Search Results


Legislature Guarantees Access to Public Schools

March 25, 1845
March 25, 1845

Legislature Guarantees Access to Public Schools

On this day in 1845, the Massachusetts legislature guaranteed that every child in the state would have access to a public school. One source of pressure on the lawmakers was a petition submitted by a...

Boston Minister Tried for Inciting a Riot

April 3, 1855
April 3, 1855

Boston Minister Tried for Inciting a Riot

On this day in 1855, the case against Boston minister Theodore Parker came to trial. Charged with inciting an abolitionist riot, he defended himself by describing the horrors of slavery. He told the dramatic story...

Boston Mourns Martin Luther King, Jr.

April 4, 1968
April 4, 1968

Boston Mourns Martin Luther King, Jr.

On this day in 1968, Boston crackled with tension. African Americans, enraged by the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. in Memphis, took to the streets. Community leaders urged calm, police showed restraint, and while...

H.L. Mencken Arrested in Boston

April 5, 1926
April 5, 1926

H.L. Mencken Arrested in Boston

On this day in 1926, reporter and literary critic H.L. Mencken was arrested on Boston Common for selling a magazine that had been banned by the New England Watch and Ward Society, the city's self-appointed...

Harvard Students Occupy University Hall

April 9, 1969
April 9, 1969

Harvard Students Occupy University Hall

On this day in 1969, Harvard students took over University Hall, one of the college's oldest buildings. Opposed to the escalating war in Vietnam, the protesters demanded Harvard end its Reserve Officers' Training Corps, or...

Abbie Hoffman Dies

April 12, 1989
April 12, 1989

Abbie Hoffman Dies

On this day in 1989, Worcester native Abbie Hoffman died from a drug overdose. A hero of the 1960s counter culture, Hoffman once told a reporter, "I never left Worcester." He was 30 when he...

W.E.B. DuBois Returns to Harvard

April 23, 1904
April 23, 1904

W.E.B. DuBois Returns to Harvard

On this day in 1904, W.E.B. DuBois gave a lecture on "the race question" at Harvard, where nine years before he had been the first black person to receive a Ph.D. From his childhood in...

The Birth of a Nation Sparks Protest

April 26, 1915
April 26, 1915

The Birth of a Nation Sparks Protest

On this day in 1915 Boston's African American community protested the showing of the racist film The Birth of a Nation. When 800 black women gathered at a Baptist church, one speaker suggested that "if...

Activists Erect Tent City in Boston

April 27, 1968
April 27, 1968

Activists Erect Tent City in Boston

On this day in 1968, hundreds of demonstrators occupied a parking lot in Boston's South End. Houses on the site had recently been demolished, and their occupants displaced. To protest this kind of "urban renewal,"...

Sarah Remond Ejected from Boston Theater

May 4, 1853
May 4, 1853

Sarah Remond Ejected from Boston Theater

On this day in 1853, Sarah Parker Remond and two other African Americans entered a Boston theater intending to enjoy a Mozart opera. When the manager discovered they were people of color, he directed them...

Mass Moments is a project of Mass Humanities, whose mission is to support programs that use history, literature, philosophy, and the other humanities disciplines to enhance and improve civic life throughout the Commonwealth.

Please consider helping us towards our goals with a donation today.

Interested in sponsoring Mass Moments?

What is the sum of 2 and 3?