Thursday, June 26, 2008



This Day in History, June 26
On June 26th, 1819, the bicycle was patented.

Notable Birthdays for June 26
Those born on this date include:
- baseball pioneer Abner Doubleday in 1819
- British physicist and inventor William Kelvin in 1824
- Novelist Pearl Buck in 1892
- German aircraft designer Willi Messerschmitt in 1898
- William Lear, developer of the Lear jet, in 1902
- Actor Peter Lorre in 1904
- "Colonel" Tom Parker, Elvis Presley's manager, in 1910
- Athlete Mildred "Babe" Didrikson Zaharias in 1914
- Actor/musician Chris Isaak in 1956 (age 50)
- Cyclist Greg LeMond in 1961 (age 45)
- And actors Chris O'Donnell and Sean P. Hayes ("Will & Grace"), both in 1970 (age 36).

Other Notable Events, June 26
In 1900, Dr. Walter Reed and his medical team began a successful campaign to wipe out yellow fever in the Panama Canal Zone.

In 1917, the first troops of the American Expeditionary Force reached France in World War I.

In 1939, film censors approved "Gone With The Wind" but fined Producer David O. Selznick $5,000 for objectionable language in Rhett Butler's famous line to Scarlett O'Hara: "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn."

In 1945, the FCC began development of commercial television by allocating airwaves for 13 TV stations.

Also in 1945, the U.N. Charter was signed by representatives of 50 nations.

In 1959, U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower and Queen Elizabeth II formally opened the St. Lawrence Seaway in Canada.

In 1974, the bar code, allowing for the electronic scanning of prices, was used for the first time on a pack of gum at a supermarket in Troy, Ohio.

In 1976, the CN Tower, the world's tallest freestanding structure (1,815 feet, 5 inches), opened in Toronto.

In 1977, 42 people died in a county jail fire in Columbia, Tenn.

In 1986, a nationwide 26-day strike by 155,000 AT&T telecommunication workers, the first since the Bell System breakup in January 1984, ended with a new contract agreement.

Also in 1986, the Nicaraguan government closed the nation's last opposition newspaper, La Prensa.

In 1990, U.S. President George H.W. Bush discarded his "no new taxes" campaign pledge, saying "it is clear to me" taxes are needed as part of deficit-reduction package.

In 1991, 120 people drowned after an Indonesian trawler and an unidentified ship collided in the Straits of Malacca.

In 1992, U.S. Navy Secretary H. Lawrence Garrett resigned, accepting responsibility for the "Tailhook" incident involving the harassment of Navy women by naval aviators.

Also in 1992, Los Angeles Police Chief Daryl Gates, the target of public wrath for the Rodney King beating, resigned.

In 1993, in response to an Iraqi plot to assassinate former U.S. President George H.W. Bush during a visit to Kuwait, two U.S. ships in the Persian Gulf fired missiles at Iraq's intelligence complex. The main headquarters building was badly damaged.

In 1995, an attempted assassination of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak failed during his visit to Ethiopia.

In 2000, two rival groups of scientists announced they had deciphered the genetic code, the human genome.

In 2002, the U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled that the Pledge of Allegiance recited in schools was unconstitutional because of the phrase "under God." The ruling was stayed pending appeal.

In 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court gave a major boost to gay rights advocates by striking down a Texas law forbidding sexual activity between same-sex partners.

In 2004, a group that beheaded two hostages in Iraq said it had captured three Turkish workers and would kill them unless Turkish companies quit Iraq.

In 2005, six months after the Indian Ocean tsunami, the death toll stood at 178,000 in 11 countries with another 50,000 people missing and presumed dead.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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