Presidential Wit: Abraham Lincoln

Lead: Of the weapons available to the politician, among the most powerful is humor. No one was better at wielding that weapon than Abraham Lincoln.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Few politicians can survive if they become an object of laughter and ridicule. On the other hand, those seeking office who have the ability to use humor as a weapon against opponents or as a means of giving themselves a more sympathetic and down-to-earth image, go a long way to winning the support and perhaps the affection of the electorate. A sense of humor is not required for election, but it helps, both to soften the blow of losing or, even better, to keep political success in correct perspective.

The Sultan of Swat: Babe Ruth II

Lead: The experts said Babe Ruth was finished, a has-been, long past his prime. At Wrigley Field one fine fall afternoon, he showed them he had a little left after all.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: After two decades of baseball and six years of unparalleled and record-setting play, Babe Ruth was beginning to slow down. Despite his 50 homers average per year from 1926-1931, serious questions were being raised about his ability to continue at such a pace. His personal life had largely calmed down after his second marriage in 1929 but time was beginning to take its toll for the New York Yankee slugger.

The Sultan of Swat: Babe Ruth I

Lead: Into the game of baseball, darkened by scandal, was breathed a burst of fresh air by a big, hard-driving, hard-hitting man known by the name Babe.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: George Herman Ruth, Jr. was born the son of a saloon keeper in Baltimore, 1895. Even as a child he was loud and brash and pushy and most people liked him. His internal energy drove him to constant activity which in turn was invariably getting him into trouble. He played hooky from school, drank beer and whiskey lifted from his father's bar, and was such trouble that his parents finally sent him to St. Mary's School, part industrial training institute, part reform school for boys in trouble.


Mt. Pelee II

Lead: During its deadly destruction of the Martinique port city of St. Pierre, Mt. Pelée threw up an unusual form of volcanic eruption, the nuée ardente, or glowing cloud.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Volcanoes come in different forms. Their shape is determined by a variety of factors: the amount, sequence, and contents of what comes out during an eruption and the nature of the vent and land through which it pushes its volcanic product called magma. The perfectly shaped volcanoes such as Mt. Fuji in Japan are called stratovolcanoes because in most cases, over a long period of time, they generate moderate eruptions of ash and lava which are then deposited in layers or strata. Mt. Pelée, a stratavolcano, towers 4500 feet above the northern end of the Caribbean Island of Martinique.

Mt. Pelee I

Lead: On the morning of May 8, 1902, a massive cloud of volcanic matter rolled out of the conical summit of Mt. Pelée and plunged toward the coastal city of St. Pierre on the Caribbean island of Martinique. Within minutes the 30,000 citizens of St. Pierre had been incinerated.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Visited by Columbus on his fourth voyage in 1502, Martinique was first settled by Europeans when the French established a colony there in 1635. Except for a few years during wartime, they retained control and French Martinique remains in the twenty-first century. The island was formed by volcanoes, the principal of which was Mt. Pelée, a stratovolcano towering 4500 feet above the northern end of the Island. Until 1902 the chief commercial center of Martinique was the port of St. Pierre three miles distant from Mt. Pelée.

Aerial Refueling


Lead: Almost from the beginning of powered flight, aviators recognized that one of the major problems they faced was having enough fuel to keep aircraft aloft for extended time and distance. They solved this with aerial refueling.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: On June 27, 1923 two U.S. Army Air Service planes accomplished the first mid-air refueling. Two months later, with two tankers attending, a DH-4B Army biplane set a world-wide endurance record remaining in the air for 37 hours. Experiments continued on both sides of the Atlantic with the United States desiring to enhance postal service to Europe and the British seeking to extend the range of their flying boats to the far reaches of the Empire.

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The Lincoln and Grant Meeting

The climactic events leading to the collapse of the Confederacy began on April 1, 1865 when Union forces defeated the two divisions of General George Pickett at the Battle of Five Forks. Lee could no longer hold Petersburg or stop the Yankees from cutting the Southside railroad. It was time for a breakthrough and General Grant seized the moment in a series of coordinated attacks that broke the siege and put Union troops into Petersburg proper.
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The Snows of Canossa

Lead: When Cardinal Hildebrand became pope in the year 1073, he took the name Gregory VII. He was a stubborn man and probably more than the average pope enjoyed the role the church claimed for him as God's representative on earth.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Once he came to office he began to attack the practice of lay investiture. When a bishop took office he was invested or given the symbols of that office, usually a ring or staff, by the king or duke who controlled the area in which he would serve. Gregory wanted to stop that, he felt that only Churchmen should invest Churchmen with these symbols of office. In February 1075, the pope decreed that clerics who accepted investiture from laymen were to be thrown out of office and laymen who invested clerics were to be thrown out of the church.