Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Today -100: October 18, 1922: Of absent professors, burning blimps, beebs, and robins hood

Italian PM Luigi Facta is standing on the railroad station waiting for a train to take him to the king where he plans to hand in his resignation when he receives a mysterious phone call that causes him to change his mind. His minister of war has been talking to people and it is believed either that former prime minister Giovanni Giolitti has said he won’t take the job again or that the Fascists have refused to participate in a coalition government. 

Belgian historian Henri Pirenne has just discovered that he’s been a Princeton professor of history for the last 6 years. Princeton appointed him in the hopes that it would get Germany to release him from captivity, which it did not. But it never told him. Or paid him.

Another US Army airship, the C-2, the army’s largest blimp, catches on fire in San Antonio after experiencing an unexpected “strong puff” of wind on takeoff. The C-2 previously made the first transcontinental trip by an airship. Most of its crew injure themselves jumping to the ground, but no one’s killed this time. Once again, hydrogen and airships prove not to be a good combination.

The BBC is founded, sort of.  British Broadcasting Company Ltd. Financed by a royalty on BBC radios, but radioheads (wirelessheads?) built their own, so it will go bankrupt and the British government will use its assets to create the Beeb we know today. It will go on the air next month.

Robin Hood, starring Douglas Fairbanks, premieres. Too much “Earl of Huntingdon” and the Crusades, not enough “Robin Hood” and Sherwood Forest, if you ask me.

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