Today in History

Today is Sunday, May 1, the 122nd day of 2016. There are 244 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On May 1, 1866, three days of race-related rioting erupted in Memphis, Tennessee, as white mobs targeted blacks, 46 of whom were killed, along with two whites. (The violence spurred passage of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution defining American citizenship and equal protection under the law.)

On this date:

In 1707, the Kingdom of Great Britain was created as a treaty merging England and Scotland took effect.

In 1786, Mozart's opera "The Marriage of Figaro" premiered in Vienna.

In 1898, Commodore George Dewey gave the command, "You may fire when you are ready, Gridley," as an American naval force destroyed a Spanish squadron in Manila Bay during the Spanish-American War.

In 1915, during World War I, a German submarine torpedoed and severely damaged the SS Gulflight, an American tanker near Britain's Scilly Isles, even though the United States was still neutral in the conflict.

In 1931, New York's 102-story Empire State Building was dedicated. Singer Kate Smith made her debut on CBS Radio on her 24th birthday.

In 1941, the Orson Welles motion picture "Citizen Kane" premiered in New York.

In 1945, a day after Adolf Hitler took his life, Admiral Karl Doenitz effectively became sole leader of the Third Reich with the suicide of Hitler's propaganda minister, Josef Goebbels.

In 1960, the Soviet Union shot down an American U-2 reconnaissance plane over Sverdlovsk and captured its pilot, Francis Gary Powers.

In 1963, James W. Whittaker became the first American to conquer Mount Everest as he and Sherpa guide Nawang Gombu reached the summit.

In 1975, Hank Aaron of the Milwaukee Brewers broke baseball's all-time RBI record previously held by Babe Ruth during a game against the Detroit Tigers (Milwaukee won, 17-3).

In 1982, the World's Fair in Knoxville, Tennessee, was opened by President Ronald Reagan.

In 1991, Nolan Ryan of the Texas Rangers threw his seventh no-hitter at age 44, shutting out the Toronto Blue Jays 3-0. Rickey Henderson of the Oakland A's set a major league record by stealing his 939th base during a game against the New York Yankees.

Ten years ago: Hundreds of thousands of mostly Hispanic immigrants in the U.S. skipped work and took to the streets, flexing their economic muscle in a nationwide boycott. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Anna Nicole Smith could pursue part of the oil fortune of her late husband, J. Howard Marshall. (Smith died in 2007; neither she nor her estate ever saw any of the money.) Bolivian President Evo Morales (eh-VOH' mohr-AHL'-ays) nationalized the country's vast natural gas industry.

Five years ago: President Barack Obama announced the death of Osama bin Laden during a U.S. commando operation (because of the time difference, it was early May 2 in Pakistan, where the al-Qaida leader met his end). Pope Benedict XVI beatified Pope John Paul II, moving his predecessor a step closer to sainthood in a Vatican Mass attended by some 1.5 million pilgrims. Marchers around the world demanded more jobs, better working conditions and higher wages on International Workers' Day.

One year ago: Baltimore's top prosecutor charged six police officers with felonies ranging from assault to murder in the death of Freddie Gray, who'd suffered a spinal injury while riding in a police van. Actress Grace Lee Whitney, who played Captain Kirk's assistant, Yeoman Janice Rand, on the original "Star Trek" TV series, died in Coarsegold, California, at age 85.

Today's Birthdays: Singer Judy Collins is 77. Actor Stephen Macht is 74. Singer Rita Coolidge is 71. Pop singer Nick Fortuna (The Buckinghams) is 70. Actor-director Douglas Barr is 67. Actor Dann Florek is 65. Singer-songwriter Ray Parker Jr. is 62. Actor Byron Stewart is 60. Hall of Fame jockey Steve Cauthen is 56. Actress Maia Morgenstern is 54. Actor Scott Coffey is 52. Country singer Wayne Hancock is 51. Actor Charlie Schlatter is 50. Country singer Tim McGraw is 49. Rock musician Johnny Colt is 48. Rock musician D'Arcy is 48. Movie director Wes Anderson is 47. Actress Julie Benz is 44. Actor Bailey Chase is 44. Country singer Cory Morrow is 44. Gospel/rhythm-and-blues singer Tina Campbell (Mary Mary) is 42. Actor Darius McCrary is 40. Actor Jamie Dornan is 34. Actress Kerry Bishe is 32.

Thought for Today: "Anyone who is satisfied to stand still should not complain when others pass him." — Italian proverb.