Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Saturday, May 7, the 128th day of 2016. There are 238 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On May 7, 1945, Germany signed an unconditional surrender at Allied headquarters in Rheims (rams), France, ending its role in World War II.

On this date:

In 1789, America’s first inaugural ball was held in New York in honor of President George Washington, who’d taken the oath of office a week earlier.

In 1824, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125, had its premiere in Vienna.

In 1915, a German U-boat torpedoed and sank the British liner RMS Lusitania off the southern coast of Ireland, killing 1,198 people, including 128 Americans, out of the nearly 2,000 on board.

In 1939, Germany and Italy announced a military and political alliance known as the Rome-Berlin Axis.

In 1941, Glenn Miller and His Orchestra recorded “Chattanooga Choo Choo” for RCA Victor.

In 1942, U.S. Army Gen. Jonathan Wainwright went on a Manila radio station to announce the Allied surrender of the Philippines to Japanese forces during World War II.

In 1946, Sony Corp. had its beginnings as the Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corp. was founded in the Japanese capital by Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka.

In 1954, the 55-day Battle of Dien Bien Phu in Vietnam ended with Vietnamese insurgents overrunning French forces.

In 1966, Kauai King won the Kentucky Derby; the event was telecast in color for the first time by CBS.

In 1975, President Gerald R. Ford formally declared an end to the “Vietnam era.” In Ho Chi Minh City – formerly Saigon – the Viet Cong celebrated its takeover.

In 1984, a $180 million out-of-court settlement was announced in the Agent Orange class-action suit brought by Vietnam veterans who charged they’d suffered injury from exposure to the defoliant.

In 1992, the latest addition to America’s space shuttle fleet, Endeavour, went on its first flight. A 203-year-old proposed constitutional amendment barring Congress from giving itself a midterm pay raise received enough votes for ratification as Michigan became the 38th state to approve it.

Ten years ago: Iran’s hard-line parliament threatened to pass legislation that would force the Tehran government to withdraw from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. Joe Torre got his 1,000th win as manager of the Yankees in an 8-5 victory over the Texas Rangers.

Five years ago: The U.S. released a handful of videos seized from Osama bin Laden’s hideout showing the terrorist leader watching newscasts of himself amid shabby surroundings. The Taliban unleashed a major assault on government buildings throughout Kandahar, Afghanistan. Animal Kingdom sped past the leaders in the turn at Churchill Downs and roared down the middle of the stretch to win the Kentucky Derby. Justin Verlander threw his second career no-hitter, leading the Detroit Tigers to a 9-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays. World Golf Hall of Famer Seve Ballesteros, 54, died in Pedrena, Spain. Former General Motors Chairman and CEO Robert Stempel, 77, died in West Palm Beach, Florida.

One year ago: After years of sharing power, British Prime Minister David Cameron pulled off an unexpected election triumph that gave the Conservative leader a second term with an outright parliamentary majority. A three-judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York ruled that the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of millions of Americans’ phone records was illegal. Alex Rodriguez passed Willie Mays for fourth on the career home run list, connecting for No. 661 and helping the New York Yankees beat the Baltimore Orioles 4-3.

Today’s Birthdays: Former Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., is 84. Rhythm-and-blues singer Thelma Houston is 73. Actress Robin Strasser is 71. Singer-songwriter Bill Danoff is 70. Rock musician Bill Kreutzmann (Grateful Dead) is 70. Rock musician Prairie Prince is 66. Movie writer-director Amy Heckerling is 64. Actor Michael E. Knight is 57. Rock musician Phil Campbell (Motorhead) is 55. Country musician Rick Schell is 53. Rock singer-musician Chris O’Connor (Primitive Radio Gods) is 51. Actress Traci Lords is 48. Singer Eagle-Eye Cherry is 45. Actor Breckin Meyer is 42. Rock musician Matt Helders (Arctic Monkeys) is 30. Actress-comedian Aidy Bryant is 29. Actor Taylor Abrahamse is 25. Actor Alexander Ludwig is 24. Actress Dylan Gelula is 22.

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