On This Day: Bombings target civil rights activists in Birmingham

May 11 (UPI) — On this date in history:

In 1858, Minnesota joined the United States as the 32nd state.

In 1862, the Confederate navy destroyed its iron-clad vessel Merrimac to prevent it from falling into the hands of advancing Union forces.

In 1910, Glacier National Park in Montana was created by an act of Congress.

In 1924, Karl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler merged their companies, forming Mercedes-Benz.

In 1928, the first regularly scheduled television programs were begun by station WGY in Schenectady, N.Y.

In 1963, bombings in Birmingham, Ala., against non-violent Civil Rights campaigners triggers a crisis which leads to the involvement of federal troops.

In 1969, in one of the more infamous and bloody battles of the Vietnam War, U.S. troops seized Dong Ap Bia mountain, commonly known as “Hamburger Hill.”

In 1987, Emmanuel Vitria died in Marseilles in southern France at age 67, 18 years after receiving a transplanted human heart. He was the longest-surviving heart transplant patient at that time.

In 1996, a ValuJet airliner crashed in the Florida Everglades, killing 110 people.

In 1997, world chess champion Garry Kasparov was defeated by a computer, IBM’s Deep Blue, in a six-game match in New York.

In 2006, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told students in Indonesia that Israel was an “evil regime” that would soon be “annihilated.”

In 2009, Gen. David McKiernan, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, was fired and replaced by Lt. Gen. Stanley McChrystal. McChrystal resigned a year later following a damning article in Rolling Stone.

In 2010, in discussing sexual-abuse scandals, Pope Benedict XVI said the Roman Catholic Church was undergoing its greatest persecution because of “sin in the church.” He called the situation “frightening.”

In 2014, authorities found the body of a third occupant of a hot-air balloon that hit power lines and crashed in Virginia two days earlier. The pilot and two passengers died in the accident at the Mid-Atlantic Balloon Festival.

.