Today is Saturday, April 6, the 96th day of 2019. There are 269 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On April 6, 1830, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was organized by Joseph Smith in Fayette, New York.
On this date:
In 1862, the Civil War Battle of Shiloh began in Tennessee as Confederate forces launched a surprise attack against Union troops, who beat back the Confederates the next day.
In 1896, the first modern Olympic games formally opened in Athens, Greece.
In 1909, American explorers Robert E. Peary and Matthew A. Henson and four Inuits became the first men to reach the North Pole.
In 1917, the United States entered World War I as the House joined the Senate in approving a declaration of war against Germany that was then signed by President Woodrow Wilson.
In 1945, during World War II, the Japanese warship Yamato and nine other vessels sailed on a suicide mission to attack the U.S. fleet off Okinawa; the fleet was intercepted the next day.
In 1954, Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy, R-Wis., responding to CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow’s broadside against him on “See It Now,” said in remarks filmed for the program that Murrow had, in the past, “engaged in propaganda for Communist causes.”
In 1965, the United States launched Intelsat I, also known as the “Early Bird” communications satellite, into geosynchronous orbit.
In 1968, 41 people were killed by two consecutive natural gas explosions at a sporting goods store in downtown Richmond, Indiana.
In 1971, Russian-born composer Igor Stravinsky, 88, died in New York City.
In 1973, Ron Blomberg of the New York Yankees became Major League Baseball’s first designated hitter as he faced pitcher Luis Tiant of the Boston Red Sox at Fenway. (Blomberg was walked with the bases loaded; Boston won the game, 15-5.)
In 1994, Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun announced his retirement after 24 years.
In 1998, the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 9,000 points for the first time, ending the day at 9,033.23. Country singer Tammy Wynette died at her Nashville home at age 55.
Ten years ago: An earthquake in central Italy killed some 300 people in the country’s deadliest quake in nearly three decades. President Barack Obama paid tribute to the memory of modern Turkey’s founding father, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, during a visit to Ankara; delivering a speech to the Turkish Parliament, Obama declared the U.S. “is not and never will be at war with Islam.” Michael Jordan, along with former Dream Team teammates David Robinson and John Stockton, were elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame; Utah Jazz coach Jerry Sloan and Rutgers women’s coach C. Vivian Stringer were also part of a class. North Carolina won the NCAA championship, ending Michigan State’s inspirational run with a 89-72 rout.
Five years ago: Legendary Hollywood actor Mickey Rooney, 93, died in North Hollywood. U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel delivered a two-pronged warning to Asia Pacific nations, announcing in Tokyo that the U.S. would send two additional ballistic missile destroyers to Japan to counter the North Korean threat, and saying China had better respect its neighbors.
One year ago: Texas Republican congressman Blake Farenthold abruptly resigned, four months after announcing he wouldn’t seek re-election amid sexual harassment allegations. Thousands of Palestinians protested along Gaza’s sealed border with Israel; Israeli troops opened fire from across the border, and Gaza health officials said at least nine Palestinians were killed. Former Democratic Sen. Daniel Akaka of Hawaii died in Honolulu at the age of 93. Federal law enforcement authorities seized online classified site Backpage.com and its affiliated websites known for listing adult escort services. A South Korean court sentenced former President Park Geun-hye to 24 years in prison on charges including bribery and extortion stemming from a corruption scandal that removed her from office a year earlier. A transport truck collided with a bus carrying a junior hockey team in western Canada, killing 16 people on the bus.
Today’s Birthdays: Nobel Prize-winning scientist James D. Watson is 91. Actor Billy Dee Williams is 82. Actor Roy Thinnes is 81. Movie director Barry Levinson is 77. Actor John Ratzenberger is 72. Actress Patrika Darbo is 71. Baseball Hall of Famer Bert Blyleven is 68. Actress Marilu Henner is 67. Olympic bronze medal figure skater Janet Lynn is 66. Actor Michael Rooker is 64. Former U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., is 63. Rock musician Warren Haynes is 59. Rock singer-musician Frank Black is 54. Actress Ari Meyers is 50. Actor Paul Rudd is 50. Actor-producer Jason Hervey is 47. Rock musician Markku Lappalainen (mar-KOO’ lap-uh-LAN’-en) is 46. Actor Zach Braff is 44. Actor Joel Garland is 44. Actress Candace Cameron Bure (buhr-RAY’) is 43. Actor Teddy Sears is 42. Jazz and rhythm-and-blues musician Robert Glasper is 41. Actress Eliza Coupe is 38. Folk singer-musician Kenneth Pattengale (Milk Carton Kids) is 37. Actor Bret Harrison is 37. Actor Charlie McDermott is 29.
Thought for Today: “History is the ship carrying living memories to the future.” — Sir Stephen Spender, British poet and critic (1909-1995).