updated 1/5/2005 12:14:20 AM ET 2005-01-05T05:14:20

Today is Wednesday, Jan. 5, the fifth day of 2005. There are 360 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight in history:
On Jan. 5, 1925, Nellie T. Ross succeeded her late husband as governor of Wyoming, becoming the first female governor in U.S. history.

On this date:
In 1589, Catherine de Medici of France died at age 69.

In 1781, a British naval expedition led by Benedict Arnold burned Richmond, Va.

In 1895, French Captain Alfred Dreyfus, convicted of treason, was publicly stripped of his rank. (He was ultimately vindicated.)

In 1896, an Austrian newspaper (“Wiener Presse”) reported the discovery by German physicist Wilhelm Roentgen of a type of radiation that came to be known as “X-rays.”

In 1933, the 30th president of the United States, Calvin Coolidge, died in Northampton, Mass., at age 60.

In 1949, in his State of the Union address, President Truman labeled his administration the “Fair Deal.”

In 1970, Joseph A. Yablonski, an unsuccessful candidate for the presidency of the United Mine Workers of America, was found murdered with his wife and daughter at their Clarksville, Pa., home. UMWA President Anthony Boyle and three others were convicted of the killings.

In 1975, “The Wiz,” a musical version of L. Frank Baum’s “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” featuring an all-black cast, opened on Broadway.

In 1994, Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill, former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, died in Boston at age 81.

In 1998, Sonny Bono, the 1960’s pop star-turned-politician, was killed when he struck a tree while skiing in South Lake Tahoe, Calif.; he was 62.

Ten years ago: President Clinton received Republican congressional leaders at the White House, declaring that “we can do a lot of business together” on reforming the way government works.

Five years ago: Touching off angry protests by Cuban-Americans in Miami, the U.S. government decided to send 6-year-old Elian Gonzalez back to Cuba. (After a legal battle, and the seizure of Elian from the home of his U.S. relatives, the boy was returned to Cuba in June.) Democratic presidential candidates Al Gore and Bill Bradley engaged in a feisty debate in Durham, N.H.

One year ago: Foreigners arriving at U.S. airports were photographed and had their fingerprints scanned in the start of a government effort to keep terrorists out of the country. NASA released a 3-D, black-and-white panoramic picture of the bleak surface of Mars snapped by the newly landed rover, Spirit. China confirmed its first SARS case since an outbreak was contained in July 2003. After 14 years of denials, Pete Rose publicly admitted that he’d bet on baseball while manager of the Cincinnati Reds. Baseball pitcher Tug McGraw died near Nashville, Tenn., at age 59.

Today’s birthdays: Former Vice President Walter F. Mondale is 77. Actor Robert Duvall is 74. Football Hall-of-Fame coach Chuck Noll is 73. King Juan Carlos of Spain is 67. Talk show host Charlie Rose is 63. Actress-director Diane Keaton is 59. R&B musician George “Funky” Brown (Kool and the Gang) is 56. Rock musician Chris Stein (Blondie) is 55. Actor Clancy Brown is 46. Singer Iris Dement is 44. Rock musician Kate Schellenbach (Luscious Jackson) is 39. Actress Heather Paige Kent is 36. Rock singer Marilyn Manson is 36.

Thought for today: “In aging, one becomes more foolish and more wise.” — Francois, Duc de La Rochefoucauld, French author (1613-1680).

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