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How To Use This Site

This blog was updated on a daily basis for about two years, with those daily entries ceasing on December 31, 2013. The blog is still active, however, and we hope that people stopping in, who find something lacking, will add to the daily entries.

The blog still receives new posts as well, but now it receives them on items of Wyoming history. That has always been a feature of the blog, but Wyoming's history is rich and there are many items that are not fully covered here, if covered at all. Over time, we hope to remedy that.

You can obtain an entire month's listings by hitting on the appropriate month below, or an individual day by hitting on that calendar date.

We hope you enjoy this site.

Monday, April 8, 2013

April 8

1832  John "Portugee" Phillips (Manual Felipe Cardoso) born in the Azores.

1889  William F. Cody donated three elk to the proposed National Zoological Park.  Attribution: Wyoming State Historical Society.

1890  An election for the county seat of Natrona County pitted Casper against Bessemer.  Bessemer received more votes, but had only 24 residents, so the commissioners ruled the vote fraudulent and chose Casper as the county seat.  Bessemer now no longer exists.

1890  The Episcopal Church in Douglas bought the Congregational church.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.
1892 On the afternoon of this day, Stock Detective and Invader informed the invasion party at the Tisdalde Ranch that "rustlers" were located at the the KC Ranch, and that the party included Nate Champion, a well known and somewhat controversial small stockman.  Stockmen Irvine and Wolcott urged an immediate march on the location, which perhaps was not surprising as Champion was a witness against stockmen enforcer Joe Elliot.  Canton, Ford, Campbell and Hesse, however urged the party to march on to Buffalo, which was regarded as the headquarters of the opposition (and which demonstrates how bold the stockmen's plan really was).  After drinking and arguing, a vote was taken and the party elected to march on the KC.  The Johnson County Invaders reached the KC Ranch in Johnson County, Wyoming, at midnight.. Since disembarking in Casper on April 6, they had ridden east and then north, cutting telegraph lines in the process.

In  modern highway miles, the trip is only about 70 miles.  Granted, in the context of the era that would be fairly long distance to cover by horse, so perhaps the amount of time that the invading party took to cover this distance is not too surprising.  A typical cavalry unit at the time covered about 30 miles in a day, although they could cover 60 or more, while severely stressing their mounts, if necessary.  Here, as the invading party was entering clearly hostile terrain, depleting their mounts unnecessary would have been unwise.

Having said that, the amount of time that this advance took was significant in that it showed the extraordinarily ill advised nature of the expedition.  It the party nearly two days to reach their first target and they had yet to deeply penetrate into Johnson County.  The presence of the party was already known, and counter insurgents, if you will, were already at work preventing the telegraph lines that the invaders had taken down from being repaired.  While their location had not yet been discovered, a better military mind would have regarded them as already in a poor tactical posture.  Worse yet for their endeavor, new articles had been published in Cheyenne, Denver and New York to the effect that an action was afoot.  Cheyenne's newspaper even correctly noted that their specially chartered train had gone through Douglas and Casper, and then discharged its passengers for a trip to Johnson County.

1892  Remains of soldiers buried at Ft. Steele relocated to Fort McPherson National Cemetery.

1899  Edward D. Crippa, Wyoming's Senator for the balance of Lester Hunt's term in office for 1954, born in Rock Springs.  Crippa did not run for reelection.

1903  President Theodore Roosevelt commences his 1903 visit of Wyoming, starting with sixteen days in Yellowstone National Park.  His total time in Wyoming for the trip would be nineteen days.  Much of that time was spent on horseback.

1913 The US Seventeenth Amendment was ratified, requiring direct election of senators. Almost an historical footnote for the most part today, this really effected a radical restructuring of the American Constitutional system which has gone remarkably un-commented upon since 1913. The original Constitutional system contemplated the seat of Senatorial power really being in State legislatures, not in a direct election, so to a certain extent the change, which was meant to convey power to the citizenry, really only did so in the context of national citizenship while as the same time power was effectively conveyed from the states to the national government.

1916:   The Punitive Expedition, Railroads, and the Presidential Election of 1916: The Casper Daily Press of April 8, 1916

Lots of big news in this evening edition.

Theodore Roosevelt announced that he was throwing his hat in the ring, rather late, for the 1916 Presidential election.  Sort of.  He would not really end up being a candidate, and in fact, he was wearing down physically at this time, having never recovered from earlier serious health bouts and injuries.

Locally, the Northwestern Railroad story was indeed big news.  And apparently Frederick Funston was talking about railroads in connection with the expedition in Mexico.


The Sunday State Leader for April 8, 1917: Join the Guard, but not the Navy?

The shape of a national Army was beginning to take place in the first days of the wary.  The US would conscript, although there was opposition to it, and the Army was going to be huge.

Americans were joining the National Guard, lining up, as they had in prior wars, to go with their state units rather than the Federal Army.  With conscription that would soon change, but here we see the evolution of the Army.  Joining state units had long been the wartime norm.  It still was, but that was going to change in short order, although conscription had been a feature of the Civil War as well.

Men (and of course now women as well) weren't joining the Navy in the same numbers.  But, as it'd turn out, the role of the U.S. Navy would not be as vast as some had thought.

And Ft. D. A. Russell was going to be busy. 
1922  United States Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals Justice James E. Barrett born in Lusk.  He was appointed to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in 1971.

1935 The Works Progress Administration was approved by Congress.

1943 President Franklin D. Roosevelt freezes wages and prices, prohibits workers from changing jobs unless the war effort would be aided thereby, and bars rate increases by common carriers and public utilities.
From last year:

1963  The Wyoming League of Women Voters held its seventh convention.

Today is Easter for 2012.

The date Easter falls on shifts significantly from year to year, and does not occur on a specific date of the calendar every year.  The United States Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command provides the following discussion regarding the date:
Easter is an annual festival observed throughout the Christian world. The date for Easter shifts every year within the Gregorian Calendar. The Gregorian Calendar is the standard international calendar for civil use. In addition, it regulates the ceremonial cycle of the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches. The current Gregorian ecclesiastical rules that determine the date of Easter trace back to 325 CE at the First Council of Nicaea convened by the Roman Emperor Constantine. At that time the Roman world used the Julian Calendar (put in place by Julius Caesar).
The Council decided to keep Easter on a Sunday, the same Sunday throughout the world. To fix incontrovertibly the date for Easter, and to make it determinable indefinitely in advance, the Council constructed special tables to compute the date. These tables were revised in the following few centuries resulting eventually in the tables constructed by the 6th century Abbot of Scythia, Dionysis Exiguus. Nonetheless, different means of calculations continued in use throughout the Christian world.
In 1582 Gregory XIII (Pope of the Roman Catholic Church) completed a reconstruction of the Julian calendar and produced new Easter tables. One major difference between the Julian and Gregorian Calendar is the "leap year rule". See our FAQ on Calendars for a description of the difference. Universal adoption of this Gregorian calendar occurred slowly. By the 1700's, though, most of western Europe had adopted the Gregorian Calendar. The Eastern Christian churches still determine the Easter dates using the older Julian Calendar method.
The usual statement, that Easter Day is the first Sunday after the full moon that occurs next after the vernal equinox, is not a precise statement of the actual ecclesiastical rules. The full moon involved is not the astronomical Full Moon but an ecclesiastical moon (determined from tables) that keeps, more or less, in step with the astronomical Moon.
The ecclesiastical rules are:
  • Easter falls on the first Sunday following the first ecclesiastical full moon that occurs on or after the day of the vernal equinox;
  • this particular ecclesiastical full moon is the 14th day of a tabular lunation (new moon); and
  • the vernal equinox is fixed as March 21.
resulting in that Easter can never occur before March 22 or later than April 25. The Gregorian dates for the ecclesiastical full moon come from the Gregorian tables. Therefore, the civil date of Easter depends upon which tables - Gregorian or pre-Gregorian - are used. The western (Roman Catholic and Protestant) Christian churches use the Gregorian tables; many eastern (Orthodox) Christian churches use the older tables based on the Julian Calendar.
In a congress held in 1923, the eastern churches adopted a modified Gregorian Calendar and decided to set the date of Easter according to the astronomical Full Moon for the meridian of Jerusalem. However, a variety of practices remain among the eastern churches.
There are three major differences between the ecclesiastical system and the astronomical system.
  • The times of the ecclesiastical full moons are not necessarily identical to the times of astronomical Full Moons. The ecclesiastical tables did not account for the full complexity of the lunar motion.
  • The vernal equinox has a precise astronomical definition determined by the actual apparent motion of the Sun as seen from the Earth. It is the precise time at which the apparent ecliptic longitude of the Sun is zero. (Yes, the Sun's ecliptic longitude, not its declination, is used for the astronomical definition.) This precise time shifts within the civil calendar very slightly from year to year. In the ecclesiastical system the vernal equinox does not shift; it is fixed at March 21 regardless of the actual motion of the Sun.
  • The date of Easter is a specific calendar date. Easter starts when that date starts for your local time zone. The vernal equinox occurs at a specific date and time all over the Earth at once.
Inevitably, then, the date of Easter occasionally differs from a date that depends on the astronomical Full Moon and vernal equinox. In some cases this difference may occur in some parts of the world and not in others because two dates separated by the International Date Line are always simultaneously in progress on the Earth.
For example, take the year 1962. In 1962, the astronomical Full Moon occurred on March 21, UT=7h 55m - about six hours after astronomical equinox. The ecclesiastical full moon (taken from the tables), however, occurred on March 20, before the fixed ecclesiastical equinox at March 21. In the astronomical case, the Full Moon followed its equinox; in the ecclesiastical case, it preceded its equinox. Following the rules, Easter, therefore, was not until the Sunday that followed the next ecclesiastical full moon (Wednesday, April 18) making Easter Sunday, April 22.
Similarly, in 1954 the first ecclesiastical full moon after March 21 fell on Saturday, April 17. Thus, Easter was Sunday, April 18. The astronomical equinox also occurred on March 21. The next astronomical Full Moon occurred on April 18 at UT=5h. So in some places in the world Easter was on the same Sunday as the astronomical Full Moon.
The following are dates of Easter from 1980 to 2024:
1980  April 6        1995  April 16         2010  April 4

1981  April 19       1996  April 7          2011  April 24

1982  April 11       1997  March 30         2012  April 8

1983  April 3        1998  April 12         2013  March 31

1984  April 22       1999  April 4          2014  April 20

1985  April 7        2000  April 23         2015  April 5

1986  March 30       2001  April 15         2016  March 27

1987  April 19       2002  March 31         2017  April 16

1988  April 3        2003  April 20         2018  April 1

1989  March 26       2004  April 11         2019  April 21

1990  April 15       2005  March 27         2020  April 12

1991  March 31       2006  April 16         2021  April 4

1992  April 19       2007  April 8          2022  April 17

1993  April 11       2008  March 23         2023  April 9

1994  April 3        2009  April 12         2024  March 31

2013  A major blizzard hits most of Wyoming.

Late day in Casper Wyoming, April 8, 2012.

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