TODAY IN WORLD HISTORY
Today is Thursday, June 29, the 180th day of 2017. There are 185 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History On June 29, 1767, Britain approved the Townshend Revenue Act, which imposed import duties on glass, paint, oil, lead, paper and tea shipped to the American colonies. (Colonists bitterly protested, prompting Parliament to repeal the duties — except for tea.)
On this date
• In 1613, London’s original Globe Theatre, where many of Shakespeare’s plays were performed, was destroyed by a fire sparked by a cannon shot during a performance of “Henry VIII.”
• In 1880, France annexed Tahiti, which became a French colony on December 30, 1880.
• In 1927, the first trans-Pacific airplane flight was completed as Lt. Lester J. Maitland and Lt. Albert F. Hegenberger arrived at Wheeler Field in Hawaii aboard the Bird of Paradise, an Atlantic-Fokker C-2, after flying 2,400 miles from Oakland, California, in 25 hours, 50 minutes.
• In 1936, entertainer and songwriter George M. Cohan was presented with the Congressional Gold Medal by President Franklin D. Roosevelt for his contributions to building American morale during World War I.
• In 1941, Polish statesman, pianist and composer Ignacy Jan Paderewski died in New York at age 80.
• In 1956, actress Marilyn Monroe married playwright Arthur Miller in a civil ceremony in White Plains, New York. (The couple also wed in a Jewish ceremony on July 1; the marriage lasted 4 1/2 years).
• In 1967, actress Jayne Mansfield, 34, was killed along with her boyfriend, Sam Brody, and their driver, Ronnie Harrison, when their car slammed into the rear of a tractor-trailer on a highway in Slidell, Louisiana; three children riding in the back, including Mansfield’s 3-year-old daughter, Mariska Hargitay, survived. Jerusalem was re-unified as Israel removed barricades separating the Old City from the Israeli sector.
• In 1972, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a trio of death sentences, saying the way they had been imposed constituted cruel and unusual punishment. (The ruling prompted states to effectively impose a moratorium on executions until their capital punishment laws could be revised.)
• In 1988, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Morrison v. Olson, upheld the independent counsel law in a 7-1 decision (the sole dissenter was Justice Antonin Scalia).
• In 1992, the remains of Polish statesman Ignacy Jan Paderewski, interred for five decades in the United States, were returned to his homeland in keeping with his wish to be buried only in a free Poland.
• In 1995, the space shuttle Atlantis and the Russian Mir space station linked in orbit, beginning a historic five-day voyage as a single ship. A department store in Seoul, South Korea, collapsed, killing at least 500 people. Actress Lana Turner died in Century City, California, at age 74.
• In 2003, actress Katharine Hepburn died in Old Saybrook, Connecticut, at age 96.
Ten years ago British police defused two car bombs left to blow up near packed nightclubs and pubs in central London. The first generation of Apple iPhones went on sale. Death claimed movie critic Joel Siegel at age 63 and George McCorkle, a founding member of the Marshall Tucker Band, at age 60.
Five years ago A day after the House voted to find Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress, the Justice Department said Holder’s decision to withhold information about a bungled gun-tracking operation from Congress did not constitute a crime, and that he would not be prosecuted. The younger brother and business partner of disgraced financier Bernard Madoff pleaded guilty to charges of doctoring documents for years, but Peter Madoff insisted he knew nothing about his brother’s massive Ponzi scheme. (Peter Madoff was later sentenced to 10 years in prison.)