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1790 Augustus Baldwin Longstreet, a man who would have many professions, was born in Augusta, Georgia. He attended Yale and a law school in Connecticut before returning to Georgia where he began the practice of law in 1815. In 1817, he moved to Greensboro, where four years later he was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives. In 1822, Longstreet was named superior court judge, serving three years until he returned to Augusta to resume the practice of law.
In the early 1830s, he began writing and penned his most famous work--Georgia Scenes, a humorous series which told of life in the late 1700s. Between 1834 and 1836, Longstreet published the Augusta States Rights Sentinel. Then, in 1838, he became a Methodist minister. The next year he became president of Emory College, a post he held for nine years. Next, he briefly was president of a Louisiana college before becoming president of the University of Mississippi (1849-56). In 1858, Longstreet became president of the University of South Carolina. During the Civil War, he served as chaplain of a Georgia militia unit. After the war, he returned to Oxford, Mississippi, where he died July 9, 1870.
1863 Atlanta received 163 Union prisoners captured two days earlier at the Battle of Chickamauga. These were the first Federal prisoners in the Civil War to be sent to Atlanta.
For more, see This Week in Georgia Civil War History.
1877 President Rutherford B. Hayes arrived in Atlanta on a good-will trip in an attempt to mend North-South relations after Reconstruction. Hayes became the second sitting president to visit Atlanta (the first being Millard Fillmore, who came in 1854).
1906 On this Saturday night, a group of white Atlanta youths and men decided to go searching for blacks to beat up after hearing reports that blacks had attempted four assaults of white women at their homes. The group quickly turned into a mob, and soon all blacks were fair game.
The Atlanta Race Riot would continue Sunday and Monday. Before it ended, official reports reflect 25 blacks and 1 white were killed and many more wounded--though the actual casualty list was probably much higher.
1909 Artist Lamar Dodd was born in Fairburn, Georgia. Dodd went on to become a major southern and Georgian artist at the University of Georgia, where he became director of the Art School, which after his death in 1996 was named for him.
1918 To conserve fuel for use in America's participation in World War I, Atlanta's city gasoline administrator prohibited driving on Sundays--except for emergency vehicles. There were no civil or criminal penalties, but police were to report the names of anyone breaking the order to the newspapers for public ridicule.
1932 The Great Depression affected more Americans than any other economic crisis in the nation's history, leaving millions of workers without jobs.
In a tragedy showing the extreme personal effects of the Depression, Atlanta iron worker J. Walter Meeks shot his wife and then turned the gun on himself. Meeks was despondent over his inability to find work, while his wife eked out a living for the family as a night waitress. She had just returned home from working all night and sent their ten-year old son off to school when the shootings occurred.
1996 An 8-2 victory over the Montreal Expos gave the Atlanta Braves their fifth consecutive division title – the first National League team to accomplish this feat. In fact, only two other teams in the Major Leagues – the New York Yankees and the Oakland A's – have won five division titles in a row.
The win also meant that Braves manager Bobby Cox now joined Casey Stengel as the only two managers in Major League history to have singularly led a team to five consecutive division titles. The game was also significant to pitching ace John Smoltz, who won his 23rd game (tying an Atlanta record for season wins), struck out 10 (setting an Atlanta record for strikeouts in a season), and hit a 3-run home run. Smoltz's impressive performance helped him subsequently win the Cy Young Award for the 1996 season.
2009 Flooding from a series of storms which passed through west and north Georgia for the previous week, dropping over ten inches of rain (significantly more in some areas) over much of the state, continued on this day. Many roads were washed out, school systems were closed, and the death toll had reached nine.
In Their Own Words on This Day. . .
1739 Returning from his important visit to Coweta to renew English friendship and alliances with the Creek Nation, James Oglethorpe visited the Salzburgers at Ebenezer, as Johann Martin Boltzius recorded in his journal:
Source: George Fenwick Jones and Renate Wilson (ed. and trans.), Detailed Reports on the Salzburger Emigrants Who Settled in America . . . Edited by Samuel Urlsperger (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1981), Vol. 6, pp. 220-221.
1863 From Chickamauga, Joseph Cumming wrote to his wife about the costly Confederate victory in the Sept. 19-20 battle in north Georgia:
Source: Mills Lane (ed.), "Dear Mother: Don't grieve about me. If I get killed, I'll only be dead.": Letters from Georgia Soldiers in the Civil War (Savannah: Beehive Press, 1990), P. 272.
1864 In several ways, Gertrude Thomas's journal entry for this day proved to be prophetic:
Source: Virginia Ingraham Burr (ed.), The Secret Eye: The Journal of Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas, 1848-1889 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1990), pp. 236-237.
1881 While recuperating from ill health in Wilmington, N.C., Woodrow Wilson wrote a letter to Charles Talcott indicating his reasons for deciding to practice law in Atlanta:
Source: Franklin M. Garrett, Atlanta and Environs: A Chronicle of its People and Events (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1969 reprint of 1954 volume), Vol. II, pp. 46-47.
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