On this day: February 21

Published On: Feb 20 2013 11:46:53 PM CST   Updated On: Feb 21 2014 01:00:00 AM CST

The Washington Monument is dedicated, Alka-Seltzer is sold for the first time, the peace symbol is born, Malcolm X is assassinated, and Nixon heads to China, all on this day.

OTD February 21 - Nixon in China
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National Archives and Records Administration

1972: President Richard Nixon visits the People's Republic of China to normalize Sino-American relations. It marked the first time a U.S. president had visited the country, which at that time considered the U.S. one of its staunchest foes. During the week-long visit, Nixon and his advisers engaged in substantive discussions with China's leaders, including a meeting with Chairman Mao Zedong, while first lady Pat Nixon toured schools, factories and hospitals with the American press corps in tow.

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