updated 3/4/2006 12:08:46 AM ET 2006-03-04T05:08:46

Today is Saturday, March 4, the 63rd day of 2006. There are 302 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On March 4, 1789, the Constitution of the United States went into effect as the first Federal Congress met in New York. (The lawmakers then adjourned for lack of a quorum.)

On this date:
In 1681, England’s King Charles II granted a charter to William Penn for an area of land that later became Pennsylvania.

In 1791, Vermont became the 14th state.

In 1837, the Illinois state legislature granted a city charter to Chicago.

In 1861, Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated president.

In 1902, the American Automobile Association was founded in Chicago.

In 1906, John McAllister Schofield, a Union general in the Civil War and onetime commanding general of the army, died in St. Augustine, Fla., at age 74.

In 1925, President Calvin Coolidge’s inauguration was broadcast live on 21 radio stations coast-to-coast.

In 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt was inaugurated president, pledging to lead the country out of the Great Depression.

In 1952, actors Ronald Reagan and Nancy Davis were married in San Fernando Valley, Calif.

In 1981, a jury in Salt Lake City convicted Joseph Paul Franklin, an avowed racist, of violating the civil rights of two black men who had been shot to death.

Ten years ago: Jury selection began in Little Rock, Ark., in the trial of President Clinton’s Whitewater partners, James and Susan McDougal, and the man who succeeded him as Arkansas governor, Jim Guy Tucker (James McDougal and Tucker were later convicted of fraud and conspiracy; Susan McDougal was convicted of fraud). A suicide bomber blew himself up outside a Tel Aviv shopping center, killing 13 people in the fourth deadly attack in nine days. Comedian Minnie Pearl died in Nashville, Tenn., at age 83.

Five years ago: President Bush dedicated a $4 billion aircraft carrier in honor of former President Reagan. An oceanside memorial was held in Hawaii for 35 people missing from a Japanese fishing boat that had been accidentally sunk by a U.S. submarine. Perennial presidential candidate Harold E. Stassen died in Bloomington, Minn., at age 93. Singer Glenn Hughes, the biker character in the disco band the Village People, died in New York at age 50.

One year ago: American troops in Iraq fired on a car carrying just-freed Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena, killing the intelligence officer who’d helped negotiate her release and injuring the reporter. Martha Stewart, imprisoned for five months for her role in a stock scandal, left federal prison to start five months of home confinement. President Bush nominated career scientist Stephen L. Johnson to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

Today’s Birthdays: Folk singer Miriam Makeba is 74. Actress-singer Barbara McNair is 72. Movie director Adrian Lyne is 65. Singer Bobby Womack is 62. Rock musician Chris Squire (Yes) is 58. Singer Shakin’ Stevens is 58. Singer Chris Rea is 55. Actor Ronn Moss is 54. Actress Kay Lenz is 53. Musician Emilio Estefan is 53. Movie director Scott Hicks is 53. Actress Catherine O’Hara is 52. Actress Patricia Heaton is 48. Actor Mykelti Williamson is 46. Actor Steven Weber is 45. Rock musician Jason Newsted is 43. Actress Stacy Edwards is 41. Rapper Grand Puba is 40. Rock musician Patrick Hannan (The Sundays) is 40. Rock singer Evan Dando (Lemonheads) is 39. Actress Patsy Kensit is 38. Chastity Bono is 37. Actor Nick Stabile is 36. Rock musician Fergal Lawler (The Cranberries) is 35. Country singer Jason Sellers is 35. Jazz musician Jason Marsalis is 29. Actress Andrea Bowen (“Desperate Housewives”) is 16. Actress Jenna Boyd is 13.

Thought for Today: “It’s not love’s going hurts my days / But that it went in little ways.” — Edna St. Vincent Millay, American author and poet (1892-1950).

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