October 21 Peace Love Activism

October 21 Peace Love Activism

Black History

William Lloyd Garrison

October 21 Peace Love Activism, 

October 21, 1835: William Lloyd Garrison was a prominent white abolitionist and newspaper editor in the 19th century. Born in 1805 in Newburyport, Massachusetts, to English immigrants, Garrison co-founded his first newspaper at age 22 and began to focus on the issue of slavery. In 1829, Garrison became the co-editor of the Baltimore-based Genius of Universal Emancipation, through which he and his colleagues criticized proponents of slavery.

Unlike most American abolitionists at the time, Garrison demanded immediate emancipation of enslaved black people rather than gradual emancipation. In 1830, he founded The Liberator, which continued to publish criticisms of slavery. By that time, Garrison had become a vocal opponent of the American Colonization Society, which sought to reduce the number of free blacks by relocating them to Africa. In 1832, Garrison helped to organize the American Anti-Slavery Society and sought to keep the organization unaffiliated with any political party. He also advocated for women to be allowed equal participation in the organization, a radical stance nearly 90 years before women in America obtained the right to vote.

On October 21, 1835, Garrison attended a meeting held by the Boston Female Anti-Slavery Society to hear remarks from George Thompson, a British abolitionist and personal friend. Thompson had been warned that a pro-slavery mob planned to tar-and-feather him and declined to attend the meeting. The mob seized Garrison instead, dragged him through the streets by a rope around his waist, and threatened to lynch him until he was rescued by police. Garrison spent the night in a city jail and left Boston the next morning. He remained a staunch opponent of slavery and lived to see the institution’s demise 30 years later. (see May 1836)
Montgomery Bus Boycott
October 21, 1955:  in Montgomery, AL, Mary Louise Smith (age 18) was arrested for violating segregation laws in Montgomery, Ala. She, along with three other African-American women (Aurelia Browder, Susie McDonald and Claudette Colvin) refused to surrender their bus seats to whites (months before Rosa Parks does the same). They brought the famous Browder v. Gayle lawsuit that successfully resulted in the Alabama law being ruled unconstitutional. (BH, see Oct 22; Feminism & MBB, see Dec 1: Browder v Gayle, see June 5, 1956)

October 21 Music et al

October 21 Peace Love Activism, 

The Beatles’ Christmas Show
October 21, 1963: 100,000 tickets go on sale for The Beatles’ Christmas Show. Manager Brian Epstein, who himself had had theatrical aspirations, conceived a variety stage production featuring the group. (see Oct 31)
Jack Kerouac
October 21, 1969: On the Road (1957) author, Jack Kerouac, died. Created term “Beat” to describe the so-called Beat Generation as well as providing titles to two of the most famous writings of that era: Howl (1955), by Allen Ginsberg and Naked Lunch (1959), by William Burroughs. (NYT obit) (see April 5, 1997)
“To Sir With Love” 
October 21 – November 24, 1967: “To Sir With Love” by Lulu #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

October 21 Peace Love Activism


October 21 - 22, 1967: in Washington, D.C. nearly 100,000 people gathered to protest the Vietnam War. More than 50,000 of the protesters marched to the Pentagon to ask for an end to the conflict. (Nov 7)


October 21, 1977: Judge Bernard Decker of the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois issues a preliminary injunction prohibiting the Village of Skokie from enforcing three ordinances aimed at preventing Frank Collin and his Nationalist Socialist party sympathizers from marching in Skokie. (see January 27, 1978)


October 21, 2013: Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey announced that he would drop his legal challenge to same-sex marriage, hours after gay couples started exchanging vows in midnight ceremonies across the state. His decision effectively removed the last hurdle to making same-sex marriage legal in New Jersey. At 12:01 a.m., New Jersey joined 13 other states and the District of Columbia in allowing gay couples to marry. (see Nov 5) (NYT article)

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