Saturday, October 31, 2020

October 31st in stamps Martin Luther posts his 95 Theses, Nevada statehood, Luís I of Portugal, Johannes Vermeer, Houdini

Here are some events that happened on October 31st. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1517 – Protestant Reformation: Martin Luther posts his 95 Theses on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg.

Martin Luther (10 November 1483 – 18 February 1546) was a German professor of theology, composer, priest, monk, and a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation.

Luther was ordained to the priesthood in 1507. He came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church; in particular, he disputed the view on indulgences. Luther proposed an academic discussion of the practice and efficacy of indulgences in his Ninety-five Theses of 1517. His refusal to renounce all of his writings at the demand of Pope Leo X in 1520 and the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V at the Diet of Worms in 1521 resulted in his excommunication by the pope and condemnation as an outlaw by the Holy Roman Emperor.

Luther taught that salvation and, consequently, eternal life are not earned by good deeds but are received only as the free gift of God's grace through the believer's faith in Jesus Christ as redeemer from sin. His theology challenged the authority and office of the Pope by teaching that the Bible is the only source of divinely revealed knowledge, and opposed sacerdotalism by considering all baptized Christians to be a holy priesthood. Those who identify with these, and all of Luther's wider teachings, are called Lutherans, though Luther insisted on Christian or Evangelical (German: evangelisch) as the only acceptable names for individuals who professed Christ.

His translation of the Bible into the German vernacular (instead of Latin) made it more accessible to the laity, an event that had a tremendous impact on both the church and German culture. It fostered the development of a standard version of the German language, added several principles to the art of translation, and influenced the writing of an English translation, the Tyndale Bible. His hymns influenced the development of singing in Protestant churches. His marriage to Katharina von Bora, a former nun, set a model for the practice of clerical marriage, allowing Protestant clergy to marry.

In two of his later works, Luther expressed antagonistic views towards Jews. His rhetoric was not directed at Jews alone, but also towards Roman Catholics, Anabaptists, and nontrinitarian Christians. Luther died in 1546 with Pope Leo X's excommunication still effective.


Stamps from several countries depicting Martin Luther

Czechoslovakia - 1983 Celebrities Anniversaries - Martin Luther


France 1983 Martin Luther FDC First Day Cover


Germany 1952 Martin Luther


Netherlands 1983 Martin Luther FDC First Day Cover


Postcard, Deutsches Reich, Martin Luther


1632 Born: Johannes Vermeer, Dutch painter (d. 1675)

Johannes Vermeer (October 1632 – December 1675) was a Dutch Baroque Period painter who specialized in domestic interior scenes of middle class life. He was a moderately successful provincial genre painter in his lifetime but evidently was not wealthy, leaving his wife and children in debt at his death, perhaps because he produced relatively few paintings.

Vermeer worked slowly and with great care, and frequently used very expensive pigments. He is particularly renowned for his masterly treatment and use of light in his work.

Vermeer painted mostly domestic interior scenes. "Almost all his paintings are apparently set in two smallish rooms in his house in Delft; they show the same furniture and decorations in various arrangements and they often portray the same people, mostly

He was recognized during his lifetime in Delft and The Hague, but his modest celebrity gave way to obscurity after his death. He was barely mentioned in Arnold Houbraken's major source book on 17th-century Dutch painting (Grand Theatre of Dutch Painters and Women Artists), and was thus omitted from subsequent surveys of Dutch art for nearly two centuries.  In the 19th century, Vermeer was rediscovered by Gustav Friedrich Waagen and Théophile Thoré-Bürger, who published an essay attributing 66 pictures to him, although only 34 paintings are universally attributed to him today. Since that time, Vermeer's reputation has grown, and he is now acknowledged as one of the greatest painters of the Dutch Golden Age. Like some major Dutch Golden Age artists such as Frans Hals and Rembrandt, Vermeer never went abroad. And like Rembrandt, he was an avid art collector and dealer.

In 2008, American entrepreneur and inventor Tim Jenison developed the theory that Vermeer had used a camera obscura along with a "comparator mirror", which is similar in concept to a camera lucida but much simpler and makes it easy to match color values. He later modified the theory to simply involve a concave mirror and a comparator mirror. He spent the next five years testing his theory by attempting to re-create The Music Lesson himself using these tools, a process captured in the 2013 documentary film Tim's Vermeer.

In December 1675, Vermeer died after a short illness. He was buried in the Protestant Old Church on 15 December 1675.

Stamps from France, Netherlands and Netherlands Antilles depicting Vermeer's works



France 1982 Painting “La Dentelliere” by Vermeer

Netherlands 1996 Johannes Vermeer Exhibition FDC

Netherlands 2014 Painting Vermeer Girl With a Pearl Earring Sheet

Netherlands Antilles 2008 Johannes Vermeer Painting Sheet


1838 Born: Luís I of Portugal (d. 1889)

Dom Luís I (31 October 1838 in Lisbon  – 19 October 1889 in Cascais), known as The Popular (Portuguese: O Popular) was a member of the ruling House of Braganza, and King of Portugal from 1861 to 1889. The second son of Queen Maria II and her consort, King Ferdinand, he acceded to the throne upon the death of his elder brother King Pedro V.

Luís was a cultured man who wrote vernacular poetry, but had no distinguishing gifts in the political field into which he was thrust by the deaths of his brothers Pedro V and Fernando in 1861. Luís's domestic reign was a tedious and ineffective series of transitional governments called Rotativism formed at various times by the Progressistas (Liberals) and the Regeneradores (Conservatives), the party generally favoured by King Luís, who secured their long term in office after 1881. Despite a flirtation with the Spanish succession prior to the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–71, Luís's reign was otherwise one of domestic stagnation as Portugal fell ever further behind the nations of western Europe in terms of public education, political stability, technological progress and economic prosperity. In colonial affairs, Delagoa Bay was confirmed as a Portuguese possession in 1875, whilst Belgian activities in the Congo (1880s) and a British Ultimatum in 1890 denied Portugal a land link between Portuguese Angola and Portuguese Mozambique at the peak of the Scramble for Africa.

Stamps from Portugal and Madeira depicting Luís I 

Portugal King Luis I 1866


Portugal luís I, 15 reis


Portugal Madeira King Luiz


Portugal-D. luís I, 5 reis



1864 – Nevada is admitted as the 36th U.S. state.

Nevada  is a state in the Western United States. It is bordered by Oregon to the northwest, Idaho to the northeast, California to the west, Arizona to the southeast, and Utah to the east. Nevada is the 7th most extensive, the 32nd most populous, but the 9th least densely populated of the U.S. states. Nearly three-quarters of Nevada's people live in Clark County, which contains the Las Vegas–Paradise metropolitan area, including three of the state's four largest incorporated cities. Nevada's capital is Carson City.

Nevada is officially known as the "Silver State" because of the importance of silver to its history and economy. It is also known as the "Battle Born State" because it achieved statehood during the Civil War (the words "Battle Born" also appear on the state flag); as the "Sagebrush State", for the native plant of the same name; and as the "Sage-hen State".

Nevada is largely desert and semi-arid, much of it within the Great Basin. Areas south of the Great Basin are within the Mojave Desert, while Lake Tahoe and the Sierra Nevada lie on the western edge. About 86% of the state's land is managed by various jurisdictions of the U.S. federal government, both civilian and military.

Before European contact — and still today, American Indians of the Paiute, Shoshone, and Washoe tribes inhabited the land that is now Nevada. The first Europeans to explore the region were Spanish. They called the region Nevada (snowy) because of the snow which covered the mountains in winter like to Sierra Nevada in Spain. The area formed part of the Viceroyalty of New Spain, and became part of Mexico when it gained independence in 1821. The United States annexed the area in 1848 after its victory in the Mexican–American War, and it was incorporated as part of Utah Territory in 1850. The discovery of silver at the Comstock Lode in 1859 led to a population boom that became an impetus to the creation of Nevada Territory out of western Utah Territory in 1861. Nevada became the 36th state on October 31, 1864, as the second of two states added to the Union during the Civil War (the first being West Virginia).

US stamps commemorating Nevada's statehood

Nevada Statehood US

5c Nevada Statehood FDC

2014 USA Nevada Statehood Forever Stamp


1926 Died: Harry Houdini, American magician and stuntman (b. 1874)

Harry Houdini (born Erik Weisz, later Ehrich Weiss or Harry Weiss; March 24, 1874 – October 31, 1926) was a Hungarian-born American illusionist and stunt performer, noted for his sensational escape acts. He first attracted notice in vaudeville in the United States and then as "Harry 'Handcuff' Houdini" on a tour of Europe, where he challenged police forces to keep him locked up. Soon he extended his repertoire to include chains, ropes slung from skyscrapers, straitjackets under water, and having to escape from and hold his breath inside a sealed milk can with water in it.

In 1904, thousands watched as he tried to escape from special handcuffs commissioned by London's Daily Mirror, keeping them in suspense for an hour. Another stunt saw him buried alive and only just able to claw himself to the surface, emerging in a state of near-breakdown. While many suspected that these escapes were faked, Houdini presented himself as the scourge of fake spiritualists. As President of the Society of American Magicians, he was keen to uphold professional standards and expose fraudulent artists. He was also quick to sue anyone who imitated his escape stunts.

Houdini made several movies but quit acting when it failed to bring in money. He was also a keen aviator and aimed to become the first man to fly a plane in Australia.

US stamp and FDC depicting Houdini

2002  37¢ - Harry Houdini - Magician


2002  37¢ - Harry Houdini - Magician FDC



Friday, October 30, 2020

October 30th in stamps John Adams, Antoine Bourdelle, George I, King of the Hellenes, Henry Dunant founded the Red Cross

Here are some events that happened on October 30th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1735 Born: John Adams, American lawyer and politician, 2nd President of the United States (d. 1826)

John Adams (October 30, 1735 – July 4, 1826) was an American statesman, attorney, diplomat, writer, and Founding Father who served as the second president of the United States from 1797 to 1801. Before his presidency he was a leader of the American Revolution that achieved independence from Great Britain, and also served as the first vice president of the United States. Adams was a dedicated diarist and regularly corresponded with many important figures in early American history including his wife and adviser, Abigail, and his letters and other papers are an important source of historical information about the era.

United States stamps depicting John Adams




1861 Born: Antoine Bourdelle, French sculptor and painter (d. 1929)

Antoine Bourdelle (30 October 1861 – 1 October 1929), born Émile Antoine Bordelles, was an influential and prolific French sculptor and teacher. He was a student of Auguste Rodin, a teacher of Giacometti and Henri Matisse, and an important figure in the Art Deco movement and the transition from the Beaux-Arts style to modern sculpture.

His studio became the Musée Bourdelle, an art museum dedicated to his work, located at 18, rue Antoine Bourdelle, in the 15th arrondissement of Paris, France.

French stamp and first day cover depicting Antoine Bourdelle or his works

France 1954 A. Bourdelle

FDC France Art Antoine Bourdelle 1968 Paris



1863 – Danish Prince Vilhelm arrives in Athens to assume his throne as George I, King of the Hellenes.

George I (24 December 1845 – 18 March 1913) was King of Greece from 30 March 1863 until his assassination in 1913.

Originally a Danish prince, he was born in Copenhagen, and seemed destined for a career in the Royal Danish Navy. He was only 17 years old when he was elected king by the Greek National Assembly, which had deposed the unpopular Otto. His nomination was both suggested and supported by the Great Powers: the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, the Second French Empire and the Russian Empire. He married Grand Duchess Olga Constantinovna of Russia in 1867, and became the first monarch of a new Greek dynasty. Two of his sisters, Alexandra and Dagmar, married into the British and Russian royal families. Edward VII of the United Kingdom and Alexander III of Russia were his brothers-in-law, and George V, Nicholas II, Christian X of Denmark and Haakon VII of Norway were his nephews.

George's reign of almost 50 years (the longest in modern Greek history) was characterized by territorial gains as Greece established its place in pre-World War I Europe. Britain ceded the Ionian Islands peacefully in 1864, while Thessaly was annexed from the Ottoman Empire after the Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878). Greece was not always successful in its territorial ambitions; it was defeated in the Greco-Turkish War (1897). During the First Balkan War, after Greek troops had captured much of Greek Macedonia, George was assassinated in Thessaloniki. Compared with his own long tenure, the reigns of his successors Constantine I, Alexander, and George II proved short and insecure.

Greece stamp depicting George I

Greece 1956 30 I George



1910 Died: Henry Dunant, Swiss activist, founded the Red Cross, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1828)

Henry Dunant (born Jean-Henri Dunant; 8 May 1828 – 30 October 1910), also known as Henri Dunant, was a Swiss humanitarian, businessman and social activist. He was the visionary, promoter and co-founder of the Red Cross.


During a business trip in 1859, Dunant was witness to the aftermath of the Battle of Solferino in modern-day Italy. He recorded his memories and experiences in the book A Memory of Solferino which inspired the creation of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in 1863. The 1864 Geneva Convention was based on Dunant's idea for an independent organisation to care for wounded soldiers.

Dunant was the founder of the Swiss branch of the Young Men's Christian Association YMCA.

In 1901 he received the first Nobel Peace Prize together with Frédéric Passy, making Dunant the first Swiss Nobel laureate.

Stamps from various countries issued to commemorate Dunant  and the Red Cross

Henri Dunant, Red Cross Founder France FDC


Henri Dunant, Red Cross Founder France


Henri Dunant, Red Cross Founder Germany


Henri Dunant, Red Cross Founder Saar


Henri Dunant, Red Cross Founder West Germany

Thursday, October 29, 2020

October 29th in stamps International Red Cross, Joseph Pulitzer, Gustaf V of Sweden,

Here are some events that happened on October 29th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1863 – Eighteen countries meet in Geneva and agree to form the International Red Cross.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is a humanitarian institution based in Geneva, Switzerland, and a three-time Nobel Prize Laureate. State parties (signatories) to the Geneva Convention of 1949 and its Additional Protocols of 1977 (Protocol I, Protocol II) and 2005 have given the ICRC a mandate to protect victims of international and internal armed conflicts. Such victims include war wounded, prisoners, refugees, civilians, and other non-combatants.

The ICRC is part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement along with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and 192 National Societies. It is the oldest and most honoured organization within the movement and one of the most widely recognized organizations in the world, having won three Nobel Peace Prizes in 1917, 1944, and 1963.

Up until the middle of the 19th century, there were no organized and well-established army nursing systems for casualties and no safe and protected institutions to accommodate and treat those who were wounded on the battlefield. In June 1859, the Swiss businessman Henry Dunant travelled to Italy to meet French emperor Napoléon III with the intention of discussing difficulties in conducting business in Algeria, at that time occupied by France. When he arrived in the small Italian town of Solferino on the evening of 24 June, he witnessed the aftermath of the Battle of Solferino, an engagement in the Second Italian War of Independence. In a single day, about 40,000 soldiers on both sides died or were left wounded on the field. Henry Dunant was shocked by the terrible aftermath of the battle, the suffering of the wounded soldiers, and the near-total lack of medical attendance and basic care. He completely abandoned the original intent of his trip and for several days he devoted himself to helping with the treatment and care for the wounded. He succeeded in organizing an overwhelming level of relief assistance by motivating the local population to aid without discrimination. Back in his home in Geneva, he decided to write a book entitled A Memory of Solferino which he published with his own money in 1862. He sent copies of the book to leading political and military figures throughout Europe. In addition to penning a vivid description of his experiences in Solferino in 1859, he explicitly advocated the formation of national voluntary relief organizations to help nurse wounded soldiers in the case of war. In addition, he called for the development of international treaties to guarantee the neutrality and protection of those wounded on the battlefield as well as medics and field hospitals.

Stamps from various countries issued to benefit the Red Cross

Belgium 1959 Red Cross set

Croatia 1943 - Red Cross


France Stamps 2019 MNH French Red Cross Medical Health Croix-Rouge


Red Cross 100th Anniversary Fdc Block Of 4 Fluegel Cachet

Saar 1951 Red Cross charity



1911 Died: Joseph Pulitzer, Hungarian-American publisher, lawyer, and politician, founded Pulitzer, Inc. (b. 1847)

Joseph Pulitzer (April 10, 1847 – October 29, 1911) was a newspaper publisher of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and the New York World. He became a leading national figure in the Democratic Party and was elected congressman from New York. He crusaded against big business and corruption, and helped keep the Statue of Liberty in New York.

In the 1890s the fierce competition between his World and William Randolph Hearst's New York Journal caused both to develop the techniques of yellow journalism, which won over readers with sensationalism, sex, crime and graphic horrors. The wide appeal reached a million copies a day and opened the way to mass-circulation newspapers that depended on advertising revenue (rather than cover price or political party subsidies) and appealed to readers with multiple forms of news, gossip, entertainment and advertising.

Today, his name is best known for the Pulitzer Prizes, which were established in 1917 as a result of his endowment to Columbia University. The prizes are given annually to recognize and reward excellence in American journalism, photography, literature, history, poetry, music and drama. Pulitzer founded the Columbia School of Journalism by his philanthropic bequest; it opened in 1912.


US stamp and First Day Cover issued to commemorate Joseph Pulitzer

Joseph Pulitzer FDC


Joseph Pulitzer


1950 Died: Gustaf V of Sweden (b. 1858)

Gustaf V (Oscar Gustaf Adolf; 16 June 1858 – 29 October 1950) was King of Sweden from 1907 until his death in 1950. He was the eldest son of King Oscar II of Sweden and Sophia of Nassau, a half-sister of Adolphe, Grand Duke of Luxembourg. Reigning from the death of his father, Oscar II, in 1907 to his own death 43 years later, he holds the record of being the oldest monarch of Sweden and the third-longest rule, after Magnus IV and Carl XVI Gustaf. He was also the last Swedish monarch to exercise his royal prerogatives, which largely died with him, although they were formally abolished only with the remaking of the Swedish constitution in 1974. He was the first Swedish king since the High Middle Ages not to have a coronation and so never wore the king's crown, a practice that has continued ever since.

Gustaf's early reign saw the rise of parliamentary rule in Sweden although the leadup to World War I induced his dismissal of Liberal Prime Minister Karl Staaff in 1914, replacing him with his own figurehead, Hjalmar Hammarskjöld, the father of Dag Hammarskjöld, for most of the war. However, after the Liberals and Social Democrats secured a parliamentary majority under Staaff's successor, Nils Edén, he allowed Edén to form a new government which de facto stripped the monarchy of all virtual powers and enacted universal and equal suffrage, including for women, by 1919. Bowing fully to the principles of parliamentary democracy, he remained a popular figurehead for the remaining 31 years of his rule, although not completely without influence – during World War II he allegedly urged Per Albin Hansson's coalition government to accept requests from Nazi Germany for logistics support, refusing which might have provoked an invasion. This remains controversial to date, although he is not known to have shown much support for fascism or radical nationalism; his pro-German and anti-Communist stance was well known also in World War I.

Following his death at age 92, he was implicated in a homosexual affair in the Haijby affair. His alleged lover Kurt Haijby was imprisoned in 1952 for blackmail of the court in the 1930s. (Homosexuality was a criminal offense in Sweden until 1944, though Gustaf's position would have granted automatic immunity.) An avid hunter and sportsman, he presided over the 1912 Olympic Games and chaired the Swedish Association of Sports from 1897 to 1907. Most notably, he represented Sweden (under the alias of Mr G.) as a competitive tennis player, keeping up competitive tennis until his 80s, when his eyesight deteriorated rapidly. He died from flu complications and was succeeded by his son, Gustaf VI Adolf.


5Kr Gustaf V

Sweden 1926 King Gustaf V Semi-postal Set

Sweden 1926 King Gustaf V Semi-postal Set

Sweden 1939 King Gustaf V 10 ore


Wednesday, October 28, 2020

October 28th in stamps Erasmus, Cleveland dedicates the Statue of Liberty, First Czechoslovak Republic

Here are some events that happened on October 28th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1466 Born: Erasmus, Dutch philosopher (d. 1536)

Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus (28 October 1466 – 12 July 1536), known as Erasmus or Erasmus of Rotterdam, was a Dutch Christian humanist who is widely considered to have been the greatest scholar of the northern Renaissance. Originally trained as a Catholic priest, Erasmus was an important figure in classical scholarship who wrote in a pure Latin style.

Among humanists he enjoyed the sobriquet "Prince of the Humanists", and has been called "the crowning glory of the Christian humanists". Using humanist techniques for working on texts, he prepared important new Latin and Greek editions of the New Testament, which raised questions that would be influential in the Protestant Reformation and Catholic Counter-Reformation. He also wrote On Free Will,[5] In Praise of Folly, Handbook of a Christian Knight, On Civility in Children, Copia: Foundations of the Abundant Style, Julius Exclusus, and many other works


Below is a First Day Cover from the Netherlands and a stamp from Belgium depicting Erasmus



1886 – President Cleveland dedicates the Statue of Liberty.

The Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World; French: La Liberté éclairant le monde) is a colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor within New York City, in the United States. The copper statue, a gift from the people of France to the people of the United States, was designed by French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi and its metal framework was built by Gustave Eiffel. The statue was dedicated on October 28, 1886.

The statue is a figure of Libertas, a robed Roman liberty goddess. She holds a torch above her head with her right hand, and in her left hand carries a tabula ansata inscribed JULY IV MDCCLXXVI (July 4, 1776 in Roman numerals), the date of the U.S. Declaration of Independence. A broken shackle and chain lie at her feet as she walks forward, commemorating the recent national abolition of slavery. After its dedication, the statue became an icon of freedom and of the United States, seen as a symbol of welcome to immigrants arriving by sea.

Bartholdi was inspired by a French law professor and politician, Édouard René de Laboulaye, who is said to have commented in 1865 that any monument raised to U.S. independence would properly be a joint project of the French and U.S. peoples. The Franco-Prussian War delayed progress until 1875, when Laboulaye proposed that the French finance the statue and the U.S. provide the site and build the pedestal. Bartholdi completed the head and the torch-bearing arm before the statue was fully designed, and these pieces were exhibited for publicity at international expositions.

The torch-bearing arm was displayed at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia in 1876, and in Madison Square Park in Manhattan from 1876 to 1882. Fundraising proved difficult, especially for the Americans, and by 1885 work on the pedestal was threatened by lack of funds. Publisher Joseph Pulitzer, of the New York World, started a drive for donations to finish the project and attracted more than 120,000 contributors, most of whom gave less than a dollar. The statue was built in France, shipped overseas in crates, and assembled on the completed pedestal on what was then called Bedloe's Island. The statue's completion was marked by New York's first ticker-tape parade and a dedication ceremony presided over by President Grover Cleveland.

The statue was administered by the United States Lighthouse Board until 1901 and then by the Department of War; since 1933 it has been maintained by the National Park Service as part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument, and is a major tourist attraction. The monument was temporarily closed from March 16, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic until partially reopening on July 20, 2020. Public access to the balcony around the torch has been barred since 1916.

Stamps depicting the Statue of Liberty


1956 Statue Of Liberty Souvenir Sheet 3c & 8c Fipex Sheet


1961 11c Statue of Liberty


2006 39c Statue of Liberty & Flag


France 1986 Statue Of Liberty


1918 – First World War: Czech politicians peacefully take over the city of Prague, thus establishing the First Czechoslovak Republic.

The First Czechoslovak Republic (Czech: První československá republika, Slovak: Prvá česko-slovenská republika), often colloquially referred to as the First Republic (Czech: První Republika), was the first Czechoslovak state that existed from 1918 to 1938, dominated by ethnic Czechs and Slovaks, the country was commonly called Czechoslovakia (Czech and Slovak: Československo), a compound of Czech and Slovak; which gradually became the most widely used name for its successor states. It was composed of the territories of Austria-Hungary, having different system of administration of the former respective Austrian (Bohemia, Moravia, a small part of Silesia) and Hungarian territories (mostly Upper Hungary and Carpathian Ruthenia).

After 1933, Czechoslovakia remained the only de facto functioning democracy in Central Europe, organized as a parliamentary republic. Under pressure from its Sudeten German minority, supported by neighbouring Nazi Germany, Czechoslovakia was forced to cede its Sudetenland region to Germany on 1 October 1938 as part of the Munich Agreement. It also ceded southern parts of Slovakia and Carpathian Ruthenia to Hungary and the Zaolzie region in Silesia to Poland. This, in effect, ended the First Czechoslovak Republic. It was replaced by the Second Czechoslovak Republic, which lasted less than half a year before Germany occupied the rest of Czechoslovakia in March 1939.

Hradcany at Prague stamps issued in 1918 and 1919

Czechoslovakia, Hradcany 1-1000heller



Tuesday, October 27, 2020

October 27th in stamps Amsterdam. Michael Servetus, Niccolò Paganini, Theodore Roosevelt

Here are some events that happened on October 27th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1275 – Traditional founding of the city of Amsterdam.

Amsterdam is the capital and most populous city of the Netherlands with a population of 872,680 within the city proper, 1,380,872 in the urban area and 2,410,960 in the metropolitan area. Found within the province of North Holland, Amsterdam is colloquially referred to as the "Venice of the North", attributed by the large number of canals which form a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

After the floods of 1170 and 1173, locals near the river Amstel built a bridge over the river and a dam across it, giving its name to the village: "Aemstelredamme". The earliest recorded use of that name is in a document dated 27 October 1275, which exempted inhabitants of the village from paying bridge tolls to Count Floris V. This allowed the inhabitants of the village of Aemstelredamme to travel freely through the County of Holland, paying no tolls at bridges, locks and dams. The certificate describes the inhabitants as homines manentes apud Amestelledamme (people residing near Amestelledamme). By 1327, the name had developed into Aemsterdam.

Amsterdam's main attractions include its historic canals, the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, the Stedelijk Museum, Hermitage Amsterdam, the Concertgebouw, the Anne Frank House, the Scheepvaartmuseum, the Amsterdam Museum, the Heineken Experience, the Royal Palace of Amsterdam, Natura Artis Magistra, Hortus Botanicus Amsterdam, NEMO, the red-light district and many cannabis coffee shops. It drew more than 5 million international visitors in 2014. The city is also well known for its nightlife and festival activity; with several of its nightclubs (Melkweg, Paradiso) among the world's most famous. Primarily known for its artistic heritage, elaborate canal system and narrow houses with gabled façades; well-preserved legacies of the city's 17th-century Golden Age. These characteristics are arguably responsible for attracting millions of Amsterdam's visitors annually. Cycling is key to the city's character, and there are numerous bike paths.

The Amsterdam Stock Exchange is considered the oldest "modern" securities market stock exchange in the world. As the commercial capital of the Netherlands and one of the top financial centres in Europe, Amsterdam is considered an alpha world city by the Globalization and World Cities (GaWC) study group. The city is also the cultural capital of the Netherlands. Many large Dutch institutions have their headquarters in the city, including: the Philips conglomerate, AkzoNobel, Booking.com, TomTom, and ING. Moreover, many of the world's largest companies are based in Amsterdam or have established their European headquarters in the city, such as leading technology companies Uber, Netflix and Tesla. In 2012, Amsterdam was ranked the second best city to live in by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and 12th globally on quality of living for environment and infrastructure by Mercer. The city was ranked 4th place globally as top tech hub in the Savills Tech Cities 2019 report (2nd in Europe), and 3rd in innovation by Australian innovation agency 2thinknow in their Innovation Cities Index 2009. The Port of Amsterdam is the fifth largest in Europe. The KLM hub and Amsterdam's main airport: Schiphol, is the Netherlands' busiest airport as well as the third busiest in Europe and 11th busiest airport in the world. The Dutch capital is considered one of the most multicultural cities in the world, with at least 177 nationalities represented.

A few of Amsterdam's notable residents throughout history include: painters Rembrandt and Van Gogh, the diarist Anne Frank, and philosopher Baruch Spinoza.

Dutch stamps commemorating Amsterdam

Netherlands 1975 30c Amsterdam

Netherlands Sheet Mooi Nederland  Amsterdam Tram De Dam


1553 – Condemned as a heretic, Michael Servetus is burned at the stake just outside Geneva.

Michael Servetus (Spanish: Miguel Serveto as real name, French: Michel Servet), also known as Miguel Servet, Miguel de Villanueva, Michel Servet, Revés, or Michel de Villeneuve (Tudela, Navarre, 29 September 1509 or 1511 – 27 October 1553), was a Spanish theologian, physician, cartographer, and Renaissance humanist. He was the first European to correctly describe the function of pulmonary circulation, as discussed in Christianismi Restitutio (1553). He was a polymath versed in many sciences: mathematics, astronomy and meteorology, geography, human anatomy, medicine and pharmacology, as well as jurisprudence, translation, poetry and the scholarly study of the Bible in its original languages.

He is renowned in the history of several of these fields, particularly medicine. He participated in the Protestant Reformation, and later rejected the Trinity doctrine and mainstream Catholic Christology. After being condemned by Catholic authorities in France, he fled to Calvinist Geneva where he was burnt at the stake for heresy by order of the city's governing council.

Spanish stamps depicting Servetus

Spain 1977 Miguel Servet, Physician and Theologian


Spain 2011 Miguel Servet, Physician and Theologian



1782 Born: Niccolò Paganini, Italian violinist and composer (d. 1840)

Niccolò (or Nicolò) Paganini (27 October 1782 – 27 May 1840) was an Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He was the most celebrated violin virtuoso of his time, and left his mark as one of the pillars of modern violin technique. His 24 Caprices for Solo Violin Op. 1 are among the best known of his compositions, and have served as an inspiration for many prominent composers.

Niccolò Paganini was born in Genoa, then capital of the Republic of Genoa, the third of the six children of Antonio and Teresa (née Bocciardo) Paganini. Paganini's father was an unsuccessful trader, but he managed to supplement his income by playing music on the mandolin. At the age of five, Paganini started learning the mandolin from his father and moved to the violin by the age of seven. His musical talents were quickly recognized, earning him numerous scholarships for violin lessons. The young Paganini studied under various local violinists, including Giovanni Servetto and Giacomo Costa, but his progress quickly outpaced their abilities. Paganini and his father then traveled to Parma to seek further guidance from Alessandro Rolla. But upon listening to Paganini's playing, Rolla immediately referred him to his own teacher, Ferdinando Paer and, later, Paer's own teacher, Gasparo Ghiretti. Though Paganini did not stay long with Paer or Ghiretti, the two had considerable influence on his composition style.

The French invaded northern Italy in March 1796, and Genoa was not spared. The Paganinis sought refuge in their country property in Romairone, near Bolzaneto. It was in this period that Paganini is thought to have developed his relationship with the guitar. He mastered the guitar, but preferred to play it in exclusively intimate, rather than public concerts. He later described the guitar as his "constant companion" on his concert tours. By 1800, Paganini and his father traveled to Livorno, where Paganini played in concerts and his father resumed his maritime work. In 1801, the 18-year-old Paganini was appointed first violin of the Republic of Lucca, but a substantial portion of his income came from freelancing. His fame as a violinist was matched only by his reputation as a gambler and womanizer.

In 1805, Lucca was annexed by Napoleonic France, and the region was ceded to Napoleon's sister, Elisa Baciocchi. Paganini became a violinist for the Baciocchi court, while giving private lessons to Elisa's husband, Felice. In 1807, Baciocchi became the Grand Duchess of Tuscany and her court was transferred to Florence. Paganini was part of the entourage, but, towards the end of 1809, he left Baciocchi to resume his freelance career.

For the next few years, Paganini returned to touring in the areas surrounding Parma and Genoa. Though he was very popular with the local audience, he was still not very well known in the rest of Europe. His first break came from an 1813 concert at La Scala in Milan. The concert was a great success. As a result, Paganini began to attract the attention of other prominent, though more conservative, musicians across Europe. His early encounters with Charles Philippe Lafont and Louis Spohr created intense rivalry. His concert activities, however, were still limited to Italy for the next few years.

In 1827, Pope Leo XII honoured Paganini with the Order of the Golden Spur. His fame spread across Europe with a concert tour that started in Vienna in August 1828, stopping in every major European city in Germany, Poland, and Bohemia until February 1831 in Strasbourg. This was followed by tours in Paris and Britain. His technical ability and his willingness to display it received much critical acclaim. In addition to his own compositions, theme and variations being the most popular, Paganini also performed modified versions of works (primarily concertos) written by his early contemporaries, such as Rodolphe Kreutzer and Giovanni Battista Viotti.

Paganini's travels also brought him into contact with eminent guitar virtuosi of the day, including Ferdinando Carulli in Paris and Mauro Giuliani in Vienna. But this experience did not inspire him to play public concerts with guitar, and even performances of his own guitar trios and quartets were private to the point of being behind closed doors.

Throughout his life, Paganini was no stranger to chronic illnesses. Although no definite medical proof exists, he was reputed to have been affected by Marfan syndrome or Ehlers–Danlos syndrome. In addition, his frequent concert schedule, as well as his extravagant lifestyle, took their toll on his health. He was diagnosed with syphilis as early as 1822, and his remedy, which included mercury and opium, came with serious physical and psychological side effects. In 1834, while still in Paris, he was treated for tuberculosis. Though his recovery was reasonably quick, after the illness his career was marred by frequent cancellations due to various health problems, from the common cold to depression, which lasted from days to months.

In September 1834, Paganini put an end to his concert career and returned to Genoa. Contrary to popular beliefs involving his wishing to keep his music and techniques secret, Paganini devoted his time to the publication of his compositions and violin methods. He accepted students, of whom two enjoyed moderate success: violinist Camillo Sivori and cellist Gaetano Ciandelli. Neither, however, considered Paganini helpful or inspirational. In 1835, Paganini returned to Parma, this time under the employ of Archduchess Marie Louise of Austria, Napoleon's second wife. He was in charge of reorganizing her court orchestra. However, he eventually conflicted with the players and court, so his visions never saw completion. In Paris, he befriended the 11-year-old Polish virtuoso Apollinaire de Kontski, giving him some lessons and a signed testimonial. It was widely put about, falsely, that Paganini was so impressed with de Kontski's skills that he bequeathed him his violins and manuscripts.

In 1836, Paganini returned to Paris to set up a casino. Its immediate failure left him in financial ruin, and he auctioned off his personal effects, including his musical instruments, to recoup his losses. At Christmas of 1838, he left Paris for Marseilles and, after a brief stay, travelled to Nice where his condition worsened. In May 1840, the Bishop of Nice sent Paganini a local parish priest to perform the last rites. Paganini assumed the sacrament was premature, and refused.

A week later, on 27 May 1840, Paganini died from internal hemorrhaging before a priest could be summoned. Because of this, and his widely rumored association with the devil, the Church denied his body a Catholic burial in Genoa. It took four years and an appeal to the Pope before the Church let his body be transported to Genoa, but it was still not buried. His body was finally buried in 1876, in a cemetery in Parma. In 1893, the Czech violinist František Ondříček persuaded Paganini's grandson, Attila, to allow a viewing of the violinist's body. After this episode, Paganini's body was finally reinterred in a new cemetery in Parma in 1896.

Stamps from Italy and Monaco depicting Paganini

Monaco nicolo paganini

Italy - 1982 Niccolo Paganini


1858 Born: Theodore Roosevelt, American colonel and politician, 26th President of the United States, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1919)

Theodore Roosevelt Jr. (October 27, 1858 – January 6, 1919) was an American statesman, politician, conservationist, naturalist, and writer who served as the 26th president of the United States from 1901 to 1909. He served as the 25th vice president from March to September 1901 and as the 33rd governor of New York from 1899 to 1900. As a leader of the Republican Party, he became a driving force for the Progressive Era in the United States in the early 20th century. His face is depicted on Mount Rushmore alongside George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln. He is generally ranked in polls of historians and political scientists as one of the five best presidents. 

Roosevelt was a sickly child with debilitating asthma, but he overcame his health problems by embracing a strenuous lifestyle, as well as growing out of his asthma naturally in his young adult years. He integrated his exuberant personality, vast range of interests, and world-famous achievements into a "cowboy" persona defined by robust masculinity. He was home-schooled, and he began a lifelong naturalist avocation before attending Harvard College. His book The Naval War of 1812 (1882) established his reputation as a learned historian and as a popular writer. Upon entering politics, he became the leader of the reform faction of Republicans in New York's state legislature. His wife and his mother both died in rapid succession, and he escaped to a cattle ranch in the Dakotas. He served as Assistant Secretary of the Navy under President William McKinley, but he resigned from that post to lead the Rough Riders during the Spanish–American War, returning a war hero. He was elected Governor of New York in 1898. Vice President Garret Hobart died, and the New York state party leadership convinced McKinley to accept Roosevelt as his running mate in the 1900 election. Roosevelt campaigned vigorously, and the McKinley-Roosevelt ticket won a landslide victory based on a platform of peace, prosperity, and conservation.

Roosevelt took office as vice president in March 1901 and assumed the presidency at age 42 after McKinley was assassinated the following September. He remains the youngest person to become President of the United States. Roosevelt was a leader of the Progressive movement, and he championed his "Square Deal" domestic policies, promising the average citizen fairness, breaking of trusts, regulation of railroads, and pure food and drugs. He made conservation a top priority and established many new national parks, forests, and monuments intended to preserve the nation's natural resources. In foreign policy, he focused on Central America where he began construction of the Panama Canal. He expanded the Navy and sent the Great White Fleet on a world tour to project the United States' naval power around the globe. His successful efforts to broker the end of the Russo-Japanese War won him the 1906 Nobel Peace Prize. He avoided controversial tariff and money issues. Roosevelt was elected to a full term in 1904 and continued to promote progressive policies, many of which were passed in Congress. He groomed his close friend William Howard Taft, and Taft won the 1908 presidential election to succeed him.

Roosevelt grew frustrated with Taft's conservatism and belatedly tried to win the 1912 Republican nomination. He failed, walked out, and founded the so-called "Bull Moose" Party which called for wide-ranging progressive reforms. He ran in the 1912 election and the split allowed the Democratic nominee Woodrow Wilson to win the election. Following the defeat, Roosevelt led a two-year expedition to the Amazon basin where he nearly died of tropical disease. During World War I, he criticized President Wilson for keeping the country out of the war with Germany, and his offer to lead volunteers to France was rejected. He considered running for president again in 1920, but his health continued to deteriorate and he died in 1919.

US stamps depicting Teddy Roosevelt

1927 5c Theodore Roosevelt, Dark Blue

1938 30c Theodore Roosevelt Jr

1955 6c Theodore Roosevelt

Theodore Teddy Roosevelt  FDC