Lita Dearriba (1904 - 1984)



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Lita Dearriba Biography & Family History

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New York, New York County, New York

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1904 - In the year that Lita Dearriba was born, the "Teddy's Bear" was first produced. After seeing a political cartoon of President Teddy Roosevelt refusing to kill a clubbed and tied up bear, Jewish Russian immigrant Morris Michtom - who owned a candy shop and sold stuffed animals that he and his wife made at night at the store - made a "Teddy's Bear" and put it in his shop's window. The stuffed bears were an immediate success and Michtom and his wife went on to found the Ideal Novelty and Toy Co.

1916 - When she was merely 12 years old, visiting nurse Margaret Sanger opened the first birth control clinic in the U.S. at 46 Amboy St. in Brooklyn New York. Ten days after the clinic opened, Sanger was arrested for "violating laws against giving out birth control information" which was defined as obscenity. The clinic was not handing out birth control - just information about sex and birth control methods. (The Comstock law categorized information about abortion, family planning, and contraception as “obscene”.) The clinics and organizations that Sanger established later evolved into the Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

1964 - Lita was 60 years old when in June, three young civil rights workers - Andrew Goodman and Mickey Schwerner from New York City, and James Chaney from Meridian, Mississippi - were kidnapped and murdered in Mississippi. Working with "Freedom Summer", they were registering African-Americans to vote in the Southern states. Their bodies were found two months later. Although it was discovered that the White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, the Neshoba County Sheriff's Office and the Philadelphia, Mississippi Police Department were involved, only 7 men were convicted and served less than six years.

1971 - By the time she was 67 years old, on May 3rd, 10,000 federal troops, 5,100 officers of the D.C. Metropolitan Police, 2,000 members of the D.C. National Guard, and federal agents assembled in Washington DC to prevent an estimated 10,000 Vietnam War protesters from marching. President Nixon (who was in California) refused to give federal employees the day off and they had to navigate the police and protesters, adding to the confusion. By the end of a few days of protest, 12,614 people had been arrested - making it the largest mass arrest in US history.

1984 - In the year of Lita Dearriba's passing, on January 1, "Baby Bells" were created. AT&T had been the provider of telephone service (and equipment) in the United States. The company kept Western Electric, Bell Labs, and AT&T Long Distance. Seven new regional companies (the Baby Bells) covered local telephone service and were separately owned. AT&T lost 70% of its book value due to this move.

Lita Dearriba Family Tree

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Lita Dearriba died in December 1984 at 80 years old. No cause of death has been listed. She was born on August 15, 1904. There is no information about Lita's family. We know that Lita Dearriba had been residing in New York, New York County, New York.


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