Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Today -100: August 16, 1911: Of legalized terrorism, lynchings, annexations, and V rays

As expected, Taft vetoes statehood for New Mexico and Arizona due to the provision in AZ’s constitution for the recall of judges, which Taft said would compel judges to make rulings under “legalized terrorism.” The governor of the New Mexico Territory, William Mills, seems to think that the earlier enabling act and a presidential proclamation mean that the veto doesn’t affect NM statehood, and that if Congress disagrees, it will just have to refuse to seat NM’s congresscritters.

One of the Coatesville, Penn. lynching party has been arrested.

Major Henry Rathbone, the man who shared Lincoln’s box at Ford’s Theater and was stabbed by John Wilkes Booth, and who went insane and killed his wife in 1887, dies in the German insane asylum where he’s been incarcerated ever since.

Miguel Gomez, son of the president of Cuba, was arrested for that little murder attempt yesterday. At first he denied that he was Miguel Gomez, then he claimed he had no memory of the shooting, before finally breaking down and confessing.

The Canadian election campaign begins. Conservative opposition leader R. L. Borden is really campaigning against the looming threat of annexation by the United States.

A French scientist claims to have photographed human thoughts. He did it by first staring really hard at an object (a walking stick in one case, and a bottle), and then staring really hard at a photographic plate, on which an image of the object allegedly appeared. This is due to the power of something he calls V rays. The NYT says, perhaps with a degree of sarcasm: “As the Academy of Sciences is the highest official body of savants in France, and all Commander Darget’s experiments were made in the presence of six witnesses, there seems no doubt as to their authenticity.”

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