Thursday, April 26, 2007

Seemingly improbably moments in American history.

In 1832, Sam Houston (that Sam Houston), then a private citizen, assaulted Ohio Rep. William Stanbery as Stanbery was walking home in Washington, D.C. According to Stanbery, Houston was indignant over something that Stanbery had said in a floor debate. Stanbery reported the assault to the House, which ordered its sergeant-at-arms to "take in custody, wherever to be found, the body of Samuel Houston; and the same in his custody to keep, subject to the further order and direction of this House." Houston was arrested and brought before the House, where he was represented by Francis Scott Key (that Francis Scott Key). After a monthlong trial, he was reprimanded and sent on his way.
Josh Chafetz in Slate.

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