George John Vakaleris (J VAK) was born in 1957 of Greek parents. Since childhood, frequent trips to the Greek countryside and islands have greatly influenced his artistic style. His works are noted for incorporating luminescent colors into an underlying complexity which boldly compliments simplicity of subject matter. His artwork has been displayed and featured both internationally and throughout the United States. John graduated with honors from both the Columbus School of Art and Design and the University of Chicago. He presently resides in Arizona. Learn more on John's website.
Meet the artist himself when he opens his art exhibition, at Harmon Museum, on May 10th.
Today, in 1775, Paul Revere and William Dawes embark on their Midnight ride from Charlestown to Lexington to warn the patriots. Yes, there were two of them, no matter what Henry told you... In Lexington, they where joined by Samuel Prescott and continued to Concord before being captured by a British patrol. Two others would also later make historic rides; Israel Bissell and Sybil Ludington.
Exactly eight years later, in 1783, the Revolutionary War came to a close.
Certainly made your American History test a little easier. You only had to remember one month and day! April 18th!
On April 4th, 1968, Dr. Martian Luther King Jr was fatally shot while on his balcony at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, TN. King was in Memphis in support of African American city sanitation workers after unequal wages, poor treatment and finally the deaths of two workers caused a strike.
A clergyman and prominent leader in the Civil Rights Movement, Dr. King was a Nobel Peace Prize laureate (recipient), known for his use of nonviolence and civil disobedience.
Dr. King was nearly fatally stabbed in 1958 and had constant death threats made against him, including a bomb threat made against the plane he planned to fly to Memphis on.
On April 3rd he gave his last public address, later known as the "I've Been to the Mountaintop" address, part of which was as follows:
"Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn't matter with me now. Because I've been to the mountaintop. And I've looked over. And I've seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you... But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land! And so I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. My eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord!"
Where would we be without our cell phones?
On this day in 1973, the first mobile phone call was made by Martin Cooper, a Motorola engineer and executive He made the call to the Bell Labs headquarters in New Jersey, while being interviewed by the press on the streets of Manhattan. A competitor, Bell Labs (AT&T) had envisioned a mobile phone since the 40's so Cooper couldn't help but playfully rub the win in their faces.
The call was made on a prototype of the DynaTAC (dynamic adaptive total area coverage) 8000X. It weighed 2.4 lbs and had a battery life of 20 minutes (and took 10 hours to recharge). Ten years later, a version of the DynaTAC would become the first mobile phone to be sold commercially.
Cooper was a big player in the development of mobile phones and believed that each person should be assigned a number, not just a home or business. In 1967, he had already helped his company develop a handheld radio system for the Chicago PD. The Bell Company was advancing their technology as well but putting their efforts into the car phone, which was becoming common. Cooper thought this was too narrow a line of thinking. Motorola believed in Cooper and invested $100 million between 1973 and 1993 before any revenues were made.
source: guinnessworldrecords.com & edn.com
Various staff and volunteer writers.