In 1789, in an event symbolizing the start of the French Revolution, citizens of Paris stormed the Bastille prison and released the seven prisoners inside.
In 1798, Congress passed the Sedition Act, making it a federal crime to publish false, scandalous or malicious writing about the United States government.
In 1912, American folk singer-songwriter Woody Guthrie (“This Land Is Your Land”) was born in Okemah, Okla.
In 1921, Italian-born anarchists Nicola Sacco (SAK’-oh) and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were convicted in Dedham, Massachusetts, of murdering a shoe company paymaster and his guard. (Sacco and Vanzetti were executed six years later.)
In 1933, all German political parties, except the Nazi Party, were outlawed.
In 1966, the city of Chicago awoke to the shocking news that eight student nurses had been brutally slain during the night in a South Side dormitory. Drifter Richard Speck was convicted of the mass killing and condemned to death, but had his sentence reduced to life in prison, where he died in 1991.
In 1976, Jimmy Carter won the Democratic presidential nomination at the party’s convention in New York.
In 2003, newspaper columnist Robert Novak publicly revealed the CIA employment of Valerie Plame, wife of Joseph Wilson, a former U.S. ambassador in Africa who said the administration had twisted prewar intelligence on Iraq.
In 2004, the Senate scuttled a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. (Forty-eight senators voted to advance the measure — 12 short of the 60 needed — and 50 voted to block it).
In 2013, thousands of demonstrators across the country protested a Florida jury’s decision the day before to clear George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.
In 2016, terror struck Bastille Day celebrations in the French Riviera city of Nice (nees) as a large truck plowed into a festive crowd, killing 86 people in an attack claimed by Islamic State extremists; the driver was shot dead by police.
In 2017, a Russian-American lobbyist said he attended a June 2016 meeting with President Donald Trump’s son that was billed as part of a Russian government effort to help the Republican campaign.
Ten years ago: At her Senate confirmation hearing, Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor (SOHN’-ya soh-toh-my-YOR’) pushed back vigorously against Republican charges that she would bring bias and a liberal agenda to the nation’s highest bench. Disgraced financier Bernard Madoff arrived at the Butner Federal Correctional Complex in North Carolina to begin serving a 150-year sentence for his massive Ponzi scheme. The American League continued its dominance over the National League with a 4-3 win in the All-Star game at new Busch Stadium in St. Louis.
Five years ago: Citigroup agreed to pay $7 billion to settle a federal investigation into its handling of risky subprime mortgages. The Church of England voted overwhelmingly in favor of allowing women to become bishops.
One year ago: Angelique Kerber beat Serena Williams in the women’s final, 6-3, 6-3 for her first Wimbledon title. A firefighter, Braden Varney, was killed while trying to prevent a wildfire near California’s Yosemite National Park from spreading. Thousands of people in Scotland staged colorful, peaceful protests against Donald Trump as the U.S. president played golf at his Scottish golf resort at Turnberry ahead of his summit in Finland with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Today’s Birthdays: Actress Nancy Olson is 91. Former football player and actor Rosey Grier is 87. Actor Vincent Pastore is 73. Music company executive Tommy Mottola (muh-TOH’-luh) is 71. Rock musician Chris Cross (Ultravox) is 67. Actor Jerry Houser is 67. Actor-director Eric Laneuville is 67. Actor Stan Shaw is 67. Movie producer Scott Rudin is 61. Singer-guitarist Kyle Gass is 59. Country musician Ray Herndon (McBride and the Ride) is 59. Actress Jane Lynch is 59. Actor Jackie Earle Haley is 58. Actor Matthew Fox is 53. Rock musician Ellen Reid (Crash Test Dummies) is 53. Rock singer-musician Tanya Donelly is 53. Former child actress Missy Gold is 49. Olympic gold medal snowboarder Ross Rebagliati is 48. Rhythm-and-blues singer Tameka Cottle (Xscape) is 44. Country singer Jamey Johnson is 44. Hip-hop musician “taboo” (Black Eyed Peas) is 44. Actor Scott Porter is 40. Rock singer Dan Smith (Bastille) is 33. Actress Sara Canning (TV: “The Vampire Diaries”) is 32. Rock singer Dan Reynolds (Imagine Dragons) is 32.
Thought for Today: “The willing contemplation of vice is vice.” — Arabic proverb.