Marc shares some of the events that happened on this day in history, including the arrest of labor agitator Mother Jones for leading a protest of conditions in West Virginia mines at the age of 83, the death of singer Whitney Houston, and the release of Nelson Mandela from prison after 27 years of incarceration.
Islamic Revolution’s Victory Day (Iran) – 1979 – The Iranian Revolution establishes an Islamic theocracy under the leadership of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.
On this day in history:
1715: The Tuscarora (Coree) Indians led by Tom Blount, sign a peace treaty with the English settlers in North Carolina. This ends much of the fighting in the area. Some sources say it is signed at a fort called Nooherooka by the Indians.
1861: In Arizona, Lieutenant George Bascom has discovered the bodies of the six hostages that had been held by Cochise. The bodies are buried. Today, three of Cochise’s relatives that Bascom held hostage, and 3Coyotero Apache prisoners are hung over the graves of the white hostages.
1903 – Five hundred Japanese and 200 Mexican laborers unite to fight the labor contractor responsible for hiring at the American Beet Sugar Co. in Oxnard, Calif. They ultimately win higher wages and the right to shop at stores not owned by the company
1913 – Mary Harris “Mother” Jones is arrested while leading a protest of conditions in West Virginia mines. She was 83 years old at the time
1919 – The Seattle General Strike ends after six days. Some 65,000 workers struck for higher pay after two years of World War I wage controls
1948 – “White Shirt Day” at UAW-represented GM plants. Union members are encouraged to wear white shirts, marking the anniversary of the 1937 sit-down strike that gave the union bargaining rights at the automaker. The mission: send a message that “blue collar” workers deserve the same respect as their management counterparts. One of the day’s traditional rules: Don’t get your shirt any dirtier than the boss gets his. The 44-day strike was won in 1937 but the tradition didn’t begin until 1948, at the suggestion of Local 598 member Bert Christenson
1961 – Dr. Robert Clifton Weaver was sworn in as Administrator of the Housing and Home Finance Agency on this date in 1961. To date, no other Black held a higher ranking federal position.
1968 – Some 1,300 sanitation workers begin what is to become a 64-day strike in Memphis, ultimately winning union recognition and wage increases. The April 4 assassination in Memphis of Martin Luther King Jr., who had been taking an active role in mass meetings and street actions, brought pressure on the city to settle the strike
1977 – Clifford Alexander, Jr. became the first Black Secretary of the Army
1978: The “longest walk” takes place to protest Indian treatment.
1989 – Barbara C. Harris was ordained the first woman Bishop in the Episcopal Church
1990 – Nelson Mandela is released from Victor Verster prison, near Cape Town, after 27 years incarceration.
1990 – Mike Tyson was knocked out by James “Buster” Douglas on this date in 1990 in the 10th round of a Tokyo, Japan, match. This was one of the greatest upsets in boxing’s history.
2011 – Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker announces he will call out the National Guard, if necessary, to deal with any “unrest” among state employees in the wake of his decision to unilaterally end nearly all collective bargaining rights for the workers
Born on this day in history:
1847 – Thomas Alva Edison – He invented the light bulb, the phonograph, and the motion picture camera, and became a legend for contributions to telecommunications and industry. With 1,093 U.S. patents in his name, he is considered the fourth most prolific inventor in history.
1909 – Max Baer – Heavyweight boxer who fought with many known great boxers.
1914 – Josh White – Also known as Pinewood Tom and Tippy Barton; he was the first black singer-guitarist to have featured roles in Hollywood and Broadway.
1917 – Sidney Sheldon – American television writer who created such popular TV series as I Dream of Jeannie, The Patty Duke Show, and Hart to Hart. Also a bestselling novelist, he published Rage of Angels, Master of the Game, and The Other Side of Midnight during the 1970s and ’80s.
1935, Born on this day, Gene Vincent, (born Eugene Craddock), US rock ‘n’ roll singer with His Blue Caps who had a 1956 US No.7 & UK No.16 single with ‘Be Bop A Lula’. Vincent died on October 12th 1971.
1939, Born on this day, Gerry Goffin, American songwriter of over 20 US hits with Carol King, including The Shirelles ‘Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow’, The Drifters ‘Up On The Roof’, The Chiffons, ‘One Fine Day’, Herman’s Hermits, ‘I’m Into Something Good’.
1940, Born on this day, Bobby ‘Boris’ Pickett, who had the 1962 US No.1 & 1973 UK No.3 single ‘The Monster Mash’. The song was a spoof on the dance crazes popular at the time, including the Twist and the Mashed Potato. Pickett died of leukaemia at the age of 69 on April 25th 2007.
1946, Born on this day, Ray Lake, singer with The Real Thing, who had the 1976 UK No.1 single ‘You To Me Are Everything’.
1953, Born on this day, Alan Rubin, The Blues Brothers, who had the 1990 UK No.12 single ‘Everybody Needs Somebody To Love’.
1964 – Sarah Palin – Former Governor of Alaska, reality star, and Republican candidate for the U.S. Vice Presidency in 2008.
On this day in history, we lost:
2009, Ronettes singer Estelle Bennett died at her home in Englewood, N.J. She was 67. The 60’s girl group best known for their work with producer Phil Spector had the 1963 hit ‘Be My Baby’ which epitomized the famed “wall of sound” technique.
2012, Whitney Houston was found dead in suite 434 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, submerged in the bathtub.
Sources: The People History; Wikipedia List of Historical Anniversaries; This Day in Women’s History; This Day in African History;History.com; History Orb; Yenoba; Selected Black Facts; Phil Konstantin’s North American Indian History; and This Day in Music