Today in History
Today in History
Today is Thursday, June 29, the 180th day of 2017. There are 185 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 29, 1767, Britain approved the Townshend Revenue Act, which imposed import duties on glass, paint, oil, lead, paper and tea shipped to the American colonies. (Colonists bitterly protested, prompting Parliament to repeal the duties — except for tea.)
On this date:
In 1613, London’s original Globe Theatre, where many of Shakespeare’s plays were performed, was destroyed by a fire sparked by a cannon shot during a performance of “Henry VIII.”
In 1880, France annexed Tahiti, which became a French colony on December 30, 1880.
In 1927, the first trans-Pacific airplane flight was completed as Lt. Lester J. Maitland and Lt. Albert F. Hegenberger arrived at Wheeler Field in Hawaii aboard the Bird of Paradise, an Atlantic-Fokker C-2, after flying 2,400 miles from Oakland, California, in 25 hours, 50 minutes.
In 1936, entertainer and songwriter George M. Cohan was presented with the Congressional Gold Medal by President Franklin D. Roosevelt for his contributions to building American morale during World War I.
In 1941, Polish statesman, pianist and composer Ignacy Jan Paderewski (een-YAHS’ yahn pah-dayr-EF’-skee) died in New York at age 80.
In 1956, actress Marilyn Monroe married playwright Arthur Miller in a civil ceremony in White Plains, New York. (The couple also wed in a Jewish ceremony on July 1; the marriage lasted 4 1/2 years).
In 1967, actress Jayne Mansfield, 34, was killed along with her boyfriend, Sam Brody, and their driver, Ronnie Harrison, when their car slammed into the rear of a tractor-trailer on a highway in Slidell, Louisiana; three children riding in the back, including Mansfield’s 3-year-old daughter, Mariska Hargitay, survived. Jerusalem was re-unified as Israel removed barricades separating the Old City from the Israeli sector.
In 1972, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a trio of death sentences, saying the way they had been imposed constituted cruel and unusual punishment. (The ruling prompted states to effectively impose a moratorium on executions until their capital punishment laws could be revised.)
In 1988, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Morrison v. Olson, upheld the independent counsel law in a 7-1 decision (the sole dissenter was Justice Antonin Scalia).
In 1992, the remains of Polish statesman Ignacy Jan Paderewski (een-YAHS’ yahn pah-dayr-EF’-skee), interred for five decades in the United States, were returned to his homeland in keeping with his wish to be buried only in a free Poland.
In 1995, the space shuttle Atlantis and the Russian Mir space station linked in orbit, beginning a historic five-day voyage as a single ship. A department store in Seoul (sohl), South Korea, collapsed, killing at least 500 people. Actress Lana Turner died in Century City, California, at age 74.
In 2003, actress Katharine Hepburn died in Old Saybrook, Connecticut, at age 96.
Ten years ago: British police defused two car bombs left to blow up near packed nightclubs and pubs in central London. The first generation of Apple iPhones went on sale. Death claimed movie critic Joel Siegel at age 63 and George McCorkle, a founding member of the Marshall Tucker Band, at age 60.
Five years ago: A day after the House voted to find Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress, the Justice Department said Holder’s decision to withhold information about a bungled gun-tracking operation from Congress did not constitute a crime, and that he would not be prosecuted. The younger brother and business partner of disgraced financier Bernard Madoff pleaded guilty to charges of doctoring documents for years, but Peter Madoff insisted he knew nothing about his brother’s massive Ponzi scheme. (Peter Madoff was later sentenced to 10 years in prison.) The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency filed formal charges against Lance Armstrong, accusing the seven-time Tour de France winner of using performance-enhancing drugs throughout the best years of his career. (The USADA ended up stripping Armstrong of all his Tour de France titles and issued a lifetime ban from cycling.)
One year ago: President Barack Obama and the leaders of Mexico and Canada, meeting in Ottawa, pushed back forcefully against the isolationist and anti-immigrant sentiments roiling Britain and championed by GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump. First lady Michelle Obama, accompanied by daughters Malia and Sasha, arrived in Spain on the final leg of a three-nation tour to promote her global girls’ education initiative.
Today’s Birthdays: Movie producer Robert Evans is 87. Songwriter L. Russell Brown is 77. Singer-songwriter Garland Jeffreys is 74. Actor Gary Busey is 73. Comedian Richard Lewis is 70. Actor-turned-politican-turned-radio personality Fred Grandy is 69. Rock musician Ian Paice (Deep Purple) is 69. Singer Don Dokken (Dokken) is 64. Rock singer Colin Hay (Men At Work) is 64. Actress Maria Conchita Alonso is 62. Actress Sharon Lawrence is 56. Actress Amanda Donohoe is 55. Actress Judith Hoag is 54. Violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter is 54. Rhythm-and-blues singer Stedman Pearson (Five Star) is 53. Actress Kathleen Wilhoite is 53. Producer-writer Matthew Weiner is 52. Musician Dale Baker is 51. Actress Melora Hardin is 50. Actor Brian D’Arcy James is 49. Rap DJ Shadow is 45. Actor-dancer Will Kemp is 40. Actress Zuleikha Robinson is 40. Country musician Todd Sansom (Marshall Dyllon) is 39. Singer Nicole Scherzinger is 39. Comedian-writer Colin Jost (johst) is 35. Actress Lily Rabe is 35. Rhythm-and-blues singer Aundrea Fimbres is 34.
Thought for Today: “I have many regrets, and I’m sure everyone does. The stupid things you do, you regret if you have any sense, and if you don’t regret them, maybe you’re stupid.” — Katharine Hepburn (1907-2003).