(1770) – The United States Supreme Court convenes for the first time in New York City. The Supreme Court was formed as the highest federal court in the country and serves as the final interpreter of constitutional law.
As the judicial branch of the three branch system, seven justices serve on the Supreme Court, each of whom are appointed by the president and approved by congress.
(1887) – In Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, the first Groundhog Day is observed. According to legend, if a groundhog sees his shadow and retreats back into his hole, there will be six more weeks of winter. If not, then spring will come early!
Today, Punxsutawney Phil serves as the nation’s lead prognosticating groundhog. Each year a celebration is held in his town in Pennsylvania where thousands of people gather to see if the groundhog will see his shadow or not.
(1913) – Grand Central Terminal opens in New York City. With 44 platforms serving 67 trains, Grand Central is the largest terminal in the world. It was built in the heyday of railroad travel and remains as an iconic stop for tourists in NYC.
The station has restaurants, shopping markets, pharmacies, coffee shops, and more. In 1999, Grand Central Terminal was inducted into the North American Railway Hall of Fame in the ‘Facilities and Structures’ category.
(1967) – The American Basketball Association was formed and directly competed with the already established National Basketball Association. The ABA distinguished itself with a flashier style of play highlighted with huge dunks and snazzy passing. The two leagues combined in 1976 and several ABA teams were dissolved as part of the merger. The Indiana Pacers, San Antonio Spurs, New Jersey Nets, and Denver Nuggets were all members of the ABA before becoming NBA franchises.
(1980) – Reports surfaced that the FBI had conducted a sting operation proving that U.S. Congressmen had been taking bribes from a fake sheik. The situation became known as “Abscam.” It was the first time in American history that video proof was used to show members of Congress accepting bribes. The situation inspired the 2013 movie “American Hustle.”