When the President Fought White Supremacists

No, this isn’t a story about the current president. It’s about Teddy Roosevelt, the late president who on this date in 1903 shuttered the post office in Indianola, Mississippi, a punishment for locals’ racist intimidation of Minnie M. Cox, a black woman who was also the town’s postmaster.

Though Mrs. Cox had already held the role for well over a decade— President Benjamin Harrison appointed her in 1891, making Cox the nation’s first black female postmaster, and McKinley invited her back in 1897 — the combination of blackness, womanhood and power apparently become too much for self-conscious white chauvinists at the turn of the century. Egged on my white supremacist newspaper editor James K. Vardaman, local haters started protesting Cox at the end of 1902.

Finally, after weeks of awful invective and constant threats, including  the mayor and sheriff telling her they wouldn’t protect her from lynching, Cox involuntarily resigned her position.

Roosevelt was having none of it.

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Found in the L.O.C.: 5 X-Rays

 

I’m sure you’ve got this marked on your calendar, but just in case, today is the 122nd anniversary of German scientist Wilhelm Röntgen’s October 8, 1895, discovery of X-Rays. Yippee!

In honor of Röntgen life-altering, Nobel Prize-winning findings — a fluke that changed medicine forever: now doctors could see into the human body without all that messy slicing and dicing. – here are five early X-Ray-produced images found over at the L.O.C., the Library of Congress.

Image one, above, was taken in 1896 and comes with the caption, “Ein neues Licht legwet die Welt,” which translates to “a new light sets the world.”

See the rest after the jump.

And for more “Found in the L.O.C.,” click here!

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