1933 February 15

U.S. Customs Bars Vatican Art – Including Michelangelo Illustrations


U.S. Customs authorities, it was reported on this day, had barred art work from the Vatican from entering the country, including portfolios with illustrations by the renowned painter Michelangelo that were reproductions from the Sistine Chapel in Rome. A story in The New York Times noted that “hardly any pictures in the world are more famous” than the Sistine Chapel frescoes by Michelangelo. Nonetheless, the depiction of male and female nudes made them offensive to U.S. Customs officials. After four days, and the resulting embarrassment to the U.S., Customs released the illustrations for entry into the country.

Find a Day

Abortion Rights ACLU african-americans Alice Paul anti-communism Anti-Communist Hysteria Birth Control Brown v. Board of Education Censorship CIA Civil Rights Civil Rights Act of 1964 Cold War Espionage Act FBI First Amendment Fourteenth Amendment freedom of speech Free Speech Gay Rights Hate Speech homosexuality Hoover, J. Edgar HUAC Japanese American Internment King, Dr. Martin Luther Ku Klux Klan Labor Unions Lesbian and Gay Rights Loyalty Oaths McCarthy, Sen. Joe New York Times Obscenity Police Misconduct Same-Sex Marriage Separation of Church and State Sex Discrimination Smith Act Spying Spying on Americans Vietnam War Voting Rights Voting Rights Act of 1965 War on Terror Watergate White House Women's Rights Women's Suffrage World War I World War II Relocation Camps


Tell Us What You Think

We want to hear your comments, criticisms and suggestions!