Saturday, June 25, 2016

Today in History for June 24, 2016

General Winfield Scott
June 24, 1314 – During the First War of Scottish Independence, the Battle of Bannockburn concluded with a decisive victory by Scottish forces led by Robert the Bruce, though England did not recognize Scottish independence until 1328 with the signing of the Treaty of Edinburgh–Northampton.

June 24, 1374 – A sudden outbreak of St. John's Dance caused people in the streets of Aachen, Germany to experience hallucinations and begin to jump and twitch uncontrollably until they collapsed from exhaustion. This outbreak of dancing plague or dancing mania is also known as St. Vitus’ Dance. Scientists tend to believe it was due to ergot poisoning or mass hysteria.

June 24, 1497 – Italian explorer John Cabot, sailing in the service of England, landed in North America at Newfoundland leading the first European exploration of the region since the Vikings.

June 24, 1597 – The first Dutch voyage to the East Indies reached Bantam (on Java).

June 24, 1604 – Samuel de Champlain discovered the mouth of the Saint John River, site of Reversing Falls and the present day city of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada.

June 24, 1664 - New Jersey, named after the Isle of Jersey, was founded.

June 24, 1717 – The Premier Grand Lodge of England, the first Masonic Grand Lodge in the world (now the United Grand Lodge of England), was founded in London.

June 24, 1777 – Scottish commander and Arctic explorer John Ross was born in Inch, Wigtownshire, Scotland.

June 24, 1778 - The Continental Congress returned to Philadelphia. They had been in York, Pa. during the British occupation of Philadelphia.

June 24, 1779 – During the American Revolutionary War, the Great Siege of Gibraltar began.

June 24, 1803 - Matthew Thornton, one of New Hampshire’s delegates to the second Continental Congress and an ex post facto signer of the Declaration of Independence, died at age 89 while visiting his daughter in Newburyport, Mass.

June 24, 1831 - Alabama author Rebecca Harding Davis was born in Washington, Pa.

June 24, 1842 - Alabama author Ambrose Bierce was born near Horse Cave Creek in Meigs County, Ohio. He wrote essays, journalism, and satire, and he’s well known for his short stories, especially “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” (1890) and “The Devil’s Dictionary” (1906). He volunteered for the Union Army when the Civil War broke out and fought in some of its bloodiest battles.

June 24, 1861 - Federal gunboats attacked Confederate batteries at Mathias Point, Va.

June 24, 1861 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Jackson, Missouri.

June 24, 1862 - U.S. President Abraham Lincoln met with retired General Winfield Scott at West Point, N.Y. to discuss Union strategy in Virginia. Scott was a hero of the Mexican War and the commander of all Union forces at the outbreak of the Civil War.

June 24, 1862 – During the Civil War, Federal reconnaissance was conducted from Washington to Tranter’s Creek, N.C. Skirmishes were also fought on Hamilton’s Plantation, near Grand Gulf, Miss. and at Mechanicsville, Virginia

June 24, 1863 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Mound Plantation, near lake Providence, Bayou Boeuf, and Chacahoula Station in Louisiana; and at Middleton, Big Springs Ranch, Christina, Hoover’s Gap and Liberty Gap in Tennessee.

June 24, 1863 – During the Civil War, the siege at Vicksburg, Miss. entered Day 37.

June 24, 1864 - Union commander Ambrose Burnside approved the plan for troops to dig a tunnel toward the Confederates at Petersburg, Va. with the intention of using gunpowder to blow a gap in the Rebel fortifications. The explosion was successfully set off on July 30.

June 24, 1864 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Allatoona and Spring Place, Ga.; at Roanoke Station, Va.; at Morganfield, Ky.; at Ashwood, Miss.; at Point Pleasant, La.; at Rancho Las Rinas, Texas; and along the Yellow River in Florida.

June 24, 1865 – During the Civil War, commercial restrictions were removed from states and territories west of the Mississippi River by President Johnson.

June 24, 1896 - Booker T. Washington, president of Tuskegee Institute, became the first African American to be awarded an honorary degree by Harvard University. Born into slavery in Virginia, Washington moved to Alabama in 1881 to open Tuskegee Normal School. He soon gained fame as an educational leader among black Americans, a fact which Harvard recognized with a Master of Arts degree.

June 24, 1896 – The Hon. Chas. L. Scott of Mount Pleasant visited Monroeville, Ala. on this Wednesday to attend the senatorial convention.

June 24, 1900 - Alabama author Zelda Fitzgerald was born in Montgomery, Ala.

June 24, 1906 – A group of young people gathered at Rikard’s Mill on this Sunday to go boat riding, but they didn’t ride long after they found alligator tracks on the bank of the creek.

June 24, 1908 – Former U.S. President Grover Cleveland died of a heart attack at the age of 71 in Princeton, N.J. He had served as President of the United States for two separate terms (1885-1889 and 1893-1897).

June 24, 1912 - The remains of Maggie Relfe Donaldson, who died on June 23 at her home in Montgomery, were brought and interred in Evergreen cemetery on this Monday afternoon. Deceased was a sister of W.C. Relfe of West Side. She was 52 years old and was survived by her husband and three children. Robert Relfe and Payne Robertson of Montgomery came down to the funeral of Donaldson on this Monday. Deceased was a sister of Relfe.

June 24, 1914 - The Monroeville, Ala. baseball team played Atmore and “as usual came off victor, the score being four to three.”

June 24, 1915 – On this Wednesday morning, John Salter and Robert Watkins were arrested at a residence in Evergreen, Ala. They would later confess to the brutal murder of Martha Lassiter, the attempted murder of Wiley House and the robbery and burning of House’s residence near Burnt Corn on June 23, 2015.

June 24, 1916 – Poet John Ciardi was born in Little Italy in Boston’s North End.

June 24, 1916 - John F. McKinley, postmaster at River Ridge, was shot and instantly killed on this Saturday night. McKinley had just arisen from the supper table and walked out on the porch at his home when without warning the fatal shot was fired from the darkness, evidently at close range, the entire charge of buckshot taking effect in the chest. McKinley expired almost immediately. The alarm spread quickly over the community and a number of neighbors soon gathered but nothing was found to indicate the identity of the assassin. Sheriff Sawyer was notified of the crime and hastened to scene. Investigation was instituted and certain circumstances were discovered, casting strong suspicions upon certain individuals upon the strength of which several arrests were made. Among those taken into custody were William McKinley and Ed McKinley, father and son, the latter a young man about 20 years old and mail carrier on the star route between Tunnel Springs and Franklin. After remaining in jail several days, the McKinleys notified Solicitor McDuffie and associate prosecuting attorneys that they wished to make voluntary statements concerning the killing and the opportunity was given each of them to do so under oath. When brought before the Solicitor, Ed McKinley made a clean admission of the whole horrible affair, confessing circumstantially and in detail how he deliberately planned and executed the crime. The statement of the father, Wm. McKinley corroborated that of his son as regards a previous threat and an admission of guilt after the crime was committed. He stated that he endeavored to dissuade his son from the violent purpose and thought he had succeeded in doing so. It was not believed that the father had any criminal connection with the affair, and he would probably be discharged.

June 24, 1922 - The American Professional Football Association took the name of the National Football League.

June 24, 1935 - Journalist Pete Hamill is born on this day in 1935 to Irish immigrants in Brooklyn. He is best known for his 1995 book, “A Drinking Life.”

June 24, 1937 – The Evergreen Courant reported that Col. Jim Walton of Meridian, Miss., the Secretary-Director of the General Sam Dale Historical Society, was in Conecuh County, Ala. that week, “checking records and unraveling the ancient history of Sam Dale and his connection with history of the county, especially the battle of Burnt Corn.”

June 24, 1937 – Baseball teams from Evergreen and Brewton were scheduled to play a doubleheader at Gantt Field in Evergreen, Ala. on this Thursday, starting at 2:30 p.m.

June 24, 1937 – Novelist Anita Desai was born in Mussoorie, India.

June 24, 1938 – Pieces of a meteor, estimated to have weighed 450 metric tons when it hit the Earth's atmosphere and exploded, land near Chicora, Pennsylvania.

June 24, 1938 – Major League Baseball first baseman Don Mincher was born in Huntsville, Ala. He would go on to play for the Washington Senators, the Minnesota Twins, the California Angels, the Seattle Pilots, the Oakland Athletics and the Texas Rangers.

June 24, 1939 – Poet Stephen Dunn was born in Forest Hills, N.Y. His poetry collection, “Different Hours,” won the Pulitzer Prize in 2001.

June 24, 1942 - John Hosea King, age 71, a well known and respected farmer, died at his home eight miles east of Evergreen at 1 a.m. on this Wednesday morning, following an illness of about two weeks. Deceased was a native and lifelong resident of the community in which he lived. He engaged in farming and sawmilling and was one of the leading citizens of his community.

June 24, 1947 - Pilot Kenneth Arnold reported seeing nine UFOs over Mount Rainier, Wash., which he described as like "saucers skipping over the water." His sighting was the first widely reported UFO sighting, kicked off the modern UFO era and led the press to coin the phrase 'flying saucers.'

June 24, 1951 – On this Sunday afternoon in Conecuh Amateur League play, the Loree Dollies were scheduled to play the Paul Aces at Paul, Ala.

June 24, 1952 – In their first game of the season, Evergreen’s Junior American Legion baseball team lost to Andalusia, 8-7, in Andalusia, Ala. Evergreen pitcher Hugh Ellington struck out three, walked one and gave up six hits on the mound and led the team at the plate with two hits.

June 24, 1949 – The first television western, Hopalong Cassidy, was aired on NBC starring William Boyd.

June 24, 1954 – During the First Indochina War, at the Battle of Mang Yang Pass, Viet Minh troops belonging to the 803rd Regiment ambushed G.M. 100 of France in An Khê.

June 24, 1962 – Greening Masonic Lodge No. 53 in Evergreen, Ala. was scheduled to install its newly elected officers during a regular meeting on this day.

June 24, 1962 - The New York Yankees beat the Detroit Tigers, 9-7, after 22 innings.

June 24, 1968 - Jim Northrup of the Detroit Tigers tied a Major League Baseball record when he hit two grand slams in one game.

June 24, 1970 – Birmingham, Ala. native Lee May hit the last home run in the history of Cincinnati’s Crosley Field during the park’s final game. The game-winning shot came in the eighth inning off San Francisco Giants pitcher Juan Marichal.

June 24, 1970 - In an amendment offered by Senator Robert Dole (R-Kansas) to the Foreign Military Sales Act, the Senate voted 81 to 10 to repeal the Tonkin Gulf Resolution.

June 24, 1973 - Graham Martin was sworn in as Ambassador to South Vietnam, replacing Ellsworth Bunker, who had served in that position since April 1967.

June 24, 1974 - Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama" was released.

June 24, 1976 – NFL running back and assistant coach Brock Olivo was born in St. Louis, Mo. He went on to play for Missouri and the Detroit Lions and also served as an assistant coach at Coastal Carolina and the Kansas City Chiefs.

June 24, 1979 - Bob Watson of the Houston Astros hit for the cycle against San Francisco. On Sept. 15, 1979, he became the first player to hit for the cycle in both leagues when he did it with the Boston Red Sox.

June 24, 1983 – The Evergreen Courant reported that the Conecuh County Sheriff’s Department, under Sheriff Edwin L. Booker, had seized 75 marijuana plants from a field in northeast Conecuh County, Ala., between McKenzie and Travis Bridge. The plants were six to 10 feet in height and had an estimated street value of $15,000. The marijuana was spotted from the air by a helicopter used by the Alabama Bureau of Investigation.

June 24, 1984 – The Blueberry Hill lounge on State Highway 59 between Uriah and Huxford in Monroe County was destroyed by fire on this Sunday. The building was already engulfed in flames at 12:30 p.m. when the Atmore Fire Department arrived with eight men and two trucks, according to Atmore Fire Chief Charles Rutherford. He said the fire was reported in Atmore at 12:15 p.m. by a neighbor.

June 24, 1993 - Yale University computer science professor David Gelernter was seriously injured while opening his mail when a padded envelope explodes in his hands. The attack just came two days after a University of California geneticist was injured by a similar bomb and was the latest in a string of bombings since 1978 that authorities believed to be related. In the aftermath of the attack on Gelernter, various federal departments established the UNABOM Task Force, which launched an intensive search for the so-called “Unabomber.”

June 24, 1997 – The U.S. Air Force issued a 231-page report, titled “The Roswell Report, Case Closed,” dismissing the long-standing claims of an alien spacecraft crash near Roswell, New Mexico in 1947. They suggested that recovered bodies were not those of aliens but crash test dummies used in parachute experiments.

June 24, 1997 – The 12-2 Braves were named the league champions on this Tuesday night as Evergreen Little League closed out the 1997 season. The members of the Braves were Jonathan Booth, Bryan Boykin, Pierre Evans, Robert Kent, Josh Macks, Anthony Maxwell, Jonathan Rodgers, Bryson Stallworth, Edward Thomas, Josh Watson and Josh Williams. The team’s coaches were Jackie Gorum, Ronnie Kent and Jerry Evers.

June 24, 1999 – The Monroe Journal reported that Excel’s Giants won the South Monroe Little League championship in the Major League division for the second straight season, recording a perfect 12-0 record that season. Team members included Trisha Smith, David Busby, Adam Smith, Brian House, Cade Jay, Bobby Farish, Coach Steve McInnis, Neal Butler, Kyle Dorriety, Blake White, Coach David Tuberville, Trent Dawson, Josh House, Coach Bruce White and Jerry Elliott.

June 24, 1999 – The Monroe Journal reported that the Monroeville Little League’s 11- and 12-year-old all-stars drew a first-round bye in the District 3 tournament in Bay Minette. The team was to play on Sun., July 4, at 5 p.m. against the winner of a game between Lowndes County and Bay Minette that was set to be played Sat., July 3, at 2 p.m. Members of Monroeville’s team included Terrell Armstrong, Charley Kirkland, Josh Lowery, Josh Goldman, Leterius Leggitte, Terrance Wiggins, Gecoby Penn, Watson Black, Anthony Stovall, Demetrius Harris, Terrell Richardson and Jeremy Rush. Coaches included James Harris, Marshall Gibbs and Wynesta Stanton.

June 24, 2003 - Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants became the first player to reach 500 home runs and 500 stolen bases.

June 24, 2005 – The first geocache ever established in Conecuh County was placed near the southbound rest stop on Interstate Highway 65, south of Evergreen, Ala.

June 24, 2013 - The pilot episode of "Under the Dome" aired.

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