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Angelina Grimke Addresses Legislature

February 21, 1838
February 21, 1838

Angelina Grimke Addresses Legislature

On this day in 1838 a woman addressed a legislative body for the first time in American history. An overflow crowd gathered at the State House in Boston as Angelina Grimké, daughter of a South...

Perkins School for the Blind Incorporated

March 2, 1829
March 2, 1829

Perkins School for the Blind Incorporated

On this day in 1829, the New England Asylum for the Blind was incorporated in Boston. The institution opened with six students, but within six years, it had ten times that number. For the first time, blind...

John Brown Speaks in Concord

March 12, 1857
March 12, 1857

John Brown Speaks in Concord

On this day in 1857, John Brown addressed a crowd in Concord Town Hall. He spoke about the situation in Kansas, where a bitter struggle was underway between pro- and anti-slavery settlers. In a matter-of-fact...

Charlotte Forten Enters Salem Normal School

March 13, 1855
March 13, 1855

Charlotte Forten Enters Salem Normal School

On this day in 1855, Charlotte Forten passed the entrance examination for the Salem Normal School, one of four colleges recently established in Massachusetts to train teachers. She was the school's first black student. Eighteen...

Massachusetts Loses Maine

March 15, 1820
March 15, 1820

Massachusetts Loses Maine

On this day in 1820, Massachusetts lost over 30,000 square miles of land as its former province of Maine gained statehood. Mainers had begun campaigning for statehood in the years following the Revolution. The Massachusetts...

Dorothea Dix Begins Her Crusade

March 28, 1841
March 28, 1841

Dorothea Dix Begins Her Crusade

On this day in 1841, Dorothea Dix visited an East Cambridge jail and was appalled to see mentally ill women confined alongside hardened criminals. The 40-year-old teacher and writer had been exposed to the work...

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...

Frances Perkins Born in Boston

April 10, 1880
April 10, 1880

Frances Perkins Born in Boston

On this day in 1880, Frances Perkins, the first woman to hold a cabinet position, was born in Boston. Raised in Worcester, she attended Mt. Holyoke College, where she became committed to improving the lot...

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...

Newburyport Fire Leads to Execution for Arson

May 18, 1820
May 18, 1820

Newburyport Fire Leads to Execution for Arson

On this day in 1820, a barn filled with hay burned to the ground in Newburyport. Just three days later, cries of "fire" alarmed the town again. Terrified residents were convinced they had an arsonist...

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