Today in History
Today is Thursday, Aug. 16, the 228th day of 2018. There are 137 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On August 16, 1987, 156 people were killed when Northwest Airlines Flight 255 crashed while trying to take off from Detroit; the sole survivor was 4-year-old Cecelia Cichan.
On this date:
In 1812, Detroit fell to British and Indian forces in the War of 1812.
In 1858, a telegraphed message from Britain’s Queen Victoria to President James Buchanan was transmitted over the recently laid trans-Atlantic cable.
In 1861, President Abraham Lincoln issued Proclamation 86, which prohibited the states of the Union from engaging in commercial trade with states that were in rebellion — i.e., the Confederacy.
In 1920, Ray Chapman of the Cleveland Indians was struck in the head by a pitch thrown by Carl Mays of the New York Yankees; Chapman died the following morning.
In 1948, baseball legend Babe Ruth died in New York at age 53.
In 1954, Sports Illustrated was first published by Time Inc.
In 1956, Adlai E. Stevenson was nominated for president at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago.
In 1962, The Beatles fired their original drummer, Pete Best, replacing him with Ringo Starr.
In 1977, Elvis Presley died at his Graceland estate in Memphis, Tennessee, at age 42.
In 1987, people worldwide began a two-day celebration of the “harmonic convergence,” which heralded what believers called the start of a new, purer age of humankind.
In 1991, Pope John Paul II began the first-ever papal visit to Hungary.
In 2003, Idi Amin, the former dictator of Uganda, died in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia; he was believed to have been about 80.
Ten years ago: At the Beijing Olympics, Michael Phelps touched the wall a hundredth of a second ahead of Serbia’s Milorad Cavic to win the 100-meter butterfly, giving Phelps his seventh gold medal of the Games, tying Mark Spitz’s performance in the 1972 Munich Games. Usain Bolt of Jamaica ran the 100-meter dash in a stunning world-record time of 9.69 seconds. Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres and actress Portia de Rossi were married at their Beverly Hills home.
Five years ago: In a spacewalk lasting seven hours and 29 minutes, Russian cosmonauts rigged cable outside the International Space Station for a new lab that was due to arrive in a few months.
One year ago: The University of Florida denied a request by white supremacist Richard Spencer to rent space on the campus for a September event. (The university later allowed Spencer to appear in October, saying it was legally obligated to allow the expression of many viewpoints.) President Donald Trump disbanded two White House business councils, amid criticism from CEOs for his remarks on the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Today’s Birthdays: Actress Ann Blyth is 90. Actor Gary Clarke is 85. Actress Julie Newmar is 85. Actress-singer Ketty Lester is 84. Actor John Standing is 84. College Football Hall of Famer and NFL player Bill Glass is 83. Actress Anita Gillette is 82. Actress Carole Shelley is 79. Country singer Billy Joe Shaver is 79. Movie director Bruce Beresford is 78. Actor Bob Balaban is 73. Ballerina Suzanne Farrell is 73. Actress Lesley Ann Warren is 72. Rock singer-musician Joey Spampinato is 70. Actor Marshall Manesh is 68. Actor Reginald VelJohnson is 66. TV personality Kathie Lee Gifford is 65. Rhythm-and-blues singer J.T. Taylor is 65. Movie director James Cameron is 64. Actor Jeff Perry is 63. Rock musician Tim Farriss (INXS) is 61. Actress Laura Innes is 61. Singer Madonna is 60. Actress Angela Bassett is 60. Actor Timothy Hutton is 58. Actor Steve Carell is 56. Former tennis player Jimmy Arias is 54. Actor-singer Donovan Leitch is 51. Actor Andy Milder is 50. Actor Seth Peterson is 48. Country singer Emily Robison (The Dixie Chicks) is 46. Actor George Stults is 43. Singer Vanessa Carlton is 38. Actor Cam Gigandet is 36. Actress Agnes Bruckner is 33. Singer-musician Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes) is 33. Actress Cristin Milioti is 33. Actor Shawn Pyfrom is 32. Country singer Ashton Shepherd is 32. Actor Okieriete Onaodowan is 31. Country singer Dan Smyers (Dan & Shay) is 31. Actor Kevin G. Schmidt is 30. Actress Rumer Willis is 30. Actor Parker Young is 30. Rapper Young Thug is 27. Actor Cameron Monaghan is 25. Singer-pianist Greyson Chance is 21.
Thought for Today: “The most persistent threat to freedom, to the rights of Americans, is fear.” — George Meany (born this date in 1894, died in 1980).