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Today in History - Feb. 25

Celebrity birthdays, highlights in history, plus more facts about this day
/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Sunday, Feb. 25, the 56th day of 2007. There are 309 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Feb. 25, 1913, the 16th Amendment to the United States Constitution, giving Congress the power to levy and collect income taxes, was declared in effect by Secretary of State Philander Chase Knox.

On this date:

In 1308, Edward II was crowned King of England.

In 1707, Italian playwright Carlo Goldoni was born in Venice.

In 1779, American forces led by George Rogers Clark routed the British from Fort Sackville in the Revolutionary War Battle of Vincennes in Indiana.

In 1836, inventor Samuel Colt patented his revolver.

In 1901, U.S. Steel Corp. was incorporated by J.P. Morgan.

In 1948, Communists seized power in Czechoslovakia.

In 1957, the Supreme Court, in Butler v. Michigan, overturned a Michigan statute making it a misdemeanor to sell books containing obscene language that would tend to corrupt “the morals of youth.”

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

In 1986, President Ferdinand 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: China’s elite bid a final farewell to Deng Xiaoping, the country’s last great revolutionary leader. A jury in Media, Pa., convicted multimillionaire John E. du Pont of third-degree murder, deciding he was mentally ill when he killed world-class wrestler David Schultz. (Du Pont is serving a 13- to 30-year sentence.)

Five years ago: Former NBA star Jayson Williams was charged with manslaughter in the shooting death of Costas “Gus” Christofi, a limousine driver at Williams’ estate in Alexandria Township, N.J. (A jury convicted Williams in 2004 of trying to cover up the slaying; it acquitted Williams of aggravated manslaughter but deadlocked on a lesser charge of reckless manslaughter.)

One year ago: In Uganda, President Yoweri Museveni was declared the winner in the central African country’s first multiparty election in 25 years. Apolo Anton Ohno upset favored South Korean Ahn Hyun-soo to win the gold in the 500-meter short track speedskating event at the Winter Games in Turin, Italy. Actor Darren McGavin died in Los Angeles at age 83.

Today’s Birthdays: Country singer Ralph Stanley is 80. TV writer-producer Larry Gelbart is 79. Musician Tommy Newsom is 78. Actor Tom Courtenay is 70. CBS newsman Bob Schieffer is 70. Actress Diane Baker is 69. Actress Karen Grassle is 63. Movie director Neil Jordan is 57. Rock singer-musician Mike Peters (The Alarm) is 48. Actress Veronica Webb is 42. Actor Alexis Denisof is 41. Actress Tea Leoni is 41. Comedian Carrot Top is 40. Actress Lesley Boone is

39. Actor Sean Astin is 36. Singer Daniel Powter is 36. Latin singer Julio Iglesias Jr. is 34. Rhythm-and-blues singer Justin Jeffre is 34. Rock musician Richard Liles is 34. Actor Anson Mount is 34. Actress Rashida Jones is 31. Actor Justin Berfield is 21. Actors James and Oliver Phelps (“Harry Potter” movies) are 21.

Thought for Today: “He who never leaves his country is full of prejudices.” — Carlo Goldoni, Italian playwright (1707-1793).