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This day in history

Wednesday, Feb. 27, is the 58th day of 2013. There are 307 days left in the year.

Today’s birthdays: Actress Joanne Woodward is 83. Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is 79. Actress Barbara Babcock is 76. Actor Howard Hesseman is 73. Actress Debra Monk is 64. Rock singer-musician Neal Schon (Journey) is 59. Rock musician Adrian Smith (Iron Maiden) is 56. Actor Timothy Spall is 56. Rock musician Paul Humphreys (Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark) is 53. Country singer Johnny Van Zant is 53. Rock musician Leon Mobley (Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals) is 52. Basketball Hall of Famer James Worthy is 52. Actor Adam Baldwin is 51. Actor Grant Show is 51. Rock musician Mike Cross (Sponge) is 48. Actor Donal Logue is 47. R&B singer Chilli (TLC) is 42. Rock musician Jeremy Dean (Nine Days) is 41. R&B singer Roderick Clark is 40. Country-rock musician Shonna Tucker (Drive-By Truckers) is 35. Chelsea Clinton is 33. R&B singer Bobby Valentino is 33. Singer Josh Groban is 32. Rock musician Jared Champion (Cage the Elephant) is 30. Actress Kate Mara is 30.

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In 1801, the District of Columbia was placed under the jurisdiction of Congress.

In 1911, inventor Charles F. Kettering demonstrated his electric automobile starter in Detroit by starting a Cadillac’s motor with just the press of a switch, instead of hand-cranking.

In 1922, the Supreme Court, in Leser v. Garnett, unanimously upheld the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which guaranteed the right of women to vote.

In 1933, Germany’s parliament building, the Reichstag, was gutted by fire. Chancellor Adolf Hitler, blaming the Communists, used the fire as justification for suspending civil liberties.

In 1939, the Supreme Court, in National Labor Relations Board v. Fansteel Metallurgical Corp., outlawed sit-down strikes.

In 1943, during World War II, Norwegian commandos launched a raid to sabotage a German-operated heavy water plant in Norway. The US government began circulating one-cent coins made of steel plated with zinc (the steel pennies proved very unpopular, since they were easily mistaken for dimes).

In 1951, the 22d Amendment to the Constitution, limiting a president to two terms of office, was ratified.

In 1960, the US Olympic hockey team defeated the Soviets, 3-2, at the Winter Games in Squaw Valley, Calif. (The US team went on to win the gold medal.)

In 1973, members of the American Indian Movement occupied the hamlet of Wounded Knee in South Dakota, the site of the 1890 massacre of Sioux men, women, and children. (The occupation lasted until May.)

In 1982, Wayne Williams was found guilty of murdering two of the 28 young blacks whose bodies were found in the Atlanta area over a 22-month period. (Williams, who was also blamed for 22 other deaths, has maintained his innocence.)

In 1991, during Operation Desert Storm, President George H.W. Bush declared that ‘‘Kuwait is liberated, Iraq’s army is defeated,’’ and announced that the allies would suspend combat operations at midnight, eastern time.

In 2003, children’s television host Fred Rogers died in Pittsburgh at age 74.

In 2008, William F. Buckley Jr., the author and conservative commentator, was found dead at his home in Stamford, Conn.; he was 82. Civil rights leader John Lewis dropped his support for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton in favor of Barack Obama.

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