On This Date In History: Two of the biggest disasters in US history, or perhaps even world history, happened on this date. On this date in 1912 the HMS Titanic struck and iceberg and sank and on this date in 1865 President Lincoln was shot by John Wilkes Booth. Now…if that’s not enough of an oddity for you..how about this? One of President Lincoln’s final acts of office was to form the United States Secret Service on this date in 1865, just hours before his own assassination. The Secret Service was officially commissioned in July of that year but it’s job was not to protect the President. It was formed in an attempt to thwart counterfeiting operations that plagued the Union during and after the Civil War. That is why until 2003 it was under the United States Department of Treasury. Today it falls under the Department of Homeland Security.
Allen Pinkerton’s detective agency was hired by the US government to be the main unit of espionage and counterespionage for the United States during the Civil War and he is credited with helping to spoil an assassination attempt on President Lincoln at the outset of his first term. The Pinkerton’s claim that their founder was the first to organize the nation’s first secret service, but the Secret Service itself was not established until 1865 with its sole purpose to combat counterfeiting. The above symbol adorned his agency and is widely thought to have been the influence for the term “private eye” for private detectives. I believe it was Pinkerton who urged then President-Elect Lincoln to come into Washington under the cover of darkness to avoid potential assassination attempts in 1861. It was at that time that Lincoln grew the beard that we now find so familiar, which also may have been part of his disguise but then decided to keep the beard because he liked it. It was not until the assassination of President McKinley in 1901 that the Secret Service was requested by Congress to provide protection for the President. The Secret Service is part of the Department of Treasury.
The Pinkerton Agency was around until 2003 when it was acquired along with one of its biggest competitors and folded into an organization that became Securitas Security Services USA, Inc., which is now one of the largest security companies in the world.
Weather Bottom Line: Things went pretty much as expected. The only real slam dunk was that the SPC would put out a Tornado Watch for our area and that was the case. There were several tornado warnings in Southern Indiana but as far as I know there were no reported touchdowns. There were several hail reports and also several Severe Thunderstorm Warnings. The low that caused it all is pokey and so look for some shower activity on Tuesday and pretty cool conditions as we will probably be in the low to mid 50’s. We start to come out of the bucket and by Friday we’re up to near 70 and low to mid 70’s on Saturday. The bulk of Thunder Saturday will be pretty good though late Saturday the rain chances go up. Guess is that at this point the rain would be after the fireworks. Let’s hope that holds true. Rain is more likely on Sunday.