Battle of Brewery Gulch, 1919

It was high summer in Bisbee, and tensions were high. Two years before, posses of policemen and citizens had rounded up hundreds of copper miners and driven them out of town – to New Mexico, in fact – and the federal government was investigating. The year was 1919 and it was early July. The Independence …

“Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing” a.k.a. “The Black National Anthem”

“Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing” is a deeply religious song originally written to commemorate Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. The writer was the principal of a school who was asked to speak at the birthday memorial event. His brother composed the music. A choir of 500 children first sang the song in 1900 at their school. The …

Church Arsons and the Prevention Act – 1996

Approximately five years ago, Mt. Zion church in Greeleyville, South Carolina burned down. Though it is believed to have been a lightning strike that burned the church, it was not the first experience church members had with rebuilding after a fire. Back in 1995-1996, during a rash of church arsons, the church building had been …

East St. Louis Massacre -1917

Prior to World War 1, workers had unionized. During the war, workers were scarce, so companies, like those in East St. Louis, recruited rural blacks to come and work in the factories and join a thriving and growing black community. Once soldiers returned to their jobs after the war, there was some resentment between white …

Introduction: Why history?

I am sure most are familiar with the saying, “Those who do not learn from history are bound to repeat it,” or, “History repeats itself” or some such comment. More recently, I have heard several people comment that you must face history and acknowledge it before you can learn from it. Considering these comments, I …

The First EMTs

Today when we call 9-1-1 for a medical emergency, a vehicle equipped with life-saving equipment is dispatched to your location, staffed by medically trained staff to treat you while you travel. But it was not always that way. As recently as the 1960s, if you called for emergency transport, you might travel in a paddy …

Juneteenth: Celebrating History

On June 19, 1939, a 12-year-old girl experienced the loss of the home her family moved into four days earlier. A mob of 500 people who didn’t want her kind there destroyed the home, and it was burnt to the ground. Fourteen law enforcement vehicles were at the scene that evening but they did nothing …