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1737 After a 70-day voyage from Georgia, James Oglethorpe landed at Ilfracombe, a Bristol Channel port on the northern coast of Devon.
From here, Georgia's founder proceeded by land to his townhouse in London. Oglethorpe had been summoned by the Trustees to answer questions about the financial state of Georgia and problems with South Carolina over the Indian trade. More importantly, he had come to lobby for British funding of the defense of Georgia from Spanish forces to the south. Oglethorpe's 1737 visit to England would prove successful, earning Georgia both an appropriation from Parliament and a British regiment under his command.
1788 Delegates attending a special convention in Augusta (then Georgia's capital) voted unanimously to ratify the new U.S. Constitution approved on Sept. 17, 1787 in Philadelphia. This action made Georgia the fourth state to ratify the Constitution.
1865 From Savannah, General William T. Sherman wrote a letter to Ulysses Grant indicating his plan to send the 17th Corps to Port Royal. He also included a copy of his plans for invading South Carolina -- providing he could be supplied with grain and other stores. According to those plans, Gen. Foster and his troops would be left behind to continue the occupation of Savannah. [Click here to read letter and plans]
1892 Former Union Army Quartermaster General Montgomery C. Meigs died in Washington, D.C. Born May 3, 1816 in Augusta, Ga., he graduated from West Point in 1836 and was assigned to engineering duty. When the Civil War broke out, Meigs was appointed colonel of the 11th U.S. Infantry, and in May 1861 was promoted to brigadier general. During the remainder of the war, Meigs served as Union Army Quartermaster General. He retired from the U.S. Army in 1882.
1904 Opera tenor, recording artist, and actor James Melton was born in Moultrie, Ga. He would die April 21, 1961 in New York City.
1904 Former Confederate general James Longstreet died in Gainesville, Ga. He was buried in the city's Alta Vista Cemetery.
For extensive biographical information on him, see the Longstreet Chronicles web site.
1916 Politician and U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Joseph R. Lamar died in Washington, D.C. Born October 14, 1857 in Ruckersville, Ga., Lamar received an undergraduate degree from Bethany College and subsequently studied law at Washington and Lee University. He was admitted to the bar in 1878 and practiced law in Augusta from 1880 until 1903. Lamar also served in the Georgia General Assembly (1886-89) and in 1895 was named to codify the statutory laws of Georgia. In 1901, he was appointed to fill a vacancy on the Georgia Supreme Court, though he had to resign after four years for health reasons. In 1910, Pres. William Howard Taft appointed Lamar to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. He held that office until his death in 1916.
1960 Arkansas beat Georgia Tech 14-7 in the Gator Bowl.
1965 Martin Luther King Jr. announced the launching of Project Alabama, a campaign of mass marches in Selma in an effort to push the federal government to enact federal legislation to protect black voting rights.
1967 Florida beat Georgia Tech 27-12 in the Orange Bowl.
1970 Benjamin Mays was selected president of the board of education for the Atlanta City School System.
1977 Major League Baseball
commissioner Bowie Kuhn suspended Atlanta Braves owner Ted Turner for one
year for charges of tampering in the signing of Gary Matthews (although
the Braves were allowed to keep the outfielder).
1984 Georgia beat Texas 10-9 in the Cotton Bowl.
2011 At the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, the Atlanta Falcons defeated the Carolina Panthers to win the National Football Conference South Division championship, and in the process clinched home field advantage for all NFC playoff games - finishing the regular season with a conference-best record of 13-3.
In Their Own Words on This Day. . .
1865 The 26th Wisconsin Infantry had been with General William T. Sherman through the Atlanta Campaign and subsequent March to the Sea. Today, members of the 26th finally left Savannah as Sherman's march continued into South Carolina, as recorded in the diary of the unit's adjutant, George Jones:
1868 Atlanta teacher Elizabeth Sterchi wrote to Bishop George F. Bahnson in North Carolina with about the constitutional convention then underway in Atlanta. Of the 169 convention delegates, 112 were identified as "Scalawags" (white southerners sympathetic with Reconstruction). Of the remaining delegates, 36 were black, 9 were white "Carpetbaggers" (northerners -- usually Republicans -- who had come south to benefit from Reconstruction), and 12 were Georgia Democrats -- a mixture that upset Sterchi:
Source: Franklin M. Garrett, Atlanta and Environs: A Chronicle of its People and Events (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1969 reprint of original 1954 volume), Vol. I, p. 772.
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