Today In History

In 1743 The first recorded town meeting in America was held at Boston's Faneuil Hall.

In 1794 Eli Whitney patented the cotton gin, which revolutionized America's cotton industry.

In 1812 The U.S. Congress authorized war bonds to finance the War of 1812.

In 1883 German political philosopher Karl Marx died in London.

In 1900 U.S. currency went on the gold standard.

In 1903 The first national bird reservation was established in Sebastian, Florida.

In 1923 President Warren Harding became the first U.S. president to file an income tax return.

In 1939, the Republic of Czechoslovakia was dissolved, opening the Nazi occupation.

In 1950 The FBI's "10 Most Wanted Fugitives" program began.

In 1951 During the Korean War, United Nations forces recaptured Seoul.

In 1964 A jury in Dallas found Jack Ruby guilty of murdering Lee Harvey Oswald, the accused assassin of President John F. Kennedy.

In 1965 Israel's cabinet formally approved the establishment of diplomatic relations with West Germany.

In 1967 President Kennedy's body was moved from a temporary grave to a permanent memorial site at Arlington National Cemetery.

In 1968 The last episode of "Batman" aired on ABC-TV.

In 1972 Burt Reynolds became the first male nude centerfold when the April edition of Cosmopolitan magazine hit the newsstands.

In 1975 Actress Susan Hayward died at age 56.

In 1980, a Polish airliner crashed while making an emergency landing near Warsaw, killing all 87 people aboard, including 22 U.S. amateur boxing team members.

In 1983 OPEC cut oil prices for the first time in 23 years.

In 1984 George McGovern dropped out of the Democratic presidential race after finishing third in Massachusetts in the Super Tuesday primaries.

In 1985 U.S. and Soviet negotiators began their first entire session of renewed arms talks in Geneva, Switzerland.

In 1986 European Space Agency's Giotto flies by Halley's Comet (540 km).

In 1986 Robert McDonald set the record for going without sleep at 453 hours, 40 minutes (19 days).

In 1986 President Reagan announced he had sent Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev a "new, particular and far-reaching proposal" on nuclear testing.

In 1987 The U.S. Coast Guard rescued 37 Soviets from a sinking freighter.

In 1988 Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir arrived in Washington with new ideas for Middle East peace talks.

In 1989 President Bush banned imports of Uzi, AK-47, and some other types of assault weapons after a Chinese-made AK-47 was used in a Stockton schoolyard massacre killing five children.

In 1989 Lebanese hijacker Fawaz Younis was convicted in federal court of commandeering a Jordanian airliner and holding 70 hostages, including two Americans.

In 1990 The Soviet Congress elected Mikhail S. Gorbachev to the country's new, powerful presidency.

In 1990, the U.S., Soviet Union, Britain, France, and West and East Germany held their first formal meeting to reunify the German states.

In 1991, four white police officers were indicted by a Los Angeles grand jury connected with beating a black motorist, Rodney King.

In 1991 A British court reversed the convictions of the "Birmingham Six," who had spent 16 years in prison for an Irish Republican Army bombing, and ordered them released.

In 1994 Associate Attorney General Webster Hubbell, a longtime friend of President and Mrs. Clinton, resigned because of controversy over billings he'd charged while in private law practice.

In 1994 Secretary of State Warren Christopher wrapped up three days of meetings with Chinese leaders, who rejected attempts to link their human rights record with preferred trade status.

In 1995 American astronaut Norman Thagard became the first American to enter space aboard a Russian rocket.

In 1996 Steve Forbes dropped his $30 million quests for the Republican presidential nomination.

In 1997 President Clinton was hospitalized with a knee injury caused by a freak stumble at the Florida home of golfer Greg Norman.

In 1998 An earthquake left 10,000 homeless in southeastern Iran.

In 1998 India's Congress party chose Sonia Gandhi, the Italian-born widow of assassinated prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, as its new president.

In 1998 An earthquake killed at least five people and left thousands homeless in southeastern Iran.

In 2000 Defending champion Doug Swingley drives his dog team to victory in the Iditarod race.

In 2001 Inspectors tightened U.S. defenses against the foot-and-mouth disease a day after a confirmed case in France.

In 2003 Actor Robert Blake was released from jail on $1.5 million bails, 11 months after being arrested on charges of murdering his wife, Bonny Lee Bakley.

In 2004 Russian President Vladimir Putin won a second term.

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