A Violent Decade of Assassinations

Today in History, June 8, 1968:

What a busy news day this must have been?!

James Earl Ray, the assassin of Martin Luther King, Jr is arrested in London, England where he was attempting to make his way to an African nation run by racists (ironic). He would eventually be convicted of assassinating Civil Rights leader King.

On the same day…..

…another civil rights activist is laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery. Robert F. Kennedy would be laid to rest within 30 yards of his brother John, assassinated only five years earlier.

H. Norman Schwarzkopf Stared Down into Baby Charles Lindbergh’s Shallow Grave…

Today in History, May 12, 1932:

H. Norman Schwarzkopf looks down into the recently found shallow grave of infant Charles Lindbergh, Jr. in a field not far from the Lindbergh home.

The Lindbergh baby had been kidnapped from his home on March 1st, the ransom paid, but the child was not returned to his parents.

Schwarzkopf, a West Point graduate and WWI veteran, had been appointed in 1921 by the Governor of New Jersey to create, organize and train the New Jersey State Police.

It was in this capacity that he led the investigation of the Lindbergh Kidnapping, the “Crime of the Century”. He would prove that the baby had been killed accidentally as he was being carried down a ladder from his second floor bedroom.

When a new governor took office, Schwarzkopf would be sacked. Politics.

He would return to the US Army when WWII broke out, where he would be tasked to use his logistics and organizational talents to train the Iranian police, a country where the US was setting up railroads to supply the Soviet Union for the fight against Germany.

After the war, Schwarzkopf would also help set up the security forces of the Shah of Iran…back before the Iranian revolution made that country enemy #1.

Two years after he investigated the Lindbergh kidnapping, his son, H. Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. would be born.

And as most know, “Stormin’ Norman” would follow his father to the middle east in the service of his country nearly six decades later.

The elder H. Norman Schwarzkopf would take part in the intrigue and skullduggery of the Middle East during the forties and fifties after solving the Lindbergh Kidnapping; his namesake would go back to the volatile region with him father’s background and wisdom, but to kick ass and take names.

Victory and Assassination

Today in History, April 4: 1865:

150 years ago today. President Lincoln enters Richmond, the Confederate Capitol. Lincoln had been at City Point when informed that Richmond had been taken the day before by Union Army forces.

He immediately sailed on the USS Malvern, Flag Officer David Dixon Porter’s flagship for Richmond. After he disembarked, he was initially escorted through crowds by a contingent of sailors, who were very relieved when they were met by a group of Union Cavalry to assist in escorting the President to the home of Confederate President Jefferson Davis.

Many former slaves attempted to pay homage to Lincoln, who would not allow it. Onlookers watched from the windows and street corners.

At Davis’ house, Lincoln sat in Davis’ chair, then toured the house.

When later asked by Union Gen. Weitzel how the conquered rebels should be treated, Lincoln indicated that he would not give an order in that regard, but that his advice would be to, “Let them up easy….let them up easy”.

As for the nervous sailors and cavalrymen that escorted him? As it turns out, Lincoln was safer in the Confederate capitol that his own. He had only ten days until he would be assassinated.

103 years later to the day, another man dedicated to civil rights and the advancement of justice, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would be assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee.

April is a Historic month with many stories to tell.