Monday, March 5, 2012
Learn Our History Today: March 5
Learn Our History Today: On today’s date in 1770, a group of furious colonists gathered outside of the Customs House in Boston, MA, and began throwing rocks and snowballs at a British Soldier who was guarding the building. This was in response to their opposition against British troops who had occupied the city to enforce the strict taxation laws passed by British parliament without American representation.
When the sentinel at the Customs House called for assistance, a British corporal and seven Redcoats came to help, affixing their bayonets to their rifles. The angry colonists continued to hurl snow at the soldiers, daring them to fire. Private Hugh Montgomery slipped in the snow and fell, accidentally firing his rifle into the crowd, prompting the other soldiers to fire, too. After the smoke cleared, 5 colonists lay dying or dead while another three were seriously injured. It’s a common belief that the deaths of the five men were the first fatalities of the American Revolution. The event in which I’m writing about has gone down in history as the Boston Massacre.
Also on March 5, 1977, the first and only airing of the Dial-a-President radio program aired on CBS. The show featured President Jimmy Carter and CBS anchorman Walter Cronkite, and allowed callers from across the nation to telephone in and ask questions of the president. In the course of the two-hour broadcast, about 9 million calls were made to the CBS radio studio.