1657 – Autopsy in Maryland
The first autopsy was performed to help a coroner’s jury reach a verdict in a murder trial. There was a question about whether a slave owner had killed a black slave.
1789 - First Supreme Court
President George Washington signs the Judiciary Act of 1789. It provided for a Supreme Court, as per Article 3 of the Constitution. The Supreme Court at that time consisted of 6 members. Upon signing the Act, President Washington appointed the six members of the court, with John Jay as Chief Justice.
1852 - First Powered and Controlled Flight
Henri Giffard demonstrated flight with a semi-rigid airship, called a dirigible. He flew 17 miles from Paris to Trappe and it took 3 hours. This was the first powered and controlled flight achieved. Giffard invented a steam engine part that made him rich, but suffered from depression and committed suicide in 1882.
1954 - Premier of “The Tonight Show”
Steve Allen was the first host of The Tonight Show, and hosted it for 3 years. It is the longest running entertainment show in the United States, and the third longest show running on NBC. Johnny Carson hosted the show for 30 years, from 1962 – 1992. On March 19, 2009, it became the first late night talk show to have a sitting President of the United States as a guest when President Obama visited.
1957 - President Uses Troops to Enforce Desegregation
Governor Orval Faubus of Arkansas tried deploying the National Guard to stop black students from attending the white schools. The Supreme Court, however, had already ruled that segregation was unconstitutional. President Eisenhower warned the Governor not to interfere, then finally sent in the US Army, and federalized the National Guard, taking that tool out of the Governors hands.
1960 - Launch of USS Enterprise
September 24, 1960 saw the launch of the first nuclear powered aircraft carrier, the USS Enterprise. She is the second oldest ship in commission, after the USS Constitution, but is slated for decommission in 2013. The Enterprise is the longest ship in the world, and the 11th heaviest.
1961 - Final “I Love Lucy”
After running for 10 years, the final showing of “I Love Lucy” aired on September 24, 1961. The end of the series is considered by critics to be lackluster. Lucille Ball, and Desi Arnaz, the real life married couple that starred in the series, were in real life having marriage problems, and by the end of the show refusing to talk to each other. Their marriage ended at the same time that the series did.
1968 - 60 Minutes Premiere
60 Minutes premiered on September 24, 1968 on CBS. It has racked up at least 78 Emmys, and has been a top rated show a lot of its life. In 2002 it was rated number six on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest Shows of All Time. It is the longest running Prime Time show in production, and the show with the longest run in the same time slot.