Today in History

  • Sunday, July 22, 2012 2:56pm
  • Life

Today is Monday, July 23, the 205th day of 2012. There are 161 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight:

On July 23, 1962, the first public TV transmissions over Telstar 1 took place during a special program featuring live shots beamed from the United States to Europe, and vice versa.

On this date:

In 1885, Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th president of the United States, died in Mount McGregor, N.Y., at age 63.

In 1886, a legend was born as Steve Brodie claimed to have made a daredevil plunge from the Brooklyn Bridge into New York’s East River. (However, there are doubts about whether the dive actually occurred.)

In 1914, Austria-Hungary issued a list of demands to Serbia following the killing of Archduke Franz Ferdinand by a Serb assassin; the dispute led to World War I.

In 1942, Harry James and his Orchestra recorded “I Had the Craziest Dream” in Hollywood for Columbia Records.

In 1945, French Marshal Henri Petain (ahn-REE’ pay-TAN’), who had headed the Vichy (vee-shee) government during World War II, went on trial, charged with treason. (He was convicted and condemned to death, but the sentence was commuted.)

In 1951, Henri Petain died in prison.

In 1952, Egyptian military officers led by Gamal Abdel Nasser launched a successful coup against King Farouk I.

In 1967, a week of deadly race-related rioting that claimed 43 lives erupted in Detroit.

In 1977, a jury in Washington, D.C., convicted 12 Hanafi Muslims of charges stemming from the hostage siege at three buildings the previous March.

In 1982, actor Vic Morrow and two child actors, 7-year-old Myca Dinh Le and 6-year-old Renee Shin-Yi Chen, were killed when a helicopter crashed on top of them during filming of a Vietnam War scene for “Twilight Zone: The Movie.” (Director John Landis and four associates were later acquitted of manslaughter charges.)

In 1986, Britain’s Prince Andrew married Sarah Ferguson at Westminster Abbey in London. (The couple divorced in 1996.)

In 1997, the search for Andrew Cunanan, the suspected killer of designer Gianni Versace and others, ended as police found his body on a houseboat in Miami Beach, an apparent suicide.

Ten years ago: Thousands of Palestinians marched to bury their dead after an Israeli airstrike killed a top Hamas leader and 14 civilians, including nine children. Welsh archbishop Rowan Williams was chosen to be the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury, spiritual leader of the world’s Anglicans. A frail but determined Pope John Paul II arrived in Toronto at the start of an 11-day trip that also took him to Guatemala and Mexico. Novelist Chaim Potok died in Merion, Pa., at age 73. Actor Leo McKern died in Bath, England, at age 82.

Five years ago: In the first political debate of its kind, all eight Democratic Party contenders, appearing on CNN, fielded questions submitted by the public on YouTube. A violent home invasion in Cheshire, Conn., resulted in the deaths of a prominent doctor’s wife, Jennifer Hawke-Petit, and their daughters, Hayley and Michaela; two suspects, Steven Hayes and Joshua Komisarjevsky, were almost immediately arrested (both were convicted and sentenced to death). Comic Drew Carey was tapped to replace legend Bob Barker on the CBS daytime game show “The Price is Right.”

One year ago: Singer Amy Winehouse, 27, was found dead in her London home from accidental alcohol poisoning. Retired Army Gen. John Shalikashvili, the first foreign-born chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, died at Madigan Army Medical Center near Tacoma, Wash., at age 75. Nguyen Cao Ky, 80, the flamboyant former air force general who’d ruled South Vietnam for two years during the Vietnam war, died in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. A bullet train crash in southern China claimed 40 lives.

Associated Press

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