Today in History – January 26

1564 – The Council of Trent established an official distinction between Roman Catholicism and Protestantism.

1697 – Isaac Newton received Jean Bernoulli’s 6 month time-limit problem.  He solved the problem before going to bed that same night.

1784 – Benjamin Franklin expressed unhappiness over the eagle as America’s symbol.  His suggestion was a turkey.

1788 – The British First Fleet, led by Arthur Phillip, sailed into Port Jackson (Sydney Harbour) to establish Sydney, the first permanent European settlement on Australia. Commemorated as Australia Day.

1837 – Michigan was admitted as the 26th U.S. state.

1838 – Tennessee enacted the first prohibition law in the United States.

1856 – First Battle of Seattle: Marines from the USS Decatur drove off American Indian attackers after all-day battle with settlers.

1861 – American Civil War: The state of Louisiana seceded from the Union.

1863 – American Civil War: General Ambrose Burnside was relieved of command of the Army of the Potomac after the disastrous Fredericksburg campaign. He was replaced by Joseph Hooker.

1863 – American Civil War: Governor of Massachusetts John Albion Andrew received permission from the Secretary of War to raise a militia organization for men of African descent.

1870 – Reconstruction Era: Virginia was readmitted to the Union.

1875 – The electric dental drill was patented by George F. Green.

1905 – The world’s largest diamond ever, the Cullinan, which weighs 3,106.75 carats (0.621350 kg), was found at the Premier Mine near Pretoria in South Africa.

1915 – The Rocky Mountain National Park was established by an act of the U.S. Congress.

1920 – Former Ford Motor Co. executive Henry Leland launched the Lincoln Motor Company which he later sold to his former employer.

1926 – John Logie Baird gave the first public demonstration of television in his laboratory in London.

1934 – The Apollo Theater reopened in Harlem, New York City.

1939 – Filming began on film adaptation of “Gone With The Wind”.

1942 – World War II: The first United States forces arrived in Europe, landing in Northern Ireland.

1945 – World War II: Audie Murphy displayed valor and bravery in action for which he was later awarded the Medal of Honor.

1945 – Soviet forces reached Auschwitz concentration camp.

1949 – The Hale telescope at Palomar Observatory saw first light under the direction of Edwin Hubble, becoming the largest aperture optical telescope (until BTA-6 is built in 1976).

1961 – “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” by Elvis Presley hit #1.

1962 – Ranger 3 was launched to study the Moon. The space probe later missed the moon by 22,000 miles.

1962 – Bishop Burke of Buffalo Catholic dioceses declared Chubby Checker’s “The Twist” to be impure and banned it from all Catholic schools.

1966 – The three Beaumont children disappeared from a beach in Glenelg, South Australia, which resulted in one of the country’s largest-ever police investigations.  The case remains unsolved.

1967 – Chicago Blizzard struck with a record 23 inches of snow fall which caused 800 buses and 50,000 automobiles to be abandoned.

1970 – “Bridge over Troubled Water,” the 5th and final studio album by Simon & Garfunkel, was released. (Grammy Award Album of the Year, Best Engineered Non-Classical Album 1971)

1972 – JAT Flight 367 was destroyed by a terrorist bomb which killed 27 of the 28 people on board the DC-9. Flight attendant Vesna Vulović survived with critical injuries.

1979 “The Dukes of Hazzard” premiered on CBS.

1980 – 175,000 people paid to hear Frank Sinatra sing in Rio de Janeiro.

1988 – “Phantom of the Opera” opened at the Majestic Theater in New York City.  It continued for more than 4,000 performances.

1989 – AT&T reported its first loss in 103 years; $1.67 B in 1988.

1998 – Lewinsky scandal: On American television, U.S. President Bill Clinton denied having had “sexual relations” with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

2009 – Nadya Suleman gave birth to the world’s first surviving octuplets.

2020 – A Sikorsky S-76B flying from John Wayne Airport to Camarillo Airport crashed in Calabasas, 30 miles west of Los Angeles, and killed all nine people on board, including former five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant.

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