Today is Monday, April 2, the 93rd day of 2012. There are 273 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On April 2, 1912, the just-completed RMS Titanic left Belfast to begin its sea trials eight days before the start of its ill-fated maiden voyage.
On this date:
In 1513, Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon landed in present-day Florida.
In 1792, Congress passed the Coinage Act, which authorized establishment of the U.S. Mint.
In 1800, Ludwig van Beethoven premiered his Symphony No. 1 in C major, Op. 21, in Vienna.
In 1860, the first Italian Parliament met at Turin.
In 1917, President Woodrow Wilson asked Congress to declare war against Germany, saying, "The world must be made safe for democracy." (Congress declared war four days later.)
In 1932, aviator Charles A. Lindbergh and John F. Condon went to a cemetery in The Bronx, N.Y., where Condon turned over $50,000 to a man in exchange for Lindbergh's kidnapped son. (The child, who was not returned, was found dead the following month.)
In 1942, Glenn Miller and his orchestra recorded "American Patrol" at the RCA Victor studios in Hollywood.
In 1956, the soap operas "As the World Turns" and "The Edge of Night" premiered on CBS television.
In 1968, the science-fiction film "2001: A Space Odyssey," produced and directed by Stanley Kubrick, had its world premiere in Washington, D.C.
In 1974, French President Georges Pompidou died in Paris.
In 1982, several thousand troops from Argentina seized the disputed Falkland Islands, located in the south Atlantic, from Britain. (Britain seized the islands back the following June.)
In 1992, mob boss John Gotti was convicted in New York of murder and racketeering; he was later sentenced to life, and died in prison.
Ten years ago: Israel seized control of Bethlehem; Palestinian gunmen forced their way into the Church of the Nativity, the traditional birthplace of Jesus, where they began a 39-day standoff.
Five years ago: In its first case on climate change, the Supreme Court declared in a 5-4 ruling that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases were air pollutants under the Clean Air Act. A tsunami in the Solomon Islands killed at least 50 people. Florida won its second consecutive college basketball championship, beating Ohio State 84-75; the Gators became the first team to repeat since Duke in 1991-92. Coaches Phil Jackson and Roy Williams were among those named to the Basketball Hall of Fame.
One year ago: Highly radioactive water leaked into the sea from a crack at Japan's stricken nuclear power plant; meanwhile, earthquake-tsunami survivors complained that the government was not paying enough heed to victims. Connecticut's Geno Auriemma, Miami's Katie Meier and Stanford's Tara VanDerveer were named co-recipients of The Associated Press' coach of the year award. Maya Moore was named player of the year for the second time in three seasons after leading Connecticut to another spectacular year.
Today's Birthdays: Actress Rita Gam is 84. Actress Sharon Acker is 77. Singer Leon Russell is 70. Jazz musician Larry Coryell is 69. Actress Linda Hunt is 67. Singer Emmylou Harris is 65. Social critic and author Camille Paglia is 65. Actor Ron Palillo is 63. Actress Pamela Reed is 63. Rock musician Dave Robinson (The Cars) is 59. Country singer Buddy Jewell is 51. Actor Christopher Meloni is 51. Singer Keren Woodward (Bananarama) is 51. Country singer Billy Dean is 50. Actor Clark Gregg is 50. Actress Jana Marie Hupp is 48. Rock musician Greg Camp is 45. Rock musician Tony Fredianelli (Third Eye Blind) is 43. Actress Roselyn Sanchez is 39. Country singer Jill King is 37. Actor Adam Rodriguez is 37. Actor Jeremy Garrett is 36. Actor Michael Fassbender is 35. Rock musician Jesse Carmichael (Maroon 5) is 33. Actress Bethany Joy Lenz is 31. Singer Lee Dewyze (TV: "American Idol") is 26. Actor Jesse Plemons is 24. Singer Aaron Kelly (TV: "American Idol") is 19.
Thought for Today: "Living is a form of not being sure, not knowing what next or how. The moment you know how, you begin to die a little." -- Agnes de Mille, American dancer-choreographer (1905-1993).