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Today in History — Feb. 25

February 25, 2014

By the Associated Press


Today is Tuesday, Feb. 25, the 56th day of 2014. There are 309 days left in the year.


Today’s Highlight in History:


On Feb. 25, 1964, Muhammad Ali (then known as Cassius Clay) became the world heavyweight boxing champion as he defeated Sonny Liston in Miami Beach. (The victory was scored as a technical knockout when an injured Liston failed to answer the bell for the seventh round.)


On this date:


In 1836, inventor Samuel Colt patented his revolver.


In 1901, United States Steel Corp. was incorporated by J.P. Morgan.


In 1913, the 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, giving Congress the power to levy and collect income taxes, was declared in effect by Secretary of State Philander Chase Knox.


In 1914, Sir John Tenniel, the illustrator of Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking-Glass,” died in London three days before his 94th birthday.


In 1922, French serial killer Henri Landru, convicted of murdering 10 women and the son of one of them, was executed in Versailles (vehr-SY’).


In 1943, Allied troops reoccupied the Kasserine Pass after clashing with German troops during World War II.


In 1954, Gamal Abdel Nasser became Egypt’s prime minister after the country’s president, Mohammed Naguib, was effectively ousted in a coup.


In 1964, Eastern Airlines Flight 304, a DC-8, crashed shortly after taking off from New Orleans International Airport, killing all 58 people on board.


In 1973, the Stephen Sondheim musical “A Little Night Music” opened at Broadway’s Shubert Theater.


In 1986, President Ferdinand Marcos fled the Philippines after 20 years of rule in the wake of a tainted election; Corazon Aquino assumed the presidency.


In 1991, during the Persian Gulf War, 28 Americans were killed when an Iraqi Scud missile hit a U.S. barracks in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia.


In 1994, American-born Jewish settler Baruch Goldstein opened fire with an automatic rifle inside the Tomb of the Patriarchs in the West Bank, killing 29 Muslims before he was beaten to death by worshippers. At the Winter Olympics in Norway, Oksana Baiul of Ukraine won the gold medal in ladies’ figure skating while Nancy Kerrigan won the silver and Chen Lu of China the bronze; Tonya Harding came in eighth.


Ten years ago: The U.S. Supreme Court, in Locke v. Davey, ruled states didn’t have to underwrite the religious training of students planning careers in the ministry. The Mel Gibson film “The Passion of the Christ” opened in the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand on Ash Wednesday.


Five years ago: President Barack Obama introduced former Washington Gov. Gary Locke as his nominee for commerce secretary after two earlier choices dropped out. A Turkish Airlines Boeing 737 crashed while trying to land at Amsterdam’s main airport, but 126 of the people on board survived; nine were killed, including the pilots.


One year ago: A high-stakes civil trial started in New Orleans to assign blame and help figure out exactly how much more BP and other companies should pay for the 2010 Gulf oil spill. (Testimony for the first phase of the trial concluded in April 2013; the trial’s second phase began and ended in Oct. 2013, with a third phase yet to take place.) Former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, 96, died in Hanover, N.H.


Today’s Birthdays: Country singer Ralph Stanley is 87. Actor Tom Courtenay is 77. CBS newsman Bob Schieffer is 77. Actress Diane Baker is 76. Actress Karen Grassle is 72. Humorist Jack Handey is 65. Movie director Neil Jordan is 64. Rock musician Dennis Diken (The Smithereens) is 57. Rock singer-musician Mike Peters (The Alarm; Big Country) is 55. Actress Veronica Webb is 49. Actor Alexis Denisof is 48. Actress Tea (TAY’-ah) Leoni is 48. Comedian Carrot Top is 47. Actress Lesley Boone is 46. Actor Sean Astin is 43. Singer Daniel Powter is 43. Latin singer Julio Iglesias Jr. is 41. Rhythm-and-blues singer Justin Jeffre is 41. Rock musician Richard Liles is 41. Actor Anson Mount is 41. Comedian-actress Chelsea Handler is 39. Actress Rashida Jones is 38. Country singer Shawna Thompson (Thompson Square) is 36. Actor Justin Berfield is 28. Actors Oliver and James Phelps (“Harry Potter” movies) are 28. Rock musician Erik Haager (Carolina Liar) is 27.