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The 1968 Project – May

posted: , by Raminta Moore
tags: Library Collections | Recommended Reads | Adults | Seniors | Art & Culture

The 1968 Project aims to highlight some of the historic events of the year. From protests and famous battles to chart-topping popular hits and box office smashing film, 1968 was a huge historical year with reverberations that we still feel today. The 1968 Project looks to grab snippets of these events on a monthly basis and list them here with links for further exploration.

May of 1968 was extremely tumultuous in France. Students in Paris were bringing the country to the brink of revolution and the country witnessed some of the largest general strikes in its history. Information on some of the daily events will be highlighted below. For a quick overview, click here.

May 2nd
Staff Sergeant Roy Benevidez of the U.S. Army’s 5th Special Forces Group was wounded four different times whilst saving the lives of 8 men under heavy gunfire. Benevidez was awarded the medal of honor in 1981.

May 3rd
A group of 500 students from the Sorbonne in Paris protested against the closure of the University of Paris at Nanterre. As police arrived to disperse the students, the first riots of May began.

May 9th
Harold Gray, the creator of the comic strip, Little Orphan Annie passes from cancer.

Mercedes de Acosta, poet, novelist, playwright and former lover of Greta Garbo, passes at the age of 75.

May 10th
The French government orders the state run television station, ORTF to stop televising the student protests. Later that evening, students begin erecting barricades in the Latin Quarter of Paris to keep the police out.

May 11th
The Paris police storm the Latin Quarter to disperse the students. It was this event, that brought the news of the civil unrest to the rest of the world.

May 12th
On this day, pianist Reginald Kenneth Dwight decides to co opt the names of his Bluesology bandmates, saxophonist Elton Dean and vocalist Long John Baldry.

Coretta Scott King, wife of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., leads the National Welfare Rights Organization’s Mother’s Day mobilization. This mobilization leads to protests and sit ins all across the country.

May 15th
The Swimmer, starring Burt Lancaster is released.

May 17th
A group of anti-war protesters enter the selective services offices of Catonsville, Maryland, steal the draft records and destroy them with napalm. This group is later dubbed, the Catonsville Nine.

May 18th
The first Miami Pop Festival is held at horse racing grounds in Hallandale, Florida. Headliners included The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, The Crazy World of Arthur Brown and Blue Cheer.

May 19th
Nigerian troops capture Port Harcourt and surround Biafra. This blockade leads to severe famine in the country.

May 21st
Two million workers walk off their jobs in France, this brought the number of striking workers to close to 8 million. On this day in France, banks closed fearing cash runs and the French stock exchange in Paris does not open. President Charles De Gaulle uses his powers to pardon student protesters.

Members of the Poor People’s Campaign came to Washington, DC and built a camp, named Resurrection City, on 15 acres of the National Mall.

Henry Zbyszynski – Flickr: Resurrection City Washington D.C. 1968

May 23rd
Henry Dumas, an African American poet from Harlem, is shot three times by a New York City Transit officer, killing him instantly. Dumas was only 33 at the time.

May 25th
Negotiations begin between the Prime Minister Georges Pompidou’s government, trade unions and students.

May 27th
The results of the above negotiations become the Grenelle agreements. These agreements would lead to the end of the massive strikes, a 35% increase in minimum wage and an overall 10% wage increase.

May 28th
The Detective, starring Frank Sinatra, is released.

Frank Sinatra and Horace McMahon, The Detective

May 29th
President De Gaulle postpones a meeting with the Council of Ministers and removes all of his personal papers from his office, a sign that a new government could be formed soon.

May 30th
Prime Minister Pompidou suggests that President De Gaulle dissolve the National Assembly, call a new election, and then resign. De Gaulle refuses to resign, but calls for elections on June 23rd. All parties agreed to the election.


Be sure to come back at the end of next month for events from June 1968!

April 1968
March 1968
January & February 1968

Science and Nature Videos Now Available from Videoport and PPL

posted: , by Patti DeLois
tags: Library Collections | Adults | Seniors | Art & Culture

As of June 1, the Library is opening up another section of the Videoport collection–Science and Nature films. This includes documentaries from Nova, National Geographic, IMAX, and PBS’s Nature series, as well as feature films about animals, such as The Bear, The Cave of the Yellow Dog, and The Story of the Weeping Camel.

Between the classics from Videoport and the Library’s latest acquisitions, we have all your favorite scientists and naturalists: David Attenborough, Bill Nye, Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Jane Goodall, John James Audubon. Indulge your sense of wonder at the natural world. Check out our display at the Main Branch, or choose something from our list of Science and Nature Films.

The 1968 Project – April

posted: , by Raminta Moore
tags: Adults | Seniors | Art & Culture

The 1968 Project aims to highlight some of the historic events of the year. From protests and famous battles to chart-topping popular hits and box office smashing film, 1968 was a huge historical year with reverberations that we still feel today. The 1968 Project looks to grab snippets of these events on a monthly basis and list them here with links for further exploration.

April 1
The debut novel from Jeffrey Hudson (aka Michael Crichton), A Case of Need, is published.

The 249th and final episode of The Andy Griffith Show airs on television.

Publicity photo of Andy Griffith and Ron Howard from the television program The Andy Griffith Show. The photo was to remind people when the show would return to the air with new episodes and to be careful driving because it was now school time.

April 3rd
Planet of the Apes and 2001: A Space Odyssey both premier.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivers what is to be his final speech known as, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop.”
We aren’t engaged in any negative protest and in any negative arguments with anybody. We are saying that we are determined to be men. We are determined to be people. We are saying — We are saying that we are God’s children. And that we are God’s children, we don’t have to live like we are forced to live.”

Simon and Garfunkel release their album, Bookends.

April 4th
Dr. King is assassinated on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee.

Sign (1969) pro­mot­ing a holiday on the an­ni­ver­sa­ry of King’s death

April 6th
shootout between Black Panthers and Oakland police results in several arrests and deaths, including 16-year-old Panther Bobby Hutton. 

April 10th
Postponed due to the assassination of Dr. King, the 40th annual Academy Awards ceremony takes place at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. Rod Steiger wins Best Actor for In the Heat of the Night. Best Actor in a Supporting Role goes to George Kennedy for Cool Hand Luke. Katherine Hepburn wins Best Actress for her role in Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner. The award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role goes to Estelle Parsons in Bonnie and Clyde. Mike Nichols wins Best Director for The Graduate. The Best Picture winner for 1968 is In the Heat of the Night.

April 11th
President Johnson signs the 1968 Civil Rights Act.
An act to enforce the constitutional right to vote, to confer jurisdiction upon the district courts of the United States of America to provide injunctive relief against discrimination in public accommodations, to authorize the Attorney General to institute suits to protect constitutional rights in public facilities and public education, to extend the Commission on Civil Rights, to prevent discrimination in federally assisted programs, to establish a Commission on Equal Employment Opportunity, and for other purposes. -long title

April 14th
Off-Broadway at Theater Four, Mart Crowley’s play, The Boys in the Band premiers. Reviewer Clive Barnes calls this play the “finest treatment of homosexuality I have ever seen on stage.” It is one of the first plays to avoid many of the conventional gay stereotypes for a more complex psychological treatment of the play’s various gay characters, brought together for a birthday party.

This is a poster for The Boys in the Band. The poster art copyright is believed to belong to the distributor of the film, the publisher of the film or the graphic artist.

April 16th
Fay Bainter, stage and film actress passes at the age of 74.

Edna Ferber, author, passes at age 82.

April 19th
The Zombies release their album, Odessey and Oracle.

April 20th
Pierre Trudeau is sworn in as Canada’s 15th Prime Minister. Fortyseven years later, his son Justin, becomes Canada’s 23rd Prime Minister.

April 21st
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead wins Best Play at the 22nd Annual Tony Awards.

April 24th
Hundreds of Columbia University students, protesting the Vietnam War, take over several administration offices at the University. The protests shut down the school and are not broken up by the New York Police Department until April 30th.

April 27th
Sly & The Family Stone release their album, Dance to the Music.

Booker T & The MG’s release Doin’ Our Thing.

April 29th
The premier of Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical, is performed on Broadway.

The poster art copyright is believed to belong to Michael Butler, the original producer of the musical or the graphic artist.

Be sure to come back at the end of next month for events from May 1968!

March 1968

January & February 1968

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