Bessie Smith (1915 - 1982)

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Summary

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Bessie Smith Biography & Family History

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Birth

Death

Cause of death

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Obituary

Last Known Residence

Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, Florida

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Education

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Military Service

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Gender

Female

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Timeline

1915 - In the year that Bessie Smith was born, the Germans first used poison gas as a weapon at the second Battle of Ypres during World War I. While noxious gases had been used since ancient times, this was the first use of poisonous gas - in this case, lethal chlorine gas - in modern war. Subsequently, the French and British - as well as the United States when they entered World War 1 - developed and used lethal gas in war.

1933 - Bessie was 18 years old when the day after being inaugurated, the new President, Franklin Roosevelt, declared a four-day bank holiday to stop people from withdrawing their money from shaky banks (the bank run). Within 5 days of his administration, the Emergency Banking Act was passed - reorganizing banks and closing insolvent ones. In his first 100 days, he asked Congress to repeal Prohibition (which they did), signed the Tennessee Valley Authority Act, signed legislation that paid commodity farmers to leave their fields fallow, thus ending surpluses and boosting prices, signed a bill that gave workers the right to unionize and bargain collectively for higher wages and better working conditions as well as suspending some antitrust laws and establishing a federally funded Public Works Administration, and won passage of 12 other major laws that helped the economy.

1934 - By the time she was 19 years old, on July 22nd, gangster John Dillinger was killed in Chicago. His gang had robbed banks and police stations, among other charges, and he was being hunted by J. Edgar Hoover, head of the FBI - although many in the public saw him as a "Robin Hood". A madam from a brothel in which he was hiding became an informer for the FBI and, after a shootout with FBI agents, Dillinger was shot and died.

1966 - She was 51 years old when on September 8th, the first Star Trek episode, "The Man Trap," was broadcast on NBC. The plot concerned a creature that sucked salt from human bodies. The original series only aired for 3 seasons due to low ratings.

1982 - In the year of Bessie Smith's passing, on September 14th, Princess Grace of Monaco (American actress Grace Kelly), 52, died of injuries when her car plunged off a mountain road. Her 17 year old daughter, Stephanie, was also in the car and suffered serious injuries but recovered. It's believed that the accident was caused when Princess Grace, who was driving, had a mild stroke.

Bessie Smith Family Tree

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Obituary

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Bessie Smith passed away in February 1982 at 66 years old. No cause of death has been listed for Bessie. She was born on October 1, 1915. We have no information about Bessie's family. We know that Bessie Smith had been residing in Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, Florida.

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