On July 19, 1985, Christa McAuliffe of New Hampshire was chosen to be the first schoolteacher to ride aboard the space shuttle. (McAuliffe and six other crew members died when the Challenger exploded shortly after liftoff in January 1986.)
On this date:
In 1553, King Henry VIII’s daughter Mary was proclaimed Queen of England after pretender Lady Jane Grey was deposed.
In 1848, a pioneer women’s rights convention convened in Seneca Falls, New York.
In 1903, the first Tour de France was won by Maurice Garin.
In 1944, the Democratic national convention convened in Chicago with the renomination of President Franklin D. Roosevelt considered a certainty.
In 1952, the Summer Olympics opened in Helsinki, Finland.
In 1965, the first president of South Korea, Syngman Rhee, died in Honolulu.
In 1975, the Apollo and Soyuz space capsules that were linked in orbit for two days separated.
In 1979, the Nicaraguan capital of Managua fell to Sandinista guerrillas, two days after President Anastasio Somoza fled the country.
In 1980, the Moscow Summer Olympics began, minus dozens of nations that were boycotting the games because of the Soviet military intervention in Afghanistan.
In 1984, U.S. Rep. Geraldine A. Ferraro of New York won the Democratic nomination for vice president by acclamation at the party’s convention in San Francisco.
In 1989, 111 people were killed when United Air Lines Flight 232, a DC-10 which suffered the uncontained failure of its tail engine and the loss of hydraulic systems, crashed while making an emergency landing at Sioux City, Iowa; 185 other people survived.
In 1990, President George H.W. Bush joined former presidents Ronald Reagan, Gerald R. Ford and Richard M. Nixon at ceremonies dedicating the Nixon Library and Birthplace (since redesignated the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum) in Yorba Linda, California.
Ten years ago: President George W. Bush announced his choice of federal appeals court judge John G. Roberts Jr. to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. (Roberts ended up succeeding Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, who died in September 2005; Samuel Alito followed O’Connor.)
Five years ago: The Agriculture Department pressured Shirley Sherrod, an administrator in Georgia, to resign after a conservative website posted video it claimed showed her making racist remarks. (After reviewing the entire video, the White House ended up apologizing to Sherrod.) A train slammed into another at a station north of Calcutta, India, killing at least 63 people. Australian David Warren, who’d invented the “black box” flight data recorder, died in Melbourne at age 85.
One year ago: A New York City police officer involved in the arrest of Eric Garner, who died in custody two days earlier after being placed in an apparent chokehold, was stripped of his gun and badge and placed on desk duty. Actor James Garner, 86, died in Los Angeles.