Today is Sunday, Jan. 17, the 17th day of 2016. There are 349 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Jan. 17, 1916, the Professional Golfers’ Association of America had its beginnings as department store magnate Rodman Wanamaker hosted a luncheon of pro and amateur golfers in New York City. (The PGA of America was formally established on April 10, 1916.)
On this date:
In 1893, the 19th president of the United States, Rutherford B. Hayes, died in Fremont, Ohio, at age 70. Hawaii’s monarchy was overthrown as a group of businessmen and sugar planters forced Queen Lili’uokalani (lee-LEE’-oo-oh-kah-LAH’-nee) to abdicate.
In 1929, the cartoon character Popeye the Sailor made his debut in the “Thimble Theatre” comic strip.
In 1945, Soviet and Polish forces liberated Warsaw during World War II; Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, credited with saving tens of thousands of Jews, disappeared in Hungary while in Soviet custody.
In 1946, the United Nations Security Council held its first meeting, in London.
In 1950, the Great Brink’s Robbery took place as seven masked men held up a Brink’s garage in Boston, stealing $1.2 million in cash and $1.5 million in checks and money orders. (Although the entire gang was caught, only part of the loot was recovered.)
In 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower delivered his farewell address in which he warned against “the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.”
In 1966, a U.S. Air Force B-52 carrying four unarmed hydrogen bombs crashed on the Spanish coast. (Three of the bombs were quickly recovered, but the fourth wasn’t recovered until April.) The Simon & Garfunkel album “Sounds of Silence” was released by Columbia Records.
In 1977, convicted murderer Gary Gilmore, 36, was shot by a firing squad at Utah State Prison in the first U.S. execution in a decade.
In 1984, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios, Inc., ruled 5-4 that the use of home video cassette recorders to tape television programs for private viewing did not violate federal copyright laws.
In 1995, more than 6,000 people were killed when an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.2 devastated the city of Kobe (koh-bay), Japan.
In 1996, Sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman and nine followers were handed long prison sentences for plotting to blow up New York-area landmarks. Former U.S. Rep. Barbara Jordan, D-Texas, died in Austin at age 59.
In 2001, faced with an electricity crisis, California used rolling blackouts to cut off power to hundreds of thousands of people; Gov. Gray Davis signed an emergency order authorizing the state to buy power.
Ten years ago: The U.S. Supreme Court protected Oregon’s assisted-suicide law, ruling that doctors there who helped terminally ill patients die could not be arrested under federal drug laws. Hostage American reporter Jill Carroll appeared in a silent 20-second video aired by Al-Jazeera television, which said her abductors had given the United States 72 hours to free female prisoners in Iraq or she would be killed. (Carroll was freed unharmed on March 30, 2006.) California executed convicted killer Clarence Ray Allen a day after his 76th birthday.
Five years ago: Apple Inc. announced that its CEO, Steve Jobs, was taking his second medical leave of absence in two years. (Jobs died nine months later.) Rock promoter Don Kirshner, 76, died in Boca Raton, Florida.
One year ago: Pope Francis braved an approaching tropical storm to travel to the far eastern Philippines to comfort survivors of the deadly Typhoon Haiyan. Bill Cosby performed to a welcoming Denver audience, despite a protest by some 100 people chanting “Rape is not a joke!” and “No means no!” outside the Buell Theatre.
Today’s Birthdays: Actress Betty White is 94. Former FCC chairman Newton N. Minow is 90. Actor James Earl Jones is 85. Talk show host Maury Povich is 77. International Boxing Hall of Famer Muhammad Ali is 74. Pop singer Chris Montez is 74. Rhythm-and-blues singer William Hart (The Delfonics) is 71. Actress Joanna David is 69. Actress Jane Elliot (TV: “General Hospital”) is 69. Rock musician Mick Taylor is 68. Rhythm-and-blues singer Sheila Hutchinson (The Emotions) is 63. Singer Steve Earle is 61. Singer Paul Young is 60. Actor-comedian Steve Harvey is 59. Singer Susanna Hoffs (The Bangles) is 57. Movie director/screenwriter Brian Helgeland is 55. Actor-comedian Jim Carrey is 54. Actor Denis O’Hare is 54. First lady Michelle Obama is 52. Actor Joshua Malina is 50. Singer Shabba Ranks is 50. Rock musician Jon Wysocki is 48. Actor Naveen Andrews is 47. Electronic music DJ Tiesto is 47. Rapper Kid Rock is 45. Actor Freddy Rodriguez is 41. Actor-writer Leigh Whannel is 39. Actress-singer Zooey Deschanel is 36. Professional dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy (TV: “Dancing with the Stars”) is 36. Singer Ray J is 35. Actor Diogo Morgado is 35. Country singer Amanda Wilkinson is 34. DJ/singer Calvin Harris is 32. Folk-rock musician Jeremiah Fraites is 30. Actor Jonathan Keltz is 28. Actress Kathrine (cq) Herzer (TV: “Madam Secretary”) is 19.
Thought for Today: “The only thing wrong with immortality is that it tends to go on forever.” — Herb Caen, American newspaper columnist (1916-1997).