trial saw schoolteacher, John T Scopes, 24, convicted of breaking Tennessee's
law against the teaching of evolution in public schools. The jury took only a
few minutes to reach its verdict, on this day.
it had all been a show trial, a gambit by townsfolk in Dayton to gain interest
from reporters and the outside world. Scopes had even agreed to being prosecuted.
The worst that he had done, in fact, was use a state approved textbook which had
a chapter on evolution in it. It isn't even clear if he had ever actually taught
evolution to his students.
Evolution vs Creation debate excited the interest of topnotch defense lawyer,
Clarence Darrow, who came to town to debate with the pro-Creationist, William
Jennings Bryan, who counted the Tennessee anti-evolution law as one of his successes.
Radio stations carried the exchanges live, and a loudspeaker system played to
the crowd outside.
called Bryan as a witness and proceeded to pummel him mercilessly on the literal
interpretation of the bible.
was fined $100 (withdrawn on a technicality).