• Dr. Herpy

History of the Day Archives

 

  • September 17th, 1862- Confederate and Union troops fight at Antietam in the bloodiest single day in American history.
  • September 16th, 1620 – Pilgrims set sail for America aboard the Mayflower.
  • September 15th, 1916 – Tanks make combat debut at the First Battle of the Somme.
  • May 12, 1957 – Race car driver A.J. Foyt scores his first professional victory, in a U.S. Automobile Club midget car race in Kansas City, Missouri.

By Morris Wein

  • May 11, 1981 – Reggae performer Bob Marley died of cancer in Miami at the age of 36.
  • May 8, 1945 – Great Britain and the United States celebrate Victory in Europe Day. Cities in both nations, as well as formerly occupied cities in Western Europe, put out flags and banners, rejoicing in the defeat of the Nazi war machine.
  • May 7, 1994 – Norway’s most famous painting, The Scream by Edvard Munch, was recovered almost three months after it was stolen from a museum in Oslo.
  • May 6, 1994 – In a ceremony presided over by England’s Queen Elizabeth II and French President Francois Mitterand, a rail tunnel under the English Channel was officially opened, connecting Britain and the European mainland for the first time since the Ice Age.
  • May 5, 1961 – Navy Commander Alan Bartlett Shepard Jr. is launched into space aboard the Freedom 7 space capsule, becoming the first American astronaut to travel into space.
  • May 4, 1994 – Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat reached agreement in Cairo on the first stage of Palestinian self-rule.
  • May 1, 1931 – President Herbert Hoover officially dedicates New York City’s Empire State Building, pressing a button from the White House that turns on the building’s lights.
  • April 29, 2004 – The National World War II Memorial opens in Washington, D.C., to thousands of visitors, providing overdue recognition for the 16 million U.S. men and women who served in the war.
  • April 28, 1945 – “Il Duce,” Benito Mussolini, and his mistress, Clara Petacci, are shot by Italian partisans who had captured the couple as they attempted to flee to Switzerland.
  • April 27, 4977 B.C. – The universe is created, according to German mathematician and astronomer Johannes Kepler, considered a founder of modern science. Kepler is best known for his theories explaining the motion of planets.
  • April 24, 1800 – Library of Congress was established.
  • April 23, 1564 – The great English dramatist and poet, William Shakespeare, is born in Stratford-on-Avon.
  • April 22, 1970 – Earth Day, an event to increase public awareness of the world’s environmental problems, is celebrated in the United States for the first time.
  • April 21, 753 B.C. – According to tradition, on April 21, 753 B.C., Romulus and his twin brother, Remus, found Rome on the site where they were suckled by a she-wolf as orphaned infants. Actually, the Romulus and Remus myth originated sometime in the fourth century B.C., and the exact date of Rome’s founding was set by the Roman scholar Marcus Terentius Varro in the first century B.C.
  • April 20, 1980 – The Castro regime announces that all Cubans wishing to emigrate to the U.S. are free to board boats at the port of Mariel west of Havana, launching the Mariel Boatlift. The first of 125,000 Cuban refugees from Mariel reached Florida the next day.
  • April 17, 1970 – With the world anxiously watching, Apollo 13, a U.S. lunar spacecraft that suffered a severe malfunction on its journey to the moon, safely returns to Earth.
  • April 16, 1943 – In Basel, Switzerland, Albert Hoffman, a Swiss chemist working at the Sandoz pharmaceutical research laboratory, accidentally consumes LSD-25, a synthetic drug he had created in 1938 as part of his research into the medicinal value of lysergic acid compounds. After taking the drug, formally known as lysergic acid diethylamide, Dr. Hoffman was disturbed by unusual sensations and hallucinations.
  • April 15, 1947 – Jackie Robinson, age 28, becomes the first African-American player in Major League Baseball when he steps onto Ebbets Field in Brooklyn to compete for the Brooklyn Dodgers.
  • April 14, 1865;On this day in 1865, John Wilkes Booth, an actor and Confederate sympathizer, fatally shoots President Abraham Lincoln at a play at Ford’s Theater in Washington, D.C. The attack came only five days after Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered his massive army at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, effectively ending the American Civil War.
  • April 13, 1997 – 21-year-old Tiger Woods wins the prestigious Masters Tournament by a record 12 strokes in Augusta, Georgia. It was Woods’ first victory in one of golf’s four major championships–the U.S. Open, the British Open, the PGA Championship, and the Masters–and the greatest performance by a professional golfer in more than a century.
  • April 10, 1866 – The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) is founded in New York City by philanthropist and diplomat Henry Bergh, 54.
  • April 9, 1974 – Robert E. Leesurrenders his 28,000 troops to Union General Ulysses S. Grant, effectively ending the American Civil War.
  • April 8, 1974 – Hank Aaron of the Atlanta Braves hits his 715th career home run, breaking Babe Ruth’s legendary record of 714 home runs.
  • April 7, 1994 – Rwandan armed forces kill 10 Belgian peacekeeping officers in a successful effort to discourage international intervention in the genocide that had begun only hours earlier.
  • March 26, 1979 – In a ceremony at the White House, Egyptian President Anwar el-Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin sign a historic peace agreement, ending three decades of hostilities between Egypt and Israel and establishing diplomatic and commercial ties.
  • March 25, 1911 – In one of the darkest moments of America’s industrial history, the Triangle Shirtwaist Company factory in New York City burns down, killing 145 workers, on this day in 1911. The tragedy led to the development of a series of laws and regulations that better protected the safety of factory workers.
  • March 24, 1989 – The worst oil spill in U.S. territory begins when the supertanker Exxon Valdez, owned and operated by the Exxon Corporation, runs aground on a reef in Prince William Sound in southern Alaska.
  • March 23, 1839 – The initials “O.K.” are first published in The Boston Morning Post. Meant as an abbreviation for “oll correct,” a popular slang misspelling of “all correct” at the time, OK steadily made its way into the everyday speech of Americans.
  • March 20, 1965 – On this day in 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson notifies Alabama’s Governor George Wallace that he will use federal authority to call up the Alabama National Guard in order to supervise a planned civil rights march from Selma to Montgomery.
  • March 19, 2003 – On this day in 2003, the United States, along with coalition forces primarily from the United Kingdom, initiates war on Iraq.
  • March 18, 1998 – The one and only Kenneth Jacob Lauer was born.
  • March 17, 461 A.D. – Saint Patrick, Christian missionary, bishop and apostle of Ireland, dies at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland.
  • March 16, 1802 – The United States Military Academy–the first military school in the United States–is founded by Congress for the purpose of educating and training young men in the theory and practice of military science. Located at West Point, New York, the U.S. Military Academy is often simply known as West Point.
  • March 13, 1942 – The Quartermaster Corps (QMC) of the United States Army begins training dogs for the newly established War Dog Program, or “K-9 Corps.”
  • March 12, 1933 – Eight days after his inauguration, President Franklin D. Roosevelt gives his first national radio address or “fireside chat,” broadcast directly from the White House.
  • March 11, 1997 – Paul McCartney, a former member of the most successful rock band in history, The Beatles, was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his “services to music.”
  • March 10, 1997 – Buffy the Vampire Slayer airs for the first time on WB.
  • March 9, 1959 – The first Barbie doll goes on display at the American Toy Fair in New York City.
  • March 6, 1899 – The Imperial Patent Office in Berlin registers Aspirin, the brand name for acetylsalicylic acid, on behalf of the German pharmaceutical company Friedrich Bayer & Co.
  • March 5, 1963 – The Hula-Hoop, a hip-swiveling toy that became a huge fad across America when it was first marketed by Wham-O in 1958, is patented by the company’s co-founder, Arthur “Spud” Melin. An estimated 25 million Hula-Hoops were sold in its first four months of production alone.
  • March 4, 1933 – Franklin Delano Roosevelt is inaugurated as the 32nd president of the United States.
  • March 3, 1887 – Anne Sullivan begins teaching six-year-old Helen Keller, who lost her sight and hearing after a severe illness at the age of 19 months. Under Sullivan’s tutelage, including her pioneering “touch teaching” techniques, the previously uncontrollable Keller flourished, eventually graduating from college and becoming an international lecturer and activist.
  • March 2, 1904 – Theodor Geisel, better known to the world as Dr. Seuss, the author and illustrator of such beloved children’s books as “The Cat in the Hat” and “Green Eggs and Ham,” is born in Springfield, Massachusetts.
  • February 27, 1872 – A group of masked and costumed students dance through the streets of New Orleans, Louisiana, marking the beginning of the city’s famous Mardi Gras celebrations.
  • February 26, 1919 and 1929- On this day in history, two national parks were established in the United States 10 years apart–the Grand Canyon in 1919 and the Grand Tetons in 1929.
  • February 25, 1964 – 22-year-old Cassius Clay shocks the odds-makers by dethroning world heavyweight boxing champ Sonny Liston in a seventh-round technical knockout.
  • February 24, 1836 – In San Antonio, Texas, Colonel William Travis issues a call for help on behalf of the Texan troops defending the Alamo, an old Spanish mission and fortress under attack by the Mexican army.
  • February 23, 1945 – During the bloody Battle for Iwo Jima, U.S. Marines from the 3rd Platoon, E Company, 2nd Battalion, 28th Regiment of the 5th Division take the crest of Mount Suribachi, the island’s highest peak and most strategic position, and raise the U.S. flag. Marine photographer Louis Lowery was with them and recorded the event.
  • February 18, 1885 – Mark Twain publishes his famous–and famously controversial–novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
  • February 17, 1904 – Giacomo Puccini’s opera Madame Butterfly premieres at the La Scala theatre in Milan, Italy.
  • February 13, 1633 – Italian philosopher, astronomer and mathematician Galileo Galilei arrives in Rome to face charges of heresy for advocating Copernican theory, which holds that the Earth revolves around the Sun.
  • February 12, 2002 – Former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic goes on trial at The Hague, Netherlands, on charges of genocide and war crimes in Bosnia, Croatia and Kosovo.
  • February 11, 1990 – Nelson Mandela, leader of the movement to end South African apartheid, is released from prison after 27 years.
  • Febuary 10, 1940 – MGM released the animated short “Puss Gets the Boot,” the debut of Tom and Jerry
  • February 9, 1971 – pitcher Leroy “Satchel” Paige becomes the first Negro League veteran to be nominated for the Baseball Hall of Fame.
  • February 6, 1952 – After a long illness, King George VI of Great Britain and Northern Ireland dies in his sleep at the royal estate at Sandringham. Princess Elizabeth, the oldest of the king’s two daughters and next in line to succeed him, was in Kenya at the time of her father’s death; she was crowned Queen Elizabeth II on June 2, 1953, at age 27.
  • February 5, 1994 – White supremacist Byron De La Beckwith is convicted in the murder of African-American civil rights leader Medgar Evers, over 30 years after the crime occurred.
  • Febuary 4, 1889 – Harry Longabaugh is released from Sundance Prison in Wyoming, thereby acquiring the famous nickname, “the Sundance Kid.”
  • Febuary 3, 2005 – Alberto Gonzales won Senate confirmation as the nation’s first Hispanic attorney general despite protests over his record on torture.
  • January 29, 1936 – The U.S. Baseball Hall of Fame elects its first members in Cooperstown, New York: Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Matthewson and Walter Johnson.
  • January 28, 1986 – The space shuttle Challenger lifts off from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Seventy-three seconds later, hundreds on the ground stared in disbelief as the shuttle exploded in a forking plume of smoke and fire. There were no survivors.
  • January 27, 1888 – the National Geographic Society is founded in Washington, D.C., for “the increase and diffusion of geographical knowledge.”
  • January 26, 1788 – Captain Arthur Phillip guides a fleet of 11 British ships carrying convicts to the colony of New South Wales, effectively founding Australia. After overcoming a period of hardship, the fledgling colony began to celebrate the anniversary of this date with great fanfare.
  • January 23, 1849 – On this day English-born Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman in America to receive a medical degree, from the Medical Institution of Geneva, N.Y.
  • January 22, 1998 – On this day in a Sacramento, California, courtroom, Theodore J. Kaczynski pleads guilty to all federal charges against him, acknowledging his responsibility for a 17-year campaign of package bombings attributed to the “Unabomber.”
  • January 21, 1905 – Christian Dior, French fashion designer and creator of the ”New Look” in 1947, was born.
  • January 20, 1981 – Minutes after Ronald Reagan’s inauguration as the 40th president of the United States, the 52 U.S. captives held at the U.S. embassy in Teheran, Iran, are released, ending the 444-day Iran Hostage Crisis.
  • January 16, 1919- The 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, prohibiting the “manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors for beverage purposes,” is ratified on this day in 1919 and becomes the law of the land.