BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS: Today in History – On April 21, 2016, Prince, one of the most inventive and influential musicians of modern times, was found dead at his home in suburban Minneapolis; he was 57.

On this date:

In 1649, the Maryland Toleration Act, providing for freedom of worship for all Christians, was passed by the Maryland assembly.

In 1836, an army of Texans led by Sam Houston defeated the Mexicans at San Jacinto, assuring Texas independence.

In 1910, author Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, died in Redding, Connecticut, at age 74.

In 1926, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II was born in Mayfair, London; she was the first child of The Duke and Duchess of York, who later became King George VI and the Queen Mother.

In 1930, fire broke out inside the overcrowded Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus, killing 332 inmates.

In 1975, with Communist forces closing in, South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu resigned after nearly 10 years in office and fled the country.

In 1976, clinical trials of the swine flu vaccine began in Washington, DC.

In 1980, Rosie Ruiz was the first woman to cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon; however, she was later exposed as a fraud. (Canadian Jacqueline Gareau was named the actual winner of the women’s race.)

In 1998, astronomers announced in Washington that they had discovered possible signs of a new family of planets orbiting a star 220 light-years away, the clearest evidence to date of worlds forming beyond our solar system.

In 2012, Charles W. “Chuck” Colson described as the “evil genius” of the Nixon administration who served seven months in prison for a Watergate-related conviction, then spent the next 35 years ministering to prison inmates, died at age 80.

In 2013, Joe Scarborough, a 50-year-old self-employed electrical contractor, rolled the first 900 series in Professional Bowlers Association history — three straight perfect games.

In 2015, an Egyptian criminal court sentenced ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi to 20 years in prison over the killing of protesters in 2012. (Morsi collapsed and died during trial on espionage charges in June 2019.)

In 2018, actor Verne Troyer, best known for his role as “Mini-Me” in the “Austin Powers” movies, died at age of 49.

In 2020, researchers reported that a malaria drug that had been widely touted by President Donald Trump for treating the coronavirus showed no benefit in large study of its use in U.S. veterans hospitals.

In 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed victory in the battle for the Ukrainian city of Mariupol, even as he ordered his troops not to take the risk of storming the giant steel plant where the last Ukrainian defenders were holed up.

Today in History

Top Feature Photo: Rock singer Prince performs at the Forum in Inglewood, Calif, during his opening show, Feb 18, 1985 – AP Photo/Liu Heung Shing