Woodrow Wilson

(5)  The Start of the Wilson Presidency, 1913-1914


==Jan.02 > The radical Alice Paul forms the Congressional Union (later renamed the Women’s Party) - ~suffragettes begin to concentrate their efforts on the passage of a constitutional amendment

==Jan.06 > The US Navy uses aircraft on maneuvers for the first time, off Guantanamo Bay

==Jan.07 > Burton patents a process for the thermal cracking of petroleum - gasoline becomes readily available, encouraging the use of automobiles

==Jan.08-mid.Jan > A conference is held in Washington on Army organization - Secretary of War Stimson gains approval for the first American Army divisions established in peacetime

==Jan.09 > Richard Nixon is born to a Quaker family in Yorba Linda, California

==Jan.26 > Jim Thorpe, arguably the greatest all-round American athlete, is compelled to relinquish his 1912 Olympic medals for having briefly played semi-pro baseball

==Feb.03 > Grand Central Station opens in New York City

Latin American Relations.
==Feb.09-19 > Without authorization, US Ambassador to Mexico Henry Lane Wilson energetically assists a bloody conservative revolt that overthrows the legally elected Madero government, sponsors talks between rebel factions that lead to the establishment of the Huerta regime, and tacitly consents to Huerta's stated intention to execute Madero.  (see Jun.18)

==Feb.13 > Governor Woodrow Wilson of New Jersey (soon to be President) signs the ‘Seven Sisters Acts’, providing for tough regulation of corporations - the measures are repealed in 1920

==Feb.14 > Taft vetoes the restrictive Immigration Bill, which contains a literacy test

==Feb.17 > The Armoury Show opens in New York City: modern European art enters America - conservative critics are horrified: Duchamp’s Nude Descending a Staircase is called an “explosion in a shingle factory”

Pacific Coast.Labor.
==Feb.17 > A minimum wage law goes into effect in Oregon

Popular Culture.
==Feb.19 > Cracker Jacks begins to add a prize to each package

Latin American Relations.Military.
==Feb.22 > In response to the worsening situation in Mexico, 4,000 troops of the US 2nd Division are mobilized along the border

==Feb.25 > To the surprise of conservatives, the 16th Amendment becomes law, forming the basis for the graduated income tax, which will eventually replace tariffs as the chief source of revenue for the Federal government

Northeast.Labor.Far Left.
The Paterson strike:
==Feb.25 > The IWW calls a general strike of silk workers in Paterson, New Jersey - the young IWW agitator Elizabeth Gurley Flynn is arrested
==Feb.27 > Paterson police arrest a socialist for publicly reading the free-speech clause of the New Jersey constitution - ~widespread arrests of strikers for unlawful assembly and sedition
==Jun.07 > The Paterson textile strikers hold a pageant in Madison Square Garden, organized by John Reed - the show gains popular acclaim, but no contributions
==Jul.28 > The Paterson textile strike has fizzled - ~the IWW is temporarily near collapse; its influence in the northeast evaporates

Far Right.
==Feb.27 > Theodore Roosevelt coins the phrase “lunatic fringe”

==Feb.28 > The House Pujo Committee reports on banking practices, exposing the ‘money trust’ that controls American financial activity - ~renewed anti-trust sentiment

Drugs and Alcohol.Law.
==Mar.01 > The Webb-Kenyon Interstate Liquor Act: Congress prohibits shipping liquor into dry states, over Taft’s veto - the first nationwide prohibition victory

==Mar.01 > Congress authorizes the ICC to investigate the physical valuation of railroads as a basis for establishing rates

==Mar.03 > The first Alaskan legislature opens in Juneau

==Mar.03 > A suffragette march in Washington, DC, is attacked by onlookers, while police stand by - Secretary of War Stimson orders troops from Fort Myer to restore order

==Mar.04 > Woodrow Wilson is inaugurated as President, backed by a strongly Democratic House - William Jennings Bryan becomes Secretary of State, McAdoo heads the Treasury - in the inaugural parade, Lt. George Patton rides a horse and 18-year-old J. Edgar Hoover leads his high school drill team - Sam Rayburn is sworn in as a US Congressman, serving in the House until 1961

==Mar.04 > The Labor Department splits from the Commerce Department

==Mar.08 > The Internal Revenue Service begins operation

Latin American Relations.
==Mar.12 > Wilson releases his first formal statement on Latin American policy, proclaiming that the US will aid democracy and oppose dictatorships

==Mar.15 > Woodrow Wilson begins the first regular presidential press conferences

==Mar.15 > The city of Cleveland establishes the first small claims court

East Asian Relations.
==Mar.18 > Wilson denounces a proposed international loan to China as a threat to Chinese independence, ending Taft’s ‘Dollar Diplomacy’ in the Far East - American bankers withdraw from the loan the next day

==Mar.31 > Financier J. P. Morgan dies in Rome at the age of 75, leaving an estate of a mere $120 million

Pacific Coast.Ethnic.East Asian Relations.
Anti-Japanese legislation in California again provokes a war scare:
==Mar.--- > Anti-Japanese legislation is introduced in the California assembly, with bipartisan support
==Apr.09 > President Wilson tells California Democratic leaders that he doesn’t mind their passing anti-Japanese laws, so long as they do it in a way that doesn’t offend Japan, despite warnings from Japanese and American diplomats
==mid.Apr > Furious Japanese public response to the anti-Japanese laws pending in California - ~sharp Japanese-American crisis to late May
==Apr.21 > Abandoning more cautious measures, the California Senate pursues a blatantly anti-Japanese land law - the crisis with Japan is sharpening
==Apr.22 > Wilson publicly appeals to California to tone down its proposed anti-Japanese law and sends Secretary Bryan to negotiate, without success
==May.03 > The California legislature passes the Webb Alien Land-Holding Bill, excluding Japanese immigrants from owning land - on May.05, Governor Hiram Johnson proclaims “We have prevented the Japanese from driving the root of their civilization deep into Californian soil.”
==May.09 > In very strong language, Japan formally protests the California land law
==May.14 > Admiral Fiske warns that a war with Japan is “not only possible, but even probable.”
==May.16 > Proposals to move US warships from the Yangtze to Philippines are blocked by Wilson - ~the US-Japanese crisis eases
==May.19 > The anti-Japanese land measure is signed into law in California

==Apr.07 > German Ambassador Bernstorff writes Berlin that German-Americans aren’t amenable to German political influence and predicts that within fifty years they’ll “disappear...through absorption” as a distinct ethnic group

Tariff reform is underway:
==Apr.07 > Congress convenes in a special session to consider tariff reform
==Apr.22 > The House opens debate on tariff reform
==May.08 > The House overwhelmingly passes tariff reform, with a provision for enacting income tax - ~business interests are soon aggressively lobbying the Senate
==May.26 > Wilson blasts lobbyists for seeking to sabotage tariff reform - ~in the subsequent investigation, Senators are compelled for the first time to publicly reveal their financial holdings     (see Oct.03)

==Apr.08 > Wilson delivers the ‘State of the Union’ address in person to Congress; the first president to do so since 1801

==Apr.11 > Postmaster General Burleson urges the segregation of federal employees: segregation is soon underway and those who object are discharged - ~the process is eventually halted by protests from the North and the Midwest

==Apr.24 > Secretary of State Bryan internationally submits conciliation (‘cooling off’) treaties to avert wars - the US signs 29 such treaties before WWI, including ones with Britain, France, and Italy - Germany refuses to sign

==spring > Bryan is replacing experienced State Department personnel and diplomats with Democratic Party hacks

The young Walter Lippmann

==spring > Walter Lippmann publishes his first book - the progressive, iconoclastic A Preface to Politics - condemning moral systems and showing a strong Freudian influence

East Asian Relations.
==May.02 > America becomes the first power to extend full diplomatic recognition to the Chinese Republic

Latin American Relations.
==May.17 > Despite pressure from business interests, Wilson announces he will refuse to recognize the Huerta regime in Mexico and will deal with it only “on the basis of the fact of its existence” - ~he says privately “I will not recognize a government of butchers.”

==May.31 > The 17th Amendment mandates the popular election of Senators, removing this function from the state legislatures

Banking reform is underway:
==May-Jun > Proposals for banking reform seriously divide conservative and progressive Democrats
==Jun.11 > Wilson’s progressive adviser Brandeis convinces the President that the government must control the banking system and the currency
==Jun.23 > Woodrow Wilson presents his proposals for banking and currency reform to a joint session of Congress - ~he soon faces a revolt from Southern populists
==Jun.26 > The banking and currency reform bill is introduced in the House
==Sep.18 > The House passes the Glass Bill for banking reform after concessions are made to Southern radicals   (see Dec.19)

==Jun.02 > The US Department of Labor mediates its first strike settlement

Pacific Possessions.
==Jun.11-15 > The fall of Bud Bagsak on Jolo ends the Moro revolts in the Philippines

Latin American Relations.
==Jun.16 > President Wilson approves the draft Bryan-Chamorro Treaty, giving the US the right to intervene in Nicaraguan affairs, despite strong opposition from Democrats and from Central America

Latin American Relations.
The fall of US Ambassador to Mexico Henry Lane Wilson:
==Jun.18 > In a blistering report, special envoy Hale charges that Ambassador Henry Lane Wilson assisted Huerta’s coup in Mexico - President Wilson definitely decides against  recognizing the regime
==late.Jul > Henry Lane Wilson meets Woodrow Wilson, and proposes a full-scale American invasion of Mexico to restore peace - President Wilson is unimpressed
==mid.Aug > Henry Lane Wilson is sacked as Ambassador to Mexico

==Jun.23 > Wilson hedges on exempting unions from antitrust suits

==Jun.--- > Massachusetts passes a strong child labor reform law, decreeing an eight-hour day for workers under sixteen

==Jul.01-05 > Gettysburg veterans hold their 50th anniversary reunion

==Jul.17 > The release of the film A Noise from the Deep, in which Mabel Normand delivers the first recorded pie-in-the-face to Fatty Arbuckle

==Jul.--- > Wilson refuses to appoint a commission on race relations to avoid offending Southerners

==summer > Army Chief of Staff Leonard Wood starts two military instruction camps for college student volunteers - ~the origins of the preparedness movement

==summer > The US Navy completes Plan Black for a war with Germany, envisioning an attempt to invade the Caribbean

Pacific Coast.Labor.Far Left.
==Aug.03 > Police provoke a bloody migrant farmworkers’ riot in Wheatland - ~California officials launch a severe crackdown on the IWW

==Aug.12 > Led by Alfred E. Smith, the Tammany controlled New York legislature votes to impeach Governor Sulzer

Latin American Relations.
Wilson’s Mexican policy toughens:
==Aug.04-26 > The American special envoy Lind fails to reach an agreement with the Huerta regime in Mexico
==Aug.27 > Speaking before Congress, Wilson proclaims a policy of “watchful waiting” on Mexico, and cuts off all arms sales to Huerta as well as the rebels
==Oct.10 > Reacting to Huerta’s suppression of the Mexican Congress, Wilson discusses with Colonel House the possibility of blockading or invading Mexico
==Oct.21 > British Foreign Secretary Grey recognizes special US interests in Mexico - ~general international support for Wilson’s hard-line policies towards Huerta
==Oct.27 > Grey agrees that Britain will follow America’s lead on Mexican policies
==Nov.01 > Wilson demands that Huerta immediately resign, virtually threatening intervention - ~after the threat is publicized, Huerta pledges to stay in office until Mexico is pacified 

==Aug-Dec > Henry Ford introduces the moving assembly line

The opening stages of the bitter southern Colorado coal miners’ strike:
==Sep.23 > A miners’ strike breaks out in the southern Colorado coal fields
==Oct.17 > Mine guards fire 600 rounds into a strikers’ camp at Forbes - ~rising violence in southern Colorado - ~coal companies are sweeping strikers’ camps with searchlights
==Oct.28 > After intense pressure from coal operators, Governor Ammons orders the National Guard into south Colorado, though many of the Guardsmen are mine guards
==Nov.26 > The Colorado National Guard is authorized to protect strikebreakers
==Jan.12 > Labor activist Mother Jones returns to south Colorado, and is imprisoned in a hospital until Mar.16 - widespread public indignation
==Jan.22 > General Chase leads Colorado National Guardsmen in attacking a march by pro-union women
==Mar.11 > Colorado militiamen tear down a strikers’ camp at Forbes - ~the discipline of the National Guard is disintegrating
==Mar.23-Apr.15 > The National Guard imprisons Mother Jones without charges in a cellar  (see also Apr.20.1914)

==Sep.--- > Wilson endorses segregation in government jobs

==Oct.03 > Wilson signs the Underwood-Simmons Act, cutting the tariff -  graduated income tax is established as a major source of federal revenue - the first major tariff reduction since the Civil War and Wilson’s first significant reform

Pacific Possessions.
==Oct.06 > Governor Harrison publicly pledges that America will eventually grant independence to the Philippines

==Oct.07 > The head of the IRS in Georgia announces “There are no government positions for Negroes in the South.  A Negro’s place is in the cornfield.” - ~widespread firings of Southern black federal employees

==Oct.17 > Reformist New York Governor Sulzer is removed from office after defying political boss Murphy, provoking a powerful anti-Tammany reaction to 1915

Latin American Relations.
==Oct.27 > Speaking at Mobile, Wilson looks forward to a time when Latin America is free from the grip of foreign capitalists, and pledges that the US won’t meddle in regional affairs on the basis of the Monroe Doctrine

==fall > Economic downturn in America to 1914

Pacific Coast.Urban.
==Nov.05 > Water begins flowing through the Owens River Aqueduct to the San Fernando Valley:  Superintendent Mulholland shouts to spectators “There it is - Take it!” - ~the rapid growth of Los Angeles begins

European Relations.
==Nov.13 > Informal talks between Woodrow Wilson and British envoy Tyrrell on Mexico and other issues - Anglo-American relations improve

Drugs and Alcohol.Law.
==mid.Nov > The Anti-Saloon League’s Jubilee Convention in Columbus, Ohio, abandons the drive for state prohibition laws and demands a constitutional amendment - the National Temperance Council is established to coordinate the rising prohibition drive

Drugs and Alcohol.
==Dec.05 > A Philadelphia medical conference reports that the street use of heroin has become widespread

Latin American Relations.
Theodore Roosevelt’s travels in South America:
==Dec.10 > Roosevelt fishes for piranha in Paraguay, finding them tasty
==Dec.12 to Feb.1914 > Roosevelt travels through the interior of southern Brazil
==Feb.27 > Roosevelt and Rondón descend the unexplored River of Doubt (later renamed the Rio Roosevelt) in Brazil - within a couple weeks, their situation is grave
==Apr.04 > Roosevelt injures himself, develops a high fever, and comes close to death
==Apr.26 > The exhausted Roosevelt-Rondón expedition completes its journey - Roosevelt never entirely recovers from the ordeal

==Dec.19 > The Senate passes Wilson’s banking reform bill, despite bitter opposition from conservatives
==Dec.23 > Wilson signs the Glass-Owen Act, establishing the Federal Reserve System: increased American financial stability - pooled reserves, sound elastic currency, public regulation, and regional banking

==Dec.29 > After arriving “in a place called Hollywood”, Cecil B. DeMille begins shooting the first feature-length film made there (The Squaw Man) - about this time, the town of Hollywood formally adopts its name

==Dec.--- > In his first report to Congress, Navy Secretary Daniels proposes that all naval personnel be taught English, arithmetic and religion

==1913 > America has spent less than $1/2 million on military aviation since 1908, 1/50 the amount of France or Germany

==1913 > In United States v Kennerley, New York Federal district judge Learned Hand critiques the prevailing basis for obscenity laws as far too restrictive of free expression

==1913 > New York enacts a Public Health Law mandating sweeping reforms - ~it becomes the basis for most state public health laws

==1913 > Beard’s Economic Interpretation of the Constitution suggests that the United States was set up as an oligarchy

==1913 > Women get the vote in Illinois (for presidential elections) and in Alaska

==1913 > America has 40% of world industrial production, exceeding Britain, France, and Germany combined

==1913 > B’nai B’rith establishes the Anti-Defamation League

Popular Culture.
==1913 > Debts force the closure of Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West Show

January-June, 1914

==Jan.05 > After labor unrest, Ford Motor Company announces a wage jump from $2.40 for nine hours to $5 for eight hours, with profit-sharing

==Jan.13 > James Curley is first elected Mayor of Boston - ~aggressive ethnic politics and cultural conservatism in Boston to the 1940’s

==Jan.20 > Wilson proposes moderate antitrust legislation to a joint session of Congress, announcing that “the antagonism between business and government is over.” - ~the administration is loosing its reform impulse due to the worsening economic situation - increasingly friendly overtures to business

==Jan.24 > Collier’s magazine declares that the previous ten years have been “the period of the greatest ethical advance made by this nation in any decade.”

==Jan.26 > A. Mitchell Palmer introduces a child labor bill in the House - President Wilson fails to support it

Latin American Relations.
==Feb.03 > Wilson revokes the arms embargo on Mexico to aid Carranza against Huerta

==Feb.04 > The House passes Burnett Bill to restrict immigration

Margaret Sanger

Far Left.
==Mar.--- > Congress votes to deny entry visas to foreign socialists and anarchists
==Mar.--- > Socialist leader Eugene Debs describes Jesus as “the master proletarian revolutionist and sower of the social whirlwind.”
==Mar-Oct. > Socialist birth control activist Margaret Sanger publishes the newspaper Woman Rebel under the masthead ‘No Gods No Masters’ - its issues are repeatedly suppressed by the Post Office

==Apr.04 > The unemployed riot in Union Square in New York City

Latin American Relations.
==Apr.06 > The Thompson-Urrutia Treaty (or Treaty of Bogota) is signed: America expresses regret to Colombia for the Panamanian Revolution and pledges $25 million compensation - Theodore Roosevelt is infuriated; the treaty is blocked in US Senate by Roosevelt’s friend Henry Cabot Lodge and is not ratified till 1921

Latin American Relations.
The US crisis with the Huerta regime in Mexico suddenly intensifies:
==Apr.09 > The Tampico Incident: several US sailors are briefly arrested by Mexican Federal troops - despite a prompt apology, US Admiral Mayo delivers an ultimatum demanding a special Mexican salute to the American flag - ~the Huerta regime refuses
==Apr.14 > President Wilson orders the US Atlantic fleet to Mexico - Huerta is  delighted at the American overreaction
==Apr.15 > Virtually unanimous Senate support for Wilson’s hard line against Huerta - Senator Borah exults: “If the flag of the United States is ever run up in Mexico, it will never come down.  This is the beginning of the march of the United States to the Panama Canal!”
==Apr.20 > After the US government learns that a munitions ship is on its way to Veracruz, the Atlantic Fleet is ordered to proceed there immediately - Wilson asks a joint session of Congress for authorization to use armed force against Mexico; despite a standing ovation, the resolution is delayed in the Senate by Lodge and Root    (see Apr.21)

==Apr.15 > The New York is commissioned; the first American battleship with 14-inch guns

==Apr.16 > The Second Coxey’s Army is formed in Ohio by the unemployed, in imitation of the Coxey’s Army of 1894

The Ludlow Massacre and its aftermath:
==Apr.20 > The Ludlow Massacre: Colorado National Guardsmen spend all day machine-gunning a strikers’ camp and then burn it down - 21 strikers and family members are killed
==Apr.21 > Enraged miners openly revolt and seize the south Colorado coal fields: widespread fighting to May.01 - ~extensive protests against the Ludlow Massacre
==Apr.28 > President Wilson reluctantly orders federal troops into Colorado
==May.01 > Federal troops arrive in southern Colorado and quickly restore order - the Colorado National Guard is ordered out of the area

Latin American Relations.
US intervention in Mexico:
==Apr.21 > US forces land at Veracruz, securing the city by Apr 22 - bafflement in the US and abroad - ~furious response throughout Latin America - Huerta decrees an amnesty and urges all rebels to join in resisting American aggression - anti-US rioting in Mexico
==Apr.22 > The US Senate belatedly authorizes the use of force against Mexico - Huerta’s regime breaks relations with the US
==Apr.24 > Secretary of War Garrison pushes for an immediate march on Mexico City - Wilson authorizes the mobilization of the US Army
==Apr.25 > Argentina, Brazil and Chile offer to mediate the crisis
==Apr.29 > Wilson comments on the Mexican situation: “We have been in a blind alley for so long that I am longing for an exit.”
==May.11 > Speaking at the New York funeral of US forces killed at Veracruz, Wilson says “We have gone down to Mexico to serve mankind...”

==Apr.25 > Congress provides for raising volunteer forces in the event of war

==May.08-15 > Paramount Pictures is formed

Colonel Edward M. House

European Relations.
==May.15-Jul.29 > The House mission to Europe: President Wilson’s adviser unsuccessfully attempts to ease tensions among the powers on the eve of WWI

==May.--- > Wilson blocks a rural credits bill, objecting to government aid to farmers

==May.--- > The pioneering public relations expert Ivy Lee is hired by the Rockefellers to refurbish their image after the Ludlow Massacre - ~the beginnings of organized corporate public relations

Military.Drugs and Alcohol.
==Jun.01 > The use of alcohol is prohibited in the US Navy; grog is replaced with Welch’s Grape Juice - naval personnel are not enthused

==Jun.05 > The House passes the Federal Trade Commission and Clayton Anti-Trust Bills

==Jun.08 > The Shreveport Rate Case: the Supreme Court sustains the ICC’s right to regulate railroad rates

==Jun.15 > Wilson’s appointees to the Federal Reserve Board are sent to the Senate, where they are vigorously attacked by progressives

European Relations.Politics.
==Jun.15 > Wilson signs a bill levying tolls on American shipping in the Panama Canal after a hard fight in the Senate - strains with Britain are eased

==Jun.17 > The last pole of the transcontinental telephone line is placed on the Nevada-Utah state line

==1914 > ~America is no longer a debtor nation

==1914 > The last bodies of Union soldiers from the Civil War are located and buried

==1914 > Women get the vote in Nevada and Montana

==1914 > The price of a Model T Ford falls below $500, as annual sales rise to 248,000 - Ford is producing more cars than all other American auto-makers combined

==1914 > The number of American newspapers peaks out at 15,000

==1914 > The Federal government begins pollution surveys of streams and harbors

Popular Culture.
==1914 > Edgar Rice Burroughs publishes Tarzan of the Apes


 United States, 1904-1914: Introduction   ///   (1)  The Height of the Roosevelt Era, 1904-1906

(2)  Economic Turmoil, 1907-1908   ///   (3)  The Fall of the Old Guard, 1909-1910

(4)  The High Tide of the Progressive Era, 1911-1912   /// Biographies & Glossary