Today in Southern History: The TVA

18 May 1933  

On this date in 1933…

The Tennessee Valley Authority was established to build hydro-electric stations at dams in the South for rural electrification and economic development when U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the Tennessee Valley Act.

Other Years:

  • 1798 – Benjamin Stoddert of Maryland was appointed the first Secretary of the U.S. Navy.
  • 1839 – General Alexander Macomb announces the peace terms agreed to with the Seminoles. The Seminoles are able to remain in Florida, but only near Lake Okeechobee.
  • 1863 – The Siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi began.
  • 1896 – The Supreme Court ruled in Plessy v. Fergusonthat separate-but-equal facilities were sufficient to satisfy the Fourteenth Amendment which guaranteed political, not social equality.
  • 1902 – A tornado killed more than 230 people and wiped out Goliad, Texas.
  • 1917 – The U.S. Congress passed the Selective Service act, which drafted soldiers to fight in World War I.
  • 1953 – Jacqueline Cochran of Muscogee, Florida became the first woman to fly faster than the speed of sound, piloting an F-86 Sabrejet an average speed of 652.337 miles-per-hour.
  • 1955 – Educator and political leader Mary McLeod Bethune died in Daytona Beach, Florida.

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