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This Day in History - January 16

January 16

 

27 BC – The Roman Empire is established when the title Augustus is bestowed upon Gaius Julius Caesar Octavian by the Roman Senate

 

1412 – The Medici family is appointed as the official bankers of the Papacy

 

1547 – Ivan IV or Ivan the Terrible, crowns himself the new Czar of Russia in Assumption Cathedral in Moscow

 

1749 – Italian poet Vittorio Alfieri is born

 

1757 – Architect of Salem, Massachusetts, Samuel McIntire, is born

 

1780 – The Moonlight Battle takes place off the coast of Portugal at Cape St. Vincent, where the British defeat the Spanish

 

1786 – The Council of Virginia guarantees religious freedom

 

1793 – French King Louis XVI is sentenced to death by the National Convention during the French Revolution for conspiracy with foreign governments

 

1821 – Confederate Secretary of War and 14th US Vice-President, John C. Breckinridge is born

 

1847 – John C. Fremont is appointed governor of California

 

1861 – The Crittenden Compromise, legislation proposed to keep the North and South united, dies in Congress due to lack of compromise on the part of the South

 

1865 – General William Sherman begins a march through the Carolinas

 

1883 – The US Civil Service is established

 

1900 – The US Senate recognizes the Anglo-German Treaty of 1899 in which the UK renounces its rights to the Samoan Islands

 

1909 – One of Ernest Shackleton’s polar exploration teams reaches the Magnetic South Pole

 

1909 – US singer and actress Ethel Merman is born

 

1913 – The British House of Commons accepts Home-Rule for Ireland

 

1914 – Maxim Gorky is authorized to return to Russia after being exiled for eight years due to political dissidence

 

1916 – Commander in Chief Franz Conrad von Hotzendorf’s Austro-Hungarian troops take control of the Balkan state of Montenegro

 

1917 – American admiral George Dewey dies

 

1919 – Prohibition goes into effect all across America when the 18th Amendment to the Constitution is ratified

 

1920 – The League of Nations holds its first meeting in Paris

 

1920 – Allies lift the blockade on trade with Russia

 

1932 – American zoologist Dian Fossey is born

 

1933 – American essayist and novelist Susan Sontag is born

 

1936 – The “Moon Maniac,” Albert Fish, is electrocuted to death at Sing Sing Prison in New York.  He told the guards, “It will be the supreme thrill, the only one I haven’t tried.”  Fish murdered 10-year old Grace Budd by strangling her, and then carved up her body with a saw.  He wrote to the girl’s mother six years later, describing the murder in detail as well as informing her that he prepared a stew with her flesh and ate it over a nine day period.  The letter led to his arrest.  Fish was known to be obsessed with cannibalism and confessed to the murders of other children whom he claimed to have eaten.  He also ate his own excrement and practiced sadomasochism on himself, burning himself, beating himself and inserting nails and needles into his own body.  Despite his clear insanity, he was sentenced to death, and his last statement was a handwritten note filled with obscenities

 

1938 – Jazz musician Benny Goodman performs at Carnegie Hall in New York City

 

1939 – Franklin Roosevelt asks for an extension of the Social Security Act to include more women and children

 

1940 – Hitler cancels an attack in the West due to bad weather and German attack plans being captured in Belgium

 

1942 – Japan begins advancing into Burma

 

1942 – Actress Carole Lombard is killed in a plane crash

 

1944 – Eisenhower assumes supreme command of the Allied Expeditionary Force in Europe

 

1945 – The US First and Third armies join forces at Houffalize, ending the Battle of the Bulge

 

1945 – Adolf Hitler hides in his underground bunker, where he will remain until his suicide

 

1948 – American director John Carpenter is born

 

1956 – The Egyptian government makes Islam the state religion

 

1957 – Italian conductor Arturo Toscanini dies

 

1959 – English and Nigerian singer, songwriter and producer Sade Adu is born

 

1964 – President Johnson approves Oplan 34A, an intelligence and sabotage mission aimed at destabilizing the North Vietnamese

 

1965 – Eighteen people are arrested in Mississippi for the murder of three civil rights workers in a case known as Mississippi Burning

 

1969 – Expanded peace talks are agreed upon in Paris, where representatives from the US, North and South Vietnam and the National Liberation Front would sit down at a circular table without nameplates, flags or markings 

 

1970 – Curt, Flood of the St. Louis Cardinals, files suit against Commissioner Bowie Kuhn, the presidents of the American and National Leagues and all 24 teams in the MLB over the reserve clause that prevented players from moving to another team unless they were traded.  He lost the case, but in 1975, the clause was thrown out

 

1974 – English model Kate Moss is born

 

1975 – The Irish Republican Army ends a 25-day cease-fire in Belfast

 

1979 – The Shah, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, flees Iran when his army turns on him and the country sees violent demonstrations against him

 

1979 – American actor Ted Cassidy dies

 

1986 – American evangelist, author, and publisher Herbert W. Armstrong dies

 

1990 – The Soviet government sends 11,000 troops to stop the fighting between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces in Azerbaijan

 

1991 – President George Bush waits to see if Iraq will withdraw from Kuwait by the UN deadline of midnight

 

1991 – The Persian Gulf War begins

 

1992 – A 12-year war comes to an end when the government of El Salvador signs a peace treaty with guerilla forces

 

1995 – Avalanches sweep two buses off the highway in Kashmir, India.  Over the next couple of days, more avalanches led to the deaths of 200 more people and 5,000 others needed rescue

 

1997 – TV star and comedian Bill Cosby’s son, Ennis Crosby, is shot and killed by teenager Mikhail Markhasev, who was attempting to rob him while he changed a flat tire along California’s Interstate 405 in Los Angeles

 

2001 – Laurent Kabila, president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo is assassinated

 

2003 – Space shuttle Columbia lifts off for what is supposed to be its final mission

 

2005 – Adriana Iliescu becomes the oldest recorded birth mother at age 66

 

2009 – English author and lawyer John Mortimer dies

 

2013 – Pauline Phillips, the original “Dear Abby” newspaper columnist, dies


Written by Crystal McCann

Crystal is the owner of Madison's Media, Madison's CPC and the Chief Administrative Officer for Lanterns. She lives in Texas with her husband and dogs and has two adult children. Writers seeking additional exposure: Ask how you can contribute!


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