Today’s Highlights in History:
On April 5, 2010, an explosion at the Upper Big Branch mine near Charleston, West Virginia, killed 29 workers. In a televised rescue, 115 Chinese coal miners were freed after spending eight days trapped in a flooded mine, surviving an accident that had killed 38.
On this date:
In 1621, the Mayflower sailed from Plymouth Colony in present-day Massachusetts on a monthlong return trip to England.
In 1792, President George Washington cast his first veto, rejecting a congressional measure for apportioning representatives among the states.
In 1887, in Tuscumbia, Alabama, teacher Anne Sullivan achieved a breakthrough as her 6-year-old deaf-blind pupil, Helen Keller, learned the meaning of the word “water” as spelled out in the Manual Alphabet.
In 1951, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were sentenced to death following their conviction in New York on charges of conspiring to commit espionage for the Soviet Union.
In 1955, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill resigned his office for health reasons. Democrat Richard J. Daley was first elected mayor of Chicago, defeating Republican Robert E. Merriam.
In 1976, reclusive billionaire Howard Hughes died in Houston at age 70.
In 1986, two American servicemen and a Turkish woman were killed in the bombing of a West Berlin discotheque, an incident that prompted a U.S. air raid on Libya more than a week later.
In 1987, Fox Broadcasting Co. made its prime-time TV debut by airing the situation comedy “Married with Children” followed by “The Tracey Ullman Show,” then repeating both premiere episodes two more times in the same evening.
In 1991, former Sen. John Tower, R-Texas, his daughter Marian and 21 other people were killed in a commuter plane crash near Brunswick, Georgia.
In 1997, Allen Ginsberg, the counterculture guru who shattered conventions as poet laureate of the Beat Generation, died in New York City at age 70.
In 2015, Rolling Stone magazine apologized and officially retracted its discredited article about an alleged gang rape at the University of Virginia.
In 2019, inspecting a refurbished section of fencing at the Mexican border in California, President Donald Trump declared that “our country is full,” and that illegal crossings must be stopped.
Ten years ago: Ivory Coast’s strongman leader, Laurent Gbagbo (loh-RAHN’ BAHG’-boh), remained holed up in a bunker inside the presidential residence, defiantly maintaining he’d won an election four months earlier even as troops backing the internationally recognized winner encircled the home. (Gbagbo was arrested six days later.) Texas A&M won its first national women’s basketball championship with a 76-70 victory over Notre Dame.
Five years ago: The leak of millions of records on offshore accounts claimed its first high-profile political casualty as Iceland’s prime minister, Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson, stepped aside. Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed a law allowing religious groups and private businesses to deny services to gay and transgender people. R&B singer-songwriter Leon Haywood, 74, died in Los Angeles. UConn won an unprecedented fourth straight women’s national championship, capping another perfect season by routing Syracuse 82-51.
One year ago: Surgeon General Jerome Adams told CNN that the coming week would be “the hardest and saddest week of most Americans’ lives” because of the increasing toll from the coronavirus; hours later, President Donald Trump took a more optimistic tone, saying, “We’re starting to see light at the end of the tunnel.” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was admitted to a hospital for tests, as he continued to suffer symptoms 10 days after being diagnosed with COVID-19. Federal officials said a tiger at the Bronx Zoo in New York had tested positive for the coronavirus, in what was believed to be the first known infection in an animal in the U.S.; the tiger was believed to have been infected by a zoo employee.
Today’s Birthdays: Movie producer Roger Corman is 95. Former U.S. Secretary of State and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Colin Powell is 84. Country singer Tommy Cash is 81. Actor Michael Moriarty is 80.
Pop singer Allan Clarke (The Hollies) is 79. Writer-director Peter Greenaway is 79. Actor Max Gail is 78. Actor Jane Asher is 75. Singer Agnetha Faltskog (ABBA) is 71. Actor Mitch Pileggi is 69. Singer-songwriter Peter Case is 67. Hip-hop artist/actor Christopher “Kid” Reid is 57. Rock musician Mike McCready (Pearl Jam) is 55. Singer Paula Cole is 53. Actor Krista Allen is 50. Actor Victoria Hamilton is 50. Country singer Pat Green is 49. Rapper-producer Pharrell Williams is 48. Rapper/producer Juicy J is 46. Actor Sterling K. Brown is 45. Country singer-musician Mike Eli (The Eli Young Band) is 40. Actor Hayley Atwell is 39. Actor Lily James is 32.