Today in History
Today is Thursday, Sept. 21, the 264th day of 2023. There are 101 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlights in History:
On Sept. 21, 1981, the Senate unanimously confirmed the nomination of Sandra Day O’Connor to become the first female justice on the Supreme Court.
On this date:
In 1792, the French National Convention voted to abolish the monarchy.
In 1937, “The Hobbit,” by J.R.R. Tolkien, was first published by George Allen & Unwin, Ltd. of London.
In 1938, a hurricane struck parts of New York and New England, causing widespread damage and claiming some 700 lives.
In 1957, the legal mystery-drama “Perry Mason,” starring Raymond Burr, premiered on CBS.
In 1961, the first Boeing CH-47 Chinook military helicopter made its first hovering flight.
In 1973, the Senate confirmed Henry Kissinger to be Secretary of State.
In 1982, National Football League players began a 57-day strike, their first regular-season walkout ever.
In 1985, in North Korea and South Korea, relatives who had been separated for decades were allowed to visit each other as both countries opened their borders in an unprecedented family-reunion program.
In 1989, Hurricane Hugo crashed into Charleston, South Carolina; the storm was blamed for 56 deaths in the Caribbean and 29 in the United States.
In 1996, President Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act denying federal recognition of same-sex marriages, a day after saying the law should not be used as an excuse for discrimination, violence or intimidation against gays and lesbians.
In 2001, Congress gave $15 billion to the airline industry, which was suffering mounting economic losses since the Sept. 11 attacks.
In 2011, Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer, two Americans jailed in Iran as spies, left Tehran for the Gulf state of Oman, closing a high-profile drama that brought more than two years of hope and heartbreak for their families.
In 2017, millions of Puerto Ricans faced the prospect of weeks or months without power in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.
In 2018, President Donald Trump directly challenged by name the woman accusing his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, saying that if the attack on Christine Blasey Ford had been as bad as she claimed, then she would have filed charges.
In 2021, Melvin Van Peebles, a playwright, musician and movie director whose work ushered in the “blaxploitation” films of the 1970s, died at his New York home at age 89.
In 2022, Russia’s Vladimir Putin ordered a mobilization of reservists for the first time in the nation since World War II nearly seven months after invading Ukraine.
Today’s Birthdays: Author-comedian Fannie Flagg is 82. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer is 80. Former Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear is 79. Musician Don Felder is 76. Author Stephen King is 76. Basketball Hall of Famer Artis Gilmore is 74. Actor-comedian Bill Murray is 73. Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is 66. Movie producer-writer Ethan Coen is 66. Actor-comedian Dave Coulier is 64. Actor David James Elliott is 63. Actor Serena Scott Thomas is 62. Actor Nancy Travis is 62. Actor Rob Morrow is 61. Actor Angus Macfadyen is 60. Retired MLB All-Star Cecil Fielder is 60. Actor Cheryl Hines is 58. Country singer Faith Hill is 56. Rock musician Tyler Stewart (Barenaked Ladies) is 56. Country singer Ronna Reeves is 55. Actor-talk show host Ricki Lake is 55. Actor Billy Porter is 54. Actor Rob Benedict is 53. Actor James Lesure is 52. Actor Alfonso Ribeiro (rih-BEHR’-oh) is 52. Actor Luke Wilson is 52. Actor Paulo Costanzo is 45. Actor Bradford Anderson is 44. Actor Autumn Reeser is 43. TV personality Nicole Richie is 42. Actor Maggie Grace is 40. Actor Joseph Mazzello is 40. Actor Ahna O’Reilly is 39. Rapper Wale (WAH’-lay) is 39. R&B singer Jason Derulo is 37. Actor Ryan Guzman is 36. Actor Nikolas Brino is 25.