June 26

In 1948, The New Yorker published The Lottery by Shirley Jackson. It ranks as one of the most famous short stories in American literature. Initial public response included cancellation of subscriptions and hate mail. The Lottery was even banned in the Union of South Africa. The basic story line is that in a small farming community, someone is sacrificed if they are chosen in the lottery. Tradition has it that killing this person by stoning helps to ensure a good harvest by providing rainfall. The short story has been used in middle and high schools across the nation since it publication.

The St. Lawrence Seaway project was completed and opened to traffic in 1959. The system is 370 miles long, and using a system of locks, canals, channels, and the St. Lawrence River, it allows for the passage of ocean-going vessels to penetrate into the Great Lakes. To get into Lake Erie from Lake Ontario, ships use the Welland Canal. Ships with a maximum beam of 78 feet may use the system. The cost was C$470 million at the time and made the Erie Canal obsolete.

In 1963, President John F. Kennedy gave his famous “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech to show the support of the United States for the German people. The speech occurred 22 months after the Berlin Wall was erected to stop migration into West Germany and West Berlin. The message was designed to send a message to the Soviet Union as well. The speech is considered to be one of Kennedy’s best and was a morale booster for the people of West Berlin. Yes, the “jelly doughnut” misconception lives on. While a Berliner can be a jelly doughnut, since Kennedy was not literally from Berlin but only declaring his solidarity with its citizens, "Ich bin ein Berliner" was not only correct, but the only way to express what the President wanted to say.”

Birthdays Today

1904Peter Lorre, Slovak-American actor (d. 1964)
1908Salvador Allende, Chilean physician and politician, 29th President of Chile (d. 1973)
1909Colonel Tom Parker, Dutch-American talent manager (d. 1997)
1911Babe Didrikson Zaharias, American basketball player and golfer (d. 1956)
1961Greg LeMond, American cyclist

Larry Moskal began his career as a Social Studies teacher in 1971. He graduated from the University of Buffalo with degrees in history and education. Larry taught Social Studies for the Ken-Ton School system, a suburban school system north of Buffalo, New York until 2005, and then taught and was the Dean of Students at San Miguel High School in Tucson. At Ken-Ton, he pioneered several online courses for high school students. In the 1980s, he spent three years teaching in Colombia, South America and spent four years at Lewiston-Porter High School. He currently is the PowerSchool Administrator for San Miguel accomplishing his work over the Internet.