A Brief History On October 10, 1580, after a three-day siege, an English army beheaded over 600 Papal soldiers and civilians in Ireland. Digging Deeper In the decades following the religious turmoil brought about by the Protestant Reformation, the various Christian groups of Europe battled each other in wars to either assert their religious independence or to forcibly convert their enemies. One of the most infamous examples of religious violence occurred in the British isles where King Henry VIII founded the Anglican Church primarily to divorce one wife so as to marry another.  Henry’s reign is remembered for his having…

A Brief History On October 9, 2013, American Horror Story: Coven debuted on FX with at least three characters based on real life infamous Americans! Digging Deeper First off, yes, most of the show’s plot and characters are the inventions of the show’s creative writers, but the story does have elements based in our country’s history.  This approach is actually consistent with previous incarnations of the show as the original series did, after all, include notorious bisected murder victim Elizabeth Short a.k.a. The Black Dahlia in a memorable episode. This series (yes, series, not season, because for some reason when…

A Brief History On October 9, 1911, an accidental bomb explosion in China lead to the ultimate fall of China’s last imperial dynasty. Digging Deeper By 1911, the Qing or Manchu dynasty had ruled over China for almost 300 years.  During that time period, China experienced numerous internationally embarrassing disasters from its defeat in the Opium Wars to the failed Boxer Rebellion.  1911 would see the proverbial straw that broke the imperial camel’s back. An incident known as the Wuchang Uprising broke out on this day in 1911 by accident.  A revolutionary leader named Sun Wu was accidentally injured by…

A Brief History On October 8, 1918, United States Corporal Alvin C. York killed 28 German soldiers and captured 132 in France’s Argonne Forest during World War I making York one of America’s most decorated soldiers of the war. Digging Deeper Alvin York was born in a log cabin in December 1887.  As a young Christian man, he hoped to avoid serving in World War I as a conscientious objector.  Nevertheless, the U.S. draft did not allow such exemptions at that time.  Early on in his service, York had a crisis of conscience between being a pacifist and a soldier…

A Brief History Due to the implementation of the Gregorian calendar, October 7th was skipped in Italy, Poland, Portugal, and Spain in 1582. Digging Deeper Our calendar has changed a number of times in history and with those changes came the skipping and in some cases outright elimination of certain days of the year.  October 7, 1582 was one such date that does not exist in several countries’ history.  The omission of this particular date came with one of history’s most significant updates to the calendar most widely used in the world today: the Gregorian calendar. Prior to 1582, people…

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