On this Day May 14
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1804 – The Lewis & Clark expedition leaves St. Louis, Missouri, on a mission to explore the Northwest from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean. President Thomas Jefferson commissioned his private secretary Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, an army captain, to make the journey.
1904 – The Third Olympiad of the modern era, and the first Olympic Games to be held in the United States, opens in St. Louis, Missouri. However, it is far from the international affair of more recent deacdes. Only 12 countries attend, with Americans accounting for 523 of the 630 participating athletes.
1955 – The Soviet Union and seven Eastern European countries sign a treaty establishing the Warsaw Pact, a mutual defense organization that puts the Soviets in command of the armed forces of its partners. The move is aimed at counterbalancing the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). The Pact officially disbands in 1991 following the breakup of the Soviet Union.
1968 – John Lennon and Paul McCartney are guests on NBC’s “Tonight Show” with Joe Garagiola guest-hosting for Johnny Carson. The conversation includes some light-hearted banter about meditation, the forming of Apple Corps. and songwriting.
1988 – Led Zeppelin band members reunite for the Atlantic Records 40th anniversary party at Madison Square Garden in New York, appearing with Jason Bonham, son of John Bonham, on drums. Other performing acts include Foreigner, Crosby, Stills and Nash, Genesis, Emerson Lake and Palmer, Wilson Pickett and Ben E. King.
1998 – Known as “Ol’ Blue Eyes” and “The Chairman of the Board,” legendary crooner Frank Sinatra dies at the age of 82. His entertainment career spanned half a century and left such an impression in American culture that “Rolling Stone” magazine labeled him “indisputably the 20th century’s greatest singer of popular song.”