Today

History, Happenings, Birthdays

Published Jan 20, 2013 at 04:00AM

It's Sunday, Jan. 20, the 20th day of 2013. There are 345 days left in the year.

History

Highlight: On Jan. 20, 1953, Dwight D. Eisenhower took the oath of office as president of the United States.

In 1265, England's first representative Parliament, which included officials from districts, cities and boroughs, met for the first time.

In 1649, King Charles I of England went on trial, accused of high treason (he was found guilty and executed by month's end).

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

In 1936, Britain's King George V died; he was succeeded by Edward VIII.

In 1942, Nazi officials held the notorious Wannsee conference, during which they arrived at their “final solution” that called for exterminating Jews.

In 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower and Vice President Richard Nixon were sworn in for their second terms of office in a private Sunday ceremony (a public ceremony was held the next day).

In 1961, John F. Kennedy was inaugurated as the 35th president of the United States.

In 1981, Iran released 52 Americans it had held hostage for 444 days, minutes after the presidency had passed from Jimmy Carter to Ronald Reagan.

In 1986, the United States observed the first federal holiday in honor of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

In 1993, Bill Clinton was sworn in as the 42nd president. Actress Audrey Hepburn died in Switzerland at age 63.

In 2001, George W. Bush became America's 43rd president after one of the most turbulent elections in U.S. history.

In 2009, Barack Obama was sworn in as the nation's 44th, as well as first African-American, president.

Ten years ago: Secretary of State Colin Powell, faced with stiff resistance and calls for caution, bluntly told the Security Council that the U.N. “must not shrink” from its responsibility to disarm Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Caricaturist Al Hirschfeld died in New York at 99. Pollster Burns W. “Bud” Roper died on Cape Cod, Mass., at 77.

Five years ago: The New England Patriots defeated the San Diego Chargers in the AFC championship game, pulling out a 21-12 victory that sent them back to the Super Bowl for the fourth time in seven seasons. The New York Giants won a 23-20 overtime victory over Green Bay in the NFC championship.

One year ago: Six U.S. Marines were killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan's southern province of Helmand. Singer Etta James, 73, died in California.

Happenings

Inauguration — President Barack Obama takes the oath for his second term in private, on the day the Constitution requires. (The public inaugural ceremony is Monday.) A6

Gun debate — It's the weekend in which firearms take center stage: Churches and congregations across the country are organizing “Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath” events today to focus attention on urban gun violence, a day after advocates for gun rights took to state capitals. A2

Birthdays

Country singer Slim Whitman is 89. Comedian Arte Johnson is 84. Former astronaut Buzz Aldrin is 83. Movie director David Lynch is 67. Country-rock musician George Grantham (Poco) is 66. Rock musician Paul Stanley (KISS) is 61. Comedian Bill Maher is 57. Actor Lorenzo Lamas is 55. Sophie, Countess of Wessex, is 48. Actor Rainn Wilson is 47. Singer Edwin McCain is 43. Actor Skeet Ulrich is 43. Rap musician ?uestlove (questlove) (The Roots) is 42. Country singer Brantley Gilbert is 28.

— From wire reports