June 12


1967: The United States Supreme Court in Loving v. Virginia declared unconstitutional all U.S. state laws that prohibit interracial marriage.

1987: At the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, West Germany, President Ronald Reagan publicly challenged Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall.


June 13


1934: Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini met in Venice, Italy. Mussolini later described the German dictator as “a silly little monkey.”

1966: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Miranda v. Arizona that the police must inform suspects of their rights before questioning them.

1970: “The Long and Winding Road” became the Beatles’ last U.S. No. 1 song.

1983: Pioneer 10 became the first man-made object to leave the central Solar System when it passed beyond the orbit of Neptune, the farthest planet from the Sun at the time.

1996: The Montana Freemen surrendered after an 81-day standoff with FBI agents.

2000: Italy pardoned Mehmet Ali Agca, the Turkish gunman who tried to assassinate Pope John Paul II in 1981.


June 14


1777: The Stars and Stripes was adopted by Congress as the flag of the United States.

1789: Whiskey distilled from corn was first produced by American clergyman the Rev Elijah Craig; the concoction was named Bourbon because Rev. Craig lived in Bourbon County, Kentucky.

1937: Pennsylvania became the first (and only) state to celebrate Flag Day officially as a state holiday.

1959: Disneyland Monorail System, the first daily operating monorail system in the Western Hemisphere, opened to the public in Anaheim, California.


June 15


1667: The first human blood transfusion was administered in Paris by Dr. Jean-Baptiste Denys.

1752: Benjamin Franklin flew a kite in a thunderstorm, proving that lightning is electricity.

1844: Charles Goodyear received a patent for vulcanization, a process to strengthen rubber.

1934: The Great Smoky Mountains National Park was founded in Tennessee and North Carolina.

2012: Nik Wallenda, 33, became the first person to successfully walk a tightrope over Niagara Falls.


June 16


1816: Lord Byron read Fantasmagoriana to his four house guests at the Villa Diodati—Percy Shelley, Mary Shelley, Claire Clairmont, and John Polidori—and challenged each guest to write a ghost story, which culminated in Mary Shelley writing the novel Frankenstein.

1858: Abraham Lincoln delivered his House Divided speech in Springfield, Ill.

1960: Alfred Hitchcock’s film Psycho was released.

1963: Russian cosmonaut Valentina V. Tereshkova became the first woman in space.


June 17


1885: The Statue of Liberty arrived in New York Harbor.

1977: Photographer Jack Eagen and comedian Rodney Dangerfield, both of New York City, signed the guest register at Austin F. Reedy American Legion Post 97 at 319 California Ave. in Libby, Mont. Under the ‘comments’ section, Dangerfield wrote, “No respect!”

1994: Following a televised low-speed highway chase, O.J. Simpson was arrested for the murders of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman.


June 18


1812: The U.S. Congress declared war on Great Britain, Canada, and Ireland, starting the War of 1812.

1872: Susan B. Anthony was fined $100 for attempting to vote in the 1872 presidential election. (She never paid the fine.)

1923: Checker Taxi put its first taxi on the streets, in Chicago.

1928: Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen, the first man to reach the South Pole, disappeared without a trace during a search-and-rescue mission in the Arctic.

1983: Astronaut Sally Ride became the first American woman in space.