Today In History...

In 1854 Richmond, Virginia, falls to Union forces during the Civil War.
In 1870 Manitoba becomes a Canadian province.
In 1896 The New York City Department of Health passes a health ordinance prohibiting spitting on the sidewalks or in other public places.
In 1932 The body of the kidnapped son of Charles Lindbergh is found in a wooded area of Hopewell, New Jersey.
In 1933 The Federal Emergency Relief Administration and the Agricultural Adjustment Administration are established to provide help for the needy and farmers.
In 1937 Britain's King George VI is crowned at Westminster Abbey along with Queen Elizabeth.
In 1943 Axis forces in North Africa surrender during World War II.
In 1949 The Berlin blockade ends as the Soviet Union announces the reopening of East German land routes.
In 1958 The North American Defense Command is founded.
In 1965 West Germany and Israel begin diplomatic relations.
In 1970 The Senate confirms Harry A. Blackmun to the U.S. Supreme Court.
In 1975 The White House announces the new Cambodian government has seized the Mayaguez, an American merchant ship, in international waters.
In 1978 The Commerce Department announces that hurricanes would no longer be named exclusively after women.
In 1982 Security guards prevent a Spanish priest armed with a bayonet from reaching Pope John Paul II.
In 1983 The Senate Appropriations Committee votes, 17-11, to approve the release of $625 million for development of the M-X missle that had been blocked by Congress.
In 1984 The World's Fair opens in New Orleans, Louisiana (it eventually goes bankrupt).
In 1985 Convicted Illinois rapist Gary Dotson is pardoned after his alleged victim retracted her charges.
In 1986 A Soviet government statement reports six deaths from burns and radiation in the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
In 1987 Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir rejects Foreign Minister Shimon Peres' proposal for an international Middle East peace conference, calling it "perverse and criminal."
In 1988 U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz and Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze, meeting in Geneva, resolve nearly all remaining questions on an intermediate-range missle treaty.
In 1989 The nation's largest airline computer reservation system, the American Airlines Sabre system, shuts down for nearly 12 hours, disrupting the operations of travel agencies nationwide.
In 1991 Syrian President Hafez Assad, meeting with U.S. Secretary of State James A. Baker III, refused to yield on key demands for joining a Middle East peace conference.
In 1992 Four suspects are arrested in the televised beating of trucker Reginald Denny, which occurred at the start of the Los Angeles riots.
In 1992 Robert Reed, of the TV's "The Brady Bunch," dies at age 59.
In 1993 President Clinton proposes putting all money raised from new taxes and spending cuts into a trust fund dedicated solely to reducing the nation's huge budget deficit.
In 1994 British Labor Party leader John Smith dies unexpectedly at age 55.
In 1995 President Clinton, during a stopover in Ukraine, visits Babi Yar, the site where more than 30,000 Kiev Jews were massacred by the Nazis in 1941.
In 1996 Authorities in Florida call off the search for possible survivors from the crash of ValuJet Flight 592, a day after the jetliner nose-dived into the Everglades with 110 people on board.
In 1997 Australia's Susie Maroney, the first woman to cross the straits, swims 118 miles from Cuba to Florida.
In 1997 Russia and Chechnya formally end a two-year war but avoid the key issue of Chechen independence.
In 1997 South Africa's ruling party admits to bombings, murders and torture in the fight against apartheid.
In 1997 At the Oklahoma City bombing trial of Timothy McVeigh, star prosecution witness Michael Fortier testifies that McVeigh had been bent on triggering a "general uprising in America."
In 1998 A day after India's first atomic test blasts in 24 years, neighboring Pakistan said it was ready to test a nuclear device.
In 1998 Indonesian President Suharto's security forces kill at least six student demonstrators.
In 2002 Jimmy Carter arrives in Cuba, becoming the first U.S. president -- in or out of office -- to visit since the 1959 revolution that put Fidel Castro in power.
In 2002 Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's Likud party rejects the creation of a Palestinian state.
In 2003 59 Democratic lawmakers bring the Texas House to a standstill by going into hiding in a dispute over a Republican congressional redistricting plan.
In 2004 NBC merges with the Universal television.
In 2014 Swiss artist H.R. Giger, who designed the creature in Ridley Scott's sci-fi horror classic "Alien," dies at age 74.


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