Today In History...
In 1798 Congress passed the Sedition Act, making it a federal crime to publish false, scandalous, or malicious writing about the U.S. government.
In 1850 The first public demonstration of ice was made by refrigeration.
In 1853 Commodore Matthew Perry relayed a letter from former President Fillmore requesting trade relations with Japanese officials.
In 1881 William Bonney Jr., alias Billy the Kid, was reportedly shot and killed by Sheriff Pat Garrett in Fort Sumner, New Mexico.
In 1921 Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were convicted in Dedham, MA, in the killing of a shoe company paymaster and his guard. (Sacco and Vanzetti were executed six years later.)
In 1933 All German political parties, except the Nazi Party, were outlawed.
In 1950 R.E. Wayne was awarded the first Distinguished Flying Cross.
In 1951 Citation became the first horse to win $1,000,000 in races.
In 1958 The army of Iraq overthrew the monarchy.
In 1965 U.S. Mariner IV, the first Mars probe, passed at 6,100 miles and returned photographs of the planet.
In 1965 U.S. Ambassador Adlai E. Stevenson Jr., the Democratic presidential nominee in 1952 and 1956, died in London at age 65.
In 1966 Richard Speck killed 8 student nurses in a Chicago dormitory. (Speck died in prison in 1991, a day short of his 50th birthday.)
In 1969 The "Futbol War" between El Salvador and Honduras began.
In 1969 The film "Easy Rider" opened nationally.
In 1972 The State Department criticized actress Jane Fonda for making anti-war radio broadcasts in Hanoi, calling them "distressing."
In 1975 Plans to build EPCOT Center in Orlando, Florida, are announced.
In 1976 Jimmy Carter won the Democratic presidential nomination by an overwhelming margin at the party's convention in New York.
In1In 1978, The cheese-eating record is set when Peter Dowdeswell downs a pound of hard cheddar in 73 seconds.
In 1978 Soviet dissident Anatoly Shcharansky was convicted of treasonous espionage and sentenced to 13 years of hard labor. (He was released in 1986.)
In 1983 Two members of Congress, Illinois Republican Daniel Crane and Massachusetts Democrat Gerry Studds, admitted to having sexual relations with congressional pages.
In 1984 New Zealand's Labor Party, led by David Lange, won a landslide election victory, ending conservative Prime Minister Robert.
In 1986 Richard Miller of the FBI was sentenced to two life terms as a Soviet spy. (The verdict was later overturned, and Miller was convicted again and sentenced to 20 years.)
In 1987 Taiwan ended 37 years of martial law.
In 1988 Iran's foreign minister, Ali-Akbar Velayati, denounced the U.S. downing of an Iranian jetliner as "a barbaric massacre."
In 1989 Leaders of the seven wealthiest nations opened a summit in Paris, also celebrating the bicentennial of the French Revolution with pomp and pageantry.
In 1991 American and Soviet negotiators in Washington continued work on trying to complete a treaty slashing long-range nuclear arsenals.
In 1993 President Clinton visited flood-stricken Iowa for the second time in 10 days, telling flood victims to "hang in there."
In 1995 Under pressure from Congress, FBI Director Louis J. Freeh removed Larry Potts as the bureau's deputy director because of controversy over Potts' role in a deadly 1992 FBI siege in Idaho.
In 1996 Fire crews battled blazes covering more than 16,000 acres in California, Colorado, Idaho, Oregon, and Utah.
In 1997 The international war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia sentenced Dusan Tadic to 20 years in prison.
In 1997 O.J. Simpson's California mansion was auctioned off for $2.6 million.
In 1998 The city of Los Angeles sued 15 tobacco companies for $2.5 billion over the dangers of secondhand smoke.
In 2000 A Florida jury ordered five major tobacco companies to pay smokers a record $145 billion in punitive damages.
In 2001 China convicted American business professor Li Shaomin of spying for Taiwan and ordered him deported.
In 2001 Former Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham, 84, suffered a head injury in a fall in Sun Valley, Idaho. She died 3 days later.
In 2002 A gunman tried but failed to assassinate French President Jacques Chirac during a Bastille Day parade.
In 2003 Iraq's new governing council, in its first full day on the job, voted to send a delegation to the U.N. Security Council and assert its right to represent Baghdad on the world stage.