Today in History

  • Fri Jan 20th, 2012 2:04pm
  • Life

Today is Sunday, Jan. 22, the 22nd day of 2012. There are 344 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight

On Jan. 22, 1912, the Florida Keys Over-Sea Railroad, which connected the Keys with the mainland, went into service; aboard the first train to reach Key West was the line’s founder, Henry Flagler. (Following the damaging 1935 Labor Day hurricane, the rail line from the mainland was abandoned and replaced with a highway.)

On this date:

In 1498, during his third voyage to the Western Hemisphere, Christopher Columbus arrived at the present-day Caribbean island of St. Vincent.

In 1901, Britain’s Queen Victoria died at age 81.

In 1917, President Woodrow Wilson pleaded for an end to war in Europe, calling for “peace without victory.” (By April, however, America also was at war.)

In 1922, Pope Benedict XV died; he was succeeded by Pius XI.

In 1944, during World War II, Allied forces began landing at Anzio, Italy.

In 1959, 12 workers were killed in the Knox Mine Disaster in Pennsylvania.

In 1962, one of Hollywood’s most famous, as well as tumultuous, romances bloomed as Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton filmed their first scene together on the set of “Cleopatra” at the Cinecitta studios in Rome.

In 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court, in its Roe v. Wade decision, legalized abortions using a trimester approach. Former President Lyndon B. Johnson died at age 64.

In 1984, the Los Angeles Raiders defeated the Washington Redskins 38-9 to win Super Bowl XVIII (18), played at Tampa Stadium in Florida. (The game broadcast on CBS-TV featured Apple Computer’s famous “1984” ad introducing the Macintosh computer.)

In 1987, Pennsylvania treasurer R. Budd Dwyer, convicted of defrauding the state, proclaimed his innocence at a news conference before shooting himself to death in front of horrified spectators.

In 1995, Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy died at the Kennedy compound at Hyannis Port, Mass., at age 104.

In 1997, the Senate confirmed Madeleine Albright as the nation’s first female secretary of state.

Ten years ago: Kmart Corp. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. (Kmart emerged from bankruptcy in 2003.) Jack Shea, a gold medal-winning speedskater and patriarch of the nation’s first family with three generations of Olympians, died in Lake Placid, N.Y., of injuries suffered in a car accident; he was 91.

Today’s Birthdays: Former Sen. Birch Bayh, D-Ind., is 84. Actress Piper Laurie is 80. Actor Seymour Cassel is 77. Author Joseph Wambaugh is 75. Actor John Hurt is 72. Singer Steve Perry is 63. Country singer-musician Teddy Gentry (Alabama) is 60. Movie director Jim Jarmusch is 59. Hockey Hall-of-Famer Mike Bossy is 55. Actress Linda Blair is 53. Actress Diane Lane is 47. Actor-rap DJ Jazzy Jeff is 47. Country singer Regina Nicks (Regina Regina) is 47. Rhythm-and-blues singer Marc Gay (Shai) is 43. Actor Gabriel Macht is 40. Actor Balthazar Getty is 37. Actor Christopher Kennedy Masterson is 32. Pop singer Willa Ford is 31. Actress Beverley (cq) Mitchell is 31. Rock singer-musician Ben Moody is 31. Actress Sami Gayle (TV: “Blue Bloods”) is 16.

Thought for Today: “Praise undeserved is satire in disguise.” — Henry Broadhurst, English politician (1840-1911).

Associated Press