On This Day, March 13, 1519 – Cortez Arrives in Mexico
When the Spanish arrived, normally they would have been captured and sacrificed immediately. That’s how the Aztecs did things. But, in the 1500s, when the Spanish conquistador, Hernan Cortes, entered Aztec territory with a small band of his men, the Aztec misunderstood why they were there. The Aztecs through they were sent by their god, Quetzalcoatl.
Quetzalcoatl, a very important god to the Aztecs, had vowed he would appear when the end of the world was near, to save the Aztec people. The Aztecs always believed the end of the world was near. That’s why they sacrificed so many people. They were trying to keep their gods happy so the god would postpone the end of the world.
The longer the Spanish stayed in the capital city, the more suspicious the Aztec leaders became. The Spanish did not act like gods. They did not attend the sacrifice ceremonies that were given in their honor. The Aztecs decided it was time for the Spanish to leave. They did not want to kill them because they might be gods after all, but the Aztecs wanted them to move along. The Spanish were secretly glad to leave. For some time, they had been wondering how to escape alive.
When the Spanish returned, they were prepared. They brought dogs and horses and weapons and many fighting men. They also had the help of other tribes in the area, who had no idea how cruel Spanish rule would become. The other tribes just wanted to get rid of the awful Aztecs. But it was disease that actually defeated the Aztecs. They had no protection against simple childhood diseases like measles that the Spanish brought with them.
1639 – Harvard University was named for clergyman John Harvard.
1781 – Sir William Herschel discovered the planet Uranus.
1852 – The New York “Lantern” newspaper published the first “Uncle Sam cartoon”. It was drawn by Frank Henry Bellew.
1861 – Jefferson Davis signed a bill authorizing slaves to be used as soldiers for the Confederacy.
1868 – The U.S. Senate began the impeachment trial of President Andrew Johnson.
1901 – Andrew Carnegie announced that he was retiring from business and that he would spend the rest of his days giving away his fortune. His net worth was estimated at $300 million.
1902 – In Poland, schools were shut down across the country when students refused to sing the Russian hymn “God Protect the Czar.”
1908 – The people of Jerusalem saw an automobile for the first time. The owner was Charles Glidden of Boston.
1911 – The U.S. Supreme Court approved corporate tax law.
1918 – Women were scheduled to march in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New York due to a shortage of men due to wartime.
1925 – A law in Tennessee prohibited the teaching of evolution.
1930 – It was announced that the planet Pluto had been discovered by scientist Clyde Tombaugh at the Lowell Observatory.
1933 – Banks began to re-open after a “holiday” that had been declared by President Roosevelt.
1935 – Three-thousand-year-old archives were found in Jerusalem confirming some biblical history.
1951 – The comic strip “Dennis the Menace“ appeared for the first time in newspapers across the country.
1957 – Jimmy Hoffa was arrested by the FBI on bribery charges.
1970 – Digital Equipment Corp. introduced the PDP-11 minicomputer.
2012 – After 244 years of publication, encyclopedia Britannica announced it would discontinue its print edition.
Source: On-This-Day.com; http://aztecs.mrdonn.org