Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Wednesday, April 13, the 104th day of 2016. There are 262 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On April 13, 1970, Apollo 13, four-fifths of the way to the moon, was crippled when a tank containing liquid oxygen burst. (The astronauts managed to return safely.)

On this date:

In 1613, Pocahontas, daughter of Chief Powhatan, was captured by English Capt. Samuel Argall in the Virginia Colony. (During a yearlong captivity, Pocahontas converted to Christianity and ultimately opted to stay with the English.)

In 1742, Handel’s “Messiah” had its first public performance in Dublin, Ireland.

In 1743, the third president of the United States, Thomas Jefferson, was born in Shadwell in the Virginia Colony.

In 1861, at the start of the Civil War, Fort Sumter in South Carolina fell to Confederate forces.

In 1912, the Royal Flying Corps, a predecessor of Britain’s Royal Air Force, was created.

In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated the Jefferson Memorial in Washington D.C., on the 200th anniversary of the third American president’s birth.

In 1958, Van Cliburn of the United States won the first International Tchaikovsky Competition for piano in Moscow; Russian Valery Klimov won the violin competition.

In 1964, Sidney Poitier became the first black performer in a leading role to win an Academy Award for his performance in “Lilies of the Field.”

In 1965, 16-year-old Lawrence Wallace Bradford, Jr. was appointed by New York Republican Jacob Javits to be the first black page of the U.S. Senate.

In 1975, the President of Chad, Francois Tombalbaye (tahm-bahl-BAH’-yeh), was killed in a military coup.

In 1986, Pope John Paul II visited the Great Synagogue of Rome in the first recorded papal visit of its kind to a Jewish house of worship.

In 1992, the Great Chicago Flood took place as the city’s century-old tunnel system and adjacent basements filled with water from the Chicago River.

Ten years ago: Confessed al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui (zak-uh-REE’-uhs moo-SOW’-ee) expressed no remorse for his role in the 9/11 attacks as he took the stand for the second time in his death-penalty trial in Alexandria, Virginia. British author Dame Muriel Spark died in Florence, Italy, at age 88.

Five years ago: Ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and his two sons were detained for investigation of corruption, abuse of power and killings of protesters. A federal jury in San Francisco convicted Barry Bonds of a single charge of obstruction of justice, but failed to reach a verdict on the three counts at the heart of allegations that he’d knowingly used steroids and human growth hormone and lied to a grand jury about it. (Bonds’ conviction for obstruction was ultimately overturned.) The NBA fined Kobe Bryant $100,000 for using a derogatory gay term in frustration over a referee’s call.

One year ago: Republican Sen. Marco Rubio entered the 2016 presidential race with a rally in Miami. A federal judge in Washington sentenced former Blackwater security guard Nicholas Slatten to life in prison and three others to 30-year terms for their roles in a 2007 shooting in Baghdad’s Nisoor Square that killed 14 Iraqi civilians and wounded 17 others. A judge in Phoenix sentenced Jodi Arias to life in prison for killing her ex-boyfriend, Travis Alexander. Guenter Grass, 87, the Nobel-winning German writer who gave voice to the generation that came of age during the horrors of the Nazi era but later ran into controversy over his own World War II past and stance toward Israel, died in Luebeck, Germany.

Today’s Birthdays: Movie director Stanley Donen is 92. Former Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, R-Colo., is 83. Actor Lyle Waggoner is 81. Actor Edward Fox is 79. Actor Paul Sorvino is 77. Rhythm-and-blues singer Lester Chambers is 76. Movie-TV composer Bill Conti is 74. Rock musician Jack Casady is 72. Actor Tony Dow is 71. Singer Al Green is 70. Actor Ron Perlman is 66. Actor William Sadler is 66. Singer Peabo Bryson is 65. Bandleader/rock musician Max Weinberg is 65. Bluegrass singer-musician Sam Bush is 64. Rock musician Jimmy Destri is 62. Singer-musician Louis Johnson (The Brothers Johnson) is 61. Comedian Gary Kroeger is 59. Actress Saundra Santiago is 59. Sen. Bob Casey Jr., D-Pa., is 56. Rock musician Joey Mazzola (Sponge) is 55. Chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov is 53. Actress Page Hannah is 52. Actress-comedian Caroline Rhea (RAY) is 52. Rock musician Lisa Umbarger is 51. Rock musician Marc Ford is 50. Reggae singer Capleton is 49. Actor Ricky Schroder is 46. Rock singer Aaron Lewis (Staind) is 44. Actor Bokeem Woodbine is 43. Singer Lou Bega is 41. Actor-producer Glenn Howerton is 40. Actor Kyle Howard is 38. Actress Kelli Giddish is 36. Actress Courtney Peldon is 35. Pop singer Nellie McKay (mih-KY’) is 34. Rapper/singer Ty Dolla $ign is 34. Actress Allison Williams is 28. Actress Hannah Marks is 23.

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