Today in History - Jan. 4

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Today is Friday, Jan. 4, the fourth day of 2013. There are 361 days left in the year.


On Jan. 4, 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson delivered his State of the Union address in which he outlined the goals of his “Great Society,” a series of domestic policy initiatives aimed at growing the economy and improving the quality of life for all.


In 1821, the first native-born American saint, Elizabeth Ann Seton, died in Emmitsburg, Md.


In 1896, Utah was admitted as the 45th state.


In 1904, the Supreme Court, in Gonzalez v. Williams, ruled that Puerto Ricans were not aliens and could enter the United States freely; however, the court stopped short of declaring them U.S. citizens.


In 1935, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in his State of the Union address, called for legislation to provide assistance for the jobless, elderly, impoverished children and the handicapped.


In 1943, Soviet dictator Josef Stalin appeared on the cover of Time as the magazine’s 1942 “Man of the Year.”


In 1951, during the Korean War, North Korean and Communist Chinese forces recaptured the city of Seoul.


In 1960, author and philosopher Albert Camus died in an automobile accident in Villeblevin, France, at age 46.


In 1964, Pope Paul VI began a visit to the Holy Land, the first papal pilgrimage of its kind, as he arrived in Jerusalem.


In 1974, President Richard M. Nixon refused to hand over tape recordings and documents subpoenaed by the Senate Watergate Committee.


In 1987, 16 people were killed when an Amtrak train bound from Washington, D.C., to Boston collided with Conrail locomotives that had crossed into its path from a side track in Chase, Md.


In 1990, Charles Stuart, who’d claimed he’d been wounded and that his pregnant wife was fatally shot by a robber, leapt to his death off a Boston bridge after he himself became a suspect.


In 2007, Nancy Pelosi was elected the first female speaker of the House as Democrats took control of Congress.


Ten years ago: As President George W. Bush put the finishing touches on an economic growth package costing $674 billion over ten years, Democratic presidential hopefuls pledged to scuttle what they characterized as a plan that would help the wealthy without reviving the economy. Oscar-winning cinematographer Conrad L. Hall died in Santa Monica, Calif., at age 76.


Five years ago: The government reported that the nation’s jobless rate hit 5 percent in Dec. 2007, a two-year high, fanning recession fears. Howling winds, pelting rain and heavy snow pummeled California. Britney Spears lost custody of her two sons to ex-husband Kevin Federline a day after police and paramedics were called to her home.


One year ago: Defying Republican lawmakers, President Barack Obama barreled past the Senate and used a recess appointment to name Richard Cordray the first director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.


Today’s Birthdays: Actress Barbara Rush is 86. Football Hall-of-Fame coach Don Shula is 83. Actress Dyan Cannon is 76. Opera singer Grace Bumbry is 76. Author-historian Doris Kearns Goodwin is 70. Country singer Kathy Forester (The Forester Sisters) is 58. Actress Ann Magnuson is 57. Rock musician Bernard Sumner (New Order, Joy Division) is 57. Country singer Patty Loveless is 56. Rock singer Michael Stipe is 53. Actor Patrick Cassidy is 51. Actor Dave Foley is 50. Actress Dot Jones (TV: “Glee”) is 49. Actor Rick Hearst is 48. Singer-musician Cait O’Riordan is 48. Actress Julia Ormond is 48. Tennis player Guy Forget (ghee fohr-ZHAY’) is 48. Country singer Deana Carter is 47. Rock musician Benjamin Darvill (Crash Test Dummies) is 46. Actor Jeremy Licht is 42. Actress-singer Jill Marie Jones is 38. Alt-country singer Justin Townes Earle is 31. Christian rock singer Spencer Chamberlain (Underoath) is 30. Comedian-actress Charlyne Yi is 27.


Thought for Today: “Sometimes history takes things into its own hands.” — Thurgood Marshall, U.S. Supreme Court justice (1908-1993).


(Above Advance for Use Friday, Jan. 4)


Copyright 2013, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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