This Day (In Nomine Patris Edition)

Published:September 10, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe

On this day in 1570, a group of Spanish Jesuit missionaries landed at what we now call the Chesapeake but what they called La Bahía de Santa María, or the Bay of the Mother of God. They had with them a local boy, an Indian who had joined the Spanish back in 1561 and had since been baptized, taking the name Don Luís de Velasco. With Don Luís’s help, the brothers figured, what could possibly go wrong?

Well … as it turns out …

In political news, on this day in 1607, Edward Maria Wingfield was ousted as president of Jamestown and replaced with John Ratcliffe. By the end of the month, half of the settlement’s men would be dead. So that didn’t go well. A year later, John Smith was installed in the top spot, and during the winter the colony lost only a handful of men. A year later on this day, George Percy took over. What could possibly go wrong?

Well … as it turns out

Anyway, in matris nomen, on this day in 1894, the United Daughters of the Confederacy was formed in Nashville, Tennessee, by Caroline Meriwether Goodlett and Anna Davenport Raines. They saw the organization as a national “federation of all Southern Women’s Auxiliary, Memorial, and Soldiers’ Aid Societies.” Sometimes implicitly, sometimes explicitly, the UDC became part of a larger effort to restore a vision of white southern heritage—and what could possibly go wrong with that?

Well … on this day in 1959, as part of an effort called Massive Resistance that opposed the desegregation of public schools, the public schools closed in Prince Edward County. Not coincidentally, the Prince Edward Academy opened for white students only.

A much shorter version of this post was originally published on September 10, 2011.

IMAGE: A frame from Land Marked/Marquette (Series), 2005, 16mm sound, color, 23 mins.