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Today in History

By The Associated Press

Today is Thursday, March 4, the 63rd day of 2021. There are 302 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On March 4, 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt took office as America’s 32nd president.

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 1797, John Adams was inaugurated the second president of the United States.

In 1863, the Idaho Territory was created.

In 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.”

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 actor Mia Farrow.

In 1981, a jury in Salt Lake City convicted Joseph Paul Franklin, an avowed racist and serial killer, of violating the civil rights of two Black men, Ted Fields and David Martin, who’d been shot to death. (Franklin received two life sentences for this crime; he was executed in 2013 for the 1977 murder of a Jewish man, Gerald Gordon.)

In 1987, President Ronald Reagan addressed the nation on the Iran-Contra affair, acknowledging that his overtures to Iran had “deteriorated” into an arms-for-hostages deal.

In 1994, in New York, four extremists were convicted of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing that killed six people and injured more than a thousand. Actor-comedian John Candy died in Durango, Mexico, at age 43.

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.

In 2015, the Justice Department cleared Darren Wilson, a white former Ferguson, Missouri, police officer, in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, a Black 18-year-old, but also issued a scathing report calling for sweeping changes in city law enforcement practices.

In 2018, former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter were found unconscious on a bench in the southwestern English city of Salisbury; both survived what British authorities said was a murder attempt using a nerve agent.

Ten years ago: NASA launched its Glory satellite from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on what was supposed to have been a three-year mission to analyze how airborne particles affect Earth’s climate; however, the rocket carrying Glory plummeted into the southern Pacific several minutes after liftoff.

One year ago: The House easily passed an $8.3 billion measure aimed at speeding the development of coronavirus vaccines, paying for containment operations and beefing up preparedness. Federal health officials investigated a suburban Seattle nursing home at the center of a coronavirus outbreak. Italy closed all schools and universities and barred fans from sporting events. The Dow Jones Industrial Average soared more than 1,100 points as governments and central banks around the globe took more aggressive measures to deal with the virus and its effects on the economy.

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