Today in History


Today is Tuesday, April 25, the 115th day of 2023. There are 250 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlights in History:

On April 25, 1945, during World War II, U.S. and Soviet forces linked up on the Elbe (EL’-beh) River, a meeting that dramatized the collapse of Nazi Germany’s defenses.

On this date:

In 404 B.C., the Peloponnesian War ended as Athens surrendered to Sparta.

In 1507, a world map produced by German cartographer Martin Waldseemueller contained the first recorded use of the term “America,” in honor of Italian navigator Amerigo Vespucci (veh-SPOO’-chee).

In 1859, ground was broken for the Suez Canal.

In 1862, during the Civil War, a Union fleet commanded by Flag Officer David G. Farragut captured the city of New Orleans.

In 1898, the United States Congress declared war on Spain; the 10-week conflict resulted in an American victory.

In 1901, New York Gov. Benjamin Barker Odell, Jr. signed an automobile registration bill which imposed a 15 mph speed limit on highways.

In 1915, during World War I, Allied soldiers invaded the Gallipoli (guh-LIH’-puh-lee) Peninsula in an unsuccessful attempt to take the Ottoman Empire out of the war.

In 1945, delegates from some 50 countries gathered in San Francisco to organize the United Nations.

In 1990, the Hubble Space Telescope was deployed in orbit from the space shuttle Discovery. (It was later discovered that the telescope’s primary mirror was flawed, requiring the installation of corrective components to achieve optimal focus.)

In 1992, Islamic forces in Afghanistan took control of most of the capital of Kabul following the collapse of the Communist government.

In 2002, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes of the Grammy-winning trio TLC died in an SUV crash in Honduras; she was 30.

In 2019, former Vice President Joe Biden entered the Democratic presidential race, declaring the fight against Donald Trump to be a “battle for the soul of this nation.”

Ten years ago: President Barack Obama consoled a rural Texas community rocked by a deadly fertilizer plant explosion that killed 15 people, telling mourners during a memorial service at Baylor University they were not alone in their grief. Obama also joined his four living predecessors to dedicate the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas. Reggaeton star Don Omar was the top winner of the Billboard Latin Music Awards in Coral Gables, Florida, taking home 10 prizes.

Five years ago: Ford Motor Co. said it would get rid of most of its North American car lineup as part of a broad plan to save money and make the company more competitive; the Mustang sports car and a compact Focus crossover vehicle would be the only cars sold in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Danish engineer Peter Madsen was convicted of murder for luring a Swedish journalist onto his homemade submarine before torturing and killing her; Madsen was later sentenced to life in prison.

One year ago: Russia unleashed a string of attacks against rail and fuel installations deep inside Ukraine, far from the front lines of Moscow’s new eastern offensive, in a bid to thwart Ukrainian efforts to marshal supplies for the fight. The U.S. moved to rush more weaponry to Ukraine and said the assistance from the Western allies was making a difference in the 2-month-old war. Elon Musk reached an agreement to buy Twitter for roughly $44 billion, promising a more lenient touch to policing content on the social media platform where he — then the world’s richest person — had made a habit of promoting his interests and attacking his critics to his tens of millions of followers.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor Al Pacino is 83. Ballroom dance judge Len Goodman (TV: “Dancing with the Stars”) is 79. Rock musician Stu Cook (Creedence Clearwater Revival) is 78. Singer Bjorn Ulvaeus (ABBA) is 78. Actor Talia Shire is 78. Actor Jeffrey DeMunn is 76. Rock musician Steve Ferrone (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers) is 73. Country singer-songwriter Rob Crosby is 69. Actor Hank Azaria is 59. Rock singer Andy Bell (Erasure) is 59. Rock musician Eric Avery (Jane’s Addiction) is 58. Country musician Rory Feek (Joey + Rory) is 58. TV personality Jane Clayson is 56. Actor Renee Zellweger is 54. Actor Gina Torres is 54. Actor Jason Lee is 53. Actor Jason Wiles is 53. Actor Emily Bergl is 48. Actor Marguerite Moreau is 46. Actor Melonie Diaz is 39. Actor Sara Paxton is 35. Actor/producer Allisyn Snyder is 27. Actor Jayden Rey is 14.

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