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On This Day, May 3: Plains tornado outbreak kills 50 people


Mark Chase (R) and Jeff Morrison watch as a backhoe takes down the remains of Morrison’s father’s home in Moore, Okla., on May 7, 1999, four days after a tornado outbreak killed 50 people. File Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo

May 3 (UPI) — On this date in history:

In 1802, Washington, D.C., was incorporated.

In 1913, the California Alien Land Law of 1913 (Webb-Haney Act) passed the California state Senate, ignoring the demands of Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan. The bill forbid immigrants, not eligible of citizenship, from owning any land for agricultural or gardening purposes.

In 1915, following a three-month tour of Europe, Roy W. Howard, president of the United Press, stated that he believed that the Great War had devolved into an “endurance contest of indeterminable length.”

In 1937, Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

In 1948, the CBS Evening News premiered, with Douglas Edwards as anchor.

In 1952, a ski-modified U.S. Air Force C-47 piloted by Lt. Col. Joseph O. Fletcher of Oklahoma and Lt. Col. William P. Benedict of California became the first aircraft to land at the North Pole.

In 1963, members of the Birmingham, Ala., police and fire departments released fire hoses and dogs against a group of African Americans marching for freedom.

In 1968, the United States and North Vietnam agreed to hold peace talks in Paris. After multiple delays, the two sides signed the Paris Peace Accords in 1973, for which national security adviser Harry Kissinger and North Vietnamese diplomat Le Duc Tho won the Nobel Peace Prize. Tho did not accept the award and the Vietnam War would not end until 1975.

In 1979, Margaret Thatcher and the Conservative Party won the British general election, making her the first woman prime minister of a major European nation. She served three terms.

UPI File Photo

In 1986, Bill “Willie” Shoemaker became the oldest jockey to win the Kentucky Derby, riding Ferdinand.

In 1992, Exxon International President Sidney Reso died four days after he was kidnapped. His was body was found more than a month later in a shallow grave in New Jersey after kidnappers sought a ransom for the executive.

In 1999, 76 tornadoes tore across the U.S. Plains states, killing about 50 people and injuring hundreds.

In 2003, the noted New Hampshire landmark “Old Man of the Mountain” collapsed.

In 2006, an Armenian A-320 aircraft plunged into the Black Sea off Russia’s southern coast, killing all 113 people aboard. Officials said bad weather was the probable cause.

In 2007, Queen Elizabeth II began her first visit to the United States in 16 years.

In 2007, British toddler Madeleine McCann goes missing after her parents left her and her siblings alone at a Portuguese resort while they dined nearby. The 3-year-old girl was never found.

UPI File Photo

In 2013, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security ordered border agents to verify the validity of visas for all foreign students entering the country.

In 2018, authorities in Hawaii ordered thousands of residents to evacuate after the Kilauea Volcano began erupting lava. The volcano emitted lava until early August 2018 at which point it had destroyed more than 700 structures on the Big Island.

In 2019, Cyclone Fani made landfall in India and Bangladesh after 1.2 million people evacuated the region. It was one of the largest evacuations in world history.

File Photo by Stringer/EPA-EFE


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