The Sacramento Bee is celebrating its 160th anniversary this year. This story is part of our ongoing coverage.
June 26, 2016: The state Capitol grounds are a celebrated part of Sacramento, with strollers enjoying the shaded canopy of century-old trees, wedding parties taking photographs and schoolchildren on tours.
On June 26, 2016, however, Capitol Park erupted into a melee of bloodshed and anger as a neo-Nazi group tried to march under the banner of the Golden State Skinheads and the Traditionalist Worker Party.
The group had the proper permit for its march, but it had advertised its intentions online for months beforehand, enough time for anti-fascist groups from the Bay Area and Sacramento to mount a counter-demonstration that turned violent.
Even before the event began, some of the neo-Nazi marchers found themselves under attack as they walked toward the park, and soon hundreds of anti-fascist demonstrators swarmed onto the grounds.
The resulting confrontation left five people with stab wounds and five more with other injuries. No arrests were made.
Both sides live-streamed the confrontation, which took place in plain view of more than 100 Sacramento police officers who formed a cordon around the park and a separate contingent of California Highway Patrol officers, some of them on horseback.
The grounds have been the scene of many protests and marches in the past, as well as the attempted assassination of President Gerald R. Ford in September 1975 by Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme.
But officials said the outbreak of violence in June 2016 was the worst in memory, and left city and Capitol authorities saying they need better coordination and planning in the future to avoid such problems.
Landmark cathedral dedicated in 1889
1889: The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament was dedicated nearly 128 years ago. Here are excerpts from a June 29, 1889, Sacramento Bee story previewing the June 30 event:
The Cathedral of the Holy Sacrament, which is to be formally dedicated to the cause of religion tomorrow, is the richest and most imposing church edifice on the Pacific Coast.
There is no danger that this will be contradicted by anyone who has seen the splendid edifice. To Bishop Manogue, whose indefatigable industry, business ability and devotion to the sacred cause to which he has dedicated his life, Sacramento owes the unmatched addition to her architectural beauty.
No man, whatever is religion, can look upon the massive building without a feeling of satisfaction and admiration. Its stately towers, its massive dome vying with the dome of the Capitol, its great walls and its general contour are all so proportioned and arranged that the eye finds a pleasure in resting upon it entirely separated from the purpose of its construction.
The Cathedral is built in the Italian style. A dome 58 feet in diameter rises from the center of the high roof to a height of, including the surmounting cross. The structure is one of the features of the city and will always command attention from visitors.