Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Friday, June 12, the 163rd day of 2015. There are 202 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On June 12, 1965, the British government announced that The Beatles would each be made an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) by Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace later in the year; the selection sparked criticism, with some MBEs returning their medals in protest.

On this date:

In 1776, Virginia’s colonial legislature became the first to adopt a Bill of Rights.

In 1920, the Republican national convention, meeting in Chicago, nominated Warren G. Harding for president on the tenth ballot; Calvin Coolidge was nominated for vice president.

In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge was nominated for a term of office in his own right at the Republican national convention in Cleveland. (Coolidge had become president in 1923 upon the sudden death of Warren G. Harding.)

In 1939, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum was dedicated in Cooperstown, New York.

In 1942, Anne Frank, a German-born Jewish girl living in Amsterdam, received a diary for her 13th birthday, less than a month before she and her family went into hiding from the Nazis.

In 1956, the Flag of the United States Army was officially adopted under an executive order signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

In 1963, civil rights leader Medgar Evers, 37, was shot and killed outside his home in Jackson, Mississippi. (In 1994, Byron De La Beckwith was convicted of murdering Evers and sentenced to life in prison; he died in 2001.) One of Hollywood’s most notoriously expensive productions, “Cleopatra,” starring Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton and Rex Harrison, opened in New York.

In 1964, South African black nationalist Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life in prison along with seven other people, including Walter Sisulu, for committing sabotage against the apartheid regime (all were eventually released, Mandela in 1990).

In 1967, the Supreme Court, in Loving v. Virginia, struck down state laws prohibiting interracial marriages.

In 1975, an Indian court found Prime Minister Indira Gandhi guilty of electoral corruption and barred her from holding office for six years; Gandhi rejected calls for her to resign.

In 1987, President Ronald Reagan, during a visit to the divided German city of Berlin, publicly challenged Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev to “tear down this wall.”

In 1994, Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman were slashed to death outside her Los Angeles home. (O.J. Simpson was later acquitted of the killings in a criminal trial, but was eventually held liable in a civil action.) Boeing’s new 777 jetliner went on its first test flight.

Ten years ago: Vice President Dick Cheney, reacting to a growing chorus of calls to close the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, told Fox News Channel there were no plans to do so. American-educated professor and women’s rights activist Massouma al-Mubarak was named Kuwait’s first female Cabinet minister. At the LPGA Championship, Annika Sorenstam closed with a 1-over 73 for a three-shot victory over Michelle Wie, who shot a 69 to finish second.

Five years ago: A French fishing vessel rescued 16-year-old Abby Sunderland from her crippled sailboat in the turbulent southern Indian Ocean, ending the California teen’s attempt to sail around the world solo. Ethnic riots wracked southern Kyrgyzstan, forcing thousands of Uzbeks to flee as their homes. Daniel Nava hit the first pitch he saw as a big leaguer for a grand slam — only the second player to do it — leading the Boston Red Sox to a 10-2 rout of the Philadelphia Phillies.

One year ago: During a tightly controlled tour of a converted warehouse at Port Hueneme, California, a government official said the number of migrant children housed at the facility after they were caught entering the country illegally could more than triple to 575 by the following week. The World Cup opened in Brazil with the home team beating Croatia, 3-1, after a funky opening ceremony featuring Jennifer Lopez and dancers dressed as trees.

Today’s Birthdays: Banker/philanthropist David Rockefeller is 100. Former President George H.W. Bush is 91. Singer Vic Damone is 87. Songwriter Richard M. Sherman is 87. Actor-singer Jim Nabors is 85. Jazz musician Chick Corea is 74. Sportscaster Marv Albert is 74. Singer Roy Harper is 74. Pop singer Len Barry is 73. Actor Roger Aaron Brown is 66. Rock singer-musician John Wetton (Asia, King Crimson) is 66. Rock musician Bun E. Carlos (Cheap Trick) is 64. Country singer-musician Junior Brown is 63. Singer-songwriter Rocky Burnette is 62. Actor Timothy Busfield is 58. Singer Meredith Brooks is 57. Actress Jenilee Harrison is 57. Rock musician John Linnell (They Might Be Giants) is 56. Rapper Grandmaster Dee (Whodini) is 53. Actor Paul Schulze is 53. Actress Paula Marshall is 51. Actress Frances O’Connor is 48. Actor Rick Hoffman is 45. Actor Jason Mewes is 41. Actor Michael Muhney is 40. Blues musician Kenny Wayne Shepherd is 38. Actor Wil Horneff is 36. Singer Robyn is 36. Actor Dave Franco is 30. Actor Luke Youngblood is 29. Country singer Chris Young is 30. Rap group MC Jay Are is 26. Actor Ryan Malgarini is 23.

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