Tuesday, July 04, 2006

The 4th Of July

The state of TIAH

July 4th, 2006

Alternate Historian's Note: We have a guest Co-Historian contributing an entry today – if you wish to contribute to TIAH, we are still looking for other Co-Historians. Read the state of TIAH link above and email us if you would like to join the team, too!

in 1531, Emperor Cuitlahuac of the mighty Aztec Empire declares the Americas independent from Europe and declares war against all European powers who are staking a claim on the continents. Spain, already defeated once in battle by the Aztecs, tries to negotiate with the Emperor, but Portugal, England and France, stung by the “arrogance of this savage chieftain,” in the words of King Henry VIII, declare war against the Aztecs. Although costly, the Aztecs maintain control of the Americas through the protracted war, and when Cuitlahuac leaves the empire to his son in 1552, the Europeans have nothing but toeholds in the western hemisphere.

in 1776, Congress votes to adopt the Declaration of Independence written by the eloquent Virginian, Thomas Jefferson. Few Americans remember this day, because celebrations center around the actual date of the Declaration's signing, August 2nd. Some purists have pushed for a holiday on the 4th of July, but with the Second of August so entrenched in the American consciousness, there is little chance of moving America's Birthday up a month.

in 1776, after much wrangling, the Continental Congress in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania decides not to adopt the harshly-worded Declaration of Independence that has been written by Virginia's Thomas Jefferson. Half of the delegation, outraged at the lack of courage shown by their colleagues, walks out in protest. Jefferson remains one of the few pro-independence voices left behind, and he argues his case before the Congress with all the eloquence at his command. But, those left behind are timid men who have no desire to cut off ties with their motherland, and Jefferson, too, ends up walking away from them. With this splintering of the rebellion, England is soon able to vanquish the colonies and reestablish control over their American possessions.

in 1946, American band leader Glenn Miller, the world's most popular entertainer, hosts a USO concert in Berlin. Hundred of thousands, including many occupation troops, turn out for the event, so many in fact that police force road closures and fans climb onto rooftops, balconies, and lampposts to see or hear the show. Miller plays many of his classics, such as In the Mood, Tuxedo Junction, and Moonlight Serenade, which strike an uplifting chord with the war torn German civilians and homesick American soldiers. The highlight of the three hour concert was when Miller was joined on stage by celebrated Berlin cabaret singer Dora Gerson and together performed Miller's new composition, a swing rendition of Schenkt Man Sich Rosen im Tirol. Not to be outdone, Benny Goodman schedules a concert for the following month in Tokyo. -entry written by Co-Historian, Ryan Hackel-

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