Today in History

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Associated Press

Posted on July 13, 2012 at 11:03 PM

Today is Saturday, July 14, the 196th day of 2012. There are 170 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On July 14, 1912, American folk singer-songwriter Woody Guthrie ("This Land Is Your Land") was born in Okemah, Okla.

On this date:

In 1789, during the French Revolution, citizens of Paris stormed the Bastille prison and released the seven prisoners inside.

In 1853, Commodore Matthew Perry relayed to Japanese officials a letter from President Millard Fillmore requesting trade relations. (Fillmore's term of office had already expired by the time the letter was delivered.)

In 1881, outlaw William H. Bonney Jr., alias "Billy the Kid," was shot and killed by Sheriff Pat Garrett in Fort Sumner, N.M.

In 1902, the original, centuries-old Campanile di San Marco in Venice, Italy, collapsed. (The bell tower was rebuilt within a decade.)

In 1911, Harry N. Atwood became the first pilot to land an airplane (a Wright Model B biplane) on the grounds of the White House after flying in from Boston; he was greeted by President William Howard Taft.

In 1913, Gerald Rudolph Ford Jr., the 38th president of the United States, was born Leslie Lynch King Jr. in Omaha, Neb.

In 1921, Italian-born anarchists Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were convicted in Dedham, Mass., of murdering a shoe company paymaster and his guard. (Sacco and Vanzetti were executed six years later.)

In 1933, all German political parties, except the Nazi Party, were outlawed.

In 1960, British researcher Jane Goodall arrived at the Gombe (GAHM'-bay) Stream Reserve in the Tanganyika Territory (in present-day Tanzania) to begin her famous study of chimpanzees in the wild.

In 1966, eight student nurses were murdered by Richard Speck in a Chicago dormitory.

In 1972, the State Department criticized actress Jane Fonda for making antiwar radio broadcasts in Hanoi, calling them "distressing." Jean Westwood was appointed the first female chair of the Democratic National Committee.

In 1976, Jimmy Carter won the Democratic presidential nomination at the party's convention in New York.

Ten years ago: A gunman tried but failed to assassinate French President Jacques Chirac (zhahk shih-RAHK') during a Bastille Day parade. Joaquin Balaguer (hwah-KEEN' bah-lah-GEHR'), ruler of the Dominican Republic for 22 years, died at age 95.

Five years ago: North Korea told the United States it had shut down its nuclear reactor, hours after a ship cruised into port loaded with oil promised in return for the country's pledge to disarm. Former presidents, fellow first ladies and about 1,800 other people attended a private funeral in Austin, Texas, for Lady Bird Johnson, the widow of President Lyndon B. Johnson.

One year ago: A federal judge in Washington, D.C. declared a mistrial in baseball star Roger Clemens' perjury trial over inadmissible evidence shown to jurors. (Clemens was acquitted in a retrial.)

(Stations: "taboo," lower case, is correct)

Today's Birthdays: Actor Dale Robertson is 89. Actor Harry Dean Stanton is 86. Actress Nancy Olson is 84. Actress Polly Bergen is 82. Former football player and actor Rosey Grier is 80. Actor Vincent Pastore is 66. Former music company executive Tommy Mottola (muh-TOH'-luh) is 63. Rock musician Chris Cross (Ultravox) is 60. Actor Jerry Houser is 60. Actor-director Eric Laneuville is 60. Actor Stan Shaw is 60. Movie producer Scott Rudin is 54. Singer-guitarist Kyle Gass is 52. Country musician Ray Herndon (McBride and the Ride) is 52. Actress Jane Lynch (TV: "Glee") is 52. Actor Jackie Earle Haley is 51. Actor Matthew Fox is 46. Rock musician Ellen Reid (Crash Test Dummies) is 46. Rock singer-musician Tanya Donelly is 46. Actress Missy Gold is 42. Olympic gold medal snowboarder Ross Rebagliati is 41. Rhythm-and-blues singer Tameka Cottle (Xscape) is 37. Country singer Jamey Johnson is 37. Hip-hop musician taboo (Black Eyed Peas) is 37. Actor Scott Porter is 33.

Thought for Today: "Life has got a habit of not standing hitched. You got to ride it like you find it. You got to change with it. If a day goes by that don't change some of your old notions for new ones, that is just about like trying to milk a dead cow." — Woody Guthrie (1912-1967).

(Above Advance for Use Saturday, July 14)

Copyright 2012, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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