8 October 1982

The musical ‘Cats’ opens on Broadway and runs for nearly 18 years before it closes on September 10 2000.

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Randy Rum Tum Tugger will have given his pelvis a last few thrusts at a tourist, the giant boot will have flopped into the alleyway one last time, Mungojerrie and Rumpleteazer will have executed their last calisthenic tumbles, Macavity won’t have been there for a final caper, Old Deuteronomy will have chatted with his last youngster, and Grizabella will have warbled her last “Memory.” The invited guests will file out off to a celebratory party most of them. There’ll be speeches, glasses raised, fireworks across the water, and then there’ll be silence.

What else can there be after a Broadway show runs nearly 18 years, more than three years longer than the nearest competitor? What’s left after 7,485 performances, seven Tonys, and the distinction of having been seen by more than 10 million people? Even critics who hate the show, even pundits who’ve watched the production’s original style and vision become dated in comparison to two decades’ worth of new musical frontiers, even producers who’ve prayed for flashy mega-musicals to ease their stranglehold on big theatres so a new stream of productions can have a place to play, even audiences who come out of the Winter Garden Theatre thinking, “so that was it?” all are no doubt feeling a little sad today, a little in awe, a little crestfallen that a chapter of Broadway lore has been sealed and tucked away:

Cats is closing. It really is closing. And Broadway will never be the same. In mid-February, the producers of Cats told the world the musical would close June 25, after 7,397 performances at the Winter Garden Theatre. An outpouring of media coverage, fan sentiment and heightened ticket sales ensued. Since the announcement, in fact, grosses have regularly leapt past the $500,000 per week mark, with the week ending Aug. 27 a case in point. Cats was therefore given an extra eleven weeks to live, with the Sept. 9 evening show the last available to the general public, and the Sept. 10, 6 PM, invitation-only show the last ever.

7 October 1950

Mother Teresa sets up the Missionaries of Charity.

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Missionaries of Charity is a Roman Catholic Latin Rite religious congregation established in 1950 by Mother Teresa. It consists of over 4,501 religious sisters and is active in 133 countries. Members of the order designate their affiliation using the order’s initials, “M.C.” A member of the Congregation must adhere to the vows of chastity, poverty, obedience, and the fourth vow, to give “wholehearted free service to the poorest of the poor.”

Today, the order consists of both Contemplative and Active Branches of Brothers and Sisters over several different countries. In 1963, both the Contemplative branch of the Sisters and the Active branch of the Brothers were founded, Brothers being co-founded by then Australian Jesuit (who became Brother Andrew, M.C.) Fr Ian Travers-Ball S.J. In 1979 the Contemplative branch of the Brothers was added and in 1984 a priest branch, the Missionaries of Charity Fathers, was founded by Mother Teresa with Fr. Joseph Langford, combining the vocation of the Missionaries of Charity with the Ministerial Priesthood. As with the Sisters, the Fathers live a very simple lifestyle without television, radios or items of convenience. They neither smoke nor drink alcohol and beg for their food. They make a visit to their families every five years but do not take annual holidays. Lay Catholics and non-Catholics constitute the Co-Workers of Mother Teresa, the Sick and Suffering Co-Workers, and the Lay Missionaries of Charity.

6 October 1903

The High Court of Australia sits for the first time.

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The High Court of Australia is the supreme court in the Australian court hierarchy and the final court of appeal in Australia. It has both original and appellate jurisdiction, the power of judicial review over laws passed by the Parliament of Australia and the parliaments of the States, and the ability to interpret the Constitution of Australia thereby powerfully shaping the development of federalism in Australia.

The High Court is mandated by Constitution section 71, which vests in it the judicial power of the Commonwealth of Australia. The Court was constituted by, and its first members were appointed under, the Judiciary Act 1903. It now operates under Constitution sections 71 to 75, the Judiciary Act, and the High Court of Australia Act 1979. It is composed of seven Justices: the Chief Justice of Australia, currently Susan Kiefel, and six other Justices. They are appointed by the Governor-General of Australia, on the advice of the federal government, and under the constitution must retire at age 70.

Since 1979, The High Court has been located in Canberra, Australian Capital Territory. The majority of its sittings are held in the High Court building, situated in the Parliamentary Triangle, overlooking Lake Burley Griffin. With an increasing utilisation of video links, sittings are also commonly held in the state capitals.

5 October 1962

The first James Bond movie, Dr. No, is released.

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Dr. No is a 1962 British spy film, starring Sean Connery, with Ursula Andress and Joseph Wiseman, filmed in Jamaica and England. It is the first James Bond film. Based on the 1958 novel of the same name by Ian Fleming, it was adapted by Richard Maibaum, Johanna Harwood, and Berkely Mather and was directed by Terence Young. The film was produced by Harry Saltzman and Albert R. Broccoli, a partnership that would continue until 1975.

In the film, James Bond is sent to Jamaica to investigate the disappearance of a fellow British agent. The trail leads him to the underground base of Dr. No, who is plotting to disrupt an early American space launch with a radio beam weapon. Although the first of the Bond books to be made into a film, Dr. No was not the first of Fleming’s novels, Casino Royale being the debut for the character; the film makes a few references to threads from earlier books. This film also introduced the criminal organisation SPECTRE, which would also appear in six subsequent films.

Produced on a low budget, Dr. No was a financial success. While critical reaction was mixed upon release, over time the film has gained a reputation as one of the series’ best instalments. The film was the first of a successful series of 24 Bond films. Dr. No also launched a genre of “secret agent” films that flourished in the 1960s. The film also spawned a spin-off comic book and soundtrack album as part of its promotion and marketing.

4 October 1927

Gutzon Borglum begins the sculpting work on Mount Rushmore.

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On this day in 1927, sculpting begins on the face of Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills National Forest of South Dakota. It would take another 12 years for the impressive granite images of four of America’s most revered and beloved presidents—George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt–to be completed.

The monument was the brainchild of a South Dakota historian named Doane Robinson, who was looking for a way to attract more tourists to his state. He hired a sculptor named Gutzon Borglum to carve the faces into the mountain. According to the National Park Service, the first face to be chiseled was George Washington’s; Borglum first sculpted the head as an egg shape, his features added later. Thomas Jefferson’s image was originally fashioned in the space to the right of Washington, but, within two years, the face was badly cracked. Workers had to blast the sculpture off the mountain using dynamite. Borglum then started over with Jefferson situated on the left side of Washington.

Washington’s face was the first to be completed in 1934. Jefferson’s was dedicated in 1936–with then-president Franklin Roosevelt in attendance–and Lincoln’s was completed a year later. In 1939, Teddy Roosevelt’s face was completed. The project, which cost $1 million, was funded primarily by the federal government.

Borglum continued to touch up his work at Mount Rushmore until he died suddenly in 1941. Borglum had originally hoped to also carve a series of inscriptions into the mountain, outlining the history of the United States.

3 October 1932

Iraq gets its independence from the United Kingdom.

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With the admission of Iraq into the League of Nations, Britain terminates its mandate over the Arab nation, making Iraq independent after 17 years of British rule and centuries of Ottoman rule.

Britain seized Iraq from Ottoman Turkey during World War I and was granted a mandate by the League of Nations to govern the nation in 1920. A Hashemite monarchy was organized under British protection in 1921, and on October 3, 1932, the kingdom of Iraq was granted independence. The Iraqi government maintained close economic and military ties with Britain, leading to several anti-British revolts.

A pro-Axis revolt in 1941 led to a British military intervention, and the Iraqi government agreed to support the Allied war effort. In 1958, the monarchy was overthrown, and for the next two decades Iraq was ruled by a series of military and civilian governments. In 1979, General Saddam Hussein became Iraqi dictator; he held onto power with an iron fist, until disappearing in the face of an American-led coaliation’s invasion of Iraq in 2003.

2 October 2002

The Beltway sniper attacks start.

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D.C. sniper attacks of 2002, shooting spree in the Washington, D.C., area that killed 10 people and injured 3 over a three-week period in October 2002. The shooters, John Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo, chose targets seemingly at random and brought daily life in the area to a virtual standstill.

The attacks began on October 2, 2002, when a bullet shattered the window of a craft store in Aspen Hill, Maryland, narrowly missing a cashier. Less than an hour after that incident, a 55-year-old man was shot and killed while walking across a parking lot in Wheaton, Maryland. Although the shootings were not initially recognized as being connected, law-enforcement authorities soon realized that those two acts of violence were just the first of what would be more than a dozen linked shootings over the next 23 days.

By the end of the day on October 3, five more victims had been shot and killed in the Washington metropolitan area. Investigators determined that bullets from several of the first seven shootings were fired from the same weapon—a high-powered .223-calibre rifle. On the morning of October 7, a 13-year-old boy was shot and injured in front of his middle school in Bowie, Maryland. Muhammad and Malvo left a tarot card with a note to law enforcement written on it, but it contained no specific demands. More than 30 different law-enforcement agencies at the local, state, and federal levels would ultimately work together to track, identify, and capture the parties responsible for the attacks.

Other than conflicting reports of a white van, a white box truck, and a dark Chevrolet Caprice near the scenes of the incidents, police had no clear leads. Criminal profilers predicted that the sniper was most likely a white male, but that assumption was based largely on the characteristics of past serial killers and not the sniper case itself. From October 9 to October 14, two men and a woman were killed in separate incidents in northern Virginia.

On October 19 a 13th shooting occurred at a restaurant in Ashland, Virginia. Law-enforcement officials found a second note at the crime scene, demanding money and instructing the police to call at a certain time and place. The phone number provided in the note was not valid, but technicians at the U.S. Secret Service crime lab were able to match the handwriting to the tarot card left at the scene of an earlier shooting.

1 October 1992

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The Cartoon Network is launched.

Cartoon Network is an American basic cable and satellite television channel that is owned by The Cartoon Network, Inc., a subsidiary of Turner Broadcasting System, itself being a subsidiary of Time Warner. It was founded by Betty Cohen and launched on October 1, 1992.

The channel primarily broadcasts children’s shows, mostly animated programming, ranging from action to animated comedy. It is primarily aimed at children and young teenagers between the ages of 7 to 15, and targets older teens and adults with mature content during its late night daypart Adult Swim, which is treated as a separate entity for promotional purposes and as a separate channel by Nielsen for ratings purposes. It operates daily from 6:00 AM to 8:00 PM. A Spanish language audio track for select programs is accessible via second audio programing; some cable and satellite companies offer the Spanish feed as a separate channel by removing the main English-language audio track. It is also the related channel of Turner-owned Boomerang.As of January 2016, Cartoon Network is available to approximately 94.0 million pay television households in the United States.

On October 1, 1992, Cartoon Network played “The Star Spangled Banner” and a video of a person placing a dynamite in a field and then blowing the dynamite up, the channel’s launch then occurred on that day and was hosted by the MGM cartoon character Droopy in a special event called Droopy’s Guide to the Cartoon Network, during which the first cartoon on the network, The Great Piggy Bank Robbery, was shown.

Initial programming on the channel consisted exclusively of reruns of classic Warner Bros. cartoons, the 1933–1957 Popeye cartoons, MGM cartoons, and Hanna-Barbera cartoons. At first, cable providers in New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., and Detroit carried the channel. By the time the network launched, Cartoon Network had an 8,500-hour cartoon library.From its launch until 1995, the network’s announcers said the network’s name with the word “The” added before “Cartoon Network”, thus calling the network “The Cartoon Network”. By the time that the network debuted, Cartoon Network also operated a programming block that aired on TNT, entitled “Cartoon Network on TNT”.

30 September 1949

The Berlin Airlift come to an end.

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After 15 months and more than 250,000 flights, the Berlin Airlift officially comes to an end. The airlift was one of the greatest logistical feats in modern history and was one of the crucial events of the early Cold War.

In June 1948, the Soviet Union suddenly blocked all ground traffic into West Berlin, which was located entirely within the Russian zone of occupation in Germany. It was an obvious effort to force the United States, Great Britain, and France to accept Soviet demands concerning the postwar fate of Germany. As a result of the Soviet blockade, the people of West Berlin were left without food, clothing, or medical supplies. Some U.S. officials pushed for an aggressive response to the Soviet provocation, but cooler heads prevailed and a plan for an airlift of supplies to West Berlin was developed. It was a daunting task: supplying the daily wants and needs of so many civilians would require tons of food and other goods each and every day.

On June 26, 1948, the Berlin Airlift began with U.S. pilots and planes carrying the lion’s share of the burden. During the next 15 months, 277,264 aircraft landed in West Berlin bringing over 2 million tons of supplies. On September 30, 1949, the last plane–an American C-54–landed in Berlin and unloaded over two tons of coal. Even though the Soviet blockade officially ended in May 1949, it took several more months for the West Berlin economy to recover and the necessary stockpiles of food, medicine, and fuel to be replenished.

The Berlin Airlift was a tremendous Cold War victory for the United States. Without firing a shot, the Americans foiled the Soviet plan to hold West Berlin hostage, while simultaneously demonstrating to the world the “Yankee ingenuity” for which their nation was famous. For the Soviets, the Berlin crisis was an unmitigated disaster. The United States, France, and Great Britain merely hardened their resolve on issues related to Germany, and the world came to see the Russians as international bullies, trying to starve innocent citizens.

29 September 1911

Italy declares war on the Ottoman Empire.

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The Ottoman Empire, long considered the “Sick Man of Europe,” was the ostensible ruler of the Muslim and Arab-speaking North African provinces of Tripolitania and Cyrenacia (now both known as Libya). Neighboring Egypt was also technically an Ottoman possession, but had been occupied and controlled by the British for decades. The Ottomans thus had no land connection to their Libyan provinces.

Italy, united into one nation only in the 1860s, was late in joining the other nations of Europe in conquering and occupying African land to turn into colonies for the purposes of profit, glory and power. After losing out on a claim to the North African region of Tunisia, Italy turned to Tripolitania and Cyrenacia for imperial expansion.

After securing the complicity or neutrality of the other “Great Powers” of Europe, Italy presented the Ottoman government with an ultimatum on September 28, 1911 demanding that Italy be allowed to occupy Tripolitania and Cyrenacia under the pretext of protecting Italian citizens living there from the alleged threats of Muslim extremists. The Ottomans rebuffed the Italians, but indicated that they were open to negotiations. Obviously anticipating a rejection of their demands, Italy declared war on September 29, 1911.