The congressman who shot a waiter


Retro pod is sponsored by Tito's vodka. Drink responsibly. Hey History Lovers Mike Rosenwasser with retro pod a show about the past rediscovered in the nineteen fifties. According to the master of all word uses the Oxford English dictionary a new words started to take hold in the English language HANGARY's. It's a combination of the words hungry and angry like so hungry that literally everything in the world makes you angry that word Henry Somewhat describes an incident that took place one hundred years before the word for the emotion even emerged it involves a congressman named Philemon Herbert a first term Democrat from California though he grew up one day eighteen fifty six herber. Uber decided to go to the Willard Hotel in Washington D._C.. For breakfast the late breakfast it was eleven A._M.. Herbert was starving so he ordered and then left to buy a couple of newspapers while he waited when he came back he found that he only been served part of what he had ordered. What was missing has lost a history but anyway he was told that because he had ordered so late the hotel office would have to approve serving a complete breakfast too bad all-day breakfast one thing yet in eighteen fifty six herbert was a muscular and intimidating guy and hunger seemed to push him over the edge? He started screaming swear words in slurs at the Irish waiter who served him Herbert then turned his wrath towards another waiter whose name was Thomas Keating name-calling quickly gave way to violence fish and plates flu blue finally Herbert Grab Keating by the collar produced a gun and shot him in the chest. Herbert fled back then it was normal for lawmakers. Acres to dual enbrel Herbert even continued serving in Congress as charges were pending but even so this incident was seen as over the line the New York Tribune declared quote. There is no excuse for the murder murder in the circumstances of the case. This was just before the start of the civil war intentions in the country were running high for many northerners the case of an Alabama born secessionist killing a working class Irishman Irishman confirm their fears about the violent behavior of southern slavery support. That's according to former Washington Post reporter Guy Hoogly Atta who wrote a book about Pre-civil War Washington the case went to trial and Washington District Attorney Phillip Barton Key the Son of Star spangled banner author Francis Scott Key was tasked with prosecuting Herbert. He was known for being friends with some of Washington's most avid secessionists. Oceanus the evidence was clear cut witnessed after witness described what had happened. He had accepted jury instructions written by the defense without objection and much of the jury Jerry was composed of members of an anti immigrant movement who were likely to excuse the murder of an Irish waiter so herbert was acquitted Herbert left town after his acquittal and went back to California where he did not run run for reelection. He wasn't exactly welcomed. Their a delegation of San Francisco residents confronted him at one of the city's hotels and demanded he depart the city Herbert was furious and unapologetic. He claimed he was being unfairly targeted for partisan purposes and not because he you know murdered a waiter over breakfast Herbert eventually left California for El Paso when the civil war broke out he enlisted in the confederate army and encountered a faux better equipped to defend itself than an unarmed waiter Herbert died in eighteen sixty four of wounds sustained in battle. I'm Mike Rosenfeld.

Coming up next