Today in History – January 28

814 – The death of Charlemagne, the first Holy Roman Emperor, brought about the accession of his son Louis the Pious as ruler of the Frankish Empire.

1547 – Edward VI, the nine-year-old son of Henry VIII, became King of England on his father’s death.

1591 – Execution of Agnes Sampson, accused of witchcraft in Edinburgh.

1754 – Sir Horace Walpole coined the word serendipity in a letter to a friend.

1813 – Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice was first published in the United Kingdom.

1855 – A locomotive on the Panama Canal Railway ran from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean for the first time.

1896 – Walter Arnold of East Peckham, Kent, became the first person to be convicted of speeding. He was fined one shilling, plus costs, for speeding at 8 mph, thereby exceeding the contemporary speed limit of 2 mph.

1902 – The Carnegie Institution of Washington was founded in Washington, D.C. with a $10 million gift from Andrew Carnegie.

1909 – United States troops left Cuba, with the exception of Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, after being there since the Spanish–American War.

1915 – An act of the U.S. Congress created the United States Coast Guard as a branch of the United States Armed Forces.

1922 – Knickerbocker Storm: Washington, D.C.’s biggest snowfall, caused a disaster when the roof of the Knickerbocker Theatre collapsed and killed over 100 people.

1938 – The World Land Speed Record on a public road was broken by Rudolf Caracciola in the Mercedes-Benz W195 at a speed of 268.9 mph.

1942 – WW II Navy flier Don Mason sent the message “Sighted sub sank same.”

1945 – World War II: Supplies began to reach the Republic of China over the newly reopened Burma Road.

1956 – Elvis Presley made his first national television appearance.

1958 – The Lego company patented the design of its Lego bricks, which are still compatible with bricks produced today.

1963 – “Still” single was released by Bill Anderson (Billboard no. 1 U.S. Hot Country Singles, 1963).

1964 – An unarmed United States Air Force T-39 Sabreliner on a training mission was shot down over Erfurt, East Germany, by a Soviet MiG-19.

1965 – The current design of the Flag of Canada was chosen by an act of Parliament.

1965 – “The Who” made their first appearance on British television program “Ready Steady Go!”

1967 – Rolling Stones released “Let’s Spend the Night Together”.

1973 – “Barnaby Jones” premiered on CBS.

1973 – Ron Howard appeared on M*A*S*H in “Sometimes You Hear the Bullet”.

1977 – The first day of the Great Lakes Blizzard of 1977, which dumped 10 feet of snow in one day in Upstate New York. Buffalo, Syracuse, Watertown, and surrounding areas were most affected.

1978 – Ted Nugent autographed a fan’s arm with his knife.

1980 – USCGC Blackthorn collided with the tanker Capricorn while leaving Tampa, Florida and capsized, killing 23 Coast Guard crewmembers.

1981 – Ronald Reagan lifted remaining domestic petroleum price and allocation controls in the United States, which helped to end the 1979 energy crisis and began the 1980s oil glut.

1982 – US Army general James L. Dozier was rescued by Italian anti-terrorism forces from captivity by the Red Brigades.

1985 – Supergroup USA for Africa (United Support of Artists for Africa) recorded the hit single We Are the World, to help raise funds for Ethiopian famine relief.

1986 – Space Shuttle Challenger disintegrated after liftoff which killed all seven astronauts on board.  Do you remember where you were?

2021 – A nitrogen leak at a poultry food processing facility in Gainesville, Georgia killed six and injured at least ten.

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