Way back when: Today in history
BY GENE CURTIS
Sunday, October 07, 2012
10/07/12 at 2:35 AM
1954 - Met hires Anderson
Marian Anderson, acclaimed as one of the greatest singers of the 20th century, signed a contract to perform at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, the first black singer hired by the opera. A contralto, she performed Jan. 7, 1955, as Ulrica in Verdi's "Un ballo in maschera." Anderson had performed to a crowd of more than 75,000 at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington and millions more in a radio audience in 1939 after being refused permission to sing to an integrated audience in Constitution Hall by the Daughters of the American Revolution, the building owners. She later sang at the inaugurations of Presidents Dwight Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy and served as a delegate to the United Nations Human Rights Committee. She died in 1993 at age 96.
1965 - 'Good morning, sir!'
U.S. Army infantrymen who failed to salute superior officers at 4th Division Headquarters in Vietnam were being sent to line duty as punishment, Maj. Gen. Charles P. Stone, the commanding general, said. But the practice was stopped the next day after officials in Washington said the Army was embarrassed by the salute-or-fight policy - but there was no clarification in Washington of who acted to get the order canceled. Before the cancellation, officers in the division headquarters were overwhelmed with salutes and "Good morning, sir!" greetings.
2005 - Strike back begins
U.S. and British forces aimed Tomahawk cruise missiles and bombs at Osama bin Laden's training camps in Afghanistan in an operation known as "Enduring Freedom" in response to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks that killed thousands in New York City, Washington and on a farm in Pennsylvania. The assault was accompanied by air drops of thousands of vitamin-enriched food rations for needy civilians and a ground-based attack by Afghan opposition forces against the ruling Taliban.
2008 - Get money moving
The Federal Reserve announced a plan to buy massive amounts of short-term debt, known as commercial paper, to get credit markets moving again. President George W. Bush, speaking in San Antonio, said the rescue package was designed to unlock the country's frozen credit markets "to get money moving again" through the economy.
Marian Anderson was the first black singer hired by the Met. AP file