This day in History....

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      On this day in 1978, boxer Muhammad Ali defeats Leon Spinks at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans to win the world heavyweight boxing title for the third time in his career, the first fighter ever to do so. Following his victory, Ali retired from boxing, only to make a brief comeback two years later. Ali, who once claimed he could "float like a butterfly, sting like a bee," left the sport permanently in 1981.




      A commuter train plunges off a bridge into Newark Bay in New Jersey killing 47 passengers on this day in 1958. The accident was the result of mistakes made by the train’s crew



      During the Battle of the Somme, the British launch a major offensive against the Germans, employing tanks for the first time in history. At Flers Courcelette, some of the 40 or so primitive tanks advanced over a mile into enemy lines but were too slow to hold their positions during the German counterattack and subject to mechanical breakdown. However, General Douglas Haig, commander of Allied forces at the Somme, saw the promise of this new instrument of war and ordered the war department to produce hundreds more





      On this day in 1963, a bomb explodes during Sunday morning services in the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, killing four young girls.




      The famous picture of Marilyn Monroe, laughing as her skirt is blown up by the blast from a subway vent, is shot on this day in 1954 during the filming of The Seven Year Itch. The scene infuriated her husband, Joe DiMaggio, who felt it was exhibitionist, and the couple divorced shortly afterward




      On September 15, 1931, the Philadelphia Athletics beat the Cleveland Indians to clinch their third consecutive American League pennant. The win was the ninth and final American League championship of legendary manager Connie Mack’s storied career.



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      In 1836, in San Antonio, Texas, Colonel William Travis issues a call for help on behalf of the Texan troops defending the Alamo.

      Alain Prost, the four-time Formula One champ, is born on February 24, 1955, near Saint-Chamond, France.

      Ronald Reagan announces a new program of economic and military assistance to nations of the Caribbean designed to "prevent the overthrow of the governments in the region" by the "brutal and totalitarian" forces of communism.

      A massive avalanche in the Austrian Alps buries homes and kills 13 people in Valzur on this day in 1999. The avalanche came only one day after an avalanche in the neighboring village of Galtur killed 25 people.

      After six weeks of intensive bombing against Iraq and its armed forces, U.S.-led coalition forces launch a ground invasion of Kuwait and Iraq.

      On February 24, 1982, Wayne Gretzky scores his 77th goal, breaking a record held by Phil Esposito of 76 goals in a single season that was previously thought unbeatable by many fans.

      The U.S. House of Representatives votes 11 articles of impeachment against President Andrew Johnson. The House vote made President Johnson the first president to be impeached in U.S. history.

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