Today in History
Today is Sunday, Oct. 29, the 302nd day of 2017. There are 63 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Oct. 29, 2012, Superstorm Sandy slammed ashore in New Jersey and slowly marched inland, devastating coastal communities and causing widespread power outages; the storm and its aftermath were blamed for at least 182 deaths in the U.S.
On this date:
In 1618, Sir Walter Raleigh, the English courtier, military adventurer and poet, was executed in London for treason.
In 1787, the opera “Don Giovanni” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had its world premiere in Prague.
In 1901, President William McKinley’s assassin, Leon Czolgosz (CHAWL’-gahsh), was electrocuted.
In 1929, Wall Street crashed on “Black Tuesday,” heralding the start of America’s Great Depression.
In 1940, a blindfolded Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson drew the first number — 158 — from a glass bowl in America’s first peacetime military draft.
In 1947, former first lady Frances Cleveland Preston died in Baltimore at age 83.
In 1956, during the Suez Canal crisis, Israel invaded Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. “The Huntley-Brinkley Report” premiered as NBC’s nightly television newscast.
In 1957, former MGM studio boss Louis B. Mayer died in Los Angeles.
In 1967, the counterculture rock musical “Hair” officially opened off-Broadway at Joseph Papp’s Public Theater 12 days after beginning previews. Expo 67 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, closed after six months.
In 1979, on the 50th anniversary of the great stock market crash, anti-nuclear protesters tried but failed to shut down the New York Stock Exchange.
In 1987, following the confirmation defeat of Robert H. Bork to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, President Ronald Reagan announced his choice of Douglas H. Ginsburg, a nomination that fell apart over revelations of Ginsburg’s previous marijuana use. Jazz great Woody Herman died in Los Angeles at age 74.
In 1994, Francisco Martin Duran fired more than two dozen shots from a semiautomatic rifle at the White House. (Duran was later convicted of trying to assassinate President Bill Clinton and was sentenced to 40 years in prison.)
Ten years ago: A suicide bomber rode his bicycle into a crowd of police recruits in Baqouba, Iraq, killing some 30 people. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert announced he had prostate cancer, but would continue to perform his duties. Authorities in Chad charged six French charity workers with kidnapping after they tried to put 103 children on a plane to France, claiming they were orphans from Sudan’s conflict-wracked Darfur region. (The charity workers were later convicted, jailed for several months, then pardoned.) A Moscow court sentenced Alexander Pichushkin, convicted of 48 murders, to life imprisonment, ending one of Russia’s worst serial killer cases.
Five years ago: Letitia Baldrige, the White House social secretary during the Kennedy administration who came to be regarded as an authority on etiquette, died in Bethesda, Maryland, at age 86.
One year ago: Hillary Clinton lashed out at the FBI’s handling of a new email review, leading a chorus of Democratic leaders who declared the bureau’s actions just days before the election were “unprecedented” and “deeply troubling.” The Cleveland Indians moved within one victory of their first championship since 1948, routing the Chicago Cubs 7-2.
Today’s Birthdays: Bluegrass singer-musician Sonny Osborne (The Osborne Brothers) is 80. Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is 79. Country singer Lee Clayton is 75. Rock musician Denny Laine is 73. Singer Melba Moore is 72. Musician Peter Green is 71. Actor Richard Dreyfuss is 70. Actress Kate Jackson is 69. Actor Dan Castellaneta (TV: “The Simpsons”) is 60. Country musician Steve Kellough (Wild Horses) is 60. Comic strip artist Tom Wilson (“Ziggy”) is 60. Actress Finola Hughes is 58. Singer Randy Jackson is 56. Rock musician Peter Timmins (Cowboy Junkies) is 52. Actress Joely Fisher is 50. Rapper Paris is 50. Actor Rufus Sewell is 50. Actor Grayson McCouch (mih-COOCH’) is 49. Rock singer SA Martinez (311) is 48. Actress Winona Ryder is 46. Actress Tracee Ellis Ross is 45. Actress Gabrielle Union is 45. Actor Trevor Lissauer is 44. Olympic gold medal bobsledder Vonetta Flowers is 44. Actress Milena Govich is 41. Actor Jon Abrahams is 40. Actor Brendan Fehr is 40. Actor Ben Foster is 37. Rock musician Chris Baio (Vampire Weekend) is 33. Actress India Eisley is 24.
Thought for Today: “What people say, what people do, and what they say they do are entirely different things.” — Margaret Mead, American anthropologist (1901-1978).