Today In History...

In 1642 Astronomer Galileo Galilei dies at age 78 in Arceti, Italy.

In 1798 The 11th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is ratified, prohibiting one state from suing another in federal court.

In 1815 U.S. forces led by General Andrew Jackson defeat the British in the Battle of New Orleans, the closing battle of the War of 1812.

In 1894 Fire causes serious damage at the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago.

In 1918 President Wilson outlines his 14 points for peace after World WarI.

In 1918 Mississippi becomes the first state to ratify a proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibiting the sale, manufacture or transportation of liquor.

In 1925 The first all-woman state supreme court meets in Texas.

In 1935 A.C. Hardy patents the Spectrophotometer.

In 1958 Cuban revolutionary forces capture Havana.

In 1959 Charles De Gaulle is inaugurated as president of France's Fifth Republic.

In 1962 Jack Nicklaus won his first money on the golf pro circuit, $33.50 for 50th place in the Los Angeles Open.

In 1964 President Lyndon B. Johnson declares a "War on Poverty."

In 1965 The Star of India and other stolen gems are returned to theAmerican Museum of Natural History in New York.

In 1968 U.S. Surveyor 7 lands near crater Tycho on the moon.

In 1973 The USSR launches Luna 21 for a moon landing.

In 1973 Secret peace talks between the U.S. and North Vietnam resume near Paris, France.

In 1975 Judge John J. Sirica orders the release of Watergate figures JohnW. Dean III, Herbert W. Kalmbach and Jeb Stuart Magruder from prison.

In 1976 Chinese premier, Chou En-lai dies at age 78 in Beijing.

In 1982 AT&T settles the Justice Department's antitrust lawsuit against it by agreeing to divest itself of 22 Bell System companies.

In 1985 Reverend Lawrence Martin Jenco is kidnapped in Lebanon (he was released 19 months later).

In 1985 President Reagan announces that his chief of staff, James A. Baker, and the secretary of the Treasury, Donald Regan, would trade jobs.

In 1986 A day after acting to halt all American business dealings with Libya, President Reagan orders all Libyan government assets in the U.S. frozen.

In 1986 The Pogo stick jumping distance is set at 11.53 miles.

In 1987 The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 2000 for the first time at 2,002.25.

In 1987 President Ronald Reagan returns to the White House from Bethesda Naval Hospital, where he'd undergone prostate surgery.

In 1987 Kay Orr is sworn in as the first female governor of Nebraska.

In 1988 Arizona Governor Evan Mecham and is brother, Willard, are indicted on charges of lying under oath regarding campaign contributions. (Both were later acquitted.)

In 1989 The Soviet Minister says his nation will destroy stockpiles of chemical weapons estimated at well over 300,000 tons.

In 1991 U.S. Secretary of State James A. Baker III and Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz arrive in Geneva for the first high-level talks between their countries since the Persian Gulf crisis began.

In 1992 President Bush collapses with a case of the stomach flu at a state dinner in Tokyo.

In 1993 Serb gunmen shot and kill Bosnian deputy prime minister Hakija Turajlic in the presence of French peacekeepers.

In 1994 Tonya Harding wins the U.S. Figure Skating Championship in Detroit, a day after Nancy Kerrigan dropped out because of the clubbing attack that had left her right knee injured.

In 1995 Russian forces in Chechnya pound the capital of Grozny with rocket and mortar fire in an attempt to scatter Chechen fighters defending the presidential palace.

In 1996 Federal employees who had been out of work for weeks while the government was shut down begin returning to their jobs.

In 1996 More than 300 people are killed in Kinshasa, Zaire, when a cargo plane crashed into a market on takeoff.

In 1996 Former French president Francois Mitterrand dies at age 79.

In 1997 President Yeltsin is hospitalized with early signs of pneumonia.

In 1997 The state of Arkansas puts 3 men to death in the second triple execution since capital punishment was reinstated in 1976.

In 1997 The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments on whether to allow physician-assisted suicide.

In 2001 Former Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards is sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined a quarter of a million dollars for extorting payoffs from businessmen applying for riverboat casino licenses.

In 2001 Pope John Paul is awarded the Congressional Gold Medal.

In 2002 Ozzie Smith, regarded as the finest-fielding shortstop ever, is elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame on his first try.

In 2002 Wendy's founder Dave Thomas dies at age 69.


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