Today in history: January 2
Teddy Roosevelt struck down prejudice in the post office, Nixon lowered the U.S. speed limit, and more
President Theodore Roosevelt at his desk, circa 1905.
President Theodore Roosevelt at his desk, circa 1905. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Jan. 2, 1903: President Roosevelt shut down the post office in Indianola, Miss., because it refused to accept a black and female postmaster.

Jan. 2, 1974: To save gas during an OPEC oil embargo, President Nixon signed a bill lowering the U.S. speed limit to 55 mph. Because of gasoline shortages, Nixon earlier asked Americans to drive less and for gas stations to close for 27 hours on weekends. Nixon also called for limits on commercial air travel and during the holidays urged citizens not hang to Christmas lights.

Jan. 2, 1980: Reacting to the December 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, President Jimmy Carter asked the Senate to postpone action on the SALT II nuclear weapons treaty and recalled the U.S. ambassador to Moscow. These actions sent a message that the age of detente and the friendlier diplomatic and economic relations that were established between the United States and Soviet Union during President Richard Nixon's administration (1969-74) had ended.

Quote of the Day

"Our independence will depend on maintaining and achieving self-sufficiency in energy." — Richard Nixon

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