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Old Tuesday, May 06, 2008
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Today in History - May 6

Today is Tuesday, May 6, the 127th day of 2008. There are 239 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On May 6, 1937, the hydrogen-filled German dirigible Hindenburg burned and crashed in Lakehurst, N.J., killing 35 of the 97 people on board and a Navy crewman on the ground.

On this date:

In 1861, Arkansas seceded from the Union.

In 1889, the Paris Exposition formally opened, featuring the just-completed Eiffel Tower.

In 1910, Britain's King Edward VII died.

In 1935, the Works Progress Administration began operating.

In 1942, during World War II some 15,000 Americans and Filipinos on Corregidor surrendered to the Japanese.

In 1954, medical student Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile during a track meet in Oxford, England, in 3 minutes, 59.4 seconds.

In 1960, Britain's Princess Margaret married Anthony Armstrong-Jones, a commoner, at Westminster Abbey. (They divorced in 1978.)

In 1981, Yale architecture student Maya Ying Lin was named winner of a competition to design the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

In 1994, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and French President Francois Mitterrand formally opened the Channel Tunnel between their countries.

In 2002, right-wing Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn was shot and killed in Hilversum, Netherlands. (Volkert van der Graaf was later convicted of killing Fortuyn and was sentenced to 18 years in prison.)

Ten years ago: U.S. Rep. Dan Burton, chairman of the House fund-raising inquiry, apologized to GOP colleagues for the furor over his release of selected portions of tapes of former Associate Attorney General Webster Hubbell's prison conversations; Burton's top investigator departed, ordered fired by House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Astronomers announced the detection of a gamma ray burst in a galaxy 12 billion light years away that was equal to the energy expended by the sun in 1 trillion years.

Five years ago: Sen. Bob Graham of Florida launched his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination by accusing President Bush of retreating from the war on terrorism to "settle old scores" between the Bush family and Iraq's Saddam Hussein. White House budget chief Mitchell Daniels announced his resignation. Kmart Corporation emerged from bankruptcy after more than 15 months of Chapter 11 protection.

One year ago: Conservative Nicolas Sarkozy won the French presidency by a comfortable margin over socialist opponent Segolene Royal.

Today's Birthdays: Baseball Hall-of-Famer Willie Mays is 77. Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., is 74. Rock singer Bob Seger is 63. Singer Jimmie Dale Gilmore is 63. Actor Alan Dale is 61. Actor Ben Masters is 61. Actor Gregg Henry is 56. Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is 55. TV personality Tom Bergeron is 53. Actress Roma Downey is 48. Rock singer John Flansburgh (They Might Be Giants) is 48. Actor George Clooney is 47. Actor Clay O'Brien is 47. Rock singer-musician Tony Scalzo (Fastball) is 44. Actress Leslie Hope is 43. Rock musician Mark Bryan (Hootie and the Blowfish) is 41. Rock musician Chris Shiflett (Foo Fighters) is 37. Actress Adrianne Palicki is 25.

Thought for Today: "How glorious it is — and also how painful — to be an exception." — Alfred de Musset, French author (1810-1857).


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