This Day in History: June 7

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  • 1769: Daniel Boone begins to explore present-day Kentucky.
  • 1892: Homer Plessy, a “Creole of color,” is arrested for refusing to leave a Whites-only car of the East Louisiana Railroad. (Ruling on his case, the U.S. Supreme Court upholds “separate but equal” racial segregation, a concept it would renounce in 1954.)
  • 1965: The U.S. Supreme Court, in Griswold v. Connecticut, strikes down, 7-2, a Connecticut law used to prosecute a Planned Parenthood clinic in New Haven for providing contraceptives to married couples
  • 1993: The U.S. Supreme Court rules that religious groups could sometimes meet on school property after hours.
  • 1993: Ground is broken for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland.
  • 1998: In a hate crime that stuns the nation, James Byrd Jr., a 49-year-old Black man, is hooked by a chain to a pickup truck and dragged to his death in Jasper, Texas. (Two White men would be sentenced to death; Lawrence Russell Brewer would be executed in 2011, and John William King would be executed in April 2019. A third defendant, Shawn Berry, would receive life with the possibility of parole.)