Today in 1858, while campaigning for the Senate in Springfield, Illinois, Abraham Lincoln made a speech calling for a resolution to the slavery issue. During the speech, he said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”
Today in 1893,W. Rueckheim invented Cracker Jacks.
Today in 1903, the Pepsi Cola company was formed.
Today in 1929, Otto E. Funk completed his 183-day, 4,165-mile walk from New York to San Francisco. The 62-year-old man accomplished this feat while playing his violin all the way.
Today in 1935, Congress accepted FDR’s “New Deal” and enacted the Social Security Act of 1935 (and later amendments) that provided pensions to the aged, benefit payments to dependent mothers, crippled children and blind people, and unemployment insurance. FDR signed it the following August and it became law.
Today in 1944, George Stinney, a 14-year-old African-American boy, was wrongfully executed for the murder of two white girls, becoming the youngest person ever executed in 20th-century America. Fast forward 70 years later to 2004 – and a re-examination of the Stinney case began. Years later (in 2014) after a judicial review, his conviction was vacated when a court ruled that he had not received a fair trial.
Today in 1952, the book, “Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl,” was first published in the United States.
Today in 1987, a New York jury acquitted Bernhard Goetz of attempted murder in the subway shooting of four young blacks he said were going to rob him. He was found guilty on the charge of criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree. Goetz was sentenced to six months in jail, one year of psychiatric treatment, five years of probation, two hundred hours of community service and a fine of $5,000. In 1996, a civil jury ordered Goetz to pay $43-million to one of the people he shot.
Today in 1992, Caspar Weinberger (the Secretary of Defense from 1981-87) was indicted on Iran-contra charge.
Today in 1998, a 40-year-old Florida woman gave birth in the first-ever live birth on the Internet before an estimated audience of 2-million people. While she didn’t use her name at all, it was thanks to the broadcast, that authorities became aware of the woman – later identified as Elizabeth Ann Oliver – and arrested her and her husband on an outstanding warrant for writing bad checks.
Today in 2008, California began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The issuance of those licenses was halted during the period of November 5, 2008 through June 27, 2013 (though existing same-sex marriages continued to be valid) due to the passage of Proposition 8—a state constitutional amendment barring same-sex marriages. The granting of same-sex marriages recommenced following the United States Supreme Court decision in Hollingsworth v. Perry, which restored the effect of a federal district court ruling that overturned Proposition 8 as unconstitutional.
Today in 2016, Philadelphia became the first state to pass a tax on sweetened drinks.
Today in 2017, President Donald Trump reinstated Cuban travel and business restrictions after that had been loosened by President Obama.
Today in 2017, Amazon announced plans to buy Whole Foods for $13.7-billion.
Today in 2018, Michelle Carter was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in a trial that raised questions about whether words can kill. She had sent her boyfriend a barrage of text messages urging him to kill himself when they were both teenagers was convicted in Taunton, Massachusetts.