Saturday, December 14, 2013

Today -100: December 14, 1913: Of sieges, operas, and literacy requirements

In the ongoing rebel siege of Tampico, Mexico, both sides are executing prisoners, as was the custom. First the Federales hanged rebels in view of the rebel lines, then the rebels responded in kind.

Elsewhere, Pancho Villa’s men are reportedly merrily looting Chihuahua and extorting priests, as was the custom. Villa orders all Spaniards out of the city and indeed the country. He’s got a thing about Spaniards. Many are seeking refuge in El Paso. Villa also calls together a meeting of merchants and demands millions of dollars as revolutionary tax.

Headline of the Day -100: “Militants Shout To King at Opera.” After the first act of... wait for it... Verdi’s Joan of Arc, militants in the box opposite the royal box unfurl a banner saying “Women are being tortured in your Majesty’s prisons.”

Congress brings back the bill creating a literacy requirement for immigrants that Taft vetoed. California and Washington state congresscritters try to add bans on Asiatic immigrants, but fail.

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