Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Today -100: November 26, 1914: Of pardons, Bavarians, football, Christmas ships, internment camps, and Indian maids

Outgoing South Carolina Gov. Coleman Blease will pardon or commute the sentences of 75 prisoners for Thanksgiving.  I’m still not sure what’s up with his campaign to use his pardon power to empty the jails.

Fog of War (Rumors, Propaganda and Just Plain Bullshit) of the Day -100: More stories about how disaffected the Bavarian troops supposedly are, fraternizing with French soldiers and not shooting at them but into the air.  I’m not sure whether this propaganda campaign (at least, I’m pretty sure it’s not true) is aimed at reassuring the French or dividing the Germans.

After the weekend, the British newspapers conducted a tut-tut campaign about how many healthy young male spectators there were at football matches and how few of them responded to army recruiters.  So the next step is a campaign to ban football, because of course it is.  A question will be asked in Parliament tomorrow.

One of the ways in which the US is helping out with the war is the “Christmas ship,” a philanthropic scheme to send presents to European children (and sell copies of the newspapers sponsoring the scheme, of course).  It was the least we could do.

The Duchess of Marlborough (née Consuelo Vanderbilt) has zeppelin-proofed her London home, Sunderland House.

Germany orders a census of all the animals in Germany, for rationing purposes.  Also, to save flour, Berlin bakers are banned from baking bread more than twice a day, which they do because everyone prefers fresh bread.  Berliners will eat stale bread and by god they’ll like it, officials declare.

British guards shot several rioting interned Germans at the detention camp on the Isle of Man.  News of this has reached Germany and there are now fears of reprisals against British prisoners.

Zapata’s forces move into  Mexico City as Gen. Blanco’s forces hastily depart, leaving barely any time for mobs to form and start looting. This is why you need to be prepared and draw up a shopping list.  Pancho Villa plans to enter the capital tomorrow.

Headline of the Day -100:  “Croker Is To Wed Indian Maid Today.”  Richard Croker, the former Boss of Tammany Hall, will marry Beulah Edmonson, a Cherokee woman “who last year rode a pony and sang Indian songs in the Hippodrome,” and rode a horse at the head of a suffrage parade in D.C..  The NYT says she’s 50 years younger than him, but it’s really 40, 41 years, tops.

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