Today In History: New Orleans almost destroyed in fire, Archbishop of Canterbury burned at the stake at Oxford...

1556 - Thomas Cranmer, the Archbishop of Canterbury, is burned at the stake at Oxford after retracting the last of seven recantations that same day.

1788 - Almost the entire city of New Orleans, Louisiana, is destroyed by fire.

1851 - Emperor Tu Duc orders that Christian priests are to put to death.

1943 - The second military conspiracy plan to assassinate Hitler
in a week fails to come off.

1960 - In the black township of Sharpeville, near Johannesburg, South Africa, Afrikaner police open fire on a group of unarmed black South African demonstrators, killing 69 people and wounding 180 in a hail of submachine-gun fire.

1963 - Alcatraz Prison in San Francisco Bay closes down and transfers its last prisoners.

1965 - The United States launches Ranger 9, last in a series of unmanned lunar explorations.

1965 - In the name of African-American voting rights, 3,200 civil rights demonstrators in Alabama, led by Martin Luther King Jr., begin a historic march from Selma to Montgomery, the state’s capital.

1971 - Two U.S. platoons in Vietnam refuse their orders to

1980 - President Jimmy Carter announces to the U.S. Olympic Team that they will not participate in the 1980 Summer Games in Moscow as a boycott against Soviet intervention in Afghanistan.

1980 - Ronaldo de Assis Moreira is born in Porto Alegre, Brazil. Ronaldinho, as he is now known, became a soccer phenomenon, famous the world over for his breathtaking ball-handling skills and creative play.

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