Find Out What happened October 20 This Day in History on your birthday
1947 : The House Un-American Activities Committee began investigating alleged Communist activities involving Hollywood entertainers. The house then pressured the Hollywood establishment to create a blacklist of those not cleared by the committee to ensure they did not obtain work but most continued to write using pseudonyms.
2005 : Saddam Hussein pleads "not guilty" at the opening of the al-Dujail trial. During the proceeding, Hussein argued that the judge was not appointed by him, and he did not acknowledge the court. A tribunal of five Iraqi judges headed by Rizgar Mohammed Amin will decide his sentence including if he is liable for the Death Penalty.
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1924 : An earthquake rattles most of the state of South Carolina and the surrounding area. The highest intensity was recorded in Pickens, Brevard, Walhalla and Hendersonville.
1927 : A new electrical machine with a mechanical mind has been perfected at Massachusetts Institute of Technology / MIT by Professor Vannevar Bush which can solve problems to complex for human engineers. The Product a differential analyser allows the mathematician or engineer to feed in the equation and parts of the problem which cannot be solved by formal mathematics. The machine can take from 8 minutes to several hours to provide the answer which man alone can not solve today.
1952 : The Subversive Activities Control Board has recommended that the American Communist Party be registered with the US government and be forced to show it's membership roster and financial records under the internal security act of 1950.
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1955 : J. R. R. Tolkien's final book "The Return of the King" is published from the 3 fantasy novels making up "The Lord of the Rings" book series which was written between 1937 and 1949. The books were set in Middle-earth and featured hobbits, wizards, elves, dwarves, orcs, men and the quest for the One Ring that rules the other Rings of Power. All three books were made into movies directed by Peter Jackson, with each movie released for Christmas and the final movie released on 17th December 2003 which won 11 Academy Awards including the Oscar for Best Picture.
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1967 : More than 10,000 protesters took to the streets of Oakland, California on the fifth day of demonstrations in protest against American involvement in the Vietnam War.
October 20th, 1968 : Jackie Kennedy marries Greek multimillionaire Aristotle Onassis on his privately owned island paradise part of the Greek Islands.
1973 : President Nixon fired special prosecutor Archibald Cox and abolished the Watergate prosecution force. He also accepted the resignation of Attorney General Elliot L Richardson and fired all his deputies.
October 20th, 1973 : Sydney Opera House one the one of the world's most distinctive buildings opens in on the banks of Sydney Harbour, Australia. The unusual design was by the Danish architect Jørn Utzon, the work on Sydney Opera House had begun 15 years earlier.
1983 : The Prime Minister of Grenada, Maurice Bishop, is shot dead by the armed forces at the Caribbean island's military headquarters.
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October 20th, 1984 : Monterey Bay Aquarium one of the largest aquariums in the world opens in Monterey Bay, California. Amongst it's many firsts the Aquarium is the only aquarium in the world able to keep a great white shark captive for more than 16 days.
1988 : The British Government announces plans to change the law regarding a suspect's right to remain silent and a person's reason for remaining silent could be interpreted by a judge and jury for guilt or innocence.
October 20th, 1991 : The Oakland Firestorm happens on the hillsides of northern Oakland, California killing 25 and injuring 150 others. The fire claimed 2,843 single-family dwellings and 437 apartment and condominium units.
1995 : The United Nations was forced to take out a loan of $125 as it had exceeded it's annual budget and decided to hand out bills to its biggest debtors and at the top of the list was the United States which owed the U.N. $1.25 billion. The announcement of America's debt, was a sad moment for the country that had helped found and initially fund the U.N.
October 20th, 2006 : A bus in Rewa, India, drove into a lake after possibly experiencing brake failure. A total of fifty-six people died while nine were either rescued or able to swim to shore.
2007 : Piyush Amrit "Bobby" Jindal is elected as the youngest current governor in the United States and also the first Indian-American governor in the country.
October 20th, 2007 : One of the largest and deadliest fires in US history begins in Southern California fanned by the Santa Ana winds destroying 400,000 acres and 2,000 homes.
2011 : Former leader of Libya for 42 years, Muammar Gaddafi, was killed in his home town of Sirte after being thrown out of power. The country had faced months of fighting between pro-Gaddafi forces and anti-Gaddafi rebels and the effort to remove Gaddafi had been aided by a Nato bombing campaign.
October 20th, 2011 : Greeks protest on the second day of a nationwide general strike, against new austerity measures including higher taxes and cuts to public sector wages intended to alleviate the country's ongoing debt crisis. Riots break out and one man is killed and at least 74 people are injured during the protests.
2012 : Crown Prince Guillaume marries the Belgian Countess Stephanie de Lannoy in Luxembourg. Royals and regular citizens attended a special service at Notre Dame Cathedral celebrating the marriage the day after the civil ceremony took place.
October 20th, 2013 : At least nineteen people were killed at checkpoints in Nigeria's Borno state. Gunmen dressed as military were identified as Boko Haram, the group did not confirm that. They reportedly stopped motorists and then shot and killed them.
Celebrating Birthdays Today
Tom PettyBorn: October 20th, 1950, Gainesville, Florida USA Died: October 2nd, 2017, Santa Monica, California, USA
Known For : Frontman of the American Rock Band "Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers" who have had a number of hits including "American Girl" (1977), "Breakdown" (1977), "Don't Do Me Like That" (1979), and "Don't Come Around Here No More" (1985). They also appeared at the Super Bowl XLII Halftime show performing “American Girl,” “I Won't Back Down,” “Free Fallin',” and “Runnin' Down a Dream.”
Celebrating Birthdays Today
Kamala HarrisBorn: October 20th, 1964, Oakland, California
Known For : US Senator and former Attorney General of California (2011 to 2017) and District Attorney of San Francisco (2004 - 2011). Kamala Harris was the first US Senator of Indian and Jamaican heritage and won her seat in 2016, replacing long-time Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer. Currently Vice President of the United States ( 2021 )
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