Wikipedia:Main Page history/2012 March 5

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Map of the route taken by the Allied forces on the campaign

The Battle of Barrosa (5 March 1811) was an unsuccessful French attack on a larger Anglo-Portuguese-Spanish force attempting to lift the siege of Cádiz in Spain during the Peninsular War. Cádiz had been invested by the French in early 1810, but in March of the following year a reduction in the besieging army gave its garrison of Anglo-Spanish troops an opportunity to lift the siege. A large Allied strike-force was shipped south from Cádiz to Tarifa, and moved to engage the siege lines from the rear. The French, under the command of Marshal Victor, were aware of the Allied movement and redeployed to prepare a trap. Victor placed one division on the road to Cádiz, blocking the Allied line of march, while his two remaining divisions fell on the single Anglo-Portuguese rearguard division under the command of Sir Thomas Graham. Following a fierce battle on two fronts, the British succeeded in routing the attacking French forces. A lack of support from the larger Spanish contingent prevented an absolute victory, and the French were able to regroup and reoccupy their siege lines. Graham's tactical victory proved to have little strategic effect on the continuing war, to the extent that Victor was able to claim the battle as a French victory since the siege remained in force until finally being lifted on 24 August 1812. (more...)

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St Michael's Mount, favoured by some scholars as the location of Ictis

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March 5: St Piran's Day in Cornwall (United Kingdom); Casimir Pulaski Day in Illinois (2012); Lei Feng Day in the People's Republic of China

Boston Massacre engraving by Paul Revere

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Drawn poster showing a white geyser of water shooting into a blue sky. Top caption: Ranger Naturalist Service, Nature walks, Field trips, Camp fire programs, Nature talks. Bottom caption: Yellowstone National Park, U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service.

There are 58 national parks of the United States operated by the National Park Service, an agency of the Department of the Interior. National parks must be established by an act of the United States Congress. The first of these protected areas, Yellowstone National Park, was signed into law by President Ulysses S. Grant in 1872, followed by Sequoia and Yosemite in 1890. The Organic Act of 1916 created the National Park Service "to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and wildlife therein, and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations." These parks combined protect more than 51,900,000 acres (210,000 km2) in twenty-seven states and two territories, and they preserve a variety of resources including canyons, mountains, glaciers, deserts, lakes, caves, forests, and valleys. The newest national park is Great Sand Dunes, established in 2004, which like many other national parks was previously a national monument. (more...)

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Tungsten rods with evaporated crystals, partially oxidized with colorful tarnish, as well as a 1 cm3 tungsten cube for comparison. Tungsten is a hard, rare metal under standard conditions when uncombined, but is found naturally on Earth only in chemical compounds. Its chemical symbol is W, which represents its alternative name, "wolfram".

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