Today in History – June 3

350 – The Roman usurper Nepotianus, of the Constantinian dynasty, proclaimed himself Roman emperor, and entered Rome at the head of a group of gladiators.

1098 – After a five-month siege during the First Crusade, the Crusaders seized Antioch (today’s Turkey).

1539 – Hernando de Soto claimed Florida for Spain.

1608 – Samuel de Champlain landed at Tadoussac, Quebec, in the course of his third voyage to New France, and began erecting fortifications.

1665 – James Stuart, Duke of York (later to become King James II of England), defeated the Dutch fleet off the coast of Lowestoft.

1781 – Jack Jouett began his midnight ride to warn Thomas Jefferson and the Virginia legislature of an impending raid by Banastre Tarleton.

1861 – American Civil War: Battle of Philippi (also called the Philippi Races): Union forces routed Confederate troops in Barbour County, Virginia, now West Virginia.

1864 – American Civil War: Battle of Cold Harbor: Union forces attacked Confederate troops in Hanover County, Virginia.

1866 – The Fenians were driven out of Fort Erie, Ontario back into the United States.

1871 – Jesse James and his gang robbed Obocock Bank (Corydon Iowa), of $15,000.

1889 – The first long-distance electric power transmission line in the United States was completed which ran 14 miles between a generator at Willamette Falls and downtown Portland, Oregon.

1916 – The National Defense Act was signed into law which increasing the size of the United States National Guard by 450,000 men.

1937 – The Duke of Windsor, former king of England, married Wallis Simpson.

1939 – “Beer Barrel Polka” by Will Glahe hit #1 on the pop singles chart.

1940 – World War II: The Luftwaffe bombed Paris.

1940 – World War II: The Battle of Dunkirk ended with a German victory and with Allied forces in full retreat.

1941 – World War II: The Wehrmacht razed the Greek village of Kandanos to the ground and murdered 180 of its inhabitants.

1942 – World War II: Japan began the Aleutian Islands Campaign by bombing Unalaska Island.

1943 – In Los Angeles, California, white U.S. Navy sailors and Marines attacked Latino youths in the five-day Zoot Suit Riots.

1946 – The first bikini bathing suit was displayed in Paris.

1962 – At Paris Orly Airport, Air France Flight 007 overran the runway and exploded when the crew attempted to abort takeoff, killing 130.

1964 – Ringo Starr collapsed from tonsillitis and pharyngitis.

1965 – The launch of Gemini 4, the first multi-day space mission by a NASA crew. Ed White, a crew member, performed the first American spacewalk.

1967 – Aretha Franklin’s cover of the Otis Redding song “Respect” reached #1.

1968 – American radical feminist Valerie Solanas attempted to assassinate Andy Warhol by shooting him three times. She was later diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, pled guilty to “reckless assault with intent to harm”, and served a 3-year sentence.

1969 – Melbourne–Evans collision: off the coast of South Vietnam, the Australian aircraft carrier HMAS Melbourne cut the U.S. Navy destroyer USS Frank E. Evans in half; resulting in 74 deaths.

1969 – The last episode of Star Trek aired on NBC (Turnabout Intruder).

1972 – “Hot Rod Lincoln” by Commander Cody & His Lost Planet Airmen hit #9.

1976 – Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” went gold (sold at least 500,000 units).

1976 – US presented with oldest known copy of Magna Carta.

1979 – A blowout at the Ixtoc I oil well in the southern Gulf of Mexico caused at least 3,000,000 barrels of oil to be spilled into the waters, the second-worst accidental oil spill ever recorded.

1980 – An explosive device was detonated at the Statue of Liberty. The FBI suspected Croatian nationalists.

1980 – The 1980 Grand Island tornado outbreak hit Nebraska and caused five deaths and $300 million worth of damage.

1981 – Pope John Paul II was released from the hospital after an assassination attempt.

1983 – Drummer Jim Gordon murdered his mother, Osa Marie Gordon, in North Hollywood, California.  He played drums for Derek and the Dominos, Joe Cocker, Harry Nilsson, Incredible Bongo Band, Frank Zappa, Helen Reddy, Johnny Rivers, Art Garfunkel, Steely Dan, and a host of others.

1988 – “Big” film directed by Penny Marshall, starring Tom Hanks, premiered in the US.

2012 – The pageant for the Diamond Jubilee of Elizabeth II took place on the River Thames.

2013 – The trial of United States Army private Chelsea Manning for leaking classified material to WikiLeaks began in Fort Meade, Maryland.

2017 – London Bridge attack: Eight people were murdered and dozens of civilians were wounded by Islamist terrorists. Three of the attackers were shot dead by the police.

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