1930 – Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith are lynched

On the evening of August 6, 1930, Thomas Shipp, Abram Smith and James Cameron were arrested for the murder of one Claude Deeter and the rape of his girlfriend, Mary Ball, in Marion, Indiana. Shipp, Smith and Cameron were all black, while Deeter and Ball were white.

Before dawn the next day, a large crowd gathered. Breaking into the cells where they were held, they dragged the three men outside, where Shipp and Smith were lynched (Cameron was able to flee after some members of the mob pronounced him innocent). A photographer named Lawrence Beitler took a photograph of the scene, including two dead men still hanging from their nooses, which sold thousands of copies and became an iconic image of racial injustice.

Ball later stated that she had not been raped by anyone; Cameron stated that Shipp and Smith were guilty of Deeter’s murder.

Referenced in:

Strange Fruit — Billie Holiday

1930 – Amy Johnson flies from England to Darwin

Amy Johnson became famous the world over after she became the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia. Flying her de Havilland Gipsy Moth (which she had named ‘Jason’), she departed from Croydon, near London, on May 5, 1930 and reached Darwin, in Australia’s Northern Territory, on May 24, a flight of some 11,000 miles (or 18,000 km). She was honoured with the Harmon Trophy, a CBE, the No. 1 civil pilot’s licence under Australia’s 1921 Air Navigation Regulations and a street in Darwin that still bears her name today, all for this achievement.

Johnson later died under disputed circumstances during World War Two – it is believed that she may have been on a mission for British intelligence, but the truth of the matter has never been revealed.

Referenced in:

Flying Sorcery — Al Stewart
A Lone Girl Flier — Bob Molyneux
Just Plain Johnnie — Bob Molyneux
Amy, Wonderful Amy — Harry Bidgood
Johnnie, Our Aeroplane Girl — Jack Lumsdaine

1930 – Constantinople is officially renamed Istanbul

Although the name had been in use informally since 1453, in most contexts Istanbul was still Constantinople to non-Turks, and Kostantiniyye in most government contexts. After the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the formation of the modern Turkish Republic in 1923, the old name was gradually phased out.

The changeover was formalised on March 28, 1930, when the Turkish Postal Service Law came into force. All foreigners were requested to stop using the old names of Istanbul and various other Turkish locations. This was enforced by the post office’s refusal to deliver mail addressed to Constantinople, which drove acceptance of the new usage on pragmatic grounds.

Referenced in:

Istanbul Not Constantinople – The Four Lads
Istanbul Not Constantinople – They Might Be Giants