This Day In History, October 6th

What happened on this day in history: The inventor of the Super Soaker is born, Instagram is released, and more historic events from October 6th.

1866: The Reno Brothers Commit America’s First Train Robbery

What Happened Today In History October 6

Public DomainFrank Reno, one of the Reno brothers.

John and Simeon Reno rob an Ohio and Mississippi Railway train in Jackson County, Indiana. The first bandits to target a moving train, the Reno brothers made off with $13,000. They were the first robbers, but far from the last, to target trains moving across the isolated territory of the Wild West in the decades to come.

1892: Alfred, Lord Tennyson Dies

Alfred, Lord Tennyson dies in Sussex, England, at the age of 83. A respected poet during the Victorian age, Tennyson penned poems like “In Memoriam,” Idylls of the King,” and “The Charge of the Light Brigade.” From 1850 until his death, Tennyson was Queen Victoria’s poet laureate.

1949: Lonnie Johnson Is Born

Lonnie Johnson

Thomas S. England/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty ImagesLonnie Johnson with his invention.

Lonnie Johnson is born in Mobile, Alabama. The inventor of the Super Soaker, Johnson came up with the iconic water gun in 1982 while working as a NASA engineer. It became a wildly popular toy and has generated more than $1 billion in sales since hitting the shelves in 1990.

2002: Shawn Hornbeck Is Kidnapped

Shawn Hornbeck is kidnapped by Mike Devlin while riding his bike in Richwoods, Missouri. Devlin had bumped the 11-year-old Hornbeck with his truck before snatching the boy. For four years, Devlin would imprison Hornbeck in his apartment, physically and emotionally abusing the boy. In 2007, Devlin used Hornbeck to kidnap another boy, Ben Ownby, from Beaufort, Missouri. Tips eventually led to the identification of Devlin’s truck, and the FBI soon located his apartment as well. During a raid, police found both Hornbeck and Ownby. Their rescue became known as the “Missouri Miracle.”

2010: Instagram Launches

The Instagram app is released for the first time in the Apple Store. Three months earlier, Instagram co-founder Mike Krieger posted the first Instagram photo — of South Beach Harbor at Pier 38 in San Francisco. Since then, the app has been acquired by Meta and downloaded more than 3 billion times.