Sunday, May 08, 2011

Today -100: May 8, 1911: Of the dictates of conscience, lepers, and savage Africans & big ships

Francisco Madero decides not to capture Juarez after all, in an effort to stave off American intervention by keeping the fighting away from the border and stray bullets from crossing it. Forces will be withdrawn from the north and will now focus on capturing Mexico City, which the insurrectos say they will do within a month (it would be easier if they hadn’t blown up all those railroad bridges). Madero is making a huge tactical change and giving up a militarily advantageous position in the north purely to appease the US.

President Díaz announces that he will resign – just as soon as peace is restored. Or as he puts it, “when, according to the dictates of my conscience, I am sure that my resignation will not be followed by anarchy.”

A father in Rhode Island is refusing to give up his 15-year-old son to the authorities. The kid has leprosy, and they want to confine him to either the Massachusetts leper colony on Penikees Island or the Pawtucket Pest House, for the rest of his life. Who wouldn’t want to live in a place called the Pawtucket Pest House?

Headline of the Day -100: “Savage Africans Menace Big Ship.” The British freight steamship Kasenga, now in Brooklyn, had some difficulties in East Africa.

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