HISTORY is proud to announce HISTORYTalks, a new speaker series. Join us and two former U.S. Presidents for our first event, Leadership & Legacy, in New York City on February 29, 2020. Purchase tickets at www.history-talks.com.
#Repost@biography:#OnThisDay in 1968, an iconic moment in sports and activism happened at the Mexico Olympics. U.S. sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos protested racial inequality in the United States and the pre-Olympics violence in Mexico from the medal stand. Each man held their gloved fist aloft in the black power salute as the U.S. anthem played. What many don’t know is that the third man on the medal stand, Australian Peter Norman, was also protesting. On his jacket you can see a pin, it’s an Olympic Project for Human Rights pin. All three men were punished to varying degrees by the Olympics and their respective countries. Smith and Carlos were suspended from the U.S. team by the IOC and eventually expelled from the games. Norman’s career suffered greatly, and he never competed in another Olympics, nor was he welcomed to the 2000 Sydney Olympics even though he still holds the Australian 200M record. When Norman died in 2006, Smith & Carlos served as pallbearers. #ThisDayinHistory#TommieSmith#JohnCarlos#PeterNorman#history#Olympics
On #ThisDayinHistory 170 years ago (1849), Harriet Tubman and her brothers, Ben and Henry, escaped their Maryland plantation. Her brothers, however, changed their minds and went back. With the help of the Underground Railroad, Harriet persevered and traveled 90 miles north to Pennsylvania and freedom. She found work as a housekeeper in Philadelphia, but she wanted freedom for her loved ones and friends, too. She soon returned to the south to lead her niece and her niece’s children to Philadelphia via the Underground Railroad. The 1850 Fugitive Slave Act allowed fugitive and free slaves in the north to be captured and enslaved. This made Harriet’s job as an Underground Railroad conductor much harder and forced her to lead slaves further north to Canada, traveling at night, usually in the spring or fall when the days were shorter. She carried a gun for both her own protection and to “encourage” her charges who might be having second thoughts. She often drugged babies and young children to prevent slave catchers from hearing their cries. It’s widely reported she emancipated 300 slaves; however, those numbers may have been estimated and exaggerated by her biographer Sarah Bradford, since Harriet herself claimed the numbers were much lower. Nevertheless, it’s believed Harriet personally led at least 70 slaves to freedom, including her elderly parents, and instructed dozens of others on how to escape on their own. She claimed, “I never ran my train off the track and I never lost a passenger.” #Har#HarrietTubman#Tubman#USHistory#UndergroundRailroad #Harriet
On #ThisDayinHistory 1963, in the 16th Street Baptist Church, a bomb explodes during Sunday morning services, killing four young girls. The 16th Street Baptist Church served as a meeting place for civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King, Jr., who once called Birmingham a “symbol of hardcore resistance to integration.” Alabama’s governor, George Wallace, made preserving racial segregation one of the central goals of his administration. The church bombing was the third Birmingham had seen in 11 days. Fifteen sticks of dynamite were planted in the church basement. The bomb detonated at 10:19 a.m., killing Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Addie Mae Collins–all 14 years old, and 11-year-old Denise McNair. More than 20 other members of the congregation were injured in the blast. When thousands of angry black protesters assembled at the crime scene, Wallace sent hundreds of police and state troopers to the area to break up the crowd. Two young black men were killed that night, one by police. Public outrage over the bombing grew, drawing international attention to Birmingham. At a funeral for three of the girls King addressed more than 8,000 mourners. Klan member, Robert Chambliss, was charged with murder but in October 1963, he was cleared of the murder. Although a subsequent FBI investigation identified three other men–Bobby Frank Cherry, Herman Cash and Thomas E. Blanton, Jr.–as having helped Chambliss commit the crime, it was later revealed that FBI chairman J. Edgar Hoover blocked their prosecution and shut down the investigation without filing charges in 1968. After Alabama Attorney General Bill Baxley reopened the case, Chambliss was convicted in 1977 and sentenced to life in prison. Efforts to prosecute the other three men continued for decades. Though Cash died in 1994, Cherry and Blanton were arrested and charged with four counts of murder in 2000. Blanton was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. Cherry’s trial was delayed after judges ruled he was mentally incompetent to stand trial. This decision was later reversed. On May 22, 2002, Cherry was convicted and sentenced to life. #Birmingham#CivilRights#1960s#4littlegirls#BirminghamSunday
Today is Friday the 13th. Are you feeling superstitious, or only moderately stitious? (We'll see ourselves out). Friday the 13th has inspired a late 19th-century secret society, an early 20th-century novel, a horror film franchise and not one but two unwieldy terms—paraskavedekatriaphobia and friggatriskaidekaphobia—that describe the fear of this supposedly unlucky day. Just like walking under a ladder, crossing paths with a black cat or breaking a mirror, many people hold fast to the belief that Friday the 13th brings bad luck. Though it’s uncertain exactly when this particular tradition began, negative superstitions have swirled around the number 13 for centuries. While Western cultures have historically associated the number 12 with completeness (12 days of Christmas, 12 months and zodiac signs, 12 labors of Hercules, 12 gods of Olympus and 12 tribes of Israel, just to name a few examples), its successor 13 has a long history as a sign of bad luck. The ancient Code of Hammurabi, for example, reportedly omitted a 13th law from its list of legal rules. Though this was probably a clerical error, superstitious people sometimes point to this as proof of 13’s longstanding negative associations. Why is Friday the 13th Unlucky? According to biblical tradition, 13 guests attended the Last Supper, held on Maundy Thursday, including Jesus and his 12 apostles (one of whom, Judas, betrayed him). The next day, of course, was Good Friday, the day of Jesus’ crucifixion. The seating arrangement at the Last Supper is believed to have given rise to a longstanding Christian superstition that having 13 guests at a table was a bad omen—specifically, that it was courting death. #Fridaythe13th#triskaidekaphobia#superstition#TGIF
On #ThisDayinHistory 1974, Opposition to court-ordered school “busing” turns violent on the opening day of classes in Boston. School buses carrying African American children were pelted with eggs, bricks, and bottles, and police in combat gear fought to control angry white protesters besieging the schools. U.S. District Judge Arthur Garrity ordered the busing of African American students to predominantly white schools and white students to black schools in an effort to integrate Boston’s geographically segregated public schools. In his June 1974 ruling in Morgan v. Hennigan, Garrity stated that Boston’s de facto school segregation discriminated against black children. The beginning of forced busing on September 12 was met with massive protests, particularly in South Boston, the city’s main Irish-Catholic neighborhood. Protests continued unabated for months, and many parents, white and black, kept their children at home. In October, the National Guard was mobilized to enforce the federal desegregation order. #USHistory#Busing#Desegregation#School#History#CivilRights
The image has become iconic and the woman in it, a then 28-year-old Marcy Borders, became known as the 'dust lady' in the days after 9/11. She had been working in the North Tower of the World Trade Center only a month, on the 81st floor which was only 12 stories down from where American Airlines Flight 11 made impact. She made her way down the main stairwell of the tower, along with hundreds of others escaping. In the time it took her to reach the ground floor, the South Tower had just collapsed and an enormous dust cloud, visible from space, was rising. “I took chase from this cloud of dust and smoke that was following me,” Borders said. “Once it caught me it threw me on my hands and knees. Every time I inhaled my mouth filled up with it, I was choking. I was saying to myself out loud, I didn’t want to die, I didn’t want to die.” She was pulled from the dust and into a nearby lobby by a man, and that is where photographer @stanhonda
snapped this haunting photo, seen around the world as a testament to the horrors of 9/11. Marcy Borders passed away from stomach cancer in August 2015, cancer she believes was exacerbated by inhaling dust on that fateful day. The 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund and the World Trade Center Health Program estimate that over 2,000 have died of illnesses related to the attack in the past 18 years. #September11th#DustLady#MarcyBorders#History#NeverForget#PatriotDay#WorldTradeCenter