Today in History

Published 12:01 am Saturday, September 22, 2018

Today is Saturday, Sept. 22, the 265th day of 2018. There are 100 days left in the year. Autumn arrives at 9:54 p.m. Eastern time.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Sept. 22, 1949, the Soviet Union exploded its first atomic bomb.

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On this date:

In 1776, during the Revolutionary War, Capt. Nathan Hale, 21, was hanged as a spy by the British in New York.

In 1792, the French First Republic was proclaimed.

In 1862, President Abraham Lincoln issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, declaring all slaves in rebel states should be free as of January 1, 1863.

In 1911, pitcher Cy Young, 44, gained his 511th and final career victory as he hurled a 1-0 shutout for the Boston Rustlers against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Forbes Field.

In 1927, Gene Tunney successfully defended his heavyweight boxing title against Jack Dempsey in the famous “long-count” fight in Chicago.

In 1950, Omar N. Bradley was promoted to the rank of five-star general, joining an elite group that included Dwight D. Eisenhower, Douglas MacArthur, George C. Marshall and Henry H. “Hap” Arnold.

In 1959, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev arrived in Iowa for a two-day stopover, during which he visited a corn farm, held talks with former Illinois Gov. Adlai Stevenson, and ate his first hot dog.

In 1961, the Interstate Commerce Commission issued rules prohibiting racial discrimination on interstate buses.

In 1975, Sara Jane Moore attempted to shoot President Gerald R. Ford outside a San Francisco hotel, but missed. (Moore served 32 years in prison before being paroled on December 31, 2007.)

In 1980, the Persian Gulf conflict between Iran and Iraq erupted into full-scale war.

In 1985, rock and country music artists participated in “FarmAid,” a concert staged in Champaign, Illinois, to help the nation’s farmers.

In 1993, 47 people were killed when an Amtrak passenger train fell off a bridge and crashed into Big Bayou Canot near Mobile, Alabama. (A tugboat pilot lost in fog pushed a barge into the railroad bridge, knocking the tracks 38 inches out of line just minutes before the train arrived.)

Ten years ago: Jury selection began in Washington for the federal corruption trial of Republican Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska. (Jurors later found that Stevens had lied on Senate financial disclosure forms to conceal hundreds of thousands of dollars in gifts and home renovations from a wealthy oil contractor, but the Justice Department later moved to dismiss the indictment because prosecutors had mishandled the case; Stevens lost his re-election bid.) Marjorie Knoller, whose dogs viciously attacked and killed her neighbor, Dianne Whipple, in their San Francisco apartment building in 2001, was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison after her second-degree murder conviction was reinstated.

Five years ago: President Barack Obama spoke at a memorial service for the 12 men and women killed in the Washington Navy Yard shooting, calling on Americans to raise their voices against gun violence. A pair of Sunni militant suicide bombers blew themselves up inside a church in Peshawar, Pakistan, killing 85 Christian worshippers. German Chancellor Angela Merkel led her conservatives to a stunning election victory. “Breaking Bad” won best drama series while “Modern Family” was recognized as best comedy series at the 65th annual Primetime Emmy Awards.

One year ago: As the scale of the damage from Hurricane Maria started to become clearer, Puerto Rican officials said they could not contact more than half of the communities in the U.S. territory, where all power had been knocked out to the island’s 3.4 million people. President Donald Trump said NFL owners should fire players who kneel during the national anthem. The federal government told election officials in 21 states that hackers had targeted their systems before the 2016 presidential election. Sen. John McCain declared his opposition to the GOP’s last-ditch effort to repeal and replace “Obamacare,” the second time in three months McCain had emerged as the destroyer of his party’s signature promise to voters.

Today’s Birthdays: Baseball Hall of Fame manager Tommy Lasorda is 91. Actress Anna Karina is 78. Former NBA Commissioner David Stern is 76. Actor Paul Le Mat is 73. Musician King Sunny Ade (ah-DAY’) is 72. Capt. Mark Phillips is 70. Rock singer David Coverdale (Deep Purple, Whitesnake) is 67. Actress Shari Belafonte is 64. Singer Debby Boone is 62. Country singer June Forester (The Forester Sisters) is 62. Singer Nick Cave is 61. Rock singer Johnette Napolitano is 61. Actress Lynn Herring is 61. Classical crossover singer Andrea Bocelli (an-DRAY’-ah boh-CHEL’-ee) is 60. Singer-musician Joan Jett is 60. Actor Scott Baio is 58. Actress Catherine Oxenberg is 57. Actress Bonnie Hunt is 57. Actor Rob Stone is 56. Actor Dan Bucatinsky (TV: “24: Legacy”) is 53. Musician Matt Sharp is 49. Rock musician Dave Hernandez is 48. Rapper Mystikal is 48. Rhythm-and-blues singer Big Rube (Society of Soul) is 47. Actor James Hillier (TV: “The Crown”) is 45. Actress Mireille Enos is 43. Actress Daniella Alonso is 40. Actor Michael Graziadei (GRAHT’-zee-uh-day-ee) is 39. Actress Ashley Drane (Eckstein) is 37. Actress Katie Lowes is 36. Rock musician Will Farquarson (Bastille) is 35. Actress Tatiana Maslany is 33. Actor Ukweli Roach (TV: “Blindspot”) is 32. Actor Tom Felton is 31. Actress Juliette Goglia is 23.