Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Saturday, June 4, the 156th day of 2016. There are 210 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On June 4, 1986, Jonathan Jay Pollard, a former U.S. Navy intelligence analyst, pleaded guilty in Washington to conspiring to deliver information related to the national defense to Israel. (Pollard, sentenced to life in prison, was released on parole on Nov. 20, 2015.)

On this date:

In 1783, the Montgolfier brothers first publicly demonstrated their hot-air balloon, which did not carry any passengers, over Annonay, France.

In 1784, opera singer Elisabeth Thible became the first woman to make a non-tethered flight aboard a Montgolfier hot-air balloon, over Lyon, France.

In 1892, the Sierra Club was incorporated in San Francisco.

In 1919, Congress approved the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, guaranteeing citizens the right to vote regardless of their gender, and sent it to the states for ratification.

In 1939, the German ocean liner MS St. Louis, carrying more than 900 Jewish refugees from Germany, was turned away from the Florida coast by U.S. officials.

In 1940, during World War II, the Allied military evacuation of some 338,000 troops from Dunkirk, France, ended. British Prime Minister Winston Churchill declared: “We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.”

In 1942, the World War II Battle of Midway began, resulting in a decisive American victory against Japan and marking the turning point of the war in the Pacific.

In 1944, U-505, a German submarine, was captured by a U.S. Navy task group in the south Atlantic; it was the first such capture of an enemy vessel at sea by the U.S. Navy since the War of 1812. The U.S. Fifth Army began liberating Rome.

In 1954, French Premier Joseph Laniel and Vietnamese Premier Buu Loc signed treaties in Paris according “complete independence” to Vietnam.

In 1972, a jury in San Jose, California, acquitted radical activist Angela Davis of murder and kidnapping for her alleged connection to a deadly courthouse shootout in Marin County in 1970.

In 1990, Dr. Jack Kevorkian carried out his first publicly assisted suicide, helping Janet Adkins, a 54-year-old Alzheimer’s patient from Portland, Oregon, end her life in Oakland County, Michigan.

In 1998, a federal judge sentenced Terry Nichols to life in prison for his role in the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

Ten years ago: Peru’s former president, Alan Garcia, won the country’s presidential runoff election. A Palestinian standoff intensified after Hamas rejected an ultimatum from President Mahmoud Abbas (mahk-MOOD’ ah-BAHS’) to endorse a plan implicitly recognizing Israel.

Five years ago: China’s Li Na captured her first Grand Slam singles title, becoming the first tennis player from China, man or woman, to achieve such a feat; Na beat Francesca Schiavone 6-4, 7-6 (0) in the French Open final. Former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger, 80, died in Charlottesville, Virginia.

One year ago: The Department of Homeland Security announced that hackers had broken into the U.S. government personnel office and stolen identifying information of at least 4 million federal workers. (The breach was later said to have totaled 21.5 million current and former federal employees and job applicants; Chinese hackers were suspected of being behind the cyberattack.) Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry opened his second bid for the Republican presidential nomination. A huge explosion at a gas station in Ghana’s capital of Accra left at least 160 people dead.

Today’s Birthdays: Sex therapist and media personality Dr. Ruth Westheimer is 88. Actor Bruce Dern is 80. Musician Roger Ball is 72. Actress-singer Michelle Phillips is 72. Jazz musician Anthony Braxton is 71. Rock musician Danny Brown (The Fixx) is 65. Actor Parker Stevenson is 64. Actor Keith David is 60. Blues singer-musician Tinsley Ellis is 59. Actress Julie Gholson is 58. Actor Eddie Velez is 58. Singer-musician El DeBarge is 55. Actress Julie White is 55. Actress Lindsay Frost is 54. Actor Sean Pertwee is 52. Tennis player Andrea Jaeger is 51. Opera singer Cecilia Bartoli is 50. Rhythm-and-blues singer Al B. Sure! is 48. Actor Scott Wolf is 48. Actor-comedian Rob Huebel is 47. Comedian Horatio Sanz is 47. Actor Noah Wyle is 45. Rock musician Stefan Lessard (The Dave Matthews Band) is 42. Actor-comedian Russell Brand is 41. Actress Angelina Jolie is 41. Actor Theo Rossi is 41. Alt-country singer Kasey Chambers is 40. Rock musician JoJo Garza (Los Lonely Boys) is 36. Country musician Dean Berner (Edens Edge) is 35. Model Bar Refaeli (ruh-FEHL’-lee) is 31. Olympic gold medal figure skater Evan Lysacek is 31. Americana singer Shakey Graves is 29. Rock musician Zac Farro is 26.

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