Today is Wednesday, October 24th, the 297th day of the year. There are 68 days until the end of the year.
On this day:
In 1901, daredevil Anna Edson Taylor became the first person to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel. She emerged from the 175-foot fall without any injuries.
In 1931, the George Washington Bridge opened for traffic. The bridge connects New York and New Jersey.
In 1940, the 40-hour work week went into effect under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938.
In 1945, the United Nations was formally established with the ratification of the United Nations Charter.
In 1957, fashion designer Christian Dior died at the age of 52.
In 1962, the United States' blockade of Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis began.
In 1963, the Beatles began their first tour outside Great Britain.
In 1972, Baseball Hall-of-Famer Jackie Robinson died at the age of 53. He broke baseball's color barrier in 1947 and was also the first African-American elected to the Hall of Fame.
In 1987, Michael Jackson topped the charts with his hit song "Bad."
In 1989, popular television evangelist Jim Bakker was sentenced to 45 years in prison and fined $500 thousand following his conviction on 24 counts of fraud. He was released after serving only five years.
In 1989, actress Zsa Zsa Gabor was sentenced to 72 hours in jail, 120 hours of community service and $13 thousand in fines for slapping a police officer.
In 1991, "Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry died on this date.
In 1994, actor Raul Julia died at the age of 54. He played the role of Gomez Addams in the two "Addams Family" films.
In 1997, sportscaster Marv Albert was spared a jail sentence after a making a courtroom apology to the woman he had bitten during a sexual romp.
In 2005, Hurricane Wilma plowed into the state of Florida. The Category Three storm lashed the state with winds of 125-miles-an hour.
In 2005, civil rights icon Rosa Parks passed away in her sleep at her apartment in Detroit, Michigan.
In 2008, tragedy struck the family of singer and Oscar winning actress Jennifer Hudson. Hudson's mother and brother were found shot to death at the family's South Side Chicago home.
In 2015, legendary Hollywood actress Maureen O'Hara died at the age of 95.