Today In History...
In 1893 The U.S. Senate gives final congressional approval to repeal the Sherman Silver Purchase Act of 1890.
In 1905 Tsar Nicholas II grants Russia a constitution.
In 1925 John Logie Baird creates the first crude light and shade TV images.
In 1938 Orson Welles panics a nation with staged news bulletins about an invasion from Mars known as the "War of the Worlds." Thousands flee their homes in fear after hearing the radio play on CBS.
In 1941 The U.S. Navy destroyer Reuben James is torpedoed by Germany off the coast of Iceland, even though the U.S. had not entered World War II.
In 1944 The Martha Graham ballet "Appalachian Spring" premieres at the Library of Congress with Graham in a leading role.
In 1945 The U.S. government announces end of shoe rationing.
In 1953 Dr. Albert Schweitzer receives a Nobel Peace Prize.
In 1961 Soviet Party Congress unanimously approves a resolution removing Josef Stalin's body from Lenin's tomb in Red Square.
In 1961 The Soviet Union detonates a 58 megaton hydrogen bomb, at the time the largest ever man-made explosion.
In 1967 USSR Kosmos 186 and 188 make the first automatic docking.
In 1972 An Illinois Central commuter train collides with another killing 44 rush hour passengers on Chicago's South Side.
In 1974 Muhammad Ali knocks out George Foreman in the 8th round of a 15-round bout in Kinshasa, Zaire, to regain his world heavyweight title.
In 1975 The New York Daily News runs the headline "Ford to City: Drop Dead," one day after President Ford said he would veto any federal legislation to bail out New York City.
In 1979 President Carter announces his choice of Shirley Hufstedler to head then newly created Department of Education.
In 1983 A 13.1 earthquake kills 1300 in Turkey.
In 1984 Police in Poland find the body of kidnapped pro-Solidarity priest Jerzy Popieluszko, whose death was blamed on four security officers.
In 1985 The launch of the space shuttle Challenger is witnessed by the schoolteacher scheduled to fly aboard the spacecraft the following January, Christa McAuliffe of New Hampshire.
In 1987 President Reagan announces that Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev would visit Washington the following December for a summit.
In 1989 Mitsubishi Estate Company, a major Japanese real estate concern, announces it was buying 51% of Rockefeller Group of New York.
In 1990 In the Persian Gulf, 10 American sailors die when a steam pipe ruptures aboard the USS Iwo Jima.
In 1990 In Saudi Arabia, a U.S. Marine is killed in an accident while driving in the desert.
In 1991 The Middle East peace conference in Madrid, Spain, opens with addresses to the delegates by President George Bush and Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev.
In 1992 Iran-Contra special prosecutor Lawrence E. Walsh releases documents which suggested Vice President Bush was fully aware of the Reagan administration's arms-for-hostages deal with Iran.
In 1993 Martin Fettman, America's first veterinarian in space, performs the world's first animal dissections in space (on rats), aboard the shuttle Columbia.
In 1994 Pope John Paul II names 30 new cardinals, including the archbishops of Baltimore and Detroit and the first-ever from Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina.
In 1995 By a 50.6 percent to 49.4 percent vote, Federalists prevail over separatists in Quebec in a secession referendum.
In 1996 After a 4-hour trial, a Chinese court sentenced pro-democracy activist Wang Dan to 11 years in prison for "conspiring to subvert the Chinese government." (Wang was freed in April 1998 and sent into exile in the U.S.)
In 1999 55 people are killed in a fire at an illegal bar in Inchon, South Korea.
In 2000 Comedian and television host Steve Allen dies at age 78.
In 2001 NASA's 2001 Mars Odyssey spacecraft takes its first picture of Mars, one week after it safely arrived in orbit.
In 2001 Ukraine destroys its last nuclear missile silo.