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Today in History: January 5, 'Waiting for Godot' premieres in Paris

Today in History

Today is Friday, Jan. 5, the fifth day of 2024. There are 361 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On Jan. 5, 1953, Samuel Beckett's two-act tragicomedy "Waiting for Godot," considered a classic of the Theater of the Absurd, premiered in Paris.

On this date:

In 1896, an Austrian newspaper, Wiener Presse, reported the discovery by German physicist Wilhelm Roentgen (RENT'-gun) of a type of radiation that came to be known as X-rays.

In 1914, auto industrialist Henry Ford announced he was going to pay workers $5 for an 8-hour day, as opposed to $2.34 for a 9-hour day. (Employees still worked six days a week; the 5-day work week was instituted in 1926.)

In 1925, Democrat Nellie Tayloe Ross of Wyoming took office as America's first female governor, succeeding her late husband, William, following a special election.

In 1933, construction began on the Golden Gate Bridge. (Work was completed four years later.)

In 1943, educator and scientist George Washington Carver, who was born into slavery, died in Tuskegee, Alabama, at about age 80.

In 1949, in his State of the Union address, President Harry S. Truman labeled his administration the Fair Deal.

In 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower proposed assistance to countries to help them resist Communist aggression in what became known as the Eisenhower Doctrine.

In 1972, President Richard Nixon announced that he had ordered development of the space shuttle.

In 1994, Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill, former speaker of the House of Representatives, died in Boston at age 81.

In 1998, Sonny Bono, the 1960s pop star-turned-politician, was killed when he struck a tree while skiing at the Heavenly Ski Resort on the Nevada-California state line; he was 62.

In 2004, foreigners arriving at U.S. airports were photographed and had their fingerprints scanned in the start of a government effort to keep terrorists out of the country.

In 2011, John Boehner (BAY'-nur) was elected speaker as Republicans regained control of the House of Representatives on the first day of the new Congress.

In 2022, Australia denied entry to tennis star Novak Djokovic, who was seeking to play for a 10th Australian Open title later in the month; authorities canceled his visa because he failed to meet the requirements for an exemption to COVID-19 vaccination rules.

In 2023, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his armed forces to observe a unilateral 36-hour cease-fire in Ukraine for the Orthodox Christmas holiday, the first such sweeping truce move in the nearly 11-month-old war.

Today's Birthdays: Actor Robert Duvall is 93. Juan Carlos, former King of Spain, is 86. Singer-musician Athol Guy (The Seekers) is 84. Actor-director Diane Keaton is 78. Actor Ted Lange (lanj) is 76. Rock musician Chris Stein (Blondie) is 74. Former CIA Director George Tenet is 71. Actor Pamela Sue Martin is 71. Actor Clancy Brown is 65. Singer Iris Dement is 63. Actor Suzy Amis is 62. Actor Ricky Paull Goldin is 59. Actor Vinnie Jones is 59. Rock musician Kate Schellenbach (Luscious Jackson) is 58. Actor Joe Flanigan is 57. Talk show host/dancer-choreographer Carrie Ann Inaba is 56. Rock musician Troy Van Leeuwen (Queens of the Stone Age) is 56. Actor Heather Paige Kent is 55. Rock singer Marilyn Manson is 55. Actor Shea Whigham is 55. Actor Derek Cecil is 51. Actor-comedian Jessica Chaffin is 50. Actor Bradley Cooper is 49. Actor January Jones is 46. Actor Brooklyn Sudano is 43. Actor Franz Drameh is 31.