International law? What's that? in 1986. First marches for Gay Pride in 1970. Saving a bridge in 1923. Torturers unwelcome in 1980. Bronx hospital patients first in 1970. Guantanamo opens in 1903. Gettysburg in 1863.
A precursor to Memorial Day occurred in 1865 when thousands of freed slaves marched in Charleston, South Carolina to declare their sense of the meaning of the Civil War, that it was about their emancipation over a slaveholders' republic.
President Wilson unleashes repression of peace advocates. Republican Party denounces slave trade as a ‘crime against humanity.’ First compulsory public education. Camden draft protestors acquitted. Wiretapping gets the nod. Amnesty for Confederates.
Today, on Presidents’ Day, we rightly celebrate Abraham Lincoln for helping end slavery. But we shouldn’t forget the unstoppable force that also brought down the Slave Power: the several million slaves who left the plantation, many of whom joined the Union Army.