Seeds of Fire: A People’s Chronology

Recalling events that happened on this day in history.
Memories of struggle, resistance and persistence.

Compiled by Ulli Diemer

January  February  March  April  May  June  July  August  September  October  November  December
1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18  19  20  21  22  23  24  25  26  27  28  29  30  31  

August 4, 1701  
The signing of the Great Peace at Montreal. Forty aboriginal nations sign a peace treaty with New France.
Related Topics: Aboriginal HistoryPeaceTreaties
August 4, 1792  
Birth of Percy Bysshe Shelley, English romantic poet and political radical (1792-1822).
Shelley’s poem Masque of Anarchy, written after the Peterloo Massacre in 1819 (see August 16) calls for non-violent but determined resistance against governments that attempt to suppress freedom. Henry David Thoreau refers to its message in his essay Civil Disobedence, and Gandhi often quotes from it when he speaks at mass rallies during the campaign for Indian independence:

Let a vast assembly be,
And with great solemnity
Declare with measured words, that ye
Are, as God has made ye, free!
Rise like Lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number,
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you–
Ye are many – they are few
Related Topics: Poets
August 4, 1912
Birth of Raoul Wallenberg, Swedish humanitarian who worked to rescue Jews from the Holocaust.
Related Topics: Holocaust
August 4, 1914  
Betraying everything that it had said it stood for, the German Social Democratic Party votes for war credits. On the same day the French and Belgian Socialist parties also issue decrees declaring support of their own governments in the war that broke out on August 1.
August 4, 1964  
The ‘Gulf of Tonkin incident’, a fabricated ‘attack’ on a U.S. ship by supposed Vietnamese torpedo boats. The U.S. government uses the invented ‘incident’ to push a resolution through Congress allowing the President to intervene in any southeast Asian country he ‘believes’ is threatened by communism. Years later, it is revealed that the alleged attack never happened.
Related Topics: Fabrication of EvidenceHoaxesLyingVietnam War

January  February  March  April  May  June  July  August  September  October  November  December
1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18  19  20  21  22  23  24  25  26  27  28  29  30  31  
For more information about people and events in Seeds of Fire, explore these pages: