Today in History

Today is Wednesday, March 4, the 63rd day of 2015. There are 302 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On March 4, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated for a second term of office; with the end of the Civil War in sight, Lincoln declared, "With malice toward none, with charity for all."

On this date:

In 1789, the Constitution of the United States went into effect as the first Federal Congress met in New York. (The lawmakers then adjourned for lack of a quorum.)

In 1791, Vermont became the 14th state.

In 1861, Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated as the 16th president of the United States. The Confederate States of America adopted as its flag the original version of the Stars and Bars.

In 1913, the "Buffalo nickel" officially went into circulation.

In 1925, President Calvin Coolidge's inauguration was broadcast live on 21 radio stations coast-to-coast.

In 1930, Coolidge Dam in Arizona was dedicated by its namesake, former President Calvin Coolidge.

In 1940, Kings Canyon National Park in California was established.

In 1952, Ronald Reagan and Nancy Davis were married in San Fernando Valley, California.

In 1964, Teamsters president James Hoffa and three co-defendants were found guilty by a federal court in Chattanooga, Tennessee, of jury tampering.

In 1974, the first issue of People magazine, then called People Weekly, was published by Time-Life Inc.; on the cover was actress Mia Farrow, then co-starring in "The Great Gatsby."

In 1989, Time Inc. and Warner Communications Inc. announced plans for a huge media merger.

In 1998, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that sexual harassment at work can be illegal even when the offender and victim are of the same gender.

Ten years ago: American troops in Iraq fired on a car carrying just-freed Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena (zhoo-lee-AH'-nah ZGRAY'-nah), killing Nicola Calipari, the intelligence officer who'd helped negotiate her release and injuring the reporter. Martha Stewart, imprisoned for five months for her role in a stock scandal, left federal prison to start five months of home confinement. President George W. Bush nominated career scientist Stephen L. Johnson to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

Five years ago: A Hollister, California, man with a history of severe psychiatric problems opened fire at a Pentagon security checkpoint; John Patrick Bedell, 36, wounded two police officers before being killed by police. Two Germans and two Turkish men were convicted in Duesseldorf over a foiled 2007 plot to attack U.S. targets in Germany and given prison sentences ranging up to 12 years. Turkey, a key Muslim ally of the United States, angrily withdrew its ambassador after a congressional committee approved a resolution branding the World War I killing of Armenians a genocide. (The measure, however, was never taken up by the 111th Congress.)

One year ago: President Barack Obama submitted a $3.9 trillion budget for fiscal 2015. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met in Ukraine with the new government's leaders in a show of support following Russia's military incursion into the Crimean Peninsula.

Today's Birthdays: Actress Paula Prentiss is 77. Movie director Adrian Lyne is 74. Rock musician Chris Squire (Yes) is 67. Singer Shakin' Stevens is 67. Author James Ellroy is 67. Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry is 65. Singer Chris Rea is 64. Actor/rock singer-musician Ronn Moss is 63. Actress Kay Lenz is 62. Musician Emilio Estefan is 62. Movie director Scott Hicks is 62. Actress Catherine O'Hara is 61. Actor Mykelti (MY'-kul-tee) Williamson is 58. Actress Patricia Heaton is 57. Actor Steven Weber is 54. Rock musician Jason Newsted is 52. Actress Stacy Edwards is 50. Rapper Grand Puba is 49. Rock musician Patrick Hannan (The Sundays) is 49. Rock singer Evan Dando (Lemonheads) is 48. Actress Patsy Kensit is 47. Gay rights activist Chaz Bono is 46. Actress Andrea Bendewald is 45. Actor Nick Stabile (stah-BEEL') is 45. Rock musician Fergal Lawler (The Cranberries) is 44. Country singer Jason Sellers is 44. Jazz musician Jason Marsalis is 38. Actress Jessica Heap is 32. TV personality Whitney Port is 30. Actress Margo Harshman is 29. Actor Josh Bowman is 27. Actress Andrea Bowen is 25. Actress Jenna Boyd is 22.

Thought for Today: "I do not understand the world, but I watch its progress." — Katherine Anne Porter, American author (1894-1980).

(Above Advance for Use Wednesday, March 4)

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