Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Learn Our History Today: May 15

Learn Our History Today:
On May 15, 1864, the Battle of New Market, Virginia, was fought. This battle occurred as part of the Valley Campaigns of 1864, during the Civil War. The battle began when union troops under the command of Major General Franz Sigel opened fire on Confederates, under the command of Major General John C. Breckenridge, prompting the Confederates to launch a frontal attack on the Union troops.  Soon, however, the rebel attack began to falter and a gap opened in their line. This caused Sigel to launch a counterattack. Seeing that he had no choice, Breckenridge sent his reserves, 257 young cadets from the Virginia Military Institute, to plug the hole. Breckenridge was very resistant to using the cadets, and when he finally realized he had no other options he said, “Put the boys in and may God forgive me for that order.” The cadets turned back the union charge, and the Confederate troops, with the cadets at the head, soon swept the Union troops from the field.

Also, on May 15, 1940, the very first McDonald’s restaurant was opened in San Bernardino, California. It started out as barbecue restaurant, but by 1948 they reorganized the restaurant as a hamburger stand, using production line principles. Today, McDonald’s restaurants are found in 119 countries and serve 58 million customers per day.

Another event that occurred on May 15 was the attempted assassination of presidential candidate George Wallace by Arthur Bremer. On May 15, 1972, while campaigning for president in Laurel, Maryland, politician George Wallace was shot five times in the abdomen and chest by Bremer, who also hit three bystanders. This assassination attempt left Wallace paralyzed from the waist down for the rest of his life. Bremer was sentenced to 63 years in prison, but served only 35 years, being released in 2007.

Be sure to visit learnourhistory.com to see all of our latest history dvds for kids.  We have a great selection of videos that make learning U.S. history fun for kids of all ages.

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