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Today In History – February 20 – George Washington Formally Created the U.S. Postal Service





1547: Edward VI of England Crowned: Edward VI (12 October 1537 – 6 July 1553) became King of England and Ireland on 28 January 1547 and was crowned on 20 February at the age of nine. The son of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour, Edward was the third monarch of the Tudor dynasty and England’s first ruler who was raised as a Protestant. More here

1792: President George Washington signs legislation creating the U.S. Postal Service: President Washington formally created the U.S. Postal Service with the signing of the Postal Service Act, which outlined in detail Congressional power to establish official mail routes. The act allowed for newspapers to be included in mail deliveries and made it illegal for postal officials to open anyone’s mail. In 1792, a young American nation of approximately 4 million people enjoyed federally funded postal services including 75 regional post offices and 2,400 miles of postal routes. The cost of sending a letter ranged from 6 cents to 12 cents. Under Washington, the Postal Service administration was headquartered in Philadelphia. In 1800, it followed other federal agencies to the nation’s new capital in Washington, D.C. More here

1872: New York City Metropolitan Museum of Art opens. The Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded in 1870 by a group of American citizens. The founders included businessmen and financiers, as well as leading artists and thinkers of the day, who wanted to open a museum to bring art and art education to the American people. It opened on February 20, 1872, and was originally located at 681 Fifth Avenue.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (colloquially The Met) is an art museum on the eastern edge of Central Park, along “Museum Mile” in New York City, United States. Its permanent collection contains more than two million works of art, divided into nineteen curatorial departments. The main building, often called “the Met”, is one of the world’s largest art galleries; there is also a much smaller second location, at “The Cloisters”, in Upper Manhattan, which features medieval art.  More here

1919: Amir of Afghanistan is assassinated: Habibullah Khan, the leader of Afghanistan who struggled to keep his country neutral in World War I in the face of strong internal support for Turkey and the Central Powers, is shot and killed while on a hunting trip. More here

1974: Atlanta Constitution editor is kidnapped: Reg Murphy, an editor of The Atlanta Constitution, is kidnapped after being lured from his home near the city. William Williams told the newspaperman that he had 300,000 gallons of heating oil to donate to the poor. The 33-year-old Williams abducted Murphy, who was well known for his anti-Vietnam War stance, at gunpoint. More here

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