#AceHistory2ResearchNews – Dec.27:This FRONTLINE series is an intellectual and visual guide to the new and controversial historical evidence which challenges familiar assumptions about the life of Jesus and the epic rise of Christianity.

For an overview of the series read the Synopsis. It includes links to some of the stories and material on this web site which expand the narrative.

This site is anchored by the testimony of New Testament theologians, archaeologists and historians who serve as both critics and storytellers. They address dozens of key issues, disagreements and critical problems relating to Jesus’ life and the evolution of Christianity.

Throughout the site, maps, charts (for example, the fortress of Masada), ancient texts (including Perpetua’s diary), pictures of the archaeological discoveries, ancient imagery, and audio excerpts from the television program complement and illuminate the scholars’commentary.

A new addition to this site is the edited transcript of a two-day symposium at Harvard University.

This symposium was a follow-up to the FRONTLINE broadcast and featured scholars’ presentations, workshops and audience discussion.


#christianity, #jesus-christ


#AceHistory2ResearchNews – Dec.27:Being born in the year 1954 this film was being was released, and as a young boy l watched it a number of times, it thrilled me. With every good film it is shown year after year and what l notice most is Bing Crosby’s timing and the great way the main actor’s and actresses worked so well together.

So here is my White Christmas Story and it is a 1954 American musical romantic comedy film directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, and Vera-Ellen, loosely based on the 1942 film Holiday Inn.[3] Filmed inTechnicolor, White Christmas features the songs of Irving Berlin, including the title song, “White Christmas“.

' White Christmas 1954 '

‘ White Christmas 1954 ‘

Produced and distributed by Paramount Pictures, the film is notable for being the first to be released in VistaVision, a widescreen process developed by Paramount that entailed using twice the surface area of standard 35mm film; this large-area negative was used to yield finer-grained standard-sized 35mm prints.

On Christmas Eve, 1944, somewhere in Europe, two World War II U.S. Army soldiers, one a Broadway entertainer, Captain Bob Wallace (Bing Crosby), the other an aspiring entertainer, Private Phil Davis (Danny Kaye), perform for the 151st Division. But word has come down that their beloved commanding officer, Major General Thomas F. Waverly (Dean Jagger), is being relieved of command. He arrives for the end of the show and delivers an emotional farewell. The men give him a rousing send-off (“The Old Man”).

After the war, Bob and Phil make it big in nightclubs, radio, and then on Broadway, eventually becoming successful producers. They mount their newest hit musical titled Playing Around. The same day they receive a letter from “Freckle-Faced Haynes, the dog-faced boy,” their mess sergeant from the war, asking them to look at an act which his two sisters are doing.

‘ Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye ‘

When they go to the club to watch the act (“Sisters”), Phil notices that Bob is smitten with Betty (Rosemary Clooney), while Phil has eyes for her sister, Judy (Vera-Ellen). Betty and Judy join Bob and Phil at their table, and Phil dances with Judy so that Bob and Betty can get to know each other. Phil and Judy hit it off (“The Best Things Happen While You’re Dancing”).

Judy and Betty head for the Columbia Inn in Pine Tree, Vermont, where they are booked to perform over the holidays.

Phil gives the sisters his and Bob’s sleeping-room accommodations aboard the train to Vermont.

When the train arrives in Pine Tree, there’s not a snowflake in sight, and chances of it falling appear dim. Bob and Phil discover that the inn is run by their former commanding officer, General Waverly. Waverly has invested all of his savings into the lodge, which is in danger of failing because there’s no snow and thus no guests. To bring business to the inn, Bob and Phil bring the entire cast and crew of their musical Playing Around, and add in Betty and Judy. Bob and Betty’s relationship blooms (“Count Your Blessings”) and they spend a good deal of time together. Meanwhile, Bob discovers the General’s request to rejoin the army has been rejected.

He decides to prove to the General that he isn’t forgotten.

Bob calls Ed Harrison (Johnny Grant), an old army buddy, now a successful variety show host, to arrange a televised invitation to all the men formerly under the command of the General to come to the inn on Christmas Eve as a surprise. In response, Harrison suggests they go all out and put the show on national television to generate free advertising for Wallace and Davis. Unbeknownst to Bob, nosy housekeeper Emma Allen (Mary Wickes) was eavesdropping, but she only heard the part about free advertising, not Bob’s rejection of the idea.

Mistakenly believing that her beloved boss will be portrayed as a pitiable figure in a nationwide broadcast, Emma reveals what she heard to a shocked Betty. The misunderstanding causes Betty to grow suddenly cold toward a baffled Bob. Meanwhile, Judy becomes convinced that Betty will never take on a serious relationship until Judy is engaged or married. She pressures a reluctant Phil to announce a phony engagement, but the plan backfires when Betty abruptly departs for New York City to take a job offer.

Phil and Judy reveal to Bob that the engagement was phony, and Bob, still unaware of the real reason behind Betty’s coldness, follows Betty to New York. Bob sees Betty’s new act (“Love, You Didn’t Do Right by Me”) and reveals the truth about the engagement, but is called away by Ed Harrison before learning what is really bothering her. Back at the Inn, Phil fakes an injury to distract the General so he won’t see the broadcast of Bob’s announcement.

On the broadcast, Bob invites veterans of the 151st Division to come to Pine Tree, Vermont, on Christmas Eve (“What Can You Do with a General”). Betty catches Bob’s televised pitch and realizes she was mistaken. She returns to Pine Tree in time for the Christmas Eve show. When the General enters the lodge, he is greeted by his former division, who sing a rousing chorus of “The Old Man.” Just as the following number (“Gee, I Wish I Was Back in the Army”) ends, he learns that snow is finally falling.

In the finale, Bob and Betty declare their love for one another, as do Phil and Judy. The background of the set is removed to show the snow falling, everyone raises a glass, and toasts,

“May your days be merry and bright; and may all your Christmases be white.”




#AceHistory2ResearchNews – Featured Post:Dec.27: There has been a hotel on the site of the present day Filmers Hotel since 1883 when “The Great Western” was opened on May 24 1883.

By: The Palace Hotel

Filmer’s Palace Hotel is often referred to as the hotel where the Bee Gees sang and holds fond memories for many day trippers, holiday makers and Redcliffe residents alike.

A fire in the kitchen on Wednesday,  July 3rd, 2013 closed the doors and the hotel has been sitting vacant until now. (Ref)

Click to enlarge

The Palace Hotel

The Palace Hotel

Video taken today:

The Palace 1

The Palace 1

The Palace 2

Black and White


#filmers-palace-hotel, #the-great-western


#AceHistory2ResearchNews – Dec.27- For the Hindus and Buddhists in India and other Asian countries, the swastika was an important symbol for many thousands of years and, to this day, the symbol can still be seen in abundance – on temples, buses, taxis, and on the cover of books.

It was also used in Ancient Greece and can be found in the remains of the ancient city of Troy, which existed 4,000 years ago. The ancient Druids and the Celts also used the symbol, reflected in many artefacts that have been discovered.

It was used by Nordic tribes and even early Christians used the Swastika as one of their symbols, including the Teutonic Knights, a German medieval military order, which became a purely religious Catholic Order.

But why is this symbol so important and why did Adolf Hitler decide to use it?

The word ‘swastika’ is a Sanskrit word (‘svasktika’) meaning ‘It is’, ‘Well Being’, ‘Good Existence, and ‘Good Luck’. However, it is also known by different names in different countries – like ‘Wan’ in China, ‘Manji’ in Japan, ‘Fylfot’ in England, ‘Hakenkreuz’ in Germany and ‘Tetraskelion’ or ‘Tetragammadion’ in Greece.


A Sanskrit scholar P. R. Sarkar in 1979 said that the deeper meaning of the word is ‘Permanent Victory’. He also said that as any symbol it can have positive and negative meaning depending on how it is drawn. So in Hinduism, the right-hand swastika is a symbol of the God Vishnu and the Sun, while the left-hand swastika is a symbol of Kali and Magic. The double meaning of symbols is common in ancient traditions, like for example the symbol of the pentagram (five pointed star), which is viewed as negative when pointing downwards, and positive when pointing upwards.


The earliest swastika ever found was uncovered in Mezine, Ukraine, carved on an ivory figurine, which dates an incredible 12,000 years, and one of the earliest cultures that are known to have used the Swastika was a Neolithic culture in Southern Europe, in the area that is now Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, known as the Vinca Culture, which dates back around 8,000 years.


In Buddhism, the swastika is a symbol of good fortune, prosperity, abundance and eternity. It is directly related to Buddha and can be found carved on statues on the soles of his feet and on his heart. It is said that it contains Buddha’s mind.

On the walls of the Christian catacombs in Rome, the symbol of the Swastika appears next to the words “ZOTIKO ZOTIKO” which means “Life of Life”. It can also be found on the window openings of the mysterious Lalibela Rock churches of Ethiopia, and in various other churches around the world.


In Nordic Myths, Odin is represented passing through space as a whirling disk or swastika looking down through all worlds. In North America, the swastika was used by the Navajos. In Ancient Greece, Pythagoras used the Swastika under the name ‘Tetraktys’ and it was a symbol linking heaven and earth, with the right arm pointing to heaven and its left arm pointing to Earth.


It has been used by the Phoenicians as a symbol of the Sun and it was a sacred symbol used by the priestesses.



The Advent Calendar of Literature: Day 21

Interesting Literature

Our exploration of noteworthy facts involving Christmas presents and American writers continues today. Yesterday we revealed the odd items which were the only Christmas presents William Faulkner would accept from his family.
Today, we look at how a generous Christmas gift led to one of the most popular and enduring works of twentieth-Presentscentury literature being written.

In December 1956, Nelle Harper Lee, better known as Harper Lee, the author of To Kill a Mockingbird, received a rather useful Christmas present from her friends, Michael Brown and Joy Williams Brown. It was a short note which read: ‘You have one year off from your job to write whatever you please. Merry Christmas.’ Enclosed were a year’s wages, which Lee could only accept on condition that she give up work and write for a year. She accepted. Over the next year, she wrote the novel that became To…

View original post 110 more words

MEXICO: ‘ Cave of Caves ‘

#AceHistory2ResearchNews – MEXICO:Dec.21- Mexico’s Cave of Crystals stunned geologists when it was first discovered in 2000. The underground chamber contains some of the largest natural crystals ever found – some of the selenite structures have grown to more than 10m long. Professor Iain Stewart got a rare glimpse of the subterranean spectacle while filming for the new BBC series How the Earth Made Us. BBC News – http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8466493.stm

SNIPPETS OF HISTORY: ‘ Operation Linebacker ll A/KA Christmas Bombings of North Vietnam ‘

#AceHistory2ResearchNews – USA:Dec.18 – On December 14 1972 with Henry Kissinger being unable to find any common ground acceptable to both Vietnamese parties in two renewed rounds of negotiations, Nixon ordered massive B–52 attacks on the North Vietnamese heartland called the “Christmas Bombing.” or operation Linebacker ll

​United States Air Force B-52 bombing crews at Andersen Air Base in Guam being briefed on the U.S.’s final major aerial bombing campaign in North Vietnam, Operation Linebacker II.

Meanwhile he continued to exert intense pressure on Thieu, threatening to cut off U.S. economic, military, and political support of South Vietnam if Thieu refused to accept the agreement.

Negotiations resumed on January 8, 1973, and the United States and the Democratic Republic of Vietnam initialed the agreement on January 23.

Thieu reluctantly accepted the settlement despite his continued misgivings, and the peace agreement was signed on January 27.


SNIPPETS OF HISTORY: ‘ Chattel Slavery is Abolished ‘

#AceHistory2ResearchNews – USA:Dec.18 – Slavery in the United States was the legal institution of chattel slavery that existed in the United States of America in the 18th and 19th centuries. Slavery had been practiced in British North America from early colonial days, and was recognized in the Thirteen Colonies at the time of the Declaration of Independence in 1776.

When the United States was founded, even though some free persons of color were present, the status of slave was largely coincident with being of African descent, creating a system and legacy in which race played an influential role. After the Revolutionary War, abolitionist laws and sentiment gradually spread in the Northern states, while the rapid expansion of the cotton industry from 1800 led to the Southern states strongly identifying with slavery, and attempting to extend it into the new Western territories. The United States was polarized by slavery into slave and free states along the Mason-Dixon Line, which separated Maryland (slave) and Pennsylvania (free).

Although the international slave trade was prohibited from 1808, internal slave-trading continued, and the slave population would eventually peak at four million before abolition.[1][2]

As the West opened up, the Southern states believed they needed to keep a balance between the numbers of slave and free states, in order to maintain a balance of power in Congress. The new territories acquired from Britain, France, and Mexico were the subject of major political compromises. By 1850, the newly rich cotton-growing South was threatening to secede from the Union, and tensions continued to rise. With church ministers under pressure to preach slavery doctrine conforming to the local politics, the Baptist and Methodist churches split into regional organizations. When Abraham Lincoln won the 1860 election on a platform of no new slave states, the South finally broke away to form the Confederacy. This marked the start of the Civil War, which caused a huge disruption of the slave economy, with many slaves either escaping or being liberated by the Union armies.

The war effectively ended slavery, before the Thirteenth Amendment (December 1865) formally outlawed the institution throughout the United States.


SNIPPETS OF HISTORY: ‘ Mayflower Transported Pilgrims to the New World ‘

#AceHistory2ResearchNews – Dec.18 – The Mayflower was the ship that transported mostly English Puritans and Separatists, collectively known today as the Pilgrims, from Plymouth England to the New World. There were 102 passengers and the crew is estimated to be approximately 30 but the exact number is unknown.

​This voyage has become an iconic story in some of the earliest annals of American history, with its story of death and of survival in the harsh New World winter environment.

The culmination of the voyage in the signing of the Mayflower Compact is an event which established a rudimentary form of democracy, with each member contributing to the welfare of the community.


USA: ‘ Bureau of Investigation’s Role During World War One ‘

#AceHistory2ResearchNews – Dec.17 – When war broke out in Europe a hundred years ago—in 1914, to be exact—the U.S. declared its neutrality, and U.S. investigative agencies like the Bureau of Investigation (the precursor to the FBI) had little role to play.

Bureau of Investigation Badge
A badge from the Bureau of Investigation, as the FBI was called from 1909 to 1935.

As the conflict escalated, though, American munitions, food, and other goods became a point of contention. Great Britain and its allies tried to purchase all they could afford from the U.S. to bolster their effort.

But Germany and its allies, blockaded by British ships, took up submarine warfare to try and prevent their enemies from benefiting from American trade and turned to sabotage, espionage, propaganda, and other intelligence tactics to succeed.

The U.S. government’s response was divided. On the one hand, the Treasury Department’s Secret Service sought to pursue German spies and their agents in the U.S. In one well known case, a Secret Service agent tailing a known German agent in New York City picked up a briefcase accidentally left behind on a bus—it contained a trove of documents related to German efforts to clandestinely plan and support secret activities aimed at interfering with American assistance to the Allies.

On the other hand, because little of this activity violated the limited federal laws at the time, U.S. Attorney General Thomas Gregory cautioned the Bureau of Investigation to keep its investigations into German activities limited—even though they were potential threats to our national security.

That did not mean the Bureau was on the sidelines, however. Between 1914 and American entry into the war in 1917, the Bureau’s national security war-related investigations grew rapidly, from a small percentage of our total workload in 1914 to almost 30 percent two years later.

Attorney General Thomas Gregory, 1917
U.S. Attorney General Thomas Gregory, shown in this 1917 photo, served from 1914-1919. Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress.

Among some of these early investigations:

  • In 1914, Bureau agents broke up a ring run by Hans Adam Wedel, Carl Ruroede, and others who engaged in a variety of frauds to obtain passports for the use of German reservists stuck in the U.S. when war erupted.
  • In 1915, Bureau agents investigated Werner Horn, a German national who bombed a bridge between Maine and Canada. Horn had attacked the Canadian side of the bridge and declared himself an agent of the German Army. The Bureau helped develop evidence that Horn had carried dynamite on public interstate transportation, a federal crime. He served 18 months in a U.S. prison and was later extradited to Canada, where he was sentenced for his sabotage.
  • Also in 1915, agents in New York investigated a plot to blow up the Welland Canal, a major shipping point between Lakes Erie and Ontario. Paul Koenig, head of security for a German shipping line, and Richard Leyendecker, a New York antiques dealer, were arrested. German military attaché Franz von Papen was also charged for his role in the plot, but he had already left the U.S. by then. Papen, however, was soon connected to the previously mentioned Secret Service investigation involving a briefcase full of sensitive German documents left on a New York City bus.

In fact, it was these investigations by the Bureau and the Secret Service, along with Germany’s resumption of unlimited submarine warfare and their plan to convince Mexico and Japan to ally with it against the United States, that helped convince America to enter the war on the Allied side on April 6, 1917.