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Leasing News is a website that posts information, news, and
entertainment for the commercial alternate financing,
bank, finance and leasing industries

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Today's Leasing News Headlines

Looking to Improve Your Career
   Post a Free Position Wanted Here
Top Leasing News Stories
   January 3 – January 8
$100 Million Primarily Merchant Cash Advance
   Charge Off Deals Purchased by TBF Financial
National Account Managers Wanted
   Seeking Experienced Vendor Focused
Career Enhancement
  Sales Makes it Happen by Scott Wheeler, CLFP
Study Finds People Have More Sex
   When Medical Marijuana is Legalized
Improved Tax Withholding Estimator
     shows how to fill out new 2020 W-4
Ascentium Capital Reports 22.3% YOY Growth
   in Funded Volume over Last Year; $1.50 Billion
Preliminary Used Class 8 Truck Volumes
   and Prices Rise M/M
Uncut Gems/Little Women/Ad Astra
  The Fugitive Kind/La Petite Soldat
    Film/Digital Reviews from Leasing News’ Fernando Croce
   Deerfield, Illinois Adopt a Dog
Asset-Based Capital Conference 2020
   February 4-5, Las Vegas, Nevada
News Briefs---
Innovation Finance rolls out QuickFi mobile-first
   equipment finance solution to global acclaim
Velocity Truck Centers Acquires Central California Truck
   And Trailer Sales
JPMorgan garners $8.5B profit
    confusion over Jamie Dimon’s future
    Surpasses 500 Registered Attendees

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (wrilter's columns)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months (Be Careful of Doing Business)
Leasing News Icon for Android Mobile Device

May Have Missed
  Sports Brief----
   California Nuts Brief---
    "Gimme that Wine"
     This Day in History
       Daily Puzzle
         Weather, USA or specific area
          Traffic Live----

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

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Looking to Improve Your Career
   Post a Free Position Wanted Here

Free Career Positon Wanted goes into our Classified Ad section here

It also runs once a week in the News Edition.

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Top Leasing News Stories
January 3 – January 8

(Stories most opened by readers)

(1)Ascentium Capital/Balboa Capital Karma
Major Default Case Blows Up

   By Christopher Menkin

(2) Leasing News Person of the Year 2019
Monica Harper, Executive Director
American Association of Commercial Finance Brokers

(3)Monica Harper reacts to
        Person of Year award

(4)New Hires/Promotions in the Leasing Business
and Related Industries

(5) Fleck Joins Channel Partners Capital
       to Lead New EF Group

(6) Interim Rent
   Leasing 102 by Terry Winders, CLP

(7) If You Are Knocked Down…
    By Paul Harvey, Late News Commentator

(8)The Largest Militaries in the World
   Countries with Available Active Military Manpower 2019

(9) Don’t abbreviate 2020 when signing documents, police warn.
      It can be used against you

 (10) States where marijuana
            is legal




Help Wanted




$100 Million Primarily Merchant Cash Advance
Charge Off Deals Purchased by TBF Financial


TBF Financial, Deerfield, Illinois, reports closing transactions in December totaling $100 million. They state the three largest deals were with a leading e-commerce company that acquired and liquidated a merchant cash advance business, a captive leasing company that provides financing for transportation equipment and other assets, and one of the 20 largest banks in the nation.

Brett Boehm, CEO, said, “Commercial debt sales by FinTech lenders, equipment leasing companies and banks are on the rise, with major companies striking deals to sell non-performing loans, leases and merchant cash advances after charge-off.”
“One reason for the rise in commercial debt selling is the tremendous growth of online alternative lenders,” he explains. “As their business originations have increased, so have the number of accounts that eventually default. By selling commercial debt at charge-off instead of spending years trying to collect it, they can put that money back into making loans and merchant cash advances where they generate a much better return.”

“Other lenders and lessors also recognize that it is more productive to concentrate on their core business rather than chase collections past charge-off,” he adds. “Selling commercial debt provides immediate cash and allows collections personnel to focus on accounts that are more likely to be recovered, earlier in the past-due cycle.”

While the December deals may additionally reflect the eagerness of companies to bring in cash before year’s end, Boehm says prospective deals in the pipeline remain high in January, and he anticipates a busy first quarter 2020.



Career Enhancement

Sales Makes it Happen by Scott Wheeler, CLFP

Originators in the commercial equipment leasing and finance industry are constantly moving forward, improving their skill sets, and increasing their personal value in the market. Top originators take every opportunity to enhance their careers. They are willing to invest in themselves on a daily basis. They are constantly learning.

The industry is in a transformation mode; and professionals are maintaining relevancy by engaging in change and enhancing their personal careers.

How will you improve your career in 2020?

  • Will you assume more responsibility within your company?
  • Will you mentor others?
  • Will you develop a Plan and work you Plan daily? 
  • Will you seek out educational experiences (attend association conferences, sit for your CLFP, enroll in a MBA program)?
  • Will you commit to larger projects and close more key accounts?
  • Will you improve your time management skills?
  • Will you invest in understanding financial analysis so that you can better understand credit underwriting? 
  • Will you take the time to learn technology?

Careers are enhanced through personal commitment. Don't be satisfied; strive to reach your next level of success. 

Invest in Yourself 

Scott A. Wheeler, CLFP
Wheeler Business Consulting
1314 Marquis Ct.
Fallston, Maryland 21047
Phone: 410 877 0428
Fax: 410 877 8161

Sales Makes it Happen articles:


Study Finds People Have More Sex
When Medical Marijuana is Legalized

A recent study by the University of Connecticut and Georgia State University found that medical marijuana legalization seems to be encouraging people to engage more in sexual activities. The researchers also found that since medical marijuana policies were enacted, there has been a decrease in the consumption of contraceptives, and an increase in the number of children born.

To figure out how marijuana laws influence sexual activity in people, the researchers analyzed data collected between 1997 and 2011. The analyzed data included responses to questions about sexual activities and drug consumption. The poll asked the participants about their cannabis consumption and sex frequency.

After analyzing the data, the researchers found that there was a 4.3% increase in the likelihood of the respondents participating in sexual activities in the past one month once a medical marijuana law was enacted and an increase in sex immediately after the law change.

The change in marijuana laws caused a two percent increase in the number of births, which means that each quarter there are more than 684 births for all women who can bear children.

The authors wrote that the results of the analysis provide evidence of the fact that marijuana consumption has a significant, unplanned, and positive impact on the number of children born. The paper was published in the Journal of Health Economics in December 2019.

The researchers also touch on the sensory impact of marijuana. Weed consumption alters people’s attitudes towards risky behaviors, making them less concerned about the outcome of sexual activities, and this possibly results in the reduced use of contraceptives.

The alteration of people’s behaviors explains the reason behind increased birthrates when people have access to medical marijuana even though the study authors explained that weed has physiological effects that could cause a decrease in fertility.

The researchers further wrote that the increase in the birthrate might be attributed to the fact that behavioral factors can override the physiological effects of marijuana consumption.

The study concludes that the enactment of medical marijuana laws leads to increased sexual activity and reduced use of contraceptives amongst sexually active individuals. These behavioral responses may be due to the effects of enhanced attention on sexual contact after weed consumption and the willingness to participate in sexual activities as well as ignoring the outcome of engaging in any sexual activity.

A recent survey conducted by Lioness showed that marijuana could intensify sexual pleasure and increase libido for both men and women.

Experts say that the study findings highlight the far-reaching benefits of marijuana that sector players like Willow Biosciences Inc. (CSE: WLLW) (OTCQB: CANSF) and The Supreme Cannabis Company Inc. (TSX.V: FIRE) (OTCQX: SPRWF) hint at as they recommend the full legalization of pot.



Improved Tax Withholding Estimator
helps workers target the refund they want
shows how to fill out new 2020 W-4

IRS YouTube Videos:
IRS Tax Withholding EstimatorEnglish | Spanish

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service has launched a new and improved Tax Withholding Estimator, designed to help workers target the refund they want by having the right amount of federal income tax taken out of their pay.

The Tax Withholding Estimator, now available on, incorporates the changes from the redesigned Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Certificate, that employees can fill out and give to their employers this year.

The IRS urges everyone to see if they need to adjust their withholding by using the Tax Withholding Estimator to perform a Paycheck Checkup. If an adjustment is needed, the Tax Withholding Estimator gives specific recommendations on how to fill out their employer’s online Form W-4 or provides the PDF form with key parts filled out.

To help workers more effectively adjust their withholding, the improved Tax Withholding Estimator features a customized refund slider that allows users to choose the refund amount they prefer from a range of different refund amounts. The exact refund range shown is customized based on the tax information entered by that user.

Based on the refund amount selected, the Tax Withholding Estimator will give the worker specific recommendations on how to fill out their W-4. This new feature allows users who seek either larger refunds at the end of the year or more money on their paychecks throughout the year to have just the right amount withheld to meet their preference.

The new Tax Withholding Estimator also features several other enhancements, including one allowing anyone who expects to receive a bonus to indicate whether tax will be withheld. In addition, improvements added last summer continue to be available, including mobile-friendly design, handling of pension income, Social Security benefits and self-employment tax.

Starting in 2020, income tax withholding is no longer based on an employee’s marital status and withholding allowances, tied to the value of the personal exemption. Instead, income tax withholding is generally based on the worker’s expected filing status and standard deduction for the year. In addition, workers can choose to have itemized deductions, the Child Tax Credit and other tax benefits reflected in their withholding for the year.

It is important for people with more than one job at a time (including families in which both spouses work) to adjust their withholding to avoid having too little withheld. Using the Tax Withholding Estimator is the most accurate way to do this. As in the past, employees can also choose to have an employer withhold an additional flat-dollar amount each pay period to cover, for example, income they receive from the gig economy, self-employment, or other sources that is not subject to withholding.

For more information about the updated Tax Withholding Estimator and the redesigned 2020 Form W-4, visit



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

Ascentium Capital Reports 22.3% YOY Growth
in Funded Volume over Last Year; $1.50 Billion

Ascentium Capital LLC  reported $1.50 billion in funded volume, representing a 22.3% increase over last year. Highlights for the Company during 2019 included:

  • Managed $2.43 billion in assets representing 20% growth
  • Closed a $398 million securitization featuring AAA and Aaa ratings
  • Maintained rank as the largest private-independent equipment finance company
  • Achieved $6.2 billion in originations since 2011

Chief Executive Officer at Ascentium Capital, Tom Depping, said, “We had a strong end to another record year. This is the outcome of our intense client focus which produces organic growth as well as repeat business growth across our business. These achievements combined with our leading position in equipment financing sets us up for continued operational success,”

Since 2011, to drive growth, Ascentium Capital has been committed to the allocation of resources to support key industries membership in associations. This includes sponsoring efforts for the CLFP (Certified Leasing and Financing Processionals) Foundation. Ascentium currently has 47 employees with the CLFP certification.

Additionally, the Company facilitates an intensive three-day sales training course for newly hired personnel. This focus on continuous professional advancement assists in recruiting talent and financial sales representatives across the United States.

Ascentium will continue to expand its national footprint throughout 2020.

Richard Baccaro, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, commented, “The Company’s ability to achieve consistent performance demonstrates the strength of our finance platform and the deepening of business relationships that clients demand.

“Looking ahead, we see the continued strength of our offering and a large market opportunity enabling Team Ascentium to reach new milestones in 2020,” he added.

As a direct lender, Ascentium Capital LLC specializes in providing a broad range of financing, leasing and small business loans. The Company's offering benefits equipment manufacturers and distributors as well as direct to businesses nationwide. Ascentium Capital is backed by the strength of leading investment firm Warburg Pincus LLC. For more information, please visit

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



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

Preliminary Used Class 8 Truck Volumes
and Prices Rise M/M

COLUMBUS, IN – Preliminary used Class 8 volumes (same dealer sales) increased 8% month-over-month in the final month of 2019, according to the latest preliminary release of the State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks published by ACT Research, but longer-term, volumes dropped 3% compared to December of 2018. Year-to-date preliminary volumes dropped 14%.

Other data released in ACT’s preliminary report included month-over-month comparisons for December 2019, which showed that average prices dropped 1%, average miles increased 2%, and average age contracted 2% compared to November 2019.

ACT’s Classes 3-8 Used Truck Report provides data on the average selling price, miles, and age based on a sample of industry data. In addition, the report provides the average selling price for top-selling Class 8 models for each of the major truck OEMs – Freightliner (Daimler); Kenworth and Peterbilt (Paccar); International (Navistar); and Volvo and Mack (Volvo). This report is utilized by those throughout the industry, including commercial vehicle dealers to gain a better understanding of the used truck market, especially as it relates to changes in near-term performance.

According to Steve Tam, Vice President at ACT Research, “As we begin reporting on used truck activity for the last month of 2019, we also start to look ahead to what 2020 is likely to bring.” He continued, “While the New Year will probably not be a mirror image of last year, we believe pricing will improve in the second half of the year, but remind those in the industry that ‘improve’ means ‘become less negative’.” Tam explained that for this to happen, excess, idle and underutilized trucks will need to be put back to work.

Commenting on individual market channel volumes, Tam noted, “The retail and wholesale markets both showed short-term improvements, up 5% and 36%, respectively, while the auction market fell 28% m/m. Longer term, the retail market rose 2% y/y, but the auction and wholesale markets both reported declines, falling 26% and 8% y/y, respectively. All three were down year-to-date.”

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


Fernando's View
By Fernando F. Croce

A pair of acclaimed dramas (“Uncut Gems,” “Little Women”) make for a contrasting manic-cozy double bill, while DVD releases offer grave science-fiction (“Ad Astra”), moody poetry (“The Fugitive Kind”), and stimulation espionage (“Le Petit Soldat”).

In theaters:

Uncut Gems (A24): Writer-directors Josh and Benie Safdie (“Good Time”) cement their reputation as current cinema’s premier purveyors of chaotic adrenaline with this breathless ride through the seedy underbelly of human nature. Adam Sandler etches an astonishing portrait of charisma and desperation as Howard Ratner, a jewelry owner who, addicted to the sheer gambling rush of difficult situations, finds himself constantly juggling family, rivals, and gangsters. When a priceless African gem ends up in the hands of basketball star Kevin Garnett, Howard must retrieve it for an upcoming action while his scrambling to find time for his wife (Idina Menzel) and mistress (Julia Fox). With his life on the line, are the stakes this time too high? A sustained blast of desperation, suspense, humor and unexpected poignancy, this is a frenzied marvel.

Little Women (Sony): Louisa May Alcott’s often-filmed novel gets another cinematic incarnation in this plush, heartfelt version directed by Greta Gerwig (“Lady Bird”). Set in the wake of the Civil War, it follows the lives of the March girls. Jo (Saoirse Ronan) is a headstrong aspiring writer, while Meg (Emma Watson) is more concerned about her upcoming wedding. Amy (Florence Pugh), the youngest sister, reveals a passion for art, and Beth (Eliza Scanlen) develops a bond with their lonely neighbor, Mr. Laurence (Chris Cooper). Bringing her personal touch to the familiar material by scrambling timelines and encouraging snappy dialogue, Gerwig gives the story an engaging, poignant, fresh new coat. Others in the sparkling cast include Laura Dern as Marmee, Timothée Chalamet as Laurie, and Meryl Streep as Aunt March.


Ad Astra (Twentieth-Century Fox): Having recently explored the past, director James Gray (“The Lost City of Z”) heads for the future in this ambitious sci-fi mood piece, which has shades of “Interstellar” and “First Man.” The human center of its celestial vastness is Roy McBride (Brad Pitt), an astronaut whose new mission finds him leading a bold mission far into the solar system, tasked with installing an antenna made to investigate a mysterious surge emanating from Neptune. As with other recent space journeys, however, the celestial setting is only a backdrop for a search into the protagonist’s intimate emotions—namely the aloofness that has cost Roy his wife (Liv Tyler), and the possibility that his missing father (Tommy Lee Jones) is still alive. Vivid visuals and poignancy mingle in Gray’s grave space opera.

The Fugitive Kind (Criterion): Two acting legends, Marlon Brando and Anna Magnani, team up in this moody 1960 adaptation of Tennessee Williams’ play “Orpheus Descending.” Brando stars as Valentine Xavier, a drifter on the run from the law who takes residence in a small town. There he becomes involved with a pair of very different women—a freewheeling libertine named Carol (Joanne Woodward), and Lady Torrance (Magnani), the older owner of a local store married to a paralyzed bully (Victor Jory). Trying to find sensitivity and fulfillment in an often vicious world, the characters passionately cling to each other even as they spin inexorably toward tragedy. An early effort by dynamic director Sidney Lumet (“Dog Day Afternoon”), the film beautifully captures Williams’ heady atmosphere of poetry and violence.

Le Petit Soldat (Criterion): French New Wave trailblazer Jean-Luc Godard followed his enormously influential feature debut “Breathless” with this controversial, inventive 1963 film. Set during the Algerian War and unfolding like a dry send-up of a thriller, it focuses on Bruno (Michel Subor), a young man working in Geneva as a secret assassin for French intelligence. His latest mission, working against Algerian revolutionaries, is complicated when he falls in love with Veronica (Anna Karina), a beautiful woman with mysterious connections. What follows is a twisty welter of intrigue, torture, and literary references. Banned in its own country due to its critique of colonialism, Godard’s visceral film captivates both as an analytical autopsy of espionage filmmaking and as a snapshot of politics and relationships. With subtitles.


Deerfield, Illinois Adopt a Dog

Monty the three-year-old Chihuahua/Dachshund mix is a little bundle of energy. You haven’t seen zoomies until you’ve seen Monty sprinting around the Enrichment Park! It is too cute. Those little legs go much faster than you would expect. Even on our walk around the woodland preserve trail, Monty led the way and I almost had to jog to keep up with him.

Monty doesn’t mind being picked up and snuggled, but he would still prefer to walk on his own rather than be carried around. He especially enjoys playing with toys. Monty was sharing his kennel with another smaller dog who has since been adopted, and he has a big enough personality that he would probably get along with larger dogs too. Be sure to say hello to Monty on your next visit to the shelter!

Orphans of the Storm Animal Shelter

2200 Riverwoods Road
Riverwoods (Deerfield), IL 60015

Open Daily 11am to 5pm
Open Thursdays 11am to 8pm
Closed New Year’s Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.


Asset-Based Capital Conference 2020
February 4-5, Las Vegas, Nevada

Planning to attend? You must be registered by January 24th to be listed in the SFNet ABCC program book. Don’t miss out, there’s only one week left

February 4-5, 2020
Encore at Wynn Las Vegas

Our Asset-Based Capital Conference brings together key players from the major asset-based market participants. Join your colleagues in asset-based lending, alternative asset management, private debt, private equity, distressed debt, and service providers such as attorneys and appraisers for two days of panels focusing on the rapidly changing economic environment and the way it is impacting our portfolios and our business opportunities.

After an afternoon networking event on the second day, the program will finish with the Capital Markets Update panel, followed by our popular joint reception with the TMA Distressed Investing Conference.

ABCC is the only conference where you will find outstanding networking opportunities combined with in-depth presentations and discussions geared just for asset-based lenders in the capital markets.
Hotel Information: Encore at Wynn Las Vegas is the official hotel of ABCC 2020.


Contact for More Information:


News Briefs----

Innovation Finance rolls out QuickFi mobile-first
equipment finance solution to global acclaim

Velocity Truck Centers Acquires Central California Truck
And Trailer Sales

JPMorgan garners $8.5B profit, confusion over Jamie Dimon’s future

deBanked CONNECT MIAMI Surpasses 500 Registered Attendees




You May Have Missed---

The Effect of Tax Reform on Equipment Financing


American Football Poem

S.F. 49ers

Jane Griffin

Gold helmets shine in the sunlight.
The jerseys are loose and the pants are tight.
Those were the only things shining this year.
After so many losses, there's no reason to cheer.
That's what all thought but one loyal fan
Because not matter what, I believe that they can.
I know we could have won the Superbowl
If our kicker was able to make a field goal.
Many times when we could have won the game,
Because of special teams, we left the field in shame.
We'll have to wait until next season
To be the ones doing the teasin'.
The Superbowl will be our mission.
After all it's 49ers tradition.



The 49ers should look into bringing back Rich Scangarello

49ers’ Nick Bosa named NFL Rookie of the Year; Dre Greenlaw also on also on first team

Two managers fired in two days

Panthers star retires at 28


California Nuts Briefs---

Santa Clara Is the Richest County in California

Governor puts up $20 million to possibly turn Bay Area cattle ranch into newest state park

Marin ‘most insured’ county in Bay Area, study says

Nearly 150-year-old Western Appliance retailer closing

From Bourdain to Kanye: Local restaurants, bars share
  stories of famous people they've served



“Gimme that Wine”

Oversupply of premium wine, slower sales growth to
spur discount brands, says Silicon Valley Bank forecast

Nation's largest online wine retailer finds success
with mobile channel, younger consumers

2020 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition Winners

‘Panic’ over 100 percent wine tariff threat in US

Free Wine App

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page


This Day in History

     1697 - The citizens of Massachusetts spent a day of fasting and repentance for their roles in the 1692 Salem Witch Trials. Judge Samuel Sewall, who had presided over many of those 20 capital judgments, published a written confession acknowledging his own "blame and shame.”
    1716 - Birthday of Phillip Livingston (d. 1778) at Albany, NY.  Merchant and signer of the Declaration of Independence.
    1762 - Fraunces Tavern opens in New York City, owned by “Black Sam,” one of the most prominent Blacks involved in the American Revolution (thought to be born in the West Indies). The tavern was a frequent haunt of George Washington and the main meeting place for the Sons of Liberty.
    1777 - Vermont and New Connecticut declared their independence from Britain and established a republic and separate colony, respectively, which lasted until they joined the Union as states.
    1781 - A British naval expedition led by Benedict Arnold burned Richmond, Virginia.
    1782 - Superintendent of Finance Robert Morris went before the Congress to recommend establishment of a national mint and decimal coinage.
    1825 - The first tax enacted by a state to support public schools was “an act providing for the establishment of free schools” by Illinois. It provided for a common school in each county, open to every class of white citizens between the ages of 5 and 21 years and supported by a tax of $2 of every $100 and five-sixth of the interest from the school fund.
    1844 – The University of Notre Dame received its charter from the state of Indiana.
    1845 - Birthday of Ella Flagg Young (d. 1918), Buffalo, NY.  Educator, first woman president of the National Education Association, superintendent of the Chicago school system (1909), and the first woman to supervise a school system in a major U.S. city. When an anti-woman faction tried to unseat her in 1913, she drew on all her political experience and rallied public pressure that forced four of her opponents to resign.
    1852 - Mt. Sinai Hospital was incorporated by Sampson Simson and eight associates in NY City. It was the first Jewish hospital in the U.S.
    1852 - Between January 15th and February 24th, a total of 1378 railroad cars were drawn by horses across the frozen Susquehanna River to engines waiting at Havre De Grace, MD.
    1862 - The first ironclad naval vessels were the Benton and the Essex, 1,000 tons each. Seven others of 512 tons each, were delivered at St. Louis, MO, where they were accepted for the government by Captain Andrew Hull Foote and made part of the Western Flotilla. They were also known as the Gunboat Flotilla on Eastern Waters, or the Mississippi Squadron.
    1863 - In the United States, "The Boston Morning Journal" became the first paper in the country published on wood pulp paper.
    1865 - Fort Fisher in North Carolina falls to Union forces, and Wilmington, the Confederacy's most important blockade-running port, is closed. When President Lincoln declared a blockade of southern ports in 1861, Rebel engineers began construction of a fortress at the mouth of New Inlet, which provided access to Wilmington. Fort Fisher was constructed of timber and sand, and it posed a formidable challenge for the Yankees. The walls were more than 20 feet high and they bristled with large cannon. Land mines and palisades made from sharpened logs created even more obstacles for potential attackers. Union leadership did not make Fort Fisher a high priority until the last year of the war. After the Federals closed Mobile Bay in August 1864, attention turned to shutting down Wilmington. Union ships moved into place in December and began a massive bombardment on Christmas Eve. The next day, a small force failed to capture the fort but the attempt was renewed in January. On January 13, a massive three-day bombardment began. On the third day, 9,000 Yankee infantry commanded by General Alfred Terry hit the beach and attacked Fort Fisher. The Confederates could not repulse the attack. The damage was heavy on both sides: the Union suffered more than 900 Army casualties and 380 Navy casualties, and the Confederates suffered 500 killed or wounded and over 1,000 captured. After the loss of this last major Confederate port, it was only three months before the war concluded.
    1870 - A Thomas Nast cartoon titled, "A Live Jackass Kicking a Dead Lion," was printed in "Harper's Weekly." The cartoon symbolized the Democratic Party with a donkey, a concept still in use today.
    1885 - Tenor Henry Burr (d. 1941), the most prolific recording artist of his day, was born in St. Stephen, New Brunswick. He began his recording career for Columbia in 1902 and is estimated to have recorded an astounding 12,000 titles for dozens of companies. From 1910 to 1928, Burr also managed a vocal group which recorded for Columbia as the Columbia Male Quartet and for Victor as the Peerless Quartet. After his recording career waned, he was a great favorite singing old-time ballads on the "National Barn Dance" from radio station WLS in Chicago.
    1888 - Birthday of folksinger Huddie William Ludbetter (Lead Belly), Shiloh, LA. Died Dec. 6, 1949.
    1889 – Coca-Cola Company, then known as the Pemberton Medicine Company, incorporated in Atlanta.  The company is best known for its flagship product, invented in 1886 by pharmacist John S. Pemberton in Atlanta.  The Coca-Cola formula and brand were bought in 1894 by Asa G. Candler.  
    1891 – Ray Chapman, the only man in Major League history to die (1920) as a result of being hit by a pitch, was born in Beaver Dam, KY.  He played nine seasons, was a regular in eight of those seasons, and had accumulated over 1,000 hits when his career ended.  Chapman put together another fine season as shortstop for the Cleveland Indians in 1920, hitting .304 with 97 runs scored through his first 110 games. Facing the NY Yankees on August 16, he was struck in the head (this was before helmets were mandatory) by a pitch by Carl Mays. He was knocked to the ground but eventually was able to walk toward the clubhouse with the assistance of teammates. However, he collapsed near second base and was rushed to a hospital. He died the next day.
    1892 – Dr. James Naismith published the rules of basketball. 
    1899 - Birthday of Goodman Ace (d. 1982) at Kansas City, MO.  Radio and TV writer, actor, columnist and humorist. With his wife, Jane, he created and acted in the popular series of radio programs (1928-45) “Easy Aces,” and he was called “America’s greatest wit” by Fred Allen. He died at New York City soon after asking that his tombstone be inscribed, “No flowers, please, I’m allergic.”
    1907 - William H. Taggart, a Chicago dentist, invented dental inlay made of gold, and presented the technique to the New York Odonatological Society. It is a method of casting gold inlays by the inverted pattern procedure, using the ancient principle of “disappearing core.”
    1907 - Dr. Lee De Forest, widely regarded as the "father of radio and the grandfather of television," patented the Audion radio tube, which turned radio into a practical transmission device for voice and music. Previously, wireless technology was primarily used for telegraph signals. Unfortunately, De Forest's business partners were prone to fraud: The De Forest Radio Telephone Company began to collapse in 1909, leading to De Forest's indictment for promoting a "worthless device"--the Audion tube. De Forest was later acquitted. Several years later, De Forest devised a way to connect a series of Audion tubes in order to amplify radio signals far beyond what a single tube could do. This process was essential in the development of radio and long-distance telephone. De Forest, despairing of business success, sold his patents at bargain-basement prices to several companies, including American Telephone and Telegraph, which used the repeating Audion tube as a key component in long-distance telephone technology.
    1908 - The first sorority for African-American students was Alpha Kappa Alpha, founded at Howard University, Washington, DC by Ethel Hedgeman Lyle. The first president was Lucy Slowe.  It was the first Greek letter organization founded by African American women.
    1908 – Edward Teller (d. 2003) was born in Budapest, Hungary.  A physicist who worked on the Manhattan Project during World War II, he promoted the first hydrogen fusion bomb that was considered secondary to the atomic bomb research taking place at the same time.  Throughout his life, he remained a profound influence on America’s defense and energy policies.
    1909 - Gene Krupa (d. 1973) birthday, Chicago.  The premier drummer of the big band era, besides leading his own band, he is best known for his work with Benny Goodman. After most of the big bands disbanded, Krupa led small jazz groups through most of the 1950's and '60s. A film loosely based on his life, "The Gene Krupa Story,” starring Sal Mineo, was released in 1959.
    1915 - Birthday of folk music collector Alan Lomax (d. 2002), Austin, TX.
    1920 - The Dry Law goes into effect in the United States. Selling liquor and beer becomes illegal.
    1927 - The Dumbarton Bridge opened, carrying the first auto traffic across San Francisco Bay between Fremont and Menlo Park.
    1929 - Birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., (d. 1968) at Atlanta, GA.  Civil rights leader, minister, advocate of nonviolence and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (1964). He was assassinated at Memphis, TN, Apr 4, 1968. After his death, many states and territories observed his birthday as a holiday. I remember interviewing Dr. King in the early 1960's at KFRC radio. Harold Light had brought Dr. King to the Bay Area and introduced me. He was a shy man, the first time I met him. The second time, he was more vocal, and after the Selma march, there were press conferences, not single radio interviews. He was an excellent dresser, very articulate, very attractive, very handsome in person, and grew into a statesman for freedom for all and equal opportunity for all. In 1983, the Congress approved HR 3706, "A bill to amend Title 5, United States Code, to make the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., a legal public holiday." Signed by the President on Nov 2, 1983, it became Public Law 98-144. The law sets the third Monday in January for observance of King's birthday. First observance was Jan 20, 1986.
    1932 - Up to two inches of snow whitened the Los Angeles basin of California. The Los Angeles Civic Center reported an inch of snow, and even the beaches of Santa Monica were whitened with snow, in what proved to be a record snowstorm for Los Angeles.
    1933 - After nearly a century of cooperative living, the utopian Amana colonists of Iowa begin using U.S. currency for the first time. The wide-open spaces of the West have always appealed to visionary reformers attempting to start new societies. Among others, the Mormons in Utah, the Hutterites in South Dakota and Montana, and the Swedenborgians in California all moved West for the same reason: cheap land and freedom from interference. Most reformers moved west after the Civil War, when travel became easier and the threat of Indian resistance was declining. As with the Mormons, the Amana colonial movement began in New York. Christian Metz, taking his cue from the writings of 18th century German mystics, established the group in 1842 on 5,000 acres near Buffalo, New York. Metz and his followers were similar to the Mormons in their rejection of the selfish individualism and dog-eat-dog competition of capitalism in favor of a more cooperative economic system. They isolated themselves from national and global markets and built a largely self-sufficient means of meeting their agricultural and material needs. Barter within the community helped them avoid using American currency. The community's agricultural and craft operations grew so quickly that the members soon found they needed more land than was cheaply available in New York. Like many of other land-hungry Americans, they looked westward. In 1855, the first members began setting up a new colony in Iowa called Amana, purchasing 30,000 acres of contiguous land as a base for their agricultural and craft operations. Amana (located near modern-day Iowa City) flourished in the decades to come. By the turn of the century, the colonists had built seven largely self-sufficient villages with farms, stores, bakeries, woolen mills, wineries, furniture shops, and the other necessities of independent living. The Amana community thrived for nearly 80 years, but its isolation from the rest of the world inevitably began to wane during the 20th century. In the early 1930s, the colony experienced severe economic problems, in part due to the Great Depression. The people voted to abandon their communal life in 1932 and they reorganized the colony on a capitalist basis with each member receiving stock in a new community corporation. The people of Amana began using American currency in January 1933. Although it violated the original precepts of their founders, the decision to bring Amana into the national marketplace actually saved the community. Today, the Amana colony is the center of a thriving business empire of woolen mills, meat shops, bakeries, and wineries. Though its original vision is no longer the same, visitors to the colony will still find a communal society dedicated to preserving many elements of Old World life and craftsmanship.
    1934 – Yankees slugger Babe Ruth signed a one-year contract worth $35,000. While the contract is considered a lucrative one for the times, it represents a pay cut of $17,000.  This would be his last contract with the Yankees who released him after the season, at age 39.
    1936 - Owens Illinois Glass of Toledo, OH completed the first all-glass windowless structure, using eight thousand translucent water-clear hollow glass blocks weighing about 150 tons for a two-story building.  It had 39 rooms and an aggregate floor area of 20,000 square feet. Do not know if the building is still standing.
    1937 - 1.77 inches of rain fell at Washington, DC, making it the wettest inaugural day of record. Temperatures were only in the 30s as Franklin D. Roosevelt was sworn in for his second term.
    1937 - The record low temperature for the state of California was set at Boca when the thermometer dropped to 45 degrees below zero.
    1939 – The San Francisco Municipal Railway and Market St. RR began service to the Transbay Terminal.
    1939 – In the first NFL Pro Bowl, the New York Giants defeated the All-Stars, 13-10.
    1942 - Benny Goodman Band records “Jersey Bounce.”
    1942 - The Glen Gray Orchestra records their hit "It’s the Talk of the Town".
    1942 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt sent his famed "Green Light Letter" to MLB Commissioner Landis, encouraging the Majors to continue playing during World War II. President Roosevelt states that he believes playing the sport would be good for Americans and encourages the owners to have more games at night to give war workers an opportunity to attend games. Despite a loss of many star players to military service, all 16 teams will continue to play regular schedules for the duration of the war. Ironically, the Chicago Cubs, who had signed an agreement with a contractor to install lights at Wrigley Field, dropped their plans because of the military's need for the material. It was 35 more years before lights are finally installed at the venerable ballpark, the last of the Major League ballparks to do so.
    1943 - Pentagon completed.  The world's largest office building with 6.5 million square feet of usable space, the Pentagon is located in Virginia across the Potomac River from Washington, DC, and serves as headquarters for the Department of Defense.
    1943 - Famous temperature antics occurred in the Black Hills of South Dakota. The temperature was 52 degrees above zero at Lead and 16 degrees below zero degrees at Deadwood simultaneously. The places are only 1.5 miles apart, but there is an elevation difference of 600 feet.
    1945 - BEYER, ARTHUR O., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company C, 603d Tank Destroyer Battalion. Place and date: Near Arloncourt, Belgium, 15 January 1945. Entered service at: St. Ansgar, lowa. Born: 20 May 1909, Rock Township, Mitchell County, lowa. G.O. No.: 73, 30 August 1945. Citation: He displayed conspicuous gallantry in action. His platoon, in which he was a tank-destroyer gunner, was held up by antitank, machinegun, and rifle fire from enemy troops dug in along a ridge about 200 yards to the front. Noting a machinegun position in this defense line, he fired upon it with his 76-mm. gun killing 1 man and silencing the weapon. He dismounted from his vehicle and, under direct enemy observation, crossed open ground to capture the 2 remaining members of the crew. Another machinegun, about 250 yards to the left, continued to fire on him. Through withering fire, he advanced on the position. Throwing a grenade into the emplacement, he killed 1 crewmember and again captured the 2 survivors. He was subjected to concentrated small-arms fire but, with great bravery, he worked his way a quarter mile along the ridge, attacking hostile soldiers in their foxholes with his carbine and grenades. When he had completed his self-imposed mission against powerful German forces, he had destroyed 2 machinegun positions, killed 8 of the enemy and captured 18 prisoners, including 2 bazooka teams. Cpl. Beyer's intrepid action and unflinching determination to close with and destroy the enemy eliminated the German defense line and enabled his task force to gain its objective.
    1947 - Birthday of trumpet player/composer Baikida Carroll, St. Louis. MO.
    1947 – The dismembered body of Elizabeth Short was found in an empty lot in Los Angeles.  Called the Black Dahlia, her murder sparked a media frenzy and it remains much-discussed today.  Dozens have confessed to the crime but they have all been disproved.  The murder remains unsolved and is the most famous in LA.
    1949 - Birthday of Ronnie Van Zandt (d. 1977), lead singer of the southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, born in Jacksonville, Florida. The band built a loyal following, beginning in the American South in 1973. Their best- known songs were "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Free Bird," a tribute to Duane Allman of the Allman Brothers Band. Lynyrd Skynyrd seemed on the verge of superstardom in 1977 when a plane crash in Mississippi killed Ronnie Van Zandt and five others, including Skynyrd guitarist Steve Gaines.
    1951 - Top Hits
“Tennessee Waltz” - Patti Page
“The Thing” - Phil Harris
“My Heart Cries for You” - Guy Mitchell
“The Golden Rocket” - Hank Snow
    1952 - A six day snowstorm was in progress in the western U.S. The storm produced 44 inches of snow at Marlette Lake, NV, 52 inches at Sun Valley, ID, and 149 inches at Tahoe, CA, establishing single storm records for each of those three states. In addition, 24-hour snowfall totals of 22 inches at the University of Nevada, and 26 inches at Arco, ID, established records for those two states. The railroad streamliner, 'City of San Francisco' was snowbound in the Sierra Nevada Range, near Donner Summit.
    1954 - The coldest temperature ever recorded in the 48 contiguous states was recorded at Rogers Pass, MT. The temperature dropped to 69.7 degrees below zero.
    1954 - Joe DiMaggio marries Marilyn Monroe in San Francisco at City Hall.
    1955 - A young singer named Elvis Presley performs at the Louisiana Hayride, Municipal Auditorium, Shreveport, LA, performing "Hearts of Stone," "That's All Right, Mama" and "Tweedle Dee." In the audience is "Colonel" Tom Parker, who was witnessing Elvis for the first time.
    1957 – The Brooklyn Dodgers extended their five-year lease on Ebbets Field by signing a new three-year lease with real estate developer Marvin Kratter, who bought the field in 1953. Less than a year later, the Dodgers moved to LA.
    1958 - Elvis Presley records "Hard Headed Woman," "Trouble," "New Orleans," "King Creole," "Crawfish"
    1959 – Top Hits
“The Chipmunk Song” - The Chipmunks
“Smoke Gets in Your Eyes” - The Platters
“My Happiness” - Connie Francis
“City Lights” - Ray Price
    1961 - The "Kennedy Inaugural snowstorm" belted the mid-Atlantic area and New England. Up to 29 inches of snow fell in northern New Jersey and southeastern New York. Areas north and west of Boston, MA received over two feet. This was the second of three major snowstorms during the 1960-61 winter season in the northeastern U.S.
    1964 - Giants center fielder Willie Mays, the highest paid player in baseball, signs for $105,000.
    1965 - The NFL teams pledged not to sign college seniors until completion of all their games, including bowl games.
    1966 - The Beach Boys enter Billboard's Hot 100 for the 23rd time with their version of "Barbara Ann," previously a #13 hit for the Regents in 1961. The song was recorded live at a party and actually features the voice of Dean Torrence of Jan and Dean on lead vocal. The record will peak at number 2 in the US.
    1966 - Petula Clark's "My Love" entered the Billboard chart, where it would become her second #1 hit
    1966 - The Supremes' "My World is Empty Without You" enters the pop charts.
    1966 - The Rolling Stones receive their third gold record for the album "December's Children." It features the tunes "Get Off My Cloud," "Route 66," "As Tears Go By" and "I'm Free."
    1967 - The film “The Fastest Guitar Alive,” starring Roy Orbison and Sheb Wooley, premieres in New York City.
    1967 - Ed Sullivan refuses to let the Rolling Stones sing their big hit "Let’s Spend the Night Together" on his CBS show of the same name unless they change the title and lyrics to "Let's Spend Some Time Together." The band does as it's told but lead singer Mick Jagger mocks the censorship by making faces at the camera while he sings the cleaned-up line.
    1967 - Considered the “First Super Bowl,” the Green Bay Packers won the first NFL-AFL World Championship Game, defeating the Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10, at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Packers quarterback Bart Starr completed 16 out of 25 passes and was named the game's Most Valuable Player. Pro football's title game later became known as the Super Bowl, a name credited to Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt, Jr.
    1967 - Top Hits
“I’m a Believer” - The Monkees
“Tell It Like It Is” - Aaron Neville
“Good Thing” - Paul Revere & The Raiders
“There Goes My Everything” - Jack Greene
    1968 - Elvis Presley records "Too Much Monkey Business"
    1968 - JOHNSON, DWIGHT H., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Specialist Fifth Class, U.S. Army, Company B, 1st Battalion, 69th Armor, 4th Infantry Division. Place and date: Near Dak To, Kontum Province, Republic of Vietnam, 15 January 1968. Entered service at: Detroit, Mich. Born: 7 May 1947, Detroit, Mich. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sp5c. Johnson, a tank driver with Company B, was a member of a reaction force moving to aid other elements of his platoon, which was in heavy contact with a battalion size North Vietnamese force. Sp5c. Johnson's tank, upon reaching the point of contact, threw a track and became immobilized. Realizing that he could do no more as a driver, he climbed out of the vehicle, armed only with a .45 caliber pistol. Despite intense hostile fire, Sp5c. Johnson killed several enemy soldiers before he had expended his ammunition. Returning to his tank through a heavy volume of antitank rocket, small arms and automatic weapons fire, he obtained a sub-machine gun with which to continue his fight against the advancing enemy. Armed with this weapon, Sp5c. Johnson again braved deadly enemy fire to return to the center of the ambush site where he courageously eliminated more of the determined foe. Engaged in extremely close combat when the last of his ammunition was expended, he killed an enemy soldier with the stock end of his submachine gun. Now weaponless, Sp5c. Johnson ignored the enemy fire around him, climbed into his platoon sergeant's tank, extricated a wounded crewmember and carried him to an armored personnel carrier. He then returned to the same tank and assisted in firing the main gun until it jammed. In a magnificent display of courage, Sp5c. Johnson exited the tank and again armed only with a .45 caliber pistol, engaged several North Vietnamese troops in close proximity to the vehicle. Fighting his way through devastating fire and remounting his own immobilized tank, he remained fully exposed to the enemy as he bravely and skillfully engaged them with the tank's externally-mounted .50 caliber machine gun; where he remained until the situation was brought under control. Sp5c. Johnson's profound concern for his fellow soldiers, at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the U.S. Army.
    1969 - In South Florida, Barbara Jo Rubin, 19, was to ride as the first woman jockey at a major race track - and then was taken off her mount by track officials. Reportedly it was money, not chivalry that was at the heart of the matter. A winning jockey gets ten percent of the purse and the jockeys, always a very touchy group because of their smallness and their constant dieting, didn't want to share the pots of gold (and ego) with a GIRL! Finally, on February 22, 1969, Barbara Jo was able to ride at Charles Town, West Virginia without the world stopping - and she won her first race. She crossed the finish line first in 11 of her first 22 starts. Unfortunately, Barbara Jo at 5'5" was tall by jockey standards and was still growing. Her height combined with an old knee injury ended her racing career in less than a year.
    1969 - Elvis Presley records--"A Little Bit of Green," "Gentle on My Mind"
    1971 - George Harrison releases "My Sweet Lord."
    1972 - Elvis Presley was censored from the waist down by Ed Sullivan, but still reportedly brought in largest audience for a single television show, to that time, in a live worldwide concert from Honolulu, Hawaii.
    1972 - Don McLean's classic single, “American Pie,” jumped to Number 1 on Billboard's popular record charts and stayed there for 4 weeks.  In the UK, the single reached No. 2 on its original 1972 release and a reissue in 1991 reached No. 12. The song was listed as the No. 5 song on the RIAA project “Songs of the Century.”  Except to acknowledge that he first learned about Buddy Holly’s February 3, 1959 death when he was folding newspapers for his paper route on the morning of February 4, 1959 (the line "February made me shiver/with every paper I'd deliver"), McLean has generally avoided responding to direct questions about the song lyrics. McLean dedicated the “American Pie” album to Holly.  The original manuscript sold at auction in April, 2015 for $1.2MM.  “American Pie” is also the longest of all #1 hits in the rock era, surpassing “El Paso” by Marty Robbins. [It was also a fixture at the weddings of all three Mango daughters!  Coincidentally, I first learned of the crash as I was folding the Newark Star-Ledger on my paper route but I did not consider it significant until McLean memorialized it.]
    1973 - Citing "progress" in the Paris peace negotiations between National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho of North Vietnam, President Richard Nixon halts the most concentrated bombing of the war, as well as mining, shelling, and all other offensive action against North Vietnam. The cessation of direct attacks against North Vietnam did not extend to South Vietnam, where the fighting continued as both sides jockeyed for control of territory before the anticipated cease-fire.
    1974 - During the Watergate affair, an expert testifies before the House Judiciary Committee that an 18-1/2-minute gap discovered during a critical subpoenaed recording of a White House conversation between President Richard M. Nixon & White House staff member H. R. Haldeman was caused by “deliberate and repeated erasures.” The White House fails to satisfactorily explain the long silence during the key conversation between Nixon and Haldeman. The Watergate affair began after a break-in to the Watergate Hotel by White House officials was uncovered by journalists and the Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities, and then escalated when President Nixon attempted to use executive privilege and national security as reasons to suppress the subsequent investigation. On July 16, 1973, former White House aide Alexander P. Butterfield brought the existence of official recordings of Nixon's White House conversations to the attention of the Senate committee investigating Watergate, and on July 26, the Senate subpoenaed the nine Watergate tapes. Nixon failed to comply with the subpoena, and on August 9, the Senate committee filed suit against the president. Finally, on October 23, Nixon agreed to turn over the tapes, but when the tapes finally arrive at the Capitol, two of the nine are missing, and an eighteen-and-a-half-minute gap on one of the tapes is discovered. The White House fails to satisfactorily explain the long silence during the key conversation between Nixon and Haldeman, although an expert determined that the gap had been deliberately erased. Nixon's failure to comply in a timely fashion to the subpoena for the Watergate tapes contributed to the articles of impeachment voted against him on July 30, 1974 and helped force his resignation one week later
    1974 - “Happy Days” premiered on TV. This nostalgic comedy set in Milwaukee in the 1950s starred Ron Howard as teenager Richie Cunningham with Anson Williams as his best friend "Potsie" Weber and Don Most as his best friend Ralph Malph. Tom Bosley and Marion Ross played Richie's parents and his sister, Joanie, was played by Erin Moran. The most memorable character was The Fonz--Arthur "Fonzie" Fonzarelli--played by Henry Winkler. In 1977, it remained number 1 in the Neilsen ratings for the season. "Happy Days" remained on the air until July 12, 1984 and has been in syndication since. The comedy launched two spin-offs: “Laverne and Shirley” and “Joanie Loves Chachi.” Happy Days originated as a 1972 skit on “Love, American Style.”
    1975 - Top Hits
“Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” - Elton John
“You’re the First, the Last, My Everything” - Barry White
“Junior’s Farm/Sally G” - Paul McCartney & Wings
“Ruby, Baby” - Billy "Crash" Craddock
    1975 - "I've got bad news and I don't expect any applause," President Gerald Ford warned Congress before launching into his very first State of the Union address. During the ensuing speech, Ford painted a grim portrait of America's economic woes. The state of the union, he confessed, was "not good. Millions of Americans are out of work. Recession and inflation are eroding the money of millions more. Prices are too high and sales are too low." Along with these problems, Ford offered an ominous budget estimate that showed the government running increasingly in the red over the next few fiscal years. However, Ford, who had recently been installed as the President after Richard Nixon's scandal-ridden resignation, attempted to balance the bad news by offering a remedy for the America's fiscal ailments. He unveiled a relief package that featured a few rounds of tax cuts for individuals and corporations, as well as an energy program that promised to raise money, albeit through raising costs and taxes on oil for consumers and businesses. James Earl “Jimmy” Carter, Jr was elected president of the United States in 1976 with 297 electoral votes to outgoing president Ford 240.
    1977 - Leo Sayer's "You Make Me Feel Like Dancing" hits #1
    1977 - The Eagles' “Hotel California” album hits #1
    1978 - Super Bowl XII (at New Orleans): Dallas Cowboys 27, Denver Broncos 10. The first Super Bowl played without a sky. This one opened the Louisiana Superdome. Tom Landry was the Cowboys’ coach, Roger Staubach was their quarterback. Co-MVPs: DT Randy White and DE Harvey Martin (only co-MVPs in Super Bowl history). Tickets: $30.00.
    1978 - Snowblitz!  A paralyzing nor'easter blasted New England and the mid-Atlantic states. Boston, MA recorded 21 inches in 24 hours to set a new record 24-hour snowfall amount -- only to have it broken 2 weeks later.  The city was complete shut down for nearly a week.  Snowfall was under forecast since a predicted changeover from snow to rain did not occur.  Instead the storm went out to sea, picking up additional moisture, then circled back across the city, more than doubling the previous storm’s fall.  We were living in Wilmington, DE at the time and the snow dropped over 2 feet…the worst storm there since 1888!
    1979 - Birthday of New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees, born Austin, Texas.  Considered with Tom Brady and Peyton Manning to be the best of his generation, Brees currently holds the NFL record for TD passes thrown, career pass completions, career completion percentage, career passing yards, is third in regular season career passer rating, and fourth in postseason career passer rating. In 2012, he broke Johnny Unitas’ long-standing record of consecutive games with a touchdown pass. He has five of the nine 5,000+ passing yard seasons—no other NFL quarterback has done so more than once. He has led the NFL in passing yards a record seven times and in passing touchdowns a record-tying four times.  He led the Saints to their only Super Bowl win in SB XLIV, of which he was named MVP. 
    1981 – Bob Gibson was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.  In 17 seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals, Gibson won 251 games, struck out 3,117 batters, compiled a 2.91 ERA, won 20 games five times, and earned two World Championship rings. In 1968, Gibson enjoyed his best season ever, going 22-9 with a 1.12 ERA and captured the Cy Young Award.  The next season, the mound was lowered to generate more offense, largely due to Gibson’s dominant year.
    1981 - Minutes after the presidential inauguration of Ronald Reagan, Iran releases 52 Americans held 444 days in exchange for the release of $8 billion in frozen Iranian assets seized by the U.S. Later, it's revealed that the release was delayed until the first hours of the administration by Reagan's transition team, in order to make him look good.
    1981 - “Hill Street Blues” premiered on TV. This immensely popular NBC police series created by Stephen Bochco and Michael Kozoll that focused more on police officers than on crime. The show was very realistic and highly praised by real policemen. “Hill Street Blues” was set in an anonymous northern city (the exteriors were actually filmed in Chicago) and was the first real attempt by television to portray police officers as fallible human beings. Each episode began with the 7 a.m. roll call led by Sergeant Esterhaus. He closed the roll call with his trademark refrain, "Let's be careful out there." Hill Street Blues not only changed the way that Americans viewed police officers, it also revolutionized the television drama itself. The show resisted formula and introduced the ensemble cast. Whereas early cop shows like Dragnet and Adam-12 were centered around a couple of officers who always got their man by the end of the hour, the full squad house of regulars on “Hill Street Blues” rarely resolved cases in one episode.
It won a slew of Emmys and ran for seven seasons. Cast: Daniel J. Travanti as Captain Frank Furillo, Veronica Hamel as public defender Joyce Davenport, Michael Conrad as Sergeant Phil "Let's be careful out there" Esterhaus, Barbara Bosson as Fay Furillo, and as the wonderfully drawn cops, Bruce Weitz (Mick Belker), Taurean Blacque (Neal Washington), Kiel Martin (Johnny LaRue), Joe Spano (Henry Goldblume), James B. Sikking (Howard Hunter), René Enríquez (Ray Calletano), Michael Warren (Bobby Hill), Betty Thomas (Lucy Bates), Ed Marinaro (Joe Coffey) and Charles Haid (Andy Renko).  The last telecast was on May 19, 1987.
    1983 - Top Hits
“Down Under” - Men at Work
“The Girl is Mine” - Michael Jackson /Paul McCartney
“Dirty Laundry” - Don Henley
“I Can’t Even Get the Blues” - Reba McEntyre
    1985 - At Carnegie Hall, in New York, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences honored 79-year-old actress, Myrna Loy, who never received an Academy nomination although she appeared in 120 films.
    1987 - Paramount Home Video said, for the first time, it would put a commercial at the start of one of its video releases. The movie "Top Gun" had a 30-second Diet Pepsi ad tacked on to its beginning. The idea behind adding something else to be fast forwarded through was to reduce the price of the video by $3. The difference to Paramount would be made up by Pepsi money. It was also thought more consumers would buy the Tom Cruise picture rather than paying more for videos without the commercial.
    1987 - A powerful storm over the Southern Plateau and the Southern Rockies produced 24 inches of snow at Colorado Springs, CO, including 22 inches in 24 hours, a January record. High winds in the southwestern U.S. gusted to 65 mph in the Yosemite Valley of California.
    1988 - A small storm over the Atlantic Ocean produced heavy snow along the coast of North Carolina. The five-inch total at Wilmington, NC was their third highest for any storm in January in 117 years of records.
    1988 - Jimmy "The Greek" Snyder makes racist remarks about black athletes.  Snyder made his comments in a lunchtime interview at Duke Zeibert's, a Washington restaurant.  He said that black athletes perform better than white athletes for reasons that went back to slave times.  "The slave owner would breed his big black (man) to his big woman so that he could have a big black kid...that's where it all started." he said.  Coincidentally, James Michener’s “Sports in America, published in 1976, made similar assertions but there was no reference to that in any of the reporting around the incident.  An embarrassed CBS fired him the next day.
    1990 - ‘Big’ George Foreman, on the comeback-trail at 42 years of age, knocked out Gerry Cooney in the second round at Atlantic City, NJ. (Foreman became the oldest [age 45] ever to win the heavyweight title when he knocked out Michael Moorer on Nov 5, 1994.)
    1990 - While one Pacific storm crossed the Central Rockies, another approached the west coast. The northern mountains of Utah were buried under 17 to 35 inches of snow while the mountains of southern Utah received another 12 to 16 inches. Eighteen cities in the central U.S. reported record high temperatures for the date as readings warmed into the 50s and 60s. Wichita, KS reported a record high of 68 degrees.
    1991 - Top Hits
“Justify My Love” - Madonna
“High Enough” - Damn Yankees
“Love Will Never Do” (“Without You”) - Janet Jackson
“Unanswered Prayers” - Garth Brooks
    1992 - The Seventh Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremonies are held in New York City. Inductees include Bobby "Blue" Bland, Booker T. and the MGs, Johnny Cash, The Isley Brothers, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Sam and Dave, and The Yardbirds.
    1992 - Tim Berners Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, released a simple line-mode Web browser on the Internet. Berners Lee had first proposed the Web in 1990 and had presented early versions of Web clients, servers, and browsers to his colleagues throughout 1991.
Until then you needed the actual address or had to rely on Archer or Gopher to search for a website which basically was cumbersome and very slow.
    1993 - In the southern U.S., train echo thunderstorms drenched Lafayette and Baton Rouge, LA with 10.83 and 9.02 inches of rain in 24 hours, respectively.
    1994 - Frigid conditions persisted over the northeastern U.S. Rangeley, ME reported 45 degrees below zero for a morning low for the cold spot in the nation. First Connecticut Lake, NH dropped to a frigid 44 degrees below zero. Both Pittsburgh, PA and Cleveland, OH completed their longest stretch of subzero readings on record, with 52 and 56 consecutive hours, respectively.
    1994 - "Dazzey Duks" by Duice was on the Billboard Hot 100 for the 54th consecutive week, the longest run ever on any of the magazine's charts. Also on the Hot 100 that week, Tag Team's "Whoomp! (There It Is)" was in the top-ten for the 24th week - another record.
    1995 - The San Francisco 49ers beat the Dallas Cowboys 38-28 in the NFC championship game and the San Diego Chargers edged the Pittsburgh Steelers 17-13 in the AFC title game. (The 49ers beat the Chargers 49-26 in Super Bowl XXIX.)
    1995 - The Golf Channel began on some U.S. cable systems. Four years later, the world’s first 24-hour golf network was seen in over 30,000,000 homes.
    1997 - During a heated Chicago vs. Minneapolis basketball game, Chicago Bulls star Dennis Rodman brazenly kicked a courtside cameraman in the groin. Rodman later claimed it was an accident, but the incident was captured from several angles by other cameramen and was seen by millions of people across the country. Eugene Amos, the cameraman, was treated at a hospital and then released - the extent of his injuries were not released. Prosecutors told the press later that they were considering assault charges against Rodman. If suspended, it would be the second of the season for the temperamental, flamboyant athlete. Rodman was later suspended from 23 games and heavily fined; the suspension was the second-longest in NBA history. A few days later, a financial settlement between Amos and Rodman was reached; Amos received $200,000 from Rodman.
    2009 - U.S. Airways Flight 1549 ditched in the Hudson River shortly after takeoff from LaGuardia Airport in NYC.  The aircraft was disabled by striking a flock of geese during its initial climb. All of the 155 passengers and crew aboard the aircraft survived. Capt. Chesley Sullenberger walked the unflooded part of the passenger cabin twice to make sure everyone had evacuated before retrieving the plane's maintenance logbook and being the last to evacuate the aircraft.  Pictures showed the passengers standing on the wings of the plane floating in the river as emergency boats picked them up.
    2014 - The LA Dodgers signed P Clayton Kershaw to the biggest deal in baseball history, since surpassed in 2019 by Stephen Strasburg with the Nationals and Gerrit Cole with the Yankees. The seven-year, $215 million package averages to $30.7 million per season.
    2014 - The National Security Agency, NSA, was revealed to be using software to spy on nearly 100,000 computers around the world.  Most of the software is implanted by accessing the Internet, but some technology enables data to be entered or altered through radio wave transmission.
Super Bowl Champions:
    1967 - Green Bay Packers
    1978 - Dallas Cowboys

**** Super Bowl
The year was 1966, and war was raging in professional football. It was a bidding war for talent and it had been going on since the American Football League came onto the scene in 1960 to challenge the National Football League, 40 years its senior.
At first, the battles were for college players, and the AFL scored an early victory when a court ruled in favor of the Houston Oilers over the NFL's Los Angeles Rams after both clubs had signed Billy Cannon, the Heisman Trophy winning halfback at Louisiana State.
Although the leagues agreed to a "no tampering" rule on existing player contracts, the stakes became high for college talent. Bonuses went sky-high. The AFL's New York Jets signed Alabama quarterback Joe Namath in 1965 to a $400,000 contract, the largest amount ever for a collegian. In 1966, the NFL's Atlanta Falcons gave Texas linebacker Tommy Nobis a $600,000 package and the Green Bay Packers forked over $711,000 to Texas Tech running back Donny Anderson.
Meanwhile, veteran players were settling for small raises on relatively small salaries. For example, John Brodie, the San Francisco 49ers quarterback, received $35,000 in 1965 and was asking for a raise to $65,000 after leading the NFL in completions, completion percentage, yardage and touchdown passes.
Then came a back-breaker. Buffalo Bills place-kicker Pete Gogolak [Ralph Mango’s Delta Upsilon Fraternity brother at Cornell and the first soccer-style kicker in pro football], who had played out his option in 1965, signed with the NFL's New York Giants. The "no tampering" code had been broken. The conflict was in the open, and it was time for action.
On April 7, 1966, peacemaker Joe Foss resigned as AFL commissioner and the next day Al Davis, general manager of the Oakland Raiders, took over. Davis was a hawk in regard to the NFL, and he had a plan.
Davis organized an AFL war chest and urged owners to start talking to established NFL stars. The NFL had bragged of its superiority because of the caliber of its quarterbacks. Davis wanted to sign those quarterbacks for the AFL.
The Raiders quickly signed Los Angeles quarterback Roman Gabriel to a commitment starting in '67. Houston offered the 49ers' Brodie $75,000, spread over 10 years, to sign a five-year deal with the Oilers. Reportedly, eight of the NFL's starting quarterbacks were negotiating with the AFL.
The NFL had no choice. On June 8, 1966, two months after Davis became the AFL commissioner, a merger agreement was announced. There would be a common draft starting in 1967, interleague preseason games starting in '67 and regular-season play combining the leagues in 1970. Territorial indemnification of $18 million was to be paid to the 49ers and Giants over a 20-year period.
Most important, from the standpoint of football fans, was the immediate establishment of a championship game between the leagues. This was the AFL-NFL World Championship Game -- which was popularized as the Super Bowl from its inception.
Gabriel never went to the Raiders and Brodie never left the 49ers, but Brodie collected a million dollars on the agreement he had made in his talks with Houston.  Davis resigned as AFL commissioner a month after the merger. He clearly had won his battle.



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