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Emily Greene Balch Born

January 8, 1867
January 8, 1867

Emily Greene Balch Born

On this day in 1867, Emily Balch was born in Jamaica Plain. Her parents' affluence and enlightened views allowed her to attend college at a time when few women did. She entered Bryn Mawr in...

Bread and Roses Strike Begins

January 12, 1912
January 12, 1912

Bread and Roses Strike Begins

On this day in 1912, the labor protest later known as the "Bread and Roses" strike began in Lawrence. A new state law had reduced the maximum workweek from 56 to 54 hours. Factory owners...

Isaiah Thomas Born

January 19, 1749
January 19, 1749

Isaiah Thomas Born

On this day in 1749, the Patriot printer Isaiah Thomas was born. In 1770, Thomas established the Massachusetts Spy, the first newspaper aimed at middle-class readers. While other papers were happy with 400 subscribers, the...

The Crucible Opens on Broadway

January 22, 1953
January 22, 1953

The Crucible Opens on Broadway

On this day in 1953, Arthur Miller's play The Crucible opened on Broadway. Four years after winning the Pulitzer Prize for Death of a Salesman, Miller had written a far more controversial play. Set in...

Rebels Attack Springfield Arsenal

January 25, 1787
January 25, 1787

Rebels Attack Springfield Arsenal

On this day in 1787, 2,000 farmers from western Massachusetts attacked the new federal arsenal at Springfield. The government soldiers returned fire, killing three of the farmers. This was the beginning of the end of...

Julia Ward Howe Elected to American Academy of Arts

January 28, 1907
January 28, 1907

Julia Ward Howe Elected to American Academy of Arts

On this day in 1907, 89-year-old Julia Ward Howe became the first woman elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Howe lived most of her long life in Boston, but it was in...

First African American Graduate of Harvard Born

January 30, 1844
January 30, 1844

First African American Graduate of Harvard Born

On this day in 1844, Richard Greener, the first African American graduate of Harvard, was born. Born in Philadelphia, his mother moved the family to the Boston area in search of educational opportunities for her children....

Native American Writer Born

January 31, 1798
January 31, 1798

Native American Writer Born

On this day in 1798, a member of the Pequot tribe named William Apess was born in Colrain, a village in western Massachusetts. Although his childhood was marked by poverty and abuse, he learned to...

Activist Florence Luscomb Born

February 6, 1887
February 6, 1887

Activist Florence Luscomb Born

On this day in 1887, lifelong political activist Florence Luscomb was born in Lowell. As a child, she heard the legendary Susan B. Anthony speak. In her 20s, she traveled the state campaigning for woman...

Lewis Latimer Awarded First Patent

February 10, 1874
February 10, 1874

Lewis Latimer Awarded First Patent

On this day in 1874, inventor Lewis Latimer received his first patent. The son of a Virginia couple who had escaped from slavery, he was born and raised in Chelsea. After a stint in the...