The Declaration of Rights – Today In Southern History

12 June 1776  

On this date in 1776…

The Declaration of Rights was adopted unanimously by the Fifth Virginia Convention at Williamsburg, Virginia. Adopted before and separately in case the Declaration of Independence did not pass in the Continental Congress, the Declaration of Rights was Virginia’s act of secession from the British Empire.

Other Years:

  • 1861 – Missouri Governor Claiborne Jackson called for 50,000 volunteers to stop federal troops from illegally taking control of the state. The federal strong-arm tactics used in Missouri eventually led the state government to secede.
  • 1862 – Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart’s cavalry began its famous three-day ride around federal General George McClellan’s army.
  • 1935 – Senator Huey Long of Louisiana spoke continually for 151/2 hours in the U.S. Senate’s longest speech on record with more than 150,000 words.
  • 1944 – The U.S. Congress established the Big Bend National Park in Texas.
  • 1963 – The Mississippi’s NAACP field secretary, 37-year-old Medgar Evers, was murdered outside his home in Jackson, Mississippi. Byron De La Beckwith was tried twice in 1964, both trials resulting in hung juries. Thirty years later, he was convicted of murdering Evers.
  • 1967 – In its Loving v. Virginiadecision, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned laws that banned interracial marriage.

Read: Why Know Southern History?

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