A Blast from the Past

By United Press International  |  April 3, 2003 at 3:00 AM
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Today is April 3.

The Pony Express postal service began on this date in 1860 when the first riders left St. Joseph, Mo., heading west, and Sacramento, Calif., heading east. For $5 an ounce, letters were delivered within 10 days. The Pony Express lasted less than two years, becoming obsolete when the overland telegraph was completed in Oct. 1861.

The man suspected of being the Unabomber was nabbed on this date in 1996. FBI agents raided a remote Montana cabin and arrested former college professor Theodore Kaczynski, accusing him of being the person whose mail bombs had killed three people and injured 23 more since the 1970s. It was Kaczynski's brother who had provided the lead that led to his capture.

The longest strike in sports history ended on this date in 1995 when the owners and players of major-league baseball approved an agreement. The walkout had begun the previous August.

Richard M. Daley was elected mayor of Chicago on this date in 1989. It was the office his father, Richard J. Daley, had held for 21 years. The elder Daley was mayor of Chicago for so long that a store in his neighborhood had a sign in the window that read "Re-elect Daley" -- in neon.

It was on this date back in 1882 that Jesse James, one of history's most notorious outlaws, was shot to death at his home where he was known as "Mr. Howard." The shooter was Robert Ford, a former gang member, who hoped to get the reward posted on James' head.

And it was on this date in 1959 that the BBC banned the Coasters' single "Charlie Brown" because of the word "spitball." Times -- and tolerance-- have changed.

We now return you to the present, already in progress.

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