1248May 15Archbishop Konrad von Hochstaden laid the cornerstone for Köln (Cologne) cathedral.
1536May 15Anna Boleyn and Lord Rochford were accused of adultery, incest, treason.
1591May 15Dimitri Ivanovitch (9), Russian son of czar Ivan IV, was murdered.
1610May 15Parliament of Paris appointed Louis XIII (8) as French king.
1614May 15An aristocratic uprising in France ended with the treaty of St. Menehould.
1618May 15Johannes Kepler discovered his harmonics law.
1665May 15Pope Alexander VII condemned Jansenism.
1672May 151st copyright law was enacted by Massachusetts.
1833May 15Edmund Kean (46), English actor (Shylock), died.
1842May 15Emanuel ADMJ Count de las Cases (76), French historian (Napoleon), died.
1862May 15The US Department of Agriculture was created.
1862May 15-17Battle of Princeton, WV.
1864May 15At Battle of New Market, Virginia, Military Institute cadets repelled a Union attack.
1878May 15The Tokyo Stock Exchange, Japan’s 1st public trading institution, formed.
1882May 15May Laws: Czar Alexander III banned Jews from living in rural Romania.
1891May 15Jules Massenet’s opera “Griselde,” premiered in Paris.
1896May 15A tornado killed 78 in Texas.
1912May 15Ty Cobb rushed a heckler at a NY Highlander game and was suspended.
1917May 15British Lt. John Harold Pritchard was killed in a nighttime battle at Bullecourt, France. This was during the two week 2nd battle of Bullecourt on the Hindenburg Line. Thousands of dead were scattered on both sides. In 2013 Pritchard’s body was found on a farm that covered the battleground.
1916May 15U.S. Marines landed in Santo Domingo to quell civil disorder.
1929May 15Fire in X-ray film stock killed 125 at Crile Clinic, Cleveland.
1933May 151st voice amplification system was used in US Senate.
1934May 15US Dept. of Justice offered $25,000 reward for John Dillinger, dead or alive.
1941May 15Nazi occupiers in Netherlands forbade Jewish music.
1942May 15Gasoline rationing went into effect in 17 states, limiting sales to 3 gallons a week for nonessential vehicles.
1943May 15Warsaw ghetto uprising ended in it’s destruction by Nazi-SS troops.
1952May 15Italo Montemezzi (76), composer, died.
1962May 15US marines “arrived” in Laos.
1963May 15Peter, Paul & Mary won their 1st Grammy (If I Had a Hammer).
1966May 15South Vietnamese army battled Buddhists and about 80 died.
1968May 15A tornado at Jonesboro, Arkansas, killed 34 people. Another near Anchorage, Alaska, killed one person.
1969May 15US Supreme Court Justice Abe Fortas resigned amid a controversy over his past legal fees.
1973May 15Robert MacNeil and Jim Lehrer teamed up on NPACT’s coverage of the Senate Watergate hearings. In 1975 the MacNeil-Lehrer Report” premiered on PBS.
1978May 15The US Supreme Court’s Santa Clara Pueblo vs. Martinez decision held that tribal enrollment issues are an Indian-only matter immune from outside interference.
1983May 15The Madison Hotel in Boston, Mass., was destroyed by implosion.
1984May 15Thomas Albright (48), art critic for the SF Chronicle, died. He had just completed his book “Art in the San Francisco Bay Area 1945-1980.”
1986May 15Searchers on Oregon’s Mount Hood found two teenage survivors of a hiking expedition that became trapped in a whiteout blizzard. Nine other climbers died.
1987May 15President Reagan told a gathering of out-of-town reporters at the White House he did not consider himself “mortally wounded” by the Iran-Contra affair.
1988May 15The Soviet Union began the process of withdrawing its 115,000 troops from Afghanistan, more than eight years after Soviet forces had entered the country.
1990May 15“Portrait of Doctor Gachet” (1890) by Vincent Van Gogh sold for $82.5 million to Ryoei Saito, Japan’s second-largest paper manufacturer.
1991May 15Simon and Schuster published “Nancy Reagan: The Unauthorized Biography” by Kitty Kelly. Review copies came out in April.
1992May 15A judge in Los Angeles ordered police officer Laurence Powell retried on a charge of excessive force in the beating of Rodney King. The charge was eventually dropped.
1993May 15Prairie Bayou won the Preakness.
1994May 15Supreme Court nominee Stephen G. Breyer arrived in Washington to spend the night at the White House, while Republicans joined Democrats in predicting swift Senate confirmation.
1995May 15Dow Corning Corporation filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, citing potentially astronomical expenses from liability lawsuits.
1996May 15An asteroid about a third of a mile across was detected and enroute to miss Earth by only 279,000 miles on 5/19/96. Timothy Spar and Carl Hergenrother discovered the asteroid and named it 1996 JA-1. It was traveling at 10 miles per second on a 4-year orbit around the sun.
1997May 15Attorney General Janet Reno requested the death penalty for Unabomber suspect Theodore Kaczynski. However, under an arrangement in which he admitted his guilt, Kaczynski later agreed to be sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.
1998May 15In Washington DC Latia Robinson (7) took control of a Honda Accord after her father passed out and drove him safely to a hospital at the beginning of rush hour.
1999May 15US warplanes attacked Iraqi air defense sites after being targeted by radar.
2000May 15By a five-to-four vote, the US Supreme Court threw out a key provision of the 1994 Violence Against Women Act, saying that rape victims could not sue their attackers in federal court.
2001May 15The US government issued new guidelines for managing high cholesterol.
2002May 15The White House acknowledged that in the weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks, President Bush was told by U.S. intelligence that Osama bin Laden’s terrorist network might hijack American airplanes, but that officials did not know that suicide hijackers were plotting to use planes as missiles.
2003May 15China threatened possible execution or jail sentences for people who cause death or injury by deliberately spreading SARS.
2004May 15Smarty Jones won the Preakness by a record 11 1/2 lengths.
2005May 15Algerian Islamic militants with alleged links to al Qaeda killed 11 soldiers in the worst attack on government troops in months.
2006May 15Indonesia’s Mount Merapi erupted violently, sending searing gas clouds and burning rocks down its scorched flanks and threatening villagers who refused to leave because of ancient mystical beliefs.
2007May 15PM Bertie Ahern became the first Irish leader to address the joint houses of the British Parliament.
2008May 15Will Elder (b.1921), founding artist at Mad Magazine (1952), died. After Mad he established himself at Playboy where he produced the “Little Annie Fanny” cartoon.
2009May 15Lakhdar Boumediene (43), a Guantanamo Bay prisoner who was at the center of a Supreme Court battle over inmates’ rights, arrived in France, which agreed to take in the Algerian in a gesture to the Obama administration.
2010May 15In Brazil a fire destroyed what may be the world’s largest scientific collection of dead snakes, spiders and scorpions. The Instituto Butantan’s collection of nearly 80,000 specimens was the main source for research on thousands of species.
2011May 15San Francisco celebrated the 100th anniversary of its 7.46 mile Bay to Breakers race. Organizer’s hired guards to confiscate alcohol and banned iconic floats.
2012May 15In Florida Tonya Thomas (33) fatally shot her four children, ages 12-17, and then killed herself in Port St. John.
2013May 15Pres. Obama announced the resignation of Steven Miller, acting com missioner of the IRS. US Attorney General Eric Holder promised angry lawmakers that the Justice Department will undertake a national investigation into the IRS wrongdoing. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew forced out Steven Miller. A Treasury Department Inspector General’s report had detailed how the IRS in 2010 had targeted conservative groups for special scrutiny when they applied for tax-exempt status.
2014May 15A US federal judge upheld registration requirements that are part of gun laws in Washington DC.

Source: Timelines of History


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