Today in History

  • Wednesday, February 1, 2012 10:05pm
  • Life

Today is Thursday, Feb. 2, the 33rd day of 2012. There are 333 days left in the year. This is Groundhog Day.

Today’s highlight:

On Feb. 2, 1912, Frederick Law parachuted from the torch of the Statue of Liberty in a stunt filmed by Pathe News.

On this date:

In 1536, present-day Buenos Aires, Argentina, was founded by Pedro de Mendoza of Spain.

In 1653, New Amsterdam — now New York City — was incorporated.

In 1848, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, ending the Mexican-American War, was signed.

In 1882, Irish poet and novelist James Joyce was born near Dublin.

In 1887, Punxsutawney, Pa., held its first Groundhog Day festival.

In 1912, Broadway composer Burton Lane (“Finian’s Rainbow”) was born in New York City.

In 1922, the James Joyce novel “Ulysses” was published in Paris by Sylvia Beach’s Shakespeare and Co. on Joyce’s 40th birthday.

In 1942, a Los Angeles Times column by W.H. Anderson urged security measures against Japanese-Americans, arguing that a Japanese-American “almost inevitably … grows up to be a Japanese, not an American.”

In 1943, the remainder of Nazi forces from the Battle of Stalingrad surrendered in a major victory for the Soviets in World War II.

In 1961, hijackers of a Portuguese ocean liner, the Santa Maria, allowed the passengers and crew to disembark in Brazil, 11 days after seizing the ship. Chinese-American actress Anna May Wong died in Santa Monica, Calif., at age 56.

In 1971, Idi Amin, having seized power in Uganda, proclaimed himself president.

In 1992, longtime “Miss America” emcee Bert Parks died in La Jolla, Calif., at age 77.

The Associated Press

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