On this day, May 10 …
1924: J. Edgar Hoover is named acting director of the Bureau of Investigation (later known as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, or FBI).
Also on this day:
- 1865: Confederate President Jefferson Davis is captured by Union forces in Irwinville, Ga.
- 1869: A golden spike is driven in Promontory, Utah, marking the completion of the first transcontinental railroad in the United States.
- 1933: The Nazis stage massive public book burnings in Germany.
- 1940: During World War II, German forces begin invading the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium and France. The same day, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigns, and Winston Churchill forms a new government.
- 1963: The Rolling Stones record their first single for Decca Records in London, covering Chuck Berry’s “Come On” and “I Want to Be Loved” by Willie Dixon.
- 1975: Sony begins selling its Betamax home videocassette recorder in Japan.
- 1994: Nelson Mandela takes the oath of office in Pretoria to become South Africa’s first black president.
- 1994: The state of Illinois executes serial killer John Wayne Gacy for the murders of 33 young men and boys.
- 1996: Two Marine helicopters collide in the dark and crash in a swamp at Camp Lejeune, N.C., during a U.S.-British training exercise, killing 14 people.
- 2013: The IRS apologizes for what it acknowledges was “inappropriate” targeting of conservative political groups during the 2012 election to see if they were violating their tax-exempt status.
- 2013: U.S. government scientists say worldwide levels of carbon dioxide hit a milestone, reaching an amount never before encountered by humans.
- 2014: First Lady Michelle Obama, delivering the weekly presidential radio and Internet address in place of her husband, decries the kidnapping of scores of Nigerian schoolgirls by the group Boko Haram.
- 2014: Michael Sam is picked by the St. Louis Rams in the seventh round of the NFL Draft, becoming the first openly gay player drafted by a pro football team.
- 2018: President Trump announces that he would meet in Singapore with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un on June 12; the announcement comes hours after Trump hosts a welcome-home for three Americans who had been held by Kim’s government.