March 5, 2015

It Happened on March 5th

One of the most famous photographs in history was taken on March 5, 1960.

The Boston Massacre, 1700
The Boston Massacre was one of the most significant events that led to the American Revolution. On this day, British soldiers fired directly into a crowd of civilians, killing five and injuring 11 more. In the resulting trial, John Adams represented the British soldiers so that they could receive a fair trial. 

This depiction was engraved by Paul Revere.
The British were in town because Boston had become a center of rebellion following the Townsend Acts - laws passed by the British in order to justify taxation and tightened control over the colonies. The unrest came to a head on March 5th, when a mob of colonists surrounded and threatened British soldiers, leading to the unfortunate event. Colored prints depicting the event, created by Paul Revere, became an extremely successful piece of propaganda in the fight for American Independence. 

Death of Crispus Attucks, 1770
Crispus Attucks was one of the five men killed at the Boston Massacre, and has been called the first martyr of the American Revolution. He is also the only African-American who is known to have died in conflict during this war. Not a great deal is known about him: he was born in Boston, and contemporary documents refer to him as being of mixed-race.
Crispus Attucks, as imaged by a 19th century artist
It is believed that he was also of Wampanoag (a New England Native American tribe) blood. He took two bullets to the chest during the Massacre, and was buried as a hero in the Granary Burial Ground, along with the other four victims. 

Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race
The Iditarod begins today, the first Saturday in March. The race alternates between the Northern and Southern routes in alternate years -- this being a "odd" year, the race will take the southern route this year. The race has been an annual event since 1973, and commemorates the 1925 Great Race of Mercy, in which diphtheria serum was taken by dog sled 674 miles to Nome, Alaska. Today's Iditarod is considerably longer, however. It covers 1161 miles, over challenging terrain, and wind chills that can reach 100 degrees below zero (Fahrenheit). 

Che Guevara Photograph Taken, 1960
You know the one I mean. (If you don't, you can see it above.) The photograph is actually called the Guerrillero Heroico (Heroic Guerilla), and it is justifiably famous. The Maryland College of Art has called it the world's most famous photo, and the Victoria and Albert Museum has claimed that it has been reproduced more than any other photograph in history. The photograph was taken by Alberto Korda in Havana, Cuba, when Guevara was attending a memorial for the victims of the La Coubre explosion.

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