Today in History 10/10


Today is Wednesday, Oct. 10, the 284th day of 2012. There are 82 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Oct. 10, 1962, President John F. Kennedy, responding to the Thalidomide birth defects crisis, signed an amendment to the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act requiring pharmaceutical companies to prove that their products were safe and effective prior to marketing.

On this date:

• In 1845, the U.S. Naval Academy was established in Annapolis, Md.

• In 1911, Chinese revolutionaries launched an uprising which led to the collapse of the Qing (or Manchu) Dynasty and the establishment of the Republic of China.

• In 1913, the Panama Canal was effectively completed as President Woodrow Wilson sent a signal from the White House by telegraph, setting off explosives that destroyed a section of the Gamboa dike.

• In 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower apologized to the finance minister of Ghana, Komla Agbeli Gbdemah, after the official was refused seating in a Howard Johnson’s restaurant near Dover, Del.

• In 1967, the Outer Space Treaty, prohibiting the placing of weapons of mass destruction on the moon or elsewhere in space, entered into force.

• In 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew, accused of accepting bribes, pleaded no contest to one count of federal income tax evasion, and resigned his office.

• In 1982, Father Maximilian Kolbe, who died in the Auschwitz Nazi concentration camp, was canonized by Pope John Paul II.

• In 1985, U.S. fighter jets forced an Egyptian plane carrying the hijackers of the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro to land in Italy, where the gunmen were taken into custody.

Today’s Birthdays:

Actor Peter Coyote is 71. Entertainer Ben Vereen is 66. Rock singer-musician Cyril Neville (The Neville Brothers) is 64. Actress Jessica Harper is 63. Rock singer David Lee Roth is 58. Country singer Tanya Tucker is 54. Actress Julia Sweeney is 53. Actor Bradley Whitford is 53. Actress Rebecca Pidgeon is 47. Former NFL quarterback Brett Favre is 43. Race driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. is 38. Actress Jodi Lyn O’Keefe is 34. Singer Mya is 33. Actress Aimee Teegarden is 23.