Today in History

  • Fri Nov 2nd, 2012 2:51pm
  • Life

Today is Sunday, Nov. 4, the 309th day of 2012. There are 57 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Nov. 4, 1942, during World War II, Axis forces retreated from El Alamein in North Africa in a major victory for British forces commanded by Lt. Gen. Bernard Montgomery.

On this date:

In 1862, inventor Richard J. Gatling received a U.S. patent for his rapid-fire Gatling gun.

In 1884, Democrat Grover Cleveland was elected to his first term as president, defeating Republican James G. Blaine.

In 1922, the entrance to King Tutankhamen’s tomb was discovered in Egypt.

In 1924, Nellie T. Ross of Wyoming was elected the nation’s first female governor to serve out the remaining term of her late husband, William B. Ross.

In 1939, the United States modified its neutrality stance in World War II, allowing “cash and carry” purchases of arms by belligerents, a policy favoring Britain and France.

In 1952, Dwight D. Eisenhower was elected president, defeating Democrat Adlai Stevenson. The highly secretive National Security Agency came into existence.

In 1979, the Iran hostage crisis began as militants stormed the United States Embassy in Tehran, seizing its occupants; for some, it was the start of 444 days of captivity.

In 1980, Ronald Reagan won the White House as he defeated President Jimmy Carter by a strong margin.

In 1987, 6-year-old Elizabeth (Lisa) Steinberg was pronounced dead at a New York City hospital in a child-abuse case that sparked national outrage; her illegal adoptive father, Joel Steinberg, served nearly 17 years behind bars for manslaughter.

In 1991, Ronald Reagan opened his presidential library in Simi Valley, Calif.; in attendance were President George H.W. Bush and former Presidents Jimmy Carter, Gerald R. Ford and Richard Nixon — the first-ever gathering of five past and present U.S. chief executives.

In 1995, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated by a right-wing Israeli minutes after attending a festive peace rally.

In 2008, Democrat Barack Obama was elected the first black president of the United States, defeating Republican John McCain.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Doris Roberts is 82. Actress Loretta Swit is 75. Rhythm-and-blues singer Harry Elston (Friends of Distinction) is 74. Blues singer Delbert McClinton is 72. Former First Lady Laura Bush is 66. Actress Markie Post is 62. Rock singer-musician Chris Difford (Squeeze) is 58. Country singer Kim Forester (The Forester Sisters) is 52. Actress-comedian Kathy Griffin is 52. Actor Ralph Macchio is 51. “Survivor” host Jeff Probst is 51. Rock singer-musician Wayne Static (Static-X) is 47. Actor Matthew McConaughey is 43. Rapper-producer Sean “Puffy” Combs is 43. Rhythm-and-blues singer Shawn Rivera (Az Yet) is 41. Actress Heather Tom is 37. Rhythm-and-blues/gospel singer George Huff is 32. Actress Gillian Zinser (TV: “90210”) is 27.

Thought for Today

“No one is so eager to gain new experience as he who doesn’t know how to make use of the old ones.” — Marie Ebner von Eschenbach, Austrian writer (1830-1916).

Associated Press