The Danbury Baptist Letter – Today In Southern History

1 January 1802 

On this date in 1802…

Thomas Jefferson wrote his letter to the Danbury, Connecticut Baptist Association.  His words, “…the separation of Church and state…” were later taken out of context and used by Federal courts to erroneously forbid religious expression at public activities.  To this date, Jefferson’s letter is the only letter written by a US President that is considered a constitutional amendment.

Other Years:

  • 1862 – The Battle of Murfreesboro, Tennessee continued from December 31.
  • 1863 – Abraham Lincoln officially issued the executive order known as the Emancipation Proclamation and freed no one.
  • 1863 – At the Battle of Galveston, Texas, Confederate General John Magruder recaptured the port and city of Galveston and dispersed the federal blockading fleet. Military historians call the action the first successful cavalry charge upon a naval fleet.
  • 1942 – The Rose Bowl was played in Durham, North Carolina due to the Japanese naval threat after Pearl Harbor. Oregon State beat Duke University 20 to 16.
  • 1953 – County music legend Hank Williams died at the age of 29 in Oak Hill, West Virginia.
  • 1958 – Johnny Cash performed his first live prison concert for a “captive audience” at San Quentin State Prison. Watch now

Read: Why Know Southern History?

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