Today is Friday, Feb. 1, the 32nd day of 2013. There are 333 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Feb. 1, 2003, the space shuttle Columbia broke up during re-entry, killing all seven of its crew members.
On this date:
- In 1790, the U.S. Supreme Court convened for the first time in New York. (However, since only three of the six justices were present, the court recessed until the next day.)
- In 1861, Texas voted to leave the Union at a Secession Convention in Austin.
- In 1862, "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," a poem by Julia Ward Howe, was published in the Atlantic Monthly.
- In 1922, in one of Hollywood's most enduring mysteries, movie director William Desmond Taylor was shot to death in his Los Angeles home; the killing has never been solved.
- In 1942, the Voice of America broadcast its first program to Europe, relaying it through the facilities of the British Broadcasting Corp. in London.
- In 1943, one of America's most highly decorated military units, the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, made up almost exclusively of Japanese-Americans, was authorized.
- In 1946, Norwegian statesman Trygve Lie was chosen to be the first secretary-general of the United Nations.
- In 1960, four black college students began a sit-in protest at a Woolworth's lunch counter in Greensboro, N.C., where they'd been refused service.
- In 1968, during the Vietnam War, South Vietnam's police chief (Nguyen Ngoc Loan) executed a Viet Cong officer with a pistol shot to the head. Richard M. Nixon announced his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
- In 1979, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini received a tumultuous welcome in Tehran as he ended nearly 15 years of exile.
- In 1991, 34 people were killed when an arriving USAir jetliner crashed atop a commuter plane on a runway at Los Angeles International Airport.
- In 1993, Gary Bettman took office as the NHL's first commissioner.