Motown Records founder Berry Gordy Jr. brought black music to white audiences. He premiered a new sound, and launched the careers of such artists as Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder and the Supremes. In 1975, Gordy was given a lifetime achievement award at the American Music Awards, and in 1988, Gordy was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
For more information, visit Caleb Marsh, Happy Birthday Berry Gordy, Founder of Motown, November 29, 2009.
When the Rouse Simmons went down, it was the end of an era: The last hurrah for a dying age of wooden schooners. And the final act of the Great Lakes' real-life Santa Claus. Although the exact time the Rouse Simmons sank is unknown, it is usually attributed to Thanksgiving or November 28, 1912.
For the full article, see Lou Blouin, "Captain Santa's Last Voyage", Found Michigan, December 23, 2013.
Lives and Legends of the Christmas Tree Ships brings the maritime heritage of the Great Lakes to life, using the tragic story of the schooner Rouse Simmons as a porthole into the robust but often forgotten communities that thrived along Lake Michigan from the Civil War to World War I. Memorialized in songs, poems, fiction, and even a musical, the infamous ship that went down in a Thanksgiving storm while delivering Christmas trees to Chicago has long been shrouded in myth and legend. As a result, the larger story of the captain, crew, and affected communities has often been overlooked. Fred Neuschel delves into this everyday life of camaraderie, drudgery, ambition, and adventure—with tales of the Midwest’s burgeoning immigrant groups and rapid industrialization—to create a true story that is even more fascinating than the celebrated legends. For more information, see Fred Neuschel, Lives and legends of the Christmas tree ships, Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, c2007.
On this day, 29 ships were either damaged or lost during a winter gale on Lake Superior.
Also see Freshwater Fury: The Great Lakes Storm of 1913, Michigan In Pictures, November 7, 2009.
During the last days of November 1864, General William Tecumseh Sherman was nearing the end of his epic march across Georgia to the sea. As he approached Savanah, Sherman requested that Union forces stationed at Hilton Head, South Carolina be dispatched to assist him by cutting the Charleston & Savannah Railroad near Pocotaligo. Cutting this railroad would prevent Confederate reinforcements from beefing up Savanah’s defenses before Sherman’s arrival.
On November 28, an expedition of 5,500 Union soldiers, sailors and marines sailed for the Broad River. Among them were the 102nd U.S. Colored Troops (originally the First Michigan Colored Infantry). There were delays, as fog and poor navigation sent some ships up the wrong stream. The troops were again delayed after disembarking from their ships at Boyd’s Landing, as they took the wrong road and had to backtrack. While Union forces marched and countermarched, Confederates dug into their earth and log fortifications on Honey Hill, a rocky ridge that blocked the road on which the expedition needed to travel.
The 102nd arrived at Boyd’s Landing at 11 a.m. and marched to the battlefield to find carnage before them. Part of the unit was stationed behind the front lines to stop any Union soldiers attempting to straggle away to escape the fighting. As the assault stalled, and with Northern troops pinned down and running low on ammunition, the order was given to retreat. One battery of Union cannons had nearly been wiped out in the attack. The battery had “lost two of its officers and most of its horses and cannoneers; two of the ammunition-chests on the limbers were blown up.”
The 102nd was ordered forward into the storm of Confederate fire to pull the cannons back to prevent their capture. Each cannon weighed around 2,600 pounds, and, with their ammunition and equipment, was normally pulled by a team of six horses. The commander of the expedition, General John Hatch, describes the repeated attempts of the officers and men of the 102nd to pull the cannons back to Union lines:
A detail of a company from the One hundred and second U.S. Colored Troops was ordered to bring off the guns. Capt. A. E. Lindsay, commanding the company, was killed, and Lieut. H. H. Alvord was severely wounded. The command of the company devolved upon a sergeant, who did not understand the object of the advance, and failed to accomplish it. First Lieut. O. W. Bennett, One hundred and second U.S. Colored Troops, with thirty men was detached for the same purpose, and executed it in the coolest and most gallant manner.
Colonel Henry Chapman, commander of the 102nd, also singled out Lieutenant Bennett in his report of the action:
First Lieut. O. W. Bennett was sent with his company to endeavor, if possible, to save the guns. Lieutenant Bennett, with thirty men, went forward fully 100 yards in advance of our first line, and succeeded in bringing away the three guns. Too high praise cannot be awarded to Lieutenant Bennett for the gallant manner in which he led his men in that perilous enterprise, nor to his men who so faithfully followed their leader.
The 102nd stayed on the battlefield until 7.30 p.m., when they fell back with the rest of the army to their landing place. Bennett who – like all the officers of the 102nd – was white, received the Medal of Honor for his courage at the Battle of Honey Hill. None of his men were even considered for the honor, though their undeniable bravery was memorialized in army reports and newspapers. A correspondent who witnessed the 102nd in battle wrote, “after having been three and a half years in the field and participated In sixteen different engagements, I never before saw men exhibit such unyielding bravery In battle.”
Source : Eric Perkins, “Covered Themselves with Glory”, Seeking Michigan, March 3, 2015.
Michigan’s 488,000 concealed handgun license holders will soon see a change in how permits are issued.
Starting Tuesday, three-member county gun boards will no longer issue, deny, revoke or suspend licenses. County clerks will assume the responsibilities while the Michigan State Police will conduct checks to see if applicants are legally disqualified due to their age, criminal history, mental illness or other factors.
The cost of an initial application and license will drop from $105 to $100, not including a fingerprinting fee. The cost of a renewal application and license, which are good for four to five years, will rise from $105 to $115.
An initial license will have to be issued or disqualified within 45 days of fingerprints being taken instead of within 45 days of a licensing board getting a fingerprint analysis from the state police. A renewal must be issued or denied within 30 days instead of the current 60-day deadline.
The law is the latest step toward making Michigan a true “shall-issue” state, in which a permit has to be issued as long as an applicant has taken a gun safety course, has no felony convictions and meets other requirements such as not being subject to a protection order. The measure eliminates the ability to deny a license to someone not explicitly disqualified by law but who still might pose a safety risk, which has led gun control advocates to warn that an important safeguard is going away as well as gun boards’ practice of interviewing applicants in person.
Of the 2,081 applications denied in the 2013-14 fiscal year, 349 were denied because a gun board decided it would be detrimental to the safety of the applicant or others.
For the full article, see "County gun boards abolished in Mich. starting Tuesday", Detroit News, November 27, 2015.
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