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Today in History

Today in History

Today is Wednesday, May 19, the 139th day of 2021. There are 226 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On May 19, 1967, the Soviet Union ratified a treaty with the United States and Britain, banning nuclear and other weapons from outer space as well as celestial bodies such as the moon. (The treaty entered into force in October 1967.)

On this date:

In 1536, Anne Boleyn, the second wife of England’s King Henry VIII, was beheaded after being convicted of adultery.

In 1864, American author Nathaniel Hawthorne, 59, died in Plymouth, New Hampshire.

In 1913, California Gov. Hiram Johnson signed the Webb-Hartley Law prohibiting “aliens ineligible to citizenship” from owning farm land, a measure targeting Asian immigrants, particularly Japanese.

In 1920, ten people were killed in a gun battle between coal miners, who were led by a local police chief, and a group of private security guards hired to evict them for joining a union in Matewan, a small “company town” in West Virginia.

In 1921, Congress passed, and President Warren G. Harding signed, the Emergency Quota Act, which established national quotas for immigrants.

In 1935, T.E. Lawrence, also known as “Lawrence of Arabia,” died in Dorset, England, six days after being injured in a motorcycle crash.

In 1943, in his second wartime address to the U.S. Congress, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill pledged his country’s full support in the fight against Japan; that evening, Churchill met with President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the White House, where the two leaders agreed on May 1, 1944 as the date for the D-Day invasion of France (the operation ended up being launched more than a month later).

In 1981, five British soldiers were killed by an Irish Republican Army land mine in County Armagh (AR’-mah), Northern Ireland.

In 1993, the Clinton White House set off a political storm by abruptly firing the entire staff of its travel office; five of the seven staffers were later reinstated and assigned to other duties.

In 1994, former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis died in New York at age 64.

In 2003, WorldCom Inc. agreed to pay investors $500 million to settle civil fraud charges.

In 2019, “Game of Thrones” aired its 73rd and final episode on HBO, with a record-setting number of viewers.

Ten years ago: President Barack Obama for the first time endorsed the Palestinians’ demand that their eventual state be based on borders that existed before the 1967 Middle East war, a position that put him sharply at odds with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Katie Couric, the first regular solo anchorwoman of a network evening newscast, signed off the “CBS Evening News” for the last time after five years.

Five years ago: An EgyptAir jetliner en route from Paris to Cairo with 66 people aboard swerved wildly in flight before crashing into the Mediterranean Sea, killing all on board. Veteran “60 Minutes” correspondent Morley Safer died in New York at age 84. Actor-comedian Alan Young, who played straight man to a talking horse in the 1960s sitcom “Mister Ed,” died in Woodland Hills, California, at age 96.

One year ago: A Trump administration policy of quickly expelling most migrants stopped along the border because of the COVID-19 pandemic was indefinitely extended. President Donald Trump attacked the validity of a study of veterans that raised alarms about the malaria drug Trump had been actively promoting as a treatment for the coronavirus. Annie Glenn, widow of astronaut and senator John Glenn and later an advocate for people with speech disorders, died at a Minnesota nursing home at the age of 100.

Today’s Birthdays: TV personality David Hartman is 86. Actor James Fox is 82. Actor Nancy Kwan is 82. Rock singer-composer Pete Townshend (The Who) is 76. Concert pianist David Helfgott is 74. Rock singer-musician Dusty Hill (ZZ Top) is 72. College Football Hall of Famer and former NFL player Archie Manning is 72. Singer-actor Grace Jones is 70. Rock musician Phil Rudd is 67. Actor Steven Ford is 65. Actor Toni Lewis is 61. Rock musician Iain Harvie (Del Amitri) is 59. Actor Polly Walker is 55. Actor Jason Gray-Stanford is 51. Gospel singer Israel Houghton is 50. Rock singer Jenny Berggren (Ace of Base) is 49. Former race car driver Dario Franchitti is 48. TV personality Kim Zolciak Biermann (TV: “Real Housewives of Atlanta”) is 43. Country/rock singer Shooter Jennings is 42. Actor Drew Fuller is 41. Actor-comedian Michael Che (chay) (TV: “Saturday Night Live”) is 38. Christian rock musician Tim McTague (Underoath) is 38. Actor Eric Lloyd is 35. Pop singer Sam Smith is 29. Actor Nolan Lyons is 20.

By The Associated Press

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