The Dallas Morning News
TODAY IN HISTORY
1861 The American Civil War began as Confederate forces opened fire on Fort Sumter in South Carolina.
1945 President Franklin D. Roosevelt died of a cerebral hemorrhage at 63; he was succeeded by Vice President Harry S. Truman.
1955 The Salk vaccine against polio was declared safe and effective.
1961 Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first man to fly in space, orbiting the Earth once.
1963 Civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. was jailed in Birmingham, Ala., charged with contempt of court and parading without a permit. (During his time behind bars, King wrote his “Letter From Birmingham Jail.”)
1990 In its first meeting, East Germany’s first democratically elected parliament acknowledged responsibility for the Nazi Holocaust, and asked the forgiveness of Jews and others.