Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Today in History - Jan. 20

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Today in History - Jan. 20

Article excerpt

Today in History - Jan. 20

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Today in History for Jan. 20:

On this date:

In 1265, England's Parliament, representing English districts, cities and boroughs, met for the first time.

In 1783, Britain and the United States signed an armistice, and fighting in the Revolutionary War ceased on Feb. 4.

In 1841, the island of Hong Kong was ceded by China to Great Britain. It returned to Chinese control in July, 1997.

In 1850, Capt. Robert McClure sailed from Britain to search for survivors of the Franklin Expedition in the Canadian Arctic. He eventually discovered the Northwest Passage.

In 1887, the U.S. Senate approved an agreement to lease Pearl Harbor in Hawaii as a naval base.

In 1892, the first game of basketball was played in Springfield, Mass. It was invented by Canadian-born teacher James Naismith.

In 1904, the federal government disallowed a British Columbia act that restricted immigration.

In 1918, following the Bolshevik Revolution, all church property in Russia was confiscated and all religious instruction in schools abolished.

In 1929, the first full-length talking picture shot outdoors, "In Old Arizona," was released by Fox.

In 1936, King George V died and was succeeded by his eldest son, Edward VIII.

In 1937, U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt became the first chief executive to be inaugurated on Jan. 20th instead of March 4.

In 1942, Nazi officials held the notorious Wannsee Conference in the Berlin suburb of that name. The meeting discussed details of their planned extermination of European Jews.

In 1945, U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt was sworn into office for an unprecedented fourth term.

In 1981, the American hostage crisis in Iran came to an end. The release came moments after the U.S. presidency passed from Jimmy Carter to Ronald Reagan. The 52 Americans had been held for 444 days. Radical Iranian students had seized the U.S. embassy on Nov. 4, 1979, demanding the U.S. extradite the deposed shah to stand trial in Iran.

In 1986, most American states observed the first holiday in honour of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

In 1986, Britain and France announced plans to build a tunnel under the English Channel. (The "Chunnel" was opened on May 6, 1994. Regular passenger service began six months later.)

In 1987, Anglican Church envoy Terry Waite disappeared in Beirut while attempting to negotiate the release of western hostages. He was freed in November, 1991.

In 1989, Imperial Oil agreed to buy Texaco Canada for nearly $5 billion.

In 1994, newspapers, radio and television broadcasters had to scramble to jerry-rig systems to get their material out. The problems arose when Anik E-1, one of Canada's main communications satellites, spun out of control.

In 1995, the NHL season finally began after a lockout by the owners. …

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