November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Cultural Milestone

November 18, 1883: North American railroads adopted Standard Railway Time at noon sharp. With the implementation of SRT came the delineation of four continental time zones: Eastern Standard Time, Central Daylight Time, Mountain Standard Time and Pacific Daylight Time. (next CM, see May 31, 1884)


Voting Rights

November 18, 1913: a mass suffrage meeting in Washington, DC, heard an address by the British suffragist leader Emmeline Pethick Lawrence. The meeting was also the occasion to welcome back to Washington leaders of the American Congressional Union, the principal lobby organization for a suffrage amendment to the Constitution. The Congressional Union leaders had just returned from a lobbying trip through western states in the U.S. 

The American Congressional Union was led by Alice Paul, who then led militant suffrage pickets of the White House in 1917, which played a major role on causing President Woodrow Wilson to end his opposition to women’s suffrage. (see Nov 21)

Alice Paul

November 18, 1917:  Alice Paul, leader of the militant protests in front of the White House in support of a constitutional amendment granting women the right to vote, was on this day transferred from the prison to the prison hospital. She and several other supporters had begun a hunger strike in the prison, and after 78 days was force-fed on November 8, 1917. Paul had been confined in the psychopathic ward of the prison, and was so weak from the hunger strike that she was transferred to the prison hospital on a stretcher. 

Paul managed to smuggle out of the prison a hand-written account of her ordeal. She explained that she had been denied letters, books, visitors, and decent food.

Paul had first organized pickets of the White House in early 1913. as Woodrow Wilson became president. The picketing escalated in 1917, and members of Paul’s group were on several occasions attacked by anti-feminists while the police stood by making no arrests. (see Nov 21)

Women’s Health

November 18, 1921: Margaret Sanger gave a speech on “The Morality of Birth Control,” at the Park Theater in New York City five days after the police had closed down an earlier meeting of the first birth control conference in the U.S where she was scheduled to speak.. The New York Times reported that the police intervention on that occasion was “brought about at the instance of Archbishop Patrick J. Hayes of the NY Roman Catholic Archdiocese.”

In 1923 Margaret Sanger successfully opened the first legal Women’s Health clinic in the U.S. with the stated intent of only using contraceptives for medical purposes, such as the prevention of life-threatening pregnancies. (see April 23, 1929)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism



November 18, 1918:  Latvia independent from Russia. (see Dec 1)


November 18, 1956:  Morocco independent from France and Spain. (see March 6, 1957)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Black History

Marcus Garvey

November 18, 1927: President Coolidge commuted Garvey’s sentence. Garvey wass released from the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary and taken to New Orleans for deportation. (see Garvey for full story)

Sen. Coleman Blease

In 1928, Sen. Coleman Blease (D-SC), a Ku Klux Klan supporter who had previously served as South Carolina’s governor, made a third attempt to amend the U.S. Constitution in order to ban interracial marriage in every state. Like its predecessors, it failed. (see June 12)

Martin Luther King, Jr, the FBI
November 18 Peace Love Art Activism
Albany Movement

November 18, 1962: Martin Luther King, Jr accused agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Albany, Ga., of siding with the segregationists. “One of the great problems we face with the FBI in the South is that the agents are white Southerners who have been influenced by the mores of the community. To maintain their status, they have to be friendly with the local police and people who are promoting segregation. Every time I saw an FBI man in Albany, they were with the local police force.” (next BH, see Nov 20; see AM for expanded story)

John Coltrane

November 18, 1963: John Coltrane recorded his civil rights elegy “Alabama” at Van Gelder Studio in Englewood Cliffs, NJ three months after the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing of September 15.

McCoy Tyner on piano, Jimmy Garrison on bass, and Elvin Jones on drums accompanied Coltrane. Martin Luther King’s speech, delivered in the church sanctuary three days after the bombing, had inspired Coltrane who patterned his saxophone playing on it. Like the speech, “Alabama” shifts its tone from one of mourning to one of renewed determination for the struggle against racially motivated crimes. (see Nov 19)

J. Edgar Hoover
November 18 Peace Love Art Activism
Martin Luther King, Jr and the FBI

November 18, 1964: FBI director J. Edgar Hoover characterized Martin Luther King Jr as “the most notorious liar in the country.” King replied that Hoover “has apparently faltered under the awesome burden, complexities, and responsibilities of his office.”

In 2014, on the 50th anniversary of Hoover’s characterization the radio show, Democracy Now, had an extended piece on the relationship between Martin Luther King, Jr and the FBI. (BH, see Nov 18; MLK, see Nov 21)

George Whitmore, Jr

November 18, 1964: Whitmore convicted by a jury before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice David L. Malbin of the Elba Borrero assault and attempted rape, but Malbin delayed sentencing pending Whitmore’s trial for the Wylie-Hoffert murders. (next BH, see Nov 21; see GW for expanded story)

Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing

November 18, 1977: The NY Times reportedFourteen years after a dynamite bomb exploded here at the 16th Street Baptist Church and killed four young black girls in one of the worst racial incidents in Southern history, a jury of three blacks and nine whites delivered a murder conviction of Robert  Chambliss. (Robert Chambliss guilty) (BH, see February 1, 1978; Sixteenth Street, see May 1, 2001)

Chicago Police Torture James Cody

November 18, 1983:  a Black man named James Cody was beaten with a flashlight, subjected to electric shock on his testicles and buttocks, and threatened with castration by officers acting under Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge. Over the course of almost 30 years, Commander Burge oversaw and participated in the torture of over 100 Black men, resulting in scores of forced confessions. When Commander Burge first took command of the jurisdiction known as Area 2 as a detective in 1972, he and his men—known as the “Midnight Crew”—began forcing confessions using brutal torture practices such as beating, suffocation, electric shock, burning, Russian roulette, and mock execution. [EJI article] (next BH, see Dec  9)

William Zantzinger

November 18, 1991: Zantzinger pleaded guilty to 50 misdemeanor counts of unfair and deceptive trade practices. He was sentenced to 18 months in the county jail and fined $50,000. The judge also sentenced Zantzinger to 2,400 hours of community service and directed him to help groups that advocate low-cost housing.  [2009 NYT obit] (Zanzinger, see January 3, 2009; BH, see April 29, 1992)


November 18, 1993: black and white leaders endorsed a new constitution for South Africa that tried to balance majority rule with safeguards to reassure whites and other minorities. But the Zulu-based Inkatha Freedom Party and an array of white separatist groups threatened to boycott elections and hint at insurrection. [NYT article] (Apartheid, see January 3, 1994; Mandela, see April 27, 1994)

Trayvon Martin Shooting

November 18, 2013: police arrested George Zimmerman for allegedly pointing a shotgun at his girlfriend and pushing her out of her house as he packed to move out, the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office said. Zimmerman barricaded himself in the house Samantha Scheibe rented in Apopka, which he had shared with her since around August, Chief Deputy Dennis Lemma said at a news conference. She gave deputies a key, and they pushed aside furniture he had piled against the door. [NYP article] (see February 24, 2015)


November 18, 2014: without any major filings or motions from either side, the city of Cleveland settled a wrongful death suit with the families of Timothy Russell and Marissa Williams (see November 29, 2012)  for $3 million. Police killed Russell and Williams at the end of a car chase that most likely started when a cop mistook the backfire of a car for a gunshot.

Of the 13 officers involved in the fatal shooting one was indicted for involuntary manslaughter. Five others were charged with dereliction of duty for allowing the chase to escalate. They had all pled not guilty. (see 137 for expanded story)

Malcolm X Murder

November 18, 2021:  the Manhattan district attorney and lawyers for  Muhammad A. Aziz and Khalil Islam , two of the men found guilty of the assassination of Malcolm X in 1965abnnounced that the men’s convictions were thrown out.

For decades, historians had cast doubt on the case against the two men, who each spent more than 20 years in prison.

“It’s long overdue,” said Bryan Stevenson a civil rights lawyer and the founder of the Equal Justice initiative. “This is one of the most prominent figures of the 20th century who commanded enormous attention and respect. And yet, our system failed.”

A 22-month investigation conducted jointly by the Manhattan district attorney’s office and lawyers for the two men found that prosecutors and two of the nation’s premier law enforcement agencies — the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New York Police Department — had withheld key evidence that, had it been turned over, would likely have led to the men’s acquittal.

The review did not uncover a police or government conspiracy to murder  Malcolm X. It also left unanswered questions about how and why the police and the federal government failed to prevent the assassination by Mujahid Abdul Halim, who was also found guilty, and his conviction stood.

Altogether, the re-investigation found that had the new evidence been presented to a jury, it may well have led to acquittals. And Mr. Aziz, 83, who was released in 1985, and Mr. Islam, who was released in 1987 and died in 2009 at age 74, would not have been compelled to spend decades fighting to clear their names.  [NYT story] (next BH, see )

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Technological Milestones

November 18

November 18, 1928: the first successful sound-synchronized animated cartoon, Walt Disney’s “Steamboat Willie” starring Mickey Mouse, premiered in New York. (see January 31, 1930) 

November 18

November 18, 1963: the advent of the push-button phone, officially introduced in two Pennsylvania communities, Carnegie and Greensburg. (see Nov 22)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism


November 18, 1961: President Kennedy sent 18,000 military advisors to South Vietnam. [NYT article] (see Dec 11)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Cold War

November 18, 1963: at the Americana Hotel in Miami President John F. Kennedy told the Inter-American Press Association that only one issue separated the United States from Fidel Castro’s Cuba: Castro’s “conspirators” had handed Cuban sovereignty to “forces beyond the hemisphere” (meaning the Soviet Union), which were using Cuba “to subvert the other American republics.” Kennedy said, “As long as this is true, nothing is possible. Without it, everything is possible.”

That same day, Ambassador William Attwood, a Kennedy delegate to the United Nations, secretly called Castro’s aide and physician, Rene Vallejo, to discuss a possible secret meeting in Havana between Attwood and Castro that might improve the Cuban-American relationship. Attwood had been told by Castro’s U.N. ambassador, Carlos Lechuga, in September 1963, that the Cuban leader wished to establish back-channel communications with Washington.

Kennedy’s national security adviser, McGeorge Bundy, told Attwood that J.F.K. wanted to “know more about what is on Castro’s mind before committing ourselves to further talks on Cuba.” He said that as soon as Attwood and Lechuga could agree on an agenda, the president would tell him what to say to Castro (see Cuban Missile Crisis)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

November 18 Music et al

November 18, 1963: NBC’s evening news program, The Huntley-Brinkley Report, aired a four-minute segment on the Beatles. (see Nov 22)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism


Anita Bryant

November 18, 1977: a federal judge dismissed a $5 million lawsuit accusing Anita Bryant of conducting a hate campaign against homosexuals. The suit had been filed by the parents of Robert Hillsborough (Hillsborough, see June 21, 1977 ; next LGBTQ, see November 27, 1978)

Goodridge v. Department of Public Health

November 18, 2003: the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled in Goodridge v Department of Public Health that the state constitution mandates the freedom to marry for same-sex couples. Three months later, the Court reaffirmed its decision, stating that only marriage – not separate and lesser mechanisms, such as civil union – sufficiently protects same-sex couples and their families. (see February 4, 2004)

Rev Frank Schaefer

November 18, 2013: a 13-member jury convicted the Rev Frank Schaefer, a United Methodist pastor, of breaking church law by officiating his son’s same-sex wedding. Schaefer could be defrocked after a high-profile trial that has rekindled debate over the denomination’s policy on gay marriage. The Methodist church put  Schaefer on trial in southeastern Pennsylvania, accusing him of breaking his pastoral vows by presiding over the 2007 ceremony in Massachusetts. The jury convicted Schaefer on two charges: that he officiated a gay wedding, and that he showed “disobedience to the order and discipline of the United Methodist Church.” (LGBTQ, see Nov 18; Schaefer, see Dec 16)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Ronald Reagan/Iran–Contra

November 18, 1987: U.S. Senate and House panels released reports charging President Ronald Reagan with ‘ultimate responsibility’ for the affair. [NYT article] (see March 16, 1988)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism


November 18, 2002: in August 2001, Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore had a 5,280-pound block of granite with the Ten Commandments engraved on it in the rotunda of the Alabama Judicial Building.

A group of lawyers consisting of Stephen R. Glassroth, Melinda Maddox and Beverly Howard, who felt their clients might not receive fair treatment if they did not share Moore’s religious opinion, and that the placement of the monument violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, filed civil suits in Federal Court against Justice Moore in his official capacity as Chief Justice to have the monument removed.

On this date, the District Court held the monument violated the Establishment Clause. The following day, the District Court directed Moore to remove the monument from the building. (see August 22, 2003)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Occupy Wall Street

November 18, 2011: a group of University of California Davis occupy protesters who were sitting passively on the ground with their arms interlocked was pepper sprayed by an campus security guard, an action the university chancellor  called “chilling to us all.” (see January 3, 2012)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism



November 18, 2013: US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor called for a new look at whether judges should be allowed to overrule juries to impose death sentences, saying that elected judges in Alabama “appear to have succumbed to electoral pressures” in making such decisions.

Although three states allow judges to override jury recommendations that a killer receive life in prison — Florida and Delaware are the others — only judges in Alabama are using the power. (see February 11, 2014)

Julius Jones

November 18, 2021: Gov. Kevin Stitt  of Oklahoma called off the execution of Julius Jones, a death-row inmate, just hours before he was to be put to death, in a case in which the state’s Pardon and Parole Board had twice recommended that his sentence be commuted.

“After prayerful consideration and reviewing materials presented by all sides of this case, I have determined to commute Julius Jones’s sentence to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole,” Stitt said in a statement.

Jones was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death in 2002. He was found guilty of killing Paul Howell, who was in a car in the driveway of his parents’ home when he was carjacked and fatally shot in 1999. The commutation came less than a month after the Supreme Court, with its three more liberal members dissenting, lifted a stay of execution that a federal appeals court had granted to Mr. Jones and another Oklahoma death row inmate, John Marion Grant, who was executed last month. [NYT article] (next DP, see March 24, 2022)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Consumer Protection

Safe Water report

November 18, 2019: two national non-profit groups, DigDeep and the US Water Alliance, released a new report, “Closing the Water Access Gap in the United States: A National Action Plan.”  The study found that more than two million Americans were living without running water, indoor plumbing, or wastewater treatment.

The report was most comprehensive national study on the more than two million Americans who lackrf access to water service. The report filled a knowledge gap: there is no one entity—a federal agency or research institution—that collected comprehensive data on the scope of the United States water access problem.

The report made several recommendations to help close the water gap in the United States. Recommendations included re-introducing Census questions about whether homes have working taps and toilets, as well as changes to how the federal government funds and regulates water systems for rural and unincorporated areas. There are also recommendations for the philanthropic and global WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene) sectors to drive community empowerment, deploy innovative technologies, and apply successful WASH models from abroad here in the United States. [Yahoo news article]


November 18, 2019: under pressure from his political advisers and lobbyists to factor in the potential pushback from his supporters, President Trump resisted moving forward with any action on vaping, while saying he still wanted to study the issue.

Even a watered-down ban on flavored e-cigarettes that exempted menthol, which was widely expected, appeared to have been set aside. [NYT article] (next CP & vaping, see January 2, 2020)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism


November 18, 2019: NJ Senate President Steve Sweeney (D) and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Nicholas Scutari (D) announced that while they had “made further attempts to generate additional support in the Senate to get this done legislatively,” the “votes just aren’t there.” As a result, they filed a proposal that would allow residents to vote on legalization as a constitutional amendment.

“We are moving forward with a plan to seek voter approval to legalize adult use marijuana in New Jersey,” the leaders said in a press release. “We introduced legislation today to authorize a public referendum for a proposal that will lead to the creation of a system that allows adults to purchase and use marijuana for recreational purposes in a responsible way.” (see CCII for expanded modern cannabis history)

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism

Immigration History

November 18, 2020: Judge Emmet G. Sullivan of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia blocked President Trump’s policy of turning away migrant children at the border as public health risks, ruling that the expulsion of thousands of children without due process exceeded the authority that public health emergency decrees confer.

The Trump administration had since March used an emergency decree from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to effectively seal the border to migrants, rapidly returning them to Mexico or Central America without allowing immigration authorities to hear their claims for asylum. Top homeland security officials had cited the potential spread of the coronavirus that could come from detaining asylum seekers in border facilities.

But Sullivan said that while the emergency rule allowed the authorities to prevent the “introduction” of foreigners into the United States, it did not give border authorities the ability turn away children who would normally be placed in shelters and provided an opportunity to have a claim for refuge heard. The order applies across the country. [NYT article] [next IH, see Dec 4]

November 18 Peace Love Art Activism