On This Day: U.S. ship shoots down Iranian airliner

By UPI Staff  |  July 3, 2017 at 3:00 AM
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July 3 (UPI) -- On this date in history:

In 1608, French explorer Samuel de Champlain founded the Canadian town of Quebec.

In 1775, George Washington took command of the Continental Army at Cambridge, Mass.

In 1863, the Union army under the command of Gen. George Meade defeated Confederate forces commanded by Gen. Robert E. Lee at Gettysburg, Pa.

In 1915, J.P. Morgan Jr., son of renowned banker and financier J. P. Morgan, was shot twice in the groin by Eric Muenter, a German professor at Harvard University. Morgan survived the would-be assassination attempt.

In 1971, rock star Jim Morrison, 27, was found dead of heart failure in a bathtub in Paris.

In 1986, Rudy Vallee, one of the United States' most popular singers in the 1920s and '30s, died at the age of 84.

In 1988, during the Iran-Iraq War, missiles fired from the USS Vincennes brought down an Iranian airliner in the Persian Gulf, killing all 290 people aboard. The United States said the ship's crew had incorrectly identified the jetliner, believing it was an attacking Iranian fighter jet. Years later, the United States agreed to pay millions of dollars in reparations for what it called "a terrible human tragedy."

In 1996, Boris Yeltsin was re-elected president of Russia, defeating Gennadi Zyuganov in a runoff.

In 2009, Sarah Palin, who became a national figure as the Republican candidate for vice president in 2008, announced she was resigning as governor of Alaska with 17 months to go in her term.

File Photo by Brian Kersey/UPI

In 2010, at least 230 people were killed in an explosion sparked by a cigarette near an overturned oil tanker truck in the Republic of the Congo.

In 2012, actor Andy Griffith, most famous for his role as a wise, folksy sheriff in the long-running TV show that bore his name, died at his home in North Carolina. He was 86.

In 2013, the Egyptian military removed President Mohamed Morsi from office and announced it was suspending the constitution and planning new elections.

In 2014, the Dow Jones industrial average reached the 17,000 mark for the first time.

File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
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