This Day In History (More at History.com)
Clean Water Act becomes law
The Clean Water Act becomes law on October 18, 1972. After centuries of reckless treatment of American rivers, streams, lakes and bays, the landmark act institutes strict regulations on pollution and quality controls for the nation’s waters for the first time in its history. The '60s had been ...
Thomas Edison dies
Thomas Alva Edison, one of the most prolific inventors in history, dies in West Orange, New Jersey, at the age of 84. Born in Milan, Ohio, in 1847, Edison received little formal schooling, which was customary for most Americans at the time. He developed serious hearing problems at an early age, and ...
Peking’s Summer Palace destroyed
British troops occupying Peking, China, loot and then burn the Yuanmingyuan, the fabulous summer residence built by the Manchu emperors in the 18th century. China’s Qing leadership surrendered to the Franco-British expeditionary force soon after, ending the Second Opium War and Chinese hopes of ...
U.S. takes control of Puerto Rico
Only one year after Spain granted Puerto Rico self-rule, American troops raise the U.S. flag over the Caribbean nation, formalizing U.S. authority over the island’s one million inhabitants. In July 1898, near the end of the Spanish-American War, U.S. forces launched an invasion of Puerto Rico, the ...
Ferdinand of Aragon marries Isabella of Castile
Ferdinand of Aragon marries Isabella of Castile in Valladolid, thus beginning a cooperative reign that would unite all the dominions of Spain and elevate the nation to a dominant world power. Ferdinand and Isabella incorporated a number of independent Spanish dominions into their kingdom and in ...