Tuesday, September 11, 2012

This day in history

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[September 11, 2012]  (AP)  Today is Tuesday, Sept. 11, the 255th day of 2012. There are 111 days left in the year. This is Patriot Day.

Today's highlight in history:

On Sept. 11, 2001, nearly 3,000 people were killed on America's worst day of terrorism as 19 al-Qaida terrorists hijacked four passenger jetliners. Two planes smashed into New York's World Trade Center, causing the twin towers to fall; one plowed into the Pentagon; and the fourth was crashed into a field in western Pennsylvania.

On this date:

In 1777, during the American Revolution, forces under Gen. George Washington were defeated by the British in the Battle of Brandywine.

In 1814, an American fleet scored a decisive victory over the British in the Battle of Lake Champlain in the War of 1812.

In 1857, the Mountain Meadows Massacre took place in present-day southern Utah as a 120-member Arkansas immigrant party was slaughtered by Mormon militiamen aided by Paiute Indians.

In 1862, short-story writer William Sydney Porter, better known as "O. Henry," was born in Greensboro, N.C.

In 1922, the British Mandate for Palestine went into effect.

In 1936, Boulder Dam (now Hoover Dam) began operation as President Franklin D. Roosevelt pressed a key in Washington to signal the startup of the dam's first hydroelectric generator.

In 1941, groundbreaking took place for the Pentagon, now headquarters of the U.S. Department of Defense. In a speech that drew accusations of anti-Semitism, Charles A. Lindbergh told an America First rally in Des Moines, Iowa, "the British, the Jewish and the Roosevelt administration" were pushing the United States toward war.

In 1954, the Miss America pageant made its network TV debut on ABC; Miss California, Lee Meriwether, was crowned the winner.

In 1962, The Beatles completed their first single for EMI, "Love Me Do" and "P.S. I Love You," at EMI studios in London.

In 1971, former Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev died at age 77.

In 1972, the troubled Munich Summer Olympics ended. Northern California's Bay Area Rapid Transit system began operations.

In 1987, the movie thriller "Fatal Attraction," starring Michael Douglas and Glenn Close, premiered.

Ten years ago: With words of comfort and resolve, President George W. Bush joined the nation in remembering "how it began and who fell first" in the terrorist attacks of one year earlier. Defiant Palestinian legislators forced the resignation of Yasser Arafat's 21-member Cabinet. Death claimed actress Kim Hunter at age 79 and football Hall of Famer Johnny Unitas at age 69.

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Five years ago: Russian state television reported that Russia's military had successfully tested what it described as the world's most powerful non-nuclear air-delivered bomb, nicknamed the "dad of all bombs." A militant group called Islamic Jihad Union claimed responsibility for foiled bombings that targeted Ramstein U.S. Air Base as well as U.S. and Uzbek consulates in Germany. A new Osama bin Laden videotape was released on the sixth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks. China signed an agreement to prohibit the use of lead paint on toys exported to the United States.

One year ago: The nation, and the world, paused to remember the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In New York, a tree-covered memorial plaza at ground zero opened to the families of the victims for the first time. President Barack Obama, after visiting the sites where terrorists struck, declared: "It will be said of us that we kept that faith; that we took a painful blow, and emerged stronger." Australian Sam Stosur beat Serena Williams, pulling off a 6-2, 6-3 upset in the U.S. Open for her first Grand Slam title.

Today's birthdays: Actress Betsy Drake is 89. Sen. Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii, is 88. Actor Earl Holliman is 84. Comedian Tom Dreesen is 73. Movie director Brian De Palma is 72. Rock singer-musician Jack Ely (The Kingsmen) is 69. Rock musician Mickey Hart (The Dead) is 69. Singer-musician Leo Kottke is 67. Actor Phillip Alford is 64. Actress Amy Madigan is 62. Rock singer-musician Tommy Shaw (Styx) is 59. Sports reporter Lesley Visser is 59. Actor Reed Birney is 58. Singer-songwriter Diane Warren is 56. Musician Jon Moss (Culture Club) is 55. Actor Scott Patterson is 54. Rock musician Mick Talbot (The Style Council) is 54. Actress Roxann Dawson is 54. Actor John Hawkes is 53. Actress Anne Ramsay is 52. Actress Virginia Madsen is 51. Actress Kristy McNichol is 50. Musician-composer Moby is 47. Business reporter Maria Bartiromo is 45. Singer Harry Connick Jr. is 45. Rock musician Bart Van Der Zeeuw is 44. Actress Taraji (tuh-RAH'-jee) P. Henson is 42. Actress Laura Wright is 42. Rock musician Jeremy Popoff (Lit) is 41. Blogger Markos Moulitsas is 41. Singer Brad Fischetti (LFO) is 37. Rapper Mr. Black is 35. Rock musician Jon Buckland (Coldplay) is 35. Rapper Ludacris is 35. Rock singer Ben Lee is 34. Actor Ryan Slattery is 34. Actor Tyler Hoechlin (HEK'-lihn) is 25. Country singer Charles Kelley (Lady Antebellum) is 31.

Thought for today: "Each of us, when our day's work is done, must seek our ideal, whether it be love or pinochle or lobster a la Newburg, or the sweet silence of the musty bookshelves." -- O. Henry (1862-1910)

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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