Originally created 02/22/99

This day in the millennium -- February 22



Today's Highlight in History:

On Feb. 22, 1732, the first U.S. president, George Washington, was born at his parents' plantation in the Virginia Colony.

On this date:

In 1784, a U.S. merchant ship, the "Empress of China," left New York City for the Far East.

In 1819, Spain ceded Florida to the United States.

In 1865, Tennessee adopted a new constitution abolishing slavery.

In 1879, Frank Winfield Woolworth opened a five-cent store in Utica, N.Y.

In 1889, President Cleveland signed a bill to admit the Dakotas, Montana and Washington state to the Union.

In 1892, "Lady Windermere's Fan" by Oscar Wilde was first performed, at London's St. James's Theater.

In 1924, Calvin Coolidge delivered the first presidential radio broadcast from the White House.

In 1973, the United States and Communist China agreed to establish liaison offices.

In 1980, in a stunning upset, the U.S. Olympic hockey team defeated the Soviets at Lake Placid, N.Y., 4-3.

In 1987, pop artist Andy Warhol died at a New York City hospital at age 58.

Ten years ago: Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini, who had sentenced author Salman Rushdie to death, said economic sanctions would not change his stance, and that publication of Rushdie's "The Satanic Verses" was a sign from God that Iran should not reach out to the West.

Five years ago: The Justice Department charged 31-year CIA veteran Aldrich Ames and his wife, Rosario, with selling national security secrets to the Soviet Union. (Ames was later sentenced to life in prison; his wife received a 5-year term.)

One year ago: Abraham A. Ribicoff, the former Connecticut governor and senator who served as President Kennedy's secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, died in Riverdale, N.Y., at age 87. The Czech Republic defeated Russia 1-0 to win men's hockey as the Nagano Winter Olympics came to a close.

Today's Birthdays: Actor Sir John Mills is 91. Announcer Don Pardo is 81. Actor Paul Dooley is 71. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., is 67. Singer Ernie K-Doe is 63. Movie director Jonathan Demme is 55. Actress Ellen Greene is 49. Actress Miou-Miou is 49. Actress Julie Walters is 49. Basketball Hall-of-Famer Julius Erving is 49. Actor Kyle MacLachlan is 40. Actress-singer Lea Salonga is 28. Actor Jose Solano ("Baywatch") is 28. Tennis player Michael Chang is 27. Actress Drew Barrymore is 24.

Thought for Today: ``Authority without wisdom is like a heavy ax without an edge, fitter to bruise than polish." -- Anne Bradstreet, American poet (1612-1672).