Today’s Highlight in History:
On Feb. 6, 1952, Britain’s King George VI, 56, died at Sandringham House in Norfolk, England; he was succeeded as monarch by his 25-year-old elder daughter, who became Queen Elizabeth II.
On this date:
In 1778, during the American Revolutionary War, the United States won official recognition and military support from France with the signing of a Treaty of Alliance in Paris.
In 1788, Massachusetts became the sixth state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.
In 1815, the state of New Jersey issued the first American railroad charter to John Stevens, who proposed a rail link between Trenton and New Brunswick. (The line, however, was never built.)
In 1862, during the Civil War, Fort Henry in Tennessee fell to Union forces.
In 1899, a peace treaty between the United States and Spain was ratified by the U.S. Senate.
In 1911, Ronald Wilson Reagan, the 40th president of the United States, was born in Tampico, Illinois.
In 1922, Cardinal Archille Ratti was elected pope; he took the name Pius XI.
In 1933, the 20th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the so-called “lame duck” amendment, was proclaimed in effect by Secretary of State Henry Stimson.
In 1935, “Monopoly” board game goes on sale for 1st time.
In 1993, tennis Hall of Famer and human rights advocate Arthur Ashe died in New York at age 49.
In 1998, President Bill Clinton signed a bill changing the name of Washington National Airport to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Carl Wilson, a founding member of The Beach Boys, died in Los Angeles at age 51.
In 2000, first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton launched her successful candidacy for the U.S. Senate.
In 2008, the Bush White House defended the use of the interrogation technique known as waterboarding, saying it was legal — not torture as critics argued — and had saved American lives.
Ten years ago: The U.S. closed its embassy in Syria and Britain recalled its ambassador to Damascus in a new Western push to get President Bashar Assad to leave power and halt the murderous grind in Syria.
Five years ago: President Donald Trump accused the media of deliberately minimizing coverage of the threat posed by the Islamic State group; the president did not immediately offer evidence to support his claim, made during the new commander in chief’s first visit to the headquarters of U.S. Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida. Irwin Corey, the wild-haired comedian and actor known for his improvisational riffs and nonsensical style, died in New York at age 102.
One year ago: The Wyoming Republican Party voted overwhelmingly to censure U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney for voting to impeach President Donald Trump over his role in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office issued revised guidelines for indoor church services after the Supreme Court lifted the state’s ban on indoor worship during the coronavirus pandemic but left in place restrictions on singing and chanting. George P. Shultz, who was President Ronald Reagan’s secretary of state as part of a long career in public service, died at his California home; he was 100. Peyton Manning, a quarterback who helped redefine offense in the 21st century, was among the former players elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor Mamie Van Doren is 91. Actor Mike Farrell is 83. Former NBC News anchorman Tom Brokaw is 82. Singer Fabian is 79. Actor Gayle Hunnicutt is 79. Actor Michael Tucker is 77. Producer-director-writer Jim Sheridan is 73. Actor Jon Walmsley is 66. Actor Kathy Najimy is 65. Rock musician Simon Phillips (Toto) is 65. Actor-director Robert Townsend is 65. Actor Barry Miller is 64. Actor Megan Gallagher is 62.
Rock singer Axl Rose (Guns N’ Roses) is 60. Country singer Richie McDonald is 60. Singer Rick Astley is 56. Rock musician Tim Brown (Boo Radleys) is 53. ABC News anchor Amy Robach is 49. Actor Josh Stewart is 45. Actor Ben Lawson is 42. Actor Brandon Hammond is 38. Actor Crystal Reed (TV: “Teen Wolf”) is 37. Actor Alice Greczyn (GREH’-chihn) is 36. Actor Anna Diop is 34. R&B singer/actor Tinashe is 29.