Today’s Highlight in History:
On May 2, 1994: Nelson Mandela claimed victory in the wake of South Africa’s first democratic elections; President F.W. de Klerk acknowledged defeat.
On this date:
In 1863: During the Civil War, Confederate Gen. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson was accidentally wounded by his own men at Chancellorsville, Virginia; he died eight days later.
In 1890: The Oklahoma Territory was organized.
In 1927: The U.S. Supreme Court, in Buck v. Bell, upheld 8-1 a Virginia law allowing the forced sterilization of people to promote the “health of the patient and the welfare of society.”
In 1932: Jack Benny’s first radio show, sponsored by Canada Dry, made its debut on the NBC Blue Network.
In 1941: General Mills began shipping its new cereal, “Cheerioats,” to six test markets. (The cereal was later renamed “Cheerios.”)
In 1970: Jockey Diane Crump became the first woman to ride in the Kentucky Derby; she finished in 15th place aboard Fathom. (The winning horse was Dust Commander.)
In 1972: A fire at the Sunshine silver mine in Kellogg, Idaho, claimed the lives of 91 workers who succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning. Longtime FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover died in Washington at age 77.
In 1997: Tony Blair, whose new Labour Party crushed John Major’s long-reigning Conservatives in a national election, became at age 43 Britain’s youngest prime minister in 185 years.
In 2005: Pfc. Lynndie England, the young woman pictured in some of the most notorious Abu Ghraib photos, pleaded guilty at Fort Hood, Texas, to mistreating prisoners. (A judge later threw out the plea agreement; England was then convicted in a court-martial and received a three-year sentence, of which she served half.)
In 2010: Record rains and flash floods in Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee caused more than 30 deaths and submerged the Grand Ole Opry House stage.
In 2011: Al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, who'd been killed hours earlier in a raid by elite American forces at his Pakistan compound, was buried at sea.
In 2018: The Boy Scouts of America announced that the group’s flagship program would undergo a name change; after being known simply as the Boy Scouts for 108 years, the program would now be called Scouts BSA. (The change came as girls were about to enter the ranks.)
Ten years ago: Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich formally exited the Republican presidential contest. Taliban insurgents attacked a compound housing foreigners in the Afghan capital, killing seven people, hours after President Barack Obama made a surprise visit. Opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi (ahng sahn soo chee) was sworn in to Myanmar’s military-backed parliament. Former NFL star Junior Seau (SAY’-ow) was found shot to death at his home in Oceanside, California, a suicide.
Five years ago: Michael Slager, a white former police officer whose killing of Walter Scott, an unarmed Black man running from a traffic stop, was captured on cellphone video, pleaded guilty to federal civil rights charges in Charleston, South Carolina. (Slager was sentenced to 20 years in prison.)
One year ago: SpaceX safely returned four astronauts from the International Space Station, making the first U.S. crew splashdown in darkness since the Apollo 8 moonshot. Jacques d’Amboise, who became one of the top male dancers at New York City Ballet and then spent more than four decades providing free dance education to countless youngsters, died at his New York home from complications of a stroke; he was 86. Three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Bobby Unser died at his New Mexico home at 87.