Posts Tagged ‘Exxon Valdez

24
Mar
09

On This Day, March 24: Abolition

March 24, 1862

Wendall Phillips booed in Cincinnati

Abolitionist orator Wendall Phillips is booed while attempting to give a lecture in Cincinnati, Ohio. The angry crowd was opposed to fighting for the freedom of slaves, as Phillips advocated. He was pelted with rocks and eggs before friends whisked him away while a small riot broke out.

Phillips was perhaps the most outspoken abolitionist of the era. Born in Boston to a wealthy New England family, Phillips was educated at Harvard and practiced law until he became swept up in the anti-slave crusade in the 1830s. The abolitionist movement was a major cause of the rising tension between North and South in the 1830s. Abolitionists denounced slavery as a sin, and they framed the debate over slavery as a moral issue rather than an economic or political one. Called the “golden trumpet” of the movement, Phillips’ shrill denunciation of slavery won many converts to the abolitionist cause and attracted many other northerners to moderate anti-slave positions.

When the war began, Phillips and other abolitionists such as Frederick Douglass and William Lloyd Garrison exerted pressure on the Lincoln administration to make the destruction of slavery the primary objective of the war. For the first year and half, President Lincoln insisted that the Union’s war goal was reunion of the states. He did this in order to keep the border states of Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland, and Delaware from seceding. Not until the Emancipation Proclamation of September 1862 would the stated purpose of the war shift.

The incident in Cincinnati demonstrated the fierce resistance that existed in the northern states to the proposition of fighting a war to free the slaves. The most outspoken resisters lived in the “Butternut” region–the southern parts of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois. Called “Butternuts” because their homespun clothing was died a light brown from nut extracts, residents of the region did not own slaves but they shared many sentiments with Southerners. Lincoln encountered serious resistance from this area when he announced his Emancipation Proclamation.

“Wendall Phillips booed in Cincinnati.” 2009. The History Channel website. 23 Mar 2009, 03:49 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=2145.

 

On This Day

1664 – A charter to colonize Rhode Island was granted to Roger Williams in London.

1765 – Britain passed the Quartering Act that required the American colonies to house 10,000 British troops in public and private buildings.

1832 – Mormon Joseph Smith was beaten, tarred and feathered in Ohio.

1837 – Canada gave blacks the right to vote.

1868 – Metropolitan Life Insurance Company was formed.

1882 – In Berlin, German scientist Robert Koch announced the discovery of the tuberculosis germ (bacillus).

1898 – The first automobile was sold.

1906 – The “Census of the British Empire” revealed that England ruled 1/5 of the world.

1927 – Chinese Communists seized Nanking and break with Chiang Kai-shek over the Nationalist goals.

1946 – The Soviet Union announced that it was withdrawing its troops from Iran.

1955 – The first oil drill seagoing rig was put into service.

1972 – Great Britain imposed direct rule over Northern Ireland.

1995 – The U.S. House of Representatives passed a welfare reform package that made the most changes in social programs since the New Deal.

1999 – NATO launched air strikes against Yugoslavia (Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo and Vojvodina). The attacks marked the first time in its 50-year history that NATO attacked a sovereign country. The bombings were in response to Serbia’s refusal to sign a peace treaty with ethnic Albanians who were seeking independence for the province of Kosovo.

March 24, 1989

Exxon Valdez runs aground

The worst oil spill in U.S. territory begins when the supertanker Exxon Valdez, owned and operated by the Exxon Corporation, runs aground on a reef in Prince William Sound in southern Alaska. An estimated 11 million gallons of oil eventually spilled into the water. Attempts to contain the massive spill were unsuccessful, and wind and currents spread the oil more than 100 miles from its source, eventually polluting more than 700 miles of coastline. Hundreds of thousands of birds and animals were adversely affected by the environmental disaster.

It was later revealed that Joseph Hazelwood, the captain of the Valdez, was drinking at the time of the accident and allowed an uncertified officer to steer the massive vessel. In March 1990, Hazelwood was convicted of misdemeanor negligence, fined $50,000, and ordered to perform 1,000 hours of community service. In July 1992, an Alaska court overturned Hazelwood’s conviction, citing a federal statute that grants freedom from prosecution to those who report an oil spill.

Exxon itself was condemned by the National Transportation Safety Board and in early 1991 agreed under pressure from environmental groups to pay a penalty of $100 million and provide $1 billion over a 10-year period for the cost of the cleanup. However, later in the year, both Alaska and Exxon rejected the agreement, and in October 1991 the oil giant settled the matter by paying $25 million, less than 4 percent of the cleanup aid promised by Exxon earlier that year.

“Exxon Valdez runs aground.” 2009. The History Channel website. 23 Mar 2009, 03:46 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=4860.

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27
Feb
08

On This Day 2-27-08

1964: Pisa Tower needs help

On February 27, 1964, the Italian government announces that it is accepting suggestions on how to save the renowned Leaning Tower of Pisa from collapse. It had been shifting since the first three stories were constructed on soft ground in the 12th century. A century later, four more stories were erected at a slight angle in the hope of correcting the tilt.

However, by the 1960s, the tower was 17 feet off-center, and experts warned that the medieval building was in serious danger of toppling in an earthquake or storm. An average of 250 tourists climbed the tower daily, and some local officials feared that if the tilt were corrected, the tourists might stop coming. In 1966 and 1985, attempts to reduce the lean by drilling were aborted when the tower tilted further south. In 1990, the Italian government closed the Leaning Tower’s doors to the public out of safety concerns.

Finally, in 1999, engineers began a process of soil extraction that showed positive effects. Once an 18-inch reduction is achieved, probably sometime in 2001, the project will end. This reduction will give another 300 years of life to the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and it will once again be open to the public.

http://www.thehistorychannel.co.uk/site/this_day_in_history/this_day_February_27.php

1801 – The city of Washington, DC. was placed under congressional jurisdiction.

1861 – In Warsaw, Russian troops fired on a crowd protesting Russian rule over Poland. Five protesting marchers were killed in the incident.

1896 – The “Charlotte Observer” published a picture of an X-ray photograph made by Dr. H.L. Smith. The photograph showed a perfect picture of all the bones of a hand and a bullet that Smith had placed between the third and fourth fingers in the palm.

1900 – In South Africa, the British recieved an unconditional surrender from Boer Gen. Piet Cronje at Paardeberg.

1922 – The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the 19th Amendment that guaranteed women the right to vote.

1933 – The Reichstag, Germany’s parliament building in Berlin, was set afire. The Nazis accused Communist for the fire.

1939 – The U.S. Supreme Court outlawed sit-down strikes.

1951 – The 22nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, limiting U.S. Presidents to two terms.

1973 – The American Indian Movement occupied Wounded Knee in South Dakota.

1990 – The Exxon Corporation and Exxon Shipping were indicted on five criminal counts in reference to the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill.

29
Jan
08

On This Day 1-29-08: Charles Starkweather

1845 – Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” was published for the first time in the “New York Evening Mirror.”

1850 – Henry Clay introduced in the Senate a compromise bill on slavery that included the admission of California into the Union as a free state.

1861 – In America, Kansas became the 34th state of the Union.

1886 – The first successful petrol-driven motorcar, built by Karl Benz, was patented.

1900 – The American Baseball League was organized in Philadelphia, PA. It consisted of 8 teams.

1916 – In World War I, Paris was bombed by German zeppelins for the first time.

1949 – “The Newport News” was commissioned as the first air-conditioned naval ship in Virginia.

1958 – Charles Starkweather was captured by police in Wyoming.

1979 – U.S. President Carter formally welcomed Chinese Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping to the White House. The visit followed the establishment of diplomatic relations.

1987 – “Physician’s Weekly” announced that the smile on the face of Leonardo DeVinci’s Mona Lisa was caused by a “…facial paralysis resulting from a swollen nerve behind the ear.”

1990 – Joseph Hazelwood, the former skipper of the Exxon Valdez, went on trial in Anchorage, AK, on charges that stemmed from America’s worst oil spill. Hazelwood was later acquitted of all the major charges and was convicted of a misdemeanor.

1997 – America Online agreed to give refunds to frustrated customers under threat of lawsuits across the country. Customers were unable to log on after AOL offered a flat $19.95-a-month rate.

1998 – A bomb exploded at an abortion clinic in Birmingham, AL, killing an off-duty policeman and severely wounding a nurse. Eric Rudolph was charged with this bombing and three other attacks in Atlanta.

I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allan Poe

For more on Charles Starkweather: http://www.crimelibrary.com/notorious_murders/mass/starkweather/index_1.html




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