|Women Gain Rights,
Fashion, and Flappers (The 1920's)
Females advanced in the work force
as more women began to get hired for office jobs. They also
gained several rights and a freer lifestyle.
In 1920, the 19th Amendment was
passed in the United States, granting suffrage to women. Four
years later, in 1923, women living in Great Britain also gained
a step forward. The Matrimonial Causes Act was put into force.
This meant that in the event of a divorce, both spouses were
regarded as equals.
In the 1920's the world experienced
several revolutions in areas such as music and new scientific
discoveries. People seemed to be taking part in this "change"
as well. For instance, women adopted new fashion standards (usually
more casual) and beliefs. For women, hair was cut shorter (sometimes
the Eton crop) and clothing changed drastically, becoming shorter
and less "covering." So revolutionary were these changes that
in 1925, the Archbishop of Naples pointed a blaming finger at
short skirts. He believed that they were the cause for an Italian
earthquake. More liberty was granted to women when advancements
in technology created cars with electric self-starters. They
would no longer have to hand-crank them or have the assistance
of a male.
The flapper, a sign of the 1920's,
characterized the changes that were occurring in the decade.
Flappers were young ladies, usually dressing in the styles described
in the paragraph above. Some were also known to be cigarette-smokers
into Effect in the United States (1920's)
Following the first world war,
the U.S. took on what was known as "The Noble Experiment," or
Prohibition. With the passage of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution
in 1919, the selling, creating, and moving of alcoholic beverages
was made illegal in the U.S. Intended to lessen the "evils"
of alcohol, the movement created new ones instead. For instance,
organized crime escalated, and notorious names such as Al Capone
People began to look for other
ways of obtaining alcohol, despite the established law. Although
it was a dangerous practice, they began to make their own drinks
with wood alcohol and medical supplies, sometimes causing blindness,
paralysis, or even death. Others began to sell alcohol illegally
in speakeasies. In New York City during the 1920's, there were
some 32,000 of these businesses operating. The source of real
alcohol was obtained by smuggling it in from Mexico, Canada,
and the West Indies. This trade, known as bootlegging, became
quite profitable. Many of those who worked for the law did not
help to rid of these problems, as they were able to make a little
extra cash through bribes. Alphonse "Scarface" Capone (1899
- 1947) was one of these influential bribers. He virtually controlled
the city of Chicago, and in 1927, he and his band made $60 million
by bootlegging. He was finally sent to jail in 1932. His charge:
not killing, but tax evasion. He would die in 1947 after suffering
Before serving time in prison,
however, he had a few matters to handle. The Valentine's Day
Massacre, which took place on February 14, 1929, was one of
the many outcomes of organized crime during the 1920's. On that
day, "Bugs" Moran, who was Al Capone's biggest competition,
had some followers waiting for him at a designated meeting place.
But before Moran ever got there, Capone's "police-dressed" men
murdered them. Scarface was not present at the time, however.
He was in Florida.
As for Prohibition, the 18th Amendment
was repealed in 1933, when the 21st Amendment was put into action.
It had not been such a "noble" experiment after all.
|The Miss American
|In 1921, the first Miss
America Pageant took place with a total of eight contestants in
Atlantic City, New Jersey. The winner, a 16-year old girl from
Washington, D.C., was Margaret Gorman. In the beginning the competitors
stood not as delegates of their home states, but for their cities.
in R38 Accident (1921)
|In August of 1921, only
five of 49 persons survived a R38 accident. The R38, the largest
airship built at the time, was being tested by the British. The
original plans were to sell the 700-foot airship to the United
States. However, the test flight failed drastically, however.
After it tore in half, the machine burst into flames, causing
a death toll of 44 British and American people.
Mussolini Becomes Prime Minister of Italy (1922)
Benito Mussolini (1883 - 1945)
was born on July 29, 1833. The journalist/teacher would have
five children with his wife Rachele Guidi. As leader of Italy,
he would go on to become Europe's first fascist dictator. (A
fascist government is one in which a race or nation is placed
before the individual.) Mussolini first came to power as Prime
Minister of Italy. Feeling that Italy had not been compensated
adequately after World War I (the country was given only a few
small territories), he received his position by threatening
to carry out a "March on Rome." Wishing to avoid unnecessary
bloodshed, King Vittorio Emanuele III (or King Victor Emmanuel
III) summoned Mussolini to Rome and asked him to become Prime
Minister in 1922. In October of the same year, Benito Mussolini
and his 22,000 supporters, or Black Shirts, marched into Rome.
In 1925, he became Il Duce or the leader;Italy was now under
a dictatorship. The former journalist/teacher's rise to power
gave Great Britain and France new hopes for European peace.
They were, unfortunately, mistaken.
Benito Mussolini did, however,
reform his country for the better in more ways than one. During
his reign he created new plans that helped industrial and agricultural
production in Italy. In 1935, however, the nation invaded Ethiopia
and gained control of the country. Mussolini did not enter World
War II until mid-1940, and when he did, he faced several losses.
Eight years later, the same king who gave Mussolini his power
would strip him of it.
While King Victor Emmanuel was
working on a cease-fire, or armistice, with the Allies, Mussolini
(with the help of Germany) put together a puppet Social Republic
in the northern part of his country. Mussolini and Clara Petacci,
his mistress, were killed by partisans on April 28, 1945, when
the two tried to flee to Switzerland.
Gandhi Sent to Jail (1922)
In 1922, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi
(1869 - 1948), better known to his followers as Mahatma, or
"great soul," was sent to jail. His offense: resisting to accept
British control of India. He carried out his protest by writing
three articles against British rule in Young India, his journal.
The pacifist and his followers used non-violent tactics and
civil disobedience as means of protest. The India Act of 1919
was established so that Britain could eventually grant self-government
to India. Although the act was a step forward, many Indians
believed that change was not happening at a progressive rate.
Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was
born on October 2, 1869, and assassinated by Nathuram Godse
on January 30, 1948. Before his death he had studied law in
London and practiced in South Africa.
an Independent Nation (1922)
|For a period of forty
years, Great Britain controlled the nation of Egypt (located partly
in Africa and partly in Asia). British troops were sent in 1882,
and the country, officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, gained
its freedom in 1922. However, the British still made their power
known in a number of areas, however. For instance, the Sudan was
kept under British control and soldiers were kept at the Suez
Canal, much to the dismay of many Egyptians.
and His Beer Hall Putsch (1923)
|In November of 1923,
Adolf Hitler and his Storm Troopers attempted to gain control
by barging in on a beer hall meeting. The march was interrupted
when police fired shots, and as a direct result, sixteen of Hitler's
men were killed. Hitler was soon arrested and sent to jail for
treason. It was here that he would later write his book, Mein
Kampf or My Struggle.
|In May 1926, a constitution
was established in Paris for the republic of Lebanon. In order
to try to resolve differences between Muslims and Christians in
the republic, the presidential slot was made open to a Christian
and Prime Minister for a Muslim. Parliament seats and Cabinet
positions were also divided according to religious beliefs: for
every five Muslims in the Parliament, six Christians were added.
Gain Control of China (1927)
|In 1927, Chiang Kai-shek
(1887-1975) and his nationalist army, the Kuomintang, took control
of Nanjing and Shanghai. Dr. Sun Yat-sen (1866 - 1925) or Sun
Chung-shan was the original leader and founding force of the Kuomintang,
but his death in 1925 marked the handing over of power to Chiang.
In 1912, Sun had established the Republic of China after removing
the Manchu dynasty from power the year before. The army would
invade Peking in 1928 and Chiang, the leader of the National Revolutionary
Army, filled the presidential office of the Chinese Republic.
Chiang and his nationalist party would lose power to Mao Zedong
and the Communists in 1949. Chiang passed away on April 5, 1975.
|Lucky Lindy and
The Spirit of St. Louis (1927)
|On May 20, 1927, twenty-five-year
old airmail pilot Charles Augustus Lindbergh (1902 - 1974) achieved
a feat that had previously claimed the lives of two French pilots.
Fourteen would die trying to repeat his accomplishment, and it
would not be until June of 1928 when Amelia Earhart was able to
do so. His amazing deed: becoming the first man to fly solo nonstop
across the Atlantic Ocean. Afterwards, Lindbergh became an international
star. His welcoming party in Paris consisted of 100,000 persons
and numerous songs were written in his honor. The parade held
in his honor in the U.S. drew a crowd of around 4.5 million. Lindbergh
left Roosevelt Field in Long Island, New York, on May 20, 1927,
at 7:52 a.m. and landed in Paris, France, 33 1/2 hours later.
His plane, The Spirit of St. Louis, a 220 horsepower monoplane,
was named for the Missouri investors who had sponsored his flight.
Lindbergh also used $2,000 for the flight. The pilot would go
on to receive a Congressional Medal of Honor and a Pulitzer Prize.
While in Maui, Hawaii, he passed away on August 26, 1974.
Re-elected to Office (1927)
|In May of 1927, Thomas
Masaryk, who had helped to create Czechoslovakia, was elected
to another term as leader. He held his office of President during
1919 - 1935, but was forced to give up his power when he became
ill. Masaryk passed away in 1937.
|The Sacco and
Vanzetti Case (1927)
On April 15, 1920, a guard named
Alessandro Berardelli and paymaster Frederick A. Parmenter were
robbed and killed by gunmen. The two, who were employees of
Slater and Morrill, a South Braintree, Massachusetts, shoe factory,
were holding two containers of payroll (around $15,773.59).
An investigation took place and
Italian immigrants Nicola Sacco, a shoemaker, and Bartolomeo
Vanzetti, a fish peddler, were taken into custody. Although
not much evidence was found, police discovered that both were
carrying guns. Sacco also had in his possession a paper advertising
an anarchist gathering. His gun, which matched the one that
had been used in the killings, was proven to be the murder weapon
in 1961. There was no evidence, however, that Sacco had used
it during the crime.
Regardless of whether they had
really committed the crime or not, many people around the world
felt that the two Italian immigrants had not received a fair
trial. What the two did receive, in their opinions, was prejudice.
Sacco and Vanzetti had been mistreated for their heritage, World
War I draft dodging, and anarchist beliefs. Despite Celestine
Madeiros, a criminal on death row, admitting to being a part
of the crime, the trial ended on July 14, 1921, and Sacco and
Vanzetti were sentenced to death. They were electrocuted on
August 23, 1927.
Fifty years after the execution
of Sacco and Vanzetti, Michael Dukakis, the governor of Massachusetts,
acknowledged that the two immigrants had not received a fair
trial. On August 23, 1977, their names were cleared.
| Silver Lake, Colorado receives
76 inches of snow in one day! (1921)
| Due to a strike that lasted
for nine days in 1926, Great Britain makes general strikes illegal
by passing the Trades Disputes Act. (1927)
| Herbert Clark Hoover (1874
- 1964) is elected President of the United States. (1928)