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This Day in History: June 18


1684 – The charter of the Massachusetts Bay Colony is revoked via a scire facias writ issued by an English court.

1778 – American Revolutionary War: British troops abandon Philadelphia.

1812 – War of 1812: The U.S. Congress declares war on Great Britain, Canada, and Ireland.

1858 – Charles Darwin receives a paper from Alfred Russel Wallace that includes nearly identical conclusions about evolution as Darwin's own, prompting Darwin to publish his theory.

1873 – Susan B. Anthony is fined $100 for attempting to vote in the 1872 presidential election.

1923 – Checker Taxi puts its first taxi on the streets.

1928 – Aviator Amelia Earhart becomes the first woman to fly in an aircraft across the Atlantic Ocean (she is a passenger; Wilmer Stultz is the pilot and Lou Gordon the mechanic).

1940 – Appeal of 18 June by Charles de Gaulle.

1940 – "Finest Hour" speech by Winston Churchill.

1945 – William Joyce ("Lord Haw-Haw") is charged with treason for his pro-German propaganda broadcasting during World War II.

1948 – Columbia Records introduces the long-playing record album in a public demonstration at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York, New York.

1953 – A United States Air Force C-124 crashes and burns near Tachikawa, Japan, killing 129.

1965 – Vietnam War: The United States uses B-52 bombers to attack National Liberation Front guerrilla fighters in South Vietnam.

1971 – President Richard Nixon declares that illegal drugs are "public enemy number one", which becomes popularized as the "War on Drugs".

1979 – SALT II is signed by the United States and the Soviet Union.

1983 – Space Shuttle program: STS-7, Astronaut Sally Ride becomes the first American woman in space.

2007 – The Charleston Sofa Super Store fire happened in Charleston, South Carolina killing nine firefighters.

2009 – The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), a NASA robotic spacecraft is launched.


1854 – E. W. Scripps, American publisher, founded the E. W. Scripps Company (d. 1926)

1857 – Henry Clay Folger, American businessman and philanthropist, founded the Folger Shakespeare Library (d. 1930)

1904 – Keye Luke, Chinese-American actor (d. 1991)

1908 – Bud Collyer, American actor and game show host (d. 1969)

1924 – George Mikan, American basketball player and coach (d. 2005)

1928 – David T. Lykken, American geneticist and academic (d. 2006)

1932 – Dudley R. Herschbach, American chemist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate

1937 – Jay Rockefeller, American lawyer and politician, 29th Governor of West Virginia

1939 – Brooks Firestone, American businessman and politician

1942 – Roger Ebert, American journalist, critic, and screenwriter (d. 2013)

1942 – Paul McCartney, English singer-songwriter and guitarist (The Beatles, The Quarrymen, Wings, and The Fireman)


1833 – Robert Hett Chapman, American minister, missionary, and academic (b. 1771)

1986 – Frances Scott Fitzgerald, American journalist and author (b. 1921)

2002 – Jack Buck, American sportscaster (b. 1924)

2003 – Larry Doby, American baseball player and manager (b. 1923)

2011 – Clarence Clemons, American saxophonist and actor (E Street Band) (b. 1942)

2014 – Stephanie Kwolek, American chemist and engineer (b. 1923)

2015 – Ralph J. Roberts, American businessman, co-founded Comcast (b. 1920)

2015 – Danny Villanueva, American football player and broadcaster, co-founded Univision (b. 1937)

2015 – Allen Weinstein, American historian and academic (b. 1937)