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13th Amendment to the Constitution declared in effect by Seward, 1865

By The Associated Press

Today is Friday, Dec. 18, the 353rd day of 2020. There are 13 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Dec. 18, 1865, the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery, was declared in effect by Secretary of State William H. Seward.

On this date:

In 1915, President Woodrow Wilson, whose first wife, Ellen, had died the year before, married Edith Bolling Galt, a widow, at her Washington home.

In 1917, Congress passed the 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibiting ìthe manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquorsî and sent it to the states for ratification.

In 1940, Adolf Hitler signed a secret directive ordering preparations for a Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union. (Operation Barbarossa was launched in June 1941.)

In 1944, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the government’s wartime evacuation of people of Japanese descent from the West Coast while at the same time ruling that conceded loyalî Americans of Japanese ancestry could not continue to be detained.

In 1956, Japan was admitted to the United Nations.

In 1957, the Shippingport Atomic Power Station in Pennsylvania, the first nuclear facility to generate electricity in the United States, went on line. (It was taken out of service in 1982.)

In 1987, Ivan F. Boesky was sentenced to three years in prison for his role in a major Wall Street insider-trading scandal. (Boesky served about two years of his sentence).

In 1998, the House debated articles of impeachment against President Bill Clinton. South Carolina carried out the nation’s 500th execution since capital punishment resumed in 1977.

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