Boston Marathon Bombing Forces a Look at the Grisly and Often Forgotten History of U.S. Bombings

By: Justin Nobel | Date: Mon, April 15th, 2013

Two people have been confirmed dead in the Boston Marathon Bombing. The U.S. has a surprisingly long and grisly history of bombings.

My heart goes out to those in Boston. Sadly, the U.S. has a grisly and often forgotten history of bombings…

May 4, 1886 – A bomb was thrown in a labor rally at Haymarket Square in Chicago, seven policemen were killed. Police fired into the crowd, killing four more. Anarchists were suspected.

December 30, 1905 – Frank Steunenberg, the former governor of Idaho was killed by a bomb rigged to the front gate of his home in Caldwell, Idaho.

October 1, 1910 – Bombings by labor activists at the Los Angeles Times building killed 21 people and caused a partial collapse of the building.

Bombings During the Periods of World War I and World War II

July 22, 1916 – A bomb in a suitcase exploded at the Preparedness Day Parade in San Francisco. The parade was in anticipation of the U.S.’s imminent entry into World War I.

November 24, 1917 – A bombing at a police station in Milwaukee, Wisconsin killed 10 people. The bomb was initially discovered by a social worker wrapped as a package next to an evangelical church. A janitor notified a police officer, who brought the bomb to police headquarters where it exploded. Prior to 9/11, it was the single largest loss of life in U.S. Police history.

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April to June, 1919  – Anarchists mailed more than three dozen dynamite-filled bombs to a series of prominent newspapermen, businessmen and politicians, including the Attorney General of the United States. A handful of people were killed.

September 16, 1920 – A bomb exploded in a horse-drawn wagon near Morgan Bank in downtown Manhattan, 38 people were killed and 300 were injured.

May 18, 1927 – 46 people were killed when Andrew Kehoe, whose farm had recently foreclosed, placed 400 kg of dynamite inside an elementary school. It remains the deadliest massacre at a school in U.S. history.

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July 22, 1948 – Stephen J. Supona dropped a homemade bomb from an airplane onto the United Nations building in New York City. Nobody was killed.

Bombings During the 1950s and 1960s

November 7, 1954 – A bomb exploded in a seat at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. Nobody was killed.

November 1, 1955 – In an effort to kill his mother so he could get the insurance money, John Graham planted a bomb on a United Air Lines DC-8. The bomb exploded over Colorado and the plane crashed, killing 44 people.

September 15, 1959 – A man entered an elementary school in Houston, Texas with a briefcase full of dynamite and killed six people, including himself and his son.

September 15, 1963 – A bomb exploded under the steps of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, killing four young girls attending Sunday school.

January 7, 1967 – A suicide bomber struck a Las Vegas motel, killing six people.

Bombings During the 1970s and 1980s

August 24, 1970 – A scientist at the University of Wisconsin was killed in a bomb planted in protest of the Vietnam War.

January 26, 1972 – The Jewish Defense League firebombed two offices in New York City, one person was killed at each location.

August 6, 1974 – A bomb exploded at a locker in the Los Angeles airport, three people were killed. The infamous Alphabet Bomber was suspected.

January 24, 1975 – A Puerto Rican paramilitary group advocating for an independent Puerto Rico bombed a tavern on Wall Street, in New York City, killing four people. The group was known as Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional (Armed Forces of National Liberation, or FALN). They were responsible for more than 120 bomb attacks in the U.S. through the late 1970s and early 1980s.

May 5, 1982 – A mail bomb injured a secretary at Vanderbilt University, in Nashville, Tennessee.

July 2, 1982 – A mail bomb injured a professor at University of California, in Berkeley.

December 11, 1985 – A bomb hidden in a paper bag killed a computer store owner in Sacramento, California.

December 17, 1989 – A judge in Alabama was killed by a mail bomb.

Recent Bombings

February 26, 1993 – The first World Trade Center bombing, in New York City. A truck bomb was parked in a basement parking garage. Six people were killed, more than 1,000 people were injured.

December 10, 1994 – A mail bomb sent by the infamous Unabomber killed New York City advertising executive Thomas Moser at his home in New Jersey.

April 19, 1995 – A truck bomb parked outside a federal building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma killed 169 people, including 15 children in a daycare center on the second floor.

April 24, 1995 – A Unabomber mail bomb killed Gilbert Murray, the president of the California Forestry Association.

September 12, 1995 – A car bomb killed five at a shopping mall in Maryland.

July 27, 1996 – A pipe bomb exploded at a night concert during the Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, killing two people.

September 11, 2001 – 9/11. Airplanes hijacked by terrorists crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania, some 2,996 people were killed.

Source: JohnstonsArchive and Wikipedia

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