Today is Feb. 9.
A dark chapter in U.S. history began on this date in 1950 when, during a speech in Wheeling, W. Va., Sen. Joseph McCarthy, R-Wis., charged the U.S. State Department was infested with communists. There would be congressional hearings, "witch hunts," and the blacklisting of Hollywood personalities and others before McCarthy was discredited and the "Red Scare" ended.
On this day in 1825, after no presidential candidate won the necessary majority, the House of Representatives elected John Quincy Adams the sixth president of the United States. Adams, the first U.S. president whose father (John Adams) also was president (the second being George W. Bush), would later do something no American president has ever done since -- he would serve 17 years in Congress following his presidential term.
The revolving doors to the office of the Soviet presidency turned on this date in 1984 when Yuri Andropov, in power only 15 months following the death of Leonid Brezhnev, died at age 69. He was succeeded by Konstantin Chernenko, who died 13 months later and was succeeded by Mikhail Gorbachev.
It was on this date in 1964 that the Beatles made the group's first appearance on "The Ed Sullivan Show." The performance was barely audible over the screams of the largely young female audience. Afterwards, D.J. Murray the K -- known as the "fifth Beatles" -- took John Lennon, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr to a Playboy Club. George Harrison stayed back at the hotel with a cold.
And in 1994, a grand jury convened in Santa Barbara, Calif., to hear evidence in the allegations of child molestation that had been leveled against pop star Michael Jackson. No charges were ever filed.
In sports, the solid silver trophy known today as the Davis Cup was first put up for competition on this date in 1900. It all began when American collegian Dwight Filley Davis challenged British tennis players to come across the Atlantic and compete against his Harvard team.
We now return you to the present, already in progress.