Today in History — Feb. 1, 2018
Today is Thursday, Feb. 1, the 32nd day of 2018. There are 333 days left in the year.
Today in History
On Feb. 1, 1943, during World War II, one of America’s most highly decorated military units, the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, made up almost exclusively of Japanese-Americans, was authorized.
On this date:
In 1790, the U.S. Supreme Court convened for the first time in New York. (However, since only three of the six justices were present, the court recessed until the next day.)
In 1893, inventor Thomas Edison completed work on the world’s first motion picture studio, his “Black Maria,” in West Orange, New Jersey. The opera “Manon Lescaut,” by Giacomo Puccini (poo-CHEE’-nee), premiered in Turin, Italy.
In 1922, in one of Hollywood’s most enduring mysteries, movie director William Desmond Taylor was shot to death in his Los Angeles home; the killing has never been solved.
In 1942, during World War II, the Voice of America broadcast its first program to Europe, relaying it through the facilities of the British Broadcasting Corp. in London.
In 1946, Norwegian statesman Trygve Lie (TRIHG’-vuh lee) was chosen to be the first secretary-general of the United Nations.
In 1959, men in Switzerland rejected giving women the right to vote by a more than 2-1 referendum margin. (Swiss women gained the right to vote in 1971.)
In 1960, four black college students began a sit-in protest at a Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina, where they’d been refused service.
In 1968, during the Vietnam War, South Vietnam’s police chief (Nguyen Ngoc Loan) executed a Viet Cong officer with a pistol shot to the head in a scene captured by news photographers. Richard M. Nixon announced his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
In 1979, Iranian religious leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (hoh-MAY’-nee) received a tumultuous welcome in Tehran as he ended nearly 15 years of exile.
In 1988, actress Heather O’Rourke, co-star of the 1982 movie “Poltergeist,” died in San Diego at age 12.
In 1993, Gary Bettman took office as the National Hockey League’s first commissioner, succeeding the NHL’s final president, Gil Stein.
In 2003, the space shuttle Columbia broke up during re-entry, killing all seven of its crew members: commander Rick Husband; pilot William McCool; payload commander Michael Anderson; mission specialists Kalpana Chawla, David Brown and Laurel Clark; and payload specialist Ilan Ramon, the first Israeli in space.
Ten years ago
Exxon Mobil posted a then-record annual profit by a U.S. company — $40.6 billion — and the biggest quarterly profit to that time. Microsoft announced an unsolicited bid for Yahoo, which later rejected it. Remote-controlled explosives strapped to two mentally disabled women killed at least 100 people in Baghdad.
Five years ago
A suicide bomber struck the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, killing a Turkish security guard. Hillary Rodham Clinton formally resigned as America’s 67th secretary of state, capping a four-year tenure. The Dow Jones industrial average closed at 14,009.79, above the 14,000 mark for the first time in more than five years. Former New York City Mayor Ed Koch (kahch) died at age 88.
One year ago
The Republican-controlled Senate confirmed Rex Tillerson, 56-43, to be U.S. secretary of state. A nearly 20-hour prison hostage standoff began in Delaware as inmates at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center seized four staff members; one guard was killed, two hostages released before authorities put down the uprising and rescued the remaining captive. Violence and rioting at the University of California, Berkeley, forced the cancellation of a talk by right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos. Edward Tipper, a World War II paratrooper who was portrayed in the HBO series “Band of Brothers,” died in Lakewood, Colorado, at age 95.
Actor Stuart Whitman is 90. Folk singer Bob Shane (The Kingston Trio) is 84. Singer Don Everly is 81. Actor Garrett Morris is 81. Singer Ray Sawyer (Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show) is 81. Bluegrass singer Del McCoury is 79. TV personality-singer Joy Philbin is 77. Comedian-actor-director Terry Jones is 76. Political commentator Fred Barnes is 75. Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., is 74. Rock musician Mike Campbell (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers) is 68. Blues singer-musician Sonny Landreth is 67. Actor-writer-producer Bill Mumy (MOO’-mee) is 64. Rock singer Exene Cervenka is 62. Actor Linus Roache is 54. Princess Stephanie of Monaco is 53. Country musician Dwayne Dupuy (Ricochet) is 53. Actress Sherilyn Fenn is 53. Lisa Marie Presley is 50. Comedian-actor Pauly Shore is 50. Actor Brian Krause is 49. Jazz musician Joshua Redman is 49. Rock musician Patrick Wilson (Weezer) is 49. Actor Michael C. Hall is 47. Rock musician Ron Welty is 47. Rapper Big Boi (Outkast) is 43. Roots rocker Jason Isbell is 39. Country singer Julie Roberts is 39. Actor Jarrett Lennon is 36. Rock singer-musician Andrew VanWyngarden is 35. TV personality Lauren Conrad is 32. Actress-singer Heather Morris is 31. Actress and mixed martial artist Ronda Rousey is 31. Rock singer Harry Styles (One Direction) is 24.
Thought for Today
“Courage is doing what you’re afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you’re scared.” — Eddie Rickenbacker, American war hero (1890-1973).