Reuters: What The Hell?

Oldest Woman

What the hell is this statement about? America bashing at it’s best? This is ridiculous.

How should they have phrased it? It looks perfectly accurate to me.


How about:

Hendrikje van Andel-Schipper, a former needlework teacher, was born in 1890.

Born in year X when event Y happened.

The bastards!

Is there some sort of prior record of America-bashing exhibited by Reuters that I’m unaware of? The writer wanted to give readers what it meant to have been born that long ago, and that was apparently the most well-known event he or she could latch onto, fer chrissake. Anything earth-shattering happen that same year in Holland? Damned if I know.

Jeez, wish all I had to do all day was search out obscure wire service stories to get all worked up about. Of course, if I did it might cut into my carping time on the SDMB, and we couldn’t have that. :smiley:

I assume they are simply trying give the year some context by providing a historical incident that happened that year. If that was the year that the US gave puppies and Skittles to the Sioux that might have been mentioned instead.

Hendrikje van Andel-Schipper, a former needlework teacher, was born in 1890, the year of the first Army-Navy football game.

the year Groucho Marx was born.

the year Vincent Van Gogh died.

the year Otto von Bismark got fired.

and of course,

the year the Seventh Calvary massacred over 400 Indians at Wounded Knee, South Dakota.

Bury my heath at Wounded Knee has made that battle quite famous internationally.

I think his point was, of all the historical events that happened in 1890, why pick one that portrays the United States in a negative light?

Why not? Look, they just picked a famous occurence. What is the point in anyone getting bent out of shape about it?

Well… For an obituary, it does seem a little out of place.

I mean, how would you like it if, at your funeral, the minister took the pulpit and said "John Doper was born in 1969, the same year that the first known AIDS death happened in America. AIDS would later go on to cause untold suffering, killing millions of people by slowly weakening their immune systems until they died an agonizing death from infections that wouldn’t harm normal people.

He was a good man, a kind man, …"

Yes, partially that, I don’t really think the year needs any historical context at all, but there are plenty of others they could have used. I wouldn’t find it so galling even if they had said something like “…born in 1890, the year Vincent Van Gogh killed himself, Idaho and Wyoming were admitted as states, and the famous massacre of 400 Sioux at wounded Knee by the U.S military.” It just the one event of all the events possible sticks out to me.

What other famous events happened in 1890?


  • January 2 - Alice Sanger becomes the first female staffer for the U.S. White House.
    • January 25 - The United Mine Workers of America is founded.
    • January 25 - Nellie Bly completes her round-the-world journey in 72 days.
    • March 1 - Léon Bourgeois succeeds Ernest Constans as French Minister of the Interior
    • March 4 - The longest bridge in Britain, the Forth Bridge (1,710 ft) in Scotland is opened.
    • March 20 - Wilhelm II of Germany fires Otto von Bismarck
    • May 12 - The first ever official County Championship match begins. Yorkshire beat Gloucestershire by eight wickets at Bristol. George Ulyett scores the first century in the competition.
    • June 1 - The United States Census Bureau begins using Herman Hollerith’s tabulating machine to count census returns.
    • July 1 - Britain receives Zanzibar from Germany in exchange of Heligoland
    • July 3 - Idaho is admitted as the 43rd U.S. state.
    • July 10 - Wyoming is admitted as the 44th U.S. state.
    • July 27 - Vincent van Gogh shoots himself to the chest and dies two days later
    • August 6 - At Auburn Prison in New York, the first execution by electric chair is performed (murderer William Kemmler was the subject).
    • October 8 - First flight of Clement’s Ader airplane “Eole” In Satory, France. In Greek mythology, Eole is the god of the winds.
    • October 11 - In Washington, DC, the Daughters of the American Revolution is founded.
    • November 23 - King William III of the Netherlands dies without a male heir and a special law is passed to allow his daughter Princess Wilhelmina to become Queen.
    • November 29 - The Meiji Constitution goes into effect in Japan and the first Diet convenes.
    • November 29 - In West Point, New York, the United States Navy defeats the United States Army 24 to 0 in the first Army-Navy football game.
    • December 29 - The United States Seventh Cavalry massacres over 400 men, women and children at Wounded Knee, South Dakota (see Wounded Knee Massacre).
      December 29 looks like the top attraction.

1890: US military liberates Wounded Knee and crushes the Sioux Indian insurgents in ongoing war on terror.

Part of the goal of the article is to make the year sound like it was as long ago as possible, so you pick something like an Indian war that hasn’t happened in a long while.

Yes, I have to agree. Vincent van Go was famous, but the indian story, in my eyes holds more weight.

A celebrity dies story is not about something that happens, but about something(one) that stops happening, while the Indian story is about something that happened.

None of the other events cited give the color of the times as vividly as the Wounded Knee massacre. It was a time when there were still cowboys and Indians duking it out on the plains. A looong time ago.

I thought it odd too when I read it though I didn’t get too worked up about it.

So you are saying folks would be confused as to how long ago 1890 was?

Do you deny that mentioning something that happened in 1890, something of the the type that hasn’t happened in a very long time, doesn’t help bring home to the reader what a long time ago it was? That nothing is added by doing that?