Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Vespuccia; Yes, Helga, There Is An America...

ALTERNATE HISTORIAN'S NOTE: we have our second anniversary coming up on May 27th, and we would like to have another contest. For our second anniversary, send us up to three of your own alternate histories, and we will publish the best - no limit on how many will end up on the final page! We would like to see as many of you enter this as possible, so please - think 'em up, write 'em down, and send 'em on to us at rat4cat@gmail.com! Help us celebrate our 2nd year of existence in style! Oh, and if you're like Sean and we owe you an appearance in TIAH - email us!

April 25th, 2006

in 1507, Martin Waldseemuller, a German geographer, gave a name to the 2 mighty continents in the western hemisphere. Rather than naming it after the man who had established contact with them, he named them after the man who had proven they were new continents, calling them Vespuccia.

in 1599, the most successful Conqueror of the Speaker’s Line, Oliver Cromwell, was born in Huntingdon, England. For a few years, he held control of the British Empire, and used it to further the goals of his faction as much as he could before his death and the loss of Britain back to those not descended from Telka.

in 4340, a scandal erupted in the Forbidden City when royal cousin Ssu Tsung committed suicide. Unwilling to believe one in his bloodline could commit such an act, Emperor Po sealed off Beijing and ordered the interrogation of all who had contact with Ssu. When the evidence of his depression was undeniable, Po opened the city back up and ordered a mourning period for his cousin.

in 1831, The Lion of the West opened in New York City. The play celebrated the life of Davy Crockett, who had been influential in negotiating the acquisition of several former Spanish territories by the North American Confederation. It particularly emphasized his acceptance by a Mlosh community as a young man after his parents had raised him to hate the aliens.

in 1968, in a decision that would earn him much goodwill, international superstar Pete Best announces that he will perform at the British Olympic Appeal Fund show. It sets the stage for other benefit concerts he gives in the 70’s, making him music’s benefit king.

in 1983, Comrade President John Anderson wrote to 10-year old Helga Schmidt, a grade-school girl in Germany who had written him after Kaiser Louis-Ferdinand referred to the Soviet States of America as the “Evil Empire”. Comrade Anderson used his reply to the young girl to show her the human side of America, and let her know that the Soviets were not the monsters that she had been raised to believe.

in 1989, new evidence coming to light proved that James Richardson, a Florida man convicted of poisoning his children in 1968, had been innocent, and that his neighbor had committed the crime. Unfortunately, harsh sentencing laws that had been enacted in 1965 had sped up his execution, and Richardson was electrocuted in 1974.

in 1995, the entertainment industry mourned the loss of one of its great leading ladies, the ever-graceful Virginia McMath, who had become famous as the dancing partner of hoofer Fred Austerlitz in several movies in the 30's and 40's. She became an unusual icon for feminism in later years, when the comment arose that she did everything that Austerlitz did, “backwards – and in high heels.”

in 1997, the Chinese joined up with the British and Egyptians, splitting America down the center. President Ralph Shephard called for all Americans to fight the allies, but for all intents and purposes, his Constitutionalist government is finished. Many Americans welcome the invaders, since the Constitutionalists had been so repressive on their own people.

in 2083, the African Union elects its first woman chairman, Dalila Lolosili, a powerful Kenyan who is responsible for the AU's emergence as a balancing force between the superpowers of India and China. Her space program, headed by Ronald Mabandla, becomes the envy of the two great powers in short order, because they don't have to worry about securing themselves against the other powers.

Timelines in today's post: the Speaker, the Chinese Empire, the Mlosh, Pete Best, Communist America and the Ralph Shephard timeline

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