(Friday, May 5, 1865, 8:00 p.m.; during the American Civil War) — In what’s believed to be America’s first train robbery, a band of criminals derailed a St. Louis-bound train near North Bend, Ohio tonight and proceeded to rob the passengers and loot safes on board before getting away.
Video: 'Damn Yankees (OBC) - Those Were The Good Old Days'
(Thursday, May 5, 1955, 7:45 p.m. EDT) — Damn Yankees, a new musical based on the novel The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant by Douglass Wallop, opened tonight on Broadway at the 46th Street Theatre in New York. The production starred Ray Walston (Mr. Applegate) and Gwen Verdon (Lola).
(Thursday, May 5, 1955; during the Cold War) — The Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) became a sovereign state today when the United States, France, and Great Britain end their military occupation, which had begun with the end of World War II in 1945.
With Konrad Adenauer as chancellor (pictured above reading a paper), West Germany was given the right to rearm and become a full-fledged member of the western alliance against the Soviet Union.
(Saturday, May 5, 1945; part of the American Theater of World War II) — A Japanese balloon bomb exploded on Gearhart Mountain in southern Oregon today, killing Elsie Mitchell, the 26-year-old pregnant wife of a minister, and five of their Sunday school students (aged 11–14) in the only fatal attack of its kind during World War II.
Video: 'Monkey Trial Case Documentary' (May 5, 1925, at 11:57)
(Tuesday, May 5, 1925) — Schoolteacher John T. Scopes, 24, was charged today for violating Tennessee’s Butler Act, which prohibited the teaching of evolution in Tennessee schools. He would be tried in a case known as the Scopes Trial.
Video: 'Reagan at Bitburg May 5 1985) (Complete)' (coverage begins at 8:30 a.m. EDT)
(Sunday, May 5, 1985, 3:33 p.m. CEST) — U.S. President Ronald Reagan presided over a wreath-laying today at the base of a brick cemetery tower looming over the graves of nearly 2,000 German soldiers, including 49 SS troops.
Alluding to the controversy aroused by his visit to the cemetery, Reagan voiced regret in remarks at an American air base afterward that “old wounds have been reopened.”