Tidbits Grand Forks July 31 Issue

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July 31, 2014

Of Grand Forks • East Grand Forks Published by: Wick Publications

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Tidbits is honoring Smithsonian Day on August 10 by bringing you some facts on this institution, home to 137 million artifacts, works of arts, and specimens. • James Smithson was an English chemist, mineralogist, and Oxford graduate who devoted his life to science, authoring 27 published papers on mineralogy. Although he had never even visited the United States, upon his death in 1829, he left his entire estate “to the United States of America, to found at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an Establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.” • Smithson’s bequest was sent to the U.S. in the form of gold sovereigns filling 11 boxes, along with his personal items, scientific papers, minerals, and library. The gold was sent to the U.S. treasury in Philadelphia to be reminted, a total of $508,318.


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• Smithson died and was buried in Italy, and the U.S. consulate in Genoa maintained his grave site there until 1903. That year, famous inventor Alexander Graham Bell, who was a regent for the Smithsonian, traveled to Genoa with his wife to have the body exhumed. WANT TO RUN YOUR OWN BUSINESS? Publish a

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SMITHSONIAN (continued): • Bell and his wife accompanied Smithson’s body across the ocean to the United States, and in January, 1904, the body was escorted through Washington, D.C. by the U.S. Cavalry to Smithson’s final resting place, a crypt on the first floor of the Smithsonian Castle.

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Quiz Bits

4. In the game of Monopoly, what is the name of the square that represents the water utility? 1. Which of the 19 Smithsonian 5. In anatomy, what is the more museums is the largest? common name for the umbilicus? 2. The family of Clayton Moore 6. What 1999 movie with Brad Pitt donated to the Smithsonian a mask featured the tagline “Mischief. and a bullet from what American Mayhem. Soap.”? TV series? 7. The song “Angie” was on which Rolling Stones album? 3. How many volumes are contained 8. What’s the capital of Louisiana? in the Smithsonian’s 20 libraries —1 million, 1.5 million, 2 million, TRIVIA 2.5 million or 3 million?



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• There are 19 different museums and galleries in the Smithsonian complex, including the Air and Space Museum, National Zoological Park, American History Museum, American Indian Museum, National Portrait Gallery, and Natural History Museum. The American History Museum, with over three million artifacts in its collection, contains everything from a piece of Plymouth Rock to the ruby slippers and scarecrow costume from 1939’s The Wizard of Oz. Lewis and Clark’s compass from their 1803 expedition is housed there as well as a section of the first transatlantic telegraph cable, completed in 1866. • In 1920, Harry Burt started the Good Humor Ice Cream Company and operated a fleet of 12 trucks complete with freezers and bells. His salesmen wore crisp white uniforms and were required to tip their hats to all ladies. The Smithsonian is home to a 1938 Chevrolet Good Humor truck, a valuable piece of American history. • In February of 1960, four African-American students sat down at a Greensboro, North Carolina Woolworth’s lunch counter, filling seats vacated by white customers. After being refused service, they stayed in their seats, initiating a peaceful sit-in against racial inequality, and launching a pivotal phase of the civil rights movement. A section of that lunch counter, along with four stools, is a popular landmark in the American History Museum.

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TO CALL 911 If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get him or her to the hospital immediately.

WEST NILE VIRUS RISK FACTORS West Nile virus (WNV) is an infection transmitted by mosquitoes. The mosquito most common for transmitting this virus is one that is widespread throughout the Grand Forks region. This mosquito does not discriminate. People of all ages are susceptible to WNV infection, but the elderly are at higher risk for developing the more severe form of this disease (neuroinvasive illness). Children infected with WNV generally show no symptoms or may have a mild fever.

Repellents: Still One of the Best Ways to Prevent Mosquito Bites Unfortunately, there’s no easy solution to controlling mosquitoes. The more rain and standing water we have, the more mosquito habitat available for those pesky critters. The start of the 2014 mosquito season has been hot and wet thereby producing a healthy hatch of skeeters. Eliminating mosquito breeding sites is essential to keeping the mosquito population in check. When the adult mosquito population seems unbearable, turn to one of the best prevention methods available…a can of OFF! Mosquito repellents with DEET are safe and very effective when applied according to the label. They’ve even improved many of these products so they go on dry, not oily. Don’t let these pesky critters win the outdoor battle this summer. Eliminate any standing water on your property and apply repellents with DEET when outdoors.

Number of Cases

North Dakota - West Nile Virus Cases By Date 2002 - 2013

Weekly Data 2002 - 2013 Total Human Cases in ND - 1,512

Risk factors for West Nile virus: • Time of year – The majority of WNV cases occur from July – September. • Geographic region – The Dakotas have reported some of the highest cases per capita in the United States. • Time spent outdoors not wearing protective clothing and mosquito repellent – If you work or spend a lot of time outdoors (golfing, gardening, hunting, etc.), you’re at a higher risk of being bitten by mosquitoes. • Proximity – If you live in an area where WNV has already been identified or near mosquito larval habitat. • If you have a weakened immune system. The best way to prevent West Nile virus infection is to avoid mosquito bites. • Use mosquito-repellent products containing DEET. • Wear long sleeves and pants. • Eliminate any standing water from your property, such as trash bins, plant saucers, rain gutters, buckets, etc.

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For information about West Nile Virus and the Grand Forks mosquito control program visit our website at www.gfmosquito.com or call the Information Line at 701-787-8144

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SMITHSONIAN (continued): • One of the most popular exhibits in the Smithsonian is the Star-Spangled Banner flag, also called the Great Garrison flag, which flew over Baltimore’s Fort McHenry during the War of 1812. This flag was the inspiration for Francis Scott Key, who penned the now-famous poem “Defense of Fort McHenry,” which was later set to music, becoming the U.S. national anthem. The flag with its 15 stars and 15 stripes was sewn by a Baltimore woman named Mary Pickergill in 1813 for $405.90. After the war, the banner was in the possession of the family of Major George Armistead, the commander of the fort, until 1912, when it was donated to the Smithsonian. It has undergone several restorations, the first in 1914 and the most recent, a long-term restoration begun in 1999. • Pieces from the life of George Washington abound in the Smithsonian, including a wisp of his hair, a brick from his childhood home, a letter hand-written by him in 1785, his uniform from the Revolutionary War, and wood from his coffin. There is also a 12-ton marble statue of the nation’s first president, completed in 1841, sitting atop a granite pedestal. Walk over to the National Portrait Gallery and you can see Gilbert Stuart’s famous painting of Washington, the image we see every day on the dollar bill.

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• The world of sports is well-represented at the Smithsonian with a pair of 1823 roller skates, Muhammad Ali’s boxing gloves, Bobby Orr’s hockey gloves, Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls jersey, and jockey Steve Cauthen’s horse-racing silks. The speed skates worn by Olympic gold medalist Apolo Ohno at the 2002 Winter Olympics, Arthur Ashe’s tennis racket, Roger Staubach’s football jersey, and Hank Aaron’s baseball jersey are all part of the collection of 6,000 sports items.

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4. Between the 1950-51 and 1989-90 NBA seasons, only one regular-season 1. Name the major-league team scoring champ was also on with the longest playoff a championship-winning drought entering the 2014 team. Name him. season. 5. Who was the last player to 2. Which of these Astro teamwin golf’s Masters tournamates led the National League ment in his first appearance in runs scored more times: Jeff there? Bagwell or Craig Biggio? 6. How many Final Fours has 3. The Los Angeles Kings set a the Ohio State men’s basketregular-season team record ball team reached since the in 2013-14 for most shutouts. Buckeye’s last championship How many was it? in 1960?

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• On Aug. 10, 1793, after more than two centuries as a royal palace, the Louvre is opened as a public museum in Paris by the French revolutionary government. The Louvre palace was begun by King Francis I in 1546 on the site of a 12th-century fortress built by King Philip II. Today the Louvre contains artwork and artifacts representative of 11,000 years of human civilization and culture. • On Aug. 6, 1902, Arthur Flegenheimer, who will go on to become one of New York's most feared criminals under the name "Dutch Schultz," is born. Years later, Schultz was one of the biggest gangsters in New York, employing as many as 100 gunmen to enforce his rackets. • On Aug. 4, 1927, the Father of Country Music, Jimmie Rodgers, is recorded for the very first time during the legendary Bristol Sessions. Rodgers cut two test recordings, "The Soldier's Sweetheart" and "Sleep, Baby, Sleep." • On Aug. 8, 1942, six German saboteurs who secretly entered the United States on a mission to attack its infrastructure are executed for spy-

The History Channel

ing. On June 12, the German team had buried explosives Long Island to use later. On July 18, a second team had successfully landed in Florida. • On Aug. 5, 1962, movie actress Marilyn Monroe is found dead in her home in Los Angeles. Empty bottles of prescription pills were littered around the room. An autopsy found a fatal amount of sedatives in her system, and her death was ruled probable suicide. • On Aug. 9, 1974, Gerald R. Ford is sworn in as the 38th president of the United States after the resignation of Richard M. Nixon. After taking the oath of office, Ford spoke in a televised address, declaring, "My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over." • On Aug. 7, 1987, Lynne Cox braves the freezing waters of the Bering Strait to make the first recorded swim from the United States to the Soviet Union. Her training regimen included regularly swimming in water at between 38 and 42 degrees F. Cox rarely swam in a wetsuit regardless of water temperature. © 2014 King Features Synd., Inc.


SMITHSONIAN (continued): • Over 26,000 square feet of the transportation hall are filled with objects chronicling the nation’s travels, including a railroad car from 1836, a 1903 Winton, which was the first car driven across the United States, and a 40-foot section of the famous Route 66. • The green-domed Museum of Natural History opened in 1910, among the first Smithsonian buildings to be constructed. Its area is the size of about 18 football fields and houses fossils, minerals, meteorites, dinosaur skeletons, taxidermy, and sections. The insect exhibit features 30 million creatures pinned into boxes. In the herbarium, 4.5 million plants have been pressed onto sheets of paper. • The legendary Hope Diamond is a 45.52-carat deep blue diamond, famous for a supposed curse upon its owner, allegedly bringing tragedy to all who own it or wear it. It’s believed that King Louis XIV bought the gem in 1668 for his wife Marie Antoinette. The pair were guillotined during the French Revolution. After a series of owners, American heiress Evalyn Walsh McLean brought it to America, and following her death, jeweler Harry Winston bought the diamond. In 1958, Winston chose to donate it to the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, and put the irreplaceable gem in a plain brown wrapper and sent it by registered first-class mail. Insured for $250 million, the Hope Diamond is displayed in its own room behind a 3-inch-thick bulletproof glass. • Eugene Cernan was the last man to walk on the moon on Dec. 14, 1972. The National Air and Space Museum is home to Cernan’s spacesuit, garb that weighed about 185 lbs. on Earth. Visitors to this museum can also see a lunar roving vehicle, Saturn V rockets, Charles Lindbergh memorabilia, and the B-29 Superfortress, the Enola Gay.

Of Grand Forks • East Grand Forks

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JAMES NAISMITH Thanks to Canadian-born James Naismith, the world enjoys the popular sport of basketball. Here’s the lowdown on the origins of this sport and its inventor. • A native of Almonte, Ontario, Naismith studied at Montreal’s McGill University, majoring in physical education. Naismith was a multi-talented athlete, representing his college in football, lacrosse, rugby, soccer, and gymnastics He then earned a diploma from the Presbyterian College in Montreal. Following graduation, he became the physical education teacher at his alma mater McGill University, a post he retained for three years. • In 1890, Naismith made the move across the border to take a position in Massachusetts at Springfield College, which was the international YMCA training school. During the severe New England winters, students became unruly and restless when confined indoors, and in 1891, Naismith’s supervisor gave him two weeks to come up with an indoor activity that would help athletes stay in shape, while reducing their cabin fever and rambunctious behavior. • Naismith devised a game using a soccer ball and two peach baskets as goals, with nine players on each team. He named his new game “Basket Ball,” and went on to establish 13 basic rules. Two years later, the peach baskets were replaced with iron hoops and a hammock-style basket. But it was several years before open-ended nets were used. Prior to that, each time a goal was scored, the ball was manually retrieved from the basket.

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• After five years in Springfield, Naismith moved on, back to his studies, receiving his MD in 1898. He took a teaching position at the University of Kansas, where he founded that institution’s Jayhawks basketball program, and was their coach until 1907. It was not Naismith’s intention to establish their sports program. He had planned to teach physical education and act as the chapel director. To Naismith, basketball was just a game, and he actually preferred wrestling and gymnastics, believing they were better forms of physical activity. • It would be logical to think that a team coached by the inventor of basketball would have an outstanding record. But Naismith was not a competitive type, and he felt the game should be played “for fun and health.” He rarely attended the team’s practices, and his record of 55-60 reflected his lack of interest. He remains the only losing coach in the history of the Kansas basketball team. • Yet Naismith saw his invention thrive as basketball became an Olympic demonstration sport in 1904 in St. Louis. It was made an official event at Berlin’s 1936 Summer Olympics, and the 74-year-old Naismith himself handed out the gold medal to the United States’ team, the silver to Canada, and the bronze medal to Mexico. He remarked that seeing the game played by so many nations was the greatest reward he could have received. Little did he know that the game would go on to be played by 300 million people worldwide today. • Naismith authored two books, A Modern College in 1911 and Essence of a Healthy Life in 1910. He also served for a short time during World War I. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame (officially the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame) in 1959. The facility is located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the site of the game’s invention.

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ROOT BEER Since August 6 is National Root Beer Float Day, it seems like a good time to investigate the origins of this popular beverage. • Root beer was originally a concoction invented by early native Americans using various plant roots, herbs, and berries, with sassafras as the main ingredient. Depending on the formula, a recipe might include flavors of vanilla, licorice root, sarsaparilla root, nutmeg, ginger, maple, acacia, anise, molasses, cinnamon, clove, and honey. In 1960, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration prohibited the use of sassafras oil after determining it has caused cancer and liver damage in laboratory rats. Root beer producers then switched to artificial sassafras flavorings.

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• Hires introduced his beverage to the public at the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition, giving away free samples. In his first year of production, he sold 864 bottles of extract. By 1891, that number was two million. He began selling bottled carbonated root beer two years later.



• If you're planning a trip to Syracuse, N.Y., you might want to take a detour about 35 miles east to the small town of Verona. There you can visit the world's smallest church -- but don't plan to go in and have a seat. Cross Island Chapel is only 6 feet by 3.5 feet. The minister can stand inside, but everyone else has to stay outside. * * * Thought for the Day: "If you can't get rid of the skeleton in your closet, you'd best teach it to dance." -- George Bernard Shaw


some shoes (1,700 pairs) and stationery (1,200 boxes) that she left to the Salvation Army, her entire estate was used to create a trust for the 150 stray dogs she had adopted. The pets lived in luxury, dying of old age one by one, until 1984, when the last one -- the richest dog in the country -also succumbed. The remainder of the inheritance then went to Auburn University.


• It was Flannery O'Connor, noted American writer of novels and short stories, who made the following observation: "Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them." • In Saudi Arabia, there is an entire police unit dedicated solely to the pursuit of crimes of witchcraft. • Lee DeForest, known as the Father of Radio, said in 1926, "While theoretically and technically television may be feasible, commercially and financially I consider it an impossibility, a development of which we need to waste little time dreaming." • Eleanor Ritchey was the granddaughter of Philip John Bayer, founder of Quaker State Oil. She was the sole inheritor of her grandfather's fortune, and she had no children of her own. When she died in 1968 she was worth $12 million. Other than


by Samantha Weaver

• In 1876, Philadelphia pharmacist Charles Hires launched the brewing of root beer as a commercial venture. Hires was on his honeymoon in a New Jersey hotel when the owner served up an herbal “root tea” to which Hires took an immediate liking. He persuaded his hostess to share her recipe of 16 wild roots, which included juniper, wintergreen, sarsaparilla, hops, and pipsissewa. Back in his pharmacy, Hires blended his own formula, offering a 25-cent packet of powder that customers would mix with water, sugar, and yeast, yielding five gallons of root beer. Shortly afterward, he began bottling extract and syrup concentrate for sale to soda fountains, as well as shipping out the beverage in kegs.

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ROOT BEER (continued): • Many pharmacists of Hires’ day believed DEERE. JOHN (continued): that root beer hadDEERE. health benefits, and Hires • himself It was claimed while living in Illinois that John nothat it purified the blood and ticedfor therosy problems made cheeks.that farmers faced when attempting to till soil. Because the area had • Hires believed widely andtheaggressively adformerly beeninwoodland, soil was rich vertising his product, stating, “Doing business with hummus, which clumped and clung to without advertising is likefarmers winking at aaccusgirl in the blades of the plows were the dark. You know what you are doing, but tomed to using. While repairing a broken cirnobody else Deere does!”stumbled upon an idea. He cular saw, his smith skills to fashion the home steel • Inemployed 1919, when soldiers were returning blade into the shape of a plow. He affixed from World War I, a California entrepreneur two wooden spokes, then hitched the device named Roy Allen was looking for a way to to a horse. It plowed the heavy Illinois soil honor them. He mixed up a formula for root like a charm. In fact, a farmer who happened beer heobserving had purchased Arizona pharto be the testfrom run an immediately put macist and sold it on a street corner for a nickin an order for his own John Deere plow. el a mug. The beverage was so popular that • In short order, Deere gave up his blacksmith before long, Allen had expanded to four sites, shop and focused on making plows. The which eventually evolved into drive-ins. In company grew steadily and added many em1925, he one1840s, of hisJohn employees Frank ployees.took In theonlate relocated the Wright as a partner and the pair began offering entire operation to Moline, Illinois. Ashamed franchises under name A&W. Eight of his own lack the of education, John sentyears his later there to were drive-ins. The company children the 170 state’s finest schools. One ofis the franchise restaurant in son the Charles country hisoldest proudest days occurred when and currently has overof1,100 locations in 10 earned the equivalent an MBA from Bell’s Commercial College in Chicago. countries. • With his son Charles managing the company, • A&W continues to honor soldiers on Root JohnFloat foundDay time pursueaway philanthropic Beer bytogiving thousandsin-of terests.The He co-founded both the donations First Nationfloats. company requests on al Bank and the First Congregational Church. that day for the treats, with all proceeds given was elected the mayorWarrior of Moline in 1873, toHebenefit the Wounded Project for where one of his first actions – the replaceinjured service members. Donations topped ment of the city’s open drains with a sewer $100,000 in 2013. pipe system – saved countless lives by reduc-

• Ely Barney Berns teamed up in ingKlapman the spreadand of disease. Klapman’s basement to cre• 1937 The in original John Chicago Deere logo, registered in ate Dad’s Old Fashioned Root Beer, named 1876, depicted a deer that was native to Afri-in honor of Klapman’s in proca. Thirty-six years father. later, inDad’s, 1912,still it was reduction today, was the first product to offer placed with the image of a North Americana six-pack packaging the decades half-gallon white-tailed deer. and In the thatbottle. fol-


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