President Warren G. Harding delivered the first speech by a sitting U.S. President that condemned the lynching of African-Americans in the deep South. As the 1920 Republican presidential nominee, Harding had advocated civil rights for blacks, despite evidence of wide opposition among white voters. (1921)
More Good News on this Date:
- Thomas Edison, after frustrating months testing the usual choice, platinum wire, to light an electric bulb, decided to try carbonized cotton thread–and the first commercially practical incandescent light bulb lasted 13½ hours before burning out (1879)
- The Guggenheim Museum, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, opened in New York City (1959)
- North Korea and the U.S. signed an agreement that requires North Korea to stop its nuclear weapons program and agree to inspections (1994)
Also, on this day in 1854, Florence Nightingale, founder of the nursing profession, left for Turkey with 38 women she’d trained to tend British soldiers dying from unsanitary conditions in the Crimean War. As a noted statistician, she charted seasonal sources of patient mortality in the military field hospital she managed.(See her life story on wikipedia)
And, on this day in 1940, the first edition of Ernest Hemingway’s novel For Whom the Bell Tolls was published. The story, about a guerrilla fighter during the Spanish Civil War, is regarded as one of Hemingway’s best works. The book sold half a million copies within months, and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Its title comes from well-known prose by John Donne that begins, “No man is an island”.