Thursday, April 07, 2011

Today -100: April 7, 1911: Of peace talks, women on planes, the 9th Cavalry, and a non-lynching


Peace talks in the Mexican Revolution break off. Pres. Díaz refused to resign.

For the first time ever, an airplane carries not one but two women passengers.

There’s been much confusion about orders for those negro 9th Cavalry troops. For now they’ll be staying in San Antonio, after vigorous protests from various towns they were going to be coming through and forcible representations to Pres. Taft by local congresscritter John Nance Garner (FDR’s vice president). One of the towns objecting to the proposed deployment was Brownsville, where there was a similar incident with black troops in 1906. Just as these 1911 reports of running battles in San Antonio seem to come down one actual incident of a black soldier punching a street car conductor and running off, hugely exaggerated by panicky white folks, in 1906 in Brownsville, hostility between townspeople and black troops culminated in the former claiming the troops had shot up the town and planting spent shells as evidence. When none of the troops ‘fessed up, because they hadn’t done anything, Pres. Roosevelt dishonorably discharging all 167 troops in an impetuous act of collective punishment.

A White Plains, NY policeman saves a black man who slashed a trolley conductor during a fare dispute from being lynched, holding off a mob of 200 with his gun.

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