By The Associated Press
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 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.
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