Needham Austin (1909 - 1941)



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Needham Austin Biography & Family History

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1909 - In the year that Needham Austin was born, the NAACP was founded by W. E. B. Du Bois. The organization focused on legal strategies designed to confront the critical civil rights issues of the day - which included lynching and segregation in schools. The goal was to secure for all people the rights guaranteed in the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the United States Constitution.

1924 - By the time this person was just 15 years old, Macy's department store in New York held its first "Thanksgiving parade" on November 27th at 9a - during church services but leaving plenty of time to attend the big football game between Syracuse and Columbia universities. The parade was held as a way to promote the opening of the “World’s Largest Store” and its 1 million square feet of retail space in Manhattan’s Herald Square. The parade was 6 miles long and included floats, Macy's employees dressed as clowns, cowboys, and sword-wielding knights, and animals from Central Park Zoo. Santa Claus, of course, brought up the rear - opening the Christmas shopping season for Macy's.

1925 - Needham was 16 years old when gangster Al "Scarface" Capone took over the Chicago bootlegging racket at age 26. Previously right hand man to boss Johnny Torrio, Capone took over when Torrio was shot and severely injured and decided to resign. The bootlegging and brothel organization was massive and when asked what he did, Capone often replied "I am just a businessman, giving the people what they want".

1938 - Needham was 29 years old when on October 30th, a Sunday, The Mercury Theatre on the Air broadcast Orson Welles' special Halloween show The War of the World's. A clever take on H.G. Wells' novel, the show began with simulated "breaking news" of an invasion by Martians. Because of the realistic nature of the "news," there was a public outcry the next day, calling for regulation by the FCC. Although the current story is that many were fooled and panicked, in reality very few people were fooled. But the show made Orson Welles' career.

1941 - In the year of Needham Austin's passing, on December 7th, the Japanese attacked the military base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The surprise aerial attack damaged 8 U.S. battleships (6 later returned to service), including the USS Arizona, and destroyed 188 aircraft. 2,402 American citizens died and 1,178 wounded were wounded. On December 8th, the U.S. declared war on Japan and on December 11th, Germany and Italy (allies of Japan) declared war on the United States. World War II was in full swing.

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This obit of Needham Austin is updated by the community. Edit this biography to contribute to their obituary. Include details such as cemetery, burial, newspaper obituary and grave or marker inscription if available.

Needham Austin died in March 1941 at 32 years old. There is no listed cause of death. Needham was born on February 8, 1909. We are unaware of information about Needham's surviving family.


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