Today in History



Photo by Andrey Grushnikov on


Brooklyn native Al Capone is brought to justice after a violent criminal career, but it’s not a rival’s bullets or a murder conviction that finally does him in. The 32-year-old known as ‘Scarface’ is convicted on tax evasion charges and sentenced to a prison term of 11 years.


After 600 prisoners attempt a daring escape from the Nazi extermination camp Sobibór, it’s ordered shut down by Holocaust architect Heinrich Himmler. Efforts will be taken to hide the site, but later excavation will uncover the machinery of death that killed upwards of 250,000 Jews.


Personal computers get down to business as VisiCalc is released for the Apple II. It will go on to sell about a million copies, with versions for the IBM PC and other platforms added in the coming years. The day will later be known as National Spreadsheet Day.


Just minutes before Game 3 of the World Series is scheduled to start in San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, a violent earthquake hits Northern California, severely pounding the San Francisco Bay Area. The quake collapses bridges and freeways, causes $7 billion in damage, nearly 4,000 injuries, and 67 deaths.

Number One Song in 1989


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