William J Barfield (1904 - 1989)

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Summary

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William J Barfield Biography & Family History

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Birth

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Cause of death

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Obituary

Last Known Residence

Bradenton, Manatee County, Florida

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Education

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Middle name

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Gender

Male

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Timeline

1904 - In the year that William J Barfield was born, the World's Fair, officially known as the Louisiana Purchase Exposition, was held in St. Louis, Missouri. Attended by nearly 19.7 million people (and later the subject of a Judy Garland film), the Fair was funded by federal, state and local sources to the tune of $15 million. As the name suggests, the Fair was suggested as a way to celebrate the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. In the past, World's Fairs were a way of bringing new technology to the attention of the masses and this fair was no exception - the use of electricity (the public feared it at the time), personal cars, airplanes, and the electric streetcar were all highlighted.

1914 - When he was only 10 years old, in August, the Panama Canal opened to traffic. Begun by the French in the 1880's and abandoned, the United States undertook further construction in 1904. After 10 years, and the elimination of malaria carrying mosquitoes (which caused immense delays for the French and the Americans), the 48 mile long artificial waterway - a series of locks - created a shortcut for ships traveling between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

1967 - At the age of 63 years old, William was alive when on October 2nd, Thurgood Marshall was sworn in as the first black US Supreme Court justice. Marshall was the great-grandson of a slave and graduated first in his class at Howard University Law School. His nomination to the Supreme Court was approved by the Senate, 69 to 11.

1976 - William was 72 years old when on August 4th, a mysterious illness struck an American Legion convention in Philadelphia. Within a week, 25 people had died and 130 people had been hospitalized. It was the first known instance of what came to be called "Legionnaires Disease."

1989 - In the year of William J Barfield's passing, on March 24th, the Exxon Valdez, an oil tanker, struck a reef in Alaska's Prince William Sound and oil began spilling out of the hold. The oil would eventually contaminate more than a thousand miles of coastline. It is estimated that over 10.8 million gallons of crude oil spilled into the Sound - killing 100,000 to 250,000 seabirds, over 2,800 sea otters, about 12 river otters, 300 harbor seals, 247 bald eagles, and 22 orcas - as well as an unknown number of salmon and herring.

William J Barfield Family Tree

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Obituary

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William J Barfield died on December 10, 1989 at 85 years old. No cause of death has been entered. He was born on October 1, 1904. We are unaware of information about William's surviving family. We know that William J Barfield had been residing in Bradenton, Manatee County, Florida.

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