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


Friday, March 16, 2018

Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines

Alert: Section179.0rg
  Trojan Horse or Very Clever Advertising
     By Christopher Menkin
Neuman Finance Leases Space in Philadelphia
   Plans Hiring more than 200 Jobs Next Two to Three Years
Verhelle Forms New Company, Registering in California
   and Florida: Innovation Finance USA
Your Leasing Solutions Joins
      Funder List "A"
New Hires/Promotions in the Leasing Business
   and Related Industries
Leasing Industry Ads---Help Wanted
   Lease Contract & Funding Administrator/Account Executive
“Do” Diligence on New Vendors
   By Michael J. Witt, Esq
Majority of Baby Boomers Now Own a Smart Device
   By Zoe Bernard, Business Insider
The Death of Stalin/Claire's Camera
Last Flag Flying/Nocturama/The Age of Innocence
  Film/Digital Reviews by Leasing News' Fernando Croce
Border Collie/Mix
  Philadelphia, Pennsylvania  Adopt-a-Dog
Theresa Kabot, CLFP
  in her Richard Sherman Jersey
News Briefs---
ELFA State of Funding 2018 Report
 Available to Non-Members
BMW Financial to pay $2.2 Million to Settle
  Troops' Refund Claims on Canceled Car Leases
Amazon gaining on Walmart's market share
  Suspecting that the trend will continue
The 10 Best Cities to Open a Quick-Service Restaurant
  Slide Show

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---
  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,
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Trojan Horse or Very Clever Advertising?

This website has fooled many brokers, vendors, lessees, even appearing on their company websites to explain the depreciation and full deductions available. The information appears accurate, but it really is an advertisement for Crest Capital. It is the main reason they came in number one in the Leasing News Top Leasing Company websites (1).

Much of the information provided goes to Crest Capital, giving them leads. For instance, the petition, asks for your name, email, etc. They show on the site 18,636 signed petitions. To give credence, initials of many with city and current dates are listed (names, emails).

In signing the petition, you are also asked for other features, which include tracking, and the latest Google type information.

You are also asked to promote the site in LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Google.

There is poll on the front page asking "What does the average American pay in annual personal income tax?” There is also a 2.50 minute video from a Crest Capital salesperson.

The Tax Deduction Calculator is "powered by Crest Capital."  Asking for current information takes you direct to Crest Capital with the Tax Deduction Calculator and a "free" download to obtain "Qualified Financing."  Then more advertising for Crest Capital.

Perhaps this is Financial Technology at its very best, but also could be deceptive, as the opening information appears to be more "Government" information than where it originates.  Definitely excellent advertising, but beware if you think it is not advertising and put it on your website to inform your visitors. You are not only promoting Crest Capital, but giving them leads.

(1) Top Nine Leasing Company Websites in North America





Neuman Finance Leases Space in Philadelphia
Plans Hiring more than 200 Jobs Next Two to Three Years

   Dan Dyer                           George Pelose

Former Marlin Business Services CEO Dan Dyer and COO/General Counsel George Pelose announced the formation of Neuman Finance Company, a subsidiary of Beneficial Bank, in November, 2017.
The Philadelphia Business Journal notes they have signed a ten year lease on the 17th floor at 123 South Board Street, Philadelphia.

Reportedly they have options to expand and renew as their plans are to add more than 200 jobs over the next two to the years, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal.

The two founders are reportedly working out of a small office in Moorestown, New Jersey, "building out the company's executive team."

The Philadelphia Business Journal adds the company will operate independently from Beneficial Equipment Finance Corp., which focuses on medical equipment leasing, "which generates $100 million in leases."





Verhelle Forms New Company, Registering in California
and Florida: Innovation Finance USA

Serving as Chief Executive Officer, William Verhelle is former co-founder and CEO of First American Equipment Finance. He is bringing along with him Mark Tomaselli, President, former CIO at First American Equipment Finance, and Mike Ziegelmann, Chief Financial Officer, former CFO of First American Equipment Finance.  The company is located in Fairpoint, New York.

Leadership Team:

"Innovation Finance offers large, sophisticated borrowers unprecedented access to low-cost capital on the most modern client-accessible lending platform. Founded by the leaders of one of the most successful commercial finance businesses in the U.S., we are changing the face of commercial lending. In addition to the lowest available rates, Innovation Finance offers speed, convenience, and a better client experience."

The company site states they are doing both leasing and lending.

Presently Hiring:



Joins Funder List "A"

In Business Since 
Leasing Association
Your Leasing Solution, LLC
Las Vegas, Nevada
Robert Weening, CFO
Jennifer Mckay
Dealership Relationship Manager
Southern California
833-387-4127 x 1036 Office 
562-526-4055 Cell

Average: $35,000 to $50,000


A -Accepts Broker Business | B -Requires Broker be Licensed
 | C -Sub-Broker Program| D -"Private label Program" | E - Also "in house" salesmen

99% of all applications are accepted in under 5 minutes

Specialist in Heavy Equipment Leasing
(Construction, Agricultural and More)
Transportation Leasing
(Semi-Trucks, Trailers, Fleets, and More)

"Our vehicle and equipment leasing process is as streamlined as it gets, making it as fast as possible for your business to get the vehicles and equipment you need to succeed."




New Hires/Promotions in the Leasing Business
and Related Industries


Larry Altman was hired as Senior Vice President, Celtic Capital Corporation, Calabasas, California.   He is based out of the Greater Atlanta Area.  Previously, he was Vice President, Magnolia Financial, Inc. (September, 2012 - March, 2018); Vice President, Regional Sales Manager, Bay View Funding (2010 - September, 2012); Vice President, Sterling National Bank (2009 - 2010).

Kenneth A. Brause was hired as Chief Financial Officer, OnDeck, New York City. "Upon a mutually agreed upon transition process between the company and current CFO Howard Katzenberg, Katzenberg will serve as an advisor to OnDeck until April 13, 2018." Prior, Brause was Executive Vice President & Treasurer of CIT, joining the firm August, 2007, as Executive Vice President, Investor Relations; promoted November, 2012, President, Small Business Lending; promoted, January, 2014, Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer, North American Banking. Previously, he was Managing Director, Investor Relations, The Bank of New York (May, 2006 - July, 2007) Vice President Strategy & Development, Horizon BCBS of NJ (September, 2002 - May, 2006); SVP, Investor Relations, AIG American General (1999 - 2002); Principal, Bankers Trust (1985 -1999). Education: The University of Chicago, Booth School of Business (Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.), Accounting and Finance (1990 - 1992).  University of Pennsylvania, The Wharton School, Bachelor of Science (BS), Economics (1981- 1985).

Brian K. Crogan was hired as Vice President of Sales, First National Capital (FNCC), a commercial equipment and aviation provider,  Foothill Ranch, California. Prior, he was Vice President, California First Bank, Carlsbad, California (April, 2004 - March, 2018). Education: San Diego State University, California State University, Bachelor of Science (BS), Finance.

Phillip Dennis was hired as Funding Director,, Norcross, Georgia.  Prior, he was Funding Director, Red Door Capital Group (2016); Managing Principal Consultant, Ariel Capital Funding (February, 2015); Chief Operations Officer, Times Square Consulting, LLC (October, 2016 - October, 2017); Legal Department/Operations, Walberg Silverstein and Assoc. (October, 2006 - October, 2009); Senior Loan Officer, Select Home Mortgage (April 2004 - February, 2006); Senior Loan Officer, Total Mortgage Processing (January, 2004 - April, 2005); Loan Officer, 1st 2nd Mortgage Co., (February, 1996 - September, 2002); Paralegal/Commercial Debt Specialist, Leopold (February, 1993 - June, 1995). Community Service: Volunteer: Lakeview Fire District (May, 1991 - March, 1994).  Volunteer Supervisor, Stephens House for Veterans (November, 2017 - Present). Education: State University of New York College at Old Westbury, Bachelor of Science (BS), Political Science and Government (1987 - 1992).

Steve Fiasco was hired as the Northeaster Business Development Executive for Ampil, a division of Insight Investments, LLC, "...dedicated to delivering independent, customized vendor finance programs for technology manufacturers, systems integrators (SIs) and Managed Service Providers (MSPs), Costa Mesa, California.”  He is located in the Greater New York area. Previously, he was Business Development Officer, Summit Funding Group (May, 2017 - November, 2017); AVP, Tech Finance Sales Manager, CIT (March, 2014 - May, 2017); Business Development Manager, Macquarie Equipment Finance (February, 2012 - March, 2014); AVP Indirect, Channels, The CIT Group (May, 1997 - January, 2012); Director New Business Development, Channel Distribution, The CIT Group (March, 2004 - March, 2007); Area Manager, Avaya Financial Services (March, 2000 - March, 2004); Senior Credit Analyst, AT&T Capital Corporation (March, 1997 - March, 2000).  Education: New Jersey City University, BS, Criminal Justice (1994 - 1997).

Anthony Gonzalez was hired as MCA, Merchant Cash Advance, Small Business Loan, Unsecured Business Marketing Manager, WorldTech Business Solutions, LLC, Bangladesh.  Community Service: Volunteer, Mentor, Red Cross Youth.  Education: Dhaka City College, Bachelor of Business Administration, BBS, Business Administration and Management, General (2010 - 2015).

Tom Griffith was promoted to Vice President, Business Development, Philips Medical Capital (PMC), Wayne, Pennsylvania. He joined the firm September, 2002, rose to Senior Territory Manager; promoted, August, 2014, National Sales Manager, Financial Specialist. Prior, he was Account Manager, DLL, December, 1998 - September, 2002.

Mike Jones was hired as Senior Vice President, Vendor Finance, Ampil, a division of Insight Investments, LLC, Costa Mesa, California.  Previously, he was Senior Vice President, Vendor Finance, First American Equipment Finance (June, 2014 - December, 2017); Senior Vice President,  Creekridge Capital (May, 2010 - May, 2014); Vice President, Healthcare Finance, PNC Equipment Finance, formerly National City Commercial Capital (January, 2001 - April, 2010); Vice President, General Manager, National City Petroleum Finance, National City Commercial Capital (January, 2001 - January, 2006); Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Boulder Capital Group, a subsidiary of UniCapital Corporation (January, 1998 - December, 2000); Director of National Programs, Sunrise Resources (April, 1995 - December, 1998); Vice President, Harris Adacom Network Services (September, 1989 - March, 1995). Education: The University of Texas at Dallas, B.S. Accounting (1989).

Todd Leavey was hired as Vice President, GSC Financial, San Juan Capistrano, California. Previously, he was SVP, Credit & Lease Administration, Sertant Capital, LLC (March, 2017 - December, 2017).   He joined First Financial Corporate Services as Vice President, Credit and Syndications, 2007; promoted in 2012 to Vice President Finance; promoted Senior Vice President,  Finance, 2014. Education: California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Business Administration/Finance (1984 -1989).  California State University, Fullerton, MBA, Business Administration (1998-2001). Activities and Societies: Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity, Associated Students, Inc, Senator from School of Business. 

Amanda Payne was promoted to Lease Accounting Manager, LeaseQuery, Atlanta, Georgia. She joined firm November, 2017 as Technical Account Manager. Previously, she was Assurance Services, Ernst & Young, August, 2014 - October, 2017); Substitute Teacher, Opelika City Schools (August, 2012 - March, 2012); Assurance Intern, Ernst & Young (June, 2012 - August, 2012).  Education: Troy University, Master of Accountancy (2013 - 2014); University of Alabama, Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Accounting (2008 - 2012).

Marci Slagle, CLFP, was hired as Vice President, Originations, 36th Street Partners, Morristown, New Jersey. She is based in Salt Lake City. Previously, she was Vice President, Originations, SQN Capital Management (May, 2017 - March, 2018); Sr. Vice-President, VFI Corporate Finance (February, 2007 - May, 2007); Vice President, Tetra (January, 2005 - February, 2007); Executive Vice President, Amembal Capital (July, 1997 - July, 2005). Association: Vice President, CLFP Foundation (January, 2017 - Present).  Education: University of Utah, Business Management (1987).  Brighton High School (1984 -1987).



Leasing Industry Ads---Help Wanted
Now’s the Time to Apply

Equipment Leasing Account Executive

What sets CoreTech apart from other equipment leasing companies is our team members and impeccable reputation. Are you unhappy with the ethics of your company and the promises made to you? Come to Newport Beach and join us.

To learn more, please click here
CoreTech specializes in medium to
large size companies and firms

Over 100 law firms trust CoreTech for their leasing needs, why wouldn't you?






“Do” Diligence on New Vendors
By Michael J. Witt, Esq.

If you broker transactions or discount your paper, almost certainly your funding source requires you to represent a few basic facts about the equipment vendor. The funder wants to know, for example, that the vendor is a legitimate and reputable business entity, is in the business of regularly selling the kind of equipment being leased, has not made any hidden “side deals” with the lessee, and will perform any equipment service promised to the lessee. If you’re a broker who has been in business for any length of time, you’ve had at least one transaction that has gone wrong because of something the vendor did or didn’t do, and you’ve had to buy back the deal.

If you’re doing business with a vendor for the first time, you need to do a reasonable amount of “due diligence” before your start brokering or discounting transactions. Doing the proper amount of due diligence can be costly – if you choose to make it so – but there are a number of external sources you can consult that provide information absolutely free.

For starters, you should always search the online records on the division of corporations in the state in which the vendor is incorporated (or organized as a limited liability company or other registered entity.) The vast majority of states (Delaware, for example, is one of the few exceptions) offer this information absolutely free. Generally you can easily get to the right website by simply googling the words “division of corporations of [name of State].” Once there, you can get the status of any corporation, limited liability company, limited partnership or other entity (other than a sole proprietorship, which is not registered). If the entity is listed as not in “good standing” (for failure to pay its annual fees, for example), then this is red light or at least a very bright yellow light.

In addition, rather than spending money on a Duns & Bradstreet report, first see how much online business information you can get for free. At Mantra (, for example, you can often find out an entity’s annual sales volume, annual revenue, years in business, number of employees, branch locations, and more. (Free information can also be obtained at, and

Go also to customer complaint sites (for example, and Go to the online site of the vendor’s local Chamber of Commerce. Find out the vendor’s banks and trades, and call them for references, especially the vendor’s wholesalers, jobbers and other major suppliers. Pull a credit bureau report on the vendor’s majority owners, and if you don’t have accounts with any of the three national bureaus, ask them to pull them on themselves for free (at, for example) and send them to you (although they could be sanitized by the time they get to you).

I also recommend that you join to find out if the vendor is one of the 300 in the file with "unusual activity." Other information is also available, if they are in the file, and can be obtained for only $3.25 a search.

The sites above are free, but the Lease Police report automatically checks the phone number, searches the business address with Google and goes into corporate records with that state’s Secretary of State. In addition the company’s web site is reviewed and additional web sites are searched as needed. All of this work is done automatically. And a copy of the “due diligence” report becomes a record to indicate the search.

In short, there is tremendous amount of free or very low cost information you can get that you couldn’t have gotten ten years ago. Take advantage of it, do your diligence, and immunize yourself from buybacks.

Michael Witt was Managing Counsel at Wells Fargo & Co and Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Advanta Leasing Corporation. He is now in private practice in Iowa.

Michael J. Witt
4342 Oakwood Lane
West Des Moines, IA 50265
Land: 515.223.2352
Mobile: 515.868.1067



Majority of Baby Boomers Now Own a Smart Device
By Zoe Bernard, Business Insider

 A new study by the American Association of Retired Persons reports that baby boomers are consistently using new technologies. More and more Americans over the age of 50 are embracing smartphones, laptops, and desktops in order to stay in touch with their family and friends.

As this chart by Statista shows, the vast majority of people older than 50 years old own a smart device. While new technologies can often present a learning curve for older generations, it seems that smart gadgets have rendered themselves indispensable even for people who didn't grow up with them.


Fernando's View
By Fernando F. Croce

Comedy both withering (“The Death of Stalin”) and charming (“Claire’s Camera”) comes to theaters, while DVD releases offer intimate drama (“Last Flag Flying”), a provocative thriller (“Nocturama”), and lavish romance (“The Age of Innocence”).

In theaters:

The Death of Stalin (IFC Films): A virtuoso of withering political satire, writer-director Armando Ianucci (“In the Loop”) tackles his most ambitious project yet with this rollicking dark comedy, set in Russia during the chaotic final days of Stalinism. As Joseph Stalin (played by Adrian Mcloughlin) falls ill, the cabal of totalitarian buffoons around him scramble to see who’ll fill the dictator’s shoes. There’s Party Head Khrushchev (Steve Buscemi), bellicose Field Marshall Zhukov (Jason Isaacs), Foreign Minister Molotov (Michael Palin), and panicky General Secretary Malenkov (Jeffrey Tambor). As the threat of a coup hangs in the air, the venal characters continue to stab each other in the back for the ultimate fate of the nation. Mercilessly choreographing the farcical machinations of power, Ianucci and his tip-top cast find laughs in a volatile and timely territory.

Claire’s Camera (Cinema Guild): Tirelessly prolific and deceptively casual, Korean veteran Hong Sang-soo (“Right Now, Wrong Then”) sculpts miniature narratives that brim with wry humor and insight. In his latest film, he re-teams with redoubtable French actress Isabelle Huppert for a charming comedy-drama. Huppert stars as the eponymous Claire, a schoolteacher who stumbles into a romantic triangle while traveling to help a friend. Said triangle involves a film director (Jung Jin-young), his assistant (Kim Min-hee), and her former boss (Chang Mi-hee). Is Claire invested in these people, or is she moving them like pawns for her own benefit as an aspiring writer? Though Hong fans will notice many of the director’s airy trademarks, Huppert’s presence brings a warm and fresh new element into his portrait of unruly emotions. With subtitles.

Netflix Tip: A durable veteran in the British film industry, Lewis Gilbert (1920-2018) distinguished himself by directing some of the most eye-popping entries in the James Bond series. So check out Netflix for his best films, which include “Sink the Bismark!” (1960), “Alfie” (1966), “You Only Live Twice” (1967), “The Spy Who Loved Me” (1977), and “Educating Rita” (1983).


Last Flag Flying (Amazon Studios): Continuing his recent run of unpredictable films, Oscar-nominated director Richard Linklater (“Boyhood”) brings his own brand of intimate humanism to this semi-sequel to the beloved 1970s classic “The Last Detail.” Catching up with that movie’s three characters decades later, the story follows the former military men on a thorny new journey. Feisty, hard-drinking Sal (Bryan Cranston), hellraiser-turned-reverend Mueller (Laurence Fishburne) and timid Larry (Steve Carrell) meet again to go on the harrowing mission of burying Larry’s son, a soldier killed in action. Memories come up along the way, as well as revelations and decisions that shine a light on their respective lives. Balancing a somber mood with bursts of peppery humor, Linklater shows a mature side to his trademark gentleness, enormously helped by his actors’ performances.

Nocturama (Grasshopper Film): Acclaimed French director Bertrand Bonello (“Saint Laurent”) takes a mesmerizing walk on the dark side with this bold and provocative mix of thriller and drama. Its topic is an incendiary one: Terrorism in France, with the focus on a group of young, unaffected Parisians who plan explosions over the course of 12 hours. Chronicling the aftermath of the tragedy, the gang hides in a vast department store, where the kids help themselves to the expensive wares and spend a long night of music, clothes, fear, and guilt. Resembling another film about the unspeakable—Gus Van Sant’s “Elephant,” about a school shooting—Bonello’s tour de forceexamines the characters’ confusion and nihilism with a hypnotically detached camera. Certainly an unsettling experience, but also an unforgettable one. With subtitles.

The Age of Innocence (Criterion): A specialist in fierce and often brutal portraits of macho protagonists, Martin Scorsese surprised his fans by directing a period piece adapted from an Edith Wharton novel. Despite its genteel surfaces, however, this lavish 1993 drama has moments of emotional intensity as bold as anything in “Taxi Driver” or “Goodfellas.” Taking place in 1870s New York City, the story follows the corseted yet ardent emotions of Newland Archer (Daniel Day-Lewis), a successful lawyer engaged to a young socialite (Winona Ryder). His orderly life is upended when he falls in love with Ellen Olenska (Michelle Pfeiffer), a noblewoman whose headstrong behavior has made her an outcast in high society. Made with sumptuous style and an eye for the way elegant manners cloak piercing passion, this is one of Scorsese’s most unusual and heartfelt works.


Border Collie/Mix
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania  Adopt-a-Dog


ID: 37421497
8 Years, 2 months
Size: Medium
Color: Black/White
Declawed: No
Housetrained: Unknown
Site: Pennsylvania SPCA, Philadelphia
Stage: Available, Special Adoption, Beh

Philadelphia Headquarters
350 E. Erie Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19134)
(215) 426-6300

Monday-Friday: 1:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday: 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Adoption Fee: $150


Benefits of adopting from the Pennsylvania SPCA:
Spay or neuter surgery
Microchip with lifetime registration
Age-appropriate vaccines
Dogs: Distemper, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus, Bordetella plus first dose of canine influenza
Rabies vaccines (for animals 3 months & older)
Flea & tick prevention
Medical evaluation
Behavior evaluation
Wellness care from our medical staff for 48 hours post-adoption
Behavior phone consults with our Behavior & Training team
Discounts on training classes and individual sessions
The PSPCA will always take the animal back into our care if you are no longer able to keep them
If you have any questions about adoption, please contact

Adopt a Pet




Theresa Kabot, CLFP
in her Richard Sherman Jersey

“Do you want to buy my Richard Sherman Jersey?

“Ha ha… just kidding. I would never give it up!

“Congratulations to you and the 49ers.

“I think the Sherman still has some good years left.

“I’m sad to see him go. He is crazy, smart and fun!

“Sounds like we are getting a whole new team…

“You can relate, I’m sure…



“PS – your new QB is quite handsome indeed… ;)”


Theresa Kabot, CLFP
K2 Funding
Kabot Commercial Leasing LLC
Seattle Washington USA
commercial equipment financing


News Briefs----

ELFA State of Funding 2018 Report
 Available to Non-Members

BMW Financial to pay $2.2 Million to Settle
  Troops' Refund Claims on Canceled Car Leases

Amazon gaining on Walmart's market share
Suspecting that the trend will continue

The 10 Best Cities to Open a Quick-Service Restaurant
  Slide Show 

Equipment Leasing Account Executive

What sets CoreTech apart from other equipment leasing companies is our team members and impeccable reputation. Are you unhappy with the ethics of your company and the promises made to you? Come to Newport Beach and join us.

To learn more, please click here
CoreTech specializes in medium to
large size companies and firms

Over 100 law firms trust CoreTech for their leasing needs, why wouldn't you?



You May Have Missed---

Streaming Soon: A Fight Over AT&T, Time Warner, and the Future of TV


All Men are Dogs
   by Barry M. Marks, Esq., CLFP    


egg sucking dog  
dope sniffing dog 
black dog   
smack dog 
mack dog   
matter-of-fact dog       
blunt dog   
hunt dog    
runt dog       

(other dog)
ubi sunt dog?
all men are dogs for something

big dog 
pig dog 
want-a-big-rig dog
hog dog
dog dog
modern-day blog dog

other dog

mud dog
bud dog
druggie drugged drug dog
lover dog
mother dog
sister-loving brother dog

always there are other dogs
 always there's another dog

name dog
blame dog
they may seem the same dog 
hot dog
bot dog
bored until they rot dog 
that is what I'm not dog 
you are but I'm not dog
this is what I've got dog
always there's another dog 
always there's an other dog

   from Possible Crocodiles
   Poems by Barry Marks



Sports Briefs---

49ers trade center Daniel Kilgore to Dolphins 

Raiders add WR Jordy Nelson and RB Doug Martin
    cut WR Michael Crabtree

Michael Crabtree Rumors:
 Reportedly to Visit Ravens After Raiders Release

Jay Gruden: “No-brainer” to trade for Alex Smith

49ers lose Carlos Hyde, replace him with ex-Viking Jerick McKinnon


California Nuts Briefs---

$3 million listing: Amid affordability crisis,
   sales of luxury homes double in the Bay Area 

George Lucas Museum Breaks Ground in LA



“Gimme that Wine”

Alaska Air's Wine Flies Free Program Drives Winery Sales

Long-Shuttered Sonoma Winery is Back in Business

Why the liquor industry wants to get self-driving cars on the road

New Single Semester Certifications for Wine Professionals

John Anthony Family Wines buys Napa Carneros vineyard

Six Tasting Rooms You Need to try on Carmel Valley Road

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page


This Day in History

     1565 - Smoking of tobacco was introduced to England by John Hawkins. Hawkins was primarily a slave trader, carrying Africans to the West Indies. Most of his dealings were with the Spanish in the West Indies, but during his second trip to the region, he visited the small French colony in Florida and learned to smoke tobacco from the colonists, who had learned from the Indians. Hawkins returned to Eng­land with a shipload of tobacco. He described the Indian use of the plant this way: “The Floridians when they travel have a kind of herb dried, who with a cane and an earthen cap in the end, with fire, and dried herbs put together, doe sucke thorow the cane the smoke thereof, which smoke satisfieth their hun­ger, and therwith they live foure or five days without meat or drinke, and this all the Frenchmen used for this purpose.”
    1621 - The first Indian appeared to colonists in Plymouth, Massachusetts. An unidentified Pilgrim had gone out fowling and, near a creek about a mile and a half from the plantation, twelve Pilgrims passed near the place he was hiding. He rushed back to Plymouth and raised the alarm. Myles Standish and Francis Cooke, who had been working in the woods when the alarm went out, rushed back to the little community, leaving their tools behind them. The colonists armed themselves and went back to the place where the Indians had been seen, but found none. In the evening, the men built a great fire near the place where the Indians had been seen.  Supposedly, Samoset, a Mohican, visited the settlers with the greeting, "Welcome, Englishmen! My name is Samoset."
    1687 - Father Eusebio Kino (1645-1711), 42, was an Italian-born Jesuit missionary, geographer, explorer, cartographer and astronomer in the service of Spain.  For the last 24 years of his life he worked in the region then known as the Pimeria Alta, modern-day Sonora, Mexico and southern Arizona. He explored the region and worked with the indigenous population, including primarily the Sobaipuri and other Upper Piman groups. He proved that Baja California is not an island by leading an overland expedition there. By the time of his death he had established 24 missions and visitas (country chapels or visiting stations.)
    1751 – James Madison (d. 1836), the 4th President, was born in Port Conway, Virginia Colony.  He is hailed as the "Father of the Constitution" for his pivotal role in drafting and promoting the Constitution and Bill of Rights.  He served as both a member of the Virginia House of Delegates and as a member of the Continental Congress prior to the Constitutional Convention. After the Convention, he became one of the leaders in the movement to ratify it, both nationally and in Virginia. His collaboration with Hamilton and Jay produced “The Federalist Papers,” among the most important treatises in support of the Constitution. Madison changed his political views during his life. During deliberations on the Constitution, he favored a strong national government, but later preferred stronger state governments, before settling between the two extremes late in his life.  In 1789, Madison became a leader in the new House of Representatives, drafting many basic laws. He is noted for drafting the first ten amendments to the Constitution, and thus is known also as the "Father of the Bill of Rights."  He worked closely with President Washington to organize the new federal government. Breaking with Hamilton and the Federalist Party in 1791, he and Thomas Jefferson organized the Democratic-Republican Party. In response to the Alien and Sedition Acts, Jefferson and Madison drafted the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions arguing that states can nullify unconstitutional laws.  As Jefferson's Secretary of State (1801–09), Madison supervised the Louisiana Purchase, which doubled the nation's size. Madison succeeded Jefferson as President in 1809, was re-elected in 1813, and presided over renewed prosperity for several years. After the failure of diplomatic protests and a trade embargo against England, he led the U.S. into the War of 1812. The war was an administrative morass, as the United States had neither a strong army nor financial system. As a result, Madison afterward supported a stronger national government and a strong military, as well as the national bank, which he had long opposed.
    1789 - Young Enoch Brooks inscribed his name in this children's Bible in Princeton, New Jersey. Now a rare artifact of Americana, Brooks' book is one of four extant copies of “A Curious Hieroglyphick Bible.” With nearly five hundred woodcuts by American artists, this Bible was the most ambitious woodcut volume produced in America up to that time. He was not only a prolific printer of children’s books but at one time owned more than 20 book stores in the Boston, MA area.
    1791 - Thomas Paine's “The Rights of Man” was published in London.  Consisting of 31 articles, it posits that popular political revolution is permissible when a government does not safeguard the natural rights of its people.  Paine argues that the interests of the monarch and his people are united, and insists that the French Revolution should be understood as one which attacks the despotic principles of the French monarchy, not the king himself, and he takes the Bastille, the main prison in Paris, to symbolize the despotism that had been overthrown.  Human rights originate in Nature thus, rights cannot be granted via political charter, because that implies that rights are legally revocable, and, as a result, would be privileges:  It is a perversion of terms to say that a charter gives rights. It operates by a contrary effect - that of taking rights away. Rights are inherently in all the inhabitants; but charters, by annulling those rights, in the majority, leave the right, by exclusion, in the hands of a few.  They consequently are instruments of injustice.  The fact, therefore, must be that the individuals, themselves, each, in his own personal and sovereign right, entered into a contract with each other to produce a government: and this is the only mode in which governments have a right to arise, and the only principle on which they have a right to exist.  Government's sole purpose is safeguarding the individual and his/her inherent, inalienable rights; each societal institution that does not benefit the nation is illegitimate, especially monarchy and aristocracy.  “Rights of Man” concludes in proposing practical reformations of English government: “a written constitution composed by a national assembly, in the American mold; the elimination of aristocratic titles, because democracy is incompatible with primogeniture, which leads to the despotism of the family; a national budget without allotted military and war expenses; lower taxes for the poor, and subsidised education for them; and a progressive income tax weighted against wealthy estates to prevent the emergence of a hereditary aristocracy.”
    1798 - Birthday of Abigail Fillmore (d. 1853), first wife of Millard Fillmore, 13th president of the US, at Stillwater, NY. It is said that the White House was without any books until Abigail Fillmore, formerly a teacher, made a room on the second floor into a library. Within a year, Congress appropriated $250 for the president to spend on books for the White House.
    1802 - The Army Corps of Engineers was established by Congress to found and operate the United States Military Academy--the first military school in the United States--for the purpose of educating and training young men in the theory and practice of military science. Located at West Point, New York, the U.S. Military Academy is often simply known as West Point.  The Continental Army first occupied West Point, New York, on 27 January 1778; and is the oldest continuously-operating Army post in the United States.  Between 1778 and 1780, the Polish engineer and military hero Tadeusz Kosciuszko oversaw the construction of the garrison defenses.  The Great Hudson River Chain and high ground above the narrow "S" curve in the river enabled the Continental Army to prevent British Royal Navy ships from sailing upriver and thus dividing the Colonies.  As commander of the fortifications at West Point, Benedict Arnold committed his act of treason, attempting to sell the fort to the British.  After Arnold betrayed the patriot cause, the Army changed the name of the fortifications at West Point, New York, to Fort Clinton.  With the peace after the American Revolutionary War, various ordnance and military stores were left deposited at West Point.
    1802 - Absalom Jones (1746-1818) was ordained as the first Black priest in Episcopal Church in the US.
    1813 - Lorenzo Delmonico (d. 1881) was born in Marengo, Switzerland.  The original Delmonico's opened in 1827 in a rented pastry shop at 23 William Street in lower Manhattan, and appeared in a list of restaurants in 1830. It was opened by the brothers John and Peter Delmonico, from Ticino, Switzerland. In 1831, they were joined by their nephew, Lorenzo Delmonico, who eventually became responsible for the restaurant's wine list and menu. He soon transformed the business into one of the first, best, most elegant and famous restaurants in the country, Delmonico’s. Lorenzo was not a chef, but he purchased the food and created the very extensive menu. He helped make the concept of the 'restaurant' an acceptable and successful one.  The business was so successful that from 1865 to 1888 it expanded to four restaurants of the same name. At various times, there were Delmonico's at ten locations. Delmonico's vacated the six-story Delmonico Building at Fifth Avenue and 26th Street in 1899. The edifice was sold to John B. Martin, owner of the Martin Hotel, in May 1901.  In 1919, Edward L.C. Robins purchased Delmonico's, only to see it closed in 1923 as a result of changing dining habits due to Prohibition. That location was the final incarnation of Delmonico's with continuity to the original.  The current Delmonico’s is at 56 Beaver Street.
    1827 – The first black-owned newspaper in the US, "Freedom's Journal" began publishing.  Founded by Rev. Peter Williams, Jr. and other free black men in New York City, it intended to appeal to the 300,000 free blacks in the Northern United States, most of whom were freed after the Revolution by state abolition laws.  Manumissions in the South after the war increased the proportion of free blacks from less than 1% to nearly 10% of the black population in the Upper South. In New York State, a gradual emancipation law was passed in 1799, granting freedom to children born to slaves. Its "gradual" provisions meant that the last slaves were not freed until 1827, the year the paper was founded.
    1836 - Houston retreats from Santa Anna's army. Less than a week after the disastrous defeat of Texas rebels at the Alamo, the newly-commissioned Texan General Sam Houston begins a series of strategic retreats to buy time to train his ill-prepared army. Revolutionary Texans had only formally announced their independence from Mexico 11 days earlier. On March 6, 1836, the separatists chose Sam Houston to be the commander-in-chief of the revolutionary army. Houston immediately departed for Gonzales, Texas, where the main force of the revolutionary army was stationed. When he arrived, he found that the Texan army consisted of 374 poorly dressed and ill-equipped men. Most had no guns or military experience, and they had only two days of rations. Houston had little time to dwell on the situation, because he learned that the Mexican general Santa Anna was staging a siege of the Alamo in San Antonio. Before Houston could prepare his troops to rush to aid the defenders, however, word arrived that Santa Anna had wiped them out on March 6. Scouts reported that Santa Anna's troops were heading east toward Gonzales. Unprepared to confront the Mexican army with his poorly trained force, Houston began a series of strategic retreats designed to give him enough time to whip his army into fighting shape. Houston's decision to retreat won him little but scorn from the Texas rebels. His troops and officers were eager to engage the Mexicans, and they chafed at Houston's insistence on learning proper field maneuvers. Houston wisely continued to organize, train, and equip his troops so they would be prepared to meet Santa Anna's army. Finally, after nearly a month of falling back, Houston ordered his men to turn around and head south to meet Santa Anna's forces. On April 21, Houston led his 783 troops in an attack on Santa Anna's force of nearly twice that number near the confluence of Buffalo Bayou and the San Jacinto River. With the famous cry, "Remember the Alamo," the Texans stormed the surprised Mexican forces. After a brief attempt at defense, the Mexican soldiers broke into a disorganized retreat, allowing the Texans to isolate and slaughter them. In a stunning victory, Houston's army succeeded in killing or capturing nearly the entire Mexican force, including General Santa Anna, who was taken prisoner. Only two Texans were killed and 30 wounded. Fearful of execution, Santa Anna signed an order calling for the immediate withdrawal of all Mexican troops from Texas soil. The Mexicans never again seriously threatened the independence of the Lone Star Republic.
    1836 – Andrew Smith Hallidie (d. 1900) was born London.  He was the promoter of the Clay Street Hill Railroad in San Francisco, the world's first practical cable car system, and Hallidie is often therefore regarded as the inventor of the cable car and father of the present day San Francisco cable car system, although both claims are open to dispute. He also introduced the manufacture of wire rope to California, and at an early age, was a prolific builder of bridges in the Californian interior.  Accounts differ as to exactly how involved Hallidie was in the inception of the Clay Street Hill Railway. One version has him taking over the promotion of the line when the original promoter, Benjamin Brooks, failed to raise the necessary capital. In another version, Hallidie was the instigator, inspired by a desire to reduce the suffering incurred by the horses that hauled streetcars up Jackson Street, from Kearny to Stockton Street.  There is also doubt as to when exactly the first run of the cable car occurred. The franchise required a first run no later than August 1, 1873, however at least one source reports that the run took place a day late, on August 2, but that the city chose not to void the franchise. Some accounts say that the first gripman hired by Hallidie looked down the steep hill from Jones and refused to operate the car, so Hallidie took the grip himself and ran the car down the hill and up again without any problems.  However, given Hallidie's previous experience of cables and cable haulage systems, it seems unlikely that he did not contribute to the design of the system.  The Clay Street line started regular service on September 1, 1873 and was a financial success. In addition, Hallidie's patents on the cable car design were stringently enforced on cable car promoters around the world, and made him a rich man. 
    1846 - In San Francisco, Colonel Jose Castro issued a proclamation that declared John Frémont and his party to be a band of highwaymen.  José Castro was a California, born in Monterey, was acting governor of Alta California in 1835-1836, and Commandante General of the Mexican Army in Alta California at the time of the 1846 Bear Flag Revolt and the Mexican-American War of 1846-1848.  In 1844-45, he became a leader of the revolt against Alta California Governor Micheltorena, once again becoming Commandante General of California, checking Fremont’s movements, and leading Alta California forces against the Americans.  Castro Street and the Castro District in San Francisco are named for him.
    1861 – How soon they forget!  Edward Clark became Governor of Texas, replacing Sam Houston, who was evicted from the office for refusing to take an oath of loyalty to the Confederacy.
    1865 - Slaves were assigned to military duty in the Confederate Army by a bill signed by President Jefferson Davis. During the Civil War, blacks not only had related jobs, but also were uniformed soldiers and officers. CSA General Patrick Cleburne had suggested enlisting slaves a year before, but few in the Confederate leadership considered the proposal, since slavery was the foundation of southern society. One politician asked, "What did we go to war for, if not to protect our property?" Another suggested, "If slaves will make good soldiers, our whole theory of slavery is wrong." General Lee weighed in on the issue and asked the Confederate government for help. "We must decide whether slavery shall be extinguished by our enemies and the slaves be used against us, or use them ourselves." Lee asked that the slaves be freed as a condition of fighting, but the bill that passed the Confederate Congress on March 13 did not stipulate freedom for those who served. The measure did nothing to stop the destruction of the Confederacy. Several thousand blacks were enlisted in the Rebel cause, but they could not begin to balance out the nearly 200,000 blacks that fought for the Union.
    1868 - The US Senate began its trial to impeach President Andrew Johnson. For the first time in the nation’s history, a president was impeached. Pres. Johnson was accused by Congress of having violated the Tenure of Office Act of 1867, which forbade the president to discharge any federal officer holder appointed “by and with the consent of the Senate.” Johnson tested the act by removing Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton on February 21. The impeachment was brought largely because the radical Republicans bitterly opposed Johnson’s plans for Reconstruction. Johnson’s firing of Stanton gave them the opportunity they had been seeking. On February 24, the House of Representatives voted to impeach. The US Senate trial began this date. Sworn in as president after Lincoln's assassination in April 1865, President Johnson enacted a lenient Reconstruction policy for the defeated South, including almost total amnesty to ex-Confederates, a program of rapid restoration of U.S.-state status for the seceded states, and the approval of new, local Southern governments, which were able to legislate "black codes" that preserved the system of slavery in all but name. The Republican-dominated Congress greatly opposed Johnson's Reconstruction program and passed the "Radical Reconstruction" by repeatedly overriding the president's vetoes. Under the Radical Reconstruction, local Southern governments gave way to federal military rule, and African-American men in the South were granted the constitutional right to vote. In March, 1867, in order further to weaken Johnson's authority, Congress passed the Tenure of Office Act over his veto. The act prohibited the president from removing federal office holders, including Cabinet members, who had been confirmed by the Senate, without the consent of the Senate. It was designed to shield members of Johnson's Cabinet like Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton, who was appointed during the Lincoln administration and was a leading ally of the so-called Radical Republicans in Congress. In the fall of 1867, Johnson attempted to test the constitutionality of the act by replacing Stanton with General Ulysses S. Grant. However, the Supreme Court refused to rule on the case, and Grant turned the office back to Stanton after the Senate passed a measure in protest of the dismissal. On February 21, 1868, Johnson decided to rid himself of Stanton once and for all and appointed General Lorenzo Thomas, an individual far less favorable to the Congress than Grant, as secretary of war. Stanton refused to yield, barricading himself in his office, and the House of Representatives, which had already discussed impeachment after Johnson's first dismissal of Stanton, initiated formal impeachment proceedings against the president. On February 24, the House voted 11 impeachment articles against President Johnson. Nine of the articles cited his violations of the Tenure of Office Act; one cited his opposition to the Army Appropriations Act of 1867 (designed to deprive the president of his constitutional position as commander in chief of the U.S. Army); and one accused Johnson of bringing "into disgrace, ridicule, hatred, contempt, and reproach the Congress of the United States" through certain controversial speeches. On March 13, according to the rules set out in Section 3 of Article I of the Constitution, the impeachment trial of President Johnson began in the Senate. Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase presided over the proceedings, which were described as theatrical. On May 16 and again on May 26, the Senate voted on the charges brought against President Johnson. Both times the vote was 35 for conviction and 19 for acquittal, with seven moderate Republicans joining 12 Democrats in voting against what was a weak case for impeachment. Because both votes fell short--by one vote--of the two- thirds majority needed to convict Johnson, he was judged not guilty and remained in office. Nevertheless, he chose not to actively seek reelection on the Democratic ticket. In November, Ulysses S. Grant, who supported the Republicans' Radical Reconstruction policies, was elected President. In 1875, after two failed bids, Johnson won reelection to Congress as a U.S. senator from Tennessee. He died less than four months after taking office at the age of 66. Fifty-one years later, the Supreme Court declared the Tenure of Office Act unconstitutional in its ruling in Myers v. United States.
    1882 - US Senate ratified a treaty establishing the Red Cross.  The American Red Cross was established in Washington, D.C. on May 21, 1881, by Clara Barton, who became the first president of the organization.
    1887 - Chester Greenwood of Maine received a patent for earmuffs.
    1900 - At an American League meeting in Chicago, Ban Johnson announced that an A.L. team will be placed in Chicago to ensure the stability of the league. Other franchises are in Kansas City, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Detroit, Cleveland, and Buffalo. In an agreement with Chicago National League officials, the A.L. club will be situated on the south side of the city and will be permitted to use the nickname Chicago White Stockings, formerly used by the N.L. team. However, the White Stockings will not be able to use the word Chicago in their official name. The new franchise, known as the White Sox, will be the 1901 AL champion in the junior circuit's inaugural season as a Major League.
    1906 – Lloyd Waner (d. 1982) was born in Harrah, OK.  He made his Major League debut in 1927, batting .355 with 223 hits, the latter figure establishing a NL rookie record that stood into the 21st century. Waner will hit over .300 in 10 of his first 12 seasons, compiling a career mark of .316 with 2,459 hits, striking out just 173 times in an 18-season major league career with several clubs. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1967.
    1906 – Comedian Henny Youngman (d. 1998) was born in London.
    1916 - The 7th (Custer’s old unit) and 10th (The Buffalo Soldiers) US cavalry regiments under Gen. John J. Pershing, crossed into Mexico to join the hunt for Pancho Villa.  Pershing organized and commanded the Mexican Punitive Expedition, a combined armed force of 10,000 men that penetrated 350 miles into Mexico. They routed Villa's revolutionaries, but failed to capture him. 
    1922 - Drummer Willie “Rough Dried” Williams (d. 1988) was born Lake Village, AR.  Williams backed up Howlin' Wolf with Detroit Jr. before Willie Dixon and Cadillac Baby pulled him into the studio with teams of crack local session men, one of which included Little Mack on harp.
    1923 - A great improvement in radio receivers was advertised. The new models had a concealed speaker and eliminated the need for headphones, which were considered a nuisance because they were so heavy to wear and messed up hairdos. The new radios were also said to have a ‘foolproof’ design.
    1926 – Comedian, actor, producer, fundraiser Jerry Lewis was born Joseph Levitch (d. 2017) in Newark, NJ.  Known for his slapstick humor in film, television, stage and radio, his career began in 1946, with Dean Martin, performing in live nightclubs, television programs, radio shows and theatrical movies before 1956, when the two men parted ways, after ten years as a duo. During that period, there was no hotter entertainment act than Martin & Lewis!  Then as a solo, Lewis went on to star in many films, and television shows and appearances, music albums, live concerts and more. From 1966 to 2010, Lewis hosted the annual Labor Day Telethon for the Muscular Dystrophy Association and served as national chairman of the organization, raising over $2.6 billion.
    1926 – Robert Goddard launched the first liquid-fueled rocket, at Auburn, MA.

    1932 – 37 year-old Babe Ruth signed a one-year contract for $75,000 and a percentage of the exhibition gate. Legend has it the Bambino signed a blank contract with the amount filled in later by New York Yankees owner Jacob Ruppert.
    1932 - With six million unemployed, chaos in Berlin, starvation and ruin, the threat of Marxism, and a very uncertain future, the German people turn to Hitler by the millions. In the presidential election, Hitler receives over eleven million votes (11,339,446) or 30% of the total. Hindenburg receives 18,651,497 votes or 49%. Since Hindenburg does not get the majority, a run-off election is held. In the campaign that follows, Hitler crisscrosses Germany in an airplane, descending from the clouds into the arms of growing numbers of fanatics, at ever larger rallies. He gives them a positive message, promising something for everyone, then ascends back into the clouds. "In the Third Reich every German girl will find a husband!" - Hitler once promises.
    1932 – Hunger marches were taking place throughout the country; the Bonus marchers are expelled from Washington. President Herbert Hoover sends a secret message to Congress advising it not to cut the pay of Army or Navy personnel because they may be needed to put down the marchers, whose numbers seem to be growing. He believes they are communist inspired as are the hunger marches in England and Germany. The economy is not in that bad of shape as the newspapers report, he adds.    
    1940 - “The Road to Singapore,” starring Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, and Dorothy Lamour, opened. The comedy was the first of seven ‘Road’ pictures, which brought fame and fortune to its actors.
    1941 - The Benny Goodman Sextet cuts “Air Mail Special.”
    1942 - Two tornadoes, 24 minutes apart, struck Baldwin, MS, resulting in 65 deaths.
    1944 - Top Hits
Mairzy Doats - The Merry Macs
Besame Mucho - The Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra (vocal: Bob Eberly & Kitty Kallen
No Love, No Nothin’ - Ella Mae Morse
Rosalita - Al Dexter
    1945 - PIERCE, FRANCIS Jr., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Pharmacist's Mate First Class, U.S. Navy serving with 2d Battalion, 24th Marines, 4th Marine Division. Place and date: Iwo Jima, 15 and 16 March 1945. Entered service at lowa Born: 7 December 1924, Earlville, lowa. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while attached to the 2d Battalion, 24th Marines, 4th Marine Division, during the Iwo Jima campaign, 15 and 16 March 1945. Almost continuously under fire while carrying out the most dangerous volunteer assignments, Pierce gained valuable knowledge of the terrain and disposition of troops. Caught in heavy enemy rifle and machinegun fire which wounded a corpsman and 2 of the 8 stretcher bearers who were carrying 2 wounded marines to a forward aid station on 15 March, Pierce quickly took charge of the party, carried the newly wounded men to a sheltered position, and rendered first aid. After directing the evacuation of 3 of the casualties, he stood in the open to draw the enemy's fire and, with his weapon blasting, enabled the litter bearers to reach cover. Turning his attention to the other 2 casualties he was attempting to stop the profuse bleeding of 1 man when Japanese fired from a cave less than 20 yards away and wounded his patient again. Risking his own life to save his patient, Pierce deliberately exposed himself to draw the attacker from the cave and destroyed him with the last of his ammunition then lifting the wounded man to his back, he advanced unarmed through deadly rifle fire across 200 feet of open terrain. Despite exhaustion and in the face of warnings against such a suicidal mission, he again traversed the same fire-swept path to rescue the remaining marine. On the following morning, he led a combat patrol to the sniper nest and, while aiding a stricken marine, was seriously wounded. Refusing aid for himself, he directed treatment for the casualty, at the same time maintaining protective fire for his comrades. Completely fearless, completely devoted to the care of his patients, Pierce inspired the entire battalion. His valor in the face of extreme peril sustains and enhances the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.
    1946 - The first Medal of Honor awarded to a soldier of Japanese ancestry was conferred upon Private First Class Sadao S. Munemori of Company A, 100th Infantry Battalion, 442dn Combat Team, for action near Seravezza, Italy, on April 5, 1945, when he knocked out two machine guns with grenades and saved the livers of two of his companions by diving on an exploding grenade. The medal was presented posthumously to his mother, Mrs. Nawa Munemori.
    1947 - "The Best Years of Our Lives," produced by Samuel Goldwyn, was a big favorite, winning the Best Picture prize at the 19th Academy Awards held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. Actor/producer/comedian Jack Benny hosted the glittering gala. "The Best Years of Our Lives" won Oscars for Best Director (William Wyler); Actor (Fredric March); Supporting Actor (Harold Russell); Film Editing (Daniel Mandell); Screenplay (Robert E. Sherwood); and a shared award with "The Jolson Story" for Best Score. Other awards for the best of 1946: Actress: Olivia de Havilland in "To Each His Own," and Actress in a Supporting Role: Anne Baxter in "The Razor’s Edge." The Best Song was "On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe" (from "The Harvey Girls") by Johnny Mercer and Harry Warren. Foreign-made films showed up in these Oscars, bringing an end to Hollywood’s then exclusive rights to the coveted awards. Of the foreign movies nominated, three were British ("Henry V" - producer, Laurence Olivier; "Brief Encounter" starring Celia Johnson; "Perfect Strangers" which won the Oscar for Best Writing/Original Story [Clemence Dane]), one was French ("Les Enfants du paradis," an original screenplay by Jacques Prévert) and one Italian ("Roma, città aperta," screenplay written by Sergio Amidei, Federico Fellini).
    1951 - The comic strip, "Dennis the Menace," appeared for the first time in 18 newspapers across the U.S. The strip became an international favorite in thousands of newspapers and spawned a CBS-TV program that starred Jay North as Dennis. The series lasted for several seasons and is still seen in syndicated re-runs. A somewhat popular movie starring Walter Matthau as Mr. Wilson and Christopher Lloyd as the bad guy was released in 1993.
    1952 - Top Hits
“Slowpoke” - Pee Wee King
“Tell Me Why” - The Four Aces
“Please, Mr. Sun” - Johnnie Ray
“Wondering” - Webb Pierce
    1955 – “The Ballad of Davy Crockett" by Bill Hayes reached the number one spot on the US Pop music charts, where it would stay for five weeks. The song sold more than 7,000,000 records on more than 20 different labels worldwide.
    1955 - Epic Records releases Roy Hamilton's "Unchained Melody," which will climb to #6. The Righteous Brothers would update the song ten years later and take it to #4.
    1956 - In a rally in Birmingham, Alabama, Asa Carter, the executive secretary of the North Alabama White Citizen's Council, charged that rock and roll was introduced to white teenagers by the N.A.A.C.P. and other pro-integration forces. He initiated a campaign to pressure radio stations to bar what he termed "immoral music."
    1956 - Elvis Presley's first album is released by RCA. The self-titled disc would sell over a million copies and become The King's first Gold record.
    1958 - “The Long Hot Summer,” starring Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, and Orson Welles, opens in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Newman, who won the Cannes Film Festival award as Best Actor for his performance in the film, married Woodward the same year.  The pairing was one of Hollywood's longest lasting marriages.
    1958 - The Quarry Men, with both John Lennon and Paul McCartney playing guitar, perform at the Morgue Skiffle Cellar in Oakhill Park.
    1958 - The Ford Motor Company produced its 50 millionth automobile, a Thunderbird, averaging almost a million cars a year since the company's founding.
    1960 - Top Hits
The Theme from "A Summer Place" - Percy Faith
“Wild One” - Bobby Rydell
“Baby (You’ve Got What It Takes)” - Dinah Washington & Brook Benton
“He’ll Have to Go” - Jim Reeves
    1960 - National Football League owners voted to allow the Chicago Cardinals to move to St. Louis. The Cardinals are generally regarded as the oldest continuing operation in pro football, having been founded as the Morgan Athletic Club, a neighborhood team in 1899. The Cardinals remained in St. Louis through the 1987 season after which owner Bill Bidwill transferred the team to Phoenix, AZ.
    1961 – New York approved a bond issue for the construction of a 55,000-seat stadium on the site of the 1939-40 World Fair in Queens’ Flushing Meadows area. Shea Stadium was inaugurated three years later as the new home of the New York Mets.  It was the home of the Mets through the 2008 season, after which it was dismantled to make way for the Mets’ new and current home, Citi Field.
    1961 - President John F. Kennedy sets up the Alliance for Progress.
        1962 - Wing Luke becomes the first non-white to be elected to the Seattle City Council, and the highest Asian-American elected official in the continental US at the time.
    1962 - Although he is about to be dropped by Columbia because his Big Band style records weren't selling, Bobby Vinton is allowed to lay down a couple of vocal efforts. The results would produce the first of his thirty, US Top 40 hits, "Roses Are Red," which would top the Billboard chart by next June.
    1963 - Peter, Paul and Mary's "Puff the Magic Dragon" is released in the US, where it will reach #2. Although banned by some radio stations who thought the song was about drugs, it is really just a story about a little boy growing up, according to its writer, Peter Yarrow.
    1964 - Motown Records released Mary Wells' "My Guy," written and produced by Smokey Robinson.  Wells' teaming with Robinson led to a succession of hit singles. Their first collaboration, 1962's "The One Who Really Loves You", was Wells' first smash hit, peaking at No. 2 on the R&B chart and No. 8 on the Hot 100.  Motown released the similar-sounding "You Beat Me to the Punch" a few months later. The song became her first R&B No. 1 single and peaked at No. 9 on the pop chart.
    1964 – Paul Hornung and Alex Karras were reinstated by the NFL after serving one-year suspensions for gambling.  Hornung, league MVP in 1961 with the Green Bay Packers and Karras, an All-Pro defensive lineman for the Detroit Lions, were forced to miss the 1963 season by NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle after it was discovered that they had each regularly bet on the outcomes of their team’s games (Hornung had bet up to $500 on games while Karras had placed bets ranging from $50 to $100). In addition, both Hornung and Karras had kept fast company including being seen with friends who were also reputed to have connections to gambling and organized crime. Five other members of the Lions; Joe Schmidt, Wayne Walker, John Gordy, Gary Lowe and Sam Williams, were each fined $2,000 by Rozelle for betting on the Packers in the 1962 championship game against the New York Giants, which Green Bay won. Karras was asked by the league to sell his one-third interest in Detroit’s Lindell AC Bar because of mob influences and reputed gambling activities taking place there. Karras had threatened to retire rather than sell the bar, but later relented and sold his share, which paved the way for his reinstatement. Both Hornung and Karras admitted their transgressions and accepted their punishments. Their contrition was enough for Rozelle to allow them to come back for the 1964 season and resume their careers. During a game in 1964, Karras refused to make a call of the opening coin toss, telling the referee that he “wasn’t permitted to gamble.”
    1965 - The Rolling Stones were at #1 on the UK singles chart with "The Last Time," the band's third UK #1.
    1966 - RASCON, ALFRED V., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Specialist Fourth Class, U.S. Army, Reconnaissance Platoon, Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry,173d Airborne Brigade (Separate) Place and date: Republic of Vietnam, 16 March 1966 Born: 1945, Chihuahua, Mexico Citation: Specialist Four Alfred Rascon, distinguished himself by a series of extraordinarily courageous acts on 16 March 1966, while assigned as a medic to the Reconnaissance Platoon, Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Infantry, 173d Airborne Brigade (Separate). While moving to reinforce its sister battalion under intense enemy attack, the Reconnaissance Platoon came under heavy fire from a numerically superior enemy force. The intense enemy fire from crew-served weapons and grenades severely wounded several point squad soldiers. Specialist Rascon, ignoring directions to stay behind shelter until covering fire could be provided, made his way forward. He repeatedly tried to reach the severely wounded point machine-gunner laying on an open enemy trail, but was driven back each time by the withering fire. Disregarding his personal safety, he jumped to his feet, ignoring flying bullets and exploding grenades to reach his comrade. To protect him from further wounds, he intentionally placed his body between the soldier and enemy machine guns, sustaining numerous shrapnel injuries and a serious wound to the hip. Disregarding his serious wounds he dragged the larger soldier from the fire-raked trail. Hearing the second machine-gunner yell that he was running out of ammunition, Specialist Rascon, under heavy enemy fire crawled back to the wounded machine-gunner stripping him of his bandoleers of ammunition, giving them to the machine-gunner who continued his suppressive fire. Specialist Rascon fearing the abandoned machine gun, its ammunition and spare barrel could fall into enemy hands made his way to retrieve them. On the way, he was wounded in the face and torso by grenade fragments, but disregarded these wounds to recover the abandoned machine gun, ammunition and spare barrel items, enabling another soldier to provide added suppressive fire to the pinned-down squad. In searching for the wounded, he saw the point grenadier being wounded by small arms fire and grenades being thrown at him. Disregarding his own life and his numerous wounds, Specialist Rascon reached and covered him with his body absorbing the blasts from the exploding grenades, and saving the soldier's life, but sustaining additional wounds to his body. While making his way to the wounded point squad leader, grenades were hurled at the sergeant. Again, in complete disregard for his own life, he reached and covered the sergeant with his body, absorbing the full force of the grenade explosions. Once more Specialist Rascon was critically wounded by shrapnel, but disregarded his own wounds to continue to search and aid the wounded. Severely wounded, he remained on the battlefield, inspiring his fellow soldiers to continue the battle. After the enemy broke contact, he disregarded aid for himself, instead treating the wounded and directing their evacuation. Only after being placed on the evacuation helicopter did he allow aid to be given to him. Specialist Rascon's extraordinary valor in the face of deadly enemy fire, his heroism in rescuing the wounded, and his gallantry by repeatedly risking his own life for his fellow soldiers are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.
    1968 - The Byrds received a gold record for the album, "Greatest Hits," which featured "Turn! Turn! Turn!," written by Pete Seeger (excerpted from the Book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible); "Eight Miles High;" "Mr. Spaceman;" "Mr. Tambourine Man;" "All I Really Want To Do;" and "My Back Pages." The group consisted of Roger McGuinn, David Crosby, Gene Clark, Chris Hillman and Mike Clarke. Kevin Kelly, Gram Parsons, Clarence White, John York and Gene Parsons were also members of the group through the years. The Byrds were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991.
    1968 – In the My Lai massacre, between 347 and 500 Vietnamese villagers (men, women, and children) were killed by American troops.
    1968 – General Motors produced its 100 millionth vehicle, an Oldsmobile Tornado.
    1968 - Top Hits
“Love is Blue” - Paul Mauriat
(Theme From) “Valley of the Dolls” - Dionne Warwick
“(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay” - Otis Redding
“Take Me to Your World” - Tammy Wynette
    1969 - “The Love Bug” released by Walt Disney studio. Directed by Robert Stevenson, the film starred "Herbie," a loveable Volkswagen bug with a personality. Abused by the evil racecar driver "Thorndyke" (David Thomlinson), Herbie is rescued by the young good-guy racecar driver "Jim" (Dean Jones). Grateful for his rescue, Herbie rewards the hapless Jim by winning one race after another on his driver’s behalf. The excitement begins when the ruthless Thorndyke plots to get Herbie back by any means necessary. Based on a story by Gordon Buford, “The Love Bug” inspired two sequels, “Herbie Rides Again” and “Herbie Goes To Monte Carlo.”
    1970 - An extremely popular cover of "LIFE" magazine was issued, showing the current fashion battle over long versus miniskirts.
    1971 - At the 13th Annual Grammy Awards, Simon and Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water" wins Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists, Best Engineered Record and Best Contemporary Song.
    1971 - The Allman Brothers Band records its breakthrough album, "Live at the Fillmore East."
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    1972 - "The Merv Griffin Show", starring game show and late-night television host, Merv Griffin (1925-2007), started its syndicated debut for Metromedia Television. Joining Merv were Arthur Treacher, and Mort Lindsey and his orchestra. In the 1940s, Griffin had a number one song with the Freddy Martin Orchestra, "I’ve Got a Lovely Bunch of Cocoanuts," which launched him to fame. He had his own radio show at KFRC in San Francisco in the late 1940’s, branching into early local television. Griffin battled Johnny Carson on CBS-TV late night, and lost. He also fought ABC-TV's Joey Bishop, and again lost. He did win in the Metro media show; and with ownership of stations such as WPIX-TV 11 in New York, WPOP Radio in Hartford, Connecticut. Later, he came up with "Wheel of Fortune" and the formula for "Jeopardy," which he also owned, making him one of the world's richest entertainment moguls and for which he still receives credit. Griffin also owned several hotels in Atlantic City, New Jersey and Beverly Hills.
    1972 - Author Clifford Irving pleads guilty to a charge that the "autobiography" of Howard Hughes on which he supposedly collaborated was a hoax.
    1974 - The Arab Oil Embargo was lifted. It would take several weeks before long gasoline lines disappeared here. The oil-producing Arab countries agreed to lift their five-month embargo on petroleum sales to the US. During the embargo prices went up 330 percent and a ban was imposed on Sunday gasoline sales. Long lines at filling stations became the norm, as did the 55 mph speed limit nationwide.  Rationing took the form of even-odd alternate days purchasing capability based on the final digit of one’s license plate.  The embargo was in retaliation for US support of Israel during the October, 1973 Middle-East War.
    1975 - A single storm brought 119 inches of snow to Crater Lake, Oregon, establishing a state record.
    1976 - Top Hits
December 1963 (“Oh, What a Night”) - The Four Seasons
“All by Myself” - Eric Carmen
“Take It to the Limit” - Eagles
“The Roots of My Raising” - Merle Haggard
    1976 - The Four Seasons, featuring Frankie Valli, returned to the pop charts after an absence of 10 years. The group's "December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night)," became the top song in the United States. Valli’s real name is Castelluccio and with him were Bob Gaudio, Nick Massi and Tommy DeVito. Joe Long and Charlie Callelo were members in the 1960s, when Gaudio focused on producing for the group and DeVito left. The original producer was Bob Crewe. The name, The Four Seasons, was taken from a bowling alley in New Jersey. The group charted a total of 30 songs, plus Valli had nine solo hits. In 1990, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Their music has been captured by “Jersey Boys,” first as a smash Broadway play and the feature film of the same name, released in 2014.
    1976 - Johnny Taylor's "Disco Lady" begins a six week stay at the top of the Billboard R&B chart. It is the first number one song to contain the word "disco" in the title.
    1980 - Pink Floyd's "The Wall" goes platinum a few weeks into its 15 week stay at Number One. The two-record set is largely the brainchild of bass player Roger Waters, who now emerges as the group's creative head.
    1983 - Radio talk show host Larry King brought his topical interview program to syndicated TV. Using a telephone hook-up, viewers called in to speak to particular guests. King appeared on CNN on “Larry King Live” from 1985-2010, interviewing a variety of newsmakers and celebrities.
    1983 - Randy Smith’s NBA consecutive-game streak came to an end as he played in his 906th straight game. Smith played for Buffalo, San Diego, Cleveland, New York, and San Diego (again.)
    1984 – Beirut CIA station chief William Buckley was kidnapped by Islamic fundamentalists Hezbollah and later died in captivity.  The upcoming trial of 17 Iranian-backed militants was about to begin in Kuwait.  William Casey, who was by then the Director of Central Intelligence, asked for help in securing Buckley's release.  Three weeks after Buckley's abduction, President Ronald Reagan signed National Security Decision Directive 138 which outlined plans on how to get the American hostages released from Iran and to "neutralize" alleged "terrorist threats" from countries such as Nicaragua.  This was the beginning of the Iran-Contra affair, which culminated in the exchange of missiles for the release of hostages. 
    1984 - Top Hits
“Jump” - Van Halen
“Girls Just Want to Have Fun” - Cyndi Lauper
“Somebody’s Watching Me” - Rockwell
“Going, Going, Gone” - Lee Greenwood
    1985 – AP newsman Terry Anderson was taken hostage by Shiite Hezbollah militants in Beirut. He was released on December 4, 1991.
    1985 - National Football League owners met in Phoenix, AZ and tabled a proposal that would have allowed transmitters and receivers in football helmets. The idea was to allow coaches to talk with quarterbacks in noisy stadiums. The idea did become a reality, but a minor one. Players complained of too much interference and static.
    1985 – Denny McLain, winner of the AL Cy Young Award in 1968 after winning 31 games, was convicted of racketeering, extortion, and cocaine possession in Tampa. McLain served 29 months of a 23-year sentence before an appeals court overturned the decision.
    1986 - Susan Butcher wins the Iditarod dogsled race from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska, in the record time of 11 days, 15 hours, almost seven days faster than the time in 1985 when Libby Riddles was the first woman to win the race. Butcher again wins the race in 1987 in what is called a new era in the dogsled competition
    1988 – In the Iran-Contra Affair, Lt Colonel Oliver North and Vice Admiral John Poindexter were indicted on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States.
    1989 - The Rolling Stones signed a $70 million contract to play 50 North American dates. At that point, it was the largest contract in Rock history.
    1989 - A winter storm brought heavy snow and high winds to the southwestern U.S. Winds gusted to 60 mph at Lovelock, NV, Salt Lake City, UT, and Fort Carson, CO. Snow fell at a rate of three inches per hour in the Lake Tahoe area of Nevada.
    1990 - Thunderstorms developing ahead of a cold front produced large hail and damaging winds from northwest Florida to western South Carolina. Thunderstorm winds gusted to 75 mph at Floridatown, FL. Sixteen cities across the northeastern quarter of the nation reported record high temperatures for the date. The afternoon high of 78 degrees at Burlington, VT smashed their previous record for the date by 23 degrees. New York City reported a record high of 82 degrees.
    1993 - "Informer" by Toronto rapper Snow reached number-one on the Billboard Hot 100. It would remain in the top spot for seven weeks, making it one of the most successful Canadian songs ever on the US chart. Snow's debut album, "12 Inches of Snow," also was a million-seller.
    1994 - Prodigy put a newspaper, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution online. The Journal-Constitution listed local information, including Little League scores, lunch menus, and crime reports, as well as local advertising. The news service was available as a subscription service, with additional fees for bulletin board usage. Other early online newspapers included the St. Louis Dispatch and Florida Today.
    1995 – Mississippi, the home state of Jefferson Davis, officially ratified the Thirteenth Amendment, becoming the last state to approve the abolition of slavery. The Thirteenth Amendment was officially ratified in 1865.
    1998 - Candice Bergen and the cast of “Murphy Brown” filmed the 245th and final episode of the award-winning and sometimes controversial CBS sitcom. The hour-long finale featured appearances by Julia Roberts, Bette Midler, and George Clooney, as well as Bergen's real mother, Frances.
    1999 - The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) gave out its first set of Diamond Awards for sales over 10 million units in the US. Sixty-one albums and one single qualified. At the top of the list was “The Eagles' Greatest Hits,” with over 25 million copies (it would sell another million by the end of the year).
    2003 - Over 5,000 coordinated candlelight vigils take place, in more than 125 countries, in a last-ditch protest against a U.S. invasion of Iraq.
    2009 - The Weinstein Co. acquired the rights to produce “Nowhere Boy,” the story of John Lennon's tumultuous childhood. The script focuses on the battle between Lennon's aunt Mimi and his mother Julia for custody and the affections of the young musician as well as his friendship with Paul McCartney. The film was released at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival on January 27th, 2010.
    2014 - As part of its effort to protect America from an attack by North Korea, the U.S. invested $1 billion in ground-based missile interceptors on the West Coast.
    2015 - Apple began a web TV service in September, carrying broadcast networks such as CBS, Fox and ABC. Apple TV offers 25 channels for less than current cable television packages



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