Tag Archives: peace & war issues

June ~ Election Year 1912

Woman making American Flag

The Monroe Doctrine is alive and well as the United States intervenes in Cuba and exploits Mexico. Natural disasters and man-made accidents take lives and do damage. The Republicans spurn former president Roosevelt and nominate Taft for re-election. At the end of the month, the Democratic National Convention remains in session, looking like Speaker of the House Clark will win the nomination instead of Governor Wilson. Both parties go on record in oppopsition to corporate donations to political campaigns.The issues of working people draw attention. Law and politics make news around the world.

June 1– Saturday– New York City– Waiters from 17 major restaurants are on strike, demanding regular wages in place of tips from patrons. The strike was organized by Joseph James Ettor and Elizabeth Gurley Flynn of the Industrial Workers of the World, both key helpers to the textile workers who went out on strike in Lawrence, Massachusetts, back in January of the year.

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Elizabeth Gurley Flynn on the podium

 

June 1– Saturday– near Lake Opinicon, Ontario, Canada– Premature detonation of dynamite kills 18 men working on construction of the Canadian Northern road.

June 1– Saturday– Heidelberg, Germany– Daniel Hudson Burnham, age 65, American pioneer urban planner and architect, designer of Chicago’s Montauk Building [at 10 stories high it was the city’s first distinctly tall building] and the chief planner of the buildings for the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893, dies while traveling in Europe with his sons.

June 1– Saturday– Fez, Morocco– French troops open fire with artillery, killing 600 Moroccan lightly armed tribesmen who had marched to protest French presence in the country.

June 2– Sunday– Brussels, Belgium– General elections result in a victory for the Catholic Party, led by Charles de Broqueville (age 51), which wins 101 of the 186 seats in the Chamber of Representatives and 54 of the 93 seats in the Senate. [The Catholic Party gained majority control of the government in 1884 and will hold its majority until 1918.]

June 3– Monday– South Orange, New Jersey– Margaret Elizabeth Munson Sangster, author and magazine editor, dies from a cerebral thrombosis at age 74.

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Margaret Elizabeth Sangster

 

June 3– Monday– Hampton Roads, Virginia– President Taft welcomes a visit by German warships, led by the battle cruiser SMS Moltke.

June 4– Tuesday– Boston, Massachusetts– The state becomes the first in the United States to pass a law authorizing a guaranteed minimum wage. The law will take effect on July 1, 1913, applies only to women and children, and provides that a state commission will issue regulations and the penalties for its violation are light.

June 5– Wednesday– Washington, D.C.– George S. Nixon, age 52, Republican U.S. Senator for Nevada since 1905, dies from an infection following surgery.

June 5– Wednesday– Mexico City, Mexico– President Francisco I. Madero and the Standard Oil Company agreed to “one of the most one-sided business concessions imaginable” with Standard Oil being allowed to operate in Mexico tax free for ten years, and the rights to eminent domain over any private or public property it wished to obtain to support its oil fields in four Mexican states.

June 5–Wednesday– Havana, Cuba–American Marines, 570 in number, land in order to protect American interests.

U S Marines ~1912

U S Marines 1912

 

June 6– Thursday– Kodiak Island Borough, Alaska– The Mount Katmai volcano erupts, dumping a foot of ashes at Kodiak and killing hundreds of people, wiping out the populations of seven villages.

June 7–Friday– Gulf of Mexico– The first hurricane of the season forms. It will make landfall near Intracoastal City, Louisiana, causing minimal damage.

June 7– Friday– Rome, Italy– Pope Pius X issues an encyclical to the Catholic bishops of South America calling upon them to stop exploitation of the Indian peoples, which includes slave trade, by people motivated by “the lust of lucre”.

June 8– Saturday– Washington, D.C.– At the unveiling of a monument to Christopher Columbus President Taft eulogizes Columbus as “the greatest mariner in history” as he addresses an audience of 100,000 people, many of them members of the Knights of Columbus.

June 10– Monday– East Walpole, Massachusetts– Birth of Mary Lavin, American-born Irish novelist, short-story writer and feminist. [Dies March 25, 1996.]

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Mary Lavin

 

June 10– Monday– New Orleans, Louisiana– Sophie Wright, educator and welfare worker, dies from heart disease at 46 years of age.

June 10– Monday– Havana, Cuba– The cruiser USS Washington and the battleship USS Rhode Island arrive to support the Marines protecting American interests.

June 10– Monday– St Petersburg, Russia– Tsar Nicholas II of Russia pardons Kate Malecka, on condition that she leave the country forever. Malecka, of Polish and British parentage, had been sentenced to four years imprisonment for aiding secessionists in Poland. The British public and elements of the British government have pressed for her release.

June 11– Tuesday– Bar Harbor, Maine– Elizabeth Kimball Hobson, philanthropist, welfare worker and advocate of educational reform, dies at 80 years of age.

June 11– Tuesday– London, England– For the first time in the Parliamentary debates over the Irish Home Rule question, the proposal is made by MP Thomas Agar-Robartes to treat northeast Ireland differently from the rest of the island. He offers an amendment to exclude the predominantly Protestant counties of Antrim, Armagh, Down and Londonderry from Home Rule.

June 12– Wednesday– Dalton, Georgia– Three people are killed and 30 others injured in the wreck of a passenger train.

June 12– Wednesday– Neuilly-sur-Seine, France– Frederic Passy, economist, author, educator, peace advocate, and co-winner, with Henry Dunant, of the first Nobel Peace Prize in1901, dies at 90 years of age.

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Frederic Passy

 

June 15– Saturday– Kansas City, Missouri– A tornado sweeps through Bates, Johnson and Henry Counties, killing 26 people and injuring more than 50 others.

June 17– Monday– Washington, D.C.– President Taft vetoes the Army appropriation bill that had been passed by Congress with cuts to defense spending. The President says, “The army of the United States is far too vital an institution to the people of this country to be made the victim of hasty or imperfect theories of legislation.” It is reported that Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson had threatened to resign if the bill was not vetoed.

June 17– Monday– Ottawa, Ontario, Canada– The Supreme Court of Canada holds that Parliament could not pass a national law governing marriage, and that mixed marriages of persons from different religious faiths solemnized by Protestant clergy can not be outlawed.

June 18– Tuesday– Chicago, Illinois– The Republican National Convention opens with incumbent President Taft having 454 ½ committed delegates, former President Theodore Roosevelt having 469 ½ committed delegates and 239 claimed by both sides. With a simple majority (513 of 1026) required to win the nomination, the awarding of the contested delegates is critical to the nomination. The Republican National Committee, controlled by Taft’s supporters, resolves the matter by finding 6 in favor of Roosevelt, and the other 233 in favor of Taft.

June 18– Tuesday– Hastings, Colorado– An explosion at the Victor-American Fuel Company mine kills twelve coal miners.

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Mine explosion

 

June 19– Wednesday– Washington, D.C.– President Taft signed into law a provision that workers on U.S. government contracts are limited to an eight-hour day.

June 20– Thursday– St Petersburg, Russia– The State Duma votes in favor of a £50,000,000 program to increase the size of the Russian Navy over the next five years.

June 20– Thursday– Chicago, Illinois– Voltairine de Cleyre, age 45, anarchist, feminist, orator and prolific writer, dies of meningitis.

June 21– Friday– Chicago, Illinois– The Republican Party finalizes its platform which favors “all measures for the establishment and protection of the peace of the world”, an international court of justice, establishment of the Federal Trade Commission, strong enforcement of laws against monopoly, continuation of tariff protections against foreign goods and foods, support of “a prompt scientific inquiry into the causes” of the high cost of living, “a sound currency and . . . safe banking methods” along with the establishment of organizations to loan money to farmers, enforcement of civil service laws and regulations, the establishment of pensions for elderly and disabled civil service workers, prohibition of corporations making campaign contributions, conservation of natural resources, establishment of a parcel post system, construction of additional warships for the Navy, improvement of rivers and harbors, an end to “the constantly growing evil of induced or undesirable immigration”, and greater efficiency in the financial affairs of government.

June 22– Saturday– Chicago, Illinois– President William Howard Taft receives the Republican Party nomination, by a vote of 561 to 107, after 344 of the delegates refused, out of protest, to participate in the vote. The aggrieved delegates are primarily supporters of former President Theodore Roosevelt. Robert M. LaFollette received 41votes and Albert B. Cummins received17. Roosevelt has left the convention and proposes to form a new Progressive Party. Hiram Johnson, Governor of California and also a progressive Republican, voices support for Roosevelt’s third party movement.

June 23– Sunday– Grand Island, New York– Over 100 people fall into the swiftly moving waters of the Niagara River when a dock collapses. Thirty-nine drown or are hurled over Niagra Falls several miles away. Three of the dead are children under 10 years of age.

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victims of the dock collapse

 

June 24– Monday– Washington, D.C.– President Taft implements the first specific regulations governing the proportions and design of the flag of the United States, with the signing of an Executive Order. The President accepted the recommendation of a committee, chaired by former Admiral George Dewey, hero of the war with Spain and now 74 years old, for the new, 48 star flag, to be arranged in six rows of eight stars each.

June 24– Monday– Paris, France– Julia Richman, American educator, author, school principal and administrator, dies at 56 years of age during a visit to Europe.

June 25–Tuesday– Baltimore, Maryland–The Democratic National Convention opens at the Fifth Regiment Armory with 1,095 voting delegates present. The main contenders are House Speaker Champ Clark of Missouri and Governor Woodrow Wilson of New Jersey. Both Speaker Clark and Governor Wilson have won a number of primaries. Although Clark enters the convention with more pledged delegates than does Wilson, he lacks the two thirds vote necessary to win the nomination.

June 26– Wednesday– Southampton, England– The R M S Olympic, a sister ship to the Titanic, sets sail for the United States with 397 passengers on board. In response to the Titanic disaster, Olympic carries additional lifeboats.

June 27– Thursday– Baltimore, Maryland– The Democratic Party’s platform favors tariff reform, enforcement of anti-trust laws, states’ rights, prohibiting corporate contributions to political campaigns, “efficient supervision and rate regulation of railroads, express companies, telegraph and telephone lines engaged in interstate commerce”, federal appropriations for vocational education in agriculture, construction of post roads, extension of rural mail delivery, the right of workers to organize, creation of a department of labor, the development of workers’ compensation laws, conservation of natural resources, strengthening of pure food and public health laws, and rigid enforcement of civil service laws while opposing Republican high tariffs which have created excessive prices in common goods and “imperialism and colonial exploitation in the Phillippines or elsewhere.”

June 27– Thursday– Miraca, Cuba– Soldiers of the Cuban Army kill Evaristo Estenoz, leader of the uprising of Afro-Cuban rebels, in battle. His death brings an end to the uprising, which had caused the killing of 3,000 black Cubans.

June 28– Friday– Baltimore, Maryland– On the first ballot at the Democratic Party convention, former House Speaker Champ Clark received 440 ½ votes, New Jersey Governor Woodrow Wilson 324, Judson Harmon 148, Oscar Underwood 117 ½ and Thomas R. Marshall 31.

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Champ Clark 1912

 

June 29– Saturday– Baltimore, Maryland– Champ Clark moves closer to the Democratic nomination for President, when a shift of votes from the New York delegation gives him 556 votes, more than all of the other candidates combined, but still short of the two-thirds (730) needed to win. However, the New York support has come through the machinations of Tammany Hall Democrats from New York City. This infuriates William Jennings Bryan who remains a leader of the progressive wing of the party. Bryan introduces a motion which says “As proof of our fidelity to the people, we hereby declare ourselves opposed to the nomination of any candidate for President who is the representative of or under any obligation to J. Pierpont Morgan, Thomas F. Ryan, August Belmont, or any other member of the privilege-hunting and favor-seeking class.” Bryan switches his support to Woodrow Wilson.

June 29– Saturday– La Crosse, Wisconsin– Birth of John Toland, historian, [Dies January 4, 2004.]

June 30– Sunday– Baltimore, Maryland– On the 30th ballot, Woodrow Wilson edges slightly ahead of Champ Clark for the first time, with 460 votes to 455 for Clark, as the Iowa delegation swings its support to Wilson.

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Regina YMCA destroyed

 

June 30– Sunday– Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada– At about 4:50 in the afternoon green funnel clouds form and touch down south of the city, tearing a swath through the residential area between Wascana Lake and Victoria Avenue and the downtown business district. The twister kills 28 people, injures several hundreds, and leaves about 2500 people homeless. Approximately 500 buildings are destroyed or damaged. Property damage totals $1.2 million Canadian. [It remains the deadliest tornado in Canadian history.]

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Election Year 1856 ~ April

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Political issues taking the forefront: slavery, the conflict in Kansas, the rise of a new political party. Women assert their claims on civil rights, much to the distress of some men. Within abolitionist circles, the debate intensifies about non-violence versus the use of force. Peace has brought an end to the carnage of the Crimean War, a loss of life soon to be over-shadowed by America’s Civil War. Divisions manifest themselves among Democrats over who should be the nominee for president. The escapades of the freebooter William Walker draw some favorable attention in the United States at a time when many have imperialistic dreams of controlling the whole of the Western Hemisphere. His conduct angers Great Britain which has led to some talk of war with the United States. Anti-Catholic and anti-immigrant talk find voice in print.

April 1– Tuesday– Richmond, Indiana– “Man alone is but a piece– a fragment– a half of humanity, and he needs the other half by his side, with her smiles and indomitable fortitude, to strengthen his resolutions and share his aspirations and his toils. He will go heavenward when angel woman points the way, and cheers his path with the light of her genius, the power of her example, and the fascinations of her own loveliness. But when he attempts to go alone, he is too apt to go devilward, as he generally has done in political affairs. Could educated woman become an equal arbiter in the fate of nations, especially of this nation, soon indeed would the brain maddening and bloody traffic in alcoholic liquors be prohibited. Soon, too, would the gigantic wrong of American slavery be abolished. It would be no longer necessary for tender mothers to cut their children’s throats to protect them from the hellish despotism in a land which claims to be ‘the asylum of the oppressed, and the home of the free!’” ~ The Lily.

April 3– Thursday– Island of Rhodes– The Ottoman Turks who control the island use the Church of St John, attached to the almost 500 year old Palace of the Grand Masters, as a storehouse for ammunition. Today lightning strikes the church causing a fire and explosion which kills about 4,000 people and turns the two buildings into a huge pile of rubble

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April 4– Friday– Boston, Massachusetts– “The Twenty-Third Public Anniversary of the American Anti-Slavery Society will be held . . . In the city of New York, on Wednesday, May 7th, at 10 o’clock, A.M. . . . . As full an attendance of the members and friends of the Society as practicable, from all parts of the country, is earnestly desired and strongly urged. We reiterate our former declaration, that the object of the Society is not merely to make Liberty national and Slavery sectional, nor to prevent the acquisition of Cuba nor to restore the Missouri Compromise nor to repeal the Fugitive Slave Bill nor to make Kansas a free State nor to resist the admission of any new slave State into the Union nor to terminate slavery in the District of Columbia and in the National Territories but it is, primarily, Comprehensively, and uncompromisingly to effect the immediate, total and eternal overthrow of Slavery, wherever it exists on American soil, and to expose and confront whatever party or sect seeks to purchase peace or success at the expense of human liberty. Living or dying, our motto is, ‘No Union With Slaveholders, Religiously or Politically!’” ~ The Liberator.

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members of the American Antislavery Society

 

April 5– Saturday– New York City– New York Times quotes likely Democratic candidate James Buchanan as writing “The Missouri Compromise [of 1820] is gone, and gone forever. . . . The time for it has passed away, and I verily believe that the best– nay the only– mode now of putting down the fanatical and restless spirit of Abolition at the North, is to adhere to the existing settlement [the Compromise of 1850] without the slightest thought or appearance of wavering, and without regarding any storm which may be raised against it.”

April 9– Wednesday– Newark, New Jersey– A large number of people attend an organizing rally to create a state-wide Republican Party. Participants insist upon the admission of Kansas as a free state. “New Jersey will enroll herself among the ranks of the Freemen of the Union in the approaching struggle.”

April 9– Wednesday– Washington, D.C.– “Senators of the free States, I appeal to you. Believe the prophets, I know you do. You know then, that Slavery neither works mines and quarries, nor founds cities, nor builds ships, nor levies armies, nor mans navies. Why, then, will you insist closing up this new Territory of Kansas, against all enriching streams of immigration, while you pour into it the turbid and poisonous waters of African Slavery? Which one of you all, whether of Connecticut, or of Pennsylvania, or of Illinois, or of Michigan, would consent thus to extinguish the chief light of civilization within the State in which your own fortunes are cast, and in which your own posterity are to live?” ~ Speech in the Senate by Senator William H Seward, age 54, of New York.

April 10– Thursday– New York City– “The people of this country already knew that Colonel [John C] Fremont was one of the boldest and most indomitable men who have explored our wilderness, and marked out the path of empire; but only his intimate friends knew how heartily and thoroughly he sympathized in every movement towards freedom and the emancipation of the country from an unscrupulous and oppressive oligarchy. There is no equivocation or hesitation in Colonel Fremont’s declaration of sentiments, as regards the [free state] Government of Kansas.” ~ New York Times.

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John C Fremont

 

April 10– Thursday– New Orleans, Louisiana– A ship with 200 recruits leaves to join the force of the freebooter William Walker in Nicaragua.

April 11– Friday– Boston, Massachusetts– In response to the Reverend Henry Ward Beecher’s assertion that a Sharp’s rifle is a better argument against slavery than the Bible and his defense of the practice of sending guns to Northern settlers in Kansas, in today’s issue of The Liberator William Lloyd Garrison writes: “The rhetoric . . . is very fine, and the spirit of it as tender and magnanimous at is compatible with a deadly use of Sharp’s rifles. Mr. Beecher says, ‘There are times when self-defense is a religious duty’– but not with murderous weapons, we beg leave to add. Are there no times when martyrdom becomes such a duty from which one ‘cannot shrink, without leaving honor, manhood, and Christian fidelity behind’? ‘But I say unto you, Overcome evil with good. They that take the sword shall perish with the sword.’ The weapons of our struggle are not carnal.”

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a Sharp’s rifle

 

April 11– Friday– Rivas, Nicaragua– Costa Rican forces defeat the soldiers of the American mercenary and freebooter William Walker[ 1824-1860]. On Walker and his crimes and misdeeds, see, By-ways of War; the Story of the Filibusters (1901) by James J Roche; Filibusters and Financiers; the Story of William Walker and His Associates (1916) by William O Scroggs; William Walker, Filibuster (1932) by Merritt Parmelee Allen; The Filibuster: the Career of William Walker (1937) by Laurence Greene.

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William Walker

 

April 12– Saturday– New York City– “That Walker is selected as the instrument of important changes in Central and perhaps Southern America, we have a strong conviction. All the circumstances attendant upon his recent acts point to that result. The moderation which he has exhibited in his dealings with the other Central States, whilst it has won for him the respect and good will of the liberal portion of their populations, has only been regarded by their rulers as a proof of weakness. The Costa Rican government, with a fatuity which will be looked upon as suicidal, has thought fit to declare war against the man who holds its fate in his hands, and whose forbearance constituted its only security. Ere many weeks elapse, Costa Rica will in all probability be annexed to Nicaragua, under . . . Walker’s . . . sway, thereby forming the first link in the chain of a powerful Central American confederation. It is likely that this event will operate as a salutary lesson upon the other States; but if it should not, their hostility will only hasten the consummation of an object which all friends of liberty must regard as holding out the only hope of salvation for Central America.” ~ Frank Leslies Weekly

April 12– Saturday– California, Missouri– A sale of slaves includes a 5 year old boy for $505, a 7 year old boy for $886, a 10 year old boy for $1,015 and a 26 year old woman with her 18 month old child for $1355. [The $1355 would be the equivalent of $39,000 today, using the Consumer Price Index.]

April 15– Tuesday– Richmond, Indiana– “I would like to know if a woman does not need as much property to support a family of children as a man, who gets higher wages for labor? But no; they deprive her of property, reduce her wages, and then compel her to wear away her life in unremitting toil, for a mere pittance, to provide for herself and her helpless children. Now, I ask, what justice is there in this? It is no wonder that people blush at the name of Slavery! I do not intend to cast reflections upon all; for I am sure that we have some true and earnest friends– even among gentlemen– who consider that women are capable of fulfilling a higher mission than what is generally assigned them. But I do censure our unjust rulers, who pride themselves in revelry and drunkenness and he is considered the greatest hero, who can display the most vulgarity, and trample upon the rights of his fellow men!” ~ letter from Almira M. Smith in today’s The Lily.

April 18– Friday– Boston, Massachusetts– “To the exclusion of much other matter designed for our present [edition], we publish entire, (with the exception, of a small portion of the testimony which he adduced in support of his positions, as given by both parties in Kansas,) the very able, eloquent, comprehensive statesman-like speech of the Hon. William H. Seward, delivered in the U.S. Senate [April 9th] on the Kansas question. We are sure our subscribers will be eager to peruse it. Its arraignment of the President is bold, direct, explicit, worthy of the days of ‘76.” ~ The Liberator.

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William Seward

 

April 18– Friday– New York City– In response to a piece in the Richmond [Virginia] Enquirer which praises border ruffians as “the noblest type of mankind” and that without slavery that some white men will be reduced to the status of European peasants as “mere hereditary bondsmen” the New York Times comments “No solitary reason can be urged for extending Slavery into Kansas which would not have equal weight in favor of reducing to slavery the laboring classes in every Northern State.”

April 19– Saturday– New York City– “As the question of the probability of hostilities between this country and Great Britain has been happily set at rest by the common sense of the people of both, it hardly seems worth while to discuss any of the collateral issues raised by it. And yet there is a consideration which has been extensively made use of in the discussion of its chances, to which it may be useful, in view of future contingencies, to devote a few remarks. . . . Canada has now but little if any thing to gain by annexation to the United States. It enjoys as much of the privileges of self-government as it would do as a member of the Union, and commercially speaking, it is a question whether it could derive any additional advantages from the connection. We do not see in what respect we ourselves should be benefitted by it. The Canadian [provinces] would, to be sure, bring us a large additional territory, but of this we have enough as it is. We must not forget to balance against this acquisition the fact that it would also bring us a large French population, the most difficult of any to assimilate with our own, and with their religion likely to prove a troublesome element in our present political condition. We incline to the opinion that Canada is much more useful to us as it is than it could possibly be if it were a member of the Union. It serves as a sort of debatable land to which the discontented spirits who come out here from Europe, and who cannot settle down under republican institutions, may retire as a sort of compromise between their new prejudices and their old hatreds. We are best rid of such people. They only breed disorder and trouble amongst us, and it is, therefore, an advantage to have neighbors who are ready to take them off our hands.” ~ Frank Leslies Weekly

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Anna Sarah Kugler

 

April 19– Saturday– Ardmore, Pennsylvania– Birth of Anna Sarah Kugler, who will become a physician and serve as a Lutheran medical missionary to India from 1883 until her death on July 20, 1930.

April 20– Sunday– Springfield, Massachusetts– “Most heartily do I join with those friends of peace and good will, whose thank-offerings have, through the last number of The Liberator, been so cordially poured out to you for your most triumphant vindication of the heaven-descended doctrine of non-resistance, against the insane and illogical attacks of those, in other respects, sound, consistent, and excellent men, Henry Ward Beecher and Theodore Parker. Your words were timely and refreshing to every one whose mental and moral vision has been opened to see the divinity and beauty of those precepts of the Man of Nazareth, uttered in unostentatious and simple phrase – ‘Do good to them that hate you’ – ‘Resist not evil’ – &C To me, this is not only sound morality, but true philosophy. Like begets like. . . . it was no part of my intention to argue this question; you have done it completely. H.C. Wright and Adin Ballou have done it over and over again. Humanity in general owes much to them and to you for your joint and several labors in this sacred cause. I am greatly indebted to this distinguished triumvirate of peace; for the last fifteen years, there has scarcely been a day but I have thought more or less of each of you.” ~ letter from E. W. Twing to William Lloyd Garrison.

April 21– Monday– Rock Island, Illinois– The first railroad bridge across the Mississippi River opens between here and Davenport, Iowa.

April 25– Friday– Boston, Massachusetts– “Mr. Conway, pastor of the Unitarian Church in Washington, D.C., in a sermon lately preached there, said, ‘I have been ashamed to hear in Boston, the descendants of the Puritans apologizing for slavery. I am a Southern man, and they think Southerners like that. Southern politicians are willing to make use of such, while they laugh in their sleeves; but the noble men and women of the South grieve to see men falling thus meanly. I fear act contradiction from any one there when I say, they all respect a man from the North who will not bend from his principles; and not one of them thinks a doughface more to be valued than a cat’s-paw.’ We should think that Northerners who have apologized for slavery, and got down on their knees to do its bidding, would feel on reading this, that they have dirtied themselves all over for nothing.” ~ The Liberator.

April 25– Friday– New York City– The New York Times reports that President Pierce and Senator Stephen A Douglas of Illinois are supporting Senator Robert M Hunter of Virginia, age 47, in opposition to James Buchanan of Pennsylvania, as the Democratic nominee for president.

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Senator Robert Hunter

 

April 26– Saturday– Melbourne, Australia– Birth of Joseph George Ward, who will become the 17th Prime Minister of New Zealand, serving from 1906 to 1912. [Dies July 8, 1930.]

April 29– Tuesday– New York City– “The official announcement that the treaty of peace [the Treaty of Paris, signed March 31st, ending the Crimean War] has at last been executed, will be received with almost universal satisfaction, although with little emotion, and no surprise. From the time when the propositions for peace were first suggested, up to yesterday afternoon, when the formal treaty was signed, scarcely any one, who gravely reflected on the matter, entertained much doubt as to what the issue would be. The public are not at present in possession of the particular terms upon which the treaty is based, but we believe that, as far as Great Britain is concerned, they will be strictly in accordance with what is fair and honorable. Although the mere announcement of the conclusion of Peace may be said to have excited comparatively little sensation, the circumstances attending it are already beginning to be felt. Lord Palmerston [British Prime Minister] assures us in his ministerial capacity, and with a full knowledge of what the terms of peace really are, that his ‘conviction is that the treaty which has just been concluded will be deemed satisfactory by this country and by Europe; that by the stipulations of the Treaty the integrity and independence of the Turkish Empire’ – that is to say, the sole object of the war– will be secured, as far as human arrangements can effect that purpose; that the Treaty is honorable to all Powers who are contracting parties to it, and that he (Lord Palmerston) trusts that while, on the one hand, it has put an end to a war which every friend of humanity must naturally have wished to see concluded, it will, on the other, lay the foundation of a lasting and enduring peace. Accompanying this assurance of the Premier, we may recognize the first fruits of peace in the general news of the day. The Bank of France has already reduced the rate of discount from £6 to £5 per cent., and the Bank of England is reported to be about to make a similar reduction. The accounts from the trading and manufacturing districts are also satisfactory.” ~ Frank Leslies Weekly

Upheavals & Transformations ~ January 1896

The year opens with much activity which foreshadows many events of the next twenty years– tension in South Africa which will erupt in the Boer War, an independence movement in Cuba which will involve Spain in a war with the United States, struggles for Irish independence which will lead to the bitter Easter Uprising of 1916, the German Emperor wanting a large navy and a prominent role for Germany on the international stage, agitation by women for the right to vote, refugees fleeing violence in the Ottoman Empire, the rise of the political star of Teddy Roosevelt, agitation by workers, a certain increased interest in socialism, tension between Britain and the United States, and racial tensions in the United States.

January 2– Thursday– Doornkop, Transvaal, South Africa– The raiders led by Dr Leander Starr Jameson are stopped and captured after a day-long battle. They will be sent to England to stand trial.

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Leander Starr Jameson

 

January 3– Friday– Berlin, Germany– In an attempt to embarrass the British, Emperor Wilhelm II sends a telegram to President Paul Kruger congratulating him for stopping the Jameson Raid

January 4– Saturday– Washington, D.C.– Utah officially becomes the 45th state in the union. To insure admission Mormon leaders agreed to ban polygamy. Women gain the right to vote under the new state’s constitution.

January 6– Monday– Cape Town, Cape Colony, South Africa– Cecil Rhodes resigns as Prime Minister of Cape Colony, a government committee having found him guilty of having engineered the Jameson raid.

January 11– Saturday– Washington, D.C.– An editorial in today’s Washington Post calls for official American recognition of the Cuban revolutionaries.

January 12– Sunday– near New Orleans, Louisiana– A black man and his white wife are lynched because of their inter-racial marriage.

January 13– Monday– Vernon, New York– Jane Elizabeth Hitchcock Jones, abolitionist, woman’s rights advocate and lecturer, dies two months before her 83rd birthday.

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Mathew Brady

 

January 15– Wednesday– New York City– Mathew Brady, famous Civil War photographer, dies penniless at age 73 from residual problems from by being struck by a streetcar in Washington, D.C. several months prior.

January 18– Saturday– New Haven Connecticut– Clubs of Irish immigrants and Irish nationalists are said to be planning to activate a submarine-type ram for use against British warships.

January 18– Saturday– Washington, D.C.– Frances Clara Cleveland, the First Lady, age 31, hosts an afternoon tea for a large number of women, both from Washington society and wives and daughters from the diplomatic corps.

January 18– Saturday– St Louis, Missouri– An announcement confirms that the city will host the National Populist Convention on July 22nd.

January 18– Saturday–Berlin, Germany– Emperor Wilhelm gives a speech at a dinner in the palace in which he describes the “wonderful” development of the Empire and declares that Germany must be well armed on the sea as well as on land in order to assert her duties and rights and therefore must increase the size and armament of the fleet.

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Clara Barton c.1900

 

January 19– Sunday– Washington, D.C.– Despite the Turkish government’s position that the Red Cross will not be permitted to work in the Ottoman Empire, Clara Barton, age 74, and her staff busily prepare to do so. She announces that on Tuesday she will go to New York City to take ship for the area in order to aid the Armenians.

January 20– Monday– Chicago, Illinois– Frances E Willard, age 56, and the other officers of the W.C.T.U. send a petition to Congress, asking Congress to take action to provide relief to the Armenians “who have been driven to the last extremity by the fatal fanaticism of the Sultan and his soldiers.” Willard has served as president of the W.C.T.U. since 1879. [Worn out by years of travel, public speaking and intense work for temperance and the rights of women, Willard dies February 17, 1898.]

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Frances Willard

 

January 20– Monday– London, England– Regarding the Venezuela boundary dispute, English newspapers warn that the people of Great Britain will not endure the United States’ invocation of the Monroe Doctrine and that the U S Congress and the Administration are pandering to Irish voters and intend make Latin America increasingly dependent upon the United States.

January 21– Tuesday– Albany, New York– The 30th annual meeting of the State Workingmen’s Association calls for enforcement of the 8 hour workday law.

January 21– Tuesday– Isle of Wright, Great Britain– Queen Victoria reviews the new “flying squadron” of the Royal Navy. Rumors abound that these warships will be sent to American waters.

January 21– Tuesday– Rome, Italy– L’Osservatore Romano, the official Vatican newspaper, denies that the pope made an offer to President Cleveland to mediate the dispute between the United States and Great Britain.

January 22– Wednesday– Hartford, Connecticut– Theodore Roosevelt, age 37, Police Commissioner of New York City, delivers a speech describing recent reforms as “the result of the application of common sense, morality, and courage to the problems presented.”

January 22– New York City– Clara Barton and some of her staff set sail on the steamer New York, headed for Southampton, England, and from there on to Constantinople, Turkey.

January 23– Thursday– New York City– An editorial in the New York Times supports Police Commissioner Theodore Roosevelt in his reform efforts for “manly and honest enforcement of the law” and declares that those in Roosevelt’s own [Republican] party who are attacking him ought to be subject to “exposure and rebuke” for their support of “lawlessness and corruption.”

January 24– Friday– Washington, D. C.– The Senate passes a resolution from the Committee on Foreign Relations calling on all the powers which are party to the Berlin Treaty of 1878 to take measures against Turkey to stop “the slaughter now going on” of Armenians.

January 24– Friday– Washington, D. C.– At the annual meeting of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, Susan B Anthony, weeks away from her 76th birthday, declares, “We have a sort of fellow-feeling with the Cubans. We women know what it is to be deprived of self-government, and know what it is to be taxed when we don’t have a hand in the assessments.”

January 25– Saturday– New York City– The tailors represented by the Brotherhood of Tailors win a seven weeks strike, helped by the threat of the United Garment Workers to call a general strike of 30,000 clothing workers to support the tailors.

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Daniel De Leon, circa 1904

 

January 26– Sunday– Boston, Massachusetts– “Watch the process of ‘moral development’ in this country– the classic ground in many ways to study history in, for the reason that the whole development of mankind can be seen here, portrayed in a few years, so to speak. You know how, to-day, the Northern people put on airs of morality on the score of having ‘abolished chattel slavery,’ the ‘traffic in human flesh,’ ‘gone down South and fought, and bled, to free the Negro,’ etc., etc. Yet we know that just as soon as manufacturing was introduced in the North, the North found that it was too expensive to own the Negro and take care of him; that it was much cheaper not to own the worker; and consequently that they ‘religiously,’ ‘humanly’ and ‘morally’ sold their slaves to the South, while they transformed the white people of the North, who had no means of production in their own hands, into wage slaves, and mercilessly ground them down. In the North, chattel slavery disappeared just as soon as the development of machinery rendered the institution unprofitable. . . . Socialism knows that revolutionary upheavals and transformations proceed from the rock-bed of material needs. With a full appreciation of and veneration for moral impulses that are balanced with scientific knowledge, it eschews, looks with just suspicion upon and gives a wide berth to balloon morality, or be it those malarial fevers that reformers love to dignify with the name of ‘moral feelings.’” ~ Daniel De Leon in a speech delivered at Well’s Memorial Hall. [De Leon, age 43, an immigrant who arrived in 1874, is a lawyer, educator and socialist activist.]

January 27– Monday– Washington, D. C– The newest associate justice on the Supreme Court, Rufus Peckam, age 57, a Democrat from New York just appointed by President Cleveland in December, issues his first opinion. The case involves federal acquisition of land to become part of the Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, battlefield park. [Peckam will serve on the court until his death on October 24, 1909, writing 303 opinions, including the infamous anti-labor decision in Lochner v New York.]

January 27– Monday– Washington, D. C– The German Embassy hosts 700 people from the diplomatic corps at a reception and dinner in honor of Kaiser Wilhelm’s 37th birthday.

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Wilhelm II

 

January 28– Tuesday–Washington, D.C.– The Navy approves court-martial sentences imposed upon four white sailors for hazing several black seamen. The white men face four months confinement and dismissal from the service.

January 29– Wednesday– Elkhorn, West Virginia– Better than 600 African Americans from the area gather to protest the lynching of a black man two days ago. Fearful of the large number of black people, town leaders deputize and arm a substantial number of extra police officers “to be in readiness should trouble break out.”

January 30– Thursday– Boston, Massachusetts– The Boston Christian Endeavor Union, an inter-dominational youth group, reports that yesterday three different hotels in the city refused a room to Bishop Benjamin W Arnett, age 58, an educator and a leader of African Methodist Episcopal Church. The Revere House finally admitted him as a guest but required him to take his meals in his room.

January 30– Thursday– Washington, D.C.– Senator William A Peffer, Populist from Kansas, age 64 and himself a veteran of the Union Army, introduces a bill to provide pension benefits to any soldier or sailor who deserted the Confederate forces and afterwards enlisted in the U S Army or Navy.

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Frances Folsom Cleveland, the First Lady

 

January 30– Thursday– Washington, D.C.– President and Mrs Cleveland host an elegant dinner at the White House for the justices of the Supreme Court and their wives.

Friendly & Intimate Relations ~ January 1892

President Harrison asserts his intention to “cultivate friendly and intimate relations” with other countries despite the tensions with Chile which resolve at the end of the month. He wants to send grain to starving people in Russia and appoints a black man as American minister to Liberia. Evidence of labor tensions and the on-going problem of racism manifest themselves. Both will escalate during the coming year.

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Ellis Island Main Building

 

January 1–Friday– New York City–The facility at Ellis Island goes into operation as the location to receive and process immigrants coming into the port of New York.

January 1– Friday– Chicago, Illinois– Roswell B. Mason, Mayor of Chicago from 1869 to 1871 and who called in federal troops after the Great Chicago Fire, angering some citizens, dies at age 86.

January 1– Friday– Capiz, the Philippines– Birth of Manuel Roxas y Acuna, who will serve as first President of the Philippines after independence from 1946 to his death on April 15, 1948.

January 4–Monday– Santiago, Chile–The government advises the United States that the attack on American sailors from the U S S Baltimore in Valparaiso last year [October 16, 1891] was the action of local drunkards, not an orchestrated attack against American honor.

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USS Baltimore

 

 

January 5– Tuesday– Washington, D.C.– “The famine prevailing in some of the Provinces of Russia is so severe and widespread as to have attracted the sympathetic interest of a large number of our liberal and favored people. In some of the great grain-producing States of the West movements have already been organized to collect flour and meal for the relief of these perishing Russian families, and the response has been such as to justify the belief that a ship’s cargo can very soon be delivered at the seaboard through the generous cooperation of the transportation lines. It is most appropriate that a people whose storehouses have been so lavishly filled with all the fruits of the earth by the gracious favor of God should manifest their gratitude by large gifts to His suffering children in other lands. The Secretary of the Navy has no steam vessel at his disposal that could be used for the transportation of these supplies, and I therefore recommend that he be authorized to charter a suitable vessel to receive them if a sufficient amount should be offered, and to send them under the charge of a naval officer to such Russian port as may be most convenient for ready distribution to those most in need.” ~ Message to Congress from President Benjamin Harrison.

January 7– Thursday– Krebs, Oklahoma– A mine explosion due to unsafe working conditions kills approximately 100 workers and injures about another 150. Black people trying to help rescue white survivors are driven away by armed white men.

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monument to the Krebs miners

 

January 7– Thursday– Cairo, Egypt– Tewfik Pasha, Khedive of Egypt since 1879, dies at 39 years of age.

January 9– Saturday– Neveda, Missouri– Birth of Eva Kelly Bowring, politician, who will become the first woman to represent Nebraska in the U S. Senate. [Dies January 8, 1985.]

January 10– Sunday– Indianapolis, Indiana–Streetcar employees strike.

January10– Sunday– Coldwater, Mississippi– Birth of Dumas Malone, historian who will author a six volume biography of Thomas Jefferson and will serve as the first editor-in-chief of the Dictionary of American Biography. [Dies December 27, 1986.]

January 11–Monday– Washington, D.C.–President Harrison appoints William D McCoy, an African American, 38 years old, an educator from Indiana, as United States minister to Liberia. [McCoy will present his credentials to the Liberian government in the capital of Monrovia on March 28, 1892 and will die there of fever on May 16, 1893.]

January 14– Thursday– Norfolk, England– Prince Albert Victor, age 28, grandson of Queen Victoria and son of Albert Edward, the Prince of Wales, dies of influenza. [His father will become King Edward VII when Victoria dies in 1901. Victor’s fiancee, Princess Mary of Teck, will marry Victor’s younger brother George who will become King George V upon the death of his father in 1910.]

January 14– Thursday– Lippstadt, Germany– Birth of Martin Niemoller, Protestant clergyman who will initially support Adolph Hitler but change his view and be imprisoned from 1937 to 1945. He will serve as president of the World Council of Churches from 1961 to 1968. [Dies March 6,1984.]

January 15– Friday– Greeley County, Nebraska– Birth of Jane Margueretta Hoey, social worker who will become the first director of the Bureau of Public Assistance in the Social Security Administration from 1936 to 1953. [Dies October 6, 1968.]

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Jane Hoey

 

January 19– Tuesday– Borgades, Iceland– Birth of Olafur Thors, political leader who will serve as prime minister several times between 1942 and 1963. [Dies December 31, 1964.]

January 20–Wednesday– Santiago, Chile–The government demands the recall of the American minister.

January 21–Thursday– Washington, D.C.–The United States demands the payment of an indemnity from Chile for last October’s incident.

January 22– Friday– Brooklyn, New York– Adele Parmentier Bayer, who has become known as “the Guardian Angel of the sailors” for her forty years of welfare work with merchant seamen and sailors in the U S Navy, dies at 77 years of age.

January 22– Friday– Washington, D.C.– Joseph P Bradley, U.S. Supreme Court Justice appointed by President Grant in 1870, dies at age 78. He served on the commission which resolved the disputed election of 1876.

January 24– Sunday– Mengo, Uganda– With the help of fire from British soldiers using a Maxim gun, Protestant believers repel an attack by a large number of Catholic believers.

January 25– Monday– Washington, D.C.– “The request for the recall of Mr. Egan upon the ground that he was not persona grata was unaccompanied by any suggestion that could properly be used in support of it, and I infer that the request is based upon official acts of Mr. Egan which have received the approval of this Government. But however that may be, I could not consent to consider such a question until it had first been settled whether our correspondence with Chile could be conducted upon a basis of mutual respect. In submitting these papers to Congress for that grave and patriotic consideration which the questions involved demand I desire to say that I am of the opinion that the demands made of Chile by this Government should be adhered to and enforced. If the dignity as well as the prestige and influence of the United States are not to be wholly sacrificed, we must protect those who in foreign ports display the flag or wear the colors of this Government against insult, brutality, and death inflicted in resentment of the acts of their Government and not for any fault of their own. It has been my desire in every way to cultivate friendly and intimate relations with all the Governments of this hemisphere. We do not covet their territory. We desire their peace and prosperity. We look for no advantage in our relations with them except the increased exchanges of commerce upon a basis of mutual benefit. We regret every civil contest that disturbs their peace and paralyzes their development, and are always ready to give our good offices for the restoration of peace. It must, however, be understood that this Government, while exercising the utmost forbearance toward weaker powers, will extend its strong and adequate protection to its citizens, to its officers, and to its humblest sailor when made the victims of wantonness and cruelty in resentment not of their personal misconduct, but of the official acts of their Government.” ~ Message to Congress from President Benjamin Harrison regarding the situation with Chile.

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January 25– Monday– Santiago, Chile– The government of Chile offers $75,000 indemnity to the families of U S sailors killed and injured and withdraws the request for the recall of the American minister. [This dollar amount would equal approximately $2.01 million in today’s dollars using the Consumer Price Index.]

January 26– Tuesday– Worcester, Massachusetts– Birth of Zara Cully, African American actress. [She will begin her career in 1919 and continue performing until her death on February 28, 1978.]

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Zara Cully

 

January 28– Thursday– Washington, D.C.– “I transmit herewith additional correspondence between this Government and the Government of Chile . . . . The response . . . to our note of the 21st withdraws, with acceptable expressions of regret, the offensive note of . . . the 11th ultimo, and also the request for the recall of Mr. Egan [American minister to Chile]. The treatment of the incident of the assault upon the sailors of the Baltimore is so conciliatory and friendly that I am of the opinion that there is a good prospect that the differences growing out of that serious affair can now be adjusted upon terms satisfactory to this Government by the usual methods and without special powers from Congress. This turn in the affair is very gratifying to me, as I am sure it will be to the Congress and to our people. The general support of the efforts of the Executive to enforce the just rights of the nation in this matter has given an instructive and useful illustration of the unity and patriotism of our people.” ~ Message to Congress from President Benjamin Harrison reporting on additional correspondence between the United States and Chile.

January 28– Thursday– Washington, D.C.–The United States accepts Chile’s offer of $75,000 made on January 25th.

January 30– Saturday– Bucharest, Romania – Birth of Grigore Gafencu, Romanian lawyer, journalist and politician who will serve as Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1939 to 1940. [Dies January 30, 1957.]

January 31– Sunday– Menton, France– Charles Spurgeon, popular English preacher, evangelist and author dies at age 57.