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Today in History

1903
Author of Nineteen Eighty Four, George Orwell born Eric Arthur Blair in Morihari, India
1925
Tony Award winning actress, June Lockhart born in New York City
1945
Academy, Golden Globe and Grammy Award winning musician, songwriter and singer, Carly Simon born in New York City
1949
Miss Texas, Miss America and television personality, Phyllis George born in Denton, Texas
1950
North Korea invades South Korea
1975
Independence Day in Mozambique
1998
US Supreme Court rules Line Item Veto Act of 1996 unconstitutional
930
Death of Fr. Hucbald
1080
Election of Pope Clement III (Antipope)
1178
The monks of Canterbury, England, report seeing an explosion on the Moon
1291
Death of Queen Eleanor, widow of Henry III, King of England
1471
Michelozzo di Bartolomeo completes the lantern of the Duomo in Florence
1483
Richard III claims the Crown of England
1503
Betrothal of Catherine of Aragon to Henry VIII of England
1513
Confession of Augsburg, the distinct break between Catholicisim and Protestantisim
1591
Euphame MacCalyean burned alive in Scotland for witchcraft
1594
Margrett Fray and Agatha Birenseng burned as witches
1607
Mentally ill emperor Rudolf II signs Treaty of Lieben, giving up Austria, Hungary & Moravia.
1635
The island of Martinique becomes property of France
1767
Georg Philipp Telemann died, in Hamburg. In his lifetime Telemann was more prominent than Bach. Later, his reputation suffered in part because he wrote so very much stuff that nobody could go through it all. Nevertheless, some of his better compositions are very good indeed.
1788
The state of Virginia ratified the US Constitution.
1868
Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina were re-admitted to the Union.
1876
Gen. George Custer and his force of 208 men were annihilated by Chief Sitting Bull's Sioux warriors at Little Big Horn in Montana.
1887
Broadway producer George Abbott (The Pajama Game, Damn Yankees, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum) born
1894
Hermann Oberth, founder of modern astronautics. born
1903
English novelist and critic George Orwell, author of "1984" born
1906
A love triangle came to a violent end atop New York's Madison Square Garden as architect Stanford White, the building's designer, was shot to death by Harry Thaw, the jealous husband of Evelyn Nesbit.
1911
William Howard Stein - Biochemist, discovered the structure of enzyme (Nobel 1972) born
1924
Movie director Sidney Lumet born
1925
Actress June Lockhart born
1928
Pierre "Peyo" Culliford (Smurfs creator) born
1929
President Hoover authorized construction of Boulder (Hoover) Dam.
1933
Civil rights advocate James Meredith born
1935
Rhythm-and-blues singer Eddie Floyd born
1938
R.C., "A Tisket A Tasket" hits #1 on the pop singles chart by Ella Fitzgerald with Chick Webb.
1942
Basketball Hall-of-Famer Willis Reed born
1942
General Dwight Eisenhower is appointed commander of U.S. troops in Europe.
1942
Some one-thousand British Royal Air Force bombers raided Bremen, Germany, during World War Two.
1945
Pop singer Carly Simon born
1946
Rock musician Ian McDonald (Foreigner; King Crimson) born
1948
Actor-director Michael Lembeck born
1949
Jimmie Walker DYN-O-MITE! born
1949
T-V personality Phyllis George born
1950
North Korean forces invaded South Korea.
1951
The first commercial color telecast took place as CBS transmitted a one-hour special from New York to four other cities.
1952
Rock singer Tim Finn (Split Enz; Crowded House) born
1954
Arlene Dahl wed Fernando Lamas
1955
Michael Sabatino born
1962
The U.S. Supreme Court handed down a decision interpreted as barring prayer in public schools.
1963
Everyone knows "An American in Paris." What is less well-known is that the American George Gershwin got a reply. Darius Milhaud composed something called "A Frenchman in New York." It was premiered not by the New York Philharmonic, but rather by the Boston Pops.
1963
Rock singer George Michael born
1967
The Beatles performed their new song, "All You Need Is Love," during a live international telecast.
1968
Rapper Candyman born
1971
Musician Sean Kelly (Sixpence None the Richer) born
1975
The People's Republic of Mozambique came into being, ending nearly five centuries of Portuguese rule.
1977
Pink Floyd's "Animals" concert at the Cleveland Stadium sets an international attendance record for tickets sold for one act.
1977
R.C., "Gonna Fly Now (Theme From Rocky)" by Maynard Ferguson peaked at #29 on the pop singles chart.
1981
The Supreme Court decided that male-only draft registration was constitutional.
1983
In Krefeld, West Germany, hundreds of masked youths battled riot police and hurled debris at Vice President George Bush's motocade during ceremonies saluting German-American friendship.
1985
The New York Yankees announced that the team's bat boys were to wear protective helmets during all games. Bat boy Butch Wynegar had been hit by a line-drive foul ball while in the on-deck circle.
1986
In a victory for President Reagan, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 221-to-209 to approve his request for $100 million in military and humanitarian aid to the Nicaraguan contras.
1987
Pope John Paul the Second received Austrian President Kurt Waldheim at the Vatican, a meeting fraught with controversy because of allegations that Waldheim had hidden a Nazi past.
1988
American-born Mildred Gillars, better known during World War Two as "Axis Sally" for her Nazi propaganda broadcasts, died in Columbus, Ohio, at age 87. (Gillars had served 12 years in prison for treason.)
1988
The hottest temperature ever recorded in Cleveland occurs (104 degrees).
1988
Roger Rabbit Cartoon Character debuts in the Walt Disney movie 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit?' which also featured a multitude of cartoon characters circa 1948. Even the Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote were there though they didn't debut until 1949.
1989
A judge in Cincinnati temporarily blocked a hearing by baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti into allegations that Cincinnati Reds manager Pete Rose had gambled on baseball games.
1990
African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela met with President Bush at the White House.
1990
NBC decided to air episodes of "Quantum Leep" for 5 straight days.
1990
The U.S. Supreme Court, in its first "right-to-die" decision, ruled that family members can be barred from ending the lives of persistently comatose relatives who have not made their wishes known conclusively.
1991
Following months of unsuccessful talks among Yugoslavia's six republics about the future of the federation, the western republics of Croatia and Slovenia declared their independence.
1992
Both houses of Congress rushed to pass a back-to-work order ending a national rail strike. President Bush signed it in the early hours of June 26.
1992
The space shuttle "Columbia," carrying seven astronauts, blasted off on a two-week mission.
1993
Kim Campbell was sworn in as Canada's 19th prime minister, the first woman to hold the post.
1993
The trustees of the Chicago Symphony okayed the renovation and expansion of Orchestra Hall. The plan is to demolish a building next-door to make room for a new wing. The stage will be expanded to accommodate larger performances.
1993
Vice President Al Gore broke the tie vote, giving President Clinton a victory for his massive budget-cutting package with tax increases on the wealthy and cuts in Medicare.
1993
David Letterman taped his last "Late Night With David Letterman" variety talk show for NBC-TV before moving to CBS-TV August 30
1993
"Sleepless In Seattle" starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan opened in theaters.
1994
111 degrees F (43.9 degrees C) at El Paso Texas.
1994
Japanese Prime Minister Tsutomu Hata, faced with certain defeat in a no-confidence vote, announced his intention to resign after just two months in office.
1994
Cleveland Indians 18 game home win streak ends with a loss to Yanks 11-6.
1995
Haiti held its first free election in five years.
1995
Warren E. Burger, the 15th chief justice of the United States, died in Washington of congestive heart failure at age 87.
1995
In an attempt to provide a more humanized view of their client, attorneys for Oklahoma City bombing suspect Timothy McVeigh released photos and videotape showing McVeigh smiling and relaxed.
1996
A truck bomb killed 19 Americans and injured hundreds at a US military housing complex in Saudi Arabia.
1997
An unmanned cargo ship crashed into Russia's "Mir" space station, knocking out half of the station's power and rupturing a pressurized laboratory.
1997
The Supreme Court struck down the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, designed to limit government's ability to regulate religious practices.
1997
Oceanographer Jacques-Yves Cousteau died in Paris at age 87.
1998
The Supreme Court rejected a 1997 line-item veto law as unconstitutional, and ruled that HIV-infected people are protected by the Americans With Disabilities Act.
1998
President Clinton began a nine-day trip to China in the city of Xi'an.
1999
The San Antonio Spurs won their first NBA title as they defeated the New York Knicks, 78-77, in game five of their championship series.
1999
During a news conference, President Clinton said the people of Serbia had to "get out of denial" about the atrocities blamed on Slobodan Milosevic and decide if he was fit to remain president of Yugoslavia.
2000
Philip Morris announced it was buying Nabisco for $14.9 billion.
2000
South Korea marked the 50th anniversary of the start of the Korean Conflict.
2000
Juli Inkster became the first player in 16 years to successfully defend the LPGA Championship.
2000
Live-fire training resumed on the Vieques, Puerto Rico, range in the largest naval exercises since a fatal accident prompted a yearlong occupation by protesters.
2005
Hardliner wins Iran presidential runoff
2005
Serbian Parliament members accuse NGOs of anti-Serbian campaign
2005
Arrest warrants issued in Italy for 13 alleged CIA people on kidnapping charges
2005
Second case of BSE confirmed in U.S.
2005
Nigeria's past rulers stole $400 billion in public money
2005
Elections held in Bulgaria
2005
Tom Cruise debates psychiatry on NBC's Today show
2005
Guidant announces more defibrillator problems
2005
Dresdener Elbe Valley becomes UNESCO World Heritage site
2006
France defeat South Africa 36 - 26 in rugby
2006
All Blacks hold off Argentina in rugby
2006
U.S. president attends White House tee ball game
2006
Arcelor declares merger with Mittal Steel
2006
Ex CIA aide: Tenet misled Powell on evidence for mobile labs
2006
Hubble Space Telescope's main camera stops working
2006
Fernando Alonso wins Canadian Grand Prix
2006
Pelicans held on suspicion of being drunk
2006
Car women's rugby 7's tournament
2006
Australia defeats Ireland 37-15 in rugby
2006
England do enough against Ecuador; through to quarter-final
2006
Portugal overcome Netherlands 1-0 on way to quarter-final
2007
Heavy rain causes severe flooding in UK
2007
United States wins CONCACAF Gold Cup
2007
Plane with Korean, Czech tourists aboard crashes in Cambodia
2007
Audio tape released of missing Israeli soldier
2007
Voting causes woman to face deportation from US
2007
North Korea confirms receipt of funds, nuclear shutdown to proceed
2007
Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission to review Pan Am Flight 103 conviction
2007
Four families left homeless after apartment fire in Buffalo, New York
2007
Election of new 7 wonders of the world: deadline approaching
2007
New video released shows BBC journalist Alan Johnston wearing 'explosive belt'
2007
America's Cup: Team New Zealand wins over Alinghi in second race
2008
Basketball: UAAP opens 2008-2009 season with new rules
2008
State of Florida agrees to purchase U.S. Sugar to restore the Everglades
2008
Australians getting drunker, fatter, but among the world's longest-lived
2008
Wimbledon Officials receive criticism from animal rights group after shooting birds
2008
US Supreme Court overturns death penalty for child rape
2008
Wildfires started by lightning burn in California
2008
Associated Press goes after bloggers for copyright violation
2008
Brazilian tribe is neither a new discovery nor a hoax
2009
Freed journalist calls on Iran to release aid worker
2009
Gisela Dulko knocks Maria Sharapova out of Wimbledon
2009
Google not accessible in some parts of China
2009
Steelmaker Corus to cut 2000 jobs in the UK and Netherlands
2009
Lleyton Hewitt knocks Juan Martin del Potro out of Wimbledon
2009
Singer and songwriter Michael Jackson dies at age 50
2009
Queen's University agree to cut 103 members of staff
2009
Saturn moon may contain liquid water
2009
World's smallest car enters Ripley's Believe it or Not museum
2010
Journalist accuses Algerian footballer of assault after World Cup exit
2010
NASCAR driver Labonte terminates deal with TRG Motorsports
2010
Train accident in Spain kills at least twelve
2011
FTC begins antitrust inquiry of Google
2012
Cyprus seeks EU bailout
2012
EU condemns Syria for shootdown, urges Turkish restraint

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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