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In 1928, Jacob Epstein bought an original cast of Auguste Rodin's famous statue The Thinker (above), which was valued at $20,000. Epstein, who was a member of the Art Commission, donated it to the Baltimore Museum of Art. At the presentation, he encouraged the city to add 2 cents to the tax rate to fund future purchases of art. (Handout photo, Baltimore Museum of Art)

1851: Isaac Singer was granted a patent for his sewing machine.

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1898: Hawaii was annexed by the United States.

1953: The Soviet Union conducted a secret test of its first hydrogen bomb.

1972: The last American combat ground troops left Vietnam.

Compiled by Jessica D. Evans and Paul McCardell.

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