Monday, November 11, 2013

Today -100: November 11, 1913: Not guilty

Mendel Beilis is acquitted of killing that kid in Kiev. The jury deliberated just two hours. Anti-Semites are trying to gin up mobs for a nice celebratory pogrom by claiming the Jews bought the verdict.

Beilis will decide that the better part of valor is getting the fuck out of Russia before some crazy anti-Semite kills him. By the end of the year he’ll be in Palestine. He will later make his way to New York, where he will publish a book called... wait for it... The Story of My Sufferings, in 1926. I saw a signed copy for sale at for $550. Who collects that sort of thing?

Congress and Pres. Wilson are fighting over how many regional banks the Federal Reserve will have. It makes me sleepy just to type that sentence. Let us never speak of this again.

William Sulzer demands his salary as governor for October, saying he was illegally impeached and is in fact still governor.

Headline of the Day -100: “Wilson Plans to Starve Out Huerta; He Sounds Powers To Stop All Loans.”

The New Jersey Supreme Court overturns the convictions of Big Bill Haywood and two other IWW leaders for actions during the Paterson silk strike. “The court held that the mere fact that a person walking along a public street in a peaceable manner was followed by a crowd was not sufficient to justify his conviction of being a disorderly person.”

John Richard Archer is elected mayor by the borough council of Battersea (London), who thinks he’s the first black mayor in the UK (actually the first one seems to have been one Allan Glaisyer Minns, mayor of a small Norfolk town in 1904-6).

An Italian anarchist is arrested in Switzerland for supposedly masterminding a plot to assassinate the emperors of both Germany and Austria.

The news reaches the residents of Zabern, Alsace that last month Lt. Gunther Freiherr von Forstner encouraged his soldiers to shoot any Alsatian who bothered them. Zabernians besiege the Officers’ Club, but are fought off by soldiers with fixed bayonets.

Anthony Comstock threatens the employees of Alva Belmont’s women’s suffrage hq in New York with arrest for selling Christabel Pankhurst’s book about venereal disease, Plain Fact About a Great Evil. He told Belmont he wouldn’t arrest her because of her social position, but would go after the working-class women who sold it. He also told her that he has always been governed by the influence of his mother, who died when he was 5. He has, of course, not read the book he wants to ban.

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