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Today in History
Famous Birthdays
 Encyclopaedia Britannica

*1911Born this day in 1911, Ronald Reagan, the 40th U.S. president (1981–89), was known for his fervent anticommunism, staunch conservatism, and appealing personal style that earned him the nickname the “Great Communicator.”  
2003NASA's space shuttle Columbia exploded while re-entering the Earth's atmosphere. All seven astronauts on board were killed.  
2001Three Scottish judges found Abdel Basset al-Mergrahi guilty of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, which killed 270 people. The court said that Megrahi was a member of the Libyan intelligence service. Al-Amin Khalifa, who had been co-accused, was acquitted and freed.  
1999Former White House intern Monica Lewinsky gave a deposition that was videotaped for senators weighing impeachment charges against U.S. President Clinton.  
1998Stuart Whitman received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  
1996Visa and Mastercard announced security measures that would make it safe to shop on the Internet.  
1994Jeff Gillooly plead guilty in Portland, OR, for his role in the attack on figure skater Nancy Kerrigan. Gillooly, Tonya Harding's ex-husband, struck a plea bargain under which he confessed to racketeering charges in exchange for testimony implicating Harding.  
1991A USAir jetliner crashed atop a commuter plane at Los Angeles International Airport. 35 people were killed.  
1987Terry Williams won the largest slot machine payoff, at the time, when won $4.9 million after getting four lucky 7s on a machine in Reno, NV.  
1979Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini was welcomed in Tehran as he ended nearly 15 years of exile.  
1979Patty Hearst was released from prison after serving 22 months of a seven-year sentence for bank robbery. Her sentence had been commuted by U.S. President Carter.  
1976"Sonny and Cher" resumed on TV despite a real life divorce.  
1968During the Vietnam War, South Vietnamese National Police Chief Brig. Gen. Nguyen Ngoc Loan executed a Viet Cong officer with a pistol shot to the head. The scene was captured in a news photograph.  
1960Four black college students began a sit-in protest at a lunch counter in Greensboro, NC. They had been refused service.  
1958The United Arab Republic was formed by a union of Egypt and Syria. It was broken 1961.  
1957P.H. Young became the first black pilot on a scheduled passenger airline.  
1954CBS-TV showed "The Secret Storm" for the first time.  
1953CBS-TV debuted "Private Secretary."  
1952Elizabeth II, who celebrated her Golden Jubilee in 2002, ascended the throne of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland this day in 1952, following the death of her father, King George VI.  
1951The first telecast of an atomic explosion took place.  
1951The first X-ray moving picture process was demonstrated.  
1946Norwegian statesman Trygve Lie was chosen to be the first secretary-general of the United Nations.  
1930The Times published its first crossword puzzle.  
1929Weightlifter, Charles Rigoulet of France, achieved the first 400 pound ‘clean and jerk’ as he lifted 402-1/2 pounds.  
1921Carmen Fasanella registered as a taxicab owner and driver in Princeton, New Jersey. Fasanella retired November 2, 1989 after 68 years and 243 days of service.  
1920Canada's Royal North West Mounted Police changed their name to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The organization was commissioned in 1873.  
1920The first armored car was introduced.  
1919The first Miss America was crowned in New York City.  
1919A German constitutional assembly met to form the Weimar Republic. 
1913Grand Central Terminal (also known as Grand Central Station) opened in New York City, NY. It was the largest train station in the world.  
1900Eastman Kodak Co. introduced the $1 Brownie box camera.  
1898The Travelers Insurance Company of Hartford, CT, issued the first automobile insurance policy. Dr. Truman Martin of Buffalo, NY, paid $11.25 for the policy, which gave him $5,000 in liability coverage.  
1896Puccini's opera "La Boheme" premiered in Turin.  
1893Thomas A. Edison completed work on the world's first motion picture studio in West Orange, NJ.  
1884The first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary was published.  
1867In the U.S., bricklayers start working 8-hour days.  
1862"The Battle Hymn of the Republic," by Julia Ward Howe was first published in the "Atlantic Monthly."  
1862Union naval commodore Andrew Foote, leading a flotilla of ironclads, captured Fort Henry, Tennessee, a strategic Confederate position during the American Civil War. 
1861Texas voted to secede from the Union.  
1793France declared war on Britain and Holland.  
1793Ralph Hodgson patented oiled silk.  
1790The U.S. Supreme Court convened for the first time in New York City.  
1788Isaac Briggs and William Longstreet patented the steamboat.  
46Julius Caesar's forces delivered the final blow against supporters of Pompey the Great at the Battle of Thapsus. 
Asterisks (*) denotes birthday

Famous Birthdays
1984 - Brandon HammondActor
1969 - Tim BrownRock Musician (Boo Radleys)
1969 - Masaharu FukuyamaJapanese Singer-Songwriter Producer
1966 - Rick AstleySinger
1962 - Richie McDonaldCountry Singer
1962 - Axl Rose Singer Musician (Guns N' Roses)
1960 - Megan GallagherActress
1958 - Barry MillerActor
1957 - Kathy NajimyActress
1957 - Simon PhillipsRock Musician (Toto)
1957 - Robert TownsendActor-Director
1956 - Jon WamsleyActor
1950 - Natalie ColeGrammy-Award Winning Singer
1949 - Jim SheridanProducer-Director Writer
1945 - Bob MarleyJamaican Singer-Songwriter and Musician
1944 - Michael TuckerActor and Author
1943 - FabianActor and Teen Idol (50' and 60')
1943 - Gail HunnicuttSinger
1940 - Tom BrokawNews Journalist and Anchor
1939 - Mike FarrellActor (M*A*S*H)
1931 - Mamie Van DorenActress
1931 - Rip TornActor
1922 - Patrick McneeActor
1919 - Zsa Zsa GaborActress and Cop Slapper
1913 - Mary LeakeyBritish Archaeologist and Anthropologist
1911 - Ronald ReaganActor and 40th US President
1895 - Babe RuthBaseball Hall-of-Famer

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