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Today in History

1863
Anti-draft riots begin in New York City
1908
Women compete in Olympic games
1930
First World Cup soccer match
1940
Stage, movie, and television actor, Patrick Stewart born in Mirfield, England
1942
Sportscaster, gutbucket player and Academy Award nominated actor, Harrison Ford born in Chicago, Illinois
1946
Actor and comedian Richard Anthony "Cheech" Marin born in Los Angeles, California
1951
Actress Didi Conn born in Brooklyn, New York
1977
25 hour power outage in New York City results in looting, disorder and arson
2013
Jury finds George Zimmerman not guilty in shooting death of Trayvon Martin
505
Death of St. Eugenius of Carthage
939
Pope Leo VII born
1105
Death of Rashi, medieval Jewish Bible scholar. His name is a Hebrew acrostic for Rabbi Shelomoh ben Isaac. Rashi was the leading rabbinic commentator in his day on the Old Testament and Talmud.
1234
St. Dominic, founder of the Dominicans, was canonized.
1249
Coronation of Alexander III, King of Scotland
1380
Death of Bertrand Du Guesclin, Constable of France
1527
John Dee English alchemist, astrologer, and mathematician who contributed greatly to the revival of interest in mathematics in England. born
1530
Death of Quentin Massys
1534
Ottoman armies take Tabriz, Persia
1568
Dean of St. Paul's Cathedral perfects a way to bottle beer
1573
Haarlem surrenders to the Spanish army; a massacre follows
1585
Sir Richard Grenville's expedition reaches Roanoke Island
1590
Pope Clement X born
1608
Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor . He headed the so-called peace party at the Habsburg imperial court during the Thirty Years' War and ended that war in 1648 with the Peace of Westphalia. born
1610
Death of St. Francis Solano
1621
Death of the Archduke Albert of the Catholic Netherlands
1643
In the English Civil War, the Cavaliers take an early victory over Oliver Cromell's Roundheads at Roundway Down.
1658
Massachusetts Bay Colony annexes Casco Bay, now in Maine
1769
Thomas Kelly, Irish Episcopal clergyman and author of 765 hymns,including: 'Praise the Savior, Ye Who Know Him.' born
1787
Congress enacted an ordinance governing the Northwest Territory.
1793
English rural poet John Clare. He continued to write verse after his confinement to a mental institution. born
1793
French revolutionary writer Jean Paul Marat was stabbed to death in his bath by Charlotte Corday, who was executed four days later. (Marat's slaying is depicted in the famous painting by Jacques Louis David.)
1811
Sir George Gilbert Scott, English architect and advocate of the Gothic revival style. born
1821
Confederate cavalry commander Nathan Bedford Forrest was born in Bedford County, Tennessee. He is attributed (or misquoted) as saying that the essence of warfare is to "get there the firstest with the mostest men." After the war he gained infamy by lending his name to the establishment of the Ku Klux Klan.
1859
Sidney Webb, English economist and socialist - founder of the Fabian Society. born
1859
Mexican revolutionary President Benito Juarez ordered property of the Roman Catholic Church confiscated throughout Mexico.
1863
Rioting against the Civil War military draft erupted in New York City; the violence resulted in the deaths of about one-thousand people over three days.
1865
Horace Greeley advises his readers to "Go west".
1878
The Treaty of Berlin amended the terms of the Treaty of San Stefano, which had ended the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78.
1883
General Tom Thumb dies. The circus midget was age 45.
1886
Father Edward Flanagan, American Catholic parish priest. Believing there was 'no such thing as a bad boy,' in 1922 he organized Boys Town near Omaha, Nebraska. born
1901
Mickey Walker, also called The Toy Bulldog U.S. professional boxer, a colourful sports figure of the 1920s and early 1930s. born
1913
Television broadcaster Dave Garroway born
1921
Charles Scribner, Jr. U.S. publisher who was head, 1952-84, of the Charles Scribner's Sons book publishing company, which had been founded by his great-grandfather, and personal editor of Ernest Hemingway's works. born
1921
Film score composer Ernest Gold. He wrote the score for Exodus in 1960. born
1930
The first World Cup Soccer contest is held in Montevideo, Uruguay.
1935
Former Housing Secretary Jack Kemp born
1935
Strauss was fired from his post as general director of the Nazi Recishmusikhammer because the Nazis got hold of a letter he wrote, deriding the idea that he, Mozart, or any other Germanic composer was thinking of his Germanness while composing.
1940
Actor Patrick Stewart born
1941
Actor Robert Forster born
1942
Actor Harrison Ford born
1942
Singer-guitarist Roger McGuinn (The Byrds) born
1943
The Nazis actually executed a Munich musicologist because they caught him distributing literature criticizing Hitler.
1944
Erno Rubik - inventor of the Rubik'c cube puzzle. born
1946
Actor-comedian Cheech Marin born
1947
Europe accepts the Marshall plan to aid European recovery following WW2.
1951
Actress Didi Conn born
1951
Austrian born composer, Arnold Schoenberg dies. He is best known for his atonal works.
1954
Singer Louise Mandrell born
1957
Actor-director Cameron Crowe born
1960
Massachusetts Senator John F. Kennedy won the Democratic presidential nomination at his party's convention in Los Angeles.
1961
Tennis player Anders Jarryd born
1962
Country singer-songwriter Victoria Shaw born
1965
Actor Michael Jace born
1965
Country singer Neil Thrasher (Thrasher Shriver) born
1966
Singer Gerald Levert born
1967
Race-related rioting broke out in Newark, New Jersey; by the time the violence ended July 17th, 27 people had been killed.
1971
Rhythm-and-blues singers Lovell and Laval Jones (Twice) born
1973
Singer Deborah Cox born
1977
A 25-hour blackout hit the New York City area after lightning struck upstate power lines.
1978
Lee Iacocca was fired as president of Ford Motor Company by chairman Henry Ford the Second.
1979
A 45-hour siege began at the Egyptian Embassy in Ankara, Turkey, as four Palestinian guerrillas killed two security men and seized 20 hostages.
1983
The Senate approved, 50-49, the production of nerve gas weaponry, with Vice President George Bush casting the tie-breaking vote.
1984
Walter F. Mondale, the Democratic presidential nominee-apparent, launched his fall campaign in his boyhood hometown of Elmore, Minnesota, with his newly chosen running mate, Geraldine A. Ferraro.
1985
Arthur Ashe was the first black to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.
1985
More than 50 rock stars performed a total of 17 hours at televised "Live Aid" concerts in Philadelphia and London to raise money for African famine relief.
1986
Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze flew to London for two days of talks with British officials, the first such visit by a Soviet foreign minister in more than a decade.
1987
Jury selection began in Washington for the perjury trial of President Reagan's former aide and longtime confidant, Michael K. Deaver. (Deaver was later convicted of lying under oath about his lobbying business; he was fined $100,000 and ordered to perform community service.)
1988
Final results of Mexico's recent presidential election were released, giving the victory to the candidate of the governing party, Carlos Salinas de Gortari. Opponents charged that the election had been stolen.
1989
Washington DC attorney Thomas L. Root was rescued after ditching his private plane into the Atlantic Ocean near the Bahamas; he had suffered a mysterious gunshot wound. Cuba executed four military officers for conspiring to smuggle drugs to the United States.
1990
The Senate gave final legislative approval to a bill that would forbid discrimination based on disability, including that caused by AIDS or alcoholism.
1990
President of the Russian republic Boris Yeltsin resigns from the Communist Party.
1991
Soviet and American negotiators meeting in Washington wrangled over a treaty to reduce long-range nuclear missiles.
1992
Democrats opened their 41st national convention at New York's Madison Square Garden with speakers who taunted George Bush as a failed president ripe for defeat in November.
1993
The American League defeated the National League in the All-Star Game, 9-to-3, in Baltimore.
1993
Race car driver Davey Allison died in Birmingham, Alabama, of injuries suffered in a helicopter crash.
1993
It was an all-Samuel Barber program at Tanglewood . Members of the Boston Symphony Chamber players joined with baritone Thomas Hampson and pianist John Browning to presented "Dover Beach," selected songs, and Barber's sole piano sonata.
1994
President Clinton visited flood-stricken Georgia, where he announced more than $60 million dollars in aid for Georgia, Alabama and Florida.
1994
Tonya Harding's ex-husband, Jeff Gillooly, was sentenced in Portland, Oregon, to two years in prison for his role in the attack on Nancy Kerrigan (he ended up serving six months).
1995
Just six days after the space shuttle Atlantis returned, the shuttle Discovery blasted off on a nine-day mission.
1995
President Clinton denounced a base-closing list for the damage it would do to California and Texas, but then approved the package while promising to save jobs in those states.
1995
About 2,500 workers at Detroit's daily newspapers, the "Detroit Free Press" and "The Detroit News," went on strike.
1996
At least half a million "ravers" danced around Berlin to the pulsating beats of techno music for the "Love Parade" festival, making the event one of the largest public gatherings in the city's post-war history.
1996
After battering the Carolina Coast, the weakened remnants of Hurricane "Bertha" moved north, spawning tornadoes and dumping rain from Maryland to Massachusetts.
1997
Secretary of State Madeleine Albright returned to her Jewish roots in the Czech Republic, finding the names of family members killed by the Nazis inscribed on a Prague synagogue wall. (News reports the previous February revealed that Albright, who'd been raised a Roman Catholic, had Jewish relatives, many of whom died in the Holocaust.)
1998
A jury in Poughkeepsie, New York, ruled that the Reverend Al Sharpton and two others had defamed a former prosecutor by accusing him of raping Tawana Brawley.
1998
Four young cousins in Gallup, New Mexico, died after becoming trapped in a car trunk.
1999
Angel Maturino Resendiz, suspected of being the "railroad killer," surrendered in El Paso, Texas. In Tehran, police fired tear gas to disperse 10,000 demonstrators on the sixth day of protests against Iranian hard-liners.
1999
The American League won the All-Star game for the third straight time, defeating the National League 4-1 at Boston's Fenway Park.
2000
Fellow Democrat Bill Bradley endorsed Vice President Al Gore for president, four months after conceding their fight for the White House.
2000
Fiji's coup leaders released their remaining 18 captives, ending a two-month-old parliamentary hostage crisis.
2005
Australian telecomms firm Telstra offers rebates to those affected by bombings
2005
Train crash in southern Pakistan kills more than a hundred
2005
Israeli army reoccupies Tulkarem in West Bank
2005
Children massacred in Kenyan school
2005
Baghdad barbers threatened with death for cutting beards
2005
Nurse glues boyfriend's eyes shut
2005
Shuttle launch on schedule despite launch pad accident
2005
Shuttle launch called off due to faulty fuel tank sensor
2005
Suicide bomber kills 24 children in Iraq
2005
Italian police launch nationwide anti-terror sweep
2005
Study: Socialized Canadian surgery half the U.S. cost with same results
2005
Rape suspect, 14, questioned longer
2005
Former WorldCom CEO Ebbers sentenced to 25 years
2005
Family dog missing after protecting kids from bear
2006
Several injured in Ben Nevis cable car accident
2006
Investigation into Mumbai train bombings begins
2006
Elmwood Village Hotel proposal in Buffalo, N.Y. withdrawn
2006
Three die in crash of Canadian Search and Rescue Helicopter
2006
White House accepts judicial review of NSA eavesdropping
2006
FIFA launch disciplinary proceedings against Marco Materazzi
2006
Day of attacks continue in Israel and Lebanon
2006
Microsoft and Yahoo! link their instant messaging services
2006
Israeli vessels enter Lebanese waters to enforce blockade
2007
Network Rail employee arrested in connection with Cumbrian train crash
2007
Christian protesters try to disrupt first Hindu prayer in US Senate
2007
BBC apologises to Queen Elizabeth II for misrepresentation in documentary
2007
Pamplona's famous "running of the bulls" in pictures
2007
Party video game banned in UK for having offensive word
2007
International media mogul Conrad Black convicted of fraud
2007
Argentine Supreme Court declares Riveros pardon unconstitutional
2007
US House votes to bring troops home from Iraq
2007
Tour de France: Tom Boonen wins stage 6
2007
International Festival of Cinema "Oberá en cortos" begins
2007
AFC Asian Cup: Thailand defeat Oman, Qatar draw with Vietnam
2008
Volcano erupts in the Aleutian Islands
2008
Media reports: Israeli warplanes training in Iraq
2008
Sixteen killed in Pakistan during Taliban ambush
2008
Bobby Murcer, former New York Yankees player dead at 62
2008
Two found dead at Norway Rock Festival
2008
Three hostages return home to Florida
2008
Bronisław Geremek, former Polish Foreign Affairs Minister, dies at age 76
2008
World Health Organization: Stay away from Ugandan caves
2009
Flash flooding kills fourteen hikers near Chongqing, China
2009
North Korean leader Kim Jong-il 'has cancer'
2009
Former Lebanese Prime Minister Amin al-Hafez dies at age 83
2009
Mark Webber wins German Formula One Grand Prix
2010
Six H1N1 cases appear in the Philippines
2010
Switzerland sets Polish film director Roman Polanski free
2010
Australia's Governor-General cuts trip short over looming election
2010
ARM: worst year for Afghanistan since US invasion
2013
Luxembourg head of government resigns after eighteen years

In the early days of Unix, a date-tagged list of historical events was used by system administrators to add some interest to the system's Message of the Day. Whenever users logged in they would be presented with the latest system notices, perhaps some mildly amusing quotes and one or two lines of historical events, based on the current date.

Today in History (UNIX calendar) uses some of the entries from the original library but is updated with current events as well. Instead of plain text, each entry is now formatted in HTML and each day may include one or more icons of historical figures or celebrities.

Other things unique to the UNIX calendar are references to dates found in fictional literature such as Lord of the Rings, perhaps undue emphasis on people and events that were part of popular culture in the 70's and technical minutiae about computers and operating systems that might not be found in other places.

In association with Amazon, this symbol is a link to related products at amazon.com. Any proceeds resulting from the sales of these products are used to defray the cost of maintaining the Today in History site and editorial efforts.

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