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Today in History

1904
Ice cream cone introduced in St Louis, Mo
1936
Major League Baseball pitching legend, Don Drysdale born in Van Nuys, California
1952
Overthrow of the monarchy in Egypt
1961
Environmentalist, social activist, and Emmy Award winning actor, Woody Harrelson born in Midland, Texas
1966
Actress Samantha Beckinsale born in London, England
1967
Emmy and Academy award winning stage and screen actor, Phillip Seymour Hoffman born in Fairport, New York
1970
Discovered while working as a waitress, actress Charisma Carpenter born in Las Vegas, Nevada
1973
Nixon refuses to turn presidential tapes over to the Senate Watergate Committee
1979
Earth-resources satellite Landsat 1 launched
1989
Stage and film actor, Daniel Radcliffe born in London, England
685
John V becomes Pope
1227
Death of Kiu Chang Chun
1373
Saint Bridget of Sweden dies. The pious and charitable Swede, founder of the Bridgettine Order, is recognized as a major figure in the pope's decision to return to Rome.
1532
Turkish invasion forces Charles V to agree to peace with Protestants
1540
Beheading of Thomas Cromwell
1595
Spanish land in Cornwall, burn Mousehole & Penzance
1599
Caravaggio's 1st public commission for paintings
1623
Virginia colonists attacked by Indians
1626
Shabbetai Tzevi, Jewish false messiah born
1637
Jenny Geddes throws a stool at the Dean of St. Giles Church in Edinburgh, in protest against the new Prayer-book of King Charles I.
1637
A court decision forces King Charles I to hand over the colony of Massachusetts to Sir Ferdinand Gorges, one of the founders of the Council of New England 1637
1649
Pope Clement XI born
1769
Franz Berwald was born in Stockholm. His music went over well in Germany, but in other places it was considered too modern.
1816
Charlotte Sanders Cushman US, actress (Lady MacBeth) born
1827
The first U.S. Swimming School opened in Boston, Massachusetts.
1829
William AustBurt of Mount Vernon, Michigan, received a patent for his "typographer" - a forerunner of the typewriter.
1834
James Cardinal Gibbons archbishop of Baltimore born
1846
William R. Featherstone, Canadian Methodist hymnwriter. He penned thewords to 'My Jesus, I Love Thee' before the age of 16. born
1852
First interment in US National Cemetary at Presidio.
1860
William W. McConnell, missions pioneer. In 1891, he became the first missionary sent out by the Central American Mission, after its founding in 1890. born
1885
Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th president of the United States, died Mount McGregor, New York, at age 63.
1886
New York saloonkeeper Steve Brodie claimed to have made a daredevil plunge from the Brooklyn Bridge into the East River.
1888
Detective novelist Raymond Chandler born
1892
Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie born
1893
Karl Menninger psychiatrist (Menninger Clinic) born
1894
Arthur Treacher Brighton England, announcer (Merv Griffin Show) born
1904
By some accounts, the ice cream cone was invented by Charles E. Menches during the Louisiana Purchase Exposition St. Louis.
1912
On this day in 1912, the opera composer Ethel Smyth was arrested for throwing a brick through the British Home Secretary's window. She was also charged with setting fire to the country home of the Colonial Secretary.
1912
Actor Michael Wilding born
1914
Austria-Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia following the killing of Archduke Francis Ferdinand by a Serb assassin; the dispute led to World War One.
1918
American Baptist clergyman Joseph H. Gilmore dies at the age of 84 . He is remembered today primarily for the hymn, 'He Leadeth Me,' which he wrote at the age of 28.
1925
Actress Gloria DeHaven born
1928
Actor Calvert DeForest ("Late Show with David Letterman") born
1936
Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy born
1936
Don Drysdale, pitcher (LA Dodgers-Cy Young 1962) born
1940
Radio personality Don Imus (AM TV on MSNBC) born
1943
Country singer Tony Joe White born
1947
Actor Larry Manetti ("Magnum, P.I.") born
1947
Rock singer David Essex born
1950
Rock musician Blair Thornton (Bachman Turner Overdrive) born
1950
Actress Belinda Montgomery born
1952
Egyptian military officers led by Gamal Abdel Nasser overthrew King Farouk the First.
1957
Actress-writer Lydia Cornell born
1961
Actor Woody Harrelson (Cheers) born
1961
Rock musician Martin Gore (Depeche Mode) born
1962
Actor Eriq Lasalle ("E-R") born
1963
Rock musician Yuval Gabay (Soul Coughing) born
1964
Rock musician Nick Menza (Megadeth) born
1965
Rock musician Slash born
1967
Rioting that claimed some 43 lives erupted Detroit.
1970
Rhythm-and-blues singer Sam Watters (Color Me Badd) born
1970
Actress Charisma Carpenter ("Buffy the Vampire Slayer") born
1971
Rhythm-and-blues singer Mr. Dalvin (Jodeci) born
1971
Country singer Alison Krauss born
1971
Rock musician Chad Gracey (Live) born
1972
Actor-comedian Marlon Wayans ("The Wayans Brothers") born
1973
Actor Omar Epps ("Scream 2") born
1973
Country singer Shannon Brown born
1973
Watergate special prosecutor Archibald Cox served subpoenas on the White House after President Nixon refused to turn over tapes and documents.
1974
Actress Stephanie March born
1977
A Washington DC jury convicted 12 Hanafi Muslims of charges stemming from the hostage siege at three buildings the previous March.
1979
Ayatollah Ruhallah Khomeini, who overthrew the Shah of Iran and made his country a theocracy, laid down the law on music. He said, "Music is no different from opium. Music affects the human mind in a way that makes people think of nothing but music and sensual matters."
1980
Rhythm-and-blues singer Michelle Williams (Destiny's Child) born
1980
The USSR's Soyuz 37 was launched. On board were cosmonauts Viktor Gorbato and Lt. Col. Pham Tuan: The first non-Caucasian in space.
1982
TV star Vic Morrow and two child actors were killed when a helicopter disabled by special effects explosives crashed on the set of "The Twilight Zone" movie.
1983
President Reagan appealed in his weekly radio address for a donor liver to save the life of Ashley Bailey, an 11-month-old girl at a Minneapolis hospital. A donor could not be found; Ashley died in November.
1984
After "Penthouse" published nude photos of Vanessa Williams, she resigned her title of Miss America. Thus she became the first Miss America to resign her title.
1985
President Reagan, just out of the hospital for cancer surgery, met with Chinese President Li Xiannian at the White House, where they approved the signing of a nuclear cooperation agreement.
1985
Bandleader Kay Kyser, known for his "Kollege of Musical Knowledge," died in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
1986
Britain's Prince Andrew married Sarah Ferguson at Westminster Abbey London. (The couple divorced 1996.)
1987
President Reagan named nearly a dozen people to complete the ranks of his commission on the deadly illness AIDS.
1987
Billy William, Catfish Hunter and Ray Dandridge were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.
1988
In his weekly radio address, President Reagan responded to the just-completed Democratic national convention by accusing the Democrats of "singing the same sad song they sang four years ago."
1989
In a stunning defeat, Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party lost its majority in the upper house of the Diet in parliamentary elections, prompting Prime Minister Sousuke Uno to resign the next day.
1989
Greg LeMond of the United States won the Tour de France.
1990
President Bush announced his choice of Judge David Souter of New Hampshire to succeed retiring Justice William J. Brennan on the U.S. Supreme Court.
1991
The Senate voted to impose a long list of strict new conditions on renewal of China's normal trade status in 1992. However, the 55-44 vote fell short of the 2/3 majority later needed to override President Bush's veto.
1991
The Soviet government applied for full membership to the IMF and World Bank after the Group of Seven recommended a limited "special association" for the USSR.
1992
Secretary of State James A. Baker the Third, touring the Middle East, made a secret visit to Lebanon.
1992
AIDS experts meeting in Amsterdam expressed alarm over possible reports of an AIDS-like illness in people not infected with the AIDS virus, HIV.
1992
Israel's new government canceled plans to build more than 6,600 housing units in the occupied territories.
1993
Surgeon General-designate Joycelyn Elders stuck to her firm stands on sex education and AIDS prevention in a one-day confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill.
1993
White House deputy counsel Vincent W. Foster Junior was buried near Hope, Arkansas, three days after taking his own life in a Virginia park.
1993
James Jordan, father of basketball star Michael Jordan, was murdered near Bennettsville, South Carolina.
1994
The space shuttle Columbia returned to Earth after a 15-day mission which included experiments on the effects of weightlessness on aquatic animals.
1995
In a new get-tough approach, the United Nations ordered the first combat unit from its rapid reaction force to Sarajevo to take out any rebel Serb guns that fired at U.N. peacekeepers.
1996
The U.S. Senate passed a welfare overhaul bill.
1996
At the Atlanta Olympics, Kerri Strug made a heroic final vault despite torn ligaments in her left ankle as the U.S. women gymnasts clinched their first-ever Olympic gold medal.
1997
The search for Andrew Cunanan, the suspected killer of designer Gianni Versace and others, ended as police found his body on a houseboat in Miami Beach, Florida, an apparent suicide.
1998
Scientists at the University of Hawaii announced they had turned out more than 50 carbon-copy mice, with a cloning technique said to be more reliable than the one used to create Dolly the sheep.
1999
Space shuttle Columbia blasted off with the world's most powerful X-ray telescope and Eileen Collins, the first woman to command a U.S. space flight.
1999
Morocco's King Hassan II died at age 70.
1999
Woodstock '99 opened in Rome, New York.
1999
Members of the Kennedy family gathered in New York City for a private memorial Mass a week after John F. Kennedy Jr., his wife, Carolyn, and her sister, Lauren Bessette, died in a plane crash off Martha's Vineyard.
2000
President Clinton rejoined the troubled Middle East talks at Camp David after hurrying back from a four-day trip to Asia.
2000
Leaders of the major industrial countries concluded their summit in Japan by announcing a campaign to slash the number of deaths worldwide from AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
2000
Tiger Woods, at 24, became the youngest player to win the career Grand Slam with a record-breaking performance in the British Open. Karrie Webb, 25, won the US Women's Open.
2005
Execution of two gay teens in Iran spurs controversy
2005
'Incident' at East London tube station
2005
Inter Milan cancels tour of England due to safety concerns
2005
Capitol Hill Democrats hold informal hearing on Plame leak
2005
Space Shuttle Discovery launch scheduled for Tuesday
2005
Man shot on London Underground unconnected to bombing, says Scotland Yard
2006
Saddam Hussein taken to hospital
2006
U.S. expedites bombs shipment to Israel, outcry in the Muslim world
2006
Lebanon faces humanitarian crisis
2006
Human Rights Watch: US abuse of Iraqi prisoners continues
2006
Earthquake strikes off Indonesia
2006
Latvian anti-gay protesters attack gay activists
2006
Thai king endorses October 15 general election rerun
2007
Tour de France: Alexandre Vinokourov wins stage 15
2007
Libya lifts death sentences for nurses but makes demands
2007
Cricket: England draw Test series opener with India
2007
Fox News security hole exposes 1.5 million users' personal information
2007
Work begins on "Lisbon Treaty"
2007
Minor league baseball coach killed on field in United States
2007
AKP secures mandate in Turkish general election
2008
Nationalised UK bank Northern Rock appoints new chief executive
2008
Second Arab-Israeli bulldozer attack in July 2008
2008
Rhode Island man arrested with record blood-alcohol reading
2008
Trio found with €440 million of cocaine receive a total of 85 years imprisonment
2008
China to establish protest zones for Olympics
2008
Chinese police offer 300,000 yuan reward in double bus bombings
2009
65-year-old woman arrested over the death of two Mexican wrestlers
2009
Taco Bell mascot Gidget dies from stroke at 15
2009
British schoolboy found guilty of racial harassment of schoolgirl
2009
Rugby Union: Queensland's Ballymore Cup quarter finals
2009
Ivory Coast fined US$47,000 by FIFA over March stampede
2009
Canberra's Sophie Lavers crowned Miss World Australia
2009
Vestas occupation continues; left-wing political parties voice support
2010
Typhoon kills two in southern China
2010
Weather bureau forecasts an early spring for Australia
2010
Family of five killed in Staten Island, NY house fire

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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