TODAY IN HISTORY
Today is Monday, Feb. 24, the 55th day of 2014. There are 310 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Feb. 24, 1864, according to the National Park Service, the first Union prisoners arrived at the Confederates’ Andersonville prison camp in Georgia. During its 14 months of existence, the overcrowded camp ended up holding some 45,000 men, more than four times its intended capacity; nearly 13,000 prisoners perished from disease, starvation or exposure.
On this date:
In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII issued an edict outlining his calendar reforms. (The Gregorian Calendar is the calendar in general use today.)
In 1803, in its Marbury v. Madison decision, the Supreme Court established judicial review of the constitutionality of statutes.
In 1821, Mexican rebels proclaimed the Plan de Iguala, their declaration of independence from Spain.
In 1868, the U.S. House of Representatives impeached President Andrew Johnson following his attempted dismissal of Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton; Johnson was later acquitted by the Senate.
In 1912, the American Jewish women’s organization Hadassah was founded in New York City.
In 1920, the German Workers Party, which later became the Nazi Party, met in Munich to adopt its platform.
In 1938, the first nylon bristle toothbrush, manufactured by DuPont under the name “Dr. West’s Miracle Toothbrush,” went on sale. (Previously, toothbrush bristles were made from animal hair.)
In 1955, the Cole Porter musical “Silk Stockings” opened at the Imperial Theater on Broadway.
In 1961, the Federal Communications Commission authorized the nation’s first full-scale trial of pay television in Hartford, Conn.
In 1988, in a ruling that expanded legal protections for parody and satire, the Supreme Court unanimously overturned a $150,000 award that the Rev. Jerry Falwell had won against Hustler magazine and publisher Larry Flynt.
In 1989, a state funeral was held in Japan for Emperor Hirohito, who had died the month before at age 87.
In 1994, entertainer Dinah Shore died in Beverly Hills, Calif., five days before turning 78.
Ten years ago: Democrat John Kerry defeated John Edwards by large margins in Utah and Idaho, and also won in Hawaii, where Edwards ran third behind Dennis Kucinich. President George W. Bush urged approval of a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages. A 6.5-magnitude earthquake devastated an isolated region of northern Morocco, killing more than 600 people. Character actor John Randolph died in Hollywood at age 88.
Five years ago: In the first prime-time speech of his term, President Barack Obama appeared before Congress to sketch an agenda that began with jobs, then broadened quickly to include a stable credit system, better schools, health care reform, reliable domestic sources of energy and an end to the war in Iraq. Earlier in the day, President Obama held an 80-minute private talk with Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso.
One year ago: Pope Benedict XVI bestowed his final Sunday blessing of his pontificate on a cheering crowd in St. Peter’s Square. At the Academy Awards, “Argo” won best picture while Ang Lee was named best director for “Life of Pi”; Daniel Day-Lewis won best actor for “Lincoln” while Jennifer Lawrence received the best actress award for “Silver Linings Playbook.” Jimmie Johnson won his second Daytona 500, beating his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr., who made a late move to finish second. Danica Patrick, the first woman to win the pole, finished eighth.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor Abe Vigoda is 93. Actor Steven Hill is 92. Actress Emmanuelle Riva is 87. Actor-singer Dominic Chianese is 83. Movie composer Michel Legrand is 82. Opera singer-director Renata Scotto is 80. Former Sen. Joseph Lieberman, I-Conn., is 72.
Actor Barry Bostwick is 69. Actor Edward James Olmos is 67. Singer-writer-producer Rupert Holmes is 67. Rock singer-musician George Thorogood is 64. Actress Debra Jo Rupp is 63. Actress Helen Shaver is 63. News anchor Paula Zahn is 58.
Baseball Hall of Famer Eddie Murray is 58. Country singer Sammy Kershaw is 56. Actor Mark Moses is 56. Singer Michelle Shocked is 52. Movie director Todd Field is 50.
Actor Billy Zane is 48. Actress Bonnie Somerville is 40. Rhythm-and-blues singer Brandon Brown (Mista) is 31. Rock musician Matt McGinley (Gym Class Heroes) is 31. Actor Wilson Bethel is 30.