Today in History

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Saturday, May 27, the 147th day of 2017. There are 218 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On May 27, 1937, the newly completed Golden Gate Bridge connecting San Francisco and Marin County, California, was opened to pedestrian traffic (vehicles began crossing the next day).

On this date:

In 1896, 255 people were killed when a tornado struck St. Louis, Missouri, and East St. Louis, Illinois.

In 1929, Charles A. Lindbergh Jr. married Anne Morrow in Englewood, New Jersey.

In 1933, the Chicago World's Fair, celebrating "A Century of Progress," officially opened. Walt Disney's Academy Award-winning animated short "The Three Little Pigs" was first released.

In 1935, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Schechter Poultry Corp. v. United States, unanimously struck down the National Industrial Recovery Act, a key component of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's "New Deal" legislative program.

In 1936, the Cunard liner RMS Queen Mary left England on its maiden voyage to New York. The first Aer Lingus flight took place as a de Havilland Dragon carried five passengers from Dublin to Bristol, England.

In 1941, the British Royal Navy sank the German battleship Bismarck off France with a loss of some 2,000 lives, three days after the Bismarck sank the HMS Hood with the loss of more than 1,400 lives. Amid rising world tensions, President Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed an "unlimited national emergency" during a radio address from the White House.

In 1942, Doris "Dorie" Miller, a cook aboard the USS West Virginia, became the first African-American to receive the Navy Cross for displaying "extraordinary courage and disregard for his own personal safety" during Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor.

In 1957, the single "That'll Be the Day" by Buddy Holly's group The Crickets was released by Brunswick Records.

In 1962, a dump fire in Centralia, Pennsylvania, ignited a blaze in underground coal deposits that continues to burn to this day.

In 1977, the punk rock single "God Save the Queen," the Sex Pistols' sardonic salute to Queen Elizabeth II, was released by Virgin Records.

In 1985, in Beijing, representatives of Britain and China exchanged instruments of ratification for an accord returning Hong Kong to Chinese control in 1997.

In 1998, Michael Fortier (FOR'-tee-ur), the government's star witness in the Oklahoma City bombing case, was sentenced to 12 years in prison after apologizing for not warning anyone about the deadly plot. (Fortier was freed in Jan. 2006.)

Ten years ago: American forces freed 42 kidnapped Iraqis in a raid on an al-Qaida hideout north of Baghdad. Dario Franchitti (DA'-ree-oh fran-KEE'-tee) won a rain-abbreviated Indy 500. Broadway actress Gretchen Wyler died in Camarillo, California, at age 75.

Five years ago: Syria strongly denied allegations that its forces had killed scores of people including women and children in Houla, but the U.N. Security Council condemned government forces for shelling residential areas. At the Cannes Film Festival, Austrian director Michael Haneke won the top prize for a second time with his stark film, "Amour." Dario Franchitti won the Indianapolis 500 for the third time. Johnny Tapia, the five-time boxing champion whose turbulent career was marked by cocaine addiction, alcohol, depression and run-ins with the law, was found dead at his Albuquerque, New Mexico, home; he was 45.

One year ago: President Barack Obama became the first American chief executive to visit Hiroshima, the city where the U.S. dropped the first atomic bomb during World War II, declaring it a fitting place to summon people everywhere to embrace the vision of a world without nuclear weapons. SpaceX pulled off another rocket landing, the third in just under two months, as the first-stage booster of the unmanned Falcon rocket settled vertically onto a barge 400 miles off Florida's east coast, eight minutes after the late afternoon liftoff.

Today's Birthdays: Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Herman Wouk (wohk) is 102. Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger is 94. Former FBI Director William Sessions is 87. Author John Barth is 87. Actress Lee Meriwether is 82. Musician Ramsey Lewis is 82. Actor Louis Gossett Jr. is 81. Rhythm-and-blues singer Raymond Sanders (The Persuasions) is 78. Country singer Don Williams is 78. Actor Bruce Weitz is 74. Motion Picture Association of America Chairman Christopher Dodd is 73. Singer Bruce Cockburn (KOH'-burn) is 72. Singer-actress Dee Dee Bridgewater is 67. Actor Richard Schiff is 62. Singer Siouxsie Sioux (The Creatures, Siouxsie and the Banshees) is 60. Rock singer-musician Neil Finn (The Finn Brothers) is 59. Actress Peri Gilpin is 56. Actress Cathy Silvers is 56. Comedian Adam Carolla is 53. Actor Todd Bridges is 52. Rock musician Sean Kinney (Alice In Chains) is 51. Actor Dondre Whitfield is 48. Actor Paul Bettany is 46. Rock singer-musician Brian Desveaux (Nine Days) is 46. Country singer Jace Everett is 45. Actor Jack McBrayer is 44. Rapper Andre 3000 (Outkast) is 42. Rapper Jadakiss is 42. TV chef Jamie Oliver is 42. Alt-country singer-songwriter Shane Nicholson is 41. Actor Ben Feldman is 37. Actor Michael Steger is 37. Actor Darin Brooks is 33. Actor-singer Chris Colfer is 27. Actor Ethan Dampf is 23.

Thought for Today: "Every new opinion, at its starting, is precisely in a minority of one." Thomas Carlyle, Scottish critic and historian (1795-1881).

 

Today in History

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Friday, May 26, the 146th day of 2017. There are 219 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On May 26, 1917, a tornado in central Illinois killed 101 people, mostly in the Mattoon-Charleston area.

On this date:

In 1521, Martin Luther was banned by the Edict of Worms (vohrms) because of his religious beliefs and writings.

In 1868, the impeachment trial of President Andrew Johnson ended with his acquittal on the remaining charges.

In 1897, the Gothic horror novel "Dracula" by Bram Stoker was first published in London.

In 1938, the House Un-American Activities Committee was established by Congress.

In 1940, Operation Dynamo, the evacuation of some 338,000 Allied troops from Dunkirk, France, began during World War II.

In 1942, the Tule (TOO'-lee) Lake Segregation Center for Japanese-American wartime internees opened in northern California. The U.S. War Department formally established the Armed Forces Radio Service (AFRS). Radio Tokyo boasted of recent victories in the Pacific War and declared that "the Japanese people can look forward to a triumphal march into London and a victory march in New York."

In 1954, explosions rocked the aircraft carrier USS Bennington off Rhode Island, killing 103 sailors. (The initial blast was blamed on leaking catapult fluid ignited by the flames of a jet.)

In 1960, U.N. Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge accused the Soviets during a meeting of the Security Council of hiding a microphone inside a wood carving of the Great Seal of the United States that had been presented to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.

In 1972, President Richard M. Nixon and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev signed the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in Moscow. (The U.S. withdrew from the treaty in 2002.)

In 1977, George Willig scaled the outside of the South Tower of New York's World Trade Center; he was arrested at the top of the 110-story building.

In 1981, 14 people were killed when a Marine jet crashed onto the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz off Florida.

In 1991, a Lauda Air Boeing 767 crashed in Thailand, killing all 223 people aboard.

Ten years ago: Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki (NOO'-ree ahl-MAHL'-ih-kee), U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker and American commander Gen. David Petraeus flew to Iraq's blistering western desert in a rare joint outing to highlight gains there in the fight against insurgents.

Five years ago: Gruesome video posted online showed rows of dead Syrian children lying in a mosque in Houla, haunting images of what activists called one of the deadliest regime attacks yet in Syria's 14-month-old uprising. International space station astronauts floated into the Dragon, a day after its heralded arrival as the world's first commercial supply ship.

One year ago: President Barack Obama, visiting Japan, said foreign leaders were "rattled" by Donald Trump and had good reason to feel that way, as he accused the presumptive Republican presidential nominee of ignorance about world affairs. First lady Michelle Obama told graduates at a Native American high school in Santa Fe, New Mexico, to take pride in their history and cultures at a time when she said the "loudest voices in the national conversation" suggested turning away from the tribal values that were part of their education. Angela Paton, an actress best known for appearing with Bill Murray in "Groundhog Day," died in Oakland, California, at age 86.

Today's Birthdays: Sportscaster Brent Musberger is 78. Rock musician Garry Peterson (Guess Who) is 72. Singer Stevie Nicks is 69. Actress Pam Grier is 68. Actor Philip Michael Thomas is 68. Country singer Hank Williams Jr. is 68. British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn is 68. Actress Margaret Colin is 59. Country singer-songwriter Dave Robbins is 58. Actor Doug Hutchison is 57. Actress Genie Francis is 55. Comedian Bobcat Goldthwait is 55. Singer-actor Lenny Kravitz is 53. Actress Helena Bonham Carter is 51. Distance runner Zola Budd is 51. Rock musician Phillip Rhodes is 49. Actor Joseph Fiennes (FYNZ) is 47. Singer Joey Kibble (Take 6) is 46. Actor-producer-writer Matt Stone is 46. Contemporary Christian musician Nathan Cochran is 39. Actress Elisabeth Harnois is 38. Actor Hrach Titizian is 38.

Thought for Today: "Life is a tragedy full of joy." Bernard Malamud, American author (1914-1986).

 

Today in History

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Wednesday, May 24, the 144th day of 2017. There are 221 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On May 24, 1775, John Hancock was unanimously elected President of the Continental Congress in Philadelphia, succeeding Peyton Randolph.

On this date:

In 1844, Samuel F.B. Morse transmitted the message "What hath God wrought" from Washington to Baltimore as he formally opened America's first telegraph line.

In 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge, linking Brooklyn and Manhattan, was dedicated by President Chester Alan Arthur and New York Gov. Grover Cleveland.

In 1935, the first major league baseball game to be played at night took place at Cincinnati's Crosley Field as the Reds beat the Philadelphia Phillies, 2-1.

In 1937, in a set of rulings, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Social Security Act of 1935.

In 1941, the German battleship Bismarck sank the British battle cruiser HMS Hood in the North Atlantic, killing all but three of the 1,418 men on board.

In 1957, anti-American rioting broke out in Taipei, Taiwan, over the acquittal of a U.S. Army sergeant who had shot and killed a Chinese man.

In 1962, astronaut Scott Carpenter became the second American to orbit the Earth as he flew aboard Aurora 7.

In 1976, Britain and France opened trans-Atlantic Concorde supersonic transport service to Washington.

In 1977, in a surprise move, the Kremlin ousted Soviet President Nikolai Podgorny from the Communist Party's ruling Politburo.

In 1980, Iran rejected a call by the World Court in The Hague to release the American hostages.

In 1994, four Islamic fundamentalists convicted of bombing New York's World Trade Center in 1993 were each sentenced to 240 years in prison.

In 2001, 23 people were killed when the floor of a Jerusalem wedding hall collapsed beneath dancing guests, sending them plunging several stories into the basement.

Ten years ago: Bowing to President George W. Bush, Congress passed an emergency war spending bill that did not include a provision ordering troops home from Iraq beginning in the fall of 2007. Ohio death row inmate Christopher Newton was executed by injection; it took him 16 minutes to die, more than twice the usual amount of time, once chemicals began flowing into his veins, which the execution team had trouble locating.

Five years ago: President Barack Obama doubled down on criticism of rival Mitt Romney's background as a venture capitalist, telling a rally at the Iowa State Fairgrounds there might be value in such experience but "not in the White House." Brian Banks, a former high school football star whose dreams of a pro career were shattered by what turned out to be a false rape accusation, burst into tears as a judge in Long Beach, California, threw out the charge that had sent Banks to prison for more than five years.

One year ago: Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton and presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump each won primaries in Washington state. Protests outside a Donald Trump rally in Albuquerque, New Mexico, turned violent as demonstrators threw burning T-shirts, plastic bottles and other items at police officers, overturned trash cans and knocked down barricades.

Today's Birthdays: Actor-comedian-impressionist Stanley Baxter is 91. Jazz musician Archie Shepp is 80. Comedian Tommy Chong is 79. Singer Bob Dylan is 76. Actor Gary Burghoff is 74. Singer Patti LaBelle is 73. Actress Priscilla Presley is 72. Country singer Mike Reid is 70. Actor Jim Broadbent is 68. Actor Alfred Molina is 64. Singer Rosanne Cash is 62. Actor Cliff Parisi is 57. Actress Kristin Scott Thomas is 57. Rock musician Jimmy Ashhurst (Buckcherry) is 54. Rock musician Vivian Trimble is 54. Actor John C. Reilly is 52. Actor Dana Ashbrook is 50. Actor Eric Close is 50. Actor Carl Payne is 48. Rock musician Rich Robinson is 48. Actor Dash Mihok is 43. Actor Bryan Greenburg is 39. Actor Owen Benjamin is 37. Actor Billy L. Sullivan is 37. Actor-rapper Jerod Mixon (aka Big Tyme) is 36. Rock musician Cody Hanson (Hinder) is 35. Dancer-choreographer-singer Mark Ballas is 31. Country singer Billy Gilman is 29. Rapper/producer G-Eazy is 28. Actress Brianne Howey (TV: "The Exorcist") is 28. Actor Cayden Boyd is 23.

Thought for Today: "It is the weakness and danger of republics, that the vices as well as virtues of the people are represented in their legislation." Helen Maria Hunt Jackson, American author (1830-1885).

 

Today in History

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Tuesday, May 23, the 143rd day of 2017. There are 222 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On May 23, 1967, Egypt closed the Straits of Tiran to Israeli shipping, an action which helped precipitate war between Israel and its Arab neighbors the following month.

On this date:

In 1430, Joan of Arc was captured by the Burgundians, who sold her to the English.

In 1533, the marriage of England's King Henry VIII to Catherine of Aragon was declared null and void by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Cranmer.

In 1788, South Carolina became the eighth state to ratify the United States Constitution.

In 1814, a third version of Beethoven's only opera, "Fidelio," had its world premiere in Vienna.

In 1915, Italy declared war on Austria-Hungary during World War I.

In 1934, bank robbers Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker were shot to death in a police ambush in Bienville Parish, Louisiana.

In 1937, industrialist and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller, founder of the Standard Oil Co. and the Rockefeller Foundation, died in Ormond Beach, Florida, at age 97.

In 1939, the Navy submarine USS Squalus sank during a test dive off the New England coast. Thirty-two crew members and one civilian were rescued, but 26 others died; the sub was salvaged and re-commissioned the USS Sailfish.

In 1945, Nazi official Heinrich Himmler committed suicide by biting into a cyanide capsule while in British custody in Luneburg, Germany.

In 1977, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the appeals of former Nixon White House aides H.R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman and former Attorney General John N. Mitchell in connection with their Watergate convictions. Moluccan extremists seized a train and a primary school in the Netherlands; the hostage drama ended June 11 as Dutch marines stormed the train, resulting in the deaths of six out of nine hijackers and two hostages, while the school siege ended peacefully.

In 1984, Surgeon General C. Everett Koop issued a report saying there was "very solid" evidence linking cigarette smoke to lung disease in non-smokers. "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom," starring Harrison Ford, was released by Paramount Pictures.

In 1992, top anti-Mafia prosecutor Giovanni Falcone was killed in a remote-controlled highway bombing outside Palermo, Sicily, along with his wife and three police escorts. (Salvatore "Toto" Riina, the Mafia's "boss of bosses," was arrested in Jan. 1993 and was later convicted with others of plotting the assassinations of Falcone and another leading anti-Mafia prosecutor, Paolo Borsellino.)

Ten years ago: President George W. Bush, speaking at the U.S. Coast Guard commencement, portrayed the Iraq war as a battle between the U.S. and al-Qaida and said Osama bin Laden was setting up a terrorist cell in Iraq to strike targets in America. Iraqi police dragged from the Euphrates River a body identified as that of Pfc. Joseph Anzack Jr., who had disappeared during a May 12 ambush claimed by al-Qaida. Jordin Sparks was crowned the new "American Idol" on the Fox reality show.

Five years ago: Egypt held the Arab world's first competitive presidential vote (Islamist Mohammed Morsi was ultimately named the winner following a runoff). A Pakistani doctor who helped the CIA hunt down Osama bin Laden was convicted of conspiring against the state and was sentenced to 33 years in prison; U.S. officials had urged Pakistan to release Dr. Shakil Afridi. (The sentence was later overturned; Afridi faces a retrial.) Phillip Phillips, a bluesy Georgia guitar man, was crowned the new "American Idol" after defeating teenager Jessica Sanchez.

One year ago: During his visit to Asia, President Barack Obama, eager to banish lingering shadows of the Vietnam War, lifted the U.S. embargo on selling arms to America's former enemy. Prosecutors failed for the second time in their bid to hold Baltimore police accountable for the arrest and death of Freddie Gray when an officer was acquitted in the racially charged case that triggered riots a year earlier. The Supreme Court upended the conviction and death sentence of a black Georgia man because prosecutors had improperly excluded African-Americans from his all-white jury. Dr. Henry Heimlich, the 96-year-old retired chest surgeon credited with developing the namesake Heimlich maneuver, used it to save a woman choking on food at his senior living center in Cincinnati.

Today's Birthdays: Bluegrass singer Mac Wiseman is 92. Actress Barbara Barrie is 86. Actress Joan Collins is 84. Actor Charles Kimbrough is 81. International Tennis Hall of Famer John Newcombe is 73. Actress Lauren Chapin is 72. Country singer Misty Morgan is 72. Country singer Judy Rodman is 66. Chess grandmaster Anatoly Karpov is 66. Boxing Hall of Famer Marvelous Marvin Hagler is 63. Singer Luka Bloom is 62. Actor-comedian-game show host Drew Carey is 59. Actress Lea DeLaria is 59. Country singer Shelly West is 59. Actor Linden Ashby is 57. Actress-model Karen Duffy is 56. Actress Melissa McBride is 52. Rock musician Phil Selway (Radiohead) is 50. Actress Laurel Holloman is 49. Rock musician Matt Flynn (Maroon 5) is 47. Singer Lorenzo is 45. Country singer Brian McComas is 45. Actor John Pollono is 45. Singer Maxwell is 44. Singer Jewel is 43. Game show contestant Ken Jennings is 43. Actress Kelly Monaco is 41. Actor D.J. Cotrona is 37. Actor Lane Garrison is 37. Actor-comedian Tim Robinson is 36. Country singer Brett Young is 36. Actor Adam Wylie is 33. Movie writer-director Ryan Coogler is 31. Golfer Morgan Pressel is 29. Folk/pop singer/songwriter Sarah Jarosz (juh-ROHZ') is 26.

Thought for Today: "He who cannot rest, cannot work; he who cannot let go, cannot hold on; he who cannot find footing, cannot go forward." Henry Emerson Fosdick, American clergyman (1878-1969).

 

Today in History

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Monday, May 22, the 142nd day of 2017. There are 223 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On May 22, 1992, after a reign lasting nearly 30 years, Johnny Carson hosted NBC's "Tonight Show" for the final time (Jay Leno took over as host three days later).

On this date:

In 1860, the United States and Japan exchanged ratifications of the Treaty of Amity and Commerce during a ceremony in Washington.

In 1913, the American Cancer Society was founded in New York under its original name, the American Society for the Control of Cancer.

In 1935, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appeared before Congress to explain his decision to veto a bill that would have allowed World War I veterans to cash in bonus certificates before their 1945 due date.

In 1939, the foreign ministers of Germany and Italy, Joachim von Ribbentrop and Galeazzo Ciano, signed a "Pact of Steel" committing the two countries to a military alliance.

In 1947, the Truman Doctrine was enacted as Congress appropriated military and economic aid for Greece and Turkey.

In 1960, an earthquake of magnitude 9.5, the strongest ever measured, struck southern Chile, claiming some 1,655 lives.

In 1967, a fire at the L'Innovation department store in Brussels killed 322 people. Poet and playwright Langston Hughes died in New York at age 65.

In 1968, the nuclear-powered submarine USS Scorpion, with 99 men aboard, sank in the Atlantic Ocean. (The remains of the sub were later found on the ocean floor 400 miles southwest of the Azores.)

In 1969, the lunar module of Apollo 10, with Thomas P. Stafford and Eugene Cernan aboard, flew to within nine miles of the moon's surface in a dress rehearsal for the first lunar landing.

In 1972, President Richard Nixon began a visit to the Soviet Union, during which he and Kremlin leaders signed the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. The island nation of Ceylon became the republic of Sri Lanka.

In 1981 "Yorkshire Ripper" Peter Sutcliffe was convicted in London of murdering 13 women and was sentenced to life in prison.

In 2011, a tornado devastated Joplin, Missouri, with winds up to 250 mph, claiming at least 159 lives and destroying about 8,000 homes and businesses.

Ten years ago: British prosecutors accused former KGB agent Andrei Lugovoi (AHN'-dray LOO'-goh-voy) of murder in the radioactive poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko (leet-vee-NYEN'-koh). (Russia, however, has refused to extradite Lugovoi.) Olympic gold medalist speedskater Apolo Anton Ohno and his professional dance partner, Julianne Hough (huhf), won ABC's "Dancing With the Stars."

Five years ago: The Falcon 9, built by billionaire businessman Elon Musk, sped toward the International Space Station with a load of groceries and other supplies, marking the first time a commercial spacecraft had been sent to the orbiting outpost. In Flint, Michigan, a drifter accused of faking car trouble, then stabbing strangers who came to his aid, was convicted of murdering handyman Arnold Minor after jurors rejected an insanity defense. (Elias Abuelazam (EE'-lee-us ah-BOOL'-ah-zahm) is serving a life sentence.) Wesley A. Brown, the first African-American to graduate from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, died in Silver Spring, Maryland, at age 85. Green Bay Packers receiver Donald Driver and his professional partner, Peta Murgatroyd, won "Dancing with the Stars" on ABC.

One year ago: President Barack Obama arrived in Vietnam, making him the third sitting president to visit the country since the end of the war. Madonna paid homage to Prince by wearing his signature color and bringing another icon Stevie Wonder onstage to sing the classic "Purple Rain" at the Billboard Music Awards. Veteran British director Ken Loach won his second Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival for "I, Daniel Blake" a stark portrayal of a disabled man's struggle with the crushing benefits system in northern England.

Today's Birthdays: Singer Charles Aznavour is 93. Actor Michael Constantine is 90. Conductor Peter Nero is 83. Actor-director Richard Benjamin is 79. Actor Frank Converse is 79. Former CNN anchor Bernard Shaw is 77. Actress Barbara Parkins is 75. Retired MLB All-Star pitcher Tommy John is 74. Songwriter Bernie Taupin is 67. Actor-producer Al Corley is 62. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, is 60. Singer Morrissey is 58. Actress Ann Cusack is 56. Country musician Dana Williams (Diamond Rio) is 56. Rock musician Jesse Valenzuela is 55. Actor Mark Christopher Lawrence is 53. Former White House Press Secretary Jay Carney is 52. Rhythm-and-blues singer Johnny Gill (New Edition) is 51. Rock musician Dan Roberts (Crash Test Dummies) is 50. Actress Brooke Smith is 50. Actor Michael Kelly is 48. Model Naomi Campbell is 47. Actress Anna Belknap is 45. Actress Alison Eastwood is 45. Singer Donell Jones is 44. Actor Sean Gunn is 43. Actress A.J. Langer is 43. Actress Ginnifer Goodwin is 39. Rhythm-and-blues Vivian Green is 38. Actress Maggie Q is 38. Olympic gold-medal speed skater Apolo Anton Ohno is 35. Actress Camren Bicondova is 18.

Thought for Today: "It is often said that men are ruled by their imaginations; but it would be truer to say they are governed by the weakness of their imaginations." Walter Bagehot, English editor and economist (1826-1877).