Today in History
Today is Monday, June 19, the 170th day of 2023. There are 195 days left in the year. This is Juneteenth.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 19, 1964, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was approved by the U.S. Senate, 73-27, after surviving a lengthy filibuster.
On this date:
In 1775, George Washington was commissioned by the Continental Congress as commander in chief of the Continental Army.
In 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, with news that the Civil War was over, and that all remaining slaves in Texas were free — an event celebrated to this day as “Juneteenth.”
In 1910, the first-ever Father’s Day was celebrated in Spokane, Washington. (The idea for the observance is credited to Sonora Louise Smart Dodd.)
In 1911, Pennsylvania became the first state to establish a motion picture censorship board.
In 1917, during World War I, King George V ordered the British royal family to dispense with German titles and surnames; the family took the name “Windsor.”
In 1934, the Federal Communications Commission was created; it replaced the Federal Radio Commission.
In 1944, during World War II, the two-day Battle of the Philippine Sea began, resulting in a decisive victory for the Americans over the Japanese.
In 1953, Julius Rosenberg, 35, and his wife, Ethel, 37, convicted of conspiring to pass U.S. atomic secrets to the Soviet Union, were executed at Sing Sing Prison in Ossining, New York.
In 1975, former Chicago organized crime boss Sam Giancana was shot to death in the basement of his home in Oak Park, Illinois; the killing has never been solved.
In 1986, University of Maryland basketball star Len Bias, the first draft pick of the Boston Celtics, suffered a fatal cocaine-induced seizure.
In 1987, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Louisiana law requiring any public school teaching the theory of evolution to teach creation science as well.
In 2014, Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California won election as House majority leader as Republicans shuffled their leadership in the wake of Rep. Eric Cantor’s primary defeat in Virginia.
Ten years ago: Afghan President Hamid Karzai (HAH’-mihd KAHR’-zeye) suspended talks with the United States on a new security deal to protest the way his government was left out of initial peace negotiations with the Taliban. President Barack Obama, speaking in front of Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate, pledged to cut deployed U.S. nuclear weapons by one-third if Cold War foe Russia did the same. Actor James Gandolfini, 51, died while vacationing in Rome. Country singer Slim Whitman, 90, died in Orange Park, Florida.
Five years ago: The United States said it was pulling out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council, a day after the U.N. human rights chief denounced the Trump administration for separating migrant children from their parents; U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley cited longstanding U.S. complaints that the council was biased against Israel. Koko, a western lowland gorilla who was taught sign language at an early age as a scientific test subject and eventually learned more than 1,000 words, died at the Gorilla Foundation’s preserve in California’s Santa Cruz mountains at the age of 46. New York mayor Bill de Blasio said as of Sept. 1, police would start issuing summonses to people caught smoking marijuana in public rather than arresting them.
One year ago: The head of NATO warned that fighting between Russia and Ukraine could drag on “for years.” British defense officials assessing the intense fighting in the Donbas region of Ukraine bordering Russia said morale among troops on both sides was growing troubled. Witnesses in Ethiopia said more than 200 ethnic Amhara were killed in an attack in the country’s Oromia region and blamed a rebel group, which denied it. George Lamming, a novelist and essayist who was among the giants of post-colonial Caribbean writing, died at age 94.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor Gena (JEH’-nuh) Rowlands is 93. Hall of Fame race car driver Shirley Muldowney is 83. Singer Elaine “Spanky” McFarlane (Spanky and Our Gang) is 81. Nobel peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi (soo chee) is 78. Author Sir Salman Rushdie is 76. Actor Phylicia Rashad is 75. Rock singer Ann Wilson (Heart) is 73. Musician Larry Dunn is 70. Actor Kathleen Turner is 69. Country singer Doug Stone is 67. Singer Mark “Marty” DeBarge is 64. Singer-dancer-choreographer Paula Abdul is 61. Actor Andy Lauer is 60. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is 59. Rock singer-musician Brian Vander Ark (Verve Pipe) is 59. Actor Samuel West is 57. Actor Mia Sara is 56. TV personality Lara Spencer is 54. Rock musician Brian “Head” Welch (Korn) is 53. Actor Jean Dujardin is 51. Actor Robin Tunney is 51. Actor Bumper Robinson is 49. Actor Poppy Montgomery is 48. Alt-country singer-musician Scott Avett (The Avett Brothers) is 47. Actor Ryan Hurst is 47. Actor Zoe Saldana is 45. Former NBA star Dirk Nowitzki is 45. Actor Neil Brown Jr. is 43. Actor Lauren Lee Smith is 43. Rapper Macklemore (Macklemore and Ryan Lewis) is 41. Actor Paul Dano is 39. Texas Rangers pitcher Jacob DeGrom is 35. Actor Giacomo Gianniotti is 34. Actor Chuku Modu (TV: “The Good Doctor”) is 33. Actor Atticus Shaffer is 25.
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