On Jan. 17, 1963, Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, appearing as amicus curiae (friend of the court) before the U.S. Supreme Court, told the justices in Gray v. Sanders that Georgia's county unit voting system in Democratic primaries discriminated against urban voters. (The court later struck down the county unit system, citing the concept of "one person, one vote.")
On this date:
In 1893, the 19th president of the United States, Rutherford B. Hayes, died in Fremont, Ohio, at age 70. Hawaii's monarchy was overthrown as a group of businessmen and sugar planters forced Queen Lili'uokalani to abdicate.
In 1917, the United States paid Denmark $25 million for the Virgin Islands.
In 1929, the cartoon character Popeye the Sailor made his debut in the "Thimble Theatre" comic strip.
In 1945, Soviet and Polish forces liberated Warsaw during World War II; Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, credited with saving tens of thousands of Jews, disappeared in Hungary while in Soviet custody.
In 1961, President Dwight Eisenhower delivered his farewell address in which he warned against "the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex."
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