This Day In History

This Day In History

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

On This Day

Events

in 1863

Two divisions of James...
Two divisions of James B. McPherson's XVII Corps (ACW) turn the left wing of Confederate General John C. Pemberton's defensive line on Fourteen Mile Creek, opening up the interior of Mississippi to the Union Army during the Vicksburg Campaign. The Battle of Raymond was fought on May 12, 1863, near Raymond, Mississippi, during the Vicksburg Campaign of the American Civil War. The bitter fight pitted elements of Union Army Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's Army of the Tennessee against Confederate forces of Lt. Gen. John C. Pemberton's Department of the Mississippi and East Louisiana. The Confederates failed to prevent the Federal troops from reaching the Southern Railroad and isolating Vicksburg, Mississippi, from reinforcement and resupply.
battle, Raymond, American Civil War

Births

in 1842
Jules Massenet

Jules Émile Frédéric Massenet was a French composer best known for his operas. His compositions were very popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and he ranks as one of the greatest melodists of his era. Soon after his death, Massenet's style went out of fashion, and many of his operas fell into almost total oblivion. Apart from Manon and Werther, his works were rarely performed. However, since the mid-1970s, many operas of his such as Thaïs and Esclarmonde have undergone periodic revivals.

Deaths

in 1936
Louis Camille Maillard

Louis Camille Maillard was a French physician and chemist.

Why to study History?

Why to study History? It is a very popular question. Really, why should we learn by heart plenty of dates, names of historical personalities and so on? Especially nowadays when we are surrounded by modern technologies, when science makes much progress day after day and the whole those stories from our past seem to be just unpleasant fairy tales.

One of the Russian historians once said: “History doesn’t teach. It punishes for unlearned lessons”. It isn’t a secret that all the being of human society from ancient times to our days looks like a snake biting its own tale. History is cyclical and every event, every person and every mistake took place one day in the past. The thing is that we should use this knowledge as а diligent student uses his draft. There is no sense in doing the same mistakes our ancestors did. For instance, everyone in the world knows what is hidden beyond Victory Day. Blood, tears and millions of deaths. On this day we must remember not only the fallen in battles of the Second World War soldiers, but the reasons and results of that war. Not a very single person feels happier on this day if he isn’t insane. Because everyone understands that wars don’t bring anything besides grief and death. This is a simple idea that should be driven into the heads of persons who dared to give a Nobel Peace Prize to a man bombing other countries “for the love of global happiness”. And if you didn’t sleep at your History lessons you can easy name a dozen of characters of this kind.

Scientists say that we shouldn’t think of History as of something global only. It seems ridiculous but the History of the world is similar to a life of a man. And it helps us to understand ourselves better. The main lesson of History is to remember that we can’t change our past but we can change our future. This day in history, in history of a man, is for sure a repetition of that day in history of his father or grandfather. Characters of science fiction used to wish a book with the description of the events in future. However, we have such a book. It is a book of History. If you look it through from a different point of view you will understand what a treasure you have got. There is no fate and no magic balls. But a book of History for a sensible person can substitute a camp of soothsayers. Just a little bit of logic and tactic to turn an obscurity into a well-planned future.

Studying History is necessary for everybody. It helps politicians to avoid repeating global misdoings, it teaches businessmen to build their companies hanging upon the experience of their forerunners, it inspires people of art who know better than others how fleeting this day in history is. Even scientists being the most advanced people whose lives depend on their view not upon only this day but upon the whole future can’t work without realizing the most primitive and basic knowledge of yore. Because if you don’t know primitives it’s easy to come down to it.

Studying History isn’t just a mechanic learning by rote what has happened on this day in history or that one. It is rethinking of the whole volume of people’s activity. Without this we would stay mammoth hunters who don’t perceive why their lives goes worse and worse.

They say that those who will throw a stone at the past will be shot with a gun by the future. We live in a technical world, we are surrounded by ultramodern devices and history of ancient days seems to be a too far and insignificant thing to worry about. But when “that day in history” turns suddenly into “this day in history” people understand that it was a mistake to escape from our bygone heritage and leave mistakes behind.

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