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Today in History for May 23, 2013

Today is Thursday, May 23, the 143rd day of 2013. There are 222 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight:

On May 23, 1934, bank robbers Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker were shot to death in a police ambush in Bienville Parish, La.

On this date:

In 1430, Joan of Arc was captured by the Burgundians, who sold her to the English.

In 1533, the marriage of England’s King Henry VIII to Catherine of Aragon was declared null and void.

In 1701, William Kidd was hanged in London after he was convicted of piracy and murder.

In 1788, South Carolina became the eighth state to ratify the United States Constitution.

In 1873, Canada’s Parliament voted to establish the North West Mounted Police force.

In 1911, the newly completed New York Public Library was dedicated by President William Howard Taft, Gov. John Alden Dix and Mayor William Jay Gaynor.

In 1937, industrialist and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller, founder of the Standard Oil Co. and the Rockefeller Foundation, died in Ormond Beach, Fla., at age 97.

In 1945, Nazi official Heinrich Himmler committed suicide while imprisoned in Luneburg, Germany.

In 1949, the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) was established.

In 1967, Egypt closed the Straits of Tiran to Israeli ships, an action which precipitated war between Israel and its Arab neighbors the following month.

In 1984, Surgeon General C. Everett Koop issued a report saying there was “very solid” evidence linking cigarette smoke to lung disease in non-smokers.

In 1993, a jury in Baton Rouge, La., acquitted Rodney Peairs of manslaughter in the shooting death of Yoshi Hattori, a Japanese exchange student he’d mistaken for an intruder. (Peairs was later found liable in a civil suit brought by Hattori’s parents.)

Ten years ago: By the narrowest of margins, Congress sent President George W. Bush the third tax cut of his presidency – a $330 billion package of rebates and lower rates for families and new breaks for businesses and investors. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon agreed to submit the U.S.-backed “road map” for peace to the Israeli Cabinet. Annika Sorenstam ended her historic appearance on the PGA tour in the Colonial with a 15-foot par putt, missing the cut by four strokes.

Five years ago: Hillary Rodham Clinton quickly apologized after citing the 1968 assassination of Robert F. Kennedy as a reason to remain in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination despite increasingly long odds. Televangelist John Hagee parted ways with John McCain following a storm over his endorsement of the Republican presidential candidate. (McCain rejected Hagee’s endorsement after an audio recording from the late 1990s surfaced in which the preacher suggested that God had sent Adolf Hitler to help Jews reach the promised land.) Myanmar’s rulers lifted a ban on foreign aid workers and commercial ships, but refused cyclone aid from U.S., French and British military ships.

One year ago: Egypt held the Arab world’s first competitive presidential vote (Islamist Mohammed Morsi was ultimately named the winner following a runoff). A Pakistani doctor who’d helped the CIA hunt down Osama bin Laden was convicted of conspiring against the state and was sentenced to 33 years in prison; U.S. officials had urged Pakistan to release Dr. Shakil Afridi. Phillip Phillips, a bluesy Georgia guitar man, was crowned the new “American Idol” after defeating teenager Jessica Sanchez.

Today’s birthdays: Bluegrass singer Mac Wiseman is 88. Actor Nigel Davenport is 85. Actress Barbara Barrie is 82. Actress Joan Collins is 80. Actor Charles Kimbrough is 77. Actress Lauren Chapin is 68. Country singer Misty Morgan is 68. Country singer Judy Rodman is 62. Singer Luka Bloom is 58. Actor-comedian Drew Carey is 55. Country singer Shelly West is 55. Actor Linden Ashby is 53. Actress-model Karen Duffy is 52. Actress Melissa McBride is 48. Rock musician Phil Selway (Radiohead) is 46. Actress Laurel Holloman is 45. Rock musician Matt Flynn (Maroon 5) is 43. Singer Lorenzo is 41. Country singer Brian McComas is 41. Singer Maxwell is 40. Singer Jewel is 39. Game show contestant Ken Jennings is 39. Actor Lane Garrison is 33. Actor Adam Wylie is 29.

Thought for today: “He who cannot rest, cannot work; he who cannot let go, cannot hold on; he who cannot find footing, cannot go forward.” — Henry Emerson Fosdick, American clergyman (1878-1969).

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

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