TODAY IN HISTORY
Today is Sunday, Dec. 29, the 363rd day of 2019. There are two days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Dec. 29, 1845, Texas was admitted as the 28th state. On this date: In 1170, Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury, was slain in Canterbury Cathedral by knights loyal to King Henry II.
In 1812, during the War of 1812, the American frigate USS Constitution engaged and severely damaged the British frigate HMS Java off Brazil.
In 1890, the Wounded Knee massacre took place in South Dakota as an estimated 300 Sioux Indians were killed by U.S. troops sent to disarm them.
In 1939, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” starring Charles Laughton and Maureen O’Hara, was released by RKO Radio Pictures.
In 1940, during World War II, Germany dropped incendiary bombs on London, setting off what came to be known as “The Second Great Fire of London.”
In 1972, Eastern Air Lines Flight 401, a Lockheed L-1011 Tristar, crashed into the Florida Everglades near Miami International Airport, killing 101 of the 176 people aboard.
In 1975, a bomb exploded in the main terminal of New York’s LaGuardia Airport, killing 11 people (it’s never been determined who was responsible).
In 1978, during the Gator Bowl, Ohio State University coach Woody Hayes punched Clemson player Charlie Bauman, who’d intercepted an Ohio State pass. (Hayes was fired by Ohio State the next day.)
In 1986, former British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan died in Sussex, England, at age 92.
In 1989, dissident and playwright Vaclav Havel (VAHTS’-lahv HAH’-vel) assumed the presidency of Czechoslovakia.
In 1992, the United States and Russia announced agreement on a nuclear arms reduction treaty.
In 2006, word reached the United States of the execution of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein (because of the time difference, it was the morning of Dec. 30 in Iraq when the hanging took place). In a statement, President George W. Bush called Saddam’s execution an important milestone on Iraq’s road to democracy.