Wednesday, July 31, 2013


July 31, 2013


Detroit, Michigan (JFK+50) The head of the Teamsters Union, James Riddle Hoffa*, disappeared 38 years ago today, July 31, 1975, after last being seen in his car around 2:45 p.m. in the parking lot of the Machus Red Fox Restaurant here in the Detroit suburb of Bloomfield.

When Mr. Hoffa, who was apparently to meet with mob leaders, did not return home, his wife filed a missing persons report with local police authorities.

Police located Hoffa's vehicle, but was unable to locate the Teamsters boss.

Jimmy Hoffa became president of the Teamsters Union in 1957 but had been the target of government investigations during the 1960s for his associations with organized crime.

Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, frustrated with failures of the Justice Dept. to prosecute Hoffa, launched a full scale attack on organized crime including the Teamsters.

Jimmy Hoffa reportedly said when he was told of President Kennedy's assassination.... 

 "Well, Bobby Kennedy is just another lawyer now." 

                  RFK listens to Jimmy Hoffa
                  Congressional Investigation
                          September 17, 1958

*James Riddle Hoffa (1913-1975) was born in Brazil, Indiana but his family moved to Detroit in 1924 where he would spend the rest of his life.

JRH began work in a grocery store and quickly rose in the ranks of organized labor.  He would serve in the Brotherhood of Teamsters from 1932 to 1975.

Hoffa became VP of the union in 1952 was president from 1958 to 1971.

JRH was convicted of attempted bribery of a grand juror in Chattanooga, TN and sentenced to prison.  He began serving time in March 1967 at Lewisburg Federal Prison in Pennsylvania.

President Nixon authorized Hoffa's release in 1971 on the condition that he would not participate in union activities for 10 years.

James Riddle Hoffa was declared officially dead on July 30, 1982.


New York City (JFK+50) Senator Robert A. Taft (R-Ohio) died of cancer at New York Hospital 60 years ago today at the age of 63.

Senator Taft, the son of President William Howard Taft, a conservative Republican, was a critic of FDR's New Deal in the US Senate in 1938.

Taft also was an opponent of Truman's policy of the containment of communism and also opposed membership in NATO.

Senator Taft was interred at Indian Hill Episcopal Church Cemetery in Cincinatti, Ohio.*

*Senator John F. Kennedy named Bob Taft as one of the five greatest US senators in 1957.

             Senator Robert A. Taft of Ohio


Elizabethton, Tennessee (JFK+50) The 17th President of the United States and the 1st president to be impeached, Andrew Johnson, died here in upper East Tennessee 138 years ago today, July 31, 1875, while visiting his daughter.

Andrew Johnson was born in North Carolina but moved to Greeneville, Tennessee where he was elected mayor in 1834. 

The following year Johnson became a state legislator and in 1843 became a United States senator.

President Abraham Lincoln, a Republican, chose Andrew Johnson, a Democrat, as his running mate in 1864 to unify the Republican Party and the Nation as the Civil War was ending.

On April 15, 1865, Andrew Johnson became President of the United States upon Lincoln's death.

While Johnson's presidency was troubled, he escaped conviction on impeachment charges by a single vote and was able to complete his term.