Saturday, April 25, 2015

Today in History for April 24, 2015

Union Admiral David Farragut
April 24, 1704 – The first regular newspaper in British Colonial America, The Boston News-Letter, was published in Boston, Mass.

April 24, 1781 - British General William Phillips landed on the banks of the James River at City Port, Va. He then combined forces with British General Benedict Arnold to launch an attack on Petersburg, Va.

April 24, 1800 – The United States Library of Congress was established when President John Adams signed legislation to appropriate $5,000 to purchase "such books as may be necessary for the use of Congress." Congress ordered 740 books and three maps from London, and in just over a decade, the library had more than 3,000 items. Today, the Library of Congress has 650 miles of shelves, and 150 million items, including more than 35 million books.

April 24, 1815 – Victorian novelist Anthony Trollope was born in London, England.

April 24, 1821 – Daniel Bozeman became postmaster at Burnt Corn Spring, Ala.

April 24, 1844 - Alabama author Clifford Lanier was born in Griffin, Ga.

April 24, 1861 – The Conecuh Guards mustered at Sparta, Ala. were presented a flag from the ladies of the community at the Sparta Depot before departing for Lynchburg, Va.

April 24, 1862 - Seventeen ships under the command of Union Admiral David Farragut moved up the Mississippi River past two Confederate forts toward New Orleans. Only one ship was lost.

April 24, 1863 - Union Colonel Benjamin Grierson's troops tore up tracks and destroyed two trainloads of ammunition headed for Vicksburg, Miss.

April 24, 1863 - The Union army issued General Orders No. 100. The orders provided the code of conduct for Federal soldiers and officers when dealing with Confederate prisoners and civilians.

April 24, 1868 - Author William Garrott Brown was born in Marion, Ala.

April 24, 1877 - Federal troops were ordered out of New Orleans, bringing an end to the North's post-Civil War rule in the South.

April 24, 1895 – Philadelphia Phillies catcher Douglas Woolley “Dixie” Parker was born in Forest Home in Butler County, Ala.

April 24, 1895 – Joshua Slocum, the first person to sail single-handedly around the world, sets sail from Boston, Massachusetts aboard the sloop "Spray".

April 24, 1898 - Spain declared war on the U.S., rejecting America's ultimatum for Spain to withdraw from Cuba.

April 24, 1905 – Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and novelist Robert Penn Warren was born in Guthrie, Ky.

April 24, 1907 - The one-of-a-kind Hersheypark opened its doors. However, unlike today, back then the amusement park was not for the general public, instead it was meant to be a leisure center exclusively for Hershey Candy Company employees.

April 24-25, 1908 - In Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia, 310 people were killed by 18 tornadoes.

April 24, 1912 – The Evergreen Courant reported that Prof. J.T. McKee of Cullman, Ala. had been elected President of the Agricultural School in Evergreen, Ala., succeeding Prof. H.T. Lile.

April 24, 1915 – On this Saturday afternoon, “quite a crowd of boys and girls attended the baseball game” in the Brownville community of Conecuh County, Ala.

April 24, 1916 – Ernest Shackleton and five men of the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition launched a lifeboat from uninhabited Elephant Island in the Southern Ocean to organize a rescue for the ice-trapped ship Endurance.

April 24, 1918 – The Evergreen Courant reported that Eugene Binion of Evergreen, Ala. and John Peagler of Conecuh County’s China community had been wounded by Germans while fighting overseas in World War I.

April 24, 1922 - Alabama’s first radio station, WSY, began broadcasting. The station was started by Alabama Power Company to help keep in touch with line crews in isolated areas. In 1925, the station merged with Auburn’s WMAV to become WAPI.

April 24, 1933 – The season’s shipment of Castleberry, Ala. strawberries topped the 100-car mark on this day as 10 more cars of strawberries were loaded. The total number of cars after April 25 stood at 111 cars, which was 78 less than in 1932.

April 24, 1934 - Acclaimed actress and paranormal enthusiast Shirley MacLaine was born in Richmond, Va.

April 24, 1940 – Mystery novelist Sue Grafton was born in Louisville, Ky.

April 24, 1948 – Funeral services were held at 11 a.m. on this Saturday for Sgt. John W. Morgan, who had been killed in Europe during World War II, at Asbury Church in Conecuh County, Ala. Members of the National Guard and American Legion acted as pallbearers.

April 24, 1961 - Sandy Koufax of the Los Angeles Dodgers struck out 18 batters, becoming the first Major League pitcher to do so on two different occasions.

April 25, 1972 – Major League Baseball third baseman and left fielder Chipper Jones was born in DeLand, Fla. He would go on to play his entire career for the Atlanta Braves.

April 24, 1990 - The Hubble Space Telescope, one of NASA's longest lasting science missions, was launched. Funding for the mission to build and launch a large space telescope was approved by Congress in 1977. NASA chose Mashall Space Flight Center in Alabama to manage the design, development, and construction of telescope. The telescope was officially named in honor of Edwin P. Hubble, one of America's foremost astronomers, in 1983. Since its launch, Hubble has beamed hundreds of thousands of images back to Earth and transformed the way scientists look at the universe.

April 24, 1999 - The first Alabama Bound book fair was held in Birmingham, Ala.

April 24, 2000 – A ground-breaking ceremony held at the site of the EverFun playground site at Evergreen Municipal Park in Evergreen, Ala. Mayor Lomax Cassady and Zebbie Nix unearthed the first two shovelfuls of dirt and the work began.

April 24, 2003 – Army Sgt. Troy Jenkins, age 25, a graduate of Hillcrest High School in Evergreen, Ala., died from wounds received as a result of an explosion April 19, 2003 while on a dismounted patrol with other soldiers in Iraq. He died at the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. He was assigned to B Co., 3rd Bat., 187th Inf. Reg., Ft. Campbell, Ky. He was buried in Riverside, Calif. 

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