Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Sunday, April 24, the 115th day of 2016. There are 251 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On April 24, 1916, some 1,600 Irish nationalists launched the Easter Rising by seizing several key sites in Dublin. (The rising was put down by British forces five days later.)

On this date:

In 1792, the national anthem of France, “La Marseillaise” (lah mahr-say-YEHZ’), was composed by Captain Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle.

In 1800, Congress approved a bill establishing the Library of Congress.

In 1866, the first version of German composer Max Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in G-minor, Op. 26, was performed (the Concerto underwent a series of revisions by Bruch before achieving its final form).

In 1898, Spain declared war on the United States. (The United States responded in kind the next day.)

In 1915, what’s considered the start of the Armenian genocide began as the Ottoman Empire rounded up Armenian political and cultural leaders in Constantinople.

In 1932, in the Free State of Prussia, the Nazi Party gained a plurality of seats in parliamentary elections.

In 1953, British statesman Winston Churchill was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.

In 1962, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology achieved the first satellite relay of a television signal, using NASA’s Echo 1 balloon satellite to bounce a video image from Camp Parks, California, to Westford, Massachusetts.

In 1970, the People’s Republic of China launched its first satellite, which kept transmitting a song, “The East Is Red.”

In 1980, the United States launched an unsuccessful attempt to free the American hostages in Iran, a mission that resulted in the deaths of eight U.S. servicemen.

In 1986, Wallis, Duchess of Windsor, for whom King Edward VIII had given up the British throne, died in Paris at age 89.

In 1990, the space shuttle Discovery blasted off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, carrying the $1.5 billion Hubble Space Telescope.

Ten years ago: Terrorist bombings killed at least 23 people at a beach resort on Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. Speaking in Irvine, California, President George W. Bush said those calling for deporting all of the estimated 11 million immigrants in the U.S. illegally back to their home countries were being “unrealistic.” Rabbi Moses Teitelbaum, spiritual leader of an ultra-Orthodox Jewish sect, died in New York at age 91.

Five years ago: Pope Benedict XVI offered an Easter Sunday prayer for diplomacy to prevail over warfare in Libya and for citizens of the Middle East to build a new society. Taliban militants staged a massive jailbreak in Kandahar, Afghanistan, as some 480 inmates escaped through a tunnel that had been dug over a matter of months. Madame Ngo Dinh Nhu, 86, who’d served as South Vietnam’s unofficial first lady early in the Vietnam War, died in Rome.

One year ago: President Barack Obama marked the 10th anniversary of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, praising the nation’s spying operations as the most capable in the world. The presidents of Russia and France joined other leaders at ceremonies in Yerevan commemorating the estimated 1.5 million Armenian victims of the 1916 massacre by Ottoman Turks. In a long awaited interview about his gender identity, former Olympic champion Bruce Jenner told ABC’s Diane Sawyer said that “for all intents and purposes, I am a woman.”

Today’s Birthdays: Movie director-producer Richard Donner is 86. Actress Shirley MacLaine is 82. Author Sue Grafton is 76. Actor-singer Michael Parks is 76. Actress-singer-director Barbra Streisand is 74. Former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley is 74. Country singer Richard Sterban (The Oak Ridge Boys) is 73. Rock musician Doug Clifford (Creedence Clearwater Revival) is 71. Rock singer-musician Rob Hyman is 66. The acting Taoiseach of Ireland, Enda Kenny, is 65. Actor-playwright Eric Bogosian is 63. Rock singer-musician Jack Blades (Night Ranger) is 62. Actor Michael O’Keefe is 61. Rock musician David J (Bauhaus) is 59. Actor Glenn Morshower is 57. Rock musician Billy Gould is 53. Actor-comedian Cedric the Entertainer is 52. Actor Djimon Hounsou (JEYE’-mihn OHN’-soo) is 52. Rock musician Patty Schemel is 49. Rock musician Aaron Comess (Spin Doctors) is 48. Actor Aidan Gillen is 48. Actress Melinda Clarke is 47. Actor Rory McCann is 47. Latin pop singer Alejandro Fernandez is 45. Country-rock musician Brad Morgan (Drive-By Truckers) is 45. Rock musician Brian Marshall (Creed; Alter Bridge) is 43. Actor Derek Luke is 42. Actor Eric Balfour is 39. Actress Rebecca Mader is 39. Country singer Rebecca Lynn Howard is 37. Country singer Danny Gokey is 36. Actor Austin Nichols is 36. Actress Sasha Barrese is 35. Contemporary Christian musician Jasen Rauch (Red) is 35. Singer Kelly Clarkson is 34. Rock singer-musician Tyson Ritter (The All-American Rejects) is 32. Actor Doc Shaw is 24. Golfer Lydia Ko is 19.

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