1963 – “I Want to Hold Your Hand” released by the Beatles

Selling over a million in the UK before it was even released, “I Want To Hold Your Hand” is the best-selling single worldwide in the Beatles’ entire career. More than any other, it’s the song that broke them in the United States – the opening shot of the entire British Invasion.

It was number one on the United States at the time that the band made their legendary appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show” – although it was not one of the three songs that they played that night. The song immensely impressed Bob Dylan with its innovative character, and he became a staunch supporter of the band, and later a friend to them.

Referenced in:

Life in a Northern Town — The Dream Academy

1864 – The Sand Creek Massacre takes place

The Sand Creek Massacre (which is also known variously as the Chivington Massacre, the Battle of Sand Creek and the Massacre of Cheyenne Indians) took place when 700 men of the Colorado Territory militia attacked and destroyed a village of Cheyenne and Arapaho encamped in southeastern Colorado Territory near Sand Creek.

133 Cheyenne and Arapaho men, women, and children at Sand Creek were killed, while 24 of the attackers were killed (and 52 more wounded). The event intensified the bloodshed of the Indian Wars, as the Arapho, and particularly the Cheyenne, sought vengeance over the next few years.

Referenced in:

Banner Year — Five Iron Frenzy

1947 — Palestine is partitioned by the United Nations

In 1947, in the wake of the Holocaust, moves were afoot to restore the Jewish homeland in what was then called Palestine, and governed by the United Kingdom under a League of Nations mandate. A plan for the partition of Palestine was developed by the League’s successor, the United Nations, dividing it into Jewish zones and Arab zones.

The plan was doomed to failure from the outset: it satisfied neither side, and once the State of Israel was formed, it rapidly overran the boundaries set out for it in the U.N. plan. More than 50 years later, the question of who owns the land – the Israelis (Jews) or the Palestinians (Arabs) – is still a contentious issue, with a huge loss of life on both sides that continues to this day.

Referenced in:

Earth Song — Michael Jackson