Tag Archives: history

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Beatrix Potter in Cornwall

“Down the wooded lanes, around the twisting of the Helford Creek. Between the bank smothered in primroses, up again along a steep hill with the sun slanting through the blackthorns, passed a great old walled farm with high closed gateway, and a white cat basking in the sunset at a barn door high up in the wall. Then a fine view of brilliant sea, and back into Falmouth past the Swan Pool.” – Beatrix Potter, March 1892.

The famous children’s writer Beatrix Potter first visited Cornwall for an Easter holiday with her family in March 1892. Miss. Potter recorded all her observations from their visit – the places, people and wildlife – in her coded journal. This diary, which Beatrix kept between the ages of 15 and 30, was written in a code of her own invention. And that code was finally cracked by Leslie Linder in the 1960s. The following extracts about the Potter’s time in Cornwall are taken from Linder’s transcription.

Beatrix Potter

At the time of Beatrix Potter’s first holiday in Cornwall she was just 26 years old and still unknown. It was a sunny spring day when the family arrived by train onto the platform of Falmouth station. In fact, the weather that year had been unseasonably warm and dry and the Potters had sunshine every day of their twelve day visit.

Beatrix’s writing show that she was quickly captivated by the hustle and bustle of the busy town of Falmouth and the beauty of the surrounding countryside.

“The spring growth is far more advanced here, green leaves burst on Hawthorn and some Sycamores, where in London are bare sticks . . . we never before had such a glory for weather, cloudless days, burning sun and the air so pure that it transmits every smell within twenty yards, from wall-flowers to fish and manure.”

During their holiday the Potter family took a horse and cart with a local driver to many of Cornwall’s most popular tourist spots. They spent days out on the Lizard and at Land’s End, visited the numerous formal gardens in the area, as well as hunting for cowrie shells on Castle Beach. The long drive to the Lizard “took place as usual in cloudless sunshine” and Potter comments that the dust coating the hedges made them look as if they were “powdered with snow”.

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Source: The Cornish Bird

Original publication 20 October 2019

Posted on NatCorn 29th October 2019

Reference to an article does not infer endorsement of any views expressed.

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How nudist vegans sparked a jazz classic … and a movement

The Richters promoted healthy living and nudism from the comfort of their ahead-of-its-time restaurant.

Mrs. Richter’s cookbook isn’t just about food. For Beauty Salad I, she recommends tender asparagus tips with mint sauce, not because it tastes good but because it will “induce light perspiration, aiding circulation and clearing the complexion.” In fact, all of Vera Richter’s recipes were about a way of life. “Food is the answer to our problem to have a sound mind in a sound body,” she wrote in the cookbook’s opening. She was one of the essential figures of the Los Angeles healthy living scene, opening a chain of famous raw vegan restaurants alongside her husband, John T. Richter.

They might have fit the perfect hippie image, only this was 50 years before the word entered the lexicon. But even the earliest hippies would be influenced by the Richters and their desire to promote the tenants of the German Lebensreform movement.

John and Vera Richter
John and Vera Richter

Vera was born Verna May Weitzel to German parents in Pennsylvania. In 1903, at age 18, she graduated from the Butler Business College and accepted a job as a stenographer in Pittsburgh. By 1910, she’d moved to Los Angeles, where she met John. John had arrived in LA after working as a doctor of chiropractic and naturopathic medicine in the Midwest. They married, and perhaps it was Vera’s business acumen that got their restaurant, Eutropheon, started. However, it was John’s commitment to the ideas of Lebensreform, or life reform, that inspired the raw vegan cuisine they served.

John’s father, a German immigrant and pharmacist, had wanted him to be a doctor, but while studying at Rush Medical College in Chicago, John became more interested in natural methods of healing, including movement cures and the Battle Creek diet, a cooked vegetarian regime developed by John Harvey Kellogg to promote energy and general well-being. John saw great results with patients and even followed the diet himself, but he still felt a “general lack of energy.” That was when he learned about Dr. Benedict Lust and his uncooked food diet in a naturopathic magazine.

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Source: Ozy

Original publication 13 October, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 16th October 2019

Reference to an article does not infer endorsement of any views expressed.

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Wife selling in Cornwall

Would it surprise you to learn that the practice of wife selling was particularly popular in the 17th century? Divorce was almost impossible for anyone but the very rich and as a consequence some husbands sort rather a interesting alternative solution. This bizarre practice was apparently more common in rural counties such as Cornwall and Devon. Indeed folklorist Sabine Baring-Gould dedicated a whole chapter to wife selling in his book Devonshire Characters and Strange Events .

Sale of a wife in Smithfield Market an ancient picture

‘There is no myth relative to the manners and customs of the English that in my experience is more tenaciously held by the ordinary Frenchman than that the sale of a wife in the market place is an habitual and an accepted fact in English Life.’ SBG, 1908

The practice of selling your wife was never legal, or indeed morally acceptable, but it is clear that these transactions did occur. And not on such an irregular basis that they can be brushed under the carpet as a rare social anomaly. My own research has uncovered a number of fascinating cases in Cornwall’s history. Cases when Cornish men took their wives to market, not to do the shopping but as the produce!

Given that the practice wasn’t ever legal the sale of a wife had a number of surprisingly well established rituals.

Usually an announcement of the intended auction would be spread either by word of mouth, printed on posters or even in the local press. The husband might advertise his wife’s positive attributes, her abilities as a cook or as a farm-worker perhaps. On the appointed day the husband would parade his wife, usually at a marketplace. The lady was traditionally haltered with a leather strap at the neck, arm or waist. Then the wife was simply sold to the highest bidder. Sometimes a written contract was exchanged as proof of the transaction. Often the deal was completed with just the handing over of the money and a handshake.

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Source: The Cornish Bird

Original publication 8 October 2019

Posted on NatCorn 10th October 2019

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The Yorkshire naturist club and why we shouldn’t be embarrassed by our bodies
I was three miles north of Hull, watching an unusually large rabbit mosey across the grass, when a smiling naked pensioner emerged from the trees. It had been at least a decade since I’d seen another man in the buff and I was immediately overcome with the urge to apologise to him profusely before running away.

Quite where to run to, though, on a gated 26-acre naturist’s site, with a high fence running round it, I couldn’t decide, so I shook his hand and said something nice about the weather.

Desmond – not his real name – has been a member of the Yorkshire Sun Society since 2003. He told me that prior to that he used to wander naked across the Yorkshire Moors with his wife but with the advent of the camera phone, he started to worry that an encounter with somebody unsympathetic to the cause, might lead to trouble.

Naturist woman plays with a small dog with a stick

Founded in 1932, by a local couple called George and Wendy, the Yorkshire Sun Society is Britain’s second oldest naturist reserve. In the pavilion, pinned up on a wall is a grainy photo of Wendy perched demurely on a tree stump with George smiling proudly at her side.

Surrounding them in a collage are other black and white snapshots of a bygone naked Britain. In one photograph, a pair of young women are planting vegetables on the Sun Society site with the caption ‘dig for victory’ above it, and in another, two small children play in a tin bathtub while their smiling parents look on.

The lithe athletic figures in those old photos contrast starkly with the older membership today. Over a cup of tea, the current Membership Secretary, Mo, explained to me, with a smile, that they certainly don’t expect people to have perfect bodies.

“If you were here at the weekend,” she continued, “when the club’s much busier you would see there isn’t really anyone with a perfect body.”

As we finished our tea, Mo recalled that her life before naturism was one long worry about her “bum looking big”. It was only when she found the movement, and started spending time being naked among others, that she came to accept herself.

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Source: The Yorkshire Post

Original publication 27 September 2019

Posted on NatCorn 3rd October 2019

Reference to an article does not infer endorsement of any views expressed.

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What can and cannot be done where social nudism is allowed.
If you have not already done so, you should familiarize yourself with the concept of Freikörperkultur (FKK) in Germany. This list should help you get started. · The Freikörperkultur (FKK), or free-body cultivation, in Germany is widespread, as can be very tempting in the summer months.

A survey conducted by the German holiday web site. in 2019 he found that the vast majority (60 percent) of Germans said he was totally at ease that people were partially or completely naked on the beach or anywhere.

And 40 percent said they would even support their colleagues to come to work naked.

But what should you know if you want to participate in the FKK experience, or avoid it altogether? Here are some tips:
Do: Understand the story.
The acceptance of public nudity dates back to the history of Germany, which could help explain why the Germans still cling to it.

The first FKK club was founded in Essen in 1898, and the first nudist beach was opened on the island of Sylt, in the North Sea, in 1920. The Nazis took strong action against naked baths and nudist associations, although they eventually relaxed Bans of naked bath in remote areas.

After the war, the German Association for Free Body Culture (DFK) was established in 1949 in Hannover, in West Germany, but the culture was more prominent in the East, where people were more secular. Therefore, it is even more likely to observe the movement today in the eastern states than in the west.

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Source: ANAPA

Original publication September 9, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 21st September 2019

Reference to an article does not infer endorsement of any views expressed.

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Being Naked and Unashamed
Funny–our realtor did not point out the nudist camp around the corner from our new house when we were getting ready to sign the papers. Location, location.

Lake o’the Woods dates from the 1933 when a group of Chicago-based investors settled their club on a parcel of farmland and marshy woods they bought in Valparaiso, Indiana, around some small, attractive lakes. Proud to be the second oldest nudist club in the US, the camp “advocates social and recreational outdoor nudity as a good-health (gesundheit!) practice,” laying claim to Freikörperkultur, or Free Body Culture (FKK) principles. It’s a rustic place, offering family-friendly “non-sexual social nudity.” Its posted sign greets guests: “Welcome All Ye Who Seek Sunshine and Rest for Here They Are Abundant.”

Nudists, naturists, FKK-adherents, as they might variously choose names, claim that the human form is not by itself sexually provocative as it becomes when framed, say, by teeny bikinis or high hemlines. They contrast themselves to “textiles,” those of us who prefer to cover bodies with cloth. As Brian Hoffman explains in his book, Naked, American nudist culture finds its roots in the inspiration of German immigrants.

Part of a more general movement in search of health and spiritual regeneration against the backdrop of urbanization and industrial life, late-nineteenth-century Germans dubbed their movement Freikörperkultur. FKK sought release from the constrained, artificial, and stratified, seeking instead connection with nature and with other human beings, sunshine on bare skin, fresh air, and vigorous exercise. A recent New York Times article by Katrin Bennhold analyzing public nudity in Germany (“A Very German Idea of Freedom: Nude Ping-Pong,” etc.) observes that Germans embrace nudity as a kind of freedom. Believe in it? I’ve seen it done: waders in a Black Forest stream casually leaving their clothes behind on the grassy bank, families wriggling back into sturdy cotton underwear after a splash in the park sprinkler. In FKK and other conceptions, freedom might be found by abandoning cloth; class differences, shed with jacket and petticoat and undergarment, were to become virtually invisible.

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Source: patheos.com

Original publication September 9, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 20th September 2019

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There are fewer and fewer nudists and that is why we sexualize any body we see
It is clear that the impact of hippies on popular culture half a century ago has virtually disappeared but we have to understand the impact this has on our way of looking

There are many reasons, but the reality is that we increasingly like to undress and see naked people . One of the factors is social networks, which prohibit all content related to the natural body. Another, that it is very difficult to be in a place without cameras and not everyone is willing to record it in balls without their consent. Another one may be the return of conservative ideas that seemed surpassed.

Woodstock crowds

There are many causes, but the statistics speak clearly: the vast majority of nudists in Spain are older and have been practicing it for more than 20 years, while in the last two years very few people have started in practice, according to an organization survey Jan-naturism . In addition, only 11% of the nudist respondents were women, which shows an added problem, that women feel uncomfortable in a public space where it is increasingly flagrant that the female body is not respected.

“Nudism, as many studies have shown, is a social construction,” explains Guy Trebay in an article in the New York Times where he analyzes why in recent years it has become so difficult to see naked people in public spaces. The impact of hippies on popular culture half a century ago (Woodstock just turned 50 this summer) has practically disappeared, but we also have to be clear about the impact this has on our way of looking.

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Source: ANAPA

Original publication SEPTEMBER 3, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 19th September 2019

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A nudist camp near the Quad Cities has long been an open secret. Not anymore
Blue Lake Resort in Illinois has about 200 members

Deep in the naked prairies of the heartland, hidden in the rolling cornfields of rural Illinois, there’s a place of local legend.

If you stumble upon it, you’ll find everyday Americans. Midwesterners and coastals. Lawyers and truck drivers. Farmers and nurses. The elderly and the very young.

“We’re no different than everyone else,” resident Irma Huebner said. “We just like to have our clothes off.”

Irma Huebner, one of the owners of the nudist resort in Erie, Illinois, mows her yard Aug. 15 at Blue Lake Resort.
Irma Huebner, one of the owners of the nudist resort in Erie, Illinois, mows her yard Aug. 15 at Blue Lake Resort. Jessica Gallagher/Quad-City Times

At Blue Lake Resort, a nudist campground in Erie, nudism is a tradition and way of life.

The member-based park is a summer getaway for outdoor recreation and a secret refuge from the rigidities of modern life. It’s a place for personal liberation, a perfect spot for sunbathing, a one-time stop on a whim or a dare.

But Blue Lake isn’t a sex colony, a peep show or an outdoor orgy. It’s family-friendly, and there are rules.

“We don’t tolerate any lewd behavior or behavior that makes people feel uncomfortable,” explained Chuck Jester, the resort’s general manager. “There’s a lot of people who think nudism and sex are the same. They’re not.”

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Source: The Gazette

Original publication September 02, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 16th September 2019

Reference to an article does not infer endorsement of any views expressed.

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The infamous male nudist spot on the Hoe – where women were banned
It was no longer maintained after protests from women seeking equality

The Hoe is full of surprises. There are always nooks and crannies to discover.

On a hot, sunny day, it’s the perfect place to go for a sunbathe and a dip in the sea.

Centuries ago the headland – known as The Hoe – was used by Plymouth residents for walks, picnics and sunbathing and in 1588 it is famously claimed Sir Francis Drake played a game of bowls there while awaiting the arrival of the Spanish Armada.

As the years went by, more ‘formal’ walks and pretty gardens were created on the waterfront and the area was generally spruced up, though still heavily dominated by military personell.

The Lion's Den was a male bathing facility where men could go au naturelle
The Lion’s Den was a male bathing facility where men could go au naturelle Sarah Waddington

By 1859 features included the camera obscura, a navigation obelisk and a bathing house on the foreshore, Historic England says.

“In 1860 the practise of grazing The Hoe with sheep was discontinued, and the area became known as Hoe Park,” Historic England writes.

A drinking fountain followed, as well as a pier, Smeaton’s Tower, public monuments, a bandstand and the Belvedere – many of which are still there today. You can find out about how a lighthouse ended up on the Hoe here.

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Source: Plymouth Herald

Original publication 1 SEP 2019

Posted on NatCorn 14th September 2019

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Henleaze Lake: Nude swimming, high diving and romance remembered
The history of a wild swimming club, hidden in the heart of Bristol’s suburbia, has been published to mark its 100th year.

Henleaze Swimming Club was set up in a flooded quarry in 1919 following a spate of drownings the year before.

Alumni include actor David Prowse who played Darth Vader in Star Wars.

“It’s surprising how many people who’ve lived in Bristol all their lives don’t know about it,” said Janet Cocks, 87, whose parents were founder members.

Janet Cocks still swims at the lake more than 80 years after first going there
Janet Cocks still swims at the lake more than 80 years after first going there JANET COCKS

Photographs of Mrs Cocks as a child and today feature in the new book The Lake by Susie Parr.

Mrs Parr joined the club in the 1980s when it was keen for new members. Today the waiting list to join is three years long, adding to its exclusivity.

Mrs Parr is one of a group of about 200 members who enjoy swimming in the lake in winter.

“It’s not everybody’s cup of tea and yes it’s a shock when you get in but when you get out you feel fantastic,” she said.

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Source: BBC

Original publication 17 August 2019

Posted on NatCorn 1st September 2019

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Canada’s oldest nudist club celebrating 80 years of clothing-free fun
The VanTan club was the first of its kind when it opened in 1939

Canada’s oldest nudist club, the VanTan Club, celebrates its 80th anniversary this Saturday, Aug.10.

Founded in 1939, the club was the first of its kind to open in Vancouver, as well as the country. During the club’s inception, not many people had cars, and, as a result, they’d arrive to the club’s property by bus or on foot.

The VanTan Club celebrates its 80th anniversary this Saturday.
The VanTan Club celebrates its 80th anniversary this Saturday. Van Tan Nudist Club

Nowadays, the club meets at a North Vancouver property, but they no longer have a clubhouse. However, the property offers, “a wood-fired sauna and hot tub, facilities for volleyball, badminton, horseshoes, shuffleboard, croquet, bocci, children’s play equipment, spacious lawns for sunning, and lots of shade trees.”

Prospective members must visit the property up to three times to determine whether their membership application will be considered. The club describes itself as friendly, but without imposing on the personal freedom and privacy of each member. It also describes itself as a “family friendly naturist club” and is affiliated with the American Association of Nude Recreation.

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Source: Vancouver Courier

Original publication AUGUST 7, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 19th August 2019

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The persecution of hippies in Formentera 1968/70
The police confidant, the rector of Sant Ferran, was scandalized with the nudity: “They were not violent young people, but if from time to time someone was agitated, we would give him four hosts . “

Far from a supposed tolerance and despite the idealization promoted by tourism marketing, the past hippie of Formentera is marked by the persecution and subsequent expulsion of hundreds of young people by Franco’s authorities, the Civil Guard and organized groups of Formentera in the 1968/70 period. Beginning in the summer of 1967, “summer of love”, Formentera and Ibiza became a stopover on the route that thousands of western youths set out for India and Afghanistan.

Since the arrival of the first “hairy” – as those young people, mostly American, British and French, who bathed naked, worked little and lived with less were known on the island – there were Formenterenses who showed their rejection, but at the same time , many residents welcomed those foreigners who rented houses even if they were in poor condition, consumed in bars and shopped in stores. As the book “The Francoist repression of the hippy movement to Formentera” points out, the authorities of the regime contemplated with concern the fact that the hippie collective was seen with complicity, even sympathy for a notable part of the population of Formentera, a tolerance that threatened to expand to the rest of the country. To clear up any questions about the morality prevailing in the Dictatorship, Franco’s leaders planned an operation to change the perception of those ragged young people who gave the island “an aspect of poverty, misery and abandonment” and with whom it had reached extreme never thought: it is very difficult to go to the beach without seeing several cases (of nudity) , according to one of the reports written by the rector of Sant Ferran, Pep Costa, who served as police confidant.

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Source: Histonudismo

Original publication 07/23/2019

Posted on NatCorn 27th July 2019

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Auckland nudist beach Ladies Bay set to unveil name options for historical signs

Is it a lady’s or is it for ladies – the history of an Auckland nudist beach’s names may soon be revealed for all to see.

Ladies Bay in the east Auckland suburb of St Heliers has long suffered from multiple spellings of its name – and a questionable reputation.

Now local politician Colin Davis is looking to solve the former with a new sign that spells out both of the site’s English names – and adds a Māori one.

While “Ladies Bay” is the name at present printed on an Auckland Council sign, the place has also been known as Lady’s Bay, prompting the question, who was the lady?

A local politician wants the name "Lady's Bay" and also a Māori name added to a new sign for "Ladies Bay" in St Heliers, Auckland
A local politician wants the name “Lady’s Bay” and also a Māori name added to a new sign for “Ladies Bay” in St Heliers, Auckland

Davis, of the Ōrākei Local Board, citing a local historian and reports on a 1940s plan for a flying-boat passenger terminal at the bay, said she was Eliza, Lady Grey, wife of Governor Sir George Grey.

“… hence ‘Lady’s Bay’, which spelling is recorded in a local history and most often in newspapers in the late 1800s, even up to the 1940s,” Davis said in papers for this Thursday’s board meeting where he hopes to persuade colleagues to support his move.

“Sometimes, but not often, the plural spelling ‘Ladies’ – with an apostrophe – was written.”

He told the Herald that work being done, following subsidence, to build new steps down to the bay gave an opportunity to replace the current sign with one that said “Ladies Bay – Lady’s Bay”.

He wants a Māori name added too, in line with Auckland Council policy, and a separate sign explaining the history of the names.

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Source: New Zealand Herald

Original publication 14 May, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 19th May 2019

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Nudity in the sport of ancient Greece

In ancient times, even before the classical era, for example, during the Cretan Minoan civilization, athletic exercise was an important part of everyday life. In fact, the Greeks credited several mythological figures with athletic achievements, and the male gods (especially Apollo and Heracles , sponsors of the sport) were commonly represented as athletes. While Greek sculpture often showed men completely naked, a new concept appeared for women, "venus pudica" (or partially nude), see " Nike of Samothrace ". Nudity in sports was very common, with almost all sports performed naked. As a tradition it was probably introduced for the first time in the city-state of Sparta, during the late archaic period.

The civilization of ancient Greece (Hellas), during the archaic period, had an athletic and cultic aesthetic of nudity that typically included adult men and adolescents, but sometimes also children, women and girls. The love for beauty also included the human body, beyond love for nature, philosophy, the arts, etc. The Greek word gym means " a place to train naked ." Male athletes competed naked, but most of the city-states of the time did not allow female participants or even spectators at those events, with Sparta being a notable exception. The origins of nudity in ancient Greek sports are the subject of a legend about the athlete Orsipo de Megara . There are several myths regarding these origins; in one, Orsipo loses his clothes during the race for the stadium of the XV Olympic Games in 720 BC, which gives him an advantage and wins. Other athletes emulate it and fashion is born.

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Source: Info Nudism

Original publication 04/23/2019

Posted on NatCorn 27th April 2019

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Petaluma’s Past: When D-Day dawned and nudists descended in 1944
“Nudes is nudes, whether it be good nudes or bad nudes!”

On June 6, 1944, 11,000 planes, 4,000 ships, thousands of smaller craft and 250,000 men invaded the shores of Normandy in northwest France, just 120 miles from German-occupied Paris. This incredi-ble event was to become forever known as “D-Day,” and it was to mark the beginning of the end to World War II in Europe.

The Normandy Invasion.
The Normandy Invasion.

History’s greatest armada had begun crossing the turbulent English Channel at midnight, in a driving rainsquall. Consisting mostly of American, British and Canadian forces, 4,400 of them were to perish as the troops beat down the Nazi coastal defenses. The following day, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill announced that several strategic bridges had already been captured. But, the news wasn‘t all about war, that summer of ‘44.

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Source: Argus Courier

Original publication April 19, 2019

Posted on NatCorn 25th April 2019