Thursday, July 10, 2014

Today -100: July 10, 1914: Of trusts, Guadalajara, parasitical titled idlers, prison riots, and dwarfs and lamb thyroids

German authorities announce that they received an anonymous warning last April that a Serbian-Slavonic secret committee planned to assassinate Kaiser Wilhelm. Which they ignored. But now they’re been conducting raids on Serbian students in Berlin.

Sir Edward Carson goes to Belfast to inaugurate the self-styled Ulster Provisional Government. They have a Constitution and everything. It begins “Our claim is simply to hold the Province of Ulster in trust for the United Kingdom.” The (Liberal) Daily Chronicle notes that reporters from the Tory papers are wandering the Ulster countryside “on the lookout for a civil war” and being spoon-fed alarmist stories by the Orange organizations. “It may be mentioned as an indication of Lord Northcliffe’s keen business ability that The Daily Mail is running a campaign designed to attract English visitors to North of Ireland Summer resorts and golf courses concurrently with its exploitation of political news from Ulster.”

Carranza is still collecting the views of his generals on whether to parlay with Huerta’s representatives. Villa votes no.

The rebels capture Guadalajara after defeating a larger Federal force. 5,000 soldiers and a lot of artillery are captured with minimal losses on the rebel side.

Rep. Stanley Bowdle (D-Ohio) introduces a bill to impose a 25% tax on the incomes of Americans who marry titled foreigners. His gender-specific concern is for females from rich families who marry “parasitical titled idlers.” For these women, he says, “American ideals, American simplicity, and American patriotism are but mere words.” If he was so concerned with American patriotism, he might have introduced a bill allowing American women who marry foreign men to keep their American citizenship, but no.

The Senate Banking and Currency Committee rejects one of Wilson’s choices for Federal Reserve Board, Thomas Jones, a banker involved with the Zinc Trust and also a director of the Harvester Trust, which was sued/is being sued (?) by the federal government. Another nominee, Paul Warburg, has withdrawn his name in the face of hostility, despite Wilson begging him to reconsider.

A riot breaks out in the penitentiary at Blackwell’s Island (today called Roosevelt Island, under the Queensboro Bridge), and a little fire in its brush factory. “The catcalls and curses could be heard in Manhattan.” Ringleaders (including IWW activist Frank Tannenbaum, who organized a sympathy strike for prisoners who were punished for excessive celebration of the 4th of July) will be put on bread and water – meaning a single slice of bread a day and a similarly limited amount of water. Tomorrow the NYT will blame the unrest on the appointment in January of a woman, Katherine Davis, as Commissioner of the Department of Correction: “surely no decent man can believe that it is right for a woman, however ‘advanced’ in ideas she may be, to be placed in contact with that horrible mob of besotted, degenerate, utterly vicious outcasts.” They could be reacting to her refusal to allow reporters to go to the island and her accusation that newspaper investigations of prisons inflamed the prisoners: “The prisoners got the idea that they were just as good as their keepers”.

Headline of the Day -100: “Dwarf Grows By Science.” They’re using lamb thyroid glands. How they’re using them, it doesn’t say and I don’t really want to know.

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