Today in history


By the Associated Press



Today is Saturday, Jan. 18, the 18th day of 2020. There are 348 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Jan. 18, 1993, the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday was observed in all 50 states for the first time.

On this date:

In 1778, English navigator Captain James Cook reached the present-day Hawaiian Islands, which he named the “Sandwich Islands.”

In 1911, the first landing of an aircraft on a ship took place as pilot Eugene B. Ely brought his Curtiss biplane in for a safe landing on the deck of the armored cruiser USS Pennsylvania in San Francisco Harbor.

In 1919, the Paris Peace Conference, held to negotiate peace treaties ending the First World War, opened in Versailles, France.

In 1936, Nobel Prize-winning author Rudyard Kipling, 70, died in London.

In 1943, during World War II, Jewish insurgents in the Warsaw Ghetto launched their initial armed resistance against Nazi troops, who eventually succeeded in crushing the rebellion. The Soviets announced they’d broken through the long Nazi siege of Leningrad (it was another year before the siege was fully lifted). A U.S. ban on the sale of pre-sliced bread — aimed at reducing bakeries’ demand for metal replacement parts — went into effect.

In 1949, Charles Ponzi, engineer of one of the most spectacular mass swindles in history, died destitute at a hospital in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, at age 66.

In 1957, a trio of B-52’s completed the first non-stop, round-the-world flight by jet planes, landing at March Air Force Base in California after more than 45 hours aloft.

In 1967, Albert DeSalvo, who claimed to be the “Boston Strangler,” was convicted of armed robbery, assault and sex offenses. (Sentenced to life, DeSalvo was killed in prison in 1973.)

In 1990, Washington D.C. Mayor Marion Barry was arrested in an FBI sting on drug-possession charges (he was later convicted of a misdemeanor).

In 1991, financially strapped Eastern Airlines shut down after more than six decades in business.

In 1996, Lisa Marie Presley-Jackson filed for divorce from Michael Jackson.

In 2005, the world’s largest commercial jet, the Airbus A380 “superjumbo” capable of flying up to 800 passengers, was unveiled in Toulouse, France.

Today’s Birthdays: Movie director John Boorman is 87. Former Sen. Paul Kirk, D-Mass., is 82. Singer-songwriter Bobby Goldsboro is 79. Comedian-singer-musician Brett Hudson is 67. Actor-director Kevin Costner is 65. Country singer-actor Mark Collie is 64. Actor Mark Rylance is 60. Actress Alison Arngrim (TV: “Little House on the Prairie”) is 58. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley is 57. Actress Jane Horrocks is 56. Comedian Dave Attell is 55. Actor Jesse L. Martin is 51. Rapper DJ Quik is 50. Rock singer Jonathan Davis (Korn) is 49. Former NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous is 47. Singer Christian Burns (BBMak) is 46. Actor Derek Richardson is 44. Actor Jason Segel is 40. Actress Samantha Mumba is 37. Country singer Kristy Lee Cook (TV: “American Idol”) is 36. Actress Devin Kelley is 34. Actress Ashleigh Murray (TV: “Riverdale”) is 32. Actor Zeeko Zaki is 30. Tennis player Angelique Kerber is 32. Actor Mateus Ward is 21.

Thought for Today: “None can love freedom heartily, but good men; the rest love not freedom, but license.” — John Milton, English poet (1608-1674).

By the Associated Press