Michael Thomas Barry's blog

Frank Sinatra Jr. speaks with his father after being kidnapped - 1963
Dec 10, 2013, - 0 Comments

sinatra jr

Frank Sinatra Jr.

by Michael Thomas Barry

On December 10, 1963, Frank Sinatra Jr., who was kidnapped in Lake Tahoe, California, two days earlier is allowed to talk to his father briefly. The 19-year-old man, who was trying to follow in his father's footsteps by pursuing a singing career, was abducted at gunpoint from his hotel room at Harrah's Casino and taken to Canoga Park. After the brief conversation between father and son, the kidnappers demanded a ransom of $240,000.

Well-Known activist shoots and kills Philadelphia police officer - 1981
Dec 9, 2013, - 0 Comments


Mumia Abu-Jamal

by Michael Thomas Barry

On December 9, 1981, Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner is found dead on the street with Mumia Abu-Jamal, a well-known activist and freelance journalist, lying severely wounded nearby. In 1982, Abu-Jamal was tried for and convicted of Faulkner's murder, but because of the murky circumstances surrounding the incident and a trial that many believe was unfair, activists have since protested Abu-Jamal's imprisonment.

Colin Ferguson opens fire on commuter train- 1992
Dec 7, 2013, - 0 Comments


by Michael Thomas Barry

On December 7, 1992, Colin Ferguson opens fire on a Long Island Rail Road commuter train from New York City, killing 6 and injuring 19. Other train passengers stopped the perpetrator by tackling and holding him down. Ferguson later attributed the shooting spree to his deep-seated hatred of white people.

The Reno Brother's Gang -1868
Dec 6, 2013, - 0 Comments

reno gang

The Reno Bros. Gang

by Michael Thomas Barry

On December 6, 1868, a guard, who had been shot by brothers Frank, William, and Simeon Reno during a train robbery in May, died of his wounds. His death so infuriated the public that a group of vigilantes yanked the three brothers from their Indiana jail cell five days later and hanged them. Although the Reno gang had a short reign of terror, they are credited with pulling off the first train robbery in American history and are believed to be the inspiration for criminal copycats like Jesse James and others. 

Boston Belfry Murderer Claims First Victim - 1873
Dec 5, 2013, - 0 Comments


Warren Avenue Baptist Church

by Michael Thomas Barry

On December 5, 1873, Bridget Landregan is found beaten and strangled to death in the Boston suburb of Dorchester. According to witnesses, a man in black clothes and a flowing cape attempted to sexually assault the dead girl before running away. In 1874, a man fitting the same description clubbed another young girl, Mary Sullivan, to death. His third victim, Mary Tynan, was bludgeoned in her bed in 1875. Although she survived for a year after the severe attack, she was never able to identify her attacker. 

Chicago Police kill two members of the Black Panther Party - 1969
Dec 4, 2013, - 0 Comments


Black Panther leader Fred Hampton

by Michael Thomas Barry

On December 4, 1969, Black Panthers Fred Hampton and Mark Clark were gunned down by police in their Chicago, Illinois apartment. About a hundred bullets had been fired in what police described as a fierce gun battle with members of the Black Panther Party. However, ballistics experts later determined that only one of those bullets came from the Panthers' side.

Militant Abolitionist John Brown was executed - 1859
Dec 2, 2013, - 0 Comments


by Michael Thomas Barry

On December 2, 1859, militant abolitionist John Brown was executed on charges of treason, murder, and insurrection. Brown was born in Connecticut in 1800. He first became militant during the mid-1850s, when as a leader of the Free State forces in Kansas he fought pro-slavery settlers. Achieving only moderate success in his fight against slavery in Kansas, Brown settled on a more ambitious plan in 1859.