Today is Wednesday, Oct. 20, the 293rd day of 2010. There are 72 days left in the year.
On Oct. 20, 1973, in the so-called “Saturday Night Massacre,” special Watergate prosecutor Archibald Cox was dismissed and Attorney General Elliot Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus resigned.
ON THIS DATE
In 1740, Maria Theresa became ruler of Austria, Hungary and Bohemia upon the death of her father, Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI.
In 1803, the U.S. Senate ratified the Louisiana Purchase.
In 1903, a joint commission ruled in favor of the United States in a boundary dispute between the District of Alaska and Canada.
In 1944, during World War II, Gen. Douglas MacArthur stepped ashore at Leyte in the Philippines, 2 1/2 years after saying, “I shall return.”
In 1947, the House Un-American Activities Committee opened hearings into alleged Communist influence and infiltration in the U.S. m0vie industry.
In 1967, seven men were convicted in Meridian, Miss., of violating the civil rights of three slain civil rights workers.
In 1968, former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy married Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis.
In 1979, the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum was dedicated in Boston.
In 1990, three members of the rap group 2 Live Crew were acquitted by a jury in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. of violating obscenity laws with an adults-only concert in nearby Hollywood the previous June.
In 2000, Egyptian-born Ali Mohamed, a U.S. citizen who’d served in the Army, pleaded guilty in New York to helping plan the deadly U.S. Embassy bombings in Africa in 1998 that killed 224 people, including 12 Americans.
In 2005, U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay turned himself in at the sheriff’s office in Travis County, Texas, where he was fingerprinted, photographed and released on $10,000 bail on conspiracy and money-laundering charges. (DeLay has yet to stand trial.) A defense lawyer in Saddam Hussein’s mass murder trial was abducted from his office and found murdered hours later. Jazz pianist and vocalist Shirley Horn died in Washington, D.C. at age 71.
In 2009, ignoring appeals by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and even rock star Sting, Iran sentenced an Iranian-American academic, Kian Tajbakhsh, to 12 years in prison for his alleged role in anti-government protests. Afghanistan’s election commission ordered a runoff in the disputed presidential poll. (The runoff was later canceled, and President Hamid Karzai proclaimed the winner.)