February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Native Americans

February 8, 1887: Congress passed The Dawes Act of 1887. It authorized the President to survey Indian tribal land and divide it into allotments for individual Indians. The stated objective of the Dawes Act was to stimulate assimilation of Indians into American society. Individual ownership of land was seen as an essential step. The act also provided that the government would purchase Indian land “excess” to that needed for allotment and open it up for settlement by non-Indians. (see December 29, 1890)

February 8 Peace Love Activism

US Labor History

Cripple Creek Strike

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

February 8, 1894: union miners in Cripple Creek, Colorado  begin what became a five-month strike that started when mine owners cut wages to $2.50 a day, from $3. The state militia was called out in support of the strikers—the only time in U.S. history that a militia was directed to side with the workers. The strike ended in victory for the union. (see Mar 25)

Wobbly meetings illegal


February 8, 1912: a San Diego city ordinance restricting street meetings in the central business district went into effect. Almost immediately, police arrested forty-one International Workers of the World members for violating the ordinance. (see Mar 9)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

February 8, 1955: Representatives of the AFL and CIO signed an agreement to merge, beginning a long period of unity within organized labor. George Meany will lead the organization for two decades, taking labor in a generally conservative direction. “We do not seek to recast American society,” Meany says. “We seek an ever rising standard of living.” Big Labor gradually became a complacent interest group rather than a social movement. (see Dec 5)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Cultural Milestone

February 8, 1910: The Boy Scouts of America was incorporated.   (CM, see March 6, 1912; BSA, see May 7, 1967)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism


The Birth of a Nation

February 8, 1915: D. W. Griffith’s  The Birth of a Nation premiered in Los Angeles. Although local censors approved the film, city council members responded to concerns about the racist nature of the picture by ordering it suppressed. Released under the title, The Clansman, the movie debuted only after Griffith sought an injunction from the court.

Griffith’s story centers on two white families torn apart by the Civil War and reunited by what one subtitle calls, “common defense of their Aryan birthright.” Promoting a skewed historical vision of a war-torn South further abused by carpetbaggers, scalawags, and radical Republicans, the film remakes Lincoln as a friend of the South. “I shall deal with them as though they had never been away,” Griffith’s Lincoln says. In The Birth of a Nation, the Ku Klux Klan rushes in to fill the void left by Lincoln’s untimely death and the chaos of Reconstruction. (see Feb 18)

Marcus Garvey

February 8, 1925: after being arrested at the 125th Street train station in New York, Garvey taken to Atlanta Federal Penitentiary and incarcerated. (BH, see Aug 8;  see MG for expanded chronology)

Greensboro Four

February 8 – 14 1960:  students in Winston-Salem, N.C., and Durham, N.C., held sit-ins to demonstrate their solidarity with Greensboro students. Sit-in protests quickly followed in North Carolina cities such as Charlotte, Raleigh, Fayetteville and High Point. The movement also gained momentum and spread to Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and even F.W. Woolworth stores in New York City. (next BH, see Feb 9; see G4 for expanded chronology)

Hattie Carroll

February 8, 1963: Baltimore, MD. At the Spinsters’ Ball at the Emerson Hotel, a very drunk and verbally abusive William Devereux “Billy” Zantzinger hit 51-year old Hattie Carroll  after she was slow to serve a drink to him.

Carroll had a history of heart problems. Later, she collapsed and died. (1991 Washington Post article) [on October 23, 1963, Bob Dylan will write, “The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll.” (BH, see  April 4; Zanzinger, see Aug 28)

Orangeburg Massacre

February 8, 1968: white state troopers fired into a mostly African American crowd on the campus of South Carolina State College, an historically black college in Orangeburg, South Carolina. 28 were wounded. Three killed. (see 1968 Orangeburg Massacre for the expanded story and the sadly not unexpected results. (BH, see Feb 12; OM, see “In October 1970”)

 Stop and Frisk Policy

February 8, 2012: NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn wrote to Police Commissioner Ray Kelly demanding greater oversight of the NYPD’s Stop-and-Frisks. (see Feb 10)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Women’s Health

Emma Goldman

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

February 8, 1916: Goldman lectured in NYC on birth control. Three days later, authorities arrest her for the illegal lecture.  (see Goldman for expanded story)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism


Nevada uses lethal gas

February 8, 1924: Nevada carried out the first execution by lethal gas in American history. The executed man was Gee Jon, a member of a Chinese gang who was convicted of murdering a rival gang member. Lethal gas was adopted by Nevada in 1921 as a more humane method of carrying out its death sentences, as opposed to the traditional techniques of execution by hanging, firing squad, or electrocution. (see Aug 22)

House limits death penalty appeals

February 8, 1995: the US House of Representatives  voted 297-132 to limit inmate appeals of death sentences to one year in state cases.   (see March 7, 1995)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism


Ho Chi Minh returns to Vietnam

February 8, 1941: Ho Chi Minh, disguised as one of the local Nung people, slipped across the Chinese border into Tonkin (Vietnam) near the remote mountain village of Pac Bo and set up  a headquarters. (see May 10)

US bombing begins

February 8, 1965: U.S. starts air bombing North Vietnam. (see Feb 9)



February 8 – 10, 1967: CALC [Clergy and Laity Concerned] (had formed in October 1965 as the Clergy Concerned about Vietnam) organized a nationwide “Fast for Peace.”  The FBI investigated CALC as a threat to national security. (see Feb 15)

Operation Lam Son 719

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

February 8, 1971:  three South Vietnamese divisions drive into Laos to attack two major enemy bases. Unknowingly, they are walking into a North Vietnamese trap. Over the next month, more than 9,000 South Vietnamese troops are killed or wounded. More than two thirds of the South Vietnamese Army’s armored vehicles are destroyed, along with hundreds of U.S. helicopters and planes. (see Feb 26)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Pledge of Allegiance

On February 7, the Rev. George M. Docherty had suggested to President Eisenhower that the phrase “under God” be included in the Pledge of Allegiance. The next day Eisenhower acted on Rev Docherty’s suggestion and Rep. Charles Oakman (R-Mich.), introduced a bill to that effect. (see Pledge for expanded chronology)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

February 8 Music et al

Teenage Culture

February 8 – 21, 1960:  “Teen Angel” by Mark Dinning #1 Billboard Hot 100. Released the previous October, radio stations were reluctant to play it and it was banned by the BBC. Performed by Sha Na Na at Woodstock. Third of three #1 songs in a row in which a person or persons die. (see July 18 – Aug 7)


February 8, 1963:  The Beatles were thrown out of the ABC Ballroom in Carlisle (UK) for wearing leather jackets. (see Feb 11)

Louie Louie

February 8, 1964: Max Firetag, the music publisher of the song “Louie Louie” offered $1,000.00 to anyone who could find anything ‘suggestive’ in the lyrics to the song.  (TC, see Sept 16; see Louie, Louie, for expanded story) 


February 8 – 14, 1969:  the Diana Ross and the  Supremes with the Temptations album TCB is the Billboard #1 album. The album was the soundtrack to a 1968 TV special.

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

The Red Scare

February 8, 1968:  Planet of the Apes released. The backstory of the movie is that Michael Wilson wrote the script. Wilson been blacklisted during the Cold War after refusing to cooperate with the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) in September 1951. (He was not one of the Hollywood Ten, who testified beginning on October 27, 1947, and were blacklisted.)

When he was able to return to work under his own name, he took his revenge for the blacklisting by including a scene in the Planet of the Apes that wickedly parodies the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). In the scene, Charleton Heston stands naked, literally, in front of a committee of apes that interrogates him. (Roger Ebert review) (see Feb 19

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism


February 8, 1996: the Telecommunications Act passed and required that computers, telephones, closed captioning, and many other telecommunication devices and equipment be made accessible. (FCC text) (see  February 12, 1998)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism


February 8, 1999: House prosecutors and Clinton’s lawyer offered closing arguments. (see Clinton for expanded story)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism


February 8, 2015:  Judge Roy Moore, Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, issued an order commanding all probate judges in the state to refuse to issue marriage licenses same-sex couples. “Effective immediately, no probate judge of the State of Alabama nor any agent or employee of any Alabama probate judge shall issue or recognize a marriage license that is inconsistent” with the Alabama Constitution or state law, the chief justice wrote in his order.

Moore’s edict came as a temporary stay on a federal court ruling striking down the state’s ban on marriage equality was set to expire the following day. Under federal law, the expiration of this stay whould compel every public servant tasked with issuing civil marriage licenses to extend that service to same-sex couples starting February 9. The initial ruling, handed down by U.S. District Judge Callie V.S. Granade, found the state’s marriage ban violated the 14th Amendment of the U.S. constitution. (see Feb 9)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Immigration History

February 8, 2018: immigration activist Ravi Ragbir was scheduled to be deported to Trinidad and Tobago on February 10, on this date Ragbir’s lawyers filed a First Amendment suit claiming that ICE had targeted their client because he was an outspoken activist as the director of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City.

The government agreed to delay his removal until the court can decide whether his rights have been violated.

Ragbir’s case was one of a growing number in which federal judges had ruled to halt both individual and mass deportations. The week before, a judge in a New Jersey district court temporarily stopped the deportation of Indonesian Christians, longtime community members in Highland Park, N.J., who had been swept up by immigration agents.

The day before that, in Boston, a judge made a similar ruling in the case of 50 Indonesian Christians, and in December, a Miami judge had halted the deportation of 92 Somalis.

In June, a judge in Detroit had halted the deportation of more than a hundred Iraqi Christians, and then expanded the ruling to cover a class of as many as 1,400 people.

These federal judges were not deciding immigration cases, over which they have no jurisdiction, but rather giving people time to fight in the immigration courts. They are slowing deportations by insisting that undocumented immigrants still had the right of due process, even if in many of these cases, the immigrants had known for years that they could be expelled. (see Feb 13)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Trump Impeachment

February 8, 2020: the NYT reported that in a tweet President Trump called West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin III a “puppet Democrat Senator” who was “weak & pathetic.” Trump nicknamed him “Joe Munchkin” and suggested that Manchin was too stupid to understand a transcript of Trump’s telephone call with President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, the central piece of evidence in the impeachment case. Trump also took credit for the Manchin’’s signature legislative achievement: a bipartisan bill to secure miners’ pensions. (next TI, see  Mar 2 or see Trump for extended chronology)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Environmental Issues

February 8, 2021:  according to a new report by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany that analyzed emissions and electricity demand in the United States, Europe and India which were some of the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases, the share of energy generated from coal had dropped more sharply during the coronavirus pandemic than that of any other power source, The shift away from coal power had a significant impact on global emissions of planet-warming carbon dioxide, the researchers said, and could lead to an acceleration of the global shift toward renewable energy.

Ottmar Edenhofer, director and chief economist at the Potsdam Institute and an author of the study, said the findings were surprising because natural gas had traditionally had the highest operating costs of all power sources, so gas-fired plants were usually the first to be taken offline when demand for power falls. The sharp decline in gas prices during the pandemic, however, appeared to have changed that calculation, making coal power more expensive than gas power.

And according to a separate study by Ember Climate, an energy research organization based in London, global wind and solar power capacity increased last year despite the pandemic. That, combined with the relatively low operating costs, means that when power demand rebounds, a greater share of the total energy will quite likely come from low-emissions or renewable sources. [NYT article] (next EI, see Apr 22)

February 8 Peace Love Art Activism

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

Say the words “Kent State” to any Boomer and they will associate those words with one thing: the 1970 National Guard killing of four students at the Ohio college.

It is a sad testament to our history that the word Orangeburg does not conjure the same.

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

All Star Bowling Lane

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

On February 6 about 200 students from the predominantly black South Carolina State College had gathered at the nearby All Star Bowling lane to protest its segregation of black patrons. There were no incidents.

On February 7 many of the students returned to resume the protest but this time police arrested fifteen of them.

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

February 8, 1968

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

A third night of protests began and because of the previous night’s arrests, there was increased tension.

This night, the students gathered on the South Carolina State University campus instead of at the bowling alley . They built a bonfire which a law enforcement officer attempted to put out.  In the process he was injured by a piece of a banister thrown from the crowd. A highway patrolman then fired his gun into the air in an attempt to calm the crowd.  Upon hearing the shot, other officers, thinking they were being fired upon, opened fire into the crowd of students.  

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

Smith, Hammond, Middleton

1968 Orangeburg Massacre
Henry Smith…………Samuel Hammond……….Delano Middleton

In what became known as the “Orangeburg Massacre,” the troopers shot wounding twenty-eight and killing three black male students: Samuel Hammond, eighteen, a freshman from Florida; Henry Smith, eighteen, a sophomore from Marion, South Carolina; and Delano Middleton, seventeen, an Orangeburg high school student. Cleveland Sellers, the local Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee’s program director was one of those wounded. He was not a student.

Here is a piece from a documentary about the event:

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

Sellers blamed

South Carolina Robert Governor McNair blamed “black power advocates” such as Sellers for the violence and insisted officers had fired in self-defense while under attack from campus snipers. Witness accounts from reporters, firemen, and students contradicted this story; they reported that officers had fired on the crowd without warning. No evidence was ever presented that the protesters were armed.

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

Officers charged

Cleveland Sellers 1968 Orangeburg Massacre

The State charged nine of the officers in the shootings. A jury found none guilty of any wrongdoing.

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

Cleveland Sellers

Cleveland Sellers [born November 8, 1944] in Denmark, South Carolina.  became interested in civil right with the 1955 murder of Emmett Till. In 1960 at 15, he organized his first sit-in protest at a Denmark, South Carolina lunch counter, just two weeks after the Woolworth’s sit-in in Greensboro, North Carolina.

While a sophomore at Howard University he joined the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee. Sellers graduated from Howard in 1967 and returned to South Carolina.

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre


Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre
Gov McNair

Thus it was Sellers that Governor McNair used as the example of outside agitator, an easy target because of Sellers SNCC association.

A jury found him guilty. He served seven months in prison after a conviction for inciting to riot despite no evidence.

While imprisoned, he wrote his autobiography, The River of No Return, chronicling his involvement with the civil rights movement.

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre


He received a full pardon 25 years after his conviction, but he chose not to have his record expunged, keeping it as a “badge of honor.”

Cleveland Sellers 1968 Orangeburg Massacre

On April 22, 2008, Voorhees College named Dr. Cleveland L. Sellers Jr., as its president. Today he is its president emeritus and continues to be active in civil rights. (Vorhees College article)

Cleveland Sellers Orangeburg Massacre

FBI vs Louie Louie

FBI vs Louie Louie

A sailor walks into a bar…

When The Kingsmen released “Louie Louie” in May 1963, the tune already had a long recorded history.

FBI vs Louie Louie

FBI vs Louie Louie

Rene Touzet

Rene Touzet and his orchestra played  “El Loco Cha Cha” in the early 1950s.

FBI vs Louie Louie

Richard Berry

One night singer Richard Berry heard  Touzet’s song and decided to use some riffs from it to write his own song. His lyrics were about a sailor missing his girl and talking to a guy named Louie. He released the song in 1956.

It sold well in the Rhythm & Blues market, but he eventually sold the rights to the song so he could get married.

FBI vs Louie Louie

Rockin’ Robin Roberts

Rockin’ Robin Roberts, a musician from the US Pacific Northwest, heard the song and decided to add it to his band’s set list. Because of the song’s popularity, many bands began to perform it. Roberts recorded “Louie Louie” in 1961.

FBI vs Louie Louie

Paul Revere and the Raiders

FBI vs Louie Louie

Paul Revere and the Raiders also released the song in 1963. Their version was a hit on the west coast, but…

FBI vs Louie Louie

The Kingsmen

FBI vs Louie Louie

…the Kingsmen’s recording, initially released on the small jerden label, was hit in the Seattle area which led to a release on the somewhat larger wand label.

FBI vs Louie Louie

The song spent 16 weeks [December 1963 – February 1964] on the Billboard Hot 100.

FBI vs Louie Louie

Blue R & B

Society sometimes condemns rock and roll for its sexual innuendos, but double-meaning lyrics were an old story. “Anybody Here Want To Try My Cabbage?”  by Maggie Jones (1924)…

FBI vs Louie Louie

Get ‘em from the Peanut Man” by Lil Johnson (1935)…

…and others like “Good Rockin’ Tonight” by Wynonie Harris (1947), and “Smooth Slow and Easy” by the Drivers (1956) are just four of the dozens of songs that weren’t for polite company during that era.

FBI vs Louie Louie


FBI vs Louie Louie

Some adults thought a song’s lyrics obscene simply because someone said so. Such was the case with “Louie Louie.”  On February 10, 1964 the FBI “received complaint from…Sarasota High School, advising that captioned record is very popular with the high school students, and he has been furnished lyrics for the song, which are very obscene.”  And thus was launched the FBI’s inquiry “Louie Louie.

In May 1965 the FBI concluded with a 119-page inquiry, which had the basic conclusion: “…there are unintelligible words or sounds in their [the Kingsmen] vocal where those who want to apparently find the obscenity [my emphasis], but these were honest vocal effect without thought of intended obscenity and that neither he nor the others in the group can hear the suggested obscenity….

According to Wikipedia, “By some accounts “Louie Louie” is the world’s most recorded rock song with over 1,600 versions.” So much for obscene lyrics.

FBI vs Louie Louie
…and the sailor says to the bartender, Louie…

Louie Louie, oh no

Sayin’ we gotta go, yeah yeah, yeah yeah

Said Louie Louie, oh baby

Said we gotta go

A fine little girl, she waits for me

Catch a ship across the sea

Sail that ship about, all alone

Never know if I make it home


Three nights and days I sail the sea

Think of girl, all constantly

On that ship I dream she’s there

I smell the rose in her hair


Okay, let’s give it to ’em, right now!

See, see Jamaica, the moon above

It won’t be long, me see me love

Take her in my arms again

I’ll tell her I’ll never leave again


I said we gotta go now

Let’s take this on outta here

Let’s go!

FBI vs Louie Louie

A few…

So here’s THE version by the Kingsmen and some other versions plus a Bruce cover!

Paul Revere and the Raiders

The Kingsmen

Louie Louie by  Bruce Springsteen:

FBI vs Louie Louie