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February 22, 2013

Today in History

Today is Friday, Feb. 22, the 53rd day of 2013. There are 312 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight in history:

On Feb. 22, 1732 (New Style date)@text5:, the first president of the United States, George Washington, was born in Westmoreland County in the Virginia Colony.

On this date:

In 1784@text5:, a U.S. merchant ship, the Empress of China, left New York for the Far East to trade goods with China.

In 1862@text5:, Jefferson Davis, already the provisional president of the Confederacy, was inaugurated for a six-year term following his election in November 1861.

In 1865@text5:, Tennessee adopted a new constitution which included the abolition of slavery.

In 1909@text5:, the Great White Fleet, a naval task force sent on a round-the-world voyage by President Theodore Roosevelt, returned after more than a year at sea.

In 1924@text5:, President Calvin Coolidge delivered the first radio broadcast from the White House as he addressed the country over 42 stations.

In 1935@text5:, it became illegal for airplanes to fly over the White House.

In 1943@text5:, Pan Am Flight 9035, a Boeing 314 flying boat, crashed while attempting to land in Lisbon, Portugal. Twenty-five people were killed; 14 survived, including actress-singer Jane Froman.

In 1959@text5:, the inaugural Daytona 500 race was held; although Johnny Beauchamp was initially declared the winner, the victory was later awarded to Lee Petty.

In 1967@text5:, more than 25,000 U.S. and South Vietnamese troops launched Operation Junction City, aimed at smashing a Vietcong stronghold near the Cambodian border. (Although the communists were driven out, they later returned.)

In 1973@text5:, the United States and China agreed to establish liaison offices.

In 1980@text5:, the “Miracle on Ice” took place in Lake Placid, N.Y., as the United States Olympic hockey team upset the Soviets, 4-3. (The U.S. team went on to win the gold medal.)

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