Sunday, December 28, 2008

On December 28

On this day in ...

... 1973 (35 years ago today), U.S. President Richard M. Nixon signed into law the Endangered Species Act. It lists 2 categories of protected species, "threatened" and "endangered," and empowered 2 agencies, the Fish and Wildlife Service (logo at right) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service (NOAA), to implement protections. "In July of 2008, there were a total of 1,238 threatened or endangered animals protected under the act; and a total of 747 threatened or endangered plants protected under the act."

... 1522, a daughter, Margaret, was born out of wedlock to Charles V, then the Holy Roman Emperor, and Johanna Maria von der Gheest, a servant of a Flemish nobleman. Raised by aunts who were governors of the Netherlands, Margaret (left) -- known as Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Parma, Regent of the Netherlands -- governed the Netherlands in the name of her brother until her resignation in 1567. The Roman Catholic regent's rule was marked by erratic treatment of heretics.

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