1865 Apr 26, Confederate Gen. Joseph E. Johnston surrendered the Army of Tennessee at Durham, NC, to Union Gen. W.T. Sherman. Sherman considered Judson Kilpatrick, his cavalry chief, ‘a hell of a damn fool.’ At Monroe’s Cross Roads, N.C., his carelessness and disobedience of orders proved Sherman’s point.
1951 Apr 26, Arnold Sommerfeld (b.1868), German theoretical physicist, died. He pioneered developments in atomic and quantum physics. His atomic model permitted the explanation of fine-structure spectral lines.
1961 Apr 26, Roger Maris of the New York Yankees hit the first of a record 61 home runs in a single season; the homer was off Detroit’s Paul Foytack at Tiger Stadium.
1969 Apr 26, Morihei Ueshiba (b.1883), Japanese martial arts master, died. He evolved aikido through a synthesis and repatterning of various Japanese martial arts forms. Ueshiba is remembered by his pupils as a master of the martial arts, whose studies transcended technical matters to include a moral and philosophical view of the world based around harmony in the face of aggression.
1984 Apr 26, Pres. Reagan arrived in China for the start of a 6-day visit.
1986 Apr 26, [William] Broderick Crawford (b.1911), actor (Highway Patrol), died.
1988 Apr 26, Vice President George Bush locked up the Republican presidential nomination with an easy win in the Pennsylvania primary. Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis won the Democratic contest.
1993 Apr 26, President Clinton signed an executive order imposing new economic sanctions against Yugoslavia after the Serbian leadership in Bosnia voted against accepting a U.N.-sponsored plan to end the war.
1997 Apr 26, In his Saturday radio address, President Clinton prepared for the opening of a community service summit by asking Congress to pay for a literacy drive for third-graders.
1999 Apr 26, The Clinton administration urged a one-year extension of the Oslo peace process and pressured Pres. Arafat not to declare an independent state on May 4.
1999 Apr 26, In India Pres. Narayanan dissolved the lower house of Parliament in order to call for new elections.
2002 Apr 26, David Gunn, who had run transit systems in New York City and Washington, was named president of Amtrak, the troubled national rail passenger service.
2005 Apr 26, President Vladimir Putin started the first visit to Egypt by a Russian head of state in more than 40 years, in an effort to reinforce Moscow’s political and economic ties with the Arab world.
2006 Apr 26, Argentina’s President Nestor Kirchner announced plans for a high-speed train from Buenos Aires to Cordoba. A contract for construction was signed in 2008.
2006 Apr 26, President Vladimir Putin ordered a giant new oil pipeline to be routed away from Lake Baikal, the world’s deepest lake and home to hundreds of unique species.
2007 Apr 26, Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin, Malaysia’s 13th king, formally ascended the throne, pledging to reign wisely and safeguard the sanctity of Islam in a ceremony marked by traditional Malay rites and imperial pageantry. Malaysia’s system allows each of its hereditary state rulers to take turns reigning as the country’s constitutional monarch for five years each.
2007 Apr 26, Nigeria’s main opposition party said it will not recognize or cooperate with any government formed as a result of last weekend’s presidential election, which was won by the party of outgoing PresidentOlusegun Obasanjo.
2008 Apr 26, Turkey’s PM Erdogan was in Syria in a bid to restart peace negotiations between Damascus and its Mideast foe, Israel.
2009 Apr 26, Ecuador held elections. President Rafael Correa, a feisty leftist popular for his social programs, was widely favored to win re-election. Correa won 51.2 percent of the vote in an eight-candidate field, making the leftist economist the first Ecuadorean president in 30 years to be chosen without a runoff vote.
2010 Apr 26, In Nepal Pushpa Kamal Dahal, the leader of the opposition Maoists, urged the public to support a nationwide street protest aimed at toppling the current government.
2010 Apr 26, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas signed a law banning Palestinians from working in Israeli settlements and selling settlement goods, with violators facing up to five years in prison and stiff fines.
2012 Apr 26, Jordan’s PM Awn Khasawneh (62) submitted his resignation to King Abdullah II, barely six months after he formed a government to bring in much-needed reforms. Khasawneh cited interference from the palace.
2013 Apr 26, Mohamed Mamdouh, an American citizen of Moroccan descent, was sentenced to 5 years in prison for plotting to blow up NYC synagogues. Mamdouh and co-defendant Ahmed Ferhani had been arrested in a police sting.
2014 Apr 26, Turkish President Abdullah Gul approved a controversial law expanding the powers of the spy agency, a move critics say will tighten the graft-tainted government’s control over state institutions.