Today In History...
In 1773 Jeanne Baptiste Pointe de Sable founded a the settlement now known as Chicago.
In 1850 The first $20 Gold piece is issued.
In 1868 The U.S. congress abolishes the manufacturers tax.
In 1888 The "Great White Hurricane" drops as much as 5 feet of snow on parts of New England.
In 1896 Spitting is banned in New York City.
In 1903 The American League officially approves the New York Highlanders, now the Yankees.
In 1912 Juliette Gordon Low founded the Girl Guides in Savannah, GA, which later became the Girl Scouts of America.
In 1912 Captain Albert Berry performs the first parachute jump from an airplane.
In 1925 Chinese revolutionary leader Sun Yat-sen dies.
In 1930 Mohandas Gandhi begins a 200-mile march protesting the British salt tax.
In 1932 The so-called "Swedish Match King," Ivan Kreuger, commits suicide in Paris, leaving behind a worthless financial empire.
In 1933 President Franklin D. Roosevelt begins the first of his "fireside chats" broadcast on national radio.
In 1938 The "Anschluss" takes place as Germans enter Austria, to complete what Adolph Hitler described as his mission to restore his homeland to the Third Reich.
In 1939 Pope Pius XII is crowned in ceremonies at the Vatican.
In 1940 Finland surrenders to the Soviet Union during World War II.
In 1947 President Truman establishes what became known as the "Truman Doctrine" to help Greece and Turkey resist Communism.
In 1951 Hank Ketcham's comic strip "Dennis The Menace" debuts.
In 1959 The U.S. House joins the Senate in approving statehood for Hawaii.
In 1974 "Wonder Woman" starring Lynda Carter debuts on ABC-TV.
In 1977 Egyptian leader Anwar Sadat pledges to regain Arab territory from Israel.
In 1980 A Chicago jury finds John Wayne Gacy guilty of murdering 33 men and boys. He was sentenced to death and executed in May, 1994.
In 1981 Soyuz T-4 carries 2 cosmonauts to Salyut 6 space station.
In 1981 Walter R.T. Witschey installs the world's largest sundial.
In 1983 Secretary of State George P. Shultz meets with Lebanese Foreign Minister Elie Salem, in hopes of getting foreign armies out of Lebanon.
In 1985 The U.S. and the Soviet Union open new arms control talks in Geneva by holding a "get-acquainted" session.
In 1986 Spaniards vote to keep their country in NATO in a surprise victory for Socialist Prime Minister Felipe Gonzalez.
In 1987 A federal judge in Washington dismisses lawsuits by Lt. Col. Oliver North seeking to stop an independent counsel's investigation of his role in the Iran-Contra affair.
In 1990 Vice President Quayle meets with Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega in Santiago, Chile, who promises to relinquish power to Violeta Chamorro, who had just won the presidential election.
In 1991 U.S. Secretary of State James A. Baker meets with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir and a Palestinian delegation as he continued a fact-finding mission.
In 1992 The U.N. Security Council stands firm in its demand that Iraq comply totally with Gulf War cease-fire resolutions.
In 1993 Janet Reno is sworn in as the U.S.'s first female attorney general.
In 1993 13 bombs explode in Bombay, India, killing more than 300 people.
In 1994 The Church of England ordains 32 women as priests.
In 1994 U.S. Secretary of State Warren Christopher holds discussions with Chinese leaders in Beijing that were marked by blunt exchanges on human rights.
In 1995 President Clinton declares 39 California counties disaster areas after storms and flooding battered two-thirds of the state.
In 1996 Republican Bob Dole sweeps the seven Super Tuesday primaries, gaining a virtual lock on the GOP presidential nomination.
In 1997 Nigeria charges exiled writer Wole Soyinka, a 1986 Nobel literature laureate, with treason.
In 1997 Authorities in Los Angeles arrest Mikail Markhasev as a suspect in the shooting death of Bill Cosby's son, Ennis.
In 1998 Astronomers debunk the warning that a mile-wide asteroid might collide with Earth, saying calculations were off by 600,000 miles.
In 1999 Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic all join NATO.
In 2000 In an unprecedented moment in the history of the church, Pope John Paul II asked God's forgiveness for the sins of Roman Catholics through the ages, including wrongs inflicted on Jews, women and minorities.
In 2001 A U.S. Navy jet mistakenly drops a bomb on a group of military personnel at a bombing range in Kuwait, killing five Americans and one New Zealander.
In 2001 Talk show host Morton Downey Jr. dies at age 68, and spy novelist Robert Ludlum passes away at age 73.
In 2002 Houston homemaker Andrea Yates is convicted of murder in the drowning deaths of her five children in the family bathtub. (She was later sentenced to life in prison.)
In 2003 Kidnap victim Elizabeth Smart is found after having been missing for nine months.
In 2013 The 2013 Papal conclave begins with no elected new Pope on the first day.