Today in History

AP News
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Posted: Oct 10, 2010 12:00 AM
Today in History

Today is Sunday, Oct. 10, the 283rd day of 2010. There are 82 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On Oct. 10, 1935, the George Gershwin opera "Porgy and Bess," featuring an all-black cast, opened on Broadway; it ran for 124 performances. (The libretto was by DuBose Heyward, who co-wrote the lyrics with Ira Gershwin.)

On this date:

In 1813, composer Giuseppe Verdi was born in Le Roncole, Italy.

In 1845, the U.S. Naval Academy was established in Annapolis, Md.

In 1913, the Panama Canal was effectively completed as President Woodrow Wilson sent a signal from the White House by telegraph, setting off explosives that destroyed a section of the Gamboa dike.

In 1938, Nazi Germany completed its annexation of Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland (soo-DAYT'-uhn-land).

In 1943, Chiang Kai-shek took the oath of office as president of China.

In 1967, the Outer Space Treaty, prohibiting the placing of weapons of mass destruction on the moon or elsewhere in space, entered into force.

In 1970, Quebec Labor Minister Pierre Laporte was kidnapped by the Quebec Liberation Front, a militant separatist group. (Laporte's body was found a week later.) Fiji became independent after nearly a century of British rule.

In 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew, accused of accepting bribes, pleaded no contest to one count of federal income tax evasion, and resigned his office.

In 1980, some 5,000 people died when a pair of earthquakes struck northwestern Algeria. Former child actor Billie Thomas, who'd played "Buckwheat" in the "Our Gang" comedies, died in Los Angeles at age 49.

In 1985, U.S. fighter jets forced an Egyptian plane carrying the hijackers of the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro (ah-KEE'-leh LOW'-roh) to land in Italy, where the gunmen were taken into custody. Actor-director Orson Welles died in Los Angeles at age 70; actor Yul Brynner died in New York at age 65.

Ten years ago: Americans Alan J. Heeger, Alan G. MacDiarmid and Japan's Hideki Shirakawa won the Nobel Prize in chemistry; Russian Zhores I. Alferov and U.S.-based researchers Herbert Kroemer and Jack Kilby won the Nobel Prize in physics. Jo Myong Rok, a high-ranking North Korean official, met with President Bill Clinton at the White House.

Five years ago: Angela Merkel struck a power-sharing deal that made her the first woman and politician from the ex-communist east to serve as Germany's chancellor. President George W. Bush dined in the French Quarter and stayed in a luxury hotel to showcase progress in hurricane-battered New Orleans. Israeli-American Robert J. Aumann and Thomas C. Schelling of the U.S. won the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences. Milton Obote (oh-BOH'-tay), Uganda's first prime minister, died in Johannesburg, South Africa, at age 80.

One year ago: Turkey and Armenia signed a landmark agreement to establish diplomatic relations and open their sealed border after a century of enmity. President Barack Obama, addressing the Human Rights Campaign, restated his campaign pledge to allow homosexual men and women to serve openly in the military. Stephen Gately, 33, a singer with the Irish boy band Boyzone, died of fluid in the lungs while vacationing on the Spanish island of Mallorca (mah-YOHR'-kah).

Today's Birthdays: Former Illinois Sen. Adlai Stevenson III is 80. Actor Peter Coyote is 69. Entertainer Ben Vereen is 64. Singer John Prine is 64. Actor Charles Dance is 64. Rock singer-musician Cyril Neville (The Neville Brothers) is 62. Actress Jessica Harper is 61. Author Nora Roberts (aka "J.D. Robb") is 60. Singer-musician Midge Ure is 57. Rock singer David Lee Roth is 56. Country singer Tanya Tucker is 52. Actress Julia Sweeney is 51. Actor Bradley Whitford is 51. Musician Martin Kemp is 49. Rock musician Jim Glennie (James) is 47. Actress Rebecca Pidgeon is 45. Rock musician Mike Malinin (Goo Goo Dolls) is 43. NFL quarterback Brett Favre is 41. Actress Wendi McLendon-Covey is 41. Actor Mario Lopez is 37. Actress Jodi Lyn O'Keefe is 32. Singer Mya is 31. Singer Cherie is 26. Actress Aimee Teegarden is 21.

Thought for Today: "The opposite of a fact is falsehood, but the opposite of one profound truth may very well be another profound truth." _ Niels Bohr, Danish physicist (1885-1962).

(Above Advance for Use Sunday, Oct. 10)

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