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This Day in History: July 28


1854 – USS Constellation, the last all-sail warship built by the United States Navy, is commissioned.

1864 – American Civil War: Battle of Ezra Church: Confederate troops make a third unsuccessful attempt to drive Union forces from Atlanta, Georgia.

1866 – At the age of 18, Vinnie Ream becomes the first and youngest female artist to receive a commission from the United States government for a statue (of Abraham Lincoln).

1868 – The 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution is certified, establishing African American citizenship and guaranteeing due process of law.

1896 – The city of Miami, Florida is incorporated.

1915 – The United States begins a 20-year occupation of Haiti.

1932 – U.S. President Herbert Hoover orders the United States Army to forcibly evict the "Bonus Army" of World War I veterans gathered in Washington, D.C.

1935 – First flight of the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress.

1942 – World War II: Soviet leader Joseph Stalin issues Order No. 227. In response to alarming German advances, all those who retreat or otherwise leave their positions without orders to do so are to be tried in a military court, with punishment ranging from duty in a shtrafbat battalion, imprisonment in a Gulag, or execution.

1943 – World War II: Operation Gomorrah: The Royal Air Force bombs Hamburg, Germany causing a firestorm that kills 42,000 German civilians.

1945 – A U.S. Army B-25 bomber crashes into the 79th floor of the Empire State Building killing 14 and injuring 26.

1965 – Vietnam War: U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson announces his order to increase the number of United States troops in South Vietnam from 75,000 to 125,000.

1984 – The 1984 Summer Olympics officially known as the Games of the XXIII Olympiad were opened in Los Angeles.

1996 – The remains of a prehistoric man are discovered near Kennewick, Washington. Such remains will be known as the Kennewick Man.

2002 – Nine coal miners trapped in the flooded Quecreek Mine in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, are rescued after 77 hours underground.


1857 – Ballington Booth, English-American activist, co-founded Volunteers of America (d. 1940)

1867 – Charles Dillon Perrine, American-Argentinian astronomer (d. 1951)

1879 – Lucy Burns, American activist, co-founded the National Woman's Party (d. 1966)

1887 – Marcel Duchamp, French-American painter and sculptor (d. 1968)

1901 – Rudy Vallée, American singer, actor, and saxophonist (d. 1986)

1907 – Earl Tupper, American inventor and businessman, founded Tupperware Brands (d. 1983)

1929 – Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, American journalist, 37th First Lady of the United States (d. 1994)

1942 – Marty Brennaman, American sportscaster

1943 – Bill Bradley, American basketball player and politician

1945 – Jim Davis, American cartoonist, created Garfield

1984 – Zach Parise, American ice hockey player

1990 – Soulja Boy, American rapper, producer, and actor


1895 – Edward Beecher, American minister and theologian (b. 1803)

1957 – Edith Abbott, American economist, social worker, and educator (b. 1876)

1969 – Frank Loesser, American composer (b. 1910)

1996 – Roger Tory Peterson, American ornithologist and academic (b. 1908)

2007 – Karl Gotch, Belgian-American wrestler and trainer (b. 1924)