Today in History

  • Grand Jury opens against Aaron Burr

    In a Richmond courthouse, federal prosecutors begin grand jury proceedings against former Vice President Aaron Burr, accused of treason. The trial, argued before Chief Justice John Marshall, became one of the most controversial trials because of the defendant and the charges.

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  • Brooks beats Sumner in the US Capitol

    South Carolina Congressman Preston Brooks beats Massachusetts Senator Charles Sumner with his metal-tipped walking cane as Sumner worked at his desk in the United States Senate Chamber. Sumner, a firm opponent of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, had openly mocked Brooks's cousin, Senator Andrew Butler, and accused slave-owners of raping their slaves.

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  • Great Society announced

    While delivering a commencement address at the University of Michigan, President Lyndon B. Johnson announces his vision for the Great Society—a plan to eliminate racial prejudice and inequality, improve education, and reimagine health care. 

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