On Feb. 3, 313, Constantine the Great and co-emperor Valerius Licinius met in Milan and signed a letter proclaiming a policy of religious freedom, known as the Edict of Milan, officially ending the persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire. Constantine ruled the western parts of the empire and actively promoted Christianity. Licinius ruled the eastern parts of the empire and, though a pagan, was accepting a policy of toleration toward Christianity.
On Feb. 3, 1944, U.S. troops captured the Marshall Islands, occupied by the Japanese since 1914 and used as a base for military operations. The loss of live was relatively small, with 400 Americans killed in the assault by 53,000 soldiers.