By The Associated Press
Today in History
Today is Tuesday, June 15, the 166th day of 2021. There are 199 days left in the year.
Todayís Highlight in History:
On June 15, 1215, Englandís King John put his seal to Magna Carta (ìthe Great Charterî) at Runnymede.
On this date:
In 1775, the Second Continental Congress voted unanimously to appoint George Washington head of the Continental Army.
In 1864, Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton signed an order establishing a military burial ground which became Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.
In 1902, the 20th Century Limited, an express passenger train between New York and Chicago, began service. (The Limited made its last run in December 1967.)
In 1904, more than 1,000 people died when fire erupted aboard the steamboat General Slocum in New Yorkís East River.
In 1934, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed an act making the National Guard part of the U.S. Army in the event of war or national emergency.
In 1944, American forces began their successful invasion of Saipan (sy-PANí) during World War II. B-29 Superfortresses carried out their first raids on Japan.
In 1955, the United States and Britain signed a cooperation agreement concerning atomic information for ìmutual defence purposes.î
In 1985, the Shiite Muslim hijackers of a TWA Boeing 727 beat and shot one of their hostages, U.S. Navy diver Robert Stethem (STEEí-them), 23, throwing him out of the plane to die on the tarmac at Beirut airport.
In 1988, the baseball romantic comedy ìBull Durham,î starring Kevin Costner and Susan Sarandon, was released by Orion Pictures. In 1991, Mount Pinatubo in the northern Philippines exploded in one of the biggest volcanic eruptions of the 20th century, killing about 800 people.
In 1996, Ella Fitzgerald, the ìfirst lady of song,î died in Beverly Hills, California, at age 79. In 2003, with a deadline passed for Iraqis to hand in heavy weapons, U.S. forces fanned out across Iraq to seize arms and put down potential foes.
Ten years ago: Pushing back against congressional criticism, the White House said that President Barack Obama had the authority to continue U.S. military action in Libya even without authorization from lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was released from a Houston hospital, five months after being shot in the head during a Tucson political event. The Boston Bruins won the Stanley Cup for the first time since 1972, beating the Vancouver Canucks 4-0 in Game 7 of the finals; angry, drunken Vancouver fans ran wild, setting cars on fire and looting stores.