The Great London Fire I

Lead: During four days in the late summer of 1666 the medieval city of London was largely destroyed by fire.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: Already reeling from another of the periodic outbreaks of the Black Death, the bubonic plague, the City of London in the summer of 1666 was weak and crowded and dirty. With a population of a half a million, London was the richest and most important city in the western world, but for most living there was no picnic.

 

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Suppression of Galileo II

Lead: Condemned in 1632, the Italian scientist was not given reprieve until 1993.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: Galileo, the Italian mathematician and astronomer, believed along with the Polish scholar Copernicus' that the earth revolved around the sun. The Roman Catholic Church disagreed. It taught that the earth was the center of the universe and in 1616 told Galileo to cease and disist his teachings on the subject. In 1624 there was a new pope, he was a long time friend and protector of Galileo and the scientist thought that perhaps a personal appeal would bring him some relief. He felt that it was dangerous for the church to champion a position so vulnerable to scientific evidence, that if people found themselves convinced by proof of something that it was made a sin to believe, they would reject the church's teachings in other areas and perhaps even attracted to the new Protestant ideas coming from Martin Luther in northern Germany.

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Henry’s Wives: Katherine Howard

Lead: Of the wives of Henry VIII, the teenaged Katherine Howard was the least prepared for the task. She paid for it with her head.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: Most probably Katherine Howard did not come to Henry's bed as a virgin. The king was then nearly fifty, freshly divorced from the disappointing Anne of Cleaves, extremely fat, with ulcerated legs, in short no great catch. But he was the King of England and when in the spring of 1640 he noticed Katherine, one of Anne's former ladies-in-waiting, he was enchanted. She was everything the German Queen was not and he fell head over heels in love. His first two wives had been set aside because they did not give him a male heir. When that was accomplished by Jane Seymour just before her death, Henry's dynastic needs were not as severe He could return to diplomatic concerns in the search for a Queen. He needed an ally in Lutheran Germany as a counterweight to Catholic Spain and France and chose Anne, sister of the Duke of the German Duchy of Cleaves. They never quite got along and six months later Henry was ready to move on and ripe for the romantic and exciting young Katherine Howard.

 

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Maine: Birthplace of Legislative Prohibition

Lead: Carved out of Massachusetts and born of controversy the State of Maine early on exhibited a streak of moralistic reform. It was the first state to experiment with Prohibition.

Intro.: This is "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: Neal Dow was a man with a purpose. He was convinced that spirituous liquors were at the heart of violence and poverty in his state. Maine's two leading industries, logging and fishing, kept men away from the restraining influences of home and exposed them to temptation. The result was a population given to drink and neglecting their families and work.

 

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Aborted 13th Amendment II

Lead: With seven states having already bolted from the Union, Congress in the winter of 1861 was desperate to save what was left.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: The repudiated James Buchanan was in the White House. Two blocks away in the Willard Hotel a minority President-elect, Abraham Lincoln was reluctant to do much of anything until his inauguration. In the resulting power vacuum, the moderate leaders of Congress were trying to figure out a way to soothe the fears of the slave-holding South and prevent additional states from pulling out. In the Senate the search for compromise was led by John J. Crittenden of Kentucky. His solution protected the property rights of slaveholders throughout the nation and placed into the Constitution the notion of popular sovereignty or squatter whereby states would be admitted without condition, leaving each to decide about slavery on their own. When this seemed to go nowhere he suggested the revival of the Missouri Compromise of 1820 which permitted slavery only in new states south of Missouri's southern border. His proposals failed.

 

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Assassination of Huey Pierce Long

Lead: On September 8, 1935, Huey Pierce Long, United States Senator from Louisiana was assassinated in the State Capital building in Baton Rouge.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: Carl Austin Weiss, in the mid-1930s, was one of best ear, nose, and throat physicians in Louisiana. He was a graduate of LSU and Tulane University medical school and shared a prosperous New Orleans practice with his father. Weiss was not a political animal and though he occasionally expressed disgust at the political circus being played out in the state at the time his main concern was his profession and his family. Yet, in the fall of 1935 he killed the most powerful politician Louisiana had yet produced and one of the most colorful in American history.

 

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Gandhi in South Africa II

Lead: Mahatma Gandhi first built his reputation as it led the movement to secure rights for Indian workers in sugar plantations in early twentieth century South Africa.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The cash crop of Natal province on the eastern coast of South Africa was sugar cane. Native Africans resisted working on the plantations and therefore thousands of emigrant workers were brought from India. Some went home after their contract expired, others stayed. In the 1880s torn between their need for Indian labor and fear of the growth of the Indian population, white South Africans of both Dutch and English heritage began to restrict Indian rights, this despite the stated British policy which accorded legal equality to all subjects of the Empire regardless of race or place of origin.

 

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Gandhi in South Africa I

Lead: In his campaign for Indian freedom in the 1940s, Mahatma Gandhi used skills and tactics he sharpened in a fight for justice in turn of the twentieth century South Africa.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Most people have an image of Gandhi as a shriveled figure dressed in traditional clothes whose use of non-violence helped drive the British from the Indian sub-continent. Few remember that he spent over twenty years as a lawyer in South Africa deeply involved in alleviating abuses direct toward the Indian emigrant community.

 

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