1865Congress Passed Thirteenth Amendment
After being passed by the Senate the previous year, the House passed the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution which abolished slavery and involuntary servitude. It was then given to the states for ratification. It took until December of that year to get the necessary 3/4 approval from the states.

1945 Eddie Slovik Executed
  • Eddie Slovik was a United States Army soldier during WWII. He told his Captain that he was afraid to serve in a front line rifle unit and asked to be moved to a rear unit. When his Captain refused, Slovik ran away. Later, he returned and handed this note to a cook:
I, Pvt. Eddie D. Slovik, 36896415, confess to the desertion of the United States Army. At the time of my desertion we were in Albuff [Elbeuf] in France. I came to Albuff as a replacement. They were shelling the town and we were told to dig in for the night. The following morning they were shelling us again. I was so scared, nerves and trembling, that at the time the other replacements moved out, I couldn’t move. I stayed there in my fox hole till it was quiet and I was able to move. I then walked into town. Not seeing any of our troops, so I stayed over night at a French hospital. The next morning I turned myself over to the Canadian Provost Corp. After being with them six weeks I was turned over to American M.P. They turned me loose. I told my commanding officer my story. I said that if I had to go out there again I'd run away. He said there was nothing he could do for me so I ran away again AND I'LL RUN AWAY AGAIN IF I HAVE TO GO OUT THERE.
— Signed Pvt. Eddie D. Slovik A.S.N. 36896415

Slovik was urged to return to his unit but he refused. He was tried in France under the Articles of War, the precursor to the Uniform Code of Military Justice which took effect in 1951. For his millitary crime of desertion, Slovik was executed by firing squad. Slovik was the last American Soldier executed for desertion since the Civil War.

1970 Grateful Dead Arrested
During Carnival Season, members of the group, its crew and several friends were arrested on drug charges at a French Quarter Hotel in New Orleans. The band's managernegotiated a bail of $37,500 — the band’s profit for the previous night's concert— for the entire crew, who spent eight hours in jail. However, the Dead didn’t leave town upon their release. They not only played a second night but added a third show, which raised money for both their legal defense and others bands who found themselves in a similar situation. Night months later, the band released "Truckin'" which memorialized the incident forever in the lyrics of "Busted, down on Bourbon Street / Set up, like a bowlin’ pin / Knocked down, it gets to wearin’ thin / They just won’t let you be, no.” In 1977, the Library of Congress declared "Truckin'" to be a national treasure.

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