Aug. 25 (UPI) -- On this date in history:
In 1609, Galileo Galilei exhibited his first telescope in Venice.
In 1718, the city of New Orleans was founded.
In 1875, Matthew Webb, a 27-year-old British merchant navy captain, became the first person known to successfully swim the English Channel.
In 1944, allied forces and the French resistance freed the city of Paris from German occupation during World War II.
In 1985, Samantha Smith, 13, was killed with her father and six other people in a plane crash in Maine. Samantha's 1983 letter to Soviet President Yuri Andropov about her fear of nuclear war earned her a visit to the Soviet Union.
In 1989, Voyager 2, after a 4 billion-mile journey, made its closest pass over Neptune, sending back images of southern lights and its moon, Triton, to Earth.
In 2006, Pulkova Airlines Flight 612 crashed near the Russian border in Ukraine, killing 171 people.
In 2009, U.S. Sen. Edward "Ted" Kennedy, D-Mass., a liberal fixture in the Senate for 46 years, died of brain cancer at the age of 77.