This Day In History – November 30th
FIRST EVER INTERNATIONAL FOOTBALL MATCH – NOVEMBER 30, 1872
Scotland v England (1872) was the first ever official international football match to be played. It was contested by the national teams of Scotland and England. The match took place on 30 November 1872 at West of Scotland Cricket Club’s ground at Hamilton Crescent in Partick, Scotland. The match finished in a 0–0 draw and was watched by 4,000 spectators. [Source]
STEAM LOCOMOTIVE FLYING SCOTSMAN BECOMES FIRST TRAIN TO OFFICIALLY EXCEED 100 MPH – NOVEMBER 30, 1934
The LNER Class A3 Pacific locomotive No. 4472 Flying Scotsman (originally No. 1472) was built in 1923 for the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER) at Doncaster Works to a design of H.N. Gresley. It was employed on long-distance express trains on the LNER and its successors, British Railways Eastern and North-Eastern Regions, notably on the 10am London to Edinburgh Flying Scotsman service after which it was named. In its career 4472 Flying Scotsman has covered more than 2,000,000 miles (3,200,000 km).
On 30 November 1934, running a light test train, 4472 became the first steam locomotive to be officially recorded at 100 mph (160.9 km/h) and earned a place in the Land speed record for railed vehicles.
Because of the LNER’s emphasis on using the locomotive for publicity purposes, and then its eventful preservation history, including two international forays, it is arguably one of the most famous locomotives in the world today, and no doubt among the most famous in the UK. One of its first film appearances was in the 1929 film The Flying Scotsman, which featured an entire sequence set aboard the locomotive. [Source]
SOVIET UNION INVADES FINLAND, STARTING THE ‘WINTER WAR’
NOVEMBER 30, 1939
Finnish soldiers, members of one of the ski battalions that fought against invading Russian troops, march with their reindeer on March 28, 1940. (AP Photo)
The Winter War was a military conflict between the Soviet Union and Finland. It began with a Soviet offensive on 30 November 1939 – three months after the start of World War II and the Soviet invasion of Poland – and ended on 13 March 1940 with the Moscow Peace Treaty. The League of Nations deemed the attack illegal and expelled the Soviet Union from the League on 14 December 1939.
The Soviet forces had three times as many soldiers as the Finns, 30 times as many aircraft, and a hundred times as many tanks. The Red Army, however, had been crippled by Soviet leader Joseph Stalin’s Great Purge of 1937, reducing the army’s morale and efficiency shortly before the outbreak of the fighting. With more than 30,000 of its army officers executed or imprisoned, including most of those of the highest ranks, the Red Army in 1939 had many inexperienced senior officers. Because of these factors, and high commitment and morale in the Finnish forces, Finland was able to resist the Soviet invasion for far longer than the Soviets expected.
Hostilities ceased in March 1940 with the signing of the Moscow Peace Treaty. Finland ceded 11% of its pre-war territory and 30% of its economic assets to the Soviet Union. Soviet losses on the front were heavy, and the country’s international reputation suffered. The Soviet forces did not accomplish their objective of the total conquest of Finland, but did gain sufficient territory along Lake Ladoga to provide a buffer for Leningrad. The Finns, however, retained their sovereignty and enhanced their international reputation.
The peace treaty thwarted the Franco-British plan to send troops to Finland through northern Scandinavia. One of the Allied operation’s major goals had been to take control of northern Sweden’s iron ore and cut its deliveries to Germany. Total casualties for Finland are estimated at 70,000 while total casualties for the Soviet Union were estimated at 323,000. [Source]
The winter of 1939-1940 in Finland was exceptionally cold. In January, temperatures dropped below -40° in some places. Frostbite was a constant threat, and the corpses of soldiers killed in battle froze solid, often in eerie poses. This January 31, 1940 photo shows a frozen dead Russian soldier, his face, hands and clothing covered with a dusting of snow. After 105 days, the Finns and Russians signed a peace treaty, allowing Finland to retain sovereignty, while it ceded 11 percent of its territory to the Soviets. (LOC)
MICHAEL JACKSON RELEASES THRILLER, THE BEST-SELLING ALBUM OF ALL TIME – NOVEMBER 30, 1982
Thriller is the sixth studio album by American recording artist Michael Jackson. It was released on November 30, 1982, by Epic Records as the follow-up to Jackson’s critically and commercially successful 1979 album Off the Wall. Thriller explores similar genres to those of Off the Wall, including pop, R&B, rock and post-disco music.
Recording sessions took place between April and November 1982 at Westlake Recording Studios in Los Angeles, California, with a production budget of $750,000, assisted by producer Quincy Jones. Of the nine tracks on the album, 4 of them were written by Jackson himself. Seven singles were released from the album, all of which reached the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100. “Baby Be Mine” and “The Lady in My Life” were the only tracks that were not released as singles. In just over a year, Thriller became—and currently remains—the best-selling album of all time, with 110 million copies sold worldwide, and is also tied for the best-selling album in the United States. The album won a record-breaking eight Grammy Awards at the 1984 Grammys.
Thriller enabled Jackson to break down racial barriers via his appearances on MTV and meeting with President Ronald Reagan at the White House. The album was one of the first to use music videos as successful promotional tools—the videos for “Thriller”, “Billie Jean” and “Beat It” all received regular rotation on MTV.
Thriller ranked number 20 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list in 2003, and was listed by the National Association of Recording Merchandisers at number three in its Definitive 200 Albums of All Time. The Thriller video was preserved by the Library of Congress to the National Recording Registry, as it was deemed “culturally significant”. [Source]
EXXON AND MOBIL MERGE TO BECOME THE LARGEST COMPANY IN THE WORLD – NOVEMBER 30, 1999
Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE: XOM) or ExxonMobil, is an American multinational oil and gas corporation. It is a direct descendant of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil company, and was formed on November 30, 1999, by the merger of Exxon and Mobil. Its headquarters are in Irving, Texas. It is affiliated with Imperial Oil which operates in Canada.
ExxonMobil is one of the largest publicly traded companies by market capitalization in the world, having been ranked either No.1 or No. 2 for the past 5 years. Exxon Mobil’s reserves were 72 billion oil-equivalent barrels at the end of 2007 and, at then (2007) rates of production, are expected to last over 14 years.
With 37 oil refineries in 21 countries constituting a combined daily refining capacity of 6.3 million barrels (1,000,000 m3), Exxon Mobil is the largest refiner in the world, a title that was also associated with Standard Oil since its incorporation in 1870. ExxonMobil is the largest of the six oil supermajors with daily production of 3.921 million BOE (barrels of oil equivalent). In 2008, this was approximately 3% of world production, which is less than several of the largest state-owned petroleum companies. When ranked by oil and gas reserves it is 14th in the world with less than 1% of the total.
In 2010, ExxonMobil had revenues of $383.221 billion with an operating income of $52.959 billion. ExxonMobil’s headquarters are located in Irving, Texas. [Source]
SERIAL KILLER GARY RIDGWAY AKA THE GREEN RIVER KILLER IS ARRESTED – NOVEMBER 30, 2001
Gary Leon Ridgway (born February 18, 1949) is an American serial killer known as the Green River Killer. He murdered numerous women in Washington during the 1980s and 1990s, earning his nickname when the first five victims were found in the Green River. He strangled them, usually with his arm but sometimes using ligatures. After strangling the women, he would dump their bodies throughout forested and overgrown areas in King County.
On November 30, 2001, as he was leaving the Renton, Washington Kenworth Truck factory where he worked, he was arrested for the murders of four women whose cases were linked to him through DNA evidence. As part of a plea bargain wherein he agreed to disclose the whereabouts of still “missing” women, he was spared the death penalty and received a sentence of life imprisonment without parole.
Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, Ridgway is believed to have murdered at least 71 women (according to Ridgway, in an interview with Sheriff Reichert 2001) near Seattle and Tacoma, Washington. His court statements later reported that he had killed so many, he lost count. A majority of the murders occurred between 1982 and 1984. The victims were believed to be either prostitutes or runaways picked up along Pacific Highway South (International Blvd. 99) whom he strangled. Most of their bodies were dumped in wooded areas around the Green River except for two confirmed and another two suspected victims found in the Portland, Oregon area.
Before Ridgway’s confession, authorities had attributed 49 murders to the Green River Killer. As mentioned above, Ridgway confessed to murdering as many as 71 victims. On December 18, 2003, King County Superior Court Judge Richard Jones sentenced Ridgway to 48 life sentences with no possibility of parole and one life sentence, to be served consecutively. He was also sentenced to an additional 10 years for tampering with evidence for each of the 48 victims, adding 480 years to his 48 life sentences. [Source]
JEOPARDY! CONTESTANT KEN JENNINGS’ 74-GAME WIN STREAK COMES TO AN END – NOVEMBER 30, 2004
Ken Jennings (born May 23, 1974) is an American game show contestant and author. Jennings is noted for holding the record for the longest winning streak on the U.S. syndicated game show Jeopardy! and as being the all-time leading money winner on American game shows. In 2004, Jennings won 74 Jeopardy! games before he was defeated by challenger Nancy Zerg on his 75th appearance.
His total earnings on Jeopardy! are $3,172,700, consisting of $2,520,700 over his 74 wins, a $2,000 second-place prize in his 75th appearance, a $500,000 second-place prize in the Jeopardy! Ultimate Tournament of Champions, as well as half of a $300,000 prize in the IBM Challenge.
On November 30, 2004, Jennings’ reign as Jeopardy! champion ended when he lost his seventy-fifth game to challenger Nancy Zerg. Jennings responded incorrectly to both Double Jeopardy! Daily Doubles, causing him to lose a combined $10,200 ($5,400 and $4,800, respectively) and leaving him with $14,400 at the end of the round. As a result, for only the tenth time in 75 games, Jennings did not have an insurmountable lead going into the Final Jeopardy! round. Only Jennings and Zerg, who ended Double Jeopardy! with $10,000, were able to play Final Jeopardy! as third-place contestant David Hankins failed to finish with a positive score after Double Jeopardy!.
The Final Jeopardy! category was Business & Industry, and the answer was “Most of this firm’s 70,000 seasonal white-collar employees work only four months a year”. Zerg responded correctly with “What is H&R Block?” and wagered $4,401 of her $10,000, giving her a $1 lead over Jennings with his response still to be revealed. Jennings incorrectly responded with “What is FedEx?”, and lost the game with a final score of $8,799 after his $5,601 wager was deducted from his score. He was awarded $2,000 for his second place finish, which gave him a final total of $2,522,700 for his run on Jeopardy!. Zerg, whom Jennings called a “formidable opponent,” finished in third place on the next show. [Source]