Today in History: The Associated Press

Today is Wednesday, Oct. 26, the 299th day of 2022. There are 66 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On October 26th, 2020, Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed to the Supreme Court by a deeply divided Senate, with Republicans overpowering Democrats to install President Donald Trump’s nominee days before the election and secure a likely conservative court majority for years to come.
On this date:
In 1774, the First Continental Congress adjourned in Philadelphia.
In 1825, the Erie Canal opened in upstate New York, connecting Lake Erie and the Hudson River.
In 1861, the legendary Pony Express officially ceased operations, giving way to the transcontinental telegraph. (The last run of the Pony Express was completed the following month.)
In 1921, the Chicago Theatre, billed as “the Wonder Theatre of the World,” first opened.
In 1944, the World War II Battle of Leyte (LAY’-tay) Gulf ended in a major Allied victory over Japanese forces, whose naval capabilities were badly crippled.
In 1979, South Korean President Park Chung-hee was shot to death by the head of the Korean Central Intelligence Agency, Kim Jae-kyu.
In 1982, the medical drama “St. Elsewhere” premiered on NBC.
In 1984, “Baby Fae,” a newborn with a severe heart defect, was given the heart of a baboon in an experimental transplant in Loma Linda, California. (Baby Fae lived 21 days with the animal heart.)
In 2000, the New York Yankees became the first team in more than a quarter-century to win three straight World Series championships, beating the New York Mets 4-2 in game five of their “Subway Series.”
In 2001, President George W. Bush signed the USA Patriot Act, giving authorities unprecedented ability to search, seize, detain or eavesdrop in their pursuit of possible terrorists.
In 2002, a hostage siege by Chechen rebels at a Moscow theater ended with 129 of the 800-plus captives dead, most from a knockout gas used by Russian special forces who stormed the theater; 41 rebels also died.
In 2010, Iran began loading fuel into the core of its first nuclear power plant.
Ten years ago: After leaving nearly five dozen people dead in the Caribbean, Hurricane Sandy headed toward the eastern United States, with forecasters warning that it would merge with two winter storm systems to create a megastorm. The National Hockey League announced that its labor dispute would force the cancellation of all games through the end of November.
Five years ago: President Donald Trump declared opioid abuse a national public health emergency and announced new steps to combat what he described as the worst drug crisis in U.S. history. At the request of the FBI and CIA, the president blocked the release of hundreds of records on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy while allowing 2,800 other files to come out. After a decade as manager that produced just one World Series title, Joe Girardi was fired by the New York Yankees.
One year ago: The U.S. moved a step closer to expanding COVID-19 vaccinations for millions more children as government advisers endorsed kid-size doses of Pfizer’s shots for 5- to 11-year-olds. A San Francisco-area police officer, Andrew Hall, was convicted of assault with a firearm in the 2018 fatal shooting of an unarmed mentally ill man, Laudemer Arboleda, who was shot nine times while driving away from police. (Hall was sentenced to six years in prison.) Jorge Soler became the first player to begin a World Series with a home run and the Atlanta Braves beat the Houston Astros 6-2 in Game 1; Braves pitcher Charlie Morton left the game with a broken leg from a batted ball by Yuli Gurriel. Satirist Mort Sahl, who helped revolutionize stand-up comedy during the Cold War with his running commentary on politicians and current events, died at his California home at the age of 94.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor Jaclyn Smith is 77. TV host Pat Sajak is 76. Hillary Rodham Clinton is 75. Musician Bootsy Collins is 71. Actor James Pickens Jr. is 70. Rock musician David Was is 70. Rock musician Keith Strickland (The B-52s) is 69. Actor Lauren Tewes is 69. Actor D.W. Moffett is 68. Actor-singer Rita Wilson is 66. Actor Patrick Breen is 62. Actor Dylan McDermott is 61. Actor Cary Elwes is 60. Singer Natalie Merchant is 59. Actor Steve Valentine is 56. Country singer Keith Urban is 55. Actor Tom Cavanagh is 54. Actor Rosemarie DeWitt is 51. Actor Anthony Rapp is 51. Writer-producer Seth MacFarlane (TV: “Family Guy”) is 49. TV news correspondent Paula Faris is 47. Actor Lennon Parham is 47. Actor Florence Kasumba is 46. Actor Hal Ozsan is 46. Actor Jon Heder is 45. Singer Mark Barry (BBMak) is 44. Actor Jonathan Chase is 43. Actor Folake Olowofoyeku (foh-LAH’-kay oh-low-wow-foh-YAY’-koo) is 39. Olympic silver medal figure skater Sasha Cohen is 38. Rapper Schoolboy Q is 36. Actor Beulah Koale (TV: “Hawaii Five-0”) is 31.