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On This Day: May 18

1822 - First Lady Maria Barstow Born

On this date Maria Quarles Barstow was born in Salem, Massachusetts. Her family was among the first wave of Yankee settlers in Wisconsin, relocating from Massachusetts to Southport (now Kenosha) on Lake Michigan. She married William Augustus Barstow in April 1844, in Prairieville, Racine County. William Barstow was elected governor in 1853 and served one term. He was elected and sworn in for a second term in 1856 but was found guilty of election fraud and became the first governor in U.S. history to be deposed. Following this humiliation, William Barstow lived in obscurity until he died and was buried near his parents in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1863. Maria remained in the Cleveland area until her death on December 27, 1916 in Lima, Ohio. [Source: First Ladies of Wisconsin - The Governors' Wives by Nancy G. Williams]

1863 - (Civil War) Siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi, Begins

After nearly three weeks spent encircling Vicksburg, Mississippi, Union forces had bottled up their enemy inside the city and prepared to attack it. Seventeen different Wisconsin regiments were involved in the assault that began the next day (8th, 11th, 12th, 14th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 20th, 23rd, 25th, 27th, 29th and 33rd Wisconsin Infantry regiments and the 1st, 6th and 12th Wisconsin Light Artillery batteries as well as the 2nd Wisconsin Cavalry).

1964 - Milwaukee Students Participate in First School Boycott

On this date, the 10th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, students from Milwaukee schools participated in the first boycott of the city's public schools, a critical moment in civil rights and desegration movements in Wisconsin. Two months earlier, in March 1964, the NAACP, CORE, and other civil rights organizations formed MUSIC -- the Milwaukee United School Integration Committee. Its purpose was to implement mass action to highlight the issue of educational inequality. For two years, sit-ins, picketing, prayer vigils, marches, and boycotts had raised public awareness about segregation but failed to move the school board to action. In December of 1965, Wisconsin civil rights activist and attorney Lloyd Barbee filed a formal desegregation suit in federal court on behalf of 41 black and white children, eventually decided in their favor in 1976. [Source: Rethinking Schools].

1964 - Drinking on Sunday Approved in Beloit

On this date the Beloit City Council unanimously approved Sunday sales of alcohol by bowling alleys and restaurants. Bars and packaged good stores were still banned from selling any alcohol on Sundays. [Source: Janesville Gazette]