Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Today in History - June 26

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Today in History - June 26

Article excerpt

Today in History - June 26

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Today in History for June 26:

On this date:

In 1284, the Pied Piper of Hamelin led 130 German children to their deaths after being refused his fee for charming rats and mice into a river.

In 1346, Britain defeated France in the "Battle of Crecy" -- in which a cannon was used, probably for the first time.

In 1653, Spanish dramatist Lope Felix De Vega-Carpio died. He wrote more than 1,800 plays and could churn out as many as five, three-act plays in two weeks.

In 1721, inoculation for human smallpox was introduced in Boston by Dr. Zabdiel Boylston, who injected his son and two slaves.

In 1723, Dutch inventor Antony van Leeunwenhoek died. He developed the microscope.

In 1784, Cape Breton separated from Nova Scotia.

In 1833, Capt. John Ross and 19 of his crew were rescued from Baffin Island. After their ship became ice-bound, they survived by living with Inuit for three years.

In 1835, John A. Macdonald, Canada's first prime minister, began practising law in Kingston, Ont.

In 1854, Sir Robert Borden, Canada's eighth prime minister, was born in Grand Pre, N.S. He served as prime minister from 1911-20.

In 1870, the first Boardwalk in the U.S. opened in Atlantic City, N.J.

In 1892, Pearl S. Buck, American Presbyterian missionary to China and author of the 1931 best-seller, "The Good Earth," was born.

In 1902, electronics and aviation inventor William Lear was born in Hannibal, Mo. His inventions included a practical car radio, which launched the Motorola Company, and the eight-track tape player. He also designed aircraft navigational aids and founded the corporate jet-maker Learjet. Lear's aircraft designs included the Canadair Challenger.

In 1910, Roy J. Plunkett, who invented teflon while working as a du Pont chemist, was born in New Carlisle, Ohio. Teflon (whose full name is tetrafluoroethylene resin) was introduced in 1949. It's used as a coating for everything from satellite components to cookware.

In 1919, the New York Daily News was first published.

In 1925, Canadian Ted Rogers Sr. invented the alternating-current tube.

In 1945, the United Nations Charter was signed in San Francisco by 50 countries, including Canada.

In 1947, R.B. Bennett, Canada's prime minister from 1930-35, died at his home in England. Bennett, who was a few days shy of his 77th birthday, is the only prime minister not buried in Canada.

In 1948, in response to a Soviet blockade of supplies going to West Berlin, the U.S. announced it would increase its daily cargo flights to the German city. The blockade, the first serious crisis of the Cold War, was rooted in Soviet fears that Western allies were consolidating their German occupation zones into a single state. The blockade provoked fears of war in the West and accelerated Allied plans to set up an independent West Germany.

In 1959, the St. Lawrence Seaway was officially opened at Montreal's St-Lambert Lock by Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister John Diefenbaker and U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower. After Canada decided in 1952 to build the Seaway entirely in Canadian territory, the U.S. Congress moved swiftly to make it a joint venture. The 318-km system of locks, canals and channels enables ocean freighters to travel between the Atlantic and the Great Lakes.

In 1959, Swedish boxer Ingemar Johansson knocked out Floyd Patterson in the third round of their match at New York's Yankee Stadium to win the heavyweight title.

In 1961, the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto was opened by Prime Minister John Diefenbaker.

In 1963, U.S. President John Kennedy wrapped up a visit to West Germany with a stopover in West Berlin, where he declared, "Ich bin ein Berliner (I am a Berliner)."

In 1976, the CN Tower was officially opened in Toronto. At 555 metres, it was then the world's tallest self-supporting structure.

In 1978, the Roman Catholic College of Cardinals elected Albino Luciani as the 263rd Pope. …

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