What caused the Salem witch trials of 1692? -- The main factors that started and fueled the trials were politics, religion, family feuds, economics, and the imaginations and fears of the people.
A holy war raged for years -- Joseph Smith and his religious faithful had sought to establish their Zion in one community after another. Not even the wilderness would have them. At the end, there was no battleground but there were prisoners. In the late afternoon on June 27, 1844, a mob crept across an Illinois pasture and surrounded the jail at Carthage. A small pack of the attackers stormed up the stairs and swiftly fired shots into the 2nd-floor cell that housed the Mormon prophet, Joseph Smith, his brother Hyrum, and his friends John Taylor and Willard Richards.
In 1908, Police Commissioner Theodore Bingham, published an article in The North American Review contending half the city's criminals were Jews. The face of Italian immigrants, wrote Charles Bancroft, a doctor who worked on Ellis Island, displayed "a lack of intelligence." A powerful clique of eugenicists began to argue that the new immigrants from Eastern and Southern Europe were genetically prone to crime, disease and depravity and should be kept out.
Holocaust -- Churches throughout Europe were mostly silent while Jews were persecuted, deported and murdered by the Nazis. It is time for Switzerland, Sweden, Portugal and Spain to acknowledge that there were no truly neutral countries on the European continent during World War II. It is now time for those nations to acknowledge that they were part of the Nazis' New Order and that they bear some responsibility for the tragic history. Anti-Defamation League
Slaves and the Courts 1740-1860 -- Contains over a hundred items documenting legal cases "concerning the difficult and troubling experiences of African and African-American slaves in the American colonies and the United States." Materials include accounts from "some of the defendants and plaintiffs themselves as well as those of abolitionists, presidents, politicians, slave owners, fugitive and free territory slaves, lawyers and judges, and justices of the U.S. Supreme Court." Library of Congress
Long before the civil rights marches of the 1960s, another group of Americans fought for their basic rights as US citizens. In 1944, 63 young men stood trial for resisting the draft at the concentration camp at Heart Mountain, Wyoming. Seven leaders were accused of conspiring to encourage them. The dissidents served two years in prison, and for the next 50 were written out of the popular history of Japanese America.
Freedom Never Dies: The Legacy of Harry T. Moore explores this enigmatic leader, a distinguished school teacher whose passionate crusade for equal rights could not be discouraged by either the white power structure or the more cautious factions of his own movement. In 1951 after celebrating Christmas Day, civil rights activist Harry T. Moore and his wife Harriette retired to bed in their white frame house tucked inside a small orange grove in Mims, Florida. Ten minutes later, a bomb shattered their house, their lives and any notions that the south's post-war transition to racial equality would be a smooth one. Harry Moore died on the way to the hospital; his wife died nine days later.
Over 40 years ago, conflict over integration of Little Rock Central High School captured the attention of the world. That crisis stands as the most significant news event in Little Rock's 20th century history.
Feb. 1, 1960, the Greensboro Four felt isolated and alone as they sat at that whites-only lunch counter at the Woolworth Store.
The Birmingham Church Bombing Case -- Sept. 15, 1963: A dynamite bomb explodes outside Sunday services at the Sixteenth Baptist Church, killing 11-year-old Denise McNair, 14-year-olds Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Addie Mae Collins, and injuring 20 others.
Copyright Kari Sable 1994-2006