Today in History

Today is Sunday, May 19, the 139th day of 2019. There are 226 days left in the year.

Today is Sunday, May 19, the 139th day of 2019. There are 226 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight: On May 19, 1649, England was declared a republic by Parliament following the execution of King Charles I. (The monarchy was restored in 1660.)

On this date:

In 1536, Anne Boleyn, the second wife of England’s King Henry VIII, was beheaded after being convicted of adultery.

In 1913, California Gov. Hiram Johnson signed the Webb-Hartley Law prohibiting “aliens ineligible to citizenship” from owning farm land, a measure targeting Asian immigrants, particularly Japanese.

In 1921, Congress passed, and President Warren G. Harding signed, the Emergency Quota Act, which established national quotas for immigrants.

In 1935, T.E. Lawrence, also known as “Lawrence of Arabia,” died in Dorset, England, six days after being injured in a motorcycle crash.

In 1943, in his second wartime address to the U.S. Congress, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill pledged his country’s full support in the fight against Japan; that evening, Churchill met with President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the White House, where the two leaders agreed on May 1, 1944 as the date for the D-Day invasion of France (the operation ended up being launched more than a month later).

In 1962, actress Marilyn Monroe sang “Happy Birthday to You” to President John F. Kennedy during a Democratic fundraiser at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

In 1981, five British soldiers were killed by an Irish Republican Army land mine in County Armagh, Northern Ireland.

In 1992, in a case that drew much notoriety, Mary Jo Buttafuoco of Massapequa, New York, was shot and seriously wounded by her husband Joey’s teenage lover, Amy Fisher.

In 1993, the Clinton White House set off a political storm by abruptly firing the entire staff of its travel office; five of the seven staffers were later reinstated and assigned to other duties.

In 1994, former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis died in New York at age 64.

In 2006, A key U.N. panel joined European and United Nations leaders in urging the Bush administration to close its prison in Guantanamo Bay, saying the indefinite detention of terror suspects there violated the world’s ban on torture.

In 2017, former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., whose penchant for sexting strangers ended his political career, pleaded guilty in Manhattan to a sex charge, tearfully apologizing for communications with a 15-year-old girl. (Weiner received a 21-month prison sentence.)

Ten years ago: President Barack Obama asked consumers to back his plan for higher efficiency standards for cars and trucks, saying drivers would make up the higher cost of cleaner vehicles at the gas pump.

Five years ago: The U.S. charged five Chinese military officials with hacking into U.S. companies’ computers to steal vital trade secrets, intensifying already rising tensions. A federal judge threw out Oregon’s same-sex marriage ban that had been approved by voters. Lucy Li, at age 11, became the youngest player to qualify for the U.S. Women’s Open by winning the sectional qualifier at Half Moon Bay in California.

One year ago: Britain’s Prince Harry wed American actress Meghan Markle in a service that reflected Harry’s royal heritage and his bride’s biracial roots, as well as their shared commitment to put a more diverse, modern face on the monarchy. Justify won the Preakness in foggy Baltimore, on the way to a Triple Crown sweep. Starbucks announced a new policy allowing anyone to sit in its cafes or use its restrooms, even if they don’t buy anything; the policy came five weeks after two black men who hadn’t bought anything were arrested at a Philadelphia Starbucks. First lady Melania Trump returned to the white House following a weeklong hospitalization for kidney treatment.

Today’s birthdays: PBS newscaster Jim Lehrer is 85. TV personality David Hartman is 84. Actor James Fox is 80. Actress Nancy Kwan is 80. Rock singer-composer Pete Townshend (The Who) is 74. Concert pianist David Helfgott is 72. Rock singer-musician Dusty Hill (ZZ Top) is 70. College Football Hall of Famer and former NFL player Archie Manning is 70. Singer-actress Grace Jones is 68. Rock musician Phil Rudd is 65. Actor Steven Ford is 63. Actress Toni Lewis is 59. Rock musician Iain Harvie (Del Amitri) is 57. Actress Polly Walker is 53. Actor Jason Gray-Stanford is 49. Gospel singer Israel Houghton is 48. Rock singer Jenny Berggren (Ace of Base) is 47. Race car driver Dario Franchitti is 46. TV personality Kim Zolciak Biermann (TV: “Real Housewives of Atlanta”) is 41. Country/rock singer Shooter Jennings is 40. Actor Drew Fuller is 39. Actor-comedian Michael Che (TV: “Saturday Night Live”) is 36. Christian rock musician Tim McTague (Underoath) is 36. Rock musician James Richardson (MGMT) is 36. Actor Eric Lloyd is 33. Pop singer Sam Smith is 27. Actor Nolan Lyons is 18.

Thought for today: “The most exciting happiness is the happiness generated by forces beyond your control.” — Ogden Nash, American poet (born in 1902, died this date in 1971).

— Associated Press

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