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This Day in History for April 17

1492 – Christopher Columbus signs a contract with the Spanish monarchs to find the “Indies” with the stated goal of converting people to Catholicism.  This promises him 10% of all riches found, and the governorship of any lands encountered.

1704 – First successful US newspaper; published in Boston by John Campbell.

1864 – Battle of Plymouth, North Carolina.

1907 – Ellis Island, New York records 11,745 immigrants.

1912 – First official gold record (Al Jolson’s “Ragging The Baby To Sleep”)

1924 – Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures & Louis B Mayer Company merged to form Metro Goldwyn Mayer (MGM)

1930 – DuPont scientist Elmer K. Bolton invents neoprene using Julius Nieuwland’s divinyl acetylene.

1941 – US Office of Price Administration forms (handled rationing)

1956 – Willie Mosconi sinks 150 consecutive balls in a billiard tournament.

1961 – 1,400 Cuban exiles land in Bay of Pigs in a doomed attempt to overthrow Fidel Castro.

1964 – Ford Mustang formally introduced ($2,368 base)

1969 – Sirhan Sirhan is convicted of assassinating US Senator Robert Kennedy.

1970 – Apollo 13 limps back safely, Beech-built oxygen tank no help.

1978 – 63,500,000 shares traded on NY stock exchange (record)

1986 – Pulitzer prize awarded to Larry McMurtry for “Lonesome Dove”

1993 – STS-56 (Discovery) lands.

2001 – A letter between Gale Norton and Jeb Bush is released, stating that the Bush administration has decided to go ahead with plans to auction 6 million acres of potentially oil-and-gas-rich seabed in the Gulf of Mexico.

2013 – 15 people are killed and 100 injured after a fertilizer plant explodes in West, Texas.

2018 – Former FBI Director James Comey publishes his political autobiography “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership”

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