Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 27, 1950, the U.N. Security Council passed a resolution calling on member nations to help South Korea repel an invasion from the North.
On this date:
In 1787, English historian Edward Gibbon completed work on his six-volume work, “The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.”
In 1880, author-lecturer Helen Keller, who lived most of her life without sight or hearing, was born in Tuscumbia, Alabama.
In 1942, the FBI announced the arrests of eight Nazi saboteurs put ashore in Florida and Long Island, New York. (All were tried and sentenced to death; six were executed while two were spared for turning themselves in and cooperating with U.S. authorities.)
In 1944, during World War II, American forces liberated the French port of Cherbourg (SHEHR’-boorg) from the Germans.
In 1955, Illinois enacted the nation’s first automobile seat belt law. (The law did not require cars to have seat belts, but that they be made seat belt-ready.)
In 1957, Hurricane Audrey slammed into coastal Louisiana and Texas as a Category 4 storm; the official death toll from the storm was placed at 390, although a variety of state, federal and local sources have estimated the number of fatalities at between 400 and 600.
In 1974, President Richard Nixon opened an official visit to the Soviet Union.
In 1985, the legendary Route 66, which originally stretched from Chicago to Santa Monica, California, passed into history as officials decertified the road.
In 1988, at least 56 people were killed when a commuter train ran into a stationary train at the Gare de Lyon terminal in Paris.
In 1991, Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, the first Black jurist to sit on the nation’s highest court, announced his retirement. (His departure led to the contentious nomination of Clarence Thomas to succeed him.)
In 2005, the Supreme Court ruled, in a pair of 5-4 decisions, that displaying the Ten Commandments on government property was constitutionally permissible in some cases but not in others. BTK serial killer Dennis Rader pleaded guilty to ten murders that had spread fear across Wichita, Kansas, beginning in the 1970s. (Rader later received multiple life sentences.)
In 2006, a constitutional amendment to ban desecration of the American flag died in a Senate cliffhanger, falling one vote short of the 67 needed to send it to states for ratification.
Ten years ago: Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (blah-GOY’-uh-vich) was convicted by a federal jury in Chicago on a wide range of corruption charges, including the allegation that he’d tried to sell or trade President Barack Obama’s U.S. Senate seat. (Blagojevich was later sentenced to 14 years in prison; his sentence was commuted by President Donald Trump in February 2020.) International judges ordered the arrest of Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi for murdering civilians. Venus and Serena Williams were eliminated in the fourth round of Wimbledon, the first time in five years that neither sister advanced to the quarterfinals at the All England Club.
Five years ago: The U.S. Supreme Court issued its strongest defense of abortion rights in a quarter-century, striking down Texas’ widely replicated rules that sharply reduced abortion clinics. The Supreme Court overturned the bribery conviction of former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, sending the case back to a lower court. (Prosecutors ended up deciding not to retry McDonnell.)
One year ago: Florida set another daily record for the state in the number of daily confirmed coronavirus cases, with more than 9,500 new cases. Thousands of people gathered outside a police building in suburban Denver to call for justice in the death of Elijah McClain, a 23-year-old Black man who’d been put in a chokehold by police in August 2019; he suffered cardiac arrest on the way to the hospital and was later declared brain dead. Princeton University said it would remove the name of former President Woodrow Wilson from its public policy school because of his segregationist views. French cosmetics giant L’Oreal said it would remove words like “whitening” from its skin care products following criticism of the company amid global protests against racism.
Today’s Birthdays: Former Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt is 83. Singer-musician Bruce Johnston (The Beach Boys) is 79. Fashion designer Vera Wang is 72. Actor Julia Duffy is 70. Actor Isabelle Adjani is 66. Country singer Lorrie Morgan is 62. Actor Brian Drillinger is 61. Writer-producer-director J.J. Abrams is 55. Former Sen. Kelly Ayotte R-N.H., is 53. Olympic gold and bronze medal figure skater Viktor Petrenko is 52. Latin singer Draco Rosa is 52. Actor Edward “Grapevine” Fordham Jr. is 51. TV personality Jo Frost is 51. Actor Yancey Arias is 50. Actor Christian Kane is 49. Actor Tobey Maguire is 46. Gospel singer Leigh Nash is 45. Christian rock singer Zach Williams is 43. Musician Chris Eldridge (Punch Brothers) is 39. Reality TV star Khloe Kardashian is 37. Actor Drake Bell is 35. Actor Sam Claflin is 35. Actor India de Beaufort is 34. Actor Ed Westwick is 34. Actor Matthew Lewis (Film: “Harry Potter”; TV: “Ripper Street”) is 32. Actor Madylin Sweeten is 30. Pop singer Lauren Jauregui (Fifth Harmony) (TV: “The X Factor”) is 25.
R&B singer H.E.R. is 24. Actor Chandler Riggs is 22.