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June 11, 2013

Today in History for Tuesday, June 11, 2013

-- — Highlights in History

On June 11, 1963, in one of the most shocking images of the Vietnam War era, a Buddhist monk, Thich Quang Duc, set himself afire on a Saigon street to protest the government of South Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem. (The scene was captured in a Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph taken by Malcolm Browne of The Associated Press.)

On this date

In 1509, England’s King Henry VIII married his first wife, Catherine.

In 1770, Captain James Cook, commander of the British ship Endeavour, discovered the Great Barrier Reef off Australia by running onto it.

In 1776, the Continental Congress formed a committee to draft a Declaration of Independence calling for freedom from Britain.

In 1913, football coach Vince Lombardi and opera singer Rise Stevens were born in New York City.

In 1919, Sir Barton won the Belmont Stakes, becoming horse racing’s first Triple Crown winner.

In 1938, Johnny Vander Meer pitched the first of two consecutive no-hitters as he led the Cincinnati Reds to a 3-0 victory over the Boston Bees. (Four days later, Vander Meer refused to give up a hit to the Brooklyn Dodgers, who lost, 6-0.)

In 1942, the United States and the Soviet Union signed a lend-lease agreement to aid the Soviet war effort in World War II.

In 1962, three prisoners at Alcatraz in San Francisco Bay staged an escape, leaving the island on a makeshift raft; they were never found or heard from again.

In 1971, the year-and-a-half-long occupation of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay by American Indian activists ended as federal officers evicted the remaining protesters.

In 1977, Seattle Slew won the Belmont Stakes, capturing the Triple Crown.

In 1987, Margaret Thatcher became the first British prime minister in 160 years to win a third consecutive term of office as her Conservatives held onto a reduced majority in Parliament.

In 1993, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that people who commit “hate crimes” motivated by bigotry may be sentenced to extra punishment; the court also ruled religious groups had a constitutional right to sacrifice animals in worship services.

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