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Leonardo Ponzio in 2016
Leonardo Ponzio

Today in History

December 11

Averroes (d. 1198) · Subramania Bharati (b. 1882) · Big Mama Thornton (b. 1926)

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Eyrewell ground beetle
Eyrewell ground beetle

Today's Featured Article

Benjamin Tillman (1847–1918) was the Democratic Governor of South Carolina from 1890 to 1894 and a United States Senator from 1895 until his death in 1918. A white supremacist who opposed civil rights for blacks, Tillman led a paramilitary group of Red Shirts during South Carolina's violent 1876 election. One of his legacies was South Carolina's 1895 constitution, which disenfranchised most of the black majority and ensured white rule for more than half a century. On the floor of the U.S. Senate, he frequently ridiculed blacks, and boasted of having helped to kill them during the 1876 campaign. He was known as "Pitchfork Ben" after he threatened to use a pitchfork to prod that "bag of beef", President Grover Cleveland. He was the primary sponsor of the Tillman Act (1907), the first federal campaign finance reform law, which banned corporate contributions in federal political campaigns. (Full article...)