Almanac

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Saturday, May 13, the 133rd day of 2017. There are 232 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On May 13, 1917, three shepherd children, Lucia de Jesus dos Santos and two of her cousins, Jacinta and Francisco Marto, reported seeing a vision of the Virgin Mary near Fatima, Portugal; it was the first of six such apparitions that the children claimed to have witnessed.

On this date:

In 1607, English colonists arrived by ship at the site of what became the Jamestown settlement in Virginia (the colonists went ashore the next day).

In 1846, the United States declared that a state of war already existed with Mexico.

In 1918, the first U.S. airmail stamps, featuring a picture of a Curtiss JN-4 biplane, were issued to the public. (On a few of the stamps, the biplane was inadvertently printed upside-down, making them collector’s items.)

In 1935, T.E. Lawrence, who earned international fame as Lawrence of Arabia, was critically injured in a motorcycle accident in Dorset, England; he died six days later.

In 1940, in his first speech as British prime minister, Winston Churchill told Parliament, “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat.”

In 1958, Vice President Richard Nixon and his wife, Pat, were spat upon and their limousine battered by rocks thrown by anti-U.S. demonstrators in Caracas, Venezuela.

In 1967, a vault fire at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in Culver City, California, destroyed hundreds of the studio’s early films. The Scott McKenzie single “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” was released.

In 1973, in tennis’ first so-called “Battle of the Sexes,” Bobby Riggs defeated Margaret Court 6-2, 6-1 in Ramona, California. (Billie Jean King soundly defeated Riggs at the Houston Astrodome in September.)

In 1981, Pope John Paul II was shot and seriously wounded in St. Peter’s Square by Turkish assailant Mehmet Ali Agca (MEH’-met AH’-lee AH’-juh).

In 1985, a confrontation between Philadelphia authorities and the radical group MOVE ended as police dropped a bomb onto the group’s row house; 11 people died in the resulting fire that destroyed 61 homes.

In 1992, the Falun Gong movement had its beginnings in the northeastern Chinese city of Changchun.

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