Since 1890, workers around the world have taken May 1st off for parading, celebrating, and demonstrating - first in support of the eight hour day, and still in support of fair conditions for working people. May 1st was chosen to commemorate the conviction of eight men accused of throwing a bomb at a May 1886 Chicago rally for the eight hour workday. (A reasonably good history of the affair can be found here.) This May Day if you're here in the San Francisco Bay Area, you're invited to celebrate with your fellow workers (and students) by joining the International Longshore Workers Union who are shutting down 29 West Coast ports in protest of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan or by joining the immigrant rights marches and rallies happening in San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose, and elsewhere. If your boss won't give you the day off, call in sick! And when you get home from all those marches please take a look at the rest of this post:
portrait of May Day's martyrs.
portrait of May Day's martyrs.
I'm please to present this month's History Carnival. A blog carnival is a collection of posts aggregated into one and rotated periodically among various blogs. I'm hosting this month and you can check out the next one at Progressive Historians on June 1st.
I'm opening this carnival with the music history posts I've been feeling: Comb and Razor introduces guitarist and producer Jake Sollo, a major figure in 80s Nigerian pop music, crud crud gives a brief history of bootlegs, and Soul Detective seems to have closed the case of Six James Duncan.
Moving on, here are my overall favorite history posts this month:
Axis of Evel Knievel posts about the Civil War era bread riots, when a crowd of women armed with clubs, rocks and guns took to the streets of the Confederate capital and demanded “bread or blood".
Zenobia: Empress of the East presents an eye opening portrait of the 19th Century lesbian sculptor Harriet Hosmer, complete with a cool photo of Hosmer made miniature in contrast to one of her enormous sculptures.
On Military History and Warfare you can read about the bloody incursion of Mongol armies into Europe during the mid-1200s. The key pull quote here is: After the battle, the Mongols cut off an ear from every fallen Christian warrior to make an accurate body count. Nine bags of ears were eventually sent to Batu as tribute.
Edge of the West revisits a horrific massacre of Apaches in 1871 and explores how even contemporary non-Indian historians fail to acknowledge the bloody history of manifest destiny.
Undercover Black Man posts a series of audio and video clips showing period reaction to the Martin Luther King assassination: Robert Kennedy's speech, Walter Cronkite's report, Jesse Jackson's reaction (when interviewed about the murder in 1976), and James Brown's April 5th, 1968 show which purportedly helped cool the rage in Boston's black communities.
Some of this month's other very readable history posts include:
Yonkerman's amazing Tuberculosis cure wasn't amazing nor was it a cure, but it did come with some aggressive and impressive marketing. Read about it on the Virtual Dime Museum.
Abnormal Diversity has begun translating Hans Asperger's 1944 description of autism and finds some of herself in his descriptions.
In his post, The Goddess of Mount Tai, The China Beat explores a transformation in popular Chinese spiritually 1,000 years ago.
Rustbelt Intellectual theorizes that the mostly unrecognized history of working class feminism might explain why working class white women gravitate towards Hillary Clinton. And while you're on the subject, find an illuminating if depressing breakdown of how Bill Clinton's administration ended the Democratic Party as we knew it at Progressive Historians. And don't miss Part II.
Peripherally connected, Tenured Radical reviews WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution, an exhibit of visual art borne from the women's movement and on exhibit in Long Island City until May 12th.
The execution of Alexander Arbuthnot and Richard Ambrister as ordered by general and future president Andrew Jackson is recounted at executed today. Arbuthnot and Ambrister, a Scotsman and an Englishman, were accused of collaborating with Creek and Seminole fighters and were executed without much of a trial. Sounds familiar.
History is Elementary discovers some history beneath the Augusta National Golf Tournament: and to think this ground has been lying here all these years waiting for someone to come along and lay a golf course upon it.
The Picket Line presents a history of Quaker war tax resistance, excerpting from Isaac Sharpless’s 1898 book A Quaker Experiment in Government. But April 15th is not just for taxes: trivial, yet historical events also transpired on this day as you can see at Our Great Southern Land.
If you thought the Great Exhibition of 1851 (housed in London's incomparable Crystal Palace) was cool, you should check out the competition at the Victorian Peeper. A much more recent bit of the English experience is described at Scandalous Women where you can read about a notorious British sex scandal.
Rwarrr!! Lycanthropy on Providentia.
View a pictoral history of computer data storage from pingdom. (I liked the enormous 10 kb drum memory machine!) And metafilter links to a history of recording technologies.
Also geeky in the best sense, Language Log introduces us to Dr. Syntax and in a totally different vein, Appalachian History has a short and sweet post about Hobo Nickels.
So what? you ask? Easily Distracted suggests some historians' answers.
Thanks for all your submissions folks and also thanks to Sharon Howard for keeping this project together. Submit your history posts for next month's carnival here.