Three Mile Island Disaster Takes Place On This Date In 1979

Today in 1776, Juan Bautista de Anza found the site for the Presidio of San Francisco.

Today in 1797, Nathaniel Briggs of New Hampshire patented the first washing machine.

Today in 1799, New York abolished slavery.

Today in 1865, the first ambulance went into service in the United States. But it wasn’t the first in the world. The first recorded use of ambulances for emergency purposes dates back to Spain in 1487 when Spain’s Queen Isabella enlisted ambulances to help those injured in the Spanish army. Then in the 1700s, Napoleon Bonaparte’s chief physician Dominique Jean Larrey also developed an ambulance system using horse-drawn carriages to take away wounded soldiers after they had already been pre-treated on the battlefield.

Today in 1915, Emma Goldman gave a speech on contraception to an audience in New York City. Among other things, she said she was shocked the sedate society around her. Goldman was arrested for discussing contraception in public and given a choice of paying $100 fine or going to jail for 15 days. She chose jail.

Today in 1974, a streaker ran onto the set of "The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson.”

Today in 1979, America's worst nuclear accident occurred at Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania. A malfunctioning cooling system damaged the reactor's core, sending radioactivity into the atmosphere.

Today in 1994, American troops completed their withdrawal from Somalia.

Today in 1996, astronauts on the space shuttle, Atlantis, said goodbye to the crew of Russia's space station "Mir." They left Shannon Lucid behind for a five-month stay in orbit. When she returned the following September 26th, she also entered the record books. In completing this mission, Dr. Lucid traveled 75.2 million miles in 188 days, 04 hours, setting the United States single mission space flight endurance record.

Today in 2000, in a unanimous ruling, the Supreme Court sharply curtailed police power to rely on anonymous tips to stop and search people.

Today in 2017, President Donald Trump signed the Energy Independence executive order undoing Obama climate-control measures.

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