Today in History, Monday, Oct. 16, 2017


Today is Monday, Oct. 16, the 289th day of 2017. There are 76 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Oct. 16, 1987, a 58-1/2-hour drama in Midland, Texas, ended happily as rescuers freed Jessica McClure, an 18-month-old girl trapped in a narrow, abandoned well.

On this date:

In 456, Magister militum Ricimer defeats Emperor Avitus at Piacenza and becomes master of the Western Roman Empire.

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In 690, Empress Wu Zetian ascends to the throne of the Tang dynasty and proclaims herself ruler of the Chinese Empire.

In 1793, during the French Revolution, Marie Antoinette, the queen of France, was beheaded.

In 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacks Napoleon Bonaparte in the Battle of Leipzig.

In 1834, much of the ancient structure of the Palace of Westminster in London burns to the ground.

In 1847, the novel Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë is published in London.

In 1869, the Cardiff Giant, one of the most famous American hoaxes, is “discovered”.

In 1934, Chinese Communists, under siege by the Nationalists, began their “long march” lasting a year from southeastern to northwestern China.

In 1946, ten Nazi war criminals condemned during the Nuremberg trials were hanged.

In 1950, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis is published, starting The Chronicles of Narnia series.

In 1957, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip began a visit to the United States with a stopover at the site of the Jamestown settlement in Virginia.

In 1968, American athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos sparked controversy at the Mexico City Olympics by giving “black power” salutes during a victory ceremony after they’d won gold and bronze medals in the 200-meter race.

In 1978, the College of Cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church chose Cardinal Karol Wojtyla to be the new pope; he took the name John Paul II.

In 1984, Desmond Tutu is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

In 1991, a deadly shooting rampage took place in Killeen, Texas, as a gunman opened fire at a Luby’s Cafeteria, killing 23 people before taking his own life.

In 1998, former Chilean dictator General Augusto Pinochet is arrested in London on a warrant from Spain requesting his extradition on murder charges

Today’s Birthdays:

Actress Angela Lansbury is 92. Actor Peter Bowles is 81. Actor-producer Tony Anthony is 80. Rock musician C.F. Turner (Bachman-Turner Overdrive) is 74. Actress Suzanne Somers is 71. Rock singer-musician Bob Weir is 70. Producer-director David Zucker is 70. Actor-director Tim Robbins is 59. Actor-musician Gary Kemp is 58. Rock musician Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) is 55. Singer Wendy Wilson (Wilson Phillips) is 48. Rapper B-Rock (B-Rock and the Bizz) is 46. Rock singer Chad Gray (Mudvayne) is 46. Actor Paul Sparks is 46. Actress Kellie Martin is 42. Singer John Mayer is 40. Actor Jeremy Jackson is 37. Actress Caterina Scorsone is 37. Actress Brea Grant is 36. Australian motorcycle racer Casey Stoner is 32.

Thought for Today:

“What is time? The shadow on the dial, the striking of the clock, the running of the sand, day and night, summer and winter, months, years, centuries — these are but arbitrary and outward signs, the measure of Time, not Time itself. Time is the Life of the soul.” — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American poet (1807-1882).