Today is Friday, April 27, the 118th day of 2012. There are 248 days left in the year.
On April 27, 2011, powerful tornadoes raked the South and Midwest. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, more than 120 twisters resulted in 316 deaths across parts of Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Virginia and Georgia.
On this date:
In 1521, Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan was killed by natives in the Philippines.
In 1777, the only land battle in Connecticut during the Revolutionary War, the Battle of Ridgefield, took place, resulting in a limited British victory.
In 1805, during the First Barbary War, an American-led force of Marines and mercenaries captured the city of Derna, on the shores of Tripoli.
In 1822, the 18th president of the United States, Ulysses Grant, was born in Point Pleasant, Ohio.
In 1865, the steamer Sultana exploded on the Mississippi River near Memphis, Tenn., killing more than 1,400 people, mostly freed Union prisoners of war.
In 1941, German forces occupied Athens during World War II.
In 1967, Expo ‘67 was officially opened in Montreal by Canadian Prime Minister Lester Pearson.
In 1972, the Apollo 16 mission to the moon ended safely.
In 1973, acting FBI Director Patrick Gray resigned after it was revealed that he’d destroyed files removed from the safe of Watergate conspirator Howard Hunt.