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Today In Charleston History: July 9

1786
Martha Laurens Ramsay

Martha Laurens Ramsay

Dr. David Ramsay returned to Charlestown from New York (serving a term in Congress) and took over the treatment of the ailing Henry Laurens. It was during this time he first met Martha Laurens whom he soon married. 

1781-American Revolution.  

The Charlestown patriots exiled in St. Augustine received word of the prisoner exchange negotiated between Cornwallis and Gen. Greene.

1793

The murder of Stephen Saint Johns by his slave, Titus, sent shockwaves through the white community. Titus was executed in Charleston for that murder.

1919
Lt. James Reese Europe

Lt. James Reese Europe

After the murder of their director, James Reese Europe, the Hellfighter’s Band was reorganized under the leadership of Gene Mikell. Mikell, a native of Charleston and former director of the Jenkins Orphanage Band, had served as the assistant director of the Hellfighters Band during World War I across Europe. James Europe had been murdered in a backstage argument in Boston by Hellfighter’s drummer, Herbert Wright, also a former member of the Jenkins Orphanage Band.

As “a tribute to the late leader of this band” the Hellfighters played a successful concert at the Manhattan Casino and served as the headliner at one last Carnegie Hall concert.

Listen to the music of the Hellfighters Band:

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