1804 John Deere was born.
1812 Charles Dickens was born.
1882 John L - Sullivan won the last bare knuckle heavyweight boxing championship.
1885 Sinclair Lewis was born.
1906 China’s last emperor was born.
1973 The U. S. Senate voted to form an investigative committee to look into the Watergate break-in. (See January 4th and June 17th entries.)
Back in 1882, the Boston Strong Boy, John L. Sullivan, won the heavyweight championship of the world in Mississippi City, Mississippi. On this date, Sullivan knocked out Paddy Ryan in the ninth round with his bare knuckled fists. After this fight, boxers had to wear gloves.
Today is a double birthday celebration. Two honored writers who were both adept at creating characters that personified attitudes of their times were born on this day. One was Charles Dickens, who chronicled the social conditions of Victorian England; the other was Sinclair Lewis, who permed a graphic portrait of 1920s and 1930s America. They created immortal characters like Fagan, Scrooge, Babbit, and Elmer Gantry. Dickens and Lewis had one particular quality in common; when they saw injustice, they tried to do something about it.
Some men make their name by being the first to do something. Others make their name by doing what they do best. Today is the birthday of a man who was one of the latter. In 1804, John Deere was born in Rutland, Vermont. He and his partner, Major Leonard Andrews, weren’t the first men to successfully develop and manufacture a steel plow, but they did produce a better farm tool than their competitors. When Deere went out on his own, he continued making farm implements with that same philosophy in mind.
China’s last Son of Heaven was born on this day in 1906. When he was two years old, P’u-i [pronounced poo-yee] was taken to Beijing’s Forbidden City and was crowned emperor. A regency government ruled in his place as the young monarch grew up in the palace—isolated from his family and his empire. Four years later, his regents abdicated his throne to the Republican Revolution; he didn’t know he had lost a 2000-year-old
Empire. When P’u-i was eighteen, he wanted to move to England or America and the new government wanted him out of the palace. But only the Japanese offered him assistance. He repaid them for their help by becoming Emperor K’ang-tee of the puppet Japanese nation Manchukuo—his ancestral home of Manchuria. After the Second World War, he was captured and returned to China where he was re-educated as a citizen of the People’s Republic of China.