Today in History


Today in History

Today is Sunday, April 30, the 120th day of 2017. There are 245 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On April 30, 1947, President Harry S. Truman signed a resolution officially confirming the name of Hoover Dam, which had also come to be known as “Boulder Dam.”

On this date:

In 1517, Londoners began attacking foreign residents in rioting that carried over into the next day; no deaths were reported from what came to be known as “Evil May Day,” but about a dozen rioters, maybe more, ended up being executed.

In 1789, George Washington took the oath of office in New York as the first president of the United States.

In 1803, the United States purchased the Louisiana Territory from France for 60 million francs, the equivalent of about $15 million.

In 1812, Louisiana became the 18th state of the Union.

In 1900, engineer John Luther “Casey” Jones of the Illinois Central Railroad died in a train wreck near Vaughan, Mississippi, after staying at the controls in a successful effort to save the passengers.

In 1939, the New York World’s Fair officially opened with a ceremony that included an address by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

In 1945, as Soviet troops approached his Berlin bunker, Adolf Hitler committed suicide along with his wife of one day, Eva Braun.

In 1968, New York City police forcibly removed student demonstrators occupying five buildings at Columbia University.

In 1973, President Richard Nixon announced the resignations of top aides H.R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman, Attorney General Richard G. Kleindienst (KLYN’-deenst) and White House counsel John Dean, who was actually fired.

In 1975, the Vietnam War ended as the South Vietnamese capital of Saigon fell to Communist forces.

In 1988, Gen. Manuel Noriega, waving a machete, vowed at a rally to keep fighting U.S. efforts to oust him as Panama’s military ruler.

In 1997, the U.S. Senate approved, 85-13, the nomination of Alexis Herman to be labor secretary. ABC-TV aired the “coming out” episode of the situation comedy “Ellen” in which the title character played by Ellen DeGeneres acknowledged her homosexuality, weeks after DeGeneres revealed in Time magazine that she, too, was a lesbian.

Ten years ago: President George W. Bush said he wanted to work with Democrats on compromise legislation to pay for the Iraq war but told a Rose Garden news conference he would carry through on his threat to veto any spending bill that set a timetable for U.S. troop withdrawal. A British judge sentenced five al-Qaida-linked men, all British citizens, to life in prison for plotting to attack London targets, including a nightclub, power plants and shopping mall with bombs. An Israeli government probe faulted Prime Minister Ehud Olmert for what it called “very severe failures” in Israel’s war with Hezbollah militants in Lebanon. Actor Tom Poston died in Los Angeles at age 85.

Five years ago: President Barack Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda (yoh-shih-HEE’-koh NOH’-duh), meeting at the White House, decried aggressive acts from North Korea, including a recent failed rocket launch, and vowed to maintain a unified front against such provocations. A ferry carrying more than 300 people capsized in a river in northeast India, killing some 100 people and leaving about as many missing.

One year ago: Anti-government protesters tore down walls and poured into the Iraqi capital’s heavily fortified Green Zone, where they stormed parliament in a major escalation of a political crisis that had simmered for months. President Barack Obama performed his brand of sharp-tongued comedy at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner for the last time — wrapping up with “Obama out” and dropping the mic as the crowd cheered. The Rev. Daniel Berrigan, 94, a Roman Catholic priest and peace activist who was imprisoned for burning draft files in a protest against the Vietnam War, died in New York.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Cloris Leachman is 91. Singer Willie Nelson is 84. Actor Burt Young is 77. King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden is 71. Movie director Allan Arkush is 69. Actor Perry King is 69. Singer-musician Wayne Kramer is 69. Singer Merrill Osmond is 64. Movie director Jane Campion is 63. Movie director Lars von Trier is 61. Former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is 58. Actor Paul Gross is 58. Basketball Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas is 56. Country musician Robert Reynolds is 55. Actor Adrian Pasdar is 52. Rock singer J.R. Richards (Dishwalla) is 50. Rapper Turbo B (Snap) is 50. Rock musician Clark Vogeler is 48. Rhythm-and-blues singer Chris “Choc” Dalyrimple (Soul For Real) is 46. Rock musician Chris Henderson (3 Doors Down) is 46. Country singer Carolyn Dawn Johnson is 46. Actress Lisa Dean Ryan is 45. Rhythm-and-blues singer Akon is 44. Rhythm-and-blues singer Jeff Timmons (98 Degrees) is 44. Actor Johnny Galecki is 42. Singer-musician Cole Deggs (Cole Deggs and the Lonesome) is 41. Actor Sam Heughan is 37. Actor Kunal Nayyar is 36. Rapper Lloyd Banks is 35. Actress Kirsten Dunst is 35. Country singer Tyler Wilkinson (The Wilkinsons) is 33. Actress Dianna Agron is 31.

Thought for Today: “Upper classes are a nation’s past; the middle class is its future.” — Ayn Rand, Russian-born author (1905-1982).