Today in history: April 15

/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Saturday, April 15, the 105th day of 2006. There are 260 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
In the early hours of April 15, 1912, the British luxury liner Titanic sank in the North Atlantic off Newfoundland, less than three hours after striking an iceberg. About 1,500 people died.

On this date:
In 1850, the city of San Francisco was incorporated.

In 1861, three days after the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter, President Lincoln declared a state of insurrection and called out Union troops.

In 1865, President Lincoln died, several hours after being shot at Ford’s Theater in Washington by John Wilkes Booth. Andrew Johnson became the nation’s 17th president.

In 1945, during World War II, British and Canadian troops liberated the Nazi concentration camp Bergen-Belsen.

In 1945, President Roosevelt, who had died April 12, was buried at the Roosevelt family home in Hyde Park, N.Y.

In 1980, existentialist philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre died in Paris at the age of 74.

In 1986, the United States launched an air raid against Libya in response to the bombing of a discotheque in Berlin on April 5; Libya says 37 people, mostly civilians, were killed.

In 1989, 95 people died in a crush of soccer fans at Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, England.

In 1990, actress Greta Garbo died in New York at age 84.

In 1998, Pol Pot, the notorious leader of the Khmer Rouge, died at age 73, evading prosecution for the deaths of 2 million Cambodians.

Ten years ago: President Clinton began a weeklong, round-the-world trip, heading for a three-day visit to Japan after a brief stopover in South Korea. Funeral services were held in Pescadero, Calif., for Jessica Dubroff, the 7-year-old girl who died trying to become the youngest person to pilot a plane across America.

Five years ago: U.N. investigators arrested Bosnian Serb army officer Dragan Obrenovic in connection with the Serbian Army’s slaughter of some 7,000 Muslim men and boys. (Obrenovic later pleaded guilty to five war crimes charges and testified against his one-time superior officers; he was sentenced to 17 years in prison.) Punk rock icon Joey Ramone died in New York at age 49.

One year ago: A Paris hotel fire killed 24 people, many of them African immigrants. A Russian rocket blasted off from the Central Asian steppes, catapulting three astronauts on a two-day journey to the International Space Station.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor Michael Ansara is 84. Country singer Roy Clark is 73. Rock singer-guitarist Dave Edmunds is 62. Actress Lois Chiles is 59. Actress Amy Wright is 56. Columnist Heloise is 55. Actress-screenwriter Emma Thompson is 47. Singer Samantha Fox is 40. Rock musician Ed O’Brien (Radiohead) is 38. Actor Flex Alexander is 36. Actor Danny Pino is 32. Actress Emma Watson is 16.

Thought for Today: “Political history is far too criminal and pathological to be a fit subject of study for the young. Children should acquire their heroes and villains from fiction.” — W.H. Auden, British poet (1907-1973).