TODAY IN HISTORY


Today is Wednesday, May 5, the 125th day of 2021. There are 240 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On May 5, 1925, schoolteacher John T. Scopes was charged in Tennessee with violating a state law that prohibited teaching the theory of evolution. (Scopes was found guilty, but his conviction was later set aside.)

On this date:

In 1494, during his second voyage to the Western Hemisphere, Christopher Columbus landed in Jamaica.

In 1818, political philosopher Karl Marx, co-author of “The Communist Manifesto” and author of “Das Kapital,” was born in Prussia.

In 1891, New York’s Carnegie Hall (then named “Music Hall”) had its official opening night, featuring Russian composer Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky as a guest conductor.

In 1942, wartime sugar rationing began in the United States.

In 1945, in the only fatal attack of its kind during World War II, a Japanese balloon bomb exploded on Gearhart Mountain in Oregon, killing the pregnant wife of a minister and five children. Denmark and the Netherlands were liberated as a German surrender went into effect.

In 1961, astronaut Alan B. Shepard Jr. became America’s first space traveler as he made a 15-minute suborbital flight aboard Mercury capsule Freedom 7.

In 1973, Secretariat won the Kentucky Derby, the first of his Triple Crown victories.

In 1978, Ben & Jerry’s ice cream had its beginnings as Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield opened an ice cream parlor at a converted gas station in Burlington, Vermont.

In 1987, the congressional Iran-Contra hearings opened with former Air Force Maj. Gen. Richard V. Secord the lead-off witness.

In 2009, Texas health officials confirmed the first death of a U.S. resident with swine flu.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor Pat Carroll is 94. Country singer-musician Roni Stoneman is 83. Actor Michael Murphy is 83. Comedian-actor Michael Palin is 78. Actor John Rhys-Davies is 77. Rock correspondent Kurt Loder is 76. Rock musician Bill Ward (Black Sabbath) is 73. NBC newsman Brian Williams is 62. Rock musician Shawn Drover (Megadeth) is 55. Actor Henry Cavill is 38. Soul singer Adele is 33. R&B singer Chris Brown is 32.