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John Newton

John Newton was an English Anglican clergyman and abolitionist, forced to serve as a sailor in the Royal Navy for a period. In 1745 he became a slave of Princess Peye, a black princess of the Sherbro people and years after, he became the captain of slave ships, he became ordained as an evangelical Anglican cleric, serving Olney, Buckinghamshire for two decades, wrote hymns, including "Amazing Grace" and "Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken". Newton started his career at sea at a young age, worked on slave ships in the slave trade for several years. After experiencing a period of Christian conversion Newton renounced his trade and became a prominent supporter of abolitionism, living to see the UK's abolition of the African slave trade in 1807, just before his death. John Newton was born in Wapping, London, in 1725, the son of John Newton Sr. a shipmaster in the Mediterranean service, Elizabeth. Elizabeth was the only daughter of an instrument maker from London. Elizabeth was brought up as a Nonconformist.

She died of tuberculosis in July 1732, about two weeks before John's seventh birthday. Newton spent two years at boarding school before going to live in Aveley in Essex, the home of his father's new wife. At age eleven he first went to sea with his father. Newton sailed six voyages before his father retired in 1742. At that time, Newton's father made plans for him to work at a sugarcane plantation in Jamaica. Instead, Newton signed on with a merchant ship sailing to the Mediterranean Sea. In 1743, while going to visit friends, Newton was captured and pressed into the naval service by the Royal Navy, he became a midshipman aboard HMS Harwich. At one point Newton tried to desert and was punished in front of the crew of 350. Stripped to the waist and tied to the grating, he received a flogging of eight dozen lashes and was reduced to the rank of a common seaman. Following that disgrace and humiliation, Newton contemplated murdering the captain and committing suicide by throwing himself overboard, he recovered, both mentally.

While Harwich was en route to India, he transferred to Pegasus, a slave ship bound for West Africa. The ship carried goods to Africa and traded them for slaves to be shipped to the colonies in the Caribbean and North America. Newton did not get along with the crew of Pegasus. In 1745 they left him in West Africa with a slave dealer. Clowe gave him to his wife, Princess Peye of the Sherbro people, she mistreated Newton just as much as she did her other slaves. Newton recounted this period as the time he was "once an infidel and libertine, a servant of slaves in West Africa."Early in 1748 he was rescued by a sea captain, asked by Newton's father to search for him, returned to England on the merchant ship Greyhound, carrying beeswax and dyer's wood, now referred to as camwood. During his 1748 voyage to England after his rescue, Newton had a spiritual conversion; the ship encountered a severe storm off the coast of Donegal and sank. He began to read other religious literature. By the time he reached Britain, he had accepted the doctrines of evangelical Christianity.

The date was an anniversary he marked for the rest of his life. From that point on, he avoided profanity and drinking. Although he continued to work in the slave trade, he had gained sympathy for the slaves during his time in Africa, he said that his true conversion did not happen until some time later: "I cannot consider myself to have been a believer in the full sense of the word, until a considerable time afterwards." Newton returned in 1748 to a major port for the Triangle Trade. Due to the influence of his father's friend Joseph Manesty, he obtained a position as first mate aboard the slave ship Brownlow, bound for the West Indies via the coast of Guinea, it was when returning to England aboard the ship Greyhound in 1748, awoke to find the ship caught in a violent storm and about to sink. He prayed for God's mercy, the storm died down. After four more weeks at sea the Greyhound made it to port in Ireland; this experience marked the beginning of his conversion to Christianity. Newton continued to work in the slave trade.

After his return to England in 1750, he made three voyages as captain of the slave ships Duke of Argyle and African. After suffering a severe stroke in 1754, he gave up seafaring and slave-trading activities, but continued to invest in Manesty's slaving operations. In 1780 Newton moved to the City of London as rector of St Mary Woolnoth Church, where he contributed to the work of the Committee for the Abolition of the Slave Trade, formed in 1787. During this time he wrote Thoughts Upon the African Slave Trade. In it he states. In 1750 Newton married Mary Catlett, in St Margaret's Church, Rochester. Newton adopted his two orphaned nieces, Elizabeth Cunningham and Eliza Catlett, both from the Catlett side of the family. Newton's niece Alys Newton married Mehul, a prince from India. In 1755 Newton was appointed as tide surveyor of the Port of Liverpool, again through the influence of Manesty. In his spare time, he studied Greek and Syriac, preparing for serious religious study, he be

Georgia Brass Band

The Georgia Brass Band was conceived by co-founders Joe Johnson and Christopher Priest in the spring of 1999. It is a traditional British brass band; the band performed its first concert in September of that year and has maintained a busy schedule since. Band members are selected by audition or invitation and include some of the finest musicians in the Atlanta area. Instrumentation follows the British tradition of Cornets, 1 in Eb, 9 in B♭, Tenor Horns, 3 in E♭, Baritones, 2 in B♭, Euphoniums, 2 in B♭, Tenor Trombones, 2 in B♭, Bass Trombone, 1 in B♭, Percussion. All of the GBB's members and staff volunteer their time and talents to the band; the membership represents a variety of professions, including lawyers, salespeople, business owners, students, computer professionals, freelance musicians, a former college vice president, a real estate agent, an engineer, a financial planner, a pipe organ builder. While their backgrounds may vary, all members share a love for making good music together.

The band's repertoire is quite diverse, ranging from the Renaissance and Baroque eras through the 21st century. The music library contains marches, sacred arrangements, popular music, jazz tunes, movie themes, classical transcriptions; the band performs a number of concert selections and contest items written for brass band. The brass band's versatile combination of instruments can produce a variety of tonal colors allowing it to perform transcriptions of most musical styles; the Georgia Brass Band has appeared on Atlanta radio and television and performed at schools, concert halls, music camps, colleges around the southeastern United States. The band has had several concert performances broadcast on WABE-FM's Atlanta Music Scene program; the band has appeared with a number of renowned brass soloists, including former Empire Brass trombonist Scott Hartman, Atlanta Symphony principal trombonist Colin Williams, trumpet soloist Vince DiMartino, Chicago Symphony principal trumpeter Christopher Martin and bass trombonist Charlie Vernon, Black Dyke Band principal cornetist Richard Marshall and principal trombonist Brett Baker, euphonium soloist Steven Mead and former NY Philharmonic principal trumpet Philip Smith.

Other notable soloists to have appeared with the band include Patrick Sheridan, Thomas Ruedi, Tormod Flaten, Demondrae Thurmond, David Childs, Chris Gekker, Mark Clodfelter, jazz artist Ingrid Jensen. The band is a regular participant in the International Euphonium Institute held annually at Emory University in Atlanta; the band has been featured at the US Army Ground Forces Band Tuba/Euphonium Conference, the Southeast Regional Tuba/Euphonium Conference, Atlanta Trumpet Festival, the International Trumpet Guild Conference, the International Trombone Festival, the Deep South Brass Band Festival, the Southeast Trumpet Festival, the Great American Brass Band Festival. In 2009 and 2012 the band was a featured ensemble at the Georgia Music Educators Association conference in Savannah, GA. In 2006, the Georgia Brass Band became a member of the North American Brass Band Association competing in that year's championship in Louisville, KY. Bands competing in NABBA championships are divided into different levels, or "sections" according to their perceived ability.

The highest three levels of NABBA competition are known as the "Championship", "Honors" and "Challenge" sections. Because the GBB had never competed, they chose to enter as a participant in the Challenge section and promptly introduced themselves to the brass banding world by winning the section with a score of 278.2 out of a possible 300 - nearly 26 points ahead of the 2nd-place band in the section. In 2007, the band returned to the championships. Against the stiffer competition of this section, Georgia fared quite well and finished in second place in the section with a score of 269, three points behind the section's champion. In March 2008, the GBB competed again in the Honors section and scored an impressive 288.6 points, enough to give them their second championship banner in three attempts. The GBB has gone on to earn second-place finishes in the NABBA First Section in 2009, 2010 and 2015; the band was a resident ensemble at the now-defunct Dozier Centre for the Performing Arts in Kennesaw, GA, during the 2007 performance season.

The band's devotion to the community is proven through their volunteer efforts including free concerts and work with WABE public broadcasting. The band has served as a mentoring partner to the Georgia Youth Symphony Orchestra Brass Band

Gingras Trading Post State Historic Site

The Gingras Trading Post State Historic Site is a North Dakota State Historic Site near Walhalla, North Dakota. It features the trading home of the Metis legislator Antoine Blanc Gingras. Gingras built a two-story exposed-log trading post and a clapboard house on his plot of land in the 1840s. In 1861, the net worth of Gingras was $60,000.00. He soon owned trading posts across parts of Southern Manitoba. In 1851, Gingras was chosen to represent the area in the Minnesota Territorial House of Representatives, he served in the legislature from 1852–1853. When Louis Riel started the 1869 Red River Rebellion, Gingras participated in the events; when the City of Winnipeg was chartered, Gingras was present. The Gingras Trading Post is listed on the National Register of Historic Places; the North Dakota State Historical Society operates the site. It features the original buildings and exhibits about Antoine Blanc Gingras, Metis culture, the Red River Valley fur trade, it contains a reproduction of the Gingras Store.

Metis Gingras Trading Post State Historic Site website

Bela Stena

Bela Stena is an island resort in the Danube, located in the city of Pančevo in Serbia. Bela Stena is located 12 km on the western tip of the island of Forkontumac; the name, bela stena, is descriptive, meaning white rock in Serbian. When the landslide occurred on the island, to the distant fishermen from Višnjica and Veliko Selo it appeared as the white rocks. Bela Stena is a weekend settlement, without resident population, it has 500 vacation homes owned by the citizens of Belgrade and Pančevo, many of which are abandoned or put up for sale. Bela Stena is classified as the wild beach, it means it has the ambulance. Further, it has the running water; the open fire is forbidden, so the visitors light fire in the holes they dig in the sand on the beach. There are four fish restaurants. A small beach made it a popular resort in the 1970s and 1980s, when the population grew to 20,000 over the weekends, it was popular as a destination for children's tourism. But little has been done to improve the conditions in terms of traffic accessibility.

With the rapid expansion and modernization of Ada Ciganlija, close to downtown Belgrade, the emergence of the Lido beach near Zemun, Bela Stena became less popular, though it is estimated that some 7,000 people still visit over the weekends during summer season. Walking to the furthest extension of the beach to the east, the lighthouse of the Pančevo lighthouse tower at the mouth of the Timiș River into the Danube; the entire central and eastern part of the Forkontumac is an undisturbed lush green area. Beach itself is surrounded by the grove of the Canadian poplars

Black-and-white hawk-eagle

"Spizaetus melanoleucus" redirect here. This name was used for the black-chested eagle-buzzard; the black-and-white hawk-eagle is a bird of prey species in the hawk family. It is found throughout a large part from southern Mexico to northern Argentina; as its name suggest, this is a black and white eagle, resembling the small typical eagles sometimes separated in "Hieraaetus". It weighs about 30 oz; the head and body are white. The wings are black, the bird has a brownish tail barred black-dark grey and with white tip; the iris is orange, the feet pale to bright yellow with black talons. The bill is black with a yellow cere; the sexes are alike in color. Immature birds have pale edges on some brownish-grey feathers on the back; the black-and-white hawk-eagle is hard to confuse with any other bird in its range. The black-faced hawk is similar in overall coloration, but it is much smaller and has a black tail with a single bold white bar in the middle; the ornate hawk-eagle a close relative of S. melanoleucus, looks quite similar when young.

However, the wings and tail are much lighter in young S. ornatus, they do not have the black eye-ring. This species occurs from Oaxaca to Veracruz in southern Mexico southwards throughout Central America, with the exception of most of El Salvador and the Pacific coast of Nicaragua. In South America, it occurs on the Pacific side of the Andes south to Ecuador; the bulk of its range extends along the Caribbean coast from northern Colombia and Venezuela to the Guianas, south through eastern Brazil and Uruguay to NE Argentina, from there westwards again to Beni and Santa Cruz in NE Bolivia. A black-and-white hawk-eagle population is found in the Loreto Region of NE Peru; the species is absent from the western Amazon basin, it is not common in the lands to the east. Its natural habitats are lowland forests of any type, though dense and humid as well as savanna-like semiarid habitat are not preferred. Habitat fragmentation is not well tolerated, its range does not extend far into the uplands, but one individual was sighted at an altitude of about 4,000 ft ASL in the Buena Vista Nature Reserve in Colombia's Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.

The food of this carnivore consists of mammals, squamates and in particular a wide variety of birds. Among the latter, it is known to prefer tree-living species, such as oropendolas, aracaris and cotingas, but ground- and waterbirds like tinamous, chachalacas and the threatened Brazilian merganser have been recorded as its prey. The black-and-white hawk-eagle has been known to attack small monkeys, though it is not clear with which intent. For as it seems, it has not been recorded to kill and eat a monkey, its preferred hunting technique is to soar high until it has spotted suitable prey, dive down on it right into the forest canopy, but it has been observed to catch a white woodpecker, mobbing it in mid-air, after launching itself from its perch. It likes to hunt along ridges and forest edges where it can access the canopy-level from an oblique direction rather than just from directly above, where ground-living prey is more accessible, it nests in the forest canopy, building a stick nest high up in exposed trees on ridges and similar locations, from where good hunting grounds can be watched.

Detailed observations on its nesting habits are nearly non-existent however. In Panama, birds started to construct a nest in September, during a dry spell in the rainy season, but the main nesting season may start before the onset of the rainy season as the nesting attempt was abandoned when heavy rains recommenced. The scant other data agrees with this, at least in Central America the nesting season seems to run from March to June or so. There is a general lack of information on the black-and-white hawk-eagle's movements and population status; each bird seems to require a hunting territory of about 3,500 acres at least. While the variety of habitat types in which it is found suggests that it is not susceptible to changes in land use, it is still a rare and local species anywhere in its range; the IUCN until 2000 classified it as a Near Threatened species due to the uncertainties surrounding its status, but as no evidence of a marked decline has been found and as the bird is found across a wide range, it was downlisted to a Species of Least Concern.

This species is placed in the monotypic genus Spizastur, but has been moved to Spizaetus e.g. by the American Ornithologists' Union, as it appears that the ornate hawk-eagle is its sister taxon. This has created quite some taxonomic confusion, which has gone unnoticed however: Originally, the name Spizaetus melanoleucus was given by Louis Jean Pierre Vieillot to the black-chested buzzard-eagle in 1819, while the black-and-white hawk-eagle had been described in 1816 by the same scientist as Buteo melanoleucus; the former species was placed in Geranoaetus – a monotypic genus – in 1844, while the black-and-white ha

Ji Xu

Ji Xu was an official of Wu Zetian's Zhou Dynasty, serving as chancellor. It is not known when Ji Xu was born, he was said to be tall, daring to speak. After passing the imperial examination, he was made the sheriff of Mingtang County, one of the counties making up the western capital Chang'an. At that time, his father Ji Zhe was serving as the prefect of Yi Prefecture and was accused of receiving bribes, a capital offense. Ji Xu went to see Wu Zetian's powerful nephew Wu Chengsi and offered to have his two younger sisters become Wu Chengsi's servant girls. Ji Xu's sisters, after being delivered to Wu Chengsi's mansion, would not speak for three days, he asked them why—and they responded, "Our father has violated the law and is set to be sentenced to death, therefore we are worried." Wu Chengsi interceded on Ji Zhe's behalf, Ji Zhe was spared. In 697, Ji Xu heard that the official Liu Sili had been involved in a treasonous plot to make another official, Qilian Yao, emperor, he reported this to fellow sheriff Lai Junchen—a powerful secret service official, demoted—and let Lai report this to Wu Zetian.

As a part of subsequent investigation ordered by Wu Zetian, 36 families were slaughtered. Lai wanted to monopolize Wu Zetian's awards, therefore began to accuse Ji Xu of crimes; when Ji Xu heard this, he made an emergency secret report to Wu Zetian, when she summoned him to her presence, he defended himself. Therefore, while Lai became powerful again, Ji was promoted; that year, when Lai was accused of planning to falsely accuse the Wu clan imperial princes and Wu Zetian's daughter Princess Taiping, Princess Taiping and the Wu clan princes reported this to Wu Zetian, she arrested him, but was not certain whether to execute him, as she believed that he had contributed to her reign. On an occasion when Wu Zetian was touring her garden, Ji was attending to her, she asked him whether there was anything unusual happening among the people, he pointed out that the people were surprised that, despite the serious crimes that Lai was accused of, Wu Zetian had not put him to death. Wu Zetian, accepting Ji's suggestion that Lai should be put to death, did so.

She promoted Ji to be an assistant censor. It was said that because Ji was talented and full of strategies, Wu Zetian trusted him as a strategist. At this time, Wu Zetian's son Li Dan, a former emperor of the Tang Dynasty, interrupted by Wu Zetian's reign, was crown prince, but her nephews Wu Chengsi and Wu Sansi had designs on the position, were having their associates lobby for them, pointing out that no emperor had designated someone of a different clan as heir. Ji, friendly with Wu Zetian's lovers Zhang Yizhi and Zhang Changzong, advised them that they would be in desperate situations if Wu Zetian should die and suggested that they should suggest the return of Li Dan's older brother Li Zhe, the Prince of Luling, himself a former emperor whom Wu Zetian had deposed and exiled—something advocated by the chancellors Di Renjie, Wang Fangqing, Wang Jishan; the Zhangs did so, Wu Zetian, knowing that it was Ji who had given them the idea, summoned Ji and questioned him about it. At Ji's further urging, Wu Zetian agreed with the proposal and, in 698, recalled Li Zhe to the capital.

Soon, Li Dan offered to yield the position of crown prince, Wu Zetian created Li Zhe crown prince and changed his name to Li Xian. In 698, there was a major Eastern Tujue attack. Wu Zetian made Ji the prefect of Xiang Prefecture, placed him in charge of reviewing the affairs of the armies she sent against Eastern Tujue forces. Ji declined the appointment, claiming that he knew nothing about military matters, she responded, "The thieves will be departing, I want you to calm the people." During the campaign, Ji observed that the people were glad to serve on the campaign when they heard that Li Xian had been nominally put in command of the army, he told this to Wu Zetian, who in turn told him to publicize it to imperial officials. Because of this, the Wu clan imperial princes despised him. After the end of the campaign, there was an occasion when Ji and Wu Yizong, the Prince of Henan, a grandson of Wu Zetian's uncle Wu Shiyi, were arguing over whose contributions during the Eastern Tujue campaign was greater—and during the argument, Ji, tall and strong, physically imposed himself over Wu Yizong, short and bent in his stature, leading Wu Zetian to be displeased, commenting to herself, "Ji Xu disrespects the Wus in my presence.

After that certain day, how can I depend on him?" Still, in 699, she made him an imperial attendant, along with Zhang Yizhi, Zhang Changzong, Tian Guidao, Li Jiongxiu, Xue Ji, Yuan Banqian. She soon made him the deputy minister of civil service affairs and gave him the designation Tong Fengge Luantai Pinzhangshi, making him a chancellor de facto. While he was serving as chancellor, Wu Zetian, still displeased over his disrespect for Wu Yizong, on an occasion when Ji was reporting on matters of state and citing various historical incidents to support his argument, in order to frighten him, intentionally showed her anger, stating: What you have stated I have heard many times, you need not repeat it. Emperor Taizong had a horse with the name "Lion Stallion," and it was so large and strong that no one could get on its back. I was