Showing posts with label France. Show all posts
Showing posts with label France. Show all posts

Friday, February 26, 2021

February 26th in stamps Galileo Galilei, Victor Hugo, Napoleon Bonaparte escapes from Elba, Buffalo Bill

Here are some events that happened on February 26th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1616 – Galileo Galilei is formally banned by the Roman Catholic Church from teaching or defending the view that the earth orbits the sun.

Galileo di Vincenzo Bonaulti de Galilei (15 February 1564 – 8 January 1642) was an Italian astronomer, physicist and engineer, sometimes described as a polymath, from Pisa. Galileo has been called the "father of observational astronomy", the "father of modern physics", the "father of the scientific method", and the "father of modern science".

Galileo studied speed and velocity, gravity and free fall, the principle of relativity, inertia, projectile motion and also worked in applied science and technology, describing the properties of pendulums and "hydrostatic balances", inventing the thermoscope and various military compasses, and using the telescope for scientific observations of celestial objects. His contributions to observational astronomy include the telescopic confirmation of the phases of Venus, the observation of the four largest satellites of Jupiter, the observation of Saturn's rings, and the analysis of sunspots.

Galileo's championing of heliocentrism and Copernicanism was controversial during his lifetime, when most subscribed to geocentric models such as the Tychonic system. He met with opposition from astronomers, who doubted heliocentrism because of the absence of an observed stellar parallax. The matter was investigated by the Roman Inquisition in 1615, which concluded that heliocentrism was "foolish and absurd in philosophy, and formally heretical since it explicitly contradicts in many places the sense of Holy Scripture".

Galileo later defended his views in Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems (1632), which appeared to attack Pope Urban VIII and thus alienated him and the Jesuits, who had both supported Galileo up until this point. He was tried by the Inquisition, found "vehemently suspect of heresy", and forced to recant. He spent the rest of his life under house arrest. While under house arrest, he wrote Two New Sciences, in which he summarized work he had done some forty years earlier on the two sciences now called kinematics and strength of materials.

Stamps from Hungary, Italy and Luxembourg depicting Galileo

Hungary 1964 Galileo


Italy 1964 Galileo Galilei Astronomer And Physicist


Italy Galileo Galilei Blocks of 4


Luxembourg 2009 Europa Space Astronomy Galileo Set


1802 Born: Victor Hugo, French author, poet, and playwright (d. 1885)

Victor-Marie Hugo (26 February 1802 – 22 May 1885) was a French poet, novelist, and dramatist of the Romantic movement. During a literary career that spanned more than sixty years, he wrote abundantly in an exceptional variety of genres: lyrics, satires, epics, philosophical poems, epigrams, novels, history, critical essays, political speeches, funeral orations, diaries, letters public and private, as well as dramas in verse and prose.

Hugo is considered to be one of the greatest and best-known French writers. Outside France, his most famous works are the novels Les Misérables, 1862, and The Hunchback of Notre-Dame (French: Notre-Dame de Paris), 1831. In France, Hugo is renowned for his poetry collections, such as Les Contemplations (The Contemplations) and La Légende des siècles (The Legend of the Ages). Hugo was at the forefront of the Romantic literary movement with his play Cromwell and drama Hernani. Many of his works have inspired music, both during his lifetime and after his death, including the musicals Les Misérables and Notre-Dame de Paris. He produced more than 4,000 drawings in his lifetime, and campaigned for social causes such as the abolition of capital punishment.

Though a committed royalist when he was young, Hugo's views changed as the decades passed, and he became a passionate supporter of republicanism serving in politics as both deputy and senator. His work touched upon most of the political and social issues and the artistic trends of his time. His opposition to absolutism and his colossal literary achievement established him as a national hero. He was honored by interment in the Panthéon.

French and Hungarian stamps depicting Victor Hugo

France 1933 - Victor Hugo

France Intellectuals Relief Fund- Victor Hugo

Hungary 1848 - Victor Hugo



1815 – Napoleon Bonaparte escapes from Elba.

Napoleon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821), born Napoleone di Buonaparte, was a French statesman and military leader who became famous as an artillery commander during the French Revolution. He led many successful campaigns during the French Revolutionary Wars and was Emperor of the French as Napoleon I from 1804 until 1814 and again briefly in 1815 during the Hundred Days. Napoleon dominated European and global affairs for more than a decade while leading France against a series of coalitions during the Napoleonic Wars. He won many of these wars and a vast majority of his battles, building a large empire that ruled over much of continental Europe before its final collapse in 1815. He is considered one of the greatest commanders in history, and his wars and campaigns are studied at military schools worldwide. Napoleon's political and cultural legacy has made him one of the most celebrated and controversial leaders in human history.  


Napoleon's influence on the modern world brought liberal reforms to the numerous territories that he conquered and controlled, such as the Low Countries, Switzerland, and large parts of modern Italy and Germany. He implemented fundamental liberal policies in France and throughout Western Europe. His Napoleonic Code has influenced the legal systems of more than 70 nations around the world. British historian Andrew Roberts states: "The ideas that underpin our modern world—meritocracy, equality before the law, property rights, religious toleration, modern secular education, sound finances, and so on—were championed, consolidated, codified and geographically extended by Napoleon. To them he added a rational and efficient local administration, an end to rural banditry, the encouragement of science and the arts, the abolition of feudalism and the greatest codification of laws since the fall of the Roman Empire". 

Stamps from France and Monaco commemorating Napoleon

Monaco 1969 Bicentenary Birth of Napoleon

France 1969 Napoleon As a Young Officer And Birthplace, Ajaccio


1846 Born: Buffalo Bill, American soldier and hunter (d. 1917)

William Frederick "Buffalo Bill" Cody (February 26, 1846 – January 10, 1917) was an American soldier, bison hunter, and showman. He was born in Le Claire, Iowa Territory (now the U.S. state of Iowa), but he lived for several years in his father's hometown in Toronto Township, Ontario, Canada, before the family returned to the Midwest and settled in the Kansas Territory.

Buffalo Bill started working at the age of eleven, after his father's death, and became a rider for the Pony Express at age 15. During the American Civil War, he served the Union from 1863 to the end of the war in 1865. Later he served as a civilian scout for the US Army during the Indian Wars, receiving the Medal of Honor in 1872.

One of the most famous and well known figures of the American Old West, Buffalo Bill's legend began to spread when he was only twenty-three. Shortly thereafter he started performing in shows that displayed cowboy themes and episodes from the frontier and Indian Wars. He founded Buffalo Bill's Wild West in 1883, taking his large company on tours in the United States and, beginning in 1887, in Great Britain and continental Europe.

US stamps depicting Buffalo Bill

15c Buffalo Bill
US Cover Buffalo Bill

Thursday, February 25, 2021

February 25th in stamps Renoir, Karl May, Tennessee Williams

Here are some events that happened on February 25th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1841 Born: Pierre-Auguste Renoir, French painter and sculptor (d. 1919)

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, commonly known as Auguste Renoir 25 February 1841 – 3 December 1919), was a French artist who was a leading painter in the development of the Impressionist style. As a celebrator of beauty and especially feminine sensuality, it has been said that "Renoir is the final representative of a tradition which runs directly from Rubens to Watteau."

Renoir's paintings are notable for their vibrant light and saturated color, most often focusing on people in intimate and candid compositions. The female nude was one of his primary subjects. In characteristic Impressionist style, Renoir suggested the details of a scene through freely brushed touches of color, so that his figures softly fuse with one another and their surroundings.

A prolific artist, he created several thousand paintings. The warm sensuality of Renoir's style made his paintings some of the most well-known and frequently reproduced works in the history of art. The single largest collection of his works—181 paintings in all—is at the Barnes Foundation, in Philadelphia

Stamps from France and Yugoslavia depicting Renoir's works


France -1968- Art Work Paintings - Auguste Renoir

Yugoslavia -1984- Paintings In Yugoslav Museum - 'the Bathers' By Renoir


1842 Born: Karl May, German author, poet, and playwright (d. 1912)

Karl Friedrich May (25 February 1842 – 30 March 1912) was a German author. He is best known for his travel novels set on one hand in the American Old West with Winnetou and Old Shatterhand as main protagonists and on the other hand in the Orient and Middle East with Kara Ben Nemsi and Hadschi Halef Omar. May also wrote novels set in Latin America and Germany, poetry, a play, and composed music; he was a proficient player of several musical instruments. Many of his works were adapted for film, stage, audio dramas and comics. Later in his career, May turned to philosophical and spiritual genres. He is one of the best-selling German writers of all time, with about 200,000,000 copies worldwide.

German stamp depicting Winnetou 

West Germany 1987 Winnetou Karl May


1983 Died: Tennessee Williams, American playwright, and poet (b. 1911)

Thomas Lanier Williams III (March 26, 1911 – February 25, 1983), known by his pen name Tennessee Williams, was an American playwright. Along with contemporaries Eugene O'Neill and Arthur Miller, he is considered among the three foremost playwrights of 20th-century American drama.

At age 33, after years of obscurity, Williams suddenly became famous with the success of The Glass Menagerie (1944) in New York City. This play closely reflected his own unhappy family background. It was the first of a string of successes, including A Streetcar Named Desire (1947), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955), Sweet Bird of Youth (1959), and The Night of the Iguana (1961). With his later work, Williams attempted a new style that did not appeal as widely to audiences. His drama A Streetcar Named Desire is often numbered on short lists of the finest American plays of the 20th century alongside Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey into Night and Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman.

Much of Williams' most acclaimed work has been adapted for the cinema. He also wrote short stories, poetry, essays and a volume of memoirs. In 1979, four years before his death, Williams was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame.


US stamp and minisheet depicting Tennessee Williams

Tennessee Williams 1995


Tennessee Williams 1995 minisheet


Tuesday, February 23, 2021

February 23rd in stamps Orange Free State, Émile Zola, Carl Friedrich Gauss, John Quincy Adams

Here are some events that happened on February 23rd. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1848 Died: John Quincy Adams, American politician, 6th President of the United States (b. 1767)

John Quincy Adams (July 11, 1767 – February 23, 1848) was an American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, and diarist who served as the sixth president of the United States, from 1825 to 1829. He previously served as the eighth United States Secretary of State from 1817 to 1825. During his long diplomatic and political career, Adams also served as an ambassador, and as a member of the United States Senate and House of Representatives representing Massachusetts. He was the eldest son of John Adams, who served as the second US president from 1797 to 1801, and First Lady Abigail Adams. Initially a Federalist like his father, he won election to the presidency as a member of the Democratic-Republican Party, and in the mid-1830s became affiliated with the Whig Party.

Born in what is now Quincy, Massachusetts (then part of the town of Braintree), Adams spent much of his youth in Europe, where his father served as a diplomat. After returning to the United States, Adams established a successful legal practice in Boston. In 1794, President George Washington appointed Adams as the U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands, and Adams would serve in high-ranking diplomatic posts until 1801, when Thomas Jefferson took office as president. Federalist leaders in Massachusetts arranged for Adams's election to the United States Senate in 1802, but Adams broke with the Federalist Party over foreign policy and was denied re-election. In 1809, Adams was appointed as the U.S. ambassador to Russia by President James Madison, a member of the Democratic-Republican Party. Adams held diplomatic posts for the duration of Madison's presidency, and he served as part of the American delegation that negotiated an end to the War of 1812. In 1817, newly elected president James Monroe selected Adams as his Secretary of State. In that role, Adams negotiated the Adams–Onís Treaty, which provided for the American acquisition of Florida. He also helped formulate the Monroe Doctrine, which became a key tenet of U.S. foreign policy.

The 1824 presidential election was contested by Adams, Andrew Jackson, William H. Crawford, and Henry Clay, all of whom were members of the Democratic-Republican Party. As no candidate won a majority of the electoral vote, the House of Representatives held a contingent election to determine the president, and Adams won that contingent election with the support of Clay. As president, Adams called for an ambitious agenda that included federally funded infrastructure projects, the establishment of a national university, and engagement with the countries of Latin America, but many of his initiatives were defeated in Congress. During Adams's presidency, the Democratic-Republican Party polarized into two major camps: one group, known as the National Republican Party, supported President Adams, while the other group, known as the Democratic Party, was led by Andrew Jackson. The Democrats proved to be more effective political organizers than Adams and his National Republican supporters, and Jackson decisively defeated Adams in the 1828 presidential election, the second president (after his father) to fail re-election.

Rather than retiring from public service, Adams won election to the House of Representatives, where he would serve from 1831 to his death in 1848. He remains the only ex-president to be elected to the chamber (although John Tyler was elected a Confederate representative, dying before seated). Narrowly failing attempts at Governor of Massachusetts and re-election to the Senate, Adams joined the Anti-Masonic Party in the early 1830s before becoming a member of the Whig Party, which united those opposed to President Jackson. During his time in Congress, Adams became increasingly critical of slavery and of the Southern leaders who he believed controlled the Democratic Party. He was particularly opposed to the annexation of Texas and the Mexican–American War, which he saw as a war to extend slavery and its political grip on Congress. He also led the repeal of the "gag rule", which had prevented the House of Representatives from debating petitions to abolish slavery. Historians generally concur that Adams was one of the greatest diplomats and secretaries of state in American history; they typically rank him as an average president, as he had an ambitious agenda but could not get it passed by Congress.

US Stamps depicting John Quincy Adams

1938 6c John Quincy Adams, 6th President


John Quincy Adams (1767-1848) 6th President (1825-1828) 1986


1854 – The official independence of the Orange Free State is declared.

The Orange Free State (Dutch: Oranje Vrijstaat, Afrikaans: Oranje-Vrystaat, abbreviated as OVS) was an independent Boer sovereign republic under British suzerainty in Southern Africa during the second half of the 19th century, which ceased to exist after it was defeated and surrendered to the British Empire at the end of the Second Boer War in 1902. It is one of the three historical precursors to the present-day Free State province.

Extending between the Orange and Vaal rivers, its borders were determined by the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland in 1848 when the region was proclaimed as the Orange River Sovereignty, with a British Resident based in Bloemfontein. Bloemfontein and the southern parts of the Sovereignty had previously been settled by Griqua and by Trekboere from the Cape Colony.

The Voortrekker Republic of Natalia, founded in 1837, administered the northern part of the territory through a landdrost based at Winburg. This northern area was later in federation with the Republic of Potchefstroom which eventually formed part of the South African Republic (Transvaal).

Following the granting of sovereignty to the Transvaal Republic, the British recognised the independence of the Orange River Sovereignty and the country officially became independent as the Orange Free State on 23 February 1854, with the signing of the Orange River Convention. The new republic incorporated the Orange River Sovereignty and continued the traditions of the Winburg-Potchefstroom Republic.

The Orange Free State developed into a politically and economically successful republic and for the most part enjoyed good relationships with its neighbors. It was annexed as the Orange River Colony in 1900. It ceased to exist as an independent Boer republic on 31 May 1902 with the signing of the Treaty of Vereeniging at the conclusion of the Second Boer War. Following a period of direct rule by the British, it attained self-government in 1907 and joined the Union of South Africa in 1910 as the Orange Free State Province, along with the Cape Province, Natal, and the Transvaal. In 1961, the Union of South Africa became the Republic of South Africa.

The Republic's name derives partly from the Orange River, which in turn was named in honor of the Dutch ruling family, the House of Orange, by the Dutch explorer Robert Jacob Gordon. The official language in the Orange Free State was Dutch.

Some stamps issued by the Orange Free State 

Orange Free State 1868 6d rose


Orange Free State 1897


1855 Died: Carl Friedrich Gauss, German mathematician, astronomer, and physicist (b. 1777)

Johann Carl Friedrich Gauss (Latin: Carolus Fridericus Gauss; 30 April 1777 – 23 February 1855) was a German mathematician and physicist who made significant contributions to many fields in mathematics and science. Sometimes referred to as the Princeps mathematicorum (Latin for '"the foremost of mathematicians"') and "the greatest mathematician since antiquity", Gauss had an exceptional influence in many fields of mathematics and science, and is ranked among history's most influential mathematicians.

German stamp and First Day Cover depicting Gauss


Germany, Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Carl Friedrich Gauss

Germany 1977 FDC Mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss Plane of Complex Numbers



1898 – Émile Zola is imprisoned in France after writing J'Accuse…!, a letter accusing the French government of antisemitism and wrongfully imprisoning Captain Alfred Dreyfus.

Émile Édouard Charles Antoine Zola (2 April 1840 – 29 September 1902) was a French novelist, playwright, journalist, the best-known practitioner of the literary school of naturalism, and an important contributor to the development of theatrical naturalism. He was a major figure in the political liberalization of France and in the exoneration of the falsely accused and convicted army officer Alfred Dreyfus, which is encapsulated in the renowned newspaper headline J'Accuse…! Zola was nominated for the first and second Nobel Prize in Literature in 1901 and 1902

More than half of Zola's novels were part of a set of 20 collectively known as Les Rougon-Macquart, about a family under the Second Empire. Unlike Balzac, who in the midst of his literary career resynthesized his work into La Comédie Humaine, Zola from the start, at the age of 28, had thought of the complete layout of the series. Set in France's Second Empire, in the context of Baron Haussman's changing Paris, the series traces the "environmental" influences of violence, alcohol, and prostitution which became more prevalent during the second wave of the Industrial Revolution. The series examines two branches of a family—the respectable (that is, legitimate) Rougons and the disreputable (illegitimate) Macquarts—for five generations.

As he described his plans for the series, "I want to portray, at the outset of a century of liberty and truth, a family that cannot restrain itself in its rush to possess all the good things that progress is making available and is derailed by its own momentum, the fatal convulsions that accompany the birth of a new world."

He is considered to be a significant influence on those writers that are credited with the creation of the so-called new journalism; Wolfe, Capote, Thompson, Mailer, Didion, Talese and others. Tom Wolfe wrote that his goal in writing fiction was to document contemporary society in the tradition of John Steinbeck, Charles Dickens, and Émile Zola.

Emile Zola - L'Assommoir, Germinal, J'Beschuldigt - Paris


France 2002 - Death of Emile Zola, 1840-1902


France Emile Zola


1934 – Leopold III becomes King of Belgium.

Leopold III (3 November 1901 – 25 September 1983) was King of the Belgians from 1934 until 1951, when he abdicated in favor of the heir apparent, his son Baudouin. From 1944 until 1950, Leopold's brother, Charles, served as prince regent while Leopold was declared unable to reign. Leopold's controversial actions during the Second World War resulted in a political crisis known as the Royal Question. In 1950, the debate about whether Leopold could resume his royal functions escalated. Following a referendum, Leopold was allowed to return from exile to Belgium, but the continuing political instability pressured him to abdicate in 1951.

Leopold was born in Brussels and succeeded to the throne of Belgium on 23 February 1934, following the death of his father King Albert I.

Some stamps issued by Belgium depicting King Leopold III

Belgium 1934 Leopold III For Victims of War


Belgium King Leopold III


Belgium King Leopold III in Military Plane


Belgium King Leopold III

Monday, February 22, 2021

February 22nd in stamps Amerigo Vespucci, George Washington, August Bebel, Heinrich Hertz

Here are some events that happened on February 22nd. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day



1512 Died: Amerigo Vespucci, Italian cartographer and explorer (b. 1454)

Amerigo Vespucci (March 9, 1454 – February 22, 1512) was an Italian explorer, financier, navigator, and cartographer from the Republic of Florence. Sailing for Portugal around 1501–1502, Vespucci demonstrated that Brazil and the West Indies were not Asia's eastern outskirts (as initially conjectured from Columbus' voyages) but a separate continent described as the "New World". In 1507, the new continent was named America after the Latin version of Vespucci's first name.  Vespucci then became a citizen of the Crown of Castile and died in Seville (1512).

Stamps from Italy, France and Belgium commemorating Amerigo Vespucci

Italy 1954 - Vespucci

Belgium Amerigo  Vespucci


France Amerigo  Vespucci


1732 Born: George Washington, American general and politician, 1st President of the United States (d. 1799)

George Washington (February 22, 1732 – December 14, 1799) was an American political leader, military general, statesman, and Founding Father who served as the first president of the United States from 1789 to 1797. Previously, he led Patriot forces to victory in the nation's War for Independence. He presided at the Constitutional Convention of 1787, which established the U.S. Constitution and a federal government. Washington has been called the "Father of His Country" for his manifold leadership in the formative days of the new nation.

Washington received his initial military training and command with the Virginia Regiment during the French and Indian War. He was later elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses and was named a delegate to the Continental Congress, where he was appointed Commanding General of the Continental Army. He commanded American forces, allied with France, in the defeat and surrender of the British during the Siege of Yorktown. He resigned his commission after the Treaty of Paris in 1783.

Washington played a key role in adopting and ratifying the Constitution and was then twice elected president by the Electoral College. He implemented a strong, well-financed national government while remaining impartial in a fierce rivalry between cabinet members Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton. During the French Revolution, he proclaimed a policy of neutrality while sanctioning the Jay Treaty. He set enduring precedents for the office of president, including the title "Mr. President", and his Farewell Address is widely regarded as a pre-eminent statement on republicanism.

Washington owned slaves, and, in order to preserve national unity, he supported measures passed by Congress to protect slavery. He later became troubled with the institution of slavery and freed his slaves in a 1799 will. He endeavored to assimilate Native Americans into Anglo-American culture, but combated indigenous resistance during instances of violent conflict. He was a member of the Anglican Church and the Freemasons, and he urged broad religious freedom in his roles as general and president. Upon his death, he was eulogized as "first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen". He has been memorialized by monuments, art, geographical locations, stamps, and currency, and many scholars and polls rank him among the greatest U.S. presidents.

US Stamps depicting George Washington

1894 2c George Washington

1911 - 2¢ George Washington

1911 - 4¢ George Washington

1911 - 3¢ George Washington

1911 - 5¢ George Washington



1840 Born: August Bebel, German theorist and politician (d. 1913)

Ferdinand August Bebel (22 February 1840 – 13 August 1913) was a German socialist politician, writer, and orator. He is best remembered as one of the founders of the Social Democratic Workers' Party of Germany (SDAP) in 1869, which in 1875 merged with the General German Workers' Association into the Socialist Workers' Party of Germany (SAPD). During the repression under the terms of the Anti-Socialist Laws, Bebel became the leading figure of the social democratic movement in Germany and from 1892 until his death served as chairman of the Social Democratic Party of Germany.

Stamps from Germany and East Germany depicting Heinrich Hertz

DDR August Bebel

DDR GDR 1990 MNH 150th Birth Anniv Politician August Bebel

Germany August Bebel



1857 Born: Heinrich Hertz, German physicist, philosopher, and academic (d. 1894)

Heinrich Rudolf Hertz (22 February 1857 – 1 January 1894) was a German physicist who first conclusively proved the existence of the electromagnetic waves predicted by James Clerk Maxwell's equations of electromagnetism. The unit of frequency, cycle per second, was named the "Hertz" in his honor.


In 1864 Scottish mathematical physicist James Clerk Maxwell proposed a comprehensive theory of electromagnetism, now called Maxwell's equations. Maxwell's theory predicted that coupled electric and magnetic fields could travel through space as an "electromagnetic wave". Maxwell proposed that light consisted of electromagnetic waves of short wavelength, but no one had been able to prove this, or generate or detect electromagnetic waves of other wavelengths.

During Hertz's studies in 1879 Helmholtz suggested that Hertz's doctoral dissertation be on testing Maxwell's theory. Helmholtz had also proposed the "Berlin Prize" problem that year at the Prussian Academy of Sciences for anyone who could experimentally prove an electromagnetic effect in the polarization and depolarization of insulators, something predicted by Maxwell's theory.  Helmholtz was sure Hertz was the most likely candidate to win it. Not seeing any way to build an apparatus to experimentally test this, Hertz thought it was too difficult, and worked on electromagnetic induction instead. Hertz did produce an analysis of Maxwell's equations during his time at Kiel, showing they did have more validity than the then prevalent "action at a distance" theories.

After Hertz received his professorship at Karlsruhe he was experimenting with a pair of Riess spirals in the autumn of 1886 when he noticed that discharging a Leyden jar into one of these coils would produce a spark in the other coil. With an idea on how to build an apparatus, Hertz now had a way to proceed with the "Berlin Prize" problem of 1879 on proving Maxwell's theory (although the actual prize had expired uncollected in 1882).  He used a Ruhmkorff coil-driven spark gap and one-meter wire pair as a radiator. Capacity spheres were present at the ends for circuit resonance adjustments. His receiver was a simple half-wave dipole antenna with a micrometer spark gap between the elements. This experiment produced and received what are now called radio waves in the very high frequency range.

Stamps from Germany depicting Heinrich Hertz

Germany 1994 Heinrich Hertz


Germany 1957 Heinrich Hertz

Saturday, February 20, 2021

February 20th in stamps Alfred Escher, Ansel Adams, Henri Moissan, Max Schreck

Here are some events that happened on February 20th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1819 Born: Alfred Escher, Swiss businessman and politician (d. 1882)

Johann Heinrich Alfred Escher vom Glas, known as Alfred Escher (20 February 1819 – 6 December 1882) was a Swiss politician, business leader and railways pioneer. Thanks to his numerous political posts and his significant role in the foundation and management of the Swiss Northeastern Railway, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Credit Suisse, Swiss Life and the Gotthard Railway, Escher had an unmatched influence on Switzerland's political and economic development in the 19th century.

Swiss stamps depicting Alfred Escher

Switzerland 2019 200. Birthday Alfred Escher President Gotthard Railway



1902 Born: Ansel Adams, American photographer and environmentalist (d. 1984)

Ansel Easton Adams (February 20, 1902 – April 22, 1984) was an American landscape photographer and environmentalist known for his black-and-white images of the American West. He helped found Group f/64, an association of photographers advocating "pure" photography which favored sharp focus and the use of the full tonal range of a photograph. He and Fred Archer developed an exacting system of image-making called the Zone System, a method of achieving a desired final print through a deeply technical understanding of how tonal range is recorded and developed in exposure, negative development, and printing. The resulting clarity and depth of such images characterized his photography.

Adams was a life-long advocate for environmental conservation, and his photographic practice was deeply entwined with this advocacy. At age 12, he was given his first camera during his first visit to Yosemite National Park. He developed his early photographic work as a member of the Sierra Club. He was later contracted with the United States Department of the Interior to make photographs of national parks. For his work and his persistent advocacy, which helped expand the National Park system, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1980.

Adams was a key advisor in establishing the photography department at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, an important landmark in securing photography's institutional legitimacy. He helped to stage that department's first photography exhibition, helped found the photography magazine Aperture, and co-founded the Center for Creative Photography at the University of Arizona.

US minisheet featuring Ansel Adam's works

US Sheet 37c Masters of Photography



1907 Died: Henri Moissan, French chemist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1852)

Ferdinand Frédéric Henri Moissan (28 September 1852 – 20 February 1907) was a French chemist and pharmacist who won the 1906 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work in isolating fluorine from its compounds. Moissan was one of the original members of the International Atomic Weights Committee.

Moissan was born in Paris on 28 September 1852, the son of a minor officer of the eastern railway company, Francis Ferdinand Moissan, and a seamstress, Joséphine Améraldine (née Mitel). His mother was of Jewish descent, his father wasn't. In 1864 they moved to Meaux, where he attended the local school. In 1870 he left the school without the grade universitaire necessary to attend university. Moissan became a trainee in pharmacy in 1871 and in 1872 he started working for a chemist in Paris, where he was able to save a person poisoned with arsenic. He decided to study chemistry and began first at the laboratory of Edmond Frémy and later at that of Pierre Paul Dehérain. Dehérain persuaded him to pursue an academic career. He passed the baccalauréat, which was necessary to study at university, in 1874 after an earlier failed attempt. He also became qualified as first-class pharmacist at the École Supérieure de Pharmacie in 1879, and received his doctoral degree from the Faculté des Sciences in 1880. During his time in Paris he became a friend of the chemist Alexandre Léon Étard and the botanist Vasque.

He published his first scientific paper, about carbon dioxide and oxygen metabolism in plants, with Dehérain in 1874. He left plant physiology and then turned towards inorganic chemistry; subsequently his research on pyrophoric iron was well received by the two most prominent French inorganic chemists of that time, Henri Etienne Sainte-Claire Deville and Jules Henri Debray. After Moissan received his Ph.D. on cyanogen and its reactions to form cyanures in 1880, his friend Landrine offered him a position at an analytic laboratory. His marriage, to Léonie Lugan, took place in 1882. They had a son in 1885.

During the 1880s, Moissan focused on fluorine chemistry and especially the production of fluorine itself. He had no laboratory of his own, but used several laboratories, for example that of Charles Friedel. There he had access to a strong battery consisting of 90 Bunsen cells which made it possible to observe a gas produced by the electrolysis of molten arsenic trichloride; the gas was reabsorbed by the arsenic trichloride. The electrolysis of hydrogen fluoride yielded fluorine on 26 June 1886. The French academy of science sent three representatives, Marcellin Berthelot, Henri Debray, and Edmond Frémy, to verify the results, but Moissan was unable to reproduce them, owing to the absence from the hydrogen fluoride of traces of potassium fluoride present in the previous experiments. After resolving the problem and demonstrating the production of fluorine several times, he was awarded a prize of 10,000 francs. In subsequent years, until 1891, he focused on the study of fluorine chemistry. He discovered numerous fluorine compounds, such as (together with Paul Lebeau) SF6 in 1901. His research in the production of boron and artificial diamonds and the development of an electrically heated oven capable of reaching 3500 °C using 2200 amperes at 80 volts followed by 1900.

His newly developed arc furnace led to the production of borides and carbides of numerous elements (e.g. silicon boride), another of his research areas.


French stamps depicting Henri Moissan

Henri Moissan, Nobel Chemistry Winner, France 1986

France 2006 - Henri Moissan - Nobel Prize Winner in Chemistry



1936 Died: Max Schreck, German actor (b. 1879)

Friedrich Gustav Maximilian Schreck (6 September 1879 – 20 February 1936), known professionally as Max Schreck, was a German actor, best known for his lead role as the vampire Count Orlok in the film Nosferatu (1922)

Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror (German: Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens), or simply Nosferatu, is a 1922 German Expressionist horror film, directed by F. W. Murnau, starring Max Schreck as the vampire Count Orlok. The film, shot in 1921 and released in 1922, was an unauthorized adaptation of Bram Stoker's Dracula (1897); the Stoker Estate had refused permission. Various names and other details were changed from the novel: for instance, vampire became Nosferatu, and Count Dracula became Count Orlok.

Stoker's heirs sued over the adaptation, and a court ruling ordered that all copies of the film be destroyed. However, a few prints of Nosferatu survived, and the film came to be regarded as an influential masterpiece of cinema.

The film was released in the United States on 3 June 1929, seven years after its original premiere in Germany.

Below are 2 Maxicards issued in Spain commemorating Nosferatu



Thursday, February 18, 2021

February 18th Victor Emmanuel II, Alessandro Volta, Martin Luther, Michelangelo

Here are some events that happened on February 18th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1546 Died: Martin Luther, German priest and theologian, leader of the Protestant Reformation (b. 1483)

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




1564 Died: Michelangelo, Italian sculptor and painter (b. 1475)

Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (6 March 1475 – 18 February 1564), known best as simply Michelangelo, was an Italian sculptor, painter, architect and poet of the High Renaissance born in the Republic of Florence, who exerted an unparalleled influence on the development of Western art. Considered by many the greatest artist of his lifetime, and by some the greatest artist of all time, his artistic versatility was of such a high order that he is often considered a contender for the title of the archetypal Renaissance man, along with his rival, the fellow Florentine and client of the Medici, Leonardo da Vinci.

A number of Michelangelo's works of painting, sculpture and architecture rank among the most famous in existence. His output in these fields was prodigious; given the sheer volume of surviving correspondence, sketches and reminiscences, he is the best-documented artist of the 16th century. He sculpted two of his best-known works, the Pietà and David, before the age of thirty. Despite holding a low opinion of painting, he also created two of the most influential frescoes in the history of Western art: the scenes from Genesis on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome, and The Last Judgment on its altar wall. His design of the Laurentian Library pioneered Mannerist architecture. At the age of 74, he succeeded Antonio da Sangallo the Younger as the architect of St. Peter's Basilica. He transformed the plan so that the western end was finished to his design, as was the dome, with some modification, after his death.

Michelangelo was the first Western artist whose biography was published while he was alive. In fact, two biographies were published during his lifetime. One of them, by Giorgio Vasari, proposed that Michelangelo's work transcended that of any artist living or dead, and was "supreme in not one art alone but in all three".

In his lifetime, Michelangelo was often called Il Divino ("the divine one"). His contemporaries often admired his terribilità—his ability to instil a sense of awe. Attempts by subsequent artists to imitate Michelangelo's impassioned, highly personal style resulted in Mannerism, the next major movement in Western art after the High Renaissance.

Stamps issued to commemorate Michelangelo and his works

Italy 1961 Famous Works of Michelangelo

Italy 1961 Famous Works of Michelangelo

Germany 1975 Head by Michelangelo


France 2003 Michelangelo Painting Sculpture Slaves Naked Man In Museum


Michelangelo's David

Germany Michelangelo's David maximum card

Monaco Michelangelo's David

Germany 1457-58 986 Details from Michelangelo's David Full EUROPA 60

Germany 1457-58 986 Details from Michelangelo's David Full EUROPA 80



1745 Born: Alessandro Volta, Italian physicist, invented the battery (d. 1827)

Alessandro Giuseppe Antonio Anastasio Volta (18 February 1745 – 5 March 1827) was an Italian physicist, chemist, and pioneer of electricity and power who is credited as the inventor of the electric battery and the discoverer of methane. He invented the Voltaic pile in 1799, and reported the results of his experiments in 1800 in a two-part letter to the President of the Royal Society. With this invention Volta proved that electricity could be generated chemically and debunked the prevalent theory that electricity was generated solely by living beings. Volta's invention sparked a great amount of scientific excitement and led others to conduct similar experiments which eventually led to the development of the field of electrochemistry.

Volta also drew admiration from Napoleon Bonaparte for his invention, and was invited to the Institute of France to demonstrate his invention to the members of the Institute. Volta enjoyed a certain amount of closeness with the emperor throughout his life and he was conferred numerous honors by him. Volta held the chair of experimental physics at the University of Pavia for nearly 40 years and was widely idolized by his students.

Despite his professional success, Volta tended to be a person inclined towards domestic life and this was more apparent in his later years. At this time he tended to live secluded from public life and more for the sake of his family until his eventual death in 1827 from a series of illnesses which began in 1823. The SI unit of electric potential is named in his honor as the volt.

1927 Alessandro Volta Italy

Anniversary Alessandro Volta Italy


1861 – With Italian unification almost complete, Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy and Sardinia assumes the title of King of Italy.

Victor Emmanuel II (14 March 1820 – 9 January 1878) was King of Sardinia from 1849 until 17 March 1861, when he assumed the title of King of Italy and became the first king of a united Italy since the 6th century, a title he held until his death in 1878. Borrowing from the old Latin title Pater Patriae of the Roman emperors, the Italians gave him the epithet of Father of the Fatherland (Italian: Padre della Patria).

Born in Turin as the eldest son of Charles Albert, Prince of Carignano, and Maria Theresa of Austria, he fought in the First Italian War of Independence (1848-49) before being made King of Piedmont-Sardinia following his father's abdication. He appointed Camillo Benso, Count of Cavour, as his Prime Minister, and he consolidated his position by suppressing the republican left. In 1855, he sent an expeditionary corps to side with French and British forces during the Crimean War; the deployment of Italian troops to the Crimea, and the gallantry shown by them in the Battle of the Chernaya (16 August 1855) and in the siege of Sevastopol led the Kingdom of Sardinia to be among the participants at the peace conference at the end of the war, where it could address the issue of the Italian unification to other European powers. This allowed Victor Emmanuel to ally himself with Napoleon III, Emperor of France. France had supported Sardinia in the Second Italian War of Independence, resulting in liberating Lombardy from Austrian rule.

Victor Emmanuel supported the Expedition of the Thousand (1860–1861) led by Giuseppe Garibaldi, which resulted in the rapid fall of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies in southern Italy. However, Victor Emmanuel halted Garibaldi when he appeared ready to attack Rome, still under the Papal States, as it was under French protection. In 1860, Tuscany, Modena, Parma and Romagna decided to side with Sardinia-Piedmont, and Victor Emmanuel then marched victoriously in the Marche and Umbria after the victorious battle of Castelfidardo over the Papal forces. He subsequently met Garibaldi at Teano, receiving from him the control of southern Italy and becoming the first King of Italy on 17 March 1861.

In 1866, the Third Italian War of Independence allowed Italy to annex Veneto. In 1870, Victor Emmanuel also took advantage of the Prussian victory over France in the Franco-Prussian War to taking over the Papal States after the French withdrew. He entered Rome on 20 September 1870 and set up the new capital there on 2 July 1871. He died in Rome in 1878, and was buried in the Pantheon.

The Italian national monument Altare della Patria (or Vittoriano) in Rome was built in his honor.

Stamps from Italy depicting Victor Emmanuel II

Italy # 21  - King Victor Emmanuel II

Italy # 31  - King Victor Emmanuel II

Italy Victor Emmanuel II of Italy, King of Italy

Victor Emmanuel II