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July 24, 2013

Today in History

Today is Wednesday, July 24, the 205th day of 2013. There are 160 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight in history:

On July 24, 1959, during a visit to Moscow, Vice President Richard Nixon engaged in his famous “Kitchen Debate” with Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev.

On this date:

In 1783, Latin American revolutionary Simon Bolivar was born in Caracas, Venezuela.

In 1862, Martin Van Buren, the eighth president of the United States, and the first to have been born a U.S. citizen, died at age 79 in Kinderhook, N.Y., the town where he was born in 1782.

In 1866, Tennessee became the first state to be readmitted to the Union after the Civil War.

In 1911, Yale University history professor Hiram Bingham III found the “Lost City of the Incas,” Machu Picchu, in Peru.

In 1923, the Treaty of Lausanne, which settled the boundaries of modern Turkey, was concluded in Switzerland.

In 1937, the state of Alabama dropped charges against four of the nine young black men accused of raping two white women in the “Scottsboro Case.”

In 1952, President Harry S. Truman announced a settlement in a 53-day steel strike.

In 1969, the Apollo 11 astronauts — two of whom had been the first men to set foot on the moon — splashed down safely in the Pacific.

In 1974, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that President Richard Nixon had to turn over subpoenaed White House tape recordings to the Watergate special prosecutor.

In 1983, a two-run homer by George Brett of the Kansas City Royals was disallowed and Brett called out after New York Yankees manager Billy Martin pointed out there was too much pine tar on Brett’s bat. American League president Lee MacPhail later reinstated the home run. The game was re-completed Aug. 18, 1983, with the Royals beating the Yankees, 5-4.

In 1998, a gunman burst into the U.S. Capitol, killing two police officers before being shot and captured. (The shooter, Russell Eugene Weston Jr., is being held in a federal mental facility.) The motion picture “Saving Private Ryan,” starring Tom Hanks and directed by Steven Spielberg, was released.

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