Today is Saturday, October 16, the 289th day of 2021. There are 76 days left in the year.
The highlight of today’s story:
On October 16, 1859, radical abolitionist John Brown raided the American arsenal of Harpers Ferry in what was then West Virginia. (Ten of Brown’s men were killed and five escaped. Brown and six partisans were captured; all were executed.)
To this date :
In 1793, during the French Revolution, Marie-Antoinette, queen of France, was beheaded.
In 1934, the Chinese Communists, besieged by the Nationalists, began their one-year “long march” from southeast to northwest China.
In 1962, the Cuban Missile Crisis began when President John F. Kennedy was informed that reconnaissance photographs had revealed the presence of missile bases in Cuba.
In 1964, China detonated its first atomic bomb, codenamed “596”, at the Lop Nur proving ground.
In 1968, American athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos sparked controversy at the Olympic Games in Mexico City by saluting “Black Power” in a victory ceremony after winning gold and bronze medals in the 200 meters.
In 1978, the College of Cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church chose Cardinal Karol Wojtyla (voy-TEE’-wah) to be the new pope; he took the name of John Paul II.
In 1984, Anglican Bishop Desmond Tutu was named the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate for his decades of nonviolent struggle for racial equality in South Africa.
In 1991, a deadly shooting took place in Killeen, Texas, when a gunman opened fire on a Luby cafeteria, killing 23 people before committing suicide.
In 1995, a large crowd of black men gathered in Washington, DC for the “Million Man March” led by Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.
In 2002, President George W. Bush signed a congressional resolution authorizing war against Iraq. The White House has announced that North Korea has revealed it has a nuclear weapons program.
In 2009, agriculture officials said pigs in Minnesota tested positive for the H1N1 virus, or swine flu, the first such cases in the United States.
In 2017, Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who had been captured and held by the Taliban for five years after leaving his post in Afghanistan, pleaded guilty to desertion and endangering his comrades. (A military judge later decided not to send him to jail.)
Ten Years Ago: The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial was officially opened in Washington, DC. British racing driver Dan Wheldon, 33, died in a 15-car crash in the Las Vegas Indy 300. Danell Leyva became the first American male gymnast to win a gold medal at the world championships since 2003, winning the title on parallel bars in Tokyo. The St. Louis Cardinals won their 18th National League pennant with a 12-6 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers in Game 6 of the NLCS.
Five years ago: Joy, jubilation and dance erupted when a group of Nigerian parents were reunited with 21 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram two and a half years earlier and released in the first negotiated release organized by the government and the Islamic extremist group. Singer Randy Travis, fiddler Charlie Daniels and producer Fred Foster were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
A year ago: a history teacher from France who had opened a discussion with his high school students on the cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad was beheaded in a street north-west of Paris; police shot dead the suspect, an 18-year-old radical Islamist. After initially rejecting the request, the Trump administration approved California’s request for disaster relief funds to clean up damage from six deadly and destructive wildfires. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said the company was wrong to block web links to an unverified story focusing on the son of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. A federal judge has refused to block New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s order limiting worship to just 10 worshipers in communities seeing spikes in coronavirus infections.
Today’s birthdays: Actor Angela Lansbury is 96 years old. Actor Peter Bowles is 85 years old. Actor-producer Tony Anthony is 84 years old. Actor Barry Corbin is 81 years old. Sports presenter Tim McCarver is 80 years old. Rock musician CF Turner (Bachman-Turner Overdrive) is 78 years old. Actor Suzanne Somers is 75 years old. The singer-rock musician Bob Weir is 74 years old. Producer-director David Zucker is 74 years old. Record label manager Jim Ed Norman is 73 years old. Actor Daniel Gerroll is 70 years old. Actor Morgan Stevens is 70 years old. Actor Martha Smith is 69 years old. actor Andy Kindler is 65. Actor-director Tim Robbins is 63 years old. Actor-musician Gary Kemp is 62 years old. Singer-musician Bob Mold is 61 years old. Actor Randy Vasquez is 60 years old. Rock musician Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) is 59 years old. Director Kenneth Lonergan is 59 years old. Actor Christian Stolte is 59 years old. Actor Todd Stashwick is 53 years old. Actor Terri J. Vaughn is 52 years old. Singer Wendy Wilson (Wilson Phillips) is 52. Rock singer Chad Gray (Mudvayne) is 50 years old. Actor Paul Sparks is 50 years old. Actor Kellie Martin is 46 years old. Singer John Mayer is 44 years old. Actor Jeremy Jackson is 41 years old. Actor Caterina S Corsone is 41 years old. Actor Brea Grant is 40 years old. US Olympic and WNBA basketball star Sue Bird is 40. Actor Kyler Pettis is 29 years old. Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper is 29. Tennis star Naomi Osaka is 24 years old.