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April 29, 2013

Today in History

Today is Monday, April 29, the 119th day of 2013. There are 246 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight in history:

On April 29, 1913, Swedish-born engineer Gideon Sundback of Hoboken, N.J., received a U.S. patent for a “separable fastener” — later known as the zipper.

On this date:

In 1429, Joan of Arc entered the besieged city of Orleans to lead a French victory over the English.

In 1861, the Maryland House of Delegates voted 53-13 against seceding from the Union. In Montgomery, Ala., President Jefferson Davis asked the Confederate Congress for the authority to wage war.

In 1863, newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst was born in San Francisco.

In 1916, the Easter Rising in Dublin collapsed as Irish nationalists surrendered to British authorities.

In 1945, during World War II, American soldiers liberated the Dachau concentration camp. Adolf Hitler married Eva Braun and designated Adm. Karl Doenitz president.

In 1946, 28 former Japanese officials went on trial in Tokyo as war criminals; seven ended up being sentenced to death.

In 1968, the counterculture musical “Hair” opened on Broadway following limited engagements off-Broadway.

In 1974, President Richard M. Nixon announced he was releasing edited transcripts of some secretly made White House tape recordings related to Watergate.

In 1983, Harold Washington was sworn in as the first black mayor of Chicago.

In 1992, rioting resulting in 55 deaths erupted in Los Angeles after a jury in Simi Valley, Calif., acquitted four Los Angeles police officers of almost all state charges in the videotaped beating of Rodney King.

In 1993, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II announced that for the first time, Buckingham Palace would be opened to tourists to help raise money for repairs at fire-damaged Windsor Castle.

In 2011, Britain’s Prince William and Kate Middleton were married in an opulent ceremony at London’s Westminster Abbey.

Ten years ago: The Palestinian parliament approved Mahmoud Abbas as prime minister, clearing the final obstacle to the launch of a U.S.-backed “road map” to peace. Pakistani authorities captured Waleed bin Attash, accused of playing a leading role in the Sept. 11 attacks.

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