September 5, 1912: John Milton Cage, the experimental American composer, was born. To try to post a “typical” Cage composition would be impossible, but the sounds his music explored allowed other musicians to hear new sounds, too.
September 5, 1882,US Labor History: some 10,000 workers assembled in New York City to participate in America’s first Labor Day parade. After marching from City Hall, past reviewing stands in Union Square, and then uptown to 42nd Street, the workers and their families gathered in Wendel’s Elm Park for a picnic, concert, and speeches. This first Labor Day celebration was eagerly organized and executed by New York’s Central Labor Union, an umbrella group made up of representatives from many local unions. Debate continues to this day as to who originated the idea of a workers’ holiday, but it definitely emerged from the ranks of organized labor at a time when they wanted to demonstrate the strength of their burgeoning movement and inspire improvements in their working conditions.
September 5, 1917,US Labor History: U.S. Department of Justice agents made simultaneous raids on dozens of International Workers of the World meeting halls across the country. Minutes books, correspondence, mailing lists, and publications were seized, with the U.S. Department of Justice removing five tons of material from the IWW’s General Office in Chicago alone. This seized material was scoured for possible violations of the Espionage Act of 1917 and other laws, with a view to future prosecution of the organization’s leaders, organizers, and key activists.
September 5, 1957,Beat Generation: Jack Kerouac’s On The Road published. It was based on the travels of Kerouac and his friends, particularly Neal Cassady and Allen Ginsberg, across America. It is considered a defining work of the postwar Beat Generation with its protagonists living life against a backdrop of jazz, poetry, and drug use. The novel underwent several drafts before Kerouac completed it in April 1951.
When the book was originally released, The New York Times hailed it as “the most beautifully executed, the clearest and the most important utterance yet made by the generation Kerouac himself named years ago as ‘beat,’ and whose principal avatar he is.”
September 5, 1960,BLACK HISTORY & Mohammed Ali: after winning three preliminary bouts, Cassius Clay defeated Poland’s Zbigniew Pietrzkowski to win the light heavyweight gold medal. He became the World Light Heavyweight Olympic Champion less than six years after his bicycle is stolen in Louisville. Cassius Clay returned to the US to a hero’s welcome. He was an honoree at parades in both New York City and Louisville. Despite his accomplishments for the US, he was denied service in a segregated restaurant in Kentucky.
September 5, 1965 – San Francisco writer Michael Fallon applies the term “hippie” to the SF counterculture in an article about the Blue Unicorn coffeehouse, where LEMAR (Legalize Marijuana) & the Sexual Freedom League meet
September 5, 1966, The Beatles after live performances:John Lennon started work on his role as Private Gripweed in the film ‘How I Won The War’. The black comedy directed by Richard Lester, was filmed in Spain in Almería Province and saw Lennon, taking a long-overdue break from the Beatles after nearly four years of constant touring.
September 5, 1969, Vietnam &My Lai Massacre: the day before his scheduled discharge from the Army, Lieutenant Calley was charged with six counts of premeditated murder. The public information office issued a press release stating Calley was being retained because of an ongoing investigation.
September 5, 1972, Feminism: Sarah Lawrence College begins a graduate program in Women’s History, the first such Master’s degree program to be offered by a major college.
September 5 – 6, 1972, TERRORISM: Munich Massacre: Eleven Israeli athletes at the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich are murdered after 8 members of the Arab terrorist group Black September invade the Olympic Village; 5 guerillas and 1 policeman are also killed in a failed hostage rescue.
September 5, 1975, in Sacramento, CA, Lynette Fromme, a follower of jailed cult leader Charles Manson, attempted to assassinate President Gerald Ford, but was thwarted by a Secret Service agent.
September 5, 1964: “House of the Rising Sun” by the Animals hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.
When songs by British invaders like the Rolling Stones and the Animals
started playing on American radio airwaves, many teenagers loved their gritty soulful feel. Little did we American teenagers realize, as the Stones and Animals did, that the songs were American. “House of the Rising Sun” is such an example. The song’s origins may go as far back as the 1700s. The classic American bluesman, Leadbelly, recorded two versions in the mid-1940s.