Highlight in History
On June 16, 1944, George Stinney, a 14-year-old black youth, became the youngest person to die in the electric chair as the state of South Carolina executed him for the murders of two white girls, Betty June Binnicker, 11, and Mary Emma Thames, 7. (George Stinney’s family, who maintains his innocence, is seeking to overturn his conviction.)
On this date
In 1567, Mary, Queen of Scots, was imprisoned in Lochleven Castle in Scotland. (She escaped almost a year later but ended up imprisoned again.)
In 1858, accepting the Illinois Republican Party’s nomination for the U.S. Senate, Abraham Lincoln said the slavery issue had to be resolved, declaring, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”
In 1883, baseball’s first “Ladies’ Day” took place as the New York Gothams offered women free admission to a game against the Cleveland Spiders. (New York won, 5-2.)
In 1903, Ford Motor Co. was incorporated.
In 1911, IBM had its beginnings as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co. was incorporated in New York State.
In 1933, the National Industrial Recovery Act became law with President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s signature. (The Act was later struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court.) The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. was founded as President Roosevelt signed the Banking Act of 1933.
In 1943, comedian Charles Chaplin, 54, married his fourth wife, 18-year-old Oona O’Neill, daughter of playwright Eugene O’Neill, in Carpinteria, California.
In 1959, actor George Reeves, TV’s “Superman,” was found dead of an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound in the bedroom of his Beverly Hills, California, home; he was 45.
In 1963, the world’s first female space traveler, Valentina Tereshkova, 26, was launched into orbit by the Soviet Union aboard Vostok 6; she spent 71 hours in flight, circling the Earth 48 times before returning safely.
In 1978, President Jimmy Carter and Panamanian leader Omar Torrijos exchanged the instruments of ratification for the Panama Canal treaties.
In 1987, a jury in New York acquitted Bernhard Goetz of attempted murder in the subway shooting of four youths he said were going to rob him; however, Goetz was convicted of illegal weapons possession. (In 1996, a civil jury ordered Goetz to pay $43 million to one of the persons he’d shot.)
In 1999, Vice President Al Gore formally opened his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination. Kathleen Ann Soliah, a fugitive member of the Symbionese Liberation Army, was captured in St. Paul, Minnesota, where she had made a new life under the name Sara Jane Olson. Thabo Mbeki took the oath as president of South Africa, succeeding Nelson Mandela.