Sunday, June 17, 2012

Today -100: June 17, 1912: Of meat riots, white planks, socialists, and negro rebellions

Meat riots in Chicago. Which sounds like a funny way of describing the Republican convention, but no, it’s actually rioting over the high price of meat.

Sen. Francis Newlands (D-Nev.) proposes a “white plank” for the Democratic platform: a constitutional amendment to disenfranchise all black people and ban all non-white immigration.

Republican delegates are arriving in Chicago, marching from the railway station to hq behind bands which only seem to know “Hail, Hail, The Gang’s All Here” or “There’ll Be a Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight.”

William Jennings Bryan, covering the convention for many newspapers, notes that “The Taft men, excepting the Southern delegates, are as a rule of the conservative type. They speak more deliberately and show less animation. Many of them are politicians of long experience who have been accustomed to the methods of the inner circle. They speak cautiously, act deliberately, and are more inclined to ‘view with alarm’ than to enthuse. They feel that things have been going along fairly well, and are anxious that such changes as are necessary may be made ‘slowly and only after careful investigation.’ The Roosevelt men, on the contrary, are largely of the aggressive type. They have already decided matters and have no doubts to settle. They are not waiting for investigation and are not weighing reforms in apothecary scales.”

For the first time, the Socialist Party will be on the ballot in every state.

The Canadian Supreme Court rules that Quebec can’t make mixed marriages between Catholics and Protestants illegal if performed by a Protestant (but not a Catholic) priest.

The head of the negro rebellion in Cuba orders all foreigners in areas under his control to leave or be hanged.

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