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Mary Grace Quackenbos Humiston (née Winterton)
Grace was the VERY FIRST United States Attorney. After graduating from New York University with a Bachelor of Laws in 1903, she opened the People’s Law Firm. She took up for the poor and immigrant population of New York, quoted in the New York Times as saying: “My idea in establishing the firm was to demonstrate that a legal bureau for the aid of the poor could be operated at a scale of prices within their reach and to their great benefit, and I think this has been done.” No nonsense woman was our Grace indeed.
She journeyed through the south investigating incidences of “peonage” throughout the region. Grace often disguised herself, lied about her identity, and just plain hid in order to gain admittance to work camps. When she returned, she was ill, but she raised almost fifty counts of verifiable peonage against people throughout the south. This prompted an investigation by the Department of Justice, and Assistant Attorney General Russel took a similar trip to see for himself the conditions which Grace documented.
She was hired as a Special Assistant US DA for the Southern District of New York and she was appointed to cover peonage matters over the entire US. She traveled to many countries, including Turkey, Greece, Germany, Egypt, and Italy in order to investigate how the system of peonism began, and how citizens were lured from those countries to America into virtual slavery.
Many plantation owners were frustrated by her efforts and nicknamed her “busybody Quackenbos”. Not unlike today, when articles are written about her, the focus is not about her work, but about her dress and mannerisms.
In 1917, Ruth Cruger, a young pretty girl went missing in Harlem. Her father went to Grace for help, and she took the case Pro Bono. Ruth had visited a motorcycle repair shop the day she disappeared, and the police had been reluctant to grill the owner of the shop because he was a prominent businessman (or probably just paying the cops to stay quiet). Grace wouldn’t let it go, and got a search warrant for Cocchi’s motorcycle shop. He’d fled to Italy, but they searched the shop anyway. They dug up the basement, and found Ruth’s body, her skull crushed.
Cocchi was convicted and given 27 years in prison, even though Italy refused to extradite him. He felt confident enough in his safety that he even confessed to the crime. This case is what earned Humiston the nickname “Mrs. Sherlock Holmes”. She was not in love with the comparison however. Grace was quoted as saying: “No, I never read Sherlock Holmes. In fact, I am not a believer in deduction. Common sense and persistence will always solve a mystery. You never need theatricals nor Dr. Watsons if you stick to a case.”
Here is the Sufferin’ Till Sufferage Schoolhouse Rock video:
This week’s Time-Team Travel takes them back to 1919, where they’re dropped in the middle of the Suffragette movement. Alice Paul is framed for murder and then subsequently murdered – setting back and perhaps completely stalling women’s’ rights.
Keynes’ Interest & Triple, Agent Chick
Keynes shows a creepy interest in Emma, who goes back to 1919 in order to supervise the mission. She’s instructed not to “do the dirty work,” because she’s become too important to him. When she finds out that the mission is going to derail female empowerment, she defects and helps the Time-Team to kill the sleeper agent.
Jiya and Connor have some technology from Rittenhouse’s base gathered after Wyatt’s infiltration. They work on salvaging information from the damaged chip throughout the episode, where Connor and Jiya have several conversations about not giving up. In a “last five minute” scene, Agent Christoper and Connor finally get an image to appear, and it’s Jessica.
On March 4
National Grammar Day
1681 – Charles II grants a land charter to William Penn for the area that will later become Pennsylvania.
1789 – In New York City, the first Congress of the United States meets, putting the United States Constitution into effect. The United States Bill of Rights is written and proposed to Congress.
1791 – Vermont is admitted to the United States as the fourteenth state.
1794 – The 11th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is passed by the U.S. Congress.
1797 – John Adams is inaugurated as the 2nd President of the United States of America, becoming the first President to begin his presidency on March 4
1837 – The city of Chicago is incorporated.
1861 – The first national flag of the Confederate States of America (the “Stars and Bars”) is adopted.
1865 – The third and final national flag of the Confederate States of America is adopted by the Confederate Congress.
1913 – The United States Department of Labor is formed.
1917 – Jeannette Rankin of Montana becomes the first female member of the United States House of Representatives.
1933 – Frances Perkins becomes United States Secretary of Labor, the first female member of the United States Cabinet.
1957 – The S&P 500 stock market index is introduced, replacing the S&P 90.
1966 – In an interview in the London Evening Standard, The Beatles‘ John Lennon declares that the band is “more popular than Jesus now”.
1974 – People magazine is published for the first time in the United States as People Weekly.
1980 – Nationalist leader Robert Mugabe wins a sweeping election victory to become Zimbabwe‘s first black prime minister.
1985 – The Food and Drug Administration approves a blood test for AIDS infection, used since then for screening all blood donations in the United States.
1986 – The Soviet Vega 1 begins returning images of Halley’s Comet and the first images of its nucleus.
1998 – Gay rights: Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Services, Inc.: The Supreme Court of the United States rules that federal laws banning on-the-job sexual harassment also apply when both parties are the same sex.
1678 – Antonio Vivaldi, Italian violinist and composer
1876 – Theodore Hardeen, Hungarian-American magician (brother of Harry Houdini)
1877 – Garrett Morgan, African-American inventor (early gas mask, three-bulb [warning] stoplight, hair straightener)
1888 – Knute Rockne, American football player and coach
1906 – Avery Fisher, American violinist and engineer, founded Fisher Electronics
1909 – Harry Helmsley, American businessman (Husband of Leona Helmsley)
1914 – Barbara Newhall Follett, American author
1916 – William Alland, American actor, director, and producer
1925 – Alan R. Battersby, English chemist and academic
1931 – Wally Bruner, American journalist and television host
1932 – Frank Wells, American businessman
1933 – Nino Vaccarella, Italian race car driver
1935 – Bent Larsen, Danish chess player and author
1938 – Paula Prentiss, American actress
1944 – Bobby Womack, American singer-songwriter
1948 – James Ellroy, American writer
1948 – Chris Squire, English singer-songwriter and bass guitarist (Yes)
1950 – Rick Perry, American politician, 47th Governor of Texas
1953 – Emilio Estefan, Cuban-American drummer and producer (Miami Sound Machine)
1953 – Ray Price, Australian rugby player and sportscaster
1954 – Catherine O’Hara, Canadian-American actress and comedian (SCTV)
1957 – Mykelti Williamson, American actor and director
1958 – Patricia Heaton, American actress
1961 – Ray Mancini, American boxer
1961 – Steven Weber, American actor, producer, and screenwriter (Wings, iZombie)
1962 – Simon Bisley, English author and illustrator
1963 – Jason Newsted, American heavy metal singer-songwriter and bass player (Metallica)
1966 – Kevin Johnson, American basketball player and politician, 55th Mayor of Sacramento
1967 – Evan Dando, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (The Lemonheads)
1974 – Crowbar, American wrestler
1978 – Jean-Marc Pelletier, American ice hockey player
1986 – Mike Krieger, Brazilian-American computer programmer and businessman, co-founded Instagram
1993 – Bobbi Kristina Brown, American singer and actress
1858 – Matthew C. Perry, American naval commander
1972 – Charles Biro, American author and illustrator (Airboy)
1990 – Hank Gathers, American basketball player
1992 – Art Babbitt, American animator and director (developer of Goofy for Disney)
1994 – John Candy, Canadian comedian and actor
1996 – Minnie Pearl, American entertainer
2008 – Gary Gygax, American game designer, co-created Dungeons & Dragons
2008 – Leonard Rosenman, American composer and conductor
2014 – Jack Kinzler, American engineer (NASA Apollo & Gemini programs)
2016 – Pat Conroy, American author
Next Episode’s Summary & Promo
THE DAY REAGAN WAS SHOT (TV-14)
The Time Team travels back to 1981 Washington D.C. on the day President Reagan was shot, only to discover that the Sleeper’s target isn’t the President – but a young rookie police office – none other than Agent Christopher (Sakina Jaffrey), who brought the time team together and kept the Lifeboat from getting into Rittenhouse’s hands. The Time Team must save Agent Christopher’s life and prevent her from making a mistake that set her on a different path that would forever change her own future, the future of the team — and the future of the world.
Links from this episode:
Friend of the show, Michael Ahr, writes about this episode on DenofGeek.com
Fangirlish review about “Mrs. Sherlock Holmes” is here.
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