Today is Saturday, Dec. 1, the 336th day of 2012. There are 30 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Dec. 1, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln sent his Second Annual Message to Congress, which was read aloud by the Secretary of the Senate. In it, Lincoln called for the abolition of slavery, saying that "in giving freedom to the slave, we assure freedom to the free," and toward the end of his message, wrote: "Fellow-citizens, we can not escape history. We of this Congress and this Administration will be remembered in spite of ourselves."
On this date:
In 1824, the presidential election was turned over to the U.S. House of Representatives when a deadlock developed between John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, William H. Crawford and Henry Clay. (Adams ended up the winner.)
In 1860, the Charles Dickens novel "Great Expectations" was first published in weekly serial form.
In 1921, the Navy flew the first nonrigid dirigible to use helium; the C-7 traveled from Hampton Roads, Va., to Washington, D.C.
In 1934, Soviet communist official Sergei M. Kirov, an associate of Josef Stalin, was assassinated in Leningrad, resulting in a massive purge.
In 1941, Japan's Emperor Hirohito approved waging war against the United States, Britain and the Netherlands after his government rejected U.S. demands contained in the Hull Note.
In 1942, nationwide gasoline rationing went into effect in the United States.
In 1952, the New York Daily News ran a front-page story on Christine Jorgensen's sex-reassignment surgery with the headline, "Ex-GI Becomes Blonde Beauty".
In 1955, Rosa Parks, a black seamstress, was arrested after refusing to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery, Ala., city bus; the incident sparked a year-long boycott of the buses by blacks.
In 1969, the U.S. government held its first draft lottery since World War II.
In 1973, David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, died in Tel Aviv at age 87.
In 1989, Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev met with Pope John Paul II at the Vatican.
In 1992, in Mineola, N.Y., Amy Fisher was sentenced to 5 to 15 years in prison for shooting and seriously wounding Mary Jo Buttafuoco. (Fisher served seven years.)
Ten years ago: Colombia's largest right-wing paramilitary group declared a unilateral cease-fire in its long-running battle against leftist rebels. Russia won its first Davis Cup title by rallying to beat defending champion France 3-2. Edward Latimer "Ned" Beach, the U.S. Navy captain who wrote the best-selling undersea thriller "Run Silent, Run Deep," died in Washington at age 84.
Five years ago: Police in Wichita, Kan., identified a body found days earlier as that of Emily Sander, a missing college student whose disappearance drew added attention after the discovery she was also an Internet porn model named "Zoey Zane." (A suspect, Israel Mireles, was convicted of rape and murder and sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole.) Four suspects were charged in Miami in the shooting death of Washington Redskins star Sean Taylor. (One ended up pleading guilty to second-degree murder; a fifth suspect was also charged.)
One year ago: Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, on a ground-breaking visit to Myanmar, challenged its leaders to continue and expand upon recent reforms, calling for the release of all political prisoners, an end to violent campaigns against ethnic minorities and a breaking of military ties with North Korea. Bobby Valentine was named the 45th manager of the Boston Red Sox. (However, he was fired after one season.)
Today's Birthdays: Former CIA director Stansfield Turner is 89. Singer Billy Paul is 78. Actor-director Woody Allen is 77. World Golf Hall of Famer Lee Trevino is 73. Singer Dianne Lennon (The Lennon Sisters) is 73. Country musician Casey Van Beek (The Tractors) is 70. Television producer David Salzman is 69. Rock singer-musician Eric Bloom (Blue Oyster Cult) is 68. Rock musician John Densmore (The Doors) is 68. Actress-singer Bette Midler is 67. Singer Gilbert O'Sullivan is 66. Actor Treat Williams is 61. Country singer Kim Richey is 56. Actress Charlene Tilton is 54. Actress-model Carol Alt is 52. Actor Jeremy Northam is 51. Producer-director Andrew Adamson is 46. Actor Nestor Carbonell is 45. Actress Golden Brooks is 42. Actress-comedian Sarah Silverman is 42. Actor Ron Melendez is 40. Contemporary Christian singer Bart Millard (MIL'-urd) is 40. Actor-writer-producer David Hornsby is 37. Singer Sarah Masen is 37. Rock musician Brad Delson (Linkin Park) is 35. Actor Nate Torrence is 35. Rock/Christian music singer-songwriter Mat Kearney is 34. Rock musician Mika Fineo (Filter) is 31. Actress Ashley Monique Clark is 24.
Thought for Today: "Life begins when a person first realizes how soon it will end." — Marcelene Cox, American writer.
(Above Advance for Use Saturday, Dec. 1)
Copyright 2012, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.