S-56 was a Stalinets-class submarine of the Voyenno-morskoy flot SSSR (Военно-морской флот СССР), ‘Military Maritime Fleet of the USSR’) — the naval arm of the Soviet Armed Forces — known as the Soviet Navy or the Red Fleet in English. She was laid down by Shipyard #194 in Leningrad on November 24, 1936, and then shipped in sections by rail to Vladivostok where it was reassembled … Continue reading Soviet Submarine S-56
On May 22, 1819, an American hybrid sailing ship/sidewheel steamer built the year before called S.S. Savannah, departed on a voyage during which she became the first steamship to cross the Atlantic Ocean, transiting mainly under sail power from May to June 1819. In spite of this historic voyage, the great space taken up by her large engine and its fuel at the expense of … Continue reading S.S. Savannah
At 10:22 PM local time on Saturday, May 21, 1927, Charles Augustus Lindbergh landed his Ryan single-engine monoplane Spirit of St. Louis on the ground at Aérodrome de Le Bourget in Paris, France, completing the first solo, non-stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean. He had begun his journey 33 hours, 30 minutes and 29.8 seconds before — lifting his aircraft from the muddy runway of Roosevelt Airfield … Continue reading Lindbergh Takes Europe by Storm
At 7:52 on the rainy morning of May 20, 1927, a 25-year-old former U.S. Air Mail pilot with the nickname of Slim taxied his single-engine Ryan monoplane, Spirit of St. Louis, down the muddy runway at Roosevelt Airfield near Garden City on Long Island, New York. Taking off in relative obscurity, 33 hours, 30 minutes later Charles Augustus Lindbergh landed at Aéroport Le Bourget in … Continue reading Lucky Lindy Flies the Atlantic!
One of the reasons that I love collecting stamps so much is that I learn quite a lot about people, places and events I previously had no knowledge of. The hobby has stimulated my love for history and has enabled me to become quite an expert at geography. It all starts with curiosity: what is on my stamp? Where is it? The quest for those … Continue reading Lake Naivasha, Kenya
Every year from April until June, the skies over the vast northeastern region of Thailand known as Isan fills with the smoke of rockets rising up over the rice fields. The rockets range from the traditional cylindrical missiles to rotating contraptions that are as dangerous as they look. Welcome to the annual Bun Bang Fai Festival (ประเพณีบุญบั้งไฟ — Prapheni Bun Bang Fai), where the superstition of … Continue reading Thailand’s Bun Bang Fai Festival of Rockets
To most people, the post horn is an antique object rarely encountered. To most stamp collectors, it is a design element most often found gracing older stamps or within the modernized logos of many postal services around the world. If certain specialized philatelists, the post horn represents a lifetime of collecting pleasure. When I was a budding collector in rural Tennessee circa 1974-1975, I was … Continue reading The Post Horn
Riding the local version of a bus (called a songtesaw, meaning “three seats”) to work today, I decided I wanted to write a “random stamp day” article about giraffes. I felt it would be an “easy” topic compared with the recent marathons involved putting together the articles on Jamestown (more than 11,000 words) and Air Mail/Inverted Jenny (almost 6200 words). I need to do a few … Continue reading The Giraffe