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News, Events, Birthdays, History - May 14 - May 20

Birthdays

George Lucas - May 14, 1944 
Lucas is Indiana Jonesan Academy Award-nominated American film producer, screenwriter, director and chairman of Lucasfilm Ltd. He is best known for being the creator of the epic Sci-Fi franchise Star Wars and the archaeologist-adventurer character Indiana Jones. Today, Lucas is one of the American film industry's most financially successful independent directors/producers, with an estimated net worth of $3.9 billion.

Reggie Jackson - May 18, 1946
Reginald Martinez "Reggie" Jackson (born May 18, 1946), nicknamed "Mr. October" for his clutch hitting in the postseason, is an American former Major League Baseball right fielder who played for five different teams from 1967 to 1987. He won three consecutive World Series titles as a member of the Oakland A's in the early 1970s and also won two consecutive titles with the New York Yankees. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1993.



Events

May 14, 1804 - Lewis and Clark Expedition Begins
Captain Meriwether Lewis and Lieutenant William Clark Lewis and Clarkleft St. Louis on this day with the goal of finding a passable route to the Pacific. In 1803, the Louisiana Purchase sparked interest in expansion to the west coast. The United States did not know just what it was buying, and even France was unsure how much land it was selling. A few weeks after the purchase, President Thomas Jefferson, an advocate of western expansion, had Congress appropriate $2,500 for an expedition.
Lewis and Clark arrived at the Pacific coast of Oregon in November of 1805, and would return to St. Louis over two years later, in September of 1806.

May 15, 1972 - George Wallace Shot
Former governor of Alabama and a symbol of racial segregation, Wallace was shot four times by Arthur Bremer while campaigning for President in Laurel, Maryland, on May 15, 1972.  For the remaining 16 years of his life, Wallace was paralyzed from the waist down.  Following the shooting, Wallace won primaries in Maryland, Michigan, Tennessee, and North Carolina. From his wheelchair, Wallace spoke at the Democratic National Convention in Miami on July 11, 1972.   Bremer was sentenced to 67 years in prison.
 
May 16, 1929 - First Academy Awards
Eighty years ago on this date in Hollywood the first Academy Awards were given out in 12 categories.  Decisions were made by a committee of only 20 members, whereas in later years the entire Academy membership would participate in voting.  The best picture?  A silent film called Wings.

May 17, 1954 - Brown vs. Board of Education Decision
This landmark decision of the United States Supreme Court overturned earlier rulings going back to 1896 by declaring that state laws that established separate public schools for black and white students denied black children equal educational opportunities. The unanimous (9-0) decision stated that "separate educational facilities are inherently unequal." As a result, racial segregation was ruled a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution. This victory paved the way for integration and the civil rights movement

May 17, 1792 - New York Stock Exchange Established
The origin of the NYSE can be traced to May 17, 1792, when the Buttonwood Agreement was signed by 24 stock brokers outside of 68 Wall Street in New York under a buttonwood tree on Wall Street. On March 8, 1817, the organization drafted a constitution and renamed itself the "New York Stock & Exchange Board".

May 19, 1780 - New England's Dark Day
New England's Dark Day refers to an event which occurred on 19 May 1780, when an unusual darkening of the day sky was observed over the New England states and parts of Canada. The primary cause of the event is believed to have been a combination of smoke from forest fires, a thick fog, and cloud cover. The darkness was so complete that candles were required from noon until midnight and did not disperse until the middle of the next night.

May 20, 1932 - Amelia Earhart Atlantic Crossing
Amelia EarhartAt the age of 34, on the morning of May 20, 1932  Earhart set off from Harbour Grace, Newfoundland with the latest copy of a local newspaper (the dated copy was intended to confirm the date of the flight). She intended to fly to Paris in her single engine Lockheed Vega.  After a flight lasting 14 hours, 56 minutes during which she contended with strong northerly winds, icy conditions and mechanical problems, Earhart landed in a pasture at Culmore, north of Derry, Northern Ireland.  When a farm hand asked, "Have you flown far?" Amelia replied, "From America."