Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Today -100: April 11, 1917: Save some carnage and death for us, huh, Europeans?

The US plans to slow-walk its entry into the war, not sending any soldiers over until 1 million are trained. In theory they could send the (not very large) existing army over now, but those soldiers are needed to train the incoming soldiers for like a year or so.

The announced plans to conscript unmarried 19-to-25-year-old men has predictably led  to a sharp increase in marriages among 19-to-25-year-old men.

Theodore Roosevelt meets with Woodrow Wilson and asks permission to raise his own division. Wilson stalls him. TR will try to get Congress to over-ride the War Department.

I’m not sure if “drafted” in this story means actual conscription, but the government plans to “draft” Native Americans in Oklahoma for farm labor to free up farmers to be soldiers, and will pull them out of school to do so.

An explosion in the Eddystone Ammunition Corp shell factory in Chester, Pennsylvania kills 130+ workers, the vast majority of them young women. The company says it’s absolutely not their fault that their high-explosive powder went boom, it must be German saboteurs.

The Russian Provisional Government is confiscating all of Tsar Nicholas’s stuff.

Headline of the Day -100: 

The First National Registration Society wants everyone in the US fingerprinted. Which is not ominous at all (although many of the Eddystone factory bodies will never be identified, so they may have a point).

The Society for the Suppression of Vice, the late Anthony Comstock’s outfit, seizes the May issue of Pearson’s and orders the editor and publisher into court because of an article, written by the editor, Frank Harris, “calculated to corrupt the morals of youth.” The article is part of the series “The Night Court Inquisition” investigating abuses in the New York City women’s night court, where people can be imprisoned for prostitution and other vice crimes on the word of a single corrupt cop. It will be announced two days from now that the court will be abolished. Journalism works.

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