Stamford Hill

Stamford Hill is an area in Inner London, located about 5.5 miles north-east of Charing Cross. The neighbourhood is a sub-district of Hackney, the major component of the London Borough of Hackney, is known for its Jewish Chasidic community, the largest concentration of Charedi Hasidic Jews in Europe; the district takes its name from the eponymous hill, which reaches a height of 33m AOD, the Roman A10 takes the name ‘Stamford Hill’ as it makes its way through the area. The hill is believed to be named after the ford where the A10 crossed the Hackney Brook on the southern edge of the hill. Sanford and Saundfordhill are referred to in documents from the 1200s and mean ‘sand ford’. Roque's map of 1745 shows a bridge, which replaced the ford, referred to as ‘Stamford Bridge’; the hill rises from the former course of the Hackney Brook to the south, its steeper northern slope provided a natural boundary for the traditional extent of Hackney, now does so for the wider modern borough. Stamford Hill lies on the old Roman road of Ermine Street, on the high ground where it meets the Clapton Road which runs from central Hackney.

By the 18th century, the Roman road was subject to heavy traffic, including goods wagons pulled by six or more horses, this caused the surface of the road to deteriorate. The local parishes appealed to Parliament in 1713 for the right to set up a Turnpike Trust, to pay for repairs and maintenance. Gates were installed at Stamford Hill to collect the tolls. Roque's map of 1745 shows a handful of buildings around the Turnpike, by 1795 the A10 was lined with the large homes and extensive grounds of wealthy financiers and merchants attracted, in part, by the elevated position. Stamford Hill had a gibbet, used to display the remains of criminals, executed at Tyburn in the 1740s. In 1765, a map of the area showed the Gibbet Field south of the road from Clapton Common, behind Cedar House; the area remained rural in character and little more was built until the arrival of the railway in 1872 and the tram system at about the same time. Stamford Hill was the point where the tram line coming north from the City met the Hackney tram line, so it became a busy interchange, with a depot opening in 1873.

Electrification commenced in 1902 and by 1924 a service was commenced between Stamford Hill and Camden Town along Amhurst Park. Stamford Hill had many eminent Jewish residents, including the Montefiore family. Italian-born Moses Vita Montefiore was living there in 1763, his son Joseph married Rachel Mocatta, his grandson Abraham Montefiore married Henrietta whose father, the financier Nathan Meyer Rothschild, lived near the modern Colberg Place from 1818 to 1835. The Montefiores' property a little further south was to be transformed by Abraham's grandson, Claude Montefiore, into Montefiore House school. With the increased development of the area, many distinguished families moved away: in 1842 there were few remaining of the wealthy Jews who had once settled in Hackney; the philanthropist and abolitionist MP Samuel Morley had a residence here from about 1860. The gardening writer and cottage gardener Margery Fish was born Margery Townshend in Stamford Hill in 1892. From the 1880s, a new influx of Jews arrived from Stepney in the East End and, in 1915, the New Synagogue was transferred to Stamford Hill to serve this growing population.

In 1926, the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations was established in Stamford Hill, this became a magnet for other observant Jews, many fleeing Nazi persecution in the years before the Second World War. Many Jewish families came to the area from other areas of London, refugees in their own way from bombing and post-war clearances for new housing. One of the early Hasidic leaders in Stamford Hill was the Shotzer Rebbe; the Hungarian uprising led to an influx of Haredi Jews fleeing hardship under Soviet rule. Another notable Jewish resident from 1955 until his death in 2000, was the spiritual head of the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations, Rabbi Chanoch Dov Padwa. Stamford Hill has never been an administrative area in its own right. Hackney was an administrative unit with consistent boundaries from the early Middle Ages to the creation of the larger modern borough in 1965. Hackney was based for many centuries on the Ancient Parish of Hackney Parishes in Middlesex were grouped into Hundreds, with Hackney part of Ossulstone Hundred.

Rapid Population growth around London saw the Hundred split into several'Divisions' during the 1600s, with Hackney part of the Tower Division. The Tower Division was noteworthy in that the men of the area owed military service to the Tower of London - and had done before the creation of the Division; the Ancient Parishes provided a framework for both civil and ecclesiastical functions, but during the nineteenth century there was a divergence into distinct civil and ecclesiastical parish systems. In London the Ecclesiastical Parishes sub-divided to better serve the needs of a growing population, while the Civil Parishes continued to be based on the same Ancient Parish areas; the London Government Act 1899 converted the parishes into Metropolitan Boroughs based on the same boundaries, sometimes with minor rationalisations. In 1965, Hackney merged with Shoreditch and Stoke Newington to form the new London Borough of Hackney; the area's usual definition is based on the physical feature of the hill and the neighbourhood's location within the Ancient Parish and subsequent Metropolitan Borough of Hackney.

Reflecting that the Roman A10 takes the name ‘Stamford Hill’ as goes over the hill between the br


Gadolinium is a chemical element with the symbol Gd and atomic number 64. Gadolinium is a silvery-white metal, it is only malleable and is a ductile rare-earth element. Gadolinium reacts with atmospheric oxygen or moisture to form a black coating. Gadolinium below its Curie point of 20 °C is ferromagnetic, with an attraction to a magnetic field higher than that of nickel. Above this temperature it is the most paramagnetic element, it is found in nature only in an oxidized form. When separated, it has impurities of the other rare-earths because of their similar chemical properties. Gadolinium was discovered in 1880 by Jean Charles de Marignac, who detected its oxide by using spectroscopy, it is named after the mineral gadolinite, one of the minerals in which gadolinium is found, itself named for the chemist Johan Gadolin. Pure gadolinium was first isolated by the chemist Paul Emile Lecoq de Boisbaudran around 1886. Gadolinium possesses unusual metallurgical properties, to the extent that as little as 1% of gadolinium can improve the workability and resistance to oxidation at high temperatures of iron and related metals.

Gadolinium as a metal or a salt absorbs neutrons and is, used sometimes for shielding in neutron radiography and in nuclear reactors. Like most of the rare earths, gadolinium forms trivalent ions with fluorescent properties, salts of gadolinium are used as phosphors in various applications; the kinds of gadolinium ions occurring in water-soluble salts are toxic to mammals. However, chelated gadolinium compounds are far less toxic because they carry gadolinium through the kidneys and out of the body before the free ion can be released into the tissues; because of its paramagnetic properties, solutions of chelated organic gadolinium complexes are used as intravenously administered gadolinium-based MRI contrast agents in medical magnetic resonance imaging. Gadolinium is a silvery-white, ductile rare-earth element, it crystallizes in the hexagonal close-packed α-form at room temperature, when heated to temperatures above 1,235 °C, it transforms into its β-form, which has a body-centered cubic structure.

The isotope gadolinium-157 has the highest thermal-neutron capture cross-section among any stable nuclide: about 259,000 barns. Only xenon-135 has a higher capture cross-section, about 2.0 million barns, but this isotope is radioactive. Gadolinium is believed to be ferromagnetic at temperatures below 20 °C and is paramagnetic above this temperature. There is evidence that gadolinium is a helical antiferromagnetic, rather than a ferromagnetic, below 20 °C. Gadolinium demonstrates a magnetocaloric effect whereby its temperature increases when it enters a magnetic field and decreases when it leaves the magnetic field; the temperature is lowered to 5 °C for the gadolinium alloy Gd85Er15, this effect is stronger for the alloy Gd5, but at a much lower temperature. A significant magnetocaloric effect is observed at higher temperatures, up to about 300 kelvins, in the compounds Gd54. Individual gadolinium atoms can be isolated by encapsulating them into fullerene molecules, where they can be visualized with a transmission electron microscope.

Individual Gd atoms and small Gd clusters can be incorporated into carbon nanotubes. Gadolinium combines with most elements to form Gd derivatives, it combines with nitrogen, sulfur, boron, selenium and arsenic at elevated temperatures, forming binary compounds. Unlike the other rare-earth elements, metallic gadolinium is stable in dry air. However, it tarnishes in moist air, forming a loosely-adhering gadolinium oxide: 4 Gd + 3 O2 → 2 Gd2O3,which spalls off, exposing more surface to oxidation. Gadolinium is a strong reducing agent. Gadolinium is quite electropositive and reacts with cold water and quite with hot water to form gadolinium hydroxide: 2 Gd + 6 H2O → 2 Gd3 + 3 H2. Gadolinium metal is attacked by dilute sulfuric acid to form solutions containing the colorless Gd ions, which exist as 3+ complexes: 2 Gd + 3 H2SO4 + 18 H2O → 2 3+ + 3 SO2−4 + 3 H2. Gadolinium metal reacts with the halogens at temperature about 200 °C: 2 Gd + 3 X2 → 2 GdX3. In the great majority of its compounds, gadolinium adopts the oxidation state +3.

All four trihalides are known. All are white, except for the iodide, yellow. Most encountered of the halides is gadolinium chloride; the oxide dissolves in acids to give the salts, such as gadolinium nitrate. Gadolinium, like most lanthanide ions, forms complexes with high coordination numbers; this tendency is illustrated by the use of the chelating agent DOTA, an octadentate ligand. Salts of − are useful in magnetic resonance imaging. A variety of related chelate complexes have been developed, including gadodiamide. Reduced gadolinium compounds are known in the solid state. Gadolinium halides are obtained by heating Gd halides in presence of metallic Gd in tantalum containers. Gadolinium form sesquichloride Gd2Cl3, which can be further reduced to GdCl by annealing at 800 °C; this gadolinium chloride forms platelets with layered graphite-like structure. Occurring gadolinium is composed of six stable isotopes, 154Gd, 155Gd, 156Gd, 157Gd, 158Gd and 160Gd, one radioisotope, 152Gd, with the isotope 158Gd being the most abundant.

The predicted double beta decay of 160Gd has never been observed (an experimental lower limit on its half-life of more than 1.3×1021 years has b

Battle of Ong Thanh

The Battle of Ong Thanh was fought at the stream of that name on the morning of 17 October 1967, in Chơn Thành District, at the time part of Bình Dương Province, South Vietnam, today in Bình Phước Province. During the first few months of 1967, the Viet Cong absorbed heavy losses as a result of large-scale search and destroy missions conducted by the United States Army, it prompted North Vietnamese leaders to review their war strategy in South Vietnam. In light of the setbacks which People's Army of Vietnam and VC forces had experienced early in 1967, PAVN General Trần Văn Trà suggested that PAVN and VC forces could still be victorious if they inflicted as many casualties as possible on U. S. military units, hoping that the Americans would conclude that the war was too costly and withdraw from Vietnam. Thus, towards mid-1967, the VC 7th and 9th Divisions returned to the battlefield again, with the objective of inflicting casualties on U. S. military formations in III Corps. On June 12, the U.

S. 1st Infantry Division launched Operation Billings to destroy elements of the VC 9th Division, which had built-up strength around northern Phước Vĩnh. When the operation concluded on June 26, the 1st Infantry Division had lost 57 killed while the VC had lost 347 killed. In September, following a string of attacks on allied military installations by VC and PAVN troops, Major General John H. Hay decided to temporarily stop conducting large-scale operations until the true intentions of PAVN/VC forces were known. Towards October, the VC 271st Regiment marched into the Long Nguyen Secret Zone, to rest and refit for their next major operation. To disrupt the VC's resting period, General Hay launched Operation Shenandoah II to clear a section of Highway 13 which stretched from Chơn Thành to Lộc Ninh. Starting from 28 September, elements of the 1st Infantry Division were air-lifted into positions around Long Nguyen, but again only few contacts were made with the VC. However, on 16 October, the 2nd Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment found a major VC bunker system located south of their night defensive position near the Ong Thanh Stream, a short fire fight broke out.

To avoid fighting a long battle, the commander of the 2nd Battalion decided to pull back, made preparations for a frontal assault on the next day. On the morning of 17 October, two rifle companies of the 2nd Battalion returned to the bunker system they had found the previous day, but they were defeated by the VC 271st Regiment which had set up an ambush in anticipation of the American attack. In the first half of 1967, United States military forces in Vietnam had inflicted losses on the VC, both in terms of infrastructure and manpower, through major ground operations such as Cedar Falls, Junction City and Manhattan. For North Vietnamese military leaders such as Generals Võ Nguyên Giáp and Nguyễn Chí Thanh, the operations carried out by the Americans in South Vietnam had been disastrous for their forces. Furthermore, the military situation in North Vietnam prompted North Vietnamese leaders to question their war strategy. In 1967 the United States expanded their Rolling Thunder bombing campaign, which enabled American airpower to destroy rather than just threaten Hanoi's limited industrial infrastructure.

North Vietnamese leaders feared that if the Red River dikes were targeted by the Americans and the surrounding farmlands would be flooded. At the same time, the North Vietnamese government was afraid the VC may split in order to accommodate a resolution with the Saigon government, because the U. S.-backed government in the South was showing no sign of collapse. Despite the unfavorable developments in South Vietnam, PAVN General Trần Văn Trà believed North Vietnam could still win the war if they pursued a strategy of attrition. In other words, the PAVN/VC would have to fight on for as long as possible, until the United States recognized that the war was unwinnable and would disengage from the conflict in Vietnam. To achieve that objective at the tactical level, Tra argued that PAVN and VC forces would have to destroy American military units, cause as many casualties as possible until they got tired and left. Indeed, towards mid-1967 General Thanh, who had the VC 7th and 9th Division at his disposal, was out to do just that.

In June, U. S. military forces in III Corps began to detect the build-up of VC troops in northern Phước Vĩnh located War Zone D. To stop a major enemy attack on Phước Vĩnh, Major General John H. Hay—commander of the 1st Infantry Division launched Operation Billings with the objective of trapping three VC battalions in War Zone D. On June 26, Operation Billings concluded, the Americans killed 347 VC and captured one, at a cost of 57 U. S. dead and 197 wounded. In August, the VC were back in action again. Just after midnight on 7 August, the 165th Regiment attacked Tong Le Chon and was able to penetrate the Camp, but was forced to flee after an ammunition bunker exploded; that night the VC assaulted the base several times more, but on each occasion they were repelled by artillery fire and close air-support. By September, the scale of VC and PAVN activities in III Corps had perplexed the U. S. commanders of Military Assistance Command, Vietnam. In the meantime, Hay decided to put an end to large-scale operations which had proven to be unproductive, until the enemy's real intentions were known.

Instead, Hay continued to commit his 2nd Brigade to pacification efforts in southern Bình Dương Province, while the 3rd Brigade provided protection for engineers clearing Highway 13. Following various engagements with the U. S. 1st Infantry Division during the previous months, Colonel Vo Minh Triet, commander of