Helloooooo History People!
Once again we find ourselves in a world where history is happening, and I invite you to become (a part of the narrative, the story they will write someday) about some of the events that occurred in the past and even now in the present.
This week includes some extremely significant events in our history… Let’s take a look!
1855: Bleeding Kansas Development of Separate Governments
President Franklin Pierce signed the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854, the flame that started the massive blaze that was Bleeding Kansas. The act itself permitted the people to decide on the state’s status as a “free” or “slave” state. This decision incited a massive influx of violent individuals from Missouri and surrounding states to infiltrate the election and cause the results to report an overwhelmingly pro-slavery majority. On this day in particular, a few months after the pro-slavery leaders were elected to govern the territory, a group of abolitionists led by John Brown and others formed the Kansas Free State forces to oppose the leadership that greatly differed from that which was wanted by the northern half of the state. For years this kind of violence ensued between individuals on both sides of the issue of slavery, leading into the American Civil War.
1901: The First Person Barrel Rides Down Niagara Falls
She was not the first person to make her way down the falls and live to tell the tale, but she was the first person to do so in a barrel. Annie Edson Taylor was the first person to barrel ride down Niagara Falls, hoping, if she survived, that she would earn national fame and be able to make some fast cash. The entire experience lasted about twenty minutes, and that was pretty much the same lifespan of her fame, as well. Annie Edson Taylor was a 63-year old teacher from Michigan. Wouldn’t it have been incredible to see her in class the Monday after this happened?
1774: Colonists Send a Petition to England Addressing Grievances
Following the occurrence of the Boston Tea Party, Great Britain set a series of laws by which the colonists were expected to abide known as the Coercive Acts, or in the eyes of the colonists, the Intolerable Acts, including the closure of Boston’s Ports and expected quartering of British soldiers, even in private residences. Even at this point in history, the colonists were still wanting to remain loyal to their motherland, Great Britain, and in order to pursue this desire while assertively addressing their discrepancies with the newly enforced series of laws, Congress wrote a petition to the king describing their situation. The king did not respond to this request, and the colonist decided to take action by writing yet another letter to the king explaining their reasoning and justification for taking up arms against the country with whom they had previously felt such a strong alliance and identification.
2001: The Patriot Act
Following the horrific terror attacks on 9/11, U.S. President George W. Bush proposed the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing the Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (PATRIOT) Act which granted the government and law enforcement officers the right to obtain information that may pertain to the existence of terroristic threats against the United States with the intent to use that information in a way that actively prevents the occurrence of any future terrorist attacks. This piece of legislature is extremely controversial; there exists the argument that the Patriot Act oversteps the boundary between security and individual privacy by granting these agencies access to too much information about the average citizen. However, the fine line between privacy and security is one that will always be smudged in one way or another sacrificing particular aspects of each side.
TODAY IN HISTORY:
1904: The First Subway in New York City Opens
Although it wasn’t the first instance of underground travel in the world (London – 1863), or even in the United States (Boston – 1897), New York City’s installation of the subway was one of the most intricate and practical means of transportation at the time. The length of the first system was approximately 9.1 miles long and extended from City Hall, to Grand Central Station, to Broadway, all the way to Harlem. There were over 100,000 people that decided to take the subway on its opening day. Now, millions of New Yorkers travel by subway to get to and from home, work, school, etc., and it has become a necessary transportation service in a city that has grown to be among the largest in the world.
Quote of the Day:
“If you can’t make it good, at least make it look good. “
-Bill Gates, Founder of Microsoft (Birthday: Oct. 28, 1955)