Today in History

Published 12:01 am Friday, April 6, 2018

Today is Friday, April 6, the 96th day of 2018. There are 269 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On April 6, 1968, 41 people were killed by two consecutive natural gas explosions at a sporting goods store in downtown Richmond, Indiana.

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On this date:

In 1830, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was organized by Joseph Smith in Fayette, New York.

In 1862, the Civil War Battle of Shiloh began in Tennessee as Confederate forces launched a surprise attack against Union troops, who beat back the Confederates the next day.

In 1896, the first modern Olympic games formally opened in Athens, Greece.

In 1909, American explorers Robert E. Peary and Matthew A. Henson and four Inuits became the first men to reach the North Pole.

In 1917, the United States entered World War I as the House joined the Senate in approving a declaration of war against Germany that was then signed by President Woodrow Wilson.

In 1943, “Le Petit Prince” (The Little Prince) by Antoine de Saint-Exupery was first published by Reynal & Hitchcock of New York.

In 1954, Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy, R-Wis., responding to CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow’s broadside against him on “See It Now,” said in remarks filmed for the program that Murrow had, in the past, “engaged in propaganda for Communist causes.”

In 1965, the United States launched Intelsat I, also known as the “Early Bird” communications satellite, into geosynchronous orbit.

In 1971, Russian-born composer Igor Stravinsky, 88, died in New York City.

In 1988, Tirza Porat, a 15-year-old Israeli girl, was killed in a West Bank melee. (Although Arabs were initially blamed, the army concluded Tirza had been accidentally shot by a Jewish settler.)

In 1998, the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 9,000 points for the first time, ending the day at 9,033.23. Country singer Tammy Wynette died at her Nashville home at age 55.

In 2014, actor Mickey Rooney, 93, died in North Hollywood.

Ten years ago: Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, speaking at a private fundraiser in San Francisco, spoke of voters in Pennsylvania’s Rust Belt communities who “cling to guns or religion” because of bitterness about their economic lot; Democratic rival Hillary Rodham Clinton seized on the comment, calling it “elitist.” President George W. Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin, meeting at the Black Sea resort of Sochi, failed to overcome sharp differences over a U.S. missile defense system as they closed their seven-year relationship.

Five years ago: Iran and six world powers failed to reach agreement during talks in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on how to reduce fears that Tehran might use its nuclear technology to make weapons. Militants killed six Americans, including diplomat Anne Smedinghoff, 25, and an Afghan doctor in a pair of attacks in Afghanistan, the deadliest day for the United States in the war in eight months.

One year ago: President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping (shee jihn-peeng) opened a two-day summit at Trump’s Florida beach resort. The National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri, hosted a centennial observance of the day the U.S. entered the global conflict. Don Rickles, the big-mouthed, bald-headed “Mr. Warmth” whose verbal assaults endeared him to audiences and peers and made him the acknowledged grandmaster of insult comedy, died at his Beverly Hills home at age 90.

Today’s Birthdays: Nobel Prize-winning scientist James D. Watson is 90. Composer-conductor Andre Previn is 89. Actor Billy Dee Williams is 81. Actor Roy Thinnes is 80. Movie director Barry Levinson is 76. Actor John Ratzenberger is 71. Actress Patrika Darbo is 70. Baseball Hall of Famer Bert Blyleven is 67. Actress Marilu Henner is 66. Olympic bronze medal figure skater Janet Lynn is 65. Actor Michael Rooker is 63. Former U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., is 62. Rock musician Warren Haynes is 58. Rock singer-musician Frank Black is 53. Actress Ari Meyers is 49. Actor Paul Rudd is 49. Actor-producer Jason Hervey is 46. Rock musician Markku Lappalainen (mar-KOO’ lap-uh-LAN’-en) is 45. Actor Zach Braff is 43. Actor Joel Garland is 43. Actress Candace Cameron Bure (buhr-RAY’) is 42. Actor Teddy Sears is 41. Jazz and rhythm-and-blues musician Robert Glasper is 40. Actress Eliza Coupe is 37. Folk singer-musician Kenneth Pattengale (Milk Carton Kids) is 36. Actor Bret Harrison is 36. Actor Charlie McDermott is 28.