Today in 399, the philosopher Socrates was sentenced to death by the city of Athens for corrupting the minds of the youth and of impiety. He committed suicide instead.
Today in 1898, the USS Maine exploded and sunk in Havana Harbor for unknown reasons. Its sinking prompted the start of the Spanish-American war.
Today in 1903, the first "teddy bear" was introduced in America. It was made by Russian immigrants Morris and Rose Michtom.
Today in 1933, Franklin Delano Roosevelt escaped an assassination attempt in Miami. The would-be assassin, Giuseppe Zangara, had severe stomach pains and believed that shooting the president-elect would cure them.
Today in 1946, Edith Houghton became the first female scout in Major League Baseball.
Today in 1953, Tenley Albright became the first American to win the women’s world figure skating championship.
Today in 1978, escaped serial killer Ted Bundy was recaptured, Pensacola, Florida.
Today in 1992, a Milwaukee, Wisconsin jury rejected mass murderer Jeffrey Dahmer's insanity plea and held him responsible for the brutal sex-torture murders of at least fifteen people. The judge sentenced him to fifteen consecutive life prison terms, but he was later murdered while in custody.
Today in 1994, Navy chief Admiral Frank Kelso II agreed to early retirement because of criticism over the Tailhook sex abuse scandal of three years earlier.
Today in 1995, the FBI arrested Kevin Mitnick, its "most wanted hacker," and charged him with cracking security for some of the nation's most protected computers. He was released in January 2000 after serving five years behind bars. He now runs a security firm.
Today in 1996, boxer Tommy Morrison announced that he had contracted HIV. He later claimed he tested negative in 2006, but ultimately died in 2013…with full-blown AIDS.
Today in 2000, FOX-TV aired "Who Wants to Marry a Multimillionaire?" a TV special, which drew huge ratings and a lot of notoriety…because the “millionaire,” Rick Rockwell, really wasn’t one. In the end, Rockwell married Darva Conger – they split as soon as they returned from the honeymoon. Still, the controversies that spilled out after that left the reputations of Rockwell and Conger shredded in the media. In 2002, “TV Guide” ranked it number 25 on its ‘50 Worst TV Shows of All Time’ list.
Today in 2002, investigators found hundreds of uncremated bodies disposed of in the woods and buildings of the Tri-State Crematory in La Fayette, Georgia. The discovery revealed one of the worst incidents of abuse in the history of the funeral service industry.
Today in 2011, President Barack Obama awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to former President George W. Bush, writer/activist Maya Angelou, musician Yo-Yo Ma, basketball legend Bill Russell and investor/philanthropist Warren Buffett.
Today in 2018, Sochi Olympic slalom champion Mikaela Shiffrin of the US won the giant slalom at the Pyeongchang Winter Games. She also took combined silver.
Today in 2019, President Donald Trump declared a national emergency to divert funds to build a border wall, after signing bipartisan spending agreement to avoid another government shutdown.