New York Draft Riot
On July 13, 1863, as the second day of a new military draft lottery in New York City got underway, demonstrations broke out across the city in what began as an organized opposition to the first federally mandated conscription laws in the nation’s history, but soon morphed into a violent uprising against the city’s wealthy elite; its African-American residents; and the very idea of the Civil War itself.
The rioters were overwhelmingly working-class men, primarily ethnic Irish, resenting particularly that wealthier men, who could afford to pay a $300 (equivalent to $5,766 in 2015) commutation fee to hire a substitute, were spared from the draft. The New York City Draft Riots, which would wreak havoc on the city for four days and remain the largest civilian insurrection in American history, exposed the deep racial, economic and social divides that threatened to tear the nation’s largest city apart in the midst of the American Civil War.
U.S. President Abraham Lincoln diverted several regiments of militia and volunteer troops from following up after the Battle of Gettysburg to control the city. The military did not reach the city until after the first day of rioting, when mobs had already ransacked or destroyed numerous public buildings, two Protestant churches, the homes of various abolitionists or sympathizers, many black homes, and the Colored Orphan Asylumat 44th Street and Fifth Avenue, which was burned to the ground. The demographics of the city changed as a result of the riot. So many blacks left Manhattan permanently (many moving to Brooklyn), that by 1865 their population fell below 10,000, the number in 1820.
Hollywood Sign is Born
Live Aid Global Concert for Africa
Live Aid was a dual-venue concert held on 13 July 1985, and an ongoing music-based fundraising initiative. The original event was organised by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise funds for relief of the ongoing Ethiopian famine. Billed as the “global jukebox”, the event was held simultaneously at Wembley Stadium in London, (attended by 72,000 people) and John F. Kennedy Stadium in Philadelphia (attended by about 100,000 people). It was the Woodstock for the 80’s generation.
On the same day, concerts inspired by the initiative happened in other countries, such as the Soviet Union, Japan, Austria, Australiaand West Germany. It was one of the largest-scale satellite link-ups and television broadcasts of all time: an estimated global audience of 1.9 billion, across 150 nations, watched the live broadcast.
The event raised more than $125 million in famine relief for Africa.