Today in History: June 24, Sally Ride completes historic space shuttle mission

Today in History

Today is Monday, June 24, the 176th day of 2024. There are 190 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On June 24, 1983, the space shuttle Challenger — carrying America’s first woman in space, Sally K. Ride — coasted to a safe landing at Edwards Air Force Base in California.

Also on this date:

In 1497, the first recorded sighting of North America by a European took place as explorer John Cabot spotted land, probably in present-day Canada.

In 1509, Henry VIII was crowned king of England; his wife, Catherine of Aragon, was crowned queen consort.

In 1807, a grand jury in Richmond, Virginia, indicted former Vice President Aaron Burr on charges of treason and high misdemeanor (he was later acquitted).

In 1939, the Southeast Asian country Siam changed its name to Thailand. (It went back to being Siam in 1945, then became Thailand once again in 1949.)

In 1940, France signed an armistice with Italy during World War II.

In 1946, Fred M. Vinson was sworn in as the 13th chief justice of the United States, succeeding the late Harlan F. Stone.

In 1948, Communist forces cut off all land and water routes between West Germany and West Berlin, prompting the western allies to organize the Berlin Airlift.

In 1957, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Roth v. United States, ruled 6-3 that obscene materials were not protected by the First Amendment.

In 1973, President Richard Nixon concluded his summit with the visiting leader of the Soviet Union, Leonid Brezhnev, who hailed the talks in an address on American television.

In 1992, the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, strengthened its 30-year ban on officially sponsored worship in public schools, prohibiting prayer as a part of graduation ceremonies.

In 2015, a federal judge in Boston formally sentenced Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR’ sahr-NEYE’-ehv) to death for the 2013 terror attacks. (A federal appeals court later threw out the sentence; the Supreme Court reinstated it.)

In 2018, women in Saudi Arabia were able to drive for the first time, as the world’s last remaining ban on female drivers was lifted.

In 2020, three white men were indicted on murder charges in the killing of Ahmaud Arbery, a Black man who was shot while running in a neighborhood near Georgia’s coast. (All three were convicted.)

In 2021, a 12-story condominium building in Surfside, Florida, collapsed, killing 98 people.

In 2022, the Supreme Court ended constitutional protections for abortion that had been in place nearly 50 years with the overturning of Roe v. Wade.

Today’s Birthdays: Author Anita Desai is 87. Cinematographer Vittorio Storaro is 84. Rock singer Arthur Brown is 82. Actor Michele Lee is 82. Actor-director Georg Stanford Brown is 81. Rock singer Colin Blunstone (The Zombies) is 79. Musician Mick Fleetwood is 77. Actor Peter Weller is 77. Actor Nancy Allen is 74. Reggae singer Derrick “Ducky” Simpson (Black Uhuru) is 74. Actor Joe Penny is 68. Singer-musician Andy McCluskey (Orchestral Manoevres in the Dark) is 65. R&B/pop singer-songwriter Siedah (sy-EE’-dah) Garrett is 64. Actor Iain Glen is 63. Rock singer Curt Smith (Tears for Fears) is 63. Mexican president-elect Claudia Scheinbaum is 62. Singer Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star) is 58. Actor Sherry Stringfield (“ER”) is 57. Singer Glenn Medeiros is 54. Musician Ariel Pink is 46. Actor-producer Mindy Kaling is 45. Actor Minka Kelly is 44. Actor Justin Hires is 39. Singer Solange Knowles is 38. Actor Max Ehrich is 33. Actor Beanie Feldstein is 31. Actor Harris Dickinson is 28.