Elf
  Poem by Barry S. Marks, Esq.

Our little guy still believes,
so we watch what we say about Santa.
Of course, this makes a world of difference in his behavior
from Thanksgiving to Christmas morning,
when he will once again
tear into a gift-wrapped mountain beneath the tree,
his faith confirmed.

We even bought a toy elf,
who is positioned above the mantel
then moved to a new location each night.
The story is the elf snuck in through the garage door
and moves about the house, monitoring behavior
and reporting to North Pole Central –
our very own Confidential Informant.

This, too, is accepted without suspicion,
and will be until the inevitable enlightenment
of second grade, when our son learns
that his bike came from WalMart
and that his parents, television, the whole world
were lying.

That will be the first shot in our battle
to keep something of the boy a boy,
to slow the maturation
that will challenge his faith in anything
outside the realm  he can see, touch and soil.

But for now,
just for one more year, we hope,
he suffers hair brushing without complaint, 
remembers sir and ma’am
(at least occasionally),
and says his prayers without irony.

There remains a sweetness in the air tonight
as we move the elf to the bookcase
and say a word of thanks for our son’s
goodnight kisses and steady breathing.
Our little guy still believes.
Of course, that makes a world of difference.


Poems by Barry Marks, Esq.
Possible Crocodiles--collection at
a few of Barry's Poems

(Barry has a new book of poems due out the first of the year.
Leasing News hopes to publish some of them in 2015. Editor)



##### Press Release ############################

Online Desktop Spending Reaffirms Strong Holiday Season

Following Strong Cyber Week, Y/Y Growth Rate Softens
 to 12 Percent in Most Recent Week

Online Desktop Spending Season-to-Date Remains
Up 15 Percent, Still Ahead of Forecast

RESTON, VA,  – comScore (NASDAQ : SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today reported holiday season U.S. retail e-commerce spending from desktop computers for the first 44 days of the November-December 2014 holiday season. For the holiday season-to-date, $42.5 billion has been spent online, marking a 15-percent increase versus the corresponding days last year. The most recent week beginning with Green Monday (Dec. 8) posted strong growth in online sales, taking in $8.6 billion in desktop spending, up 12 percent versus year ago. For the second consecutive week, all five days of the work week reached the milestone of at least $1 billion in online desktop sales, marking the first time in history such a feat had been accomplished twice in the same holiday season.

*Corresponding days based on corresponding shopping days (November 2 thru December 15, 2013)

“Despite a slight deceleration in growth rates during this past week, we still observed strong spending in total with five more days surpassing $1 billion in sales to bring us to fourteen for the holiday season to date,” said comScore chairman emeritus Gian Fulgoni. “While it’s not uncommon for the week after Cyber Week to experience a relative lull as retailers pull back on promotions and consumers catch their breath before the final gift buying push, it is encouraging that the 15 percent spending growth rate for the season-to-date remains slightly above our forecast of 14 percent for the season as a whole. We expect early next week to experience one last surge in online buying leading up to Free Shipping Day on December 18th, after which the online holiday shopping season should start winding down.”


About comScore
comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a global leader in digital measurement and analytics, delivering insights on web, mobile and TV consumer behavior that enable clients to maximize the value of their digital investments. For more information, please visit

### Press Release ############################


Bookmark Leasing News


Fernando's View
By Fernando F. Croce

A pair of outstanding period dramas ("Inherent Vice," "Mr. Turner") come to theaters, while new DVDs offer two gentle comedies ("The Skeleton Twins," "Magic in the Moonlight") and a witty fantasy ("Time Bandits").

In Theaters:

Inherent Vice (Warner Bros.): Having examined the 1970s in his breakout movie "Boogie Nights," director Paul Thomas Anderson revisits that turbulent decade in this one-of-a-kind comedy-noir, adapted from legendarily reclusive author Thomas Pynchon's novel. Joaquin Phoenix stars as "Doc" Portello, a small-time private investigator in the seaside corner of Los Angeles, whose pot-addled life is shaken up by the appearance of a former girlfriend, Shasta (Katherine Waterston). Suddenly, Portello is thrust into a whirlwind of bizarre characters, including a tough-talking police officer (Josh Brolin), a missing tycoon (Eric Roberts), a supposedly dead musician (Owen Wilson), and a crazy dentist (Martin Short). Mixing manic humor with moments of deep melancholy, Anderson's film is a remarkable stroll through a panorama of American eccentricity.

Mr. Turner (Sony Pictures Classics): One of the greatest living directors, British filmmaker Mike Leigh ("Secrets & Lies") travels back in time in this superb study of 19th-century painter J.M.W. Turner. In a magnificent, award-winning performance, Timothy Spall plays Turner as a brilliant but troubled artist whose beautiful works contrast with a life of prickly emotions. Over the course of a couple of decades, we witness Turner's relationship with his father (Paul Jesson), his put-upon housekeeper (Dorothy Atkinson), and a seaside landlady (Marion Bailey), as well as his interactions with art patrons and critics. Gorgeously photographed in ways that often suggest lustrous oil canvases, this sprawling biopic stands as another addition to Leigh's gallery of flawed yet profoundly humanistic characters, and one of the year's best films.

Netflix Tip: "Mr. Turner" is only the latest in a long tradition of biopics about famous painters. So after you see it, check out such previous classics of the genre as "Lust for Life" (1956), "Edvard Munch" (1974), "Van Gogh" (1991), "Surviving Picasso" (1996), and "Frida" (2002).


The Skeleton Twins (Lions Gate): Ever since their days together at "Saturday Night Live," Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig have displayed a marvelous, quicksilver comic rapport. That rapport is in full view in this comedy-drama, which mixes freewheeling humor with moments of heartfelt emotion. The twins of the title are Milo (Hader) and Maggie Dean (Wiig), troubled siblings who have been apart for ten years yet find themselves reunited following a close brush with death. This leads them to reevaluate their lives, with Maggie pondering her marriage to Lance (Luke Wilson) while Milo struggles to overcome his own heartbreak. And yet, through these tough times, the two learn to comfort each other. Brimming with honest insight and engaging performances, director Craig Johnson's sleeper deserves to find a wider audience.

Magic in the Moonlight (Sony): Returning to his fascination with the romantic past, Woody Allen's latest comedy is a sumptuous stroll through 1920s Europe. Colin Firth stars as Stanley, a dapper Englishman who blends his reputation as a stage illusionist with a personal skepticism when it comes to real magic. That's when he meets Sophie (Emma Stone), a young psychic who might be using her self-proclaimed powers to mooch off other people. Determined to expose her "miracles" as trickery, Stanley instead becomes more and more beguiled by her, and a romance slowly blossoms. While it scarcely reaches the heights of Allen's previous masterpieces, the movie nevertheless displays enough charm and humor to, like its two mismatched protagonists, weave a spell of its own.

Time Bandits (Criterion): A wildly imaginative animator who got his start with the legendary British comic troupe Monty Python, Terry Gillian directed this wonderfully unpredictable 1981 fantasy. The fanciful plot kicks off as 11-year-old Kevin (Craig Warnock) discovers a time warp inside his wardrobe, which leads him to join a band of dwarves who specialize in traveling through the ages and stealing their treasures. Along the way they meet a slew of bizarre characters, from Robin Hood (John Cleese) and King Agamemnon (Sean Connery) to Napoleon (Ian Holm) and a powerful villain (David Warner). Often playing like a sly British parody of Spielbergian suburban adventures, Gilliam's movie is a boisterous and witty fable that keeps viewers consistently tickled and off-kilter.


Classified ads—Syndicator

Leasing Industry Outsourcing
(Providing Services and Products)

Outsource Lease Syndications
Add a capital markets independent contractor and offer world-class syndications (buy and/or sell) capability for commission-based compensation. 30+ Years’ experience with major lessors (BofA, Chase, Fleet, Verizon).  Sales, underwriting, capital markets and executive background. Ivy League undergrad and MBA. Well known in industry.  Impeccable references. or (203) 652-1387


All "Outsourcing" Classified ads (advertisers are both requested
and responsible to keep their free ads up to date:

How to Post a free "Outsourcing" classified ad:



News Briefs----

$100 million Sale/Leaseback ATM Ponzi scheme 

'We're Ready': OnDeck CEO on Going Public, Working with Banks

Tax Extenders Likely to Get Tiny Reprieve

$57.6 million for Countrywide whistleblower

Tech investors plowing money into future farms

14 Things Not to Buy During the Holidays




--You May Have Missed It

FedEx, UPS confront busiest holiday season on record


SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer

How to Avoid On-the-Job Weight Gain
Avoid Packing on Pounds Behind Your Desk


Football Poem

7-8 Teams

Last dance
last dance for love
yes, it's my last chance
for romance tonight

I need you, by me,
beside me, to guide me,
to hold me, to scold me,
'cause when I'm bad
I'm so, so bad

So let's dance, the last dance
let's dance, the last dance
let's dance, this last dance tonight

Last dance, last dance for love
yes, it's my last chance
for romance tonight

Oh, I need you, by me,
beside me, to guide me,
to hold me, to scold me,
'cause when I'm bad
I'm so, so bad

So let's dance, the last dance
let's dance, the last dance
let's dance, this last dance tonight

Yeah, will you be my Mr. Right?
can you fill my appetite
I can't be sure
that you're the one for me
but all that I ask
is that you dance with me
dance with me, dance with me, yeah

Oh I need you, by me,
beside me, to guide me,
to hold me, to scold me,
'cause when I'm bad
I'm so, so bad

So let's dance, this last dance
let's dance, this last dance
let's dance, this last dance tonight

Oh I need you, by me,
to beside, to guide me,
to hold me, to scold me,
'cause when I'm bad
I'm so, so bad

So, come on baby, dance that dance
come on baby, dance that dance
come on baby, let's dance tonight...

Singer and Composer:
Donna Summer



Sports Briefs----

Every Jay Cutler exit strategy is difficult, but not impossible for Bears

Report: Michigan offers Jim Harbaugh $8 million per year

Harbaugh won't comment on U-M

Four reactions to Ray McDonald’s release

Celtics agree to trade Rajon Rondo to Mavericks


Please Click on Bulletin Board to learn more information
(Leasing News provides this ad “gratis” as a means
to help support the growth of Lease Police)


California Nuts Briefs---

Sausalito dog on sinking boat swims a mile to shore, reunited with owner

24 ways to tick off a San Franciscan

Los Gatos: Residents complain about mail delivery   

Pumps dropped from Delta water tunnel plan

Ming's in Palo Alto closing Dec. 28 (but a comeback is planned)


“Gimme that Wine”

FedEx will begin shipping wine to Massachusetts on Febuary 1st

Rudy Kurniawan's private cellar could help to repay victims

The Chronicle adds a blow to Spectator’s jabs

From New York’s Finger Lakes to Michigan’s Traverse City,
lesser-known wine regions around the U.S. are gaining prominence.

Free Mobile Wine Program

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page


This Day in American History

     1606 – Three ships depart England carrying settlers who found at Jamestown, VA, the first of the thirteen colonies that became the United States.
    1675 - Colonial forces escalate King Phillip's War by burning 300 old men, women & children alive in their village, and later attack the Naragansetts in the Great Swamp, killing over 1,000 Indians. It started on June 24th with a massacre of colonists at Swansee, Plymouth, by a band of Indians. The war was started by King Philip after three of his people were executed by the English for murdering an Indian in English employ.
   1686 - Robinson Crusoe leaves his island after 28 years (so says Defoe). "& thus I left the Island, the Nineteenth of December as I found by the Ship's Account, in the Year 1686, after I had been upon it eight & twenty Years, two Months, & 19 Days; being deliver'd from this second Captivity, the same Day of the Month, that I first made my Escape in the Barco-Longo, from among the Moors of Sallee."
    1733 - “Poor Richard's Alamanack” was first published by Benjamin Franklin at Philadelphia. In continuous publication for 25 years, Franklin's “Almanack” sold on average more than 10,000 copies yearly and thus was one of the most popular writings of colonial America. Franklin was born in Boston in 1706 and was apprenticed to his brother, a printer, at age 12. In 1729, Franklin became the official printer of currency for the colony of Pennsylvania. He began publishing Poor Richard's, as well as the Pennsylvania Gazette, one of the colonies' first and best newspapers. By 1748, Franklin had become more interested in inventions and science than publishing. He spent time in London representing Pennsylvania in its dispute with England and later spent time in France. He returned to America in March 1775, with war on the horizon. He served on the Second Continental Congress and helped draft the Declaration of Independence. He was also instrumental in persuading the French to lend military assistance to the colonies. He died in Philadelphia in 1790.
    1776 - The first number of “the Crisis” by Thomas Paine, a series of pamphlets written to bolster the morale of the Continental Army, was issued. It was immortalized by its famous first sentence, “These are the times that try men's souls.”
    1777 - The Continental Army moved into encampment at Valley Forge amidst stormy winds and piercing cold. The particularly severe winter of 1777-1778 proved to be a great trial for the American army, and of the 11,000 soldiers stationed at Valley Forge, hundreds died from disease. However, the suffering troops were held together by loyalty to the Patriot cause and to General Washington, who stayed with his men. As the winter stretched on, Prussian military adviser Frederick von Steuben kept the soldiers busy with drills and training in modern military strategy. When Washington's army marched out of Valley Forge on June 19, 1778, the men were better disciplined and stronger in spirit than when they had entered. Nine days later, they won a victory against the British under Lord Cornwallis at the Battle of Monmouth in New Jersey.
    1795 – Kentucky became the first state to appropriate funds for road building.
    1813 - Fort Niagara taken by the British
    1821 - Birthday at Boston, MA of Mary Ashton Livermore, American reformer and women's suffrage leader.  She graduated from the seminary in 1836, but stayed there as a teacher for two years. In 1839, she started a job as a tutor on a Virginia plantation, and after witnessing the cruel institution of slavery, she became an abolitionist. In 1842, she left the plantation to take charge of a private school in Duxbury, MA, where she worked for three years. After The War Between The States, she devoted herself to the promotion of women’s suffrage with Lucy Stone and Julia Ward Howe, and the temperance movement, founding in Chicago in 1869 “The Agitator”.  Died May 23, 1905, at Melrose, MA.
    1823 – Georgia became the first state to require the registration of birth certificates.
    1828 – Vice President John C. Calhoun pens the “South Carolina Exposition and Protest”, protesting the Tariff of 1828.
    1842 - The United States recognized the independence of Hawaii.
    1843 – Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” is published and 6,000 copies were sold.
    1853 - Cornelius Yager of Santa Clara, California deeded one square foot of land and right of way to the Pacific and Atlantic Rail Road Company for construction of a railroad from San Jose to San Francisco.
    1854 - Allen Benjamin Wilson of Watertown, CT., received a patent for a sewing machine that could sew curving seams. The machine operated with four-motion feed, which made it possible to sew a curved seam. This revolutionized the garment industry in New England.
    1859 – Grading was begun for the Market Street Railway in San Francisco.
    1861 – The Skirmish at Blackwater Creek in central Missouri resulted in a resounding Union victory.  Union Brig Gen John Pope, in command of the District of Central Missouri, was determined to suppress Southern recruiting by Confederate Col. Franklin S. Robertson in the region. Early that morning, Pope’s forces marched toward Knob Noster, MO. Pope ordered Colonel Jefferson Davis’ brigade to the Blackwater Bridge where he was to force the bridge. Simultaneously a battalion of the 2nd Missouri Cavalry (“Merrill’s Horse”) moved northeast to complete the envelopment.  Realizing his guardsmen were in a precarious position, Robertson formed a firing line of approximately 250 men while Colonel Magoffin was detailed with several dozen men to take possession of the bridge before the Federals arrived.  It was insufficient as they were overrun by the stronger Union contingent.
    1871 - Albert L. Jones of New York City received a patent for an “improvement in paper for backing,” which he called “corrugated paper.” His patent covered corrugated sheets only and made no mention of backing or facing sheets. Later a facing sheet was applied to one side, and then to both sides, making single-face and double-face corrugated cardboard. Jones assigned his patent to the Thompson and Norris Company of Brooklyn, NY (now part of New York City), which was the first manufacturer of corrugated paper in the United States. Corrugated paper boxes came into use about 1890.
    1875 - Birthday of Carter Godwin Woodson, historian who introduced black studies to colleges and universities, born at New Canton, VA. His scholarly works included “The Negro in Our History” and “The Education of the Negro.”
    1891 – The first African-American Catholic priest in the US, Charles Uncles, was ordained in Baltimore.
    1891 - Birthday of Ford Christopher Frick at Wawaka, IN.  He was a sportswriter and a newspaperman who became Babe Ruth's ghostwriter, President of the National League, and, in 1951, Commissioner of Major League Baseball.   Many suggest that his adoration for Ruth was behind his decision in 1961 that Roger Maris' home run record would have to be categorized separately – with an asterisk - from Ruth's because the American League had lengthened its schedule from 154 to 162 games to accommodate the AL expansion into Los Angeles and Minnesota.   That asterisk was subsequently removed and Maris’ record of 61 HRs in a single season is still the standard among those who did not use performance-enhancing substances.  Frick was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1970. Died at Bronxville, NY, April 8, 1978.
    1895 - Bandleader Erskine Tate born Memphis, Tennessee.
    1899 - Paul D. “Tony” Hinkle, football coach and basketball Hall of Fame coach, was born at Logansport, IN. Hinkle was one of the giants of the coaching profession, spending all five decades of his career at Butler University. His teams won over 600 games, and over 50 of his former players became coaches. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1965. Died at Indianapolis, IN, Sept. 21, 1992.
    1903 - The first major suspension bridge in the United States -- the Williamsburg Bridge -- opened in New York City.
(lower part of: )
    1904 – The Dawson City, AK hockey team begins a 9-day walk to get a boat to Seattle to catch a train to Ottawa to play in Stanley Cup on Jan. 13, 1905.
    1907 - 239 coal miners die in a mine explosion in Jacobs Creek, PA.
    1910 - Rayon made from cellulose was commercially produced by the American Viscose Company in Marcus Hook, PA. Production in 1911 amounted to 362,000 pounds. The patents were acquired from the General Artificial Silk Company, Landsdowne, PA, who started producing the product, calling it “artificial silk.” The term “rayon” was adopted in 1924 to replace “artificial silk” and similar names.
    1910 – The first city ordinance to require white and black residential areas was passed in Baltimore.
    1911 – Trumpet Player/Band Leader Lu Watters Birthday
    1913 - Jack Johnson fights Jim Johnson to a draw in 10 rounds for the heavyweight boxing title
    1915 - Phillip D. “Phil” Woolpert, Basketball Hall of Fame coach, was born at Danville, KY. He is still talked about this day in the Bay Area. Woolpert played at Loyola University of Los Angeles, graduating in 1940, and began coaching at St. Ignatius High School in San Francisco. In 1950, he moved to the University of San Francisco where he put together one of the greatest college teams ever. Led by NBA and College Basketball Hall of Famers Bill Russell and KC Jones, the Dons won their last 26 games in 1954-55 and all 29 games in 1955-56. The won consecutive NCAA titles, too. Woolpert resigned in 1958-59 but later coached in the American Basketball League and at the University of San Diego. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992. Died at Sequim, WA, May 5, 1987.
    1917 - Singer Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson born Houston, Texas. Died July 2, 1988
    1917 - The National Hockey League opened its first season of play with two games. The Montreal Canadians defeated the Ottawa Senators, 7-4, with Joe Malone scoring five goals, and the Montreal Wanderers beat the Toronto Arenas, 10-9, with Harry Hyland scoring five goals. Despite their victory, the Wanderers lasted only six games, withdrawing from the league when the Montreal Arena burned down.  This was also the first time hockey was played on artificial ice…was the Zamboni far behind?
    1918 - Birthday of pianist Professor Longhair, Bogalusa, LA
    1918 - Robert Ripley's newspaper cartoon of unusual, hard-to-believe facts from around the world was first published in the New York Globe. Ripley first planned to call the cartoon "Chumps and Champs" as it originally involved sport feats, but decided instead on "Believe It Or Not!"
    1924 - Birthday of Edward “Rex” Barney, baseball public address announcer and former baseball player, at Omaha, NE.   As a teenage phenom, Barney was signed by the Dodgers at the age of 18, in 1943. He was one of the hardest throwers in the league but struggled with wildness early in his career.  Barney nevertheless won 15 games in 1948 for the Brooklyn Dodgers and pitched a no-hitter against the New York Giants. After retiring, he was much beloved as the public address announcer for the Baltimore Orioles. He rewarded spectators who caught foul balls by saying, “Give that fan a contract,” and he concluded every announcement with a dramatic “Thaaaaaak youuuuuu”.  Died at Baltimore, MD, August 12, 1997
    1924 - The Riverside Ranger Station in Yellowstone Park, WY, reported a low of 59 degrees below zero, a December record for the U.S.
    1924 – Comedian, actor Gary Morton, also Lucille Ball’s second husband, was born in NYC.  Morton died in Palm Springs, CA in 1999.       
    1926 - Birthday of Robert Lawrence “Bobby” Layne, Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback, at Santa Ana, Texas. Layne starred at the University of Texas before and after serving the Merchant Marines during World War II. As a pro, he led the Detroit Lions to the NFL title in 1952, 1953, and 1957. His flamboyant leadership on the field was matched by a boisterous off-the-field lifestyle. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1967.  Died at Lubbock, Texas on December 1, 1986.
    1926 – Game show contestant Herb Stempel was born in The Bronx.  He was the whistleblower on the fraudulent nature of the industry. His rigged six-week appearance as a winning contestant on the 1950s show “Twenty One” ended in an equally rigged defeat by Charles Van Doren.
    1933 – Actress Cicely Tyson was born in Harlem.  She was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress and the Golden Globe Award for her performance in “Sounder” (1972). For this role she also won the NFSC Best Actress Award and NBR Best Actress Awards. She starred in “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman” (1974), for which she won two Emmy awards and was nominated for a BAFTA Award.  During her career she has been nominated for eleven Primetime Emmy Awards, winning three.
    1934 – Baseball Hall of Famer and “Mr. Tiger”, Al Kaline was born in Baltimore.  In 1955, at age 20, Kaline ended the season with a .340 batting average, becoming the youngest player ever to win the AL batting title. No 20-year-old major league player had won a batting title since Ty Cobb in 1907. In that season, Kaline became the 13th man in major league history to hit two HRs in the same inning, became the youngest to hit three home runs in one game, and finished the year with 200 hits, 27 home runs and 102 RBIs. He also finished second to Yogi Berra in the American League's 1955 MVP voting. He was selected to the All-Star Game, the first in a string of consecutive All-Star selections that lasted through 1967.  Kaline played his entire 22-year baseball career with the Tigers, mainly in RF where he won ten Gold Gloves and was known for his strong throwing arm.  Kaline ended his career with 3007 hits.
    1935 - Birthday of piano player Bobby Timmons, Philadelphia, PA
    1936 - Barney Bigard recorded “Caravan” in Los Angeles (Variety 515).
    1940 - Birthday of guitarist/song writer Phil Ochs, El Paso, Texas.
    1941 - To control information pertaining to World War II, the US Office of Censorship was created.
    1941 - Birthday of Maurice White (of Radiants/Earth-Wind-Fire) Memphis, TN
    1944 - At a meeting of senior Allied commanders, Eisenhower decides to appoint Field Marshal Montgomery, commanding British 21st Army Group, to lead all Allied forces to the north of " the Bulge" in the line created by the German attack. General Bradley, commanding US 12th Army Group, is responsible for all Allied forces to the south. Historians suggest that one of Eisenhower’s great accomplishments of the war was managing the petulant and aristocratic Montgomery into keeping focus on the tasks at hand rather than the trappings of his rank.  The arrangement is not made public at this time.
    1944 - FLUCKEY, EUGENE BENNETT, Medal of Honor.
Rank and organization: Commander, U.S. Navy, Commanding U.S.S. Barb. Place and date: Along coast of China, 19 December 1944 to 15 February 1945. Entered service at: Illinois. Born: S October 1913, Washington, D.C. Other Navy award: Navy Cross with 3 Gold Stars. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Barb during her 11th war patrol along the east coast of China from 19 December 1944 to 15 February 1945. After sinking a large enemy ammunition ship and damaging additional tonnage during a running 2-hour night battle on 8 January, Comdr. Fluckey, in an exceptional feat of brilliant deduction and bold tracking on 25 January, located a concentration of more than 30 enemy ships in the lower reaches of Nankuan Chiang (Mamkwan Harbor). Fully aware that a safe retirement would necessitate an hour's run at full speed through the uncharted, mined, and rock-obstructed waters, he bravely ordered, "Battle station--torpedoes!" In a daring penetration of the heavy enemy screen, and riding in 5 fathoms of water, he launched the Barb's last forward torpedoes at 3,000-yard range. Quickly bringing the ship's stern tubes to bear, he turned loose 4 more torpedoes into the enemy, obtaining 8 direct hits on 6 of the main targets to explode a large ammunition ship and cause inestimable damage by the resultant flying shells and other pyrotechnics. Clearing the treacherous area at high speed, he brought the Barb through to safety and 4 days later sank a large Japanese freighter to complete a record of heroic combat achievement, reflecting the highest credit upon Comdr. Fluckey, his gallant officers and men, and the U.S. Naval Service.
    1944 - GERSTUNG, ROBERT E., Medal of Honor.
Rank and organization: Technical Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company H, 313th Infantry, 79th Infantry Division. Place and date: Siegfried Line near Berg, Germany, 19 December 1944. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Born: 6 August 1915, Chicago, Ill. G.O. No.: 75, 5 September 1945. Citation: On 19 December 1944 he was ordered with his heavy machinegun squad to the support of an infantry company attacking the outer defense of the Siegfried Line near Berg, Germany. For 8 hours he maintained a position made almost untenable by the density of artillery and mortar fire concentrated upon it and the proximity of enemy troops who threw hand grenades into the emplacement. While all other members of his squad became casualties, he remained at his gun. When he ran out of ammunition, he fearlessly dashed across bullet-swept, open terrain to secure a new supply from a disabled friendly tank. A fierce barrage pierced the water jacket of his gun, but he continued to fire until the weapon overheated and jammed. Instead of withdrawing, he crawled 50 yards across coverless ground to another of his company's machineguns which had been silenced when its entire crew was killed. He continued to man this gun, giving support vitally needed by the infantry. At one time he came under direct fire from a hostile tank, which shot the glove from his hand with an armor-piercing shell but could not drive him from his position or stop his shooting. When the American forces were ordered to retire to their original positions, he remained at his gun, giving the only covering fire. Finally withdrawing, he cradled the heavy weapon in his left arm, slung a belt of ammunition over his shoulder, and walked to the rear, loosing small bursts at the enemy as he went. One hundred yards from safety, he was struck in the leg by a mortar shell; but, with a supreme effort, he crawled the remaining distance, dragging along the gun which had served him and his comrades so well. By his remarkable perseverance, indomitable courage, and heroic devotion to his task in the face of devastating fire, T/Sgt. Gerstung gave his fellow soldiers powerful support in their encounter with formidable enemy forces.
    1945 - KIMBRO, TRUMAN,  Medal of Honor.
Rank and organization: Technician Fourth Grade, U.S. Army, Company C, 2d Engineer Combat Battalion, 2d Infantry Division. Place and date: Near Rocherath, Belgium, 19 December 1944. Entered service at: Houston, Tex. Birth: Madisonville, Tex. G.O. No.: 42, 24 May 1945. Citation: On 19 December 1944, as scout, he led a squad assigned to the mission of mining a vital crossroads near Rocherath, Belgium. At the first attempt to reach the objective, he discovered it was occupied by an enemy tank and at least 20 infantrymen. Driven back by withering fire, Technician 4th Grade Kimbro made 2 more attempts to lead his squad to the crossroads but all approaches were covered by intense enemy fire. Although warned by our own infantrymen of the great danger involved, he left his squad in a protected place and, laden with mines, crawled alone toward the crossroads. When nearing his objective he was severely wounded, but he continued to drag himself forward and laid his mines across the road. As he tried to crawl from the objective his body was riddled with rifle and machinegun fire. The mines laid by his act of indomitable courage delayed the advance of enemy armor and prevented the rear of our withdrawing columns from being attacked by the enemy.
    1946 - War broke out in Indochina as Ho Chi Minh attacked the French in Hanoi.
    1946 – “Dan Tanna”, actor Robert Urich, was born in Toronto, OH.  In addition to that role in the series, “Vega$”, Urich had a solid TV and film career that was cut short by cancer from which he died in 2002.
    1948 - Top Hits 
“Buttons and Bows” - Dinah Shore 
“On a Slow Boat to China” - The Kay Kaiser Orchestra (vocal: Harry Babbitt & Gloria Wood 
“White Christmas” - Bing Crosby 
“One Has My Name (The Other Has My Heart)” - Jimmy Wakely
    1948 – In the All-American Football Conference (AAFC) penultimate title game, the Cleveland Browns defeated the Buffalo Bills, 49-7.  The AAFC was founded by Chicago tribune sports editor Arch Ward on June 4, 1944. Ward was also the originator of baseball’s All-Star Game and football’s College All-Star Game.  The league initially issued franchises for Buffalo, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco. Brooklyn and Miami were later added.  The AAFC was ultimately unable to sustain itself in competition with the NFL. Three of its teams were admitted to the NFL: the San Francisco 49ers, Cleveland Browns, and the Baltimore Colts (not related to the later second Colts team that would play in Baltimore in the old NFL from 1953 through 1983). The Browns were the AAFC's most successful club, having won every annual championship in the league's four years of operation among ten consecutive championships across both leagues.
    1948 – In the NFL title game, the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Chicago Cardinals, 7-0.
    1949 - Birthday of trombone player Bob Brookmeyer, Kansas City Mo.
    1949 - Birthday of drummer Lenny White, Jamaica, NY 
    1955 - Carl Perkins records "Blue Suede Shoes", a song that he wrote after seeing a young man get angry at his date for scuffing his shoes. Even though we often remember the Elvis Presley version the most, it only made it to number 20 on the US chart, while was Perkins' original went to number 2. 
    1956 - Elvis Presley made US chart history by having 10 songs on Billboard's Top 100. 
    1956 - Top Hits 
“Singing the Blues” - Guy Mitchell 
“Blueberry Hill” - Fats Domino 
“Since I Met You Baby” - Ivory Joe Hunter 
“Singing the Blues” - Marty Robbins
    1957 - A tornado, 200 yards in width, killed two persons along its 15-mile path from near Waldo to near Buena Vista in southwestern Arkansas. People from one house were carried 250 yards, and cars were said to have been carried 600 yards.
    1957 - Meredith Wilson's musical, "The Music Man", opened at New York City's Majestic Theatre. The show starred Robert Preston and enjoyed a 1,375 show run.  The band included 76 trombones and 101 cornets.
    1960 - RCA Victor Records released Neil Sedaka's "Calendar Girl". The song would be Sedaka's fourth record to make the charts. Other hits, among over 500 songs that he wrote or co-wrote, include: "The Diary", "Stairway to Heaven", "Bad Girl", "Next Door to an Angel", "Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen", "Laughter in the Rain" and "Breaking Up is Hard to Do".  He wrote scores of songs for others, including Connie Francis, Gene Pitney, The Monkees, The Captain & Tenille, and Jimmy Clanton that became hits.  Somehow, by some logic, Neil Sedaka is not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
    1960 - Frank Sinatra recorded his first session with his own record company, Reprise Records. Recorded that day were "Ring-A-Ding-Ding" and "Let's Fall in Love".
    1961 - In New York City, "Judgment at Nuremberg" opened with a star-studded cast including Spencer Tracy, Burt Lancaster, Richard Widmark, Montgomery Clift, Judy Garland, Marlene Dietrich, and Maximillian Schell who won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance in the film. The film would also receive an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay as well as nine other nominations.
    1961 - Green Bay Packer and Philadelphia Eagles great DE Reginald Howard “Reggie” White birthday, Chattanooga, TN.
    1961 - After reaching #15 with "Tonight I Fell In Love" earlier in the year, a Brooklyn, New York group called The Tokens scored the top tune in the US with "The Lion Sleeps Tonight". 
    1963 – Actress Jennifer Beals was born in Chicago.
    1964 - "Come See About Me", the third release from The Supremes album "Where Did Our Love Go", becomes their third straight US number one single.
    1964 - Top Hits 
“Come See About Me” - The Supremes 
“I Feel Fine” - The Beatles 
“Goin' Out of My Head” - Little Anthony & The Imperials 
“Once a Day” - Connie Smith
    1966 - Nancy Sinatra's "Sugar Town" entered the Billboard chart, where it would reach #5.
    1967 - A record 83 inches of snow covered the ground at Flagstaff, AZ. The heavy snows inflicted great hardships on reservations. 
    1968 - My son, Dashiell Leslie Menkin, was born in San Francisco, California. The middle name comes from the name of his mother's father, known as "Red," for his red hair. Dashiell comes
from my favorite mystery writer. I am very proud of my son who served in the US Navy!!! He is a real patriot.
    1970 - Elton John's first US hit, "Your Song" enters the Billboard Hot 100, where it will reach number eight. An excellent version of the tune had already been recorded by Three Dog Night for their "It Ain't Easy" album, but they didn't issue it as a single. 
    1971 - Houston safety Ken Houston returns two interceptions for touchdowns in the Oilers' 49-33 victory over San Diego to set the NFL career record with nine touchdowns on interception returns. He also sets the single-season record with four interception return touchdowns. 
    1972 - The Apollo lunar-landing program ends when the last three astronauts to travel to the moon splash down safely in the Pacific Ocean.  During the Apollo 17 mission, astronauts Eugene A. Cernan and Harrison H. Schmitt stayed for a record 75 hours on the surface of the moon, conducting three separate surface excursions in the Lunar Rover vehicle and collecting 243 pounds of rock and soil samples. Although Apollo 17 was the last lunar landing, the last official Apollo mission was conducted in July 1975, when an Apollo spacecraft successfully rendezvoused and docked with the Soviet Soyuz 19 spacecraft in orbit around the Earth. It was fitting that the Apollo program, which first visited the moon under the banner of "We came in peace for all mankind," should end on a note of peace and international cooperation.
    1972 - Top Hits 
Me and Mrs. Jones - Billy Paul 
You Ought to Be with Me - Al Green 
It Never Rains in Southern California - Albert Hammond 
Got the All Overs for You (All Over Me) - Freddie Hart & The Heartbeats
    1973 - Johnny Carson pulled a prank in front a nationwide, late-night NBC audience. Carson started a false toilet-paper scare when, in his "Tonight Show" monologue, he said a Wisconsin congressman warned toilet paper would disappear from supermarket shelves. In many parts of the United States, toilet paper soon became a scarce after the gag.
    1974 – Continuing the fallout from Watergate, Nelson A Rockefeller was sworn-in as the 41st Vice-President.   On August 9, President Nixon resigned and Gerald R. Ford was sworn in as the 38th president of the United States. On August 20, Rockefeller, former governor of New York, was nominated for the vice-presidency by President Ford.  Presidents who served, but were never elected:
Chester A. Arthur 
Millard Fillmore 
Gerald R. Ford 
Andrew Johnson 
John Tyler
Presidents who never had a vice-president:
Chester A. Arthur 
Millard Fillmore 
Andrew Johnson 
John Tyler
* The 25th Amendment now requires Presidents to nominate a new Vice President
    1974 - The first personal computer was the Altair 8800, sold in kit form. Sales took off when it was featured on the cover of the January, 1975 issue of Popular Electronics magazine. It was developed by Edward Roberts at Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems (MITS) of Albuquerque, NM.   The kit cost $397. The first personal computer that was commercially successful was the Commodore PET, developed by Commodore Business Machines of Westchester, PA, and marketed to the consumers beginning early 1977. It sold for $595. Nolan Bushnell developed a small personal computer, but thought it would not take off and wanted to stay ahead of Japan and others in the game business, when Steven Jobs brought it to Steven Wozniack to copy and Apple Computer, Cupertino, CA, was born.  Historians considered this the first successful PC, released the same year, aiming their market at schools and later opening up their own retail stores. Leading Edge, Osborne, Eagle and many other computers grew using the Windows operating system while IBM introduced their own proprietary operating system along with PIC, which was the most popular at the time for business use of personal computer systems.
    1976 - As if Disco wasn't bad enough, the US Pop chart reaches a new all-time low when "Convoy" by C.W. McCall earns a Gold record. The novelty tune tells the story of interstate truck drivers and their run-ins with the law.     
   1979 - Elvis Presley's personal physician, George Nichopoulos, was charged with "illegally and indiscriminately" prescribing over 12,000 tablets of uppers, downers, and painkillers for the rock and roll star during the 20 months preceding his untimely death.  
    1979 - Chrysler gets first bail out. In July, company chairman John J. Ricardo announced that Chrysler had posted second-quarter losses in the neighborhood of $200 million. However, the struggling auto giant received a generous Christmas present on December 19, as the Senate green lighted a $1.5 billion loan to help put the company back on its feet. In the short term, though, the loan did little to staunch the bleeding: 1980 saw Chrysler rack-up record losses of well over $1.7 billion.
    1980 - Top Hits 
“Lady” - Kenny Rogers 
“More Than I Can Say” - Leo Sayer 
“(Just Like) Starting Over” - John Lennon 
“Why Lady Why” - Alabama
    1980 - The comedy film “Nine To Five”, starring Dolly Parton in her first major movie role, Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, and Dabney Coleman, opens nationally in the US.
    1984 - Twenty-three year old Wayne Gretsky, of the Edmonton Oilers, led his hockey team over the Los Angeles Kings 7-3. He scored two goals and racked up four assists, becoming the 18th player in the National Hockey League to score over than 1,000 points.
    1988 - Top Hits 
“Look Away” - Chicago 
“Every Rose Has Its Thorn” - Poison 
“Giving You the Best That I Got” - Anita Baker 
“A Tender Lie” - Restless Heart
    1997 – Titanic”, James Cameron's movie epic, was released across the United States. At more than three hours long, and a $200 million production price, critics anticipated that it would fail miserably. However, the "most expensive film ever", made with state-of-the-art technology, wowed audiences of all ages, and quickly became the top box-office champ for a film longer than 3 hours.
    1998 - Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott is named "Man of the Year" by the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC), alleged to be a “racist” organization, made up of many Ku Klux Klan members.
    1998 - House of Representatives approved two articles of impeachment charging President Clinton with lying under oath to a federal grand jury and obstructing justice.
    2011 - Samsung Electronics files a patent infringement claim against Apple in Germany.  They have been at it ever since.
    2012 - UBS becomes the second bank after Barclays, to be fined for attempting to manipulate the Libor interbank lending rate; the company is fined $1.5 billion
    2013 - A data breach at Target Corporation caused the security of 40 million credit and debit cards used at Target stores to be compromised



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