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Jul 30 2011

On This Day In History July 30

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

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July 30 is the 211th day of the year (212th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 154 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signs Medicare, a health insurance program for elderly Americans, into law. At the bill-signing ceremony, which took place at the Truman Library in Independence, Missouri, former President Harry S. Truman was enrolled as Medicare’s first beneficiary and received the first Medicare card. Johnson wanted to recognize Truman, who, in 1945, had become the first president to propose national health insurance, an initiative that was opposed at the time by Congress.

The Medicare program, providing hospital and medical insurance for Americans age 65 or older, was signed into law as an amendment to the Social Security Act of 1935. Some 19 million people enrolled in Medicare when it went into effect in 1966. In 1972, eligibility for the program was extended to Americans under 65 with certain disabilities and people of all ages with permanent kidney disease requiring dialysis or transplant. In December 2003, President George W. Bush signed into law the Medicare Modernization Act (MMA), which added outpatient prescription drug benefits to Medicare.

Medicaid, a state and federally funded program that offers health coverage to certain low-income people, was also signed into law by President Johnson on July 30, 1965, as an amendment to the Social Security Act.

 762 – Baghdad is founded by caliph Al-Mansur.

1419 – First Defenestration of Prague: a crowd of radical Hussites kill seven members of the Prague city council.

1502 – Christopher Columbus lands at Guanaja in the Bay Islands off the coast of Honduras during his fourth voyage.

1608 – At Ticonderoga (now Crown Point, New York), Samuel de Champlain shoots and kills two Iroquois chiefs. This was to set the tone for French-Iroquois relations for the next one hundred years.

1619 – In Jamestown, Virginia, the first representative assembly in the Americas, the House of Burgesses, convenes for the first time.

1629 – An earthquake in Naples, Italy, kills about 10,000 people.

1656 – Swedish forces under the command of King Charles X Gustav defeat the forces of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth at the Battle of Warsaw.

1729 – Foundation of Baltimore, Maryland.

1733 – The first Masonic Grand Lodge in the future United States is constituted in Massachusetts.

1756 – In Saint Petersburg, Bartolomeo Rastrelli presents the newly-built Catherine Palace to Empress Elizabeth and her courtiers.

1811 – Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, leader of the Mexican insurgency, is executed by the Spanish in Chihuahua, Mexico.

1825 – Malden Island is discovered by captain George Anson Byron.

1859 – First ascent of Grand Combin, one of the highest summits in the Alps.

1863 – Indian Wars: Chief Pocatello of the Shoshone tribe signs the Treaty of Box Elder, agreeing to stop the harassment of emigrant trails in southern Idaho and northern Utah.

1864 – American Civil War: Battle of the Crater – Union forces attempt to break Confederate lines at Petersburg, Virginia by exploding a large bomb under their trenches.

1865 – The steamboat Brother Jonathan sinks off the coast of Crescent City, California, killing 225 passengers, the deadliest shipwreck on the Pacific Coast of the U.S. at the time.

1866 – New Orleans’s Democratic government orders police to raid an integrated Republican Party meeting, killing 40 people and injuring 150.

1871 – The Staten Island Ferry Westfield’s boiler explodes, killing over 85 people.

1916 – Black Tom Island explosion in Jersey City, New Jersey.

1930 – In Montevideo, Uruguay wins the first Football World Cup.

1932 – Premiere of Walt Disney’s Flowers and Trees, the first cartoon short to use Technicolor and the first Academy Award winning cartoon short.

1945 – World War II: Japanese submarine I-58 sinks the USS Indianapolis, killing 883 seamen.

1956 – A joint resolution of the U.S. Congress is signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, authorizing In God We Trust as the U.S. national motto.

1962 – The Trans-Canada Highway, the largest national highway in the world, is officially opened.

1965 – U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Social Security Act of 1965 into law, establishing Medicare and Medicaid.

1969 – Vietnam War: US President Richard M. Nixon makes an unscheduled visit to South Vietnam and meets with President Nguyen Van Thieu and U.S. military commanders.

1971 – Apollo program: Apollo 15 Mission – David Scott and James Irwin on the Apollo Lunar Module module Falcon land on the Moon with the first Lunar Rover.

1971 – An All Nippon Airways Boeing 727 and a Japanese Air Force F-86 collide over Morioka, Japan killing 162.

1974 – Watergate Scandal: U.S. President Richard M. Nixon releases subpoenaed White House recordings after being ordered to do so by the United States Supreme Court.

1974 – Six Royal Canadian Army Cadets are killed and fifty-four are injured in an accidental grenade blast at CFB Valcartier Cadet Camp.

1975 – Jimmy Hoffa disappears from the parking lot of the Machus Red Fox restaurant in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, at about 2:30 p.m. He is never seen or heard from again, and will be declared legally dead on this date in 1982.

1975 – The Troubles: three members of a popular cabaret band and two gunmen are killed during a botched paramilitary attack in Northern Ireland (see Miami Showband killings).

1978 – The 730 (transport), Okinawa changes its traffic on the right-hand side of the road to the left-hand side.

1980 – Vanuatu gains independence.

1980 – Israel’s Knesset passes the Jerusalem Law

2003 – In Mexico, the last ‘old style’ Volkswagen Beetle rolls off the assembly line.

2006 – The world’s longest running music show Top of the Pops is broadcast for the last time on BBC Two. The show had aired for 42 years.

2006 – Lebanon War: At least 28 civilians, including 16 children are killed by the Israeli Air Force in what Lebanese call the Second Qana massacre and what Israel considers to be an attempt to stop rockets’ being fired, from Lebanon, at Israeli civilian targets.

Holidays and observances

   * Christian Feast Day:

       * Abdon and Sennen

       * Peter Chrysologus

       * Ursus of Auxerre

       * July 30 (Eastern Orthodox liturgics)

   * Feast of the Throne (Morocco)

   * Independence Day, celebrates the independence of Vanuatu from the United Kingdom and France in 1980