Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Saturday, October 24, the 297th day of 2015. There are 68 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On October 24, 1945, the United Nations officially came into existence as its charter took effect.

On this date:

In 1537, Jane Seymour, the third wife of England’s King Henry VIII, died 12 days after giving birth to Prince Edward, later King Edward VI.

In 1648, the Peace of Westphalia (west-FAY’-lee-uh) ended the Thirty Years War and effectively destroyed the Holy Roman Empire.

In 1861, the first transcontinental telegraph message was sent by Chief Justice Stephen J. Field of California from San Francisco to President Abraham Lincoln in Washington, D.C., over a line built by the Western Union Telegraph Co.

In 1936, the short story “The Devil and Daniel Webster” by Stephen Vincent Benet was published in The Saturday Evening Post.

In 1939, Benny Goodman and His Orchestra recorded their signature theme, “Let’s Dance,” for Columbia Records in New York. DuPont began publicly selling its nylon stockings in Wilmington, Delaware.

In 1940, the 40-hour work week went into effect under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938.

In 1952, Republican presidential candidate Dwight D. Eisenhower declared in Detroit, “I shall go to Korea” as he promised to end the conflict. (He made the visit over a month later.)

In 1962, a naval quarantine of Cuba ordered by President John F. Kennedy went into effect during the missile crisis.

In 1972, Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson, who’d broken Major League Baseball’s color barrier in 1947, died in Stamford, Connecticut, at age 53.

In 1980, the merchant freighter SS Poet departed Philadelphia, bound for Port Said (sah-EED’), Egypt, with a crew of 34 and a cargo of grain; it disappeared en route and has not been heard from since.

In 1992, the Toronto Blue Jays became the first non-U.S. team to win the World Series as they defeated the Atlanta Braves, 4-3, in Game 6.

In 2002, authorities apprehended Army veteran John Allen Muhammad and teenager Lee Boyd Malvo near Myersville, Maryland, in the Washington-area sniper attacks. (Malvo was later sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole; Muhammad was sentenced to death and executed in 2009.)

Ten years ago: Hurricane Wilma knifed through Florida with winds up to 125 mph. Civil rights icon Rosa Parks died in Detroit at age 92. President George W. Bush nominated economic adviser Ben Bernanke (bur-NANG’-kee) to succeed Alan Greenspan as Federal Reserve chairman. Bombs went off near the Palestine and Sheraton hotels in Baghdad, killing as many as 17 Iraqi pedestrians and security guards.

Five years ago: Following the latest release of secret U.S. military documents by WikiLeaks, British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg told BBC television that allegations of prisoner abuse and civilian killings in Iraq were extremely serious and needed to be investigated. Playwright Joseph Stein, who wrote the book for the classic Broadway musical “Fiddler on the Roof,” died in New York at age 98.

One year ago: A shooting rampage in Northern California claimed the lives of Sacramento County Deputy Danny Oliver, then Placer County sheriff’s detective Michael Davis Jr. (a suspect, Luis Enrique Monroy Bracamontes, faces charges of murder and attempted murder). Jaylen Fryberg, a student at Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Washington state, fatally shot four friends he had invited to lunch and wounded a fifth teen before killing himself. A coordinated militant assault on an army checkpoint in the Sinai Peninsula killed 31 Egyptian troops. Actress Marcia Strassman, who’d played Gabe Kaplan’s wife, Julie, on the 1970s sitcom “Welcome Back, Kotter,” died in Sherman Oaks, California, at age 66. Ted Bishop was ousted as president of the PGA of America over a sexist tweet and Facebook post directed at Ian Poulter.

Today’s Birthdays: Football Hall-of-Famer Y.A. Tittle is 89. Rock musician Bill Wyman is 79. Actor F. Murray Abraham is 76. Movie director-screenwriter David S. Ward is 70. Actor Kevin Kline is 68. Former NAACP President Kweisi Mfume (kwah-EE’-see oom-FOO’-may) is 67. Country musician Billy Thomas (Terry McBride and the Ride) is 62. Actor Doug Davidson is 61. Actor B.D. Wong is 55. Singer Michael Trent (Americana duo Shovels & Rope) is 38. Rock musician Ben Gillies (Silverchair) is 36. Singer-actress Monica Arnold is 35. Actress-comedian Casey Wilson is 35. Rhythm-and-blues singer Adrienne Bailon (3lw) is 32. Actor Tim Pocock is 30. R&B singer-rapper-actor Drake is 29. Actress Shenae Grimes is 26. Actress Eliza Taylor is 26. Olympic gold medal gymnast Kyla Ross is 19. Actor Hudson Yang (TV: “Fresh Off the Boat”) is 12.

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