Electric Chair

Lead: Caught up in the frenzy of competition in the early days of electric power, Thomas Edison gave impetus to development of the twentieth century’s most fearsome form of judicial execution, the electric chair.

Intro. : A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In the 1880s, inventor Thomas Edison and industrialist George Westinghouse were locked in a fierce competition over the future of electric power. The issue was transmission. Edison championed direct current, Westinghouse, in alliance with the brilliant and erratic Nikola Tesla, was an advocate of alternating current. Westinghouse eventually prevailed because AC, with its more efficient distribution over longer distances, was clearly the superior choice.

Coretta Scott King II

Lead: In the years before and after the assassination of her husband, Coretta Scott King provided strong leadership within the civil rights movement.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: It was not easy residing at the center of the maelstrom, raising a large family, taking a supportive role at the side of one of humanity’s most consequential figures, but, nevertheless, Coretta King rose to take the role of leader. She escaped and stood strong when white supremacists directed violence against their family. When Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was awarded the Nobel Peace prize, she was by his side.

Coretta Scott King I

Lead: In the pantheon of the civil rights movement Martin Luther King, Jr., and his wife, Coretta Scott King, shine most brightly.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: As the issue of African-American Civil rights forced itself onto the American national agenda, it is not surprising that the prosperous, educated, black upper-class should feel most acutely the second-class status which America’s white majority enforced so vigorously to keep them in their place.

House Divided: Collapse of the Confederacy V

NOTE TO SUBSCRIBERS: THE FIRST THREE IN THIS SERIES ARE IN THE ARCHIVES

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: With the prospects of Confederate defeat around Petersburg increasing with each passing day, in spring 1865 Robert E Lee planned for a last campaign. He would give up the Capital at Richmond, extract his army, march south, connect with Joseph Johnston in North Carolina, defeat William Sherman, and with the last remaining serious Confederate army, deal Grant such a resounding blow that the North would be forced to seriously treat for peace. It was a daring plan and, of course, it failed.

House Divided: Collapse of the Confederacy IV

NOTE TO SUBSCRIBERS: THE FIRST THREE IN THIS SERIES MAY BE FOUND IN THE ARCHIVES

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Robert E. Lee had known it would come to this. He told Jubal Early that a siege was disastrous and would doom his army to defeat. His lines were paper-thin around Petersburg and every day Yankee strength proved increasingly irresistible. Yet in the weeks of early spring 1865, he dreamed of a breakout, of joining Joseph Johnston in North Carolina and of a last campaign, first against Sherman, and then against Grant, whom he hoped he could give the slip.

House Divided: Collapse of the Confederacy III

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In the end it was a matter of choice. Either it would be independence or freedom for the slaves. The rehearsed arguments across the South echoed the bitter national debates of the 1850s. Slavery was morally beneficial for both master and slave. Senator Hunter said, “what did we go to war for, if not to protect our property?” Howell Cobb of Georgia fumed, “if slaves will make good soldiers our whole theory of slavery is wrong. The day you make soldiers of them is the beginning of the end of the revolution.”

Read more →

House Divided: Collapse of the Confederacy II

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: With the prospect of their dream of independence teetering on the brink of disaster, in the winter of 1865 Confederate leaders began to consider a solution to their military manpower problem that would have been unthinkable just four years before. They debated and then passed a bill offering freedom to African Americans who would fight in the rebel ranks.

Read more →

House Divided: Collapse of the Confederacy I

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: As the terrible, cold, wet winter of 1865 slowly blended into spring, the dreams of Southern independence flickered and then died. What began with such great hopes just four years before, sustained by enormous white sacrifice, enduring in the face of almost irresistible opposition and odds, teetered on the precipice of historical reality. The South had sought to arrest or at least block the revolutionary changes, in population, industrialization, urban life and in shifting attitudes toward a more powerful Federal engagement in the lives of citizens that, in Southerners’ views, had infected other regions. The southland’s preference for aristocratic social structure, family, religion, rural life and, most of all, the institution of slavery, were under assault. To save its society and particularly its peculiar tradition of human bondage, the South would break the sacred bonds of Union and strike out on its own.

Read more →