The person who initially was most active in opposing the celebration of Mother’s Day is the very person who started this holiday in the US.

How did that happen?

Anna Jarvis’ mother died in 1905 and in her honor, Anna held a memorial in 1908 in Grafton, West Virginia. She continued to campaign for national recognition of this day for all mothers through the assistance of John Wanamaker and the efforts of Bethany Temple Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia. The first state to recognize Mother’s Day was her own West Virginia in 1910.


Seventy-six years ago today, World War II ended in Europe with the acceptance by the Allies of unconditional surrender from Germany on V-E Day.

Or did it?

May 7, 1945 V-E Day


May 4th or May the Fourth is a geek holiday that has gained popularity in recent years due to a popular film franchise. But where did it begin?

History of May the Fourth

“May the Fourth” is taken from the benediction “May the Force be with you” made famous in the Star Wars film series. This pun intended holiday seems to have first been celebrated in the Toronto Underground Cinema in 2011. However, the use of this phrase predates this, going back to the day in 1979 when Margaret Thatcher, Britain’s first woman prime minister was elected. The Conservative party, upon the occasion of her…


Churches around the world celebrated a quadricentennial, plus 10:

410 years ago marked the publishing, at the request of the Anglican clergy, of what would become the Authorized Version of the Bible, to wide acclaim.

But there are 3 problems with that statement.

While it is true that the King James Bible was published in 1611 and eventually became the most influential Bible in the English-speaking world — if not the most printed book of all time.

  1. It was not requested by the Anglican clergy, at least not by the conformist Episcopalian ministers.
  2. Nor did it subsequently become officially Authorized…

May Day is many things to many people. Etymologically, it is a homophone (same sounding word) for the international call for help. It is a corruption of the French imperative “M’aidez,” meaning “Help me!” It is a holiday claimed by many.

May Day as a Pagan Holiday

It is known in the pagan world as Beltane, a fertility celebration, one of the four high holidays in the pagan and neo-pagan calendar; Samhain on October 31 is another. Beltane is the day of fire commemorating Bel or Belenos, the Celtic sun god. Indeed, in the modern Irish language, Bealtaine is the name for May.


Dachau Liberation

I remember what my father had told me of his involvement in the liberation of Dachau, shortly before he died in 1976. Some of his war buddies discovered the tribute site I’d created for him and called or emailed me to recount stories I’d not known previously, or only in part.

In 2001 before HBO premiered their miniseries Band of Brothers, they asked for historical background for their website to introduce each episode. My father’s story was featured on their website to introduce Episode 9, “Why We Fight,” when Easy Company liberated one of the Dachau sub-camps.

Over the two…


St Mark

Mark the Evangelist is the author of the earliest written gospel, the Gospel of Mark, which appeared within about 30 years of the crucifixion of Jesus in the late AD ’60s. His feast day is April 25 for Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches. He is significant historically both as the writer of the earliest Gospel and as the patron saint of Venice.

Which Mark?

The name Mark also appears elsewhere in the New Testament. One is John Mark, mentioned in The Book of Acts chapters 12, 13, and 15. The Pauline epistles of Colossians and Philemon mentions Mark as the cousin of…


Saint George’s Day is April 23, likely the day of his martyrdom. He is often depicted as a knight in armor. He is the patron saint of England, and his day has been celebrated there from the 9th century and more recently throughout the British Commonwealth… though he was not English, and never visited England.

Origin of St George

He was born in the 3rd century in Cappadocia, modern-day Turkey, and died in Lydda, or modern-day Israel, in what would have been the ancient Roman province of Palestine in AD 303, and would have been a Roman officer.

His story was brought back from…


April 22 is called Earth Day because it both commemorates and celebrates the observance of the anniversary of our discovery of planet Earth. At this time, by all accounts, there is general agreement that Earth is far superior to the planet from which we came, as we shall recount below. Meanwhile, several companies on Earth celebrate it as a holiday, as mine does, or draw significant attention to it with feats of Interweb and mobile legerdemain.

Bill Petro

Writer and technologist. Author of fascinating articles about history, tech trends, and pop culture. billpetro.com @billpetro

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