Today in History
Today is Monday, Jan. 25, the 25th day of 2016. There are 341 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Jan. 25, 1915, America's first official transcontinental telephone call took place as Alexander Graham Bell, who was in New York, spoke to his former assistant, Thomas Watson, who was in San Francisco, over a line set up by American Telephone & Telegraph.
On this date:
In 1533, England's King Henry VIII secretly married his second wife, Anne Boleyn, who later gave birth to Elizabeth I.
In 1890, reporter Nellie Bly (Elizabeth Cochrane) of the New York World completed a round-the-world journey in 72 days, 6 hours and 11 minutes. The United Mine Workers of America was founded in Columbus, Ohio.
In 1915, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Coppage v. Kansas, upheld the right of employers to bar employees from belonging to labor unions by making them sign a "yellow dog contract."
In 1924, the first Winter Olympic Games opened in Chamonix (shah-moh-NEE'), France.
In 1945, the World War II Battle of the Bulge ended as German forces were pushed back to their original positions. Grand Rapids, Michigan, became the first community to add fluoride to its public water supply.
In 1947, American gangster Al Capone died in Miami Beach, Florida, at age 48.
In 1955, the Soviet Union formally ended its state of war with Germany.
In 1961, President John F. Kennedy held the first presidential news conference to be carried live on radio and television.
In 1971, Charles Manson and three women followers were convicted in Los Angeles of murder and conspiracy in the 1969 slayings of seven people, including actress Sharon Tate. Idi Amin seized power in Uganda by ousting President Milton Obote (oh-BOH'-tay) in a military coup.
In 1981, the 52 Americans held hostage by Iran for 444 days arrived in the United States.
In 1990, an Avianca Boeing 707 ran out of fuel and crashed in Cove Neck, Long Island, New York; 73 of the 158 people aboard were killed. Actress Ava Gardner died in London at age 67.
In 1995, the U.S. and Norway launched a Black Brant rocket carrying equipment to study the aurora borealis, startling Russian officials who wondered at first if the rocket was an incoming Trident missile. (Russian President Boris Yeltsin reportedly was given his "nuclear briefcase" for possible retaliation before realizing there was no threat.)
In 2005, A videotape showed Roy Hallums, an American kidnapped in Baghdad the previous November, pleading for his life. (Hallums was rescued by coalition troops on Sept. 7, 2005.) A stampede during a Hindu festival in western India killed some 300 people. Architect Philip Johnson died in New Canaan, Connecticut, at age 98.
Ten years ago: In his first encyclical, "God Is Love," Pope Benedict XVI said the Roman Catholic Church had a duty through its charitable work to influence political leaders to ease suffering and promote justice. Seven children were killed when the car they were in was crushed between a truck and a stopped school bus in Lake Butler, Florida. Richard Hatch of "Survivor" fame was convicted in Providence, Rhode Island, of failing to pay taxes on his $1 million in winnings (he later served more than three years in federal prison).
Five years ago: Pleading for unity in a newly divided government, President Barack Obama used his State of the Union address to implore Democrats and Republicans to rally behind his vision of economic revival, declaring: "We will move forward together or not at all." In Egypt, thousands of anti-government protesters clashed with police during a Tunisia-inspired demonstration to demand the end of President Hosni Mubarak's rule. A federal judge in New York sentenced Ahmed Ghailani (guh-LAHN'-ee), the first Guantanamo detainee to have a U.S. civilian trial, to life in prison for conspiring in the bombing of two U.S. embassies in Africa in 1998.
One year ago: The left-wing Syriza party rode an anti-austerity platform to victory in Greece's parliamentary elections, setting the stage for a showdown with international creditors. Party leader Alexis Tsipras promised to end the "five years of humiliation and pain" that Greece had endured since an international bailout saved it from bankruptcy in 2010. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (shin-zoh ah-bay) offered condolences to the family and friends of Haruna Yukawa, a 42-year-old adventurer taken hostage in Syria, and said a video purporting to show that he had been killed was likely authentic. "Birdman" won best ensemble from the Screen Actors Guild, a day after winning the top honor at the Producer Guild Awards.
Today's Birthdays: Country singer Claude Gray is 84. Movie director Tobe Hooper is 73. Actress Leigh Taylor-Young is 71. Actress Jenifer (cq) Lewis is 59. Actress Dinah Manoff is 58. Country musician Mike Burch (River Road) is 50. Rhythm-and-blues singer Kina is 47. Actress China Kantner is 45. Actress Ana Ortiz is 45. Drummer Joe Sirois (sih-ROYS') of Mighty Mighty Bosstones is 44. Musician Matt Odmark (OHD'-mark) (Jars of Clay) is 42. Actress Mia Kirshner is 41. Actress Christine Lakin is 37. Rhythm-and-blues singer Alicia (ah-LEE'-shuh) Keys is 35. Actor Michael Trevino is 31. Pop musician Calum Hood (5 Seconds to Summer) is 20.
Thought for Today: "A first-rate organizer is never in a hurry. He is never late. He always keeps up his sleeve a margin for the unexpected." — Arnold Bennett, English poet, author and critic (1867-1931).