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Laurence Henry Wood Smith (1920 - 1941)

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Laurence Henry Wood Smith
1920 - 1941
Born
c. 1920
Death
July 2, 1941
Summary
Laurence Henry Wood Smith was born c. 1920. He died on July 2, 1941 at 21 years old.
Updated: September 30, 2013
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Laurence Henry Wood Smith
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Laurence Henry Wood Smith
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Merville Communal Cemetery Extension Plot 2. Row B. Grave 19. in France
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Service number: 551183 Rank: Flight Sergeant Regiment: Royal Air Force Unit/ship/squadron: 226 Sqdn.
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Laurence Henry Wood Smith passed away on July 2, 1941 at 21 years old. He was buried in Merville Communal Cemetery Extension Plot 2. Row B. Grave 19., France. He was born c. 1920. There is no information about Laurence's family.
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Refresh this page to see various historical events that occurred during Laurence's lifetime.

In 1920, in the year that Laurence Henry Wood Smith was born, speakeasies replaced saloons as the center of social activity. After the 18th Amendment was ratified and selling alcohol became illegal, saloons closed and speakeasies took their place. Speakeasies, also called a blind pig or blind tiger, were "so called because of the practice of speaking quietly about such a place in public, or when inside it, so as not to alert the police or neighbors". There were a lot of them and they were very popular. And where saloons often prohibited women, they were encouraged at speakeasies because of the added profits.

In 1930, by the time he was just 10 years old, on August 6th, N.Y. Supreme Court Judge Joseph Crater went through papers in his office, destroyed some of them, withdrew all his money from the bank - $5,150, sold his stock, met friends at a restaurant for dinner and disappeared after getting into a taxi (or walking down the street - his friends' testimony later changed). His disappearance was reported to the police on September 3rd - almost a month later. His wife didn't know what happened, his fellow Justices had no idea, and his mistresses (he had several) said that they didn't know. While his disappearance was front page news, his fate was never discovered and after 40 years the case was closed, still without knowing if Crater was dead or alive.

In 1931, Laurence was only 11 years old when on May 1st, the Empire State Building opened in New York City. At 1,454 feet (including the roof and antenna), it was the tallest building in the world until the World Trade Center's North Tower was built in 1970. (It is now the 34th tallest.) Opening at the beginning of the Great Depression, most of the offices in the Empire State Building remained unoccupied for years and the observation deck was an equal source of revenue and kept the building profitable.

In 1941, in the year of Laurence Henry Wood Smith's passing, on June 25th, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8802, prohibiting racial discrimination in the defense industry. EO 8802 was the first federal action to prohibit employment discrimination - without prejudice as to "race, creed, color, or national origin" - in the U.S. Civil Rights groups had planned a march on Washington D.C. to protest for equal rights but with the signing of the Order, they canceled the March.

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Created on Jun 04, 2020 by Daniel Pinna
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