GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

October 29, 2012

Today in History

The Associated Press
Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Today is Monday, Oct. 29, the 303rd day of 2012. There are 63 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight in history:

On Oct. 29, 1929, Wall Street crashed on “Black Tuesday,” heralding the beginning of America’s Great Depression.

On this date:

In 1618, Sir Walter Raleigh, the English courtier, military adventurer and poet, was executed in London.

In 1787, the opera “Don Giovanni” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had its world premiere in Prague.

In 1901, President William McKinley’s assassin, Leon Czolgosz, was electrocuted.

In 1923, the Republic of Turkey was proclaimed.

In 1940, Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson drew the first number — 158 — in America’s first peacetime military draft.

In 1956, during the Suez Canal crisis, Israel invaded Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. “The Huntley-Brinkley Report” premiered as NBC’s nightly television newscast.

In 1960, a chartered plane carrying the California Polytechnic State University football team crashed on takeoff from Toledo, Ohio, killing 22 of the 48 people on board.

In 1966, the National Organization for Women was formally organized during a conference in Washington, D.C.

In 1967, Expo 67 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, closed after six months.

In 1979, on the 50th anniversary of the great stock market crash, anti-nuclear protesters tried but failed to shut down the New York Stock Exchange.

In 1987, following the confirmation defeat of Robert H. Bork to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, President Ronald Reagan announced his choice of Douglas H. Ginsburg, a nomination that fell apart over revelations of Ginsburg’s previous marijuana use. Jazz great Woody Herman died in Los Angeles at age 74.

In 1998, Sen. John Glenn, at age 77, roared back into space aboard the shuttle Discovery, retracing the trail he’d blazed for America’s astronauts 36 years earlier.

Ten years ago: A Minneapolis memorial service for the late Sen. Paul Wellstone turned into a virtual political rally as friends and relatives urged Minnesotans to honor his memory by putting a Democrat in his seat on Election Day.

Five years ago: A suicide bomber rode his bicycle into a crowd of police recruits in Baqouba, Iraq, killing some 30 people. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert announced he had prostate cancer, but would continue to perform his duties. Authorities in Chad charged six French charity workers with kidnapping after they tried to put 103 children on a plane to France, claiming they were orphans from Sudan’s conflict-wracked Darfur region. (The charity workers were later convicted, jailed for several months, then pardoned.) A Moscow court sentenced Alexander Pichushkin, convicted of 48 murders, to life imprisonment, ending one of Russia’s worst serial killer cases.

One year ago: A “white Halloween” storm with record-setting snowfalls brought down trees across the northeastern U.S., knocking out power to millions; 39 deaths were blamed on the weather. A grain elevator explosion in Atchison, Kan., killed six people. A Taliban suicide bomber rammed a vehicle loaded with explosives into an armored NATO bus on a busy thoroughfare in Kabul, killing 17 people, including a dozen Americans. Joe Paterno broke Eddie Robinson’s record for victories by a Division I coach with No. 409 in Penn State’s sloppy 10-7 win over Illinois. Jimmy Savile, 84, a veteran British broadcaster and famously eccentric culture figure, died in Leeds, England, two days before his birthday. (Since then, there have been allegations that Savile had molested dozens, possibly hundreds, of girls.)

Today’s birthdays: Bluegrass singer-musician Sonny Osborne (The Osborne Brothers) is 75. Country singer Lee Clayton is 70. Rock musician Denny Laine is 68. Singer Melba Moore is 67. Musician Peter Green is 66. Actor Richard Dreyfuss is 65. Actress Kate Jackson is 64. The president of Turkey, Abdullah Gul, is 62. Actor Dan Castellaneta (“The Simpsons”), country musician Steve Kellough (Wild Horses) and comic strip artist Tom Wilson (“Ziggy”) are 55. Actress Finola Hughes is 53. Singer Randy Jackson is 51. Rock musician Peter Timmins (Cowboy Junkies) is 47. Actress Joely Fisher, rapper Paris and actor Rufus Sewell are 45. Actor Grayson McCouch is 44. Rock singer SA Martinez (311) is 43. Musician Toby Smith is 42. Actress Winona Ryder is 41. Actress Tracee Ellis Ross is 40. Actors Trevor Lissauer and Gabrielle Union, and Olympic gold medal bobsledder Vonetta Flowers are 39. Actress Milena Govich is 36. Actors Jon Abrahams and Brendan Fehr are 35. Actor Ben Foster is 32. Rock musician Chris Baio (Vampire Weekend) is 28. Actress India Eisley (TV: “The Secret Life of the American Teenager”) is 19.

Thought for today: “An old error is always more popular than a new truth.” — German proverb.