Today in History


By The Associated Press

Today is Saturday, July 30, the 212th day of 2016. There are 154 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On July 30, 1916, German saboteurs blew up a munitions plant on Black Tom, an island near Jersey City, New Jersey. Although casualties were limited (about a dozen people were killed), the explosion was so huge, it was felt throughout New York City and damaged the Statue of Liberty.

On this date:

In 1619, the first representative assembly in America convened in Jamestown in the Virginia Colony.

In 1729, Baltimore, Maryland, was founded.

In 1864, during the Civil War, Union forces tried to take Petersburg, Virginia, by exploding a gunpowder-laden mine shaft beneath Confederate defense lines; the attack failed.

In 1918, poet Joyce Kilmer, a sergeant in the 165th U.S. Infantry Regiment, was killed during the Second Battle of the Marne in World War I. (Kilmer is remembered for his poem “Trees.”)

In 1932, the Summer Olympic Games opened in Los Angeles.

In 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a bill creating a women’s auxiliary agency in the Navy known as “Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service” — WAVES for short.

In 1945, the Portland class heavy cruiser USS Indianapolis, having just delivered components of the atomic bomb to Tinian in the Mariana Islands, was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine; only 317 out of nearly 1,200 men survived.

In 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a measure making “In God We Trust” the national motto, replacing “E Pluribus Unum” (Out of many, one).

In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed a measure creating Medicare, which began operating the following year.

In 1975, former Teamsters union president Jimmy Hoffa disappeared in suburban Detroit; although presumed dead, his remains have never been found.

In 1980, Israel’s Knesset passed a law reaffirming all of Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish state.

In 1996, actress Claudette Colbert died in Barbados at age 92.

Ten years ago: Israel agreed to a 48-hour suspension of aerial activity over southern Lebanon after its bombing of a Lebanese village that killed 29 people. Congo held its first multiparty election in four decades (incumbent President Joseph Kabila later won a runoff).

Five years ago: NATO jets bombed three Libyan state TV satellite transmitters in Tripoli, targeting a propaganda tool in Moammar Gadhafi’s fight against rebels. Caribbean Airlines Flight 523 from New York, a Boeing 737-800, slid off the end of a rainy runway in Guyana and broke in half; all 163 people on board survived.

One year ago: The Associated Press released the results of a five-month independent study it had commissioned which found that athletes competing in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro would be swimming and boating in waters so rife with sewage bacteria and viruses, they faced the risk of becoming seriously ill. The Afghan Taliban confirmed the death of longtime leader Mullah Mohammad Omar and appointed his successor, Mullah Akhtar Mansoor. Singer Lynn Anderson, 67, whose strong, husky voice carried her to the top of the charts with “(I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden,” died in Nashville, Tennessee.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor Edd (correct) “Kookie” Byrnes is 83. Former Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig is 82. Blues musician Buddy Guy is 80. Movie director Peter Bogdanovich is 77. Feminist activist Eleanor Smeal is 77. Former U.S. Rep. Patricia Schroeder is 76. Singer Paul Anka is 75. Jazz musician David Sanborn is 71. Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is 69. Actor William Atherton is 69. Actor Jean Reno (zhahn rih-NOH’) is 68. Blues singer-musician Otis Taylor is 68. Actor Frank Stallone is 66. Actor Ken Olin is 62. Actress Delta Burke is 60. Law professor Anita Hill is 60. Singer-songwriter Kate Bush is 58. Country singer Neal McCoy is 58. Actor Richard Burgi is 58. Movie director Richard Linklater is 56. Actor Laurence Fishburne is 55. Actress Lisa Kudrow is 53. Bluegrass musician Danny Roberts (The Grascals) is 53. Country musician Dwayne O’Brien is 53. Actress Vivica A. Fox is 52. Actor Terry Crews is 48. Actor Simon Baker is 47. Actor Donnie Keshawarz is 47. Movie director Christopher Nolan is 46. Actor Tom Green is 45. Rock musician Brad Hargreaves (Third Eye Blind) is 45. Actress Christine Taylor is 45. Actor-comedian Dean Edwards is 43. Actress Hilary Swank is 42. Olympic gold medal beach volleyball player Misty May-Treanor is 39. Actress Jaime Pressly is 39. Alt-country singer-musician Seth Avett (AY’-veht) is 36. Actress April Bowlby is 36. Actress Yvonne Strahovski is 34. Actress Gina Rodriguez is 32. Actor Nico Tortorella is 28. Actress Joey King is 17.

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