Friday, August 30, 2013

100 Years Ago Today

Here we are at the end of August and 100 years ago...

Nothing of any great importance was going on.

In Congress Democrats were calling for higher taxes on the wealthy. They were insisting on a tax bracket of five (5) percent for the very wealthy under the new income tax code made possible by the recent ratification of the 16th Amendment. In Great Britain a pack of wannabe women voters attacked Prime Minister H.H. Asquith and physically dragged him over a stretch of golf course until he was rescued. Meanwhile the United States is rattling sabres with foreign countries. President Wilson is threatening Mexico and a fleet of nine battleships has been dispatched to cruise off their coast. (Some things don't seem to have changed much.)

In sports news The Boston Red Sox beat the Washington Senators in eleven innings 1-0. Washington's ace pitcher, Walter "the big train" Johnson, shut down the Sox for the first ten innings but finally gave up the winning run in the eleventh. In other sporting news The Brooklyn Dodgers beat the Boston Braves and the New York Giants fell before the Phillies. Also it is reported that an agreement has been reached establishing the rules for the official America's Cup Sailing  competition, with the first race set for 1914.

For those seeking to escape the brutal heat of New York in August (in a world without AC) the Pennsylvania Railroad is advertising a $2.50 round trip excursion ticket to Atlantic City and it's cool beaches. Excursion boats are also advertising. For those seeking a longer term escape numerous ocean and lake front hotels and resorts are advertised (most made of wood and highly combustible). If travel is in your plans you can find the railroad schedules and also the sailing schedules for all of the ocean liners sailing to distant ports. The German liner SS Imperator plans to sail tomorrow morning despite damage from a recent fire. And for those in a rush to Europe, the Lusitania is sailing on September 3rd (less than six days to cross the Atlantic!).

In business news stocks were higher on active trading both in the New York and the Curbside Exchanges. And it was reported that over the first three months of the year only 158 people died and a further 3628 persons were injured in train related accidents. This is universally seen as a sign of progress in railroad safety.

In other words nothing of great importance was going on at the end of August 100 years ago. It will be six years before I will be able to write those words again.

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