TODAY IN HISTORY


Today is Tuesday, June 15, the 166th day of 2021. There are 199 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On June 15, 1215, England’s King John put his seal to Magna Carta (“the Great Charter”) at Runnymede.

On this date:

In 1775, the Second Continental Congress voted unanimously to appoint George Washington head of the Continental Army.

In 1864, Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton signed an order establishing a military burial ground which became Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

In 1902, the 20th Century Limited, an express passenger train between New York and Chicago, began service. (The Limited made its last run in December 1967.)

In 1904, more than 1,000 people died when fire erupted aboard the steamboat General Slocum in New York’s East River.

In 1934, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed an act making the National Guard part of the U.S. Army in the event of war or national emergency.

In 1944, American forces began their successful invasion of Saipan during World War II. B-29 Superfortresses carried out their first raids on Japan.

In 1985, the Shiite Muslim hijackers of a TWA Boeing 727 beat and shot one of their hostages, U.S. Navy diver Robert Stethem, 23, throwing him out of the plane to die on the tarmac at Beirut airport.

In 1988, the baseball romantic comedy “Bull Durham,” starring Kevin Costner and Susan Sarandon, was released by Orion Pictures.

In 1991, Mount Pinatubo in the northern Philippines exploded in one of the biggest volcanic eruptions of the 20th century, killing about 800 people.

In 1996, Ella Fitzgerald, the “first lady of song,” died in Beverly Hills, California, at age 79.

Today’s Birthdays: Singer Russell Hitchcock (Air Supply) is 72. Chinese President Xi Jinping is 68. Actor-comedian Jim Belushi is 67. Country singer Terri Gibbs is 67. Actor Julie Hagerty is 66. Rock musician Brad Gillis (Night Ranger) is 64. Baseball Hall of Famer Wade Boggs is 63. Actor Helen Hunt is 58. Actor Courteney Cox is 57. Actor-rapper Ice Cube is 52. Actor Leah Remini is 51. Actor Neil Patrick Harris is 48.