Today in history


Today is Sunday, June 14, the 165th day of 2015. There are 200 days left in the year. This is Flag Day.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress, meeting in Philadelphia, adopted the original design of the Stars and Stripes, specifying a flag containing thirteen red and white stripes and thirteen stars.

On this date:

In 1775, the Continental Army, forerunner of the United States Army, was created.

In 1801, former American Revolutionary War general and notorious turncoat Benedict Arnold died in London.

In 1922, Warren G. Harding became the first president heard on radio, as Baltimore station WEAR broadcast his speech dedicating the Francis Scott Key memorial at Fort McHenry.

In 1934, Max Baer defeated Primo Carnera with an 11th round TKO to win the world heavyweight boxing championship in Long Island City, New York.

In 1940, German troops entered Paris during World War II; the same day, the Nazis began transporting prisoners to the Auschwitz (OWSH’-vitz) concentration camp in German-occupied Poland.

In 1943, the U.S. Supreme Court, in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, ruled 6-3 that children in public schools could not be forced to salute the flag of the United States.

In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a measure adding the phrase “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance.

In 1965, Paul McCartney recorded the main track for his song “Yesterday” at EMI Studios on Abbey Road in London.

In 1972, the Environmental Protection Agency ordered a ban on domestic use of the pesticide DDT, to take effect at year’s end.

In 1982, Argentine forces surrendered to British troops on the disputed Falkland Islands.

In 1985, the 17-day hijack ordeal of TWA Flight 847 began as a pair of Lebanese Shiite (SHEE’-eyet) Muslim extremists seized the jetliner shortly after takeoff from Athens, Greece.

In 1990, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld, 6-3, police checkpoints that examined drivers for signs of intoxication.

Ten years ago: U.S. Army deserter Charles Jenkins, who’d crossed into North Korea in 1965, arrived in the United States for his first visit in 40 years. Michelle Wie, 15, became the first female player to qualify for an adult male U.S. Golf Association championship, tying for first place in a 36-hole U.S. Amateur Public Links sectional qualifying tournament.

Five years ago: During his latest visit to the Gulf Coast, President Barack Obama promised that “things are going to return to normal” and that the region’s fouled waters would be in even better shape than before the catastrophic BP oil spill. A judge in Stockton, California, sentenced Sunday school teacher Melissa Huckaby to life in prison without the possibility of parole for kidnapping and murdering 8-year-old Sandra Cantu.

One year ago: President Barack Obama forced union workers in Philadelphia’s commuter rail strike to return to the job, granting Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett’s request to create a presidential emergency board to mediate the contract dispute. Pro-Russia separatists shot down a Ukrainian transport plane, killing all 49 people on board. Afghans braved threats of violence and searing heat to vote in a presidential runoff (Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai was eventually declared the winner).

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Marla Gibbs is 84. House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md., is 76. Writer Peter Mayle is 76. Actor Jack Bannon is 75. Country-rock musician Spooner Oldham is 72. Rock singer Rod Argent (The Zombies; Argent) is 70. Real estate mogul and TV personality Donald Trump is 69. Singer Janet Lennon (The Lennon Sisters) is 69. Rock musician Barry Melton is 68. Rock musician Alan White (Yes) is 66. Actor Eddie Mekka is 63. Actor Will Patton is 61. Olympic gold-medal speed skater Eric Heiden (HY’-dun) is 57. Jazz musician Marcus Miller is 56. Singer Boy George is 54. Rock musician Chris DeGarmo is 52. Actress Traylor Howard is 49. Actress Yasmine Bleeth is 47. Actor Faizon Love is 47. Actor Stephen Wallem is 47. International Tennis Hall of Famer Steffi Graf is 46. Screenwriter Diablo Cody is 37. Actor Torrance Coombs is 32. Actor J.R. Martinez is 32. Actor-singer Kevin McHale is 27. Actress Lucy Hale is 26. Pop singer Jesy Nelson (Little Mix) is 24. Country singer Joel Crouse is 23. Actor Daryl Sabara is 23.

Thought for Today: “The flag of the United States has not been created by rhetorical sentences in declarations of independence and in bills of rights. It has been created by the experience of a great people, and nothing is written upon it that has not been written by their life. It is the embodiment, not of a sentiment, but of a history.” — President Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924), in an address delivered on June 14, 1915.

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