. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Today in History

Today is Thursday, Oct. 12, the 285th day of 2017. There are 80 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Oct. 12, 1492 (according to the Old Style calendar), Christopher Columbus’ expedition arrived in the present-day Bahamas.

On this date:

In 1792, the first recorded U.S. celebration of Columbus Day was held to mark the tricentennial of Christopher Columbus’ landing.

In 1810, the German festival Oktoberfest was first held in Munich to celebrate the wedding of Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen.

In 1915, English nurse Edith Cavell was executed by a German firing squad for helping Allied soldiers escape from occupied Belgium during World War I. Former President Theodore Roosevelt, speaking to the Knights of Columbus in New York, criticized native-born Americans who identified themselves by dual nationalities, saying that “a hyphenated American is not an American at all.”

In 1933, bank robber John Dillinger escaped from a jail in Allen County, Ohio, with the help of his gang, who killed the sheriff, Jess Sarber.

In 1942, during World War II, American naval forces defeated the Japanese in the Battle of Cape Esperance. Attorney General Francis Biddle announced during a Columbus Day celebration at Carnegie Hall in New York that Italian nationals in the United States would no longer be considered enemy aliens.

In 1957, the Dr. Seuss Yuletide tale “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” was first published by Random House.

In 1964, the Soviet Union launched a Voskhod space capsule with a three-man crew on the first mission involving more than one crew member (the flight lasted just over 24 hours).

In 1973, President Richard Nixon nominated House minority leader Gerald R. Ford of Michigan to succeed Spiro T. Agnew as vice president.

In 1984, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher escaped an attempt on her life when an Irish Republican Army bomb exploded at a hotel in Brighton, England, killing five people.

In 1997, singer John Denver was killed in the crash of his privately built aircraft in Monterey Bay, California; he was 53.

In 2000, 17 sailors were killed in a suicide bomb attack on the destroyer USS Cole in Yemen.

In 2002, bombs blamed on al-Qaida-linked militants destroyed a nightclub on the Indonesian island of Bali, killing 202 people, including 88 Australians and seven Americans.

Ten years ago: Former Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change won the Nobel Peace Prize for sounding the alarm over global warming.

Five years ago: Thousands of supporters and opponents of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi clashed in Cairo’s Tahrir Square in the first such violence since Morsi took office more than three months earlier. The European Union won the Nobel Peace Prize for fostering peace on a continent long ravaged by war.

One year ago: Wells Fargo announced that its embattled CEO, John Stumpf, was stepping down as the nation’s second-largest bank found itself roiled by a scandal over its sales practices.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Antonia Rey is 90. Former Sen. Jake Garn, R-Utah, is 85. Singer Sam Moore (formerly of Sam and Dave) is 82. Broadcast journalist Chris Wallace is 70. Actress-singer Susan Anton is 67. Rock singer-musician Pat DiNizio is 62. Pop/rock singer/songwriter Jane Siberry is 62. Actor Hiroyuki Sanada is 57. Actor Carlos Bernard is 55. Jazz musician Chris Botti (BOH’-tee) is 55. Rhythm-and-blues singer Claude McKnight (Take 6) is 55. Rock singer Bob Schneider is 52. Actor Hugh Jackman is 49. Actor Adam Rich is 49. Rhythm-and-blues singer Garfield Bright (Shai) is 48. Country musician Martie Maguire (Courtyard Hounds, The Dixie Chicks) is 48. Actor Kirk Cameron is 47. Olympic gold medal skier Bode Miller is 40. Rock singer Jordan Pundik (New Found Glory) is 38. Actor Brian J. Smith is 36. Actor Tyler Blackburn is 31. Actor Marcus T. Paulk is 31. Actor Josh Hutcherson is 25.

Thought for Today: “Christopher Columbus, as everyone knows, is honoured by posterity because he was the last to discover America.” — James Joyce, Irish author and poet (1882-1941).