Today is Wednesday, April 29, the 119th day of 2015. There are 246 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlights in History:
On April 29, 1945, during World War II, American soldiers liberated the Dachau concentration camp. Adolf Hitler married Eva Braun inside his “Fuhrerbunker” and designated Adm. Karl Doenitz president.
On this date:
In 1429, Joan of Arc entered the besieged city of Orleans to lead a French victory over the English.
In 1798, Joseph Haydn’s oratorio “The Creation” was rehearsed in Vienna, Austria, before an invited audience.
In 1861, the Maryland House of Delegates voted 53-13 against seceding from the Union. In Montgomery, Alabama, President Jefferson Davis asked the Confederate Congress for the authority to wage war.
In 1913, Swedish-born engineer Gideon Sundback of Hoboken, New Jersey, received a U.S. patent for a “separable fastener” — later known as the zipper.
In 1946, 28 former Japanese officials went on trial in Tokyo as war criminals; seven ended up being sentenced to death.
In 1957, the SM-1, the first military nuclear power plant, was dedicated at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
In 1968, the counterculture musical “Hair” opened on Broadway following limited engagements off-Broadway.
In 1974, President Richard M. Nixon announced he was releasing edited transcripts of some secretly made White House tape recordings related to Watergate.
In 1983, Harold Washington was sworn in as the first black mayor of Chicago.
In 1992, rioting resulting in 55 deaths erupted in Los Angeles after a jury in Simi Valley, California, acquitted four Los Angeles police officers of almost all state charges in the videotaped beating of Rodney King.
In 1993, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II announced that for the first time, Buckingham Palace would be opened to tourists to help raise money for repairs at fire-damaged Windsor Castle.
In 2011, Britain’s Prince William and Kate Middleton were married in an opulent ceremony at London’s Westminster Abbey.
Ten years ago: Insurgents unleashed a series of car bombings and other attacks across Iraq, killing at least 41 people, including three U.S. soldiers. NASA again delayed the first space shuttle launch since the Columbia disaster, worrying that ice falling off fuel tank could doom Discovery.
Five years ago: Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal declared a state of emergency in the face of the worsening oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The U.S. Navy officially ended a ban on women serving on submarines, saying the first females would be reporting for duty by 2012. A knife-wielding man slashed 29 children and three teachers at a school in eastern China (the assailant was executed a month later). The NCAA’s Board of Directors approved a 68-team format for the men’s basketball tournament beginning the next season.
One year ago: President Barack Obama ended a four-country swing through Asia and headed for home from the Philippines. Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling was banned for life by the NBA in response to racist comments he’d made in an audio recording. A botched execution using a disputed new drug combination left Oklahoma death row inmate Clayton Lockett writhing and clenching his teeth on the gurney, leading prison officials to halt the proceedings before his death from a heart attack. Walter R. Walsh, 106, who captured gangsters as an FBI agent in the 1930s and went on to train Marine snipers and become the longest-lived Olympian, died in Arlington, Virginia. Al Feldstein, 88, whose 28 years at Mad Magazine transformed the satirical publication into a cultural institution, died in Livingston, Montana. British actor Bob Hoskins, 71, died in London.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor Keith Baxter is 82. Bluesman Otis Rush is 80. Conductor Zubin Mehta is 79. Disgraced financier Bernard Madoff is 77. Pop singer Bob Miranda (The Happenings) is 73. Country singer Duane Allen (The Oak Ridge Boys) is 72. Singer Tommy James is 68. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., is 65. Movie director Phillip Noyce is 65. Country musician Wayne Secrest (Confederate Railroad) is 65. Comedian Jerry Seinfeld is 61. Actor Leslie Jordan is 60. Actress Kate Mulgrew is 60. Actor Daniel Day-Lewis is 58. Actress Michelle Pfeiffer is 57. Actress Eve Plumb is 57. Rock musician Phil King is 55. Country singer Stephanie Bentley is 52. Actor Vincent Ventresca is 49. Singer Carnie Wilson (Wilson Phillips) is 47. Actor Paul Adelstein is 46. Actress Uma Thurman is 45. Tennis player Andre Agassi is 45. Rapper Master P is 45. Actor Darby Stanchfield is 44. Country singer James Bonamy is 43. Gospel/rhythm-and-blues singer Erica Campbell (Mary Mary) is 43. Rock musician Mike Hogan (The Cranberries) is 42. Actor Tyler Labine is 37. Actress Megan Boone is 32. Actress-model Taylor Cole is 31. Actor Zane Carney is 30. Pop singer Amy Heidemann (Karmin) is 29. Pop singer Foxes is 26.
Thought for Today: “An education isn’t how much you have committed to memory, or even how much you know. It’s being able to differentiate between what you know and what you don’t.” — Anatole France, French author and critic (1844-1924).