Today’s Highlight in History:
On July 7, 1865, four people were hanged in Washington, D.C. for conspiring with John Wilkes Booth to assassinate President Abraham Lincoln: Lewis Powell (aka Lewis Payne), David Herold, George Atzerodt and Mary Surratt, the first woman to be executed by the federal government.
On this date:
In 1846, U.S. annexation of California was proclaimed at Monterey (mahn-tuh-RAY’) after the surrender of a Mexican garrison.
In 1898, the United States annexed Hawaii.
In 1937, the Second Sino-Japanese War erupted into full-scale conflict as Imperial Japanese forces attacked the Marco Polo Bridge in Beijing.
In 1941, U.S. forces took up positions in Iceland, Trinidad and British Guiana to forestall any Nazi invasion, even though the United States had not yet entered the Second World War.
In 1948, six female U.S. Navy reservists became the first women to be sworn in to the regular Navy.
In 1954, Elvis Presley made his radio debut at Memphis, Tennessee, radio station WHBQ played his first recording for Sun Records, “That’s All Right.”
In 1963, a Navy jet fighter from Willow Grove Naval Air Station in Pennsylvania crashed into a picnic area, killing seven people; the pilot, who ejected, survived.
In 1976, President Gerald R. Ford and the first lady hosted a White House dinner for Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip. The United States Military Academy at West Point included female cadets for the first time as 119 women joined the Class of 1980.
In 1981, President Ronald Reagan announced he was nominating Arizona Judge Sandra Day O’Connor to become the first female justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.
In 1983, 11-year-old Samantha Smith of Manchester, Maine, left for a visit to the Soviet Union at the personal invitation of Soviet leader Yuri V. Andropov (ahn-DROH’-pawf).
In 2005, terrorist bombings in three Underground stations and a double-decker bus killed 52 victims and four bombers in the worst attack on London since World War II.
In 2009, some 20,000 people gathered inside Staples Center in Los Angeles for a memorial service honoring the late Michael Jackson, who was tearfully described by his 11-year-old daughter, Paris-Michael, as “the best father you could ever imagine.”
Ten years ago: President Barack Obama bypassed the Senate and appointed Dr. Donald Berwick to run Medicare and Medicaid. In Philadelphia, a disabled sightseeing “duck boat” adrift in the Delaware River was struck by a barge and capsized; two Hungarian tourists died. Los Angeles police charged Lonnie Franklin Jr. in the city’s “Grim Sleeper” serial killings. (Franklin, who was sentenced to death for the killings of nine women and a teenage girl, died in prison in March 2020 at the age of 67.)
Five years ago: President Barack Obama met at the White House with the head of Vietnam’s Communist Party, Nguyen Phu Trong, as the U.S. pressed ahead to conclude talks on a groundbreaking Asia-Pacific economic pact. Subway said it had mutually agreed with Jared Fogle to suspend their relationship after the home of the sandwich chain’s longtime pitchman was raided by federal and state investigators. (Fogle later pleaded guilty to one count each of distributing and receiving child porn and traveling to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a child, and was sentenced to more than 15 years in prison.)
One year ago: The Navy announced that Adm. William Moran, the four-star admiral who’d been set to become the Navy’s top officer, would instead retire, a move prompted by what Navy Secretary Richard Spencer described as poor judgment regarding a professional relationship. The U.S. women’s soccer team won its fourth Women’s World Cup title, beating the Netherlands 2-0; Megan Rapinoe converted a tiebreaking penalty kick and Rose Lavelle added a goal. Leaked diplomatic cables published in Britain’s Mail on Sunday newspaper revealed that Britain’s ambassador to the United States had called the Trump administration “dysfunctional” and “inept.”
Today’s Birthdays: Musician-conductor Doc Severinsen is 93. Pulitzer Prize-winning author David McCullough is 87.
Rock star Ringo Starr is 80. Comedian Bill Oddie is 79. Singer-musician Warren Entner (The Grass Roots) is 77. Actor Joe Spano is 74. Pop singer David Hodo (The Village People) is 73. Country singer Linda Williams is 73. Actress Shelley Duvall is 71. Actress Roz Ryan is 69. Actor Billy Campbell is 61. Actor Robert Taylor is 60. Rock musician Mark White (Spin Doctors) is 58. Singer-songwriter Vonda Shepard is 57. Actor-comedian Jim Gaffigan is 54. Rhythm-and-blues musician Ricky Kinchen (Mint Condition) is 54. Actress Amy Carlson is 52. Actress Jorja Fox is 52. Actress Cree Summer is 51. Actress Robin Weigert is 51. Actress Kirsten Vangsness is 48. Actor Troy Garity is 47. Actress Berenice Bejo (BEH’-ruh-nees BAY’-hoh) is 44. Actor Hamish Linklater is 44. Olympic silver and bronze medal figure skater Michelle Kwan is 40. Rapper Cassidy is 38. Country singer Gabbie Nolen is 38. Actor Ross Malinger is 36. Actor-comedian Luke Null (TV: “Saturday Night Live”) is 30. Pop singer Ally Hernandez (Fifth Harmony) (TV: “The X Factor”) is 27. Pop musician Ashton Irwin (5 Seconds to Summer) is 26. Country singer Maddie Marlow (Maddie and Tae) is 25.