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

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June 23 - 26, 1848
The people of Paris rise in insurrection. The revolt is a response to a series of reactionary actions by the “Party of Order”, the dominant faction in the bourgeois government. On June 21, the “Party of Order” shuts down the National Workshops, initially created to provide work for unemployed workers. On June 23, 170,000 workers come out into the streets of Paris in protest and begin erecting barricades.
The government brings in General Cavaignac to put down the uprising with an army of 20,000 to 30,000 soldiers. His forces are unable at first to prevail against the resistance of the poorly armed but determined workers, but Cavaignac brings in another 100,000 soldiers, and with this huge armed force of some 125,000 soldiers, he finally crushes the uprising by June 26.

Karl Marx writes: “The Paris proletariat was forced into the June insurrection by the bourgeoisie. This sufficed to mark its doom. ... The workers were left no choice; they had to starve or let fly....They answered on June 22 with the tremendous insurrection in which the first great battle was fought between the two classes that split modern society....
It is well known how the workers, with unexampled bravery and ingenuity, without leaders, without a common plan, without means and, for the most part, lacking weapons, held in check for five days the army, the Mobile Guard, the Paris National Guard, and the National Guard that streamed in from the provinces. It is well known how the bourgeoisie compensated itself for the mortal anguish it suffered by unheard-of brutality, massacring over 3000 prisoners.”
Related Topics: Revolutions of 1848-49
June 23, 1889  
Birth of Anna Akhmatova, Russian poet (1889-1966).
Related Topics: Poets
June 23, 1894
Birth of Alfred Kinsey (1894-1956), American biologist and sex researcher.
Related Topics: Sexual BehaviourSexuality
June 23, 1985  
Air India bombing. An Air India flight from Montreal to Delhi is blown up over the Atlantic by a bomb planted on the plane. All 329 people on board die.
Related Topics: BombingTerrorism

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For more information about people and events in Seeds of Fire, explore these pages: