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Thursday, December 04, 2008

This day in history

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[December 04, 2008]  (AP)  Today is Thursday, Dec. 4, the 339th day of 2008. There are 27 days left in the year.

CivicToday's highlight in history:

On Dec. 4, 1619, a group of settlers from Bristol, England, arrived at Berkeley Hundred in present-day Charles City County, Va., where they held a service thanking God for their safe arrival. (Some suggest this was the true first Thanksgiving in America, ahead of the Pilgrims' arrival in Massachusetts.)

On this date:

In 1783, General George Washington bade farewell to his officers at Fraunces Tavern in New York.

In 1816, James Monroe of Virginia was elected the fifth president of the United States.

In 1875, William Marcy Tweed, the "Boss" of New York City's Tammany Hall political organization, escaped from jail and fled the country.

In 1918, President Woodrow Wilson left Washington on a trip to France to attend the Versailles Peace Conference.

In 1942, U.S. bombers struck the Italian mainland for the first time in World War II.

In 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the dismantling of the Works Progress Administration, which had been created to provide jobs during the Depression.


In 1965, the United States launched Gemini 7 with Air Force Lt. Col. Frank Borman and Navy Cmdr. James A. Lovell aboard.

In 1978, San Francisco got its first female mayor as City Supervisor Dianne Feinstein was named to replace the assassinated George Moscone.

In 1991, the original Pan American World Airways ceased operations.

In 1996, the Mars Pathfinder lifted off from Cape Canaveral, Fla., and began speeding toward Mars on a 310 million-mile odyssey. (It arrived on Mars in July 1997.)

Ten years ago: Space shuttle Endeavour and a crew of six blasted off on the first mission to begin assembling the international space station.

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Five years ago: President George W. Bush scrapped import tariffs he'd imposed earlier to help the battered U.S. steel industry. Baltimore-based federal prosecutor Jonathan P. Luna was found dead behind the parking lot of a well-drilling company in Lancaster County, Pa. (The case remains unsolved.)

One year ago: Defending his credibility, President George W. Bush said Iran was dangerous and needed to be squeezed by international pressure despite a blockbuster intelligence finding that Tehran had halted its nuclear weapons program four years earlier. The intelligence report on Iran figured in a Democratic debate on National Public Radio as rivals assailed front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton for voting in favor of a Senate resolution designating Iran's Revolutionary Guard a terrorist organization. Pimp C, a rapper with the Texas hip-hop group Underground Kingz, was found dead in a hotel room in Los Angeles; he was 33.

Today's birthdays: Actress-singer Deanna Durbin is 87. Game show host Wink Martindale is 74. Actor-producer Max Baer Jr. is 71. Actress Gemma Jones is 66. Rock musician Bob Mosley (Moby Grape) is 66. Singer-musician Chris Hillman is 64. Musician Terry Woods (The Pogues) is 61. Rock singer Southside Johnny Lyon is 60. Actor Jeff Bridges is 59. Rock musician Gary Rossington (Lynyrd Skynyrd; the Rossington Collins Band) is 57. Actress Patricia Wettig is 57. Actor Tony Todd is 54. Jazz singer Cassandra Wilson is 53. Country musician Brian Prout (Diamond Rio) is 53. Rock musician Bob Griffin (The BoDeans) is 49. Rock singer Vinnie Dombroski (Sponge) is 46. Actress Marisa Tomei is 44. Actress Chelsea Noble is 44. Actor-comedian Fred Armisen is 42. Rapper Jay-Z is 39. Actor Kevin Sussman is 38. Actress-model Tyra Banks is 35. Country singer Lila McCann is 27. Actress Lindsay Felton is 24. Actor Orlando Brown is 21.

Thought for today: "There is always room at the top -- after the investigation." -- Oliver Herford, American author (1863-1935)


[Associated Press]

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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