Today is Thursday, Feb. 2, the 33rd day of 2012. There are 333 days left in the year. This is Groundhog Day.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Feb. 2, 1912, Frederick R. Law parachuted from the torch of the Statue of Liberty in a stunt filmed by Pathe News.
On this date:
In 1536, present-day Buenos Aires, Argentina, was founded by Pedro de Mendoza of Spain.
In 1653, New Amsterdam -- now New York City -- was incorporated.
In 1848, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, ending the Mexican-American War, was signed.
In 1882, Irish poet and novelist James Joyce was born near Dublin.
In 1887, Punxsutawney, Pa., held its first Groundhog Day festival.
In 1912, Broadway composer Burton Lane ("Finian's Rainbow") was born in New York City.
In 1922, the James Joyce novel "Ulysses" was published in Paris by Sylvia Beach's Shakespeare and Co. on Joyce's 40th birthday.
In 1942, a Los Angeles Times column by W.H. Anderson urged security measures against Japanese-Americans, arguing that a Japanese-American "almost inevitably ... grows up to be a Japanese, not an American."
In 1943, the remainder of Nazi forces from the Battle of Stalingrad surrendered in a major victory for the Soviets in World War II.
In 1961, hijackers of a Portuguese ocean liner, the Santa Maria, allowed the passengers and crew to disembark in Brazil, 11 days after seizing the ship. Chinese-American actress Anna May Wong died in Santa Monica, Calif., at age 56.
In 1971, Idi Amin, having seized power in Uganda, proclaimed himself president.
In 1992, longtime "Miss America" emcee Bert Parks died in La Jolla, Calif., at age 77.
Ten years ago: Inside the World Economic Forum in New York, foreign economic leaders criticized the United States for protectionist policies while outside, thousands of protesters demonstrated against global capitalism. Jim Kelly of the Buffalo Bills and Pittsburgh Steelers star John Stallworth were elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The NHL World All-Stars rallied to defeat North America 8-5.
Five years ago: Tornadoes killed 21 people in central Florida. A grim report from the world's leading climate scientists and government officials said that global warming was so severe, it would "continue for centuries" and that humans were to blame. Texas Gov. Rick Perry issued an order making Texas the first state to require that schoolgirls get vaccinated against HPV, a sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer.
One year ago: Supporters of President Hosni Mubarak charged into Cairo's central square on horses and camels brandishing whips while others rained firebombs from rooftops in what appeared to be an orchestrated assault against protesters trying to topple Egypt's leader of 30 years. The red swimsuit that helped make Farrah Fawcett a 1970s icon was donated to the Smithsonian's collection by her longtime companion, Ryan O'Neal, on what would have been the late actress' 64th birthday.
Today's Birthdays: Actress Elaine Stritch is 87. Former French President Valery Giscard d'Estaing is 86. Actor Robert Mandan is 80. Comedian Tom Smothers is 75. Rock singer-guitarist Graham Nash is 70. Actor Bo Hopkins is 70. Television executive Barry Diller is 70. Country singer Howard Bellamy (The Bellamy Brothers) is 66. TV chef Ina Garten is 64. Actor Jack McGee is 63. Actor Brent Spiner is 63. Rock musician Ross Valory (Journey) is 63. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, is 60. Model Christie Brinkley is 58. Actor Michael Talbott is 57. Actress Kim Zimmer is 57. Actor Michael T. Weiss is 50. Actor-comedian Adam Ferrara is 46. Rock musician Robert DeLeo (Army of Anyone; Stone Temple Pilots) is 46. Actress Jennifer Westfeldt is 42. Rock musician Ben Mize is 41. Rapper T-Mo is 40. Actress Marissa Jaret Winokur is 39. Actress Lori Beth Denberg is 36. Singer Shakira is 35. Country singer Blaine Larsen is 26.
Thought for Today: "Mistakes are the portals of discovery." -- James Joyce (1882-1941).