Thursday, October 20, 2016

Today -100: October 20, 1916: Of banners, Standards, quarantines, and klucks


Members of the National Women’s Party picket a Woodrow Wilson speech in Chicago, but the crowd tears up their banners (“Wilson is against women,” “Wilson prevented the passage of suffrage amendment”, etc).

Inside, Wilson says that the function of women will be “the element of mediation, or comprehending and drawing all the elements together. It is the power of sympathy, as contrasted with the power of contests.”

In another Chicago speech (or possibly the same one? not worth going back to check), he tells immigrants not to be so... foreign. He says the US can help in the settlement of the Great War because Americans come from all stocks and can “interpret the thought of the world [and...] the needs of the future.” I’m not sure if he realizes that he’s assigning the US the same place in the world as he assigned to women in politics.

The Bayonne Standard Oil strike breaks up when American-born workers desert their immigrant (mostly Poles) compatriots.  Standard offered nothing, but will “investigate” any grievances – except those involving pay.

The Harvard football team is quarantined (well, confined to campus) after a half-back comes down with suspected polio.

German Field Marshal Alexander von Kluck retires, at 70, to the doubtless disappointment of British soldiers, who sang songs about him.


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