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Almanac

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Monday, April 12, the 102nd day of 2021. There are 263 days left in the year.

Todayís Highlight in History:

On April 12, 1945, President Franklin D. Roosevelt died of a cerebral hemorrhage in Warm Springs, Georgia, at age 63; he was succeeded by Vice President Harry S. Truman.

On this date:

In 1861, the Civil War began as Confederate forces opened fire on Fort Sumter in South Carolina.

In 1877, the catcherís mask was first used in a baseball game by James Tyng of Harvard in a game against the Lynn Live Oaks.

In 1955, the Salk vaccine against polio was declared safe and effective.

In 1961, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first man to fly in space, orbiting the earth once before making a safe landing.

In 1963, civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. was arrested and jailed in Birmingham, Alabama, charged with contempt of court and parading without a permit. (During his time behind bars, King wrote his ìLetter from Birmingham Jail.î)

In 1975, singer, dancer and civil rights activist Josephine Baker, 68, died in Paris.

In 1981, the space shuttle Columbia blasted off from Cape Canaveral on its first test flight. Former world heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis, 66, died in Las Vegas, Nevada.

In 1988, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued a patent to Harvard University for a genetically engineered mouse, the first time a patent was granted for an animal life form.

In 1989, former boxing champion Sugar Ray Robinson died in Culver City, Calif., at age 67; radical activist Abbie Hoffman was found dead at his home in New Hope, Pa., at age 52.

In 1990, in its first meeting, East Germanyís first democratically elected parliament acknowledged responsibility for the Nazi Holocaust, and asked the forgiveness of Jews and others who had suffered.

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