1892 – Ellis Island Inspection Station opens

Ellis Island is a small island in Upper New York Bay, near Liberty Island and Jersey City. A natural island, it was greatly expanded with landfill (much of it having come from the tunnels being dug for New York’s subways) to create a larger, flatter area on which to construct the Inspection Station.

From 1892 to 1954, it was the major landing place for immigrants entering the United States of America from Europe. Literally millions of people passed through the Inspection Station (less than 2% of arrivals were rejected) on their way to new lives – most of whom would settle in New Jersey, New York or other nearby states. The first immigrant to pass through Ellis Island was Annie Moore, a 15-year-old girl from Cork, Ireland, who arrived on the ship Nevada on New Year’s Day, 1892. She and her two brothers had come to America to be reunited with their parents.

Referenced in:
An Open Letter to NYC — Beastie Boys

1892 — Haile Selassie I born

Born Tafari Makonnen, Haile Selassie I could trace his descent through the royal house of Ethiopia back the 13th century CE, and beyond that, to legendary claims of being the descendant of King Solomon of Israel and the Queen of Sheba. He ruled Ethiopia from 1916 until 1972 (as Regent until 1930, and as Emperor thereafter) and was one of the most respected statesman in the world – and also venerated as the Messiah by Rastafarians.

He was a staunch opponent of the Axis powers in World War Two, and was famously the first leader to return to his liberated nation after the invaders were repulsed. He led Ethiopia into the League of Nations and later the United Nations, and was a strong proponent of multilateralism and of the prosecution of war crimes.

Referenced in:

Born fe Rebel — Steel Pulse

1892 – Lizzie Borden murders her parents

They say she done all of ’em in.

They say she done it with an axe.

They are, in this case, probably right. Certainly someone murdered Andrew and Abby Borden with an axe, in their own home, when Lizzie was the only other person who could have been in the house at the time. But was she?

At her trial, she was acquitted, largely due to lack of evidence (although her father’s unpopularity in the community may also have been a factor). And there were other reasonably credible suspects (such as the family maid). At this late date, we’ll probably never know.

Referenced in:

Lizzie Borden — Chad Mitchell Trio
She Took An Axe — Flotsam and Jetsam