The Associated Press
Today is Wednesday, April 3, the 93rd day of 2013. There are 272 days left in the year.
Highlight in History
On April 3, 1973, the first handheld portable telephone was demonstrated for reporters on a New York City street corner as Motorola executive Martin Cooper contacted Joel S. Engel of Bell Labs using a Motorola device that, according to an AP story, looked like “a small, domesticated version of military walkie-talkies” and weighed less than three pounds.
On this date
In 1776, George Washington received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Harvard College.
In 1860, the legendary Pony Express began carrying mail between St. Joseph, Mo., and Sacramento, Calif. (The delivery system lasted only 18 months before giving way to the transcontinental telegraph.)
In 1869, Edvard Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A Minor, Op. 16, premiered in Copenhagen.
In 1882, outlaw Jesse James was shot to death in St. Joseph, Mo., by Robert Ford, a member of James’ gang.
In 1913, British suffragist Emmeline Pankhurst was sentenced to three years in jail for inciting supporters to bomb the home of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, David Lloyd George. (Pankhurst, known for staging hunger strikes in prison, was repeatedly released and reincarcerated, serving roughly 30 days total behind bars.)
In 1936, Bruno Hauptmann was electrocuted in Trenton, N.J. for the kidnap-murder of Charles Lindbergh Jr.
In 1942, during World War II, Japanese forces began their final assault on Bataan against American and Filipino troops who surrendered six days later; the capitulation was followed by the notorious Bataan Death March.
In 1946, Lt. Gen. Masaharu Homma, the Japanese commander held responsible for the Bataan Death March, was executed by firing squad outside Manila.
In 1948, President Harry S. Truman signed the Marshall Plan, designed to help European allies rebuild after World War II and resist communism.
In 1968, the day before he was assassinated in Memphis, Tenn., civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “mountaintop” speech to a rally of striking sanitation workers.
In 1974, deadly tornadoes struck wide parts of the South and Midwest before jumping across the border into Canada; more than 300 fatalities resulted.
In 1996, an Air Force jetliner carrying Commerce Secretary Ron Brown and American business executives crashed in Croatia, killing all 35 people aboard.
Ten years ago
Moving with a sense of wartime urgency, the House and Senate separately agreed to give President George W. Bush nearly $80 billion to carry out the battle against Iraq and meet the threat of terrorism. Atlantic magazine editor Michael Kelly, 46, became the first American journalist to be killed while covering the Iraq war. Cuban security forces arrested the hijackers of a passenger ferry, rescuing nearly 50 hostages.
Five years ago
NATO allies meeting in Bucharest, Romania, gave President George W. Bush strong support for a missile defense system in Europe and urged Moscow to drop its angry opposition to the program. Model Naomi Campbell was arrested at London Heathrow Airport after getting into an altercation with police during a dispute about lost luggage. (Campbell was later sentenced to 200 hours of community service and fined 2,300 pounds.) Ohio State defeated Massachusetts, 92-85, for the National Invitation Tournament title.
One year ago
Mitt Romney tightened his grip on the Republican presidential nomination, sweeping primaries in Wisconsin, Maryland and Washington, D.C. In a speech to the annual meeting of The Associated Press, President Barack Obama accused Republican leaders of becoming so radical and rigid that even the late Ronald Reagan could not win a GOP primary if he were running today. Baylor finished off an undefeated season with an 80-61 win over Notre Dame in the NCAA women’s basketball championship game.