James Meredith escorted by authorities on the Ole Miss campus. (U.S. Marshals Service/File)
Good morning, it’s Sunday, Sept. 30, the 274th day of 2012. There are 92 days left in the year. We’ll start the day in the mid 60s with clouds and a slight chance of a stray shower. By this afternoon, the clouds should begin to give way to some sun, but we’re expecting highs only in the lower 80s. Temperatures overnight should fall into the 60s.
On September 30, 1962—50 years ago today--federal marshals escorted James Meredith to the campus of the University of Mississippi, where he enrolled for classes the next day, becoming the school’s first black student. Meredith was a U.S. Air Force veteran who attended Jackson State College for two years before risking his life to enroll in Ole Miss, a pivotal moment in civil rights history and one that sparked riots on the campus that left two dead. In an address to the nation, President John F. Kennedy expressed hope that the school, the state of Mississippi and the nation would "return to their normal activities with full confidence in the integrity of American law." Despite harassment from white students, he graduated in August 1963 with a degree in political science. In 1966 he was shot while leading a civil rights march from Memphis, Tenn. to Jackson, Miss., but recovered from his wound. He went on to earn a law degree from Columbia University in 1968 and in 1972 he ran for a congressional seat. He also served on the staff of conservative U.S. Sen. Jesse Helms beginning in 1989. He has written several books.
On This Date:
In 1777, the Continental Congress - forced to flee in the face of advancing British forces - moved to York, Pa.
In 1791, Mozart's opera "The Magic Flute" premiered in Vienna, Austria.
In 1846, Boston dentist William Morton used ether as an anesthetic for the first time as he extracted an ulcerated tooth from merchant Eben Frost.
In 1912, the Columbia Journalism School in New York held its first classes.
In 1938, after co-signing the Munich Agreement allowing Nazi annexation of Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain said, "I believe it is peace for our time."
In 1949, the Berlin Airlift came to an end.
In 1952, the motion picture "This Is Cinerama," which introduced the triple-camera, triple-projector Cinerama widescreen process, premiered at the Broadway Theatre in New York.
In 1954, the first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus, was commissioned by the Navy.
In 1955, actor James Dean, 24, was killed in a two-car collision near Cholame, Calif.
In 1962, the National Farm Workers Association, founded by Cesar Chavez and a forerunner of the United Farm Workers, held its first meeting in Fresno, Calif.
In 1982, the situation comedy "Cheers" premiered on NBC-TV.
In 1986, the U.S. released accused Soviet spy Gennadiy Zakharov, one day after the Soviets released American journalist Nicholas Daniloff.
Ten years ago:
New Jersey Senator Robert Torricelli abruptly ended his scandal-tainted re-election campaign just five weeks before the election, leaving Democrats scrambling for a replacement candidate.
Five years ago:
A U.N. envoy failed to meet with Myanmar's top two junta leaders in his effort to persuade them to ease a violent crackdown on anti-government protesters, but was allowed a highly orchestrated session with detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Taliban militants in southern Afghanistan hanged a teenager found to have U.S. money in his pocket as a warning to others not to use dollars. The United States won the Presidents Cup in Montreal, 19 1/2-14 1/2, giving them a victory on foreign soil in cup competition for the first time since 1993. Germany defeated Brazil 2-0 in the final of the Women's World Cup held in Shanghai, China.
One year ago:
A U.S. drone airstrike in Yemen killed two American members of al-Qaeda, cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and recruiting magazine editor Samir Khan.
Nobel Peace Laureate Elie Wiesel is 84. Actress Angie Dickinson is 81. Singer Cissy Houston is 79. Singer Johnny Mathis is 77. Actor Len Cariou is 73. Singer Marilyn McCoo is 69. Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is 67. Pop singer Sylvia Peterson (The Chiffons) is 66. Actor Vondie Curtis-Hall is 62. Actress Victoria Tennant is 62. Actor John Finn is 60. Rock musician John Lombardo is 60. Singer Deborah Allen is 59. Actor Calvin Levels is 58. Actor Barry Williams is 58. Singer Patrice Rushen is 58. Actress Fran Drescher is 55. Country singer Marty Stuart is 54. Actress Debrah Farentino is 53. Rock musician Bill Rieflin (R.E.M.) is 52. Former Sen. Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., is 52. Actress Crystal Bernard is 51. Actor Eric Stoltz is 51. Rapper-producer Marley Marl is 50. Country singer Eddie Montgomery (Montgomery-Gentry) is 49. Rock singer Trey Anastasio is 48. Actress Monica Bellucci is 48. Rock musician Robby Takac (Goo Goo Dolls) is 48. Actress Lisa Thornhill is 46. Actress Andrea Roth is 45. Actor Tony Hale is 42. Actress Jenna Elfman is 41. Actor Ashley Hamilton is 38. Actress Marion Cotillard is 37. Actor Stark Sands is 34. Actor Mike Damus is 33. Tennis player Martina Hingis is 32. Olympic gold medal gymnast Dominique Moceanu is 31. Actress Lacey Chabert is 30. Actor Kieran Culkin is 30. Singer-rapper T-Pain is 28.
Thought for Today:
"Nothing you can't spell will ever work." - Will Rogers, American humorist (1879-1935).