Today is Wednesday, April 30, the 121st day of 2008. There are 245 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On April 30, 1945, as Russian troops approached his Berlin bunker, Adolf Hitler committed suicide along with his wife of one day, Eva Braun.

On this date:

In 1789, George Washington took office in New York as the first president of the United States.

In 1803, the United States purchased the Louisiana Territory from France for 60 million francs, the equivalent of about $15 million.

In 1812, Louisiana became the 18th state of the Union.

In 1948, the charter of the Organization of American States was signed in Bogota, Colombia.

In 1958, the American Association of Retired Persons (later simply AARP) was founded in Washington, D.C., by Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus.

In 1958, Britain's Life Peerages Act 1958 allowed women to become members of the House of Lords.

In 1968, New York City police forcibly removed student demonstrators occupying five buildings at Columbia University.

In 1970, President Nixon announced the U.S. was sending troops into Cambodia, an action that sparked widespread protest.

In 1973, President Nixon announced the resignations of top aides H.R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman, along with Attorney General Richard G. Kleindienst and White House counsel John Dean.

In 1988, Gen. Manuel Noriega, waving a machete, vowed at a rally to keep fighting U.S. efforts to oust him as Panama's military ruler.

Ten years ago: President Clinton questioned the conduct of Whitewater prosecutor Kenneth Starr and dismissed Republican challenges to his own character as "high level static." United and Delta airlines formed an alliance that would control one-third of all U.S. passenger seats. A man set himself on fire and shot himself to death on a Los Angeles area freeway in a scene captured on live television.

Five years ago: International mediators presented Israeli and Palestinian leaders with a new Middle East "road map," a U.S.-backed blueprint for ending 31 months of violence and establishing a Palestinian state. Mahmoud Abbas took office as Palestinian prime minister. The U.S. Navy withdrew from its disputed Vieques bombing range in Puerto Rico, prompting celebrations by islanders.

One year ago: A British judge sentenced five al-Qaida-linked men, all British citizens, to life in prison for plotting to attack London targets, including a nightclub, power plants and shopping mall, with bombs. An Israeli government probe faulted Prime Minister Ehud Olmert for what it called "very severe failures" in Israel's war with Hezbollah militants in Lebanon. Actor Tom Poston died in Los Angeles at age 85.

Today's Birthdays: Actress Cloris Leachman is 82. Singer Willie Nelson is 75. Actor Gary Collins is 70. Actor Burt Young is 68. Singer Bobby Vee is 65. Actress Jill Clayburgh is 64. Movie director Allan Arkush is 60. Actor Perry King is 60. Singer Merrill Osmond is 55. Movie director Jane Campion is 54. Actor Paul Gross is 49. Basketball coach Isiah Thomas is 47. Country musician Robert Reynolds (The Mavericks) is 46. Actor Adrian Pasdar is 43. Rapper Turbo B (Snap) is 41. Rock musician Clark Vogeler is 39. Rhythm-and-blues singer Chris "Choc" Dalyrimple (Soul for Real) is 37. Rock musician Chris Henderson (3 Doors Down) is 37. Country singer Carolyn Dawn Johnson is 37. Rock singer J.R. Richards (Dishwalla) is 36. Actress Lisa Dean Ryan is 36. Rhythm-and-blues singer Akon is 35. Rhythm-and-blues singer Jeff Timmons (98 Degrees) is 35. Actor Johnny Galecki is 33. Singer-musician Cole Deggs (Cole Deggs and the Lonesome) is 32. Rapper Lloyd Banks is 26. Actress Kirsten Dunst is 26. Country singer Tyler Wilkinson (The Wilkinsons) is 24.

Thought for Today: "More persons, on the whole, are humbugged by believing nothing, than by believing too much." _ P.T. Barnum, American showman (1810-1891).