updated 2/25/2006 1:05:18 AM ET 2006-02-25T06:05:18

Today is Saturday, Feb. 25, the 56th day of 2006. There are 309 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On Feb. 25, 1793, the department heads of the U.S. government met with President Washington at his home for the first Cabinet meeting on record.

On this date:
In 1570, Pope Pius V excommunicated England’s Queen Elizabeth I.

In 1836, inventor Samuel Colt patented his revolver.

In 1901, United States Steel Corporation was incorporated by J.P. Morgan.

In 1913, the 16th Amendment to the United States Constitution, giving Congress the power to levy and collect income taxes, was declared in effect.

In 1948, Communists seized power in Czechoslovakia.

In 1956, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev harshly criticized the late Josef Stalin in a speech before a Communist Party congress in Moscow.

In 1964, Cassius Clay (later Muhammad Ali) became world heavyweight boxing champion by defeating Sonny Liston in Miami Beach, Fla.

In 1973, the Stephen Sondheim musical “A Little Night Music” opened at Broadway’s Shubert Theater.

In 1986, President Ferdinand E. Marcos fled the Philippines after 20 years of rule in the wake of a tainted election; Corazon Aquino assumed the presidency.

In 1991, during the Persian Gulf War, 28 Americans were killed when an Iraqi Scud missile hit a U.S. barracks in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia.

Ten years ago: Blasts set off by suicide bombers in Jerusalem and Ashkelon killed 27 people. A 12-mile tether connecting a half-ton satellite to the space shuttle Columbia broke loose as it was almost completely unreeled. Cambodian activist Dr. Haing S. Ngor, who won an Academy Award for his performance in the 1984 movie “The Killing Fields,” was shot to death outside his Los Angeles apartment.

Five years ago: The commander of the U.S. submarine that struck and sunk a Japanese trawler off Hawaii expressed his “most sincere regret” — but Cmdr. Scott Waddle stopped short of an apology.

One year ago: Municipal employee and church leader Dennis Rader was arrested for the BTK serial killings that terrorized Wichita, Kan. (He later pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 10 life prison terms.) Amnesty International founder Peter Benenson died in Oxford, England, at age 83. Hall of Fame basketball coach John Chaney was suspended for the rest of the regular season by Temple for ordering rough play by one of his players during a game against Saint Joseph’s. The Walt Disney Co. agreed to sell the Anaheim Mighty Ducks to billionaire Henry Samueli and his wife, Susan, for $75 million.

Today’s Birthdays: Country singer Ralph Stanley is 79. TV writer-producer Larry Gelbart is 78. Musician Tommy Newsom is 77. Actor Tom Courtenay is 69. CBS anchorman Bob Schieffer is 69. Actress Diane Baker is 68. Talk show host Sally Jessy Raphael is 63. Actress Karen Grassle is 62. Movie director Neil Jordan is 56. Rock singer-musician Mike Peters (The Alarm) is 47. Actress Veronica Webb is 41. Actor Alexis Denisof is 40. Actress Tea Leoni is 40. Actress Lesley Boone is 38. Actor Sean Astin is 35. Latin singer Julio Iglesias Jr. is 33. Rhythm-and-blues singer Justin Jeffre (98 Degrees) is 33. Rock musician Richard Liles is 33. Actor Anson Mount is 33. Actress Rashida Jones is 30. Actor Justin Berfield (“Malcolm in the Middle”) is 20. Actors Oliver and James Phelps (“Harry Potter” movies) are 20.

Thought for Today: “Open-mindedness is not the same as empty-mindedness. To hang out a sign saying, ’Come right in; there is no one at home’ is not the equivalent of hospitality.” — John Dewey, American philosopher and educator (1859-1952).

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