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The Wounded Knee Massacre

Men, women and little children are going to die today who shouldn't have died and US soldiers will die mostly in "friendly fire" incidents and receive medals that they should have returned. Different people tell different stories about what happened, so if you have heard a different story, then it is different. Here is one account. The Ghost Dance Movement is popular amongst the Indians. It is based on Christian ideals of faith in God, honesty, good works, and hope for Heaven. It also predicts the return of Jesus very soon. The Ghost Dance itself is a circle dance familiar to all Indians. However, warriors now wear Ghost Dancer shirts in the belief that they will block bullets. The new regional commander of US forces thinks that the Ghost Dance stands in the way of Indian assimilation into civilized society. The general policy of the US government is to turn the Indians into farmers whether they like it or not. The warriors don't like it, so... in the process of rounding up resisters, the Lakota Indians are funneled toward Wounded Knee Creek. Exactly what happened next is unclear, but either a deaf Indian didn't understand that he was supposed to disarm, or someone tripped over his own feet, but a shot rings out. Then more shots are fired. US reinforcements show up and chaos reigns. There is no plan. Just shoot men, shoot women, shoot babies. Shoot anything that moves including your own men. There is a word for this type of fighting. Actually, I can think of several words, but children under 40 might be listening. There is a body count.... minimums. At least 18 little children dead. 44 women. The rest is a mix of boys and men. Maybe 300 in total for both sides. The regional commander, General Miles rips into the Colonel James Forsyth and immediately relives him of command. In the end, the Indians will bury their dead at Wounded Knee. Colonel Forsyth will be promoted to Major General and 20 (count them) 20 Medals of Honor will be awarded for conspicuous bravery, and distinguished gallantry while gunning down little children. I don't know what to say. Most Americans at the time were OK with the massacre. I think I'm going to throw up. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]

Perhaps it was the following morning when the saying went out:
"Those who were wounded at Wounded Knee have been brought here, and they are lying right now in the church, filling it up,"
so my mother and I hurried to the church.
People kept going there to look on, but as for me, I only went that once; I didn't like them, so I didn't go again. Smelling of blood, looking so dirty, they were spoiling our church; they were yelling so hard now, when really it was their own fault for being intractable.
--A mixed-blood woman and informant named Emmy Valandry.[6]

Chicago Wins the World's Fair

The World's Fair in Paris was marked by the construction of the Eiffel Tower last year. To many artists the tower is a wrought iron atrocity, but to the people of Chicago, it represents a challenge. Competition for the 1893 World's Fair has been fierce. New York is the natural choice and it is backed by New York financiers, but Chicago wants it bad. Chicago is the largest city in the United States, although they won't know it until the Hollerith tabulating machines process the US census. Chicago has built its first steel-framed skyscraper... the tallest in the United States... ten stories tall! (I get dizzy just thinking about it.) Yet the city is considered unsophisticated by New York standards, and perhaps it is. Yet when the voting comes in, Chicago wins! The citizens are ecstatic, but the organizers are worried. They have NO EARTHLY IDEA how they will make it happen. It is supposed to be a celebration of the 400th anniversary of the discovery of the New World by Columbus. (One year off. Close enough.) At its center will be the world's first Ferris Wheel. They will also introduce the belly dancer to America, moving pictures, and Krupps' artillery exposition featuring "The Thunderer" which can hurl a projectile 15 miles. They call it a peacemaker. The buildings will be stuccoed and painted white. With electric lights keeping it lit at night the buildings will gleam, so they will call it "The White City". [7] [8] [9] [10] [11]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
OK. That all sounds very happy, but by July they still hadn't picked out the exact site. (They finally selected Jackson Park.) It was a miracle they got it built at all, and they made an impact. I have mentioned before that a serial killer was preying on young women who came to Chicago. As early as 1890 the Chicago Tribune was printing a warning to women that REAL classified ads for stenographers DO NOT include phrases like "must be blonde" or "please transmit a photograph". I'm drawing most of my information on the serial killer from Erik Larson's book "The Devil in the White City," but if you like romance mixed with time travel, check out the novel "Timebound" by Rysa Walker. A teenage girl must go back in time to the Chicago World's Fair to prevent a murder and fix the time line. As one might guess, she runs into the Chicago killer, Dr. H. H. Holmes, who had already murdered around 200 women and burned their bodies into ash in his basement. [12] [13]

The Sherman Anti-Trust Act

This law should be named "The Sherman Lack-of-Trust Act", but you can usually trust businessmen to look after their own best interests. Specifically, US Senator John Sherman of Ohio has been worried that Standard Oil is killing competition and circumventing state law. Ohio state law prohibits corporations from owning stock in other corporations, so Standard Oil set up an umbrella organization that holds several corporations in trust. In other words, the Standard Oil Trust manages multiple corporations... sort of like a real estate management service that keeps an eye on your apartments, collects rents, mows the lawns and calls a plumber when needed. But the Standard Oil Trust is seen as a legal dodge. They have been lowering prices to the consumer, and killing competition. (Are they really? Who knows?) The Sherman Anti-trust Act makes monopolies, and conspiracies between corporations illegal. Senator Sherman assures the public that the Act, "...applies old and well recognised principles of common law." Of course, one wonders why one needs a new law if it is simply a restatement of old laws. In two years Ohio will break up the Standard Oil Trust and Standard Oil will become a holding company based in New Jersey. 21 years from now it will finally be broken up into multiple companies. That will be a long wait. [14]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
This is a tricky subject. If I open a business and offer a product that is better and costs less than my competitors, am I bad? Should the government do something? In the 1980s the Japanese were accused of dumping below-cost computer memory onto the American market. Certainly the memory chips cost less than what American companies could produce them for. America was once home to several major electronics firms, but a slump in the market caused American companies to put their efforts into more complex semiconductor chips with a larger profit margin. When the memory market became profitable again, Japan and Korea were well positioned to take advantage, but the American companies needed to retool to become competitive. This is an old story. Large, well-established companies don't want to retool, so they demand that government do something. President Reagan imposed an 100% tariff on the Japanese televisions, computers, and other items in retaliation. It was a bold stroke that came too late. So what should have happened? Nothing. No help. My sense is that American companies were expecting the US government to protect them from foreign competition. Because of that expectation, they got lazy, killed their own innovation and locked themselves out of their own market. Passing yet another law won't protect a business from the big bad guys. All a law can do is to punish them after the fact... long after you are out of business. [15] [16] [17]

Notable Births

  • Anthony Fokker: He will design the Red Baron's Fokker Triplane in World War 1. (Those Fokkers were amazing.) [18] [19] [20]
  • Ho Chi Min: He will become the 1st President of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam and a major thorn in the side of the USA during the Vietnam War. [18]
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower: He will become the Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe during World War 2 and a very effective (if somewhat quiet) President of the United States. [18] [21]

In Other News

  • William James publishes "The Principles of Psychology". He is considered the first American psychologist. He prefers an introspective approach instead of the behavioral conditioning of his day. [18] [22]
  • Rubber gloves are used for the first time in surgery. Dr. Halsted of John Hopkins Hospital wants to avoid dermatitis. In other words... the gloves are there to protect HIM! [18] [23]
  • West Point hosts the first Army-Navy football game. Navy wins, 24–0, but Army will make a comeback next year, 32–16. [24]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1890, Wikipedia.

See Also


  1. Wounded Knee Massacre - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 August 2016. “On the morning of December 29, the troops went into the camp to disarm the Lakota. One version of events claims that during the process of disarming the Lakota, a deaf tribesman named Black Coyote was reluctant to give up his rifle, claiming he had paid a lot for it. A scuffle over the rifle escalated, and a shot was fired which resulted in the 7th Cavalry opening fire indiscriminately from all sides, killing men, women, and children, as well as some of their fellow soldiers. The Lakota warriors who still had weapons began shooting back at the attacking soldiers, who quickly suppressed the Lakota fire. The surviving Lakota fled, but cavalrymen pursued and killed many who were unarmed. By the time it was over, more than 150 men, women, and children of the Lakota had been killed and 51 were wounded (4 men and 47 women and children, some of whom died later); some estimates placed the number of dead at 300. Twenty-five soldiers also died, and 39 were wounded (6 of the wounded later died). At least twenty soldiers were awarded the Medal of Honor.”
  2. Brown, Dee Alexander. Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. Bantam Books. ISBN 9781453275139. 
  3. Dawes Act - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “The Dawes Act of 1887 (also known as the General Allotment Act or the Dawes Severalty Act of 1887),[1][2] adopted by Congress in 1887, authorized the President of the United States to survey American Indian tribal land and divide it into allotments for individual Indians. Those who accepted allotments and lived separately from the tribe would be granted United States citizenship.”
  4. Ghost Dance - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “Following the Wounded Knee Massacre, interest and participation in the Ghost Dance movement dropped dramatically for fear of continued violence against practitioners of the religion.”
  5. Wounded Knee Massacre - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “In all, 84 men, 44 women, and 18 children reportedly died on the field, while at least seven Lakota were mortally wounded.[2] Miles denounced Forsyth and relieved him of command. An exhaustive Army Court of Inquiry convened by Miles criticized Forsyth for his tactical dispositions but otherwise exonerated him of responsibility. The Court of Inquiry, however, was not conducted as a formal court-martial. The secretary of war concurred with the decision and reinstated Forsyth to command of the 7th Cavalry. Testimony had indicated that for the most part, troops attempted to avoid non-combatant casualties. Miles continued to criticize Forsyth, whom he believed had deliberately disobeyed his commands in order to destroy the Indians.”
  6. Rice, Julian (Winter - Spring, 1998). ""It Was Their Own Fault for Being Intractable": Internalized Racism and Wounded Knee". American Indian Quarterly (University of Nebraska Press) 22 (1-2): 63-82. http://www.jstor.org/stable/1185108. Retrieved 23 October 2016. 
  7. Larson, Erik. Devil in the White City: A Saga of Magic and Murder at the Fair That Changed America, The. Crown Publishers. ISBN 9780609608449. 
  8. Eiffel Tower - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 30 October 2016. “Constructed from 1887-89 as the entrance to the 1889 World's Fair, it was initially criticized by some of France's leading artists and intellectuals for its design, but it has become a global cultural icon of France and one of the most recognisable structures in the world.”
  9. Auditorium Building (Chicago) - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 30 October 2016. “The entrance to the auditorium is on the south side beneath the tall blocky eighteen-story tower. The rest of the building is a uniform ten stories, organized in the same way as Richardson's Marshall Field Wholesale Store.”
  10. Skyscraper - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 30 October 2016. “The term 'skyscraper' was first applied to buildings of steel framed construction of at least 10 stories in the late 19th century, a result of public amazement at the tall buildings being built in major cities like Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia, Detroit, and St. Louis. The first steel-frame skyscraper was the Home Insurance Building (originally 10 stories with a height of 42 m or 138 ft) in Chicago, Illinois in 1885.”
  11. Ferris Wheel - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 30 October 2016. “The original Ferris Wheel, sometimes also referred to as the Chicago Wheel, was the centerpiece of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago, Illinois.”
  12. Burnham and Root - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 30 October 2016. “Burnham and Root was one of Chicago's most famous architectural companies of the nineteenth century.”
  13. Timebound (The Chronos Files Book 1) : Kindle Store. Amazon.com (2016). Retrieved on 30 October 2016. “2013 Winner — Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award — Grand Prize and Young Adult Fiction Winner When Kate Pierce-Keller's grandmother gives her a strange blue medallion and speaks of time travel, sixteen-year-old Kate assumes the old woman is delusional. But it all becomes horrifyingly real when a murder in the past destroys the foundation of Kate's present-day life. Suddenly, that medallion is the only thing protecting Kate from blinking out of existence. Kate learns that the 1893 killing is part of something much more sinister, and her genetic ability to time travel makes Kate the only one who can fix the future. Risking everything, she travels back in time to the Chicago World's Fair to try to prevent the murder and the chain of events that follows. Changing the timeline comes with a personal cost—if Kate succeeds, the boy she loves will have no memory of her existence. And regardless of her motives, does Kate have the right to manipulate the fate of the entire world? Timebound was originally released as Time’s Twisted Arrow.”
  14. Competition law - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 31 October 2016. “It was named after Senator John Sherman who argued that the Act 'does not announce a new principle of law, but applies old and well recognised principles of common law.'”
  15. Sherman Antitrust Act (1890) text. linfo.org (2016). Retrieved on 31 October 2016.
  16. Johnson, Bryan T. (January 24, 1991). The U.S.-Japan Semiconductor Agreement: Keeping Up the ManagedTrade Agenda. Heritage.org. Retrieved on 31 October 2016. “In 1957, General Electric Company, Raytheon Company, RCA Corporation, Sylvania Company, and Westinghouse Electric Corporation were America's largest producers of semiconductors, which at that time consisted mainly of transistors. These firms produced transistors for their own consumer products such as radios and televisions as well as for sale to other firms. By the 1960s, many small American companies broke into the semiconductor market, led by Intel Corporation and Fairchild Corporation. Soon these companies took the semiconductor business away from the consumer electronics giants. The new firms produced only semiconductors, which they sold to companies to be incorporated into other products.”
  17. 100% Tariff Put on Some Japan Goods : Reagan Move to Halt Chip Dumping Could Double TV, Computer Prices. articles.latimes.com (April 18, 1987). Retrieved on 31 October 2016. “President Reagan on Friday imposed tariffs of 100% on medium-sized Japanese color televisions, powerful lap-top and desk computers and certain hand power tools, to retaliate for Japan's failure to allow more American products into its markets and to halt the underpriced 'dumping' of Japanese semiconductor computer chips in other nations.”
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 18.4 Grun, Bernard. The Timetables of History: A Horizontal Linkage of People and Events. Simon and Schuster, 446-447. 
  19. Manfred von Richthofen - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “Manfred Albrecht Freiherr von Richthofen (2 May 1892 – 21 April 1918), also widely known as the Red Baron, was a German fighter pilot with the Imperial German Army Air Service (Luftstreitkräfte) during the First World War. He is considered the ace-of-aces of the war, being officially credited with 80 air combat victories.”
  20. Fokker Dr.I - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “The Fokker Dr.I (Dreidecker, 'triplane' in German) was a World War I fighter aircraft built by Fokker-Flugzeugwerke. The Dr.I saw widespread service in the spring of 1918. It became famous as the aircraft in which Manfred von Richthofen gained his last 19 victories, and in which he was killed on 21 April 1918.”
  21. Dwight D. Eisenhower - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “Dwight David 'Ike' Eisenhower (October 14, 1890 – March 28, 1969) was an American politician and general who served as the 34th President of the United States from 1953 until 1961. He was a five-star general in the United States Army during World War II and served as Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe.”
  22. William James - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “He gained widespread recognition with his monumental The Principles of Psychology (1890), totaling twelve hundred pages in two volumes, which took twelve years to complete. Psychology: The Briefer Course, was an 1892 abridgement designed as a less rigorous introduction to the field. These works criticized both the English associationist school and the Hegelianism of his day as competing dogmatisms of little explanatory value, and sought to re-conceive the human mind as inherently purposive and selective.”
  23. William Stewart Halsted - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 23 October 2016. “Halsted, William S. (1890–1891). 'The treatment of wounds with especial reference to the value of the blood clot in the management of dead spaces'. The Johns Hopkins Hospital Reports. 2: 255–314. First mention of rubber gloves in the operating room.”
  24. Army–Navy Game - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 30 October 2016. “Army and Navy first met on the football field on November 29, 1890.”

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