Today in History
Today is Tuesday, Sept. 1, the 245th day of 2020. There are 121 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On September 1, 1945, Americans received word of Japan’s formal surrender that ended World War II. (Because of the time difference, it was Sept. 2 in Tokyo Bay, where the ceremony took place.)
On this date:
In 1894, the Great Hinckley Fire destroyed Hinckley, Minnesota, and five other communities, killing more than 400 people.
In 1923, the Japanese cities of Tokyo and Yokohama were devastated by an earthquake that claimed some 140,000 lives.
In 1939, World War II began as Nazi Germany invaded Poland.
In 1941, the first municipally owned parking building in the United States opened in Welch, W. Va.
In 1942, U.S. District Court Judge Martin I. Welsh, ruling from Sacramento, Calif., on a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of Fred Korematsu, upheld the wartime detention of Japanese-Americans as well as Japanese nationals.
In 1969, a coup in Libya brought Moammar Gadhafi to power.
In 1972, American Bobby Fischer won the international chess crown in Reykjavik (RAY’-kyuh-vik), Iceland, as Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union resigned before the resumption of Game 21. An arson fire at the Blue Bird Cafe in Montreal, Canada, claimed 37 lives.
In 1983, 269 people were killed when a Korean Air Lines Boeing 747 was shot down by a Soviet jet fighter after the airliner entered Soviet airspace.
In 1985, a U.S.-French expedition located the wreckage of the Titanic on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean roughly 400 miles off Newfoundland.
In 2005, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin issued a “desperate SOS” as his city descended into anarchy amid the flooding left by Hurricane Katrina.
In 2009, Vermont’s law allowing same-sex marriage went into effect.
In 2018, at a nearly three-hour memorial service for the late Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain in Washington, McCain’s daughter and two former presidents led a public rebuke of President Donald Trump’s divisive politics and called for a return to civility among the nation’s leaders.
Ten years ago: President Barack Obama convened a new round of ambitious Mideast peace talks at the White House as he hosted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the first face-to-face negotiations in nearly two years. A man upset with the Discovery Channel’s programming took two employees and a security officer hostage at the network’s headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland; police shot and killed the gunman, James Jae Lee, and all three hostages escaped safely.
Five years ago: President Barack Obama stared down a melting glacier in Alaska in a dramatic use of his presidential pulpit to sound the alarm on climate change. Invoking “God’s authority,” Rowan County, Kentucky, Clerk Kim Davis denied marriage licenses to gay couples again in direct defiance of the federal courts, and vowed not to resign, even under the pressure of steep fines or jail. Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, a police officer for Fox Lake, Illinois, was found shot to death after reporting he was pursuing a group of men; authorities eventually concluded that Gliniewicz’s death was a suicide. Actor Dean Jones, 84, died in Los Angeles.
One year ago: Hurricane Dorian struck the northern Bahamas as a catastrophic Category 5 storm with record 185 mph winds that ripped off roofs and overturned cars. South Carolina’s governor ordered a mandatory evacuation of the entire coast of the state amid the threat from Dorian. The United States and China put into effect their latest tariff increases on each other’s goods; the 15% U.S. taxes applied to about $112 billion of Chinese imports. Actor and comedian Kevin Hart suffered a serious back injury when the vintage muscle car in which he was riding went out of control on a Southern California highway, careening down an embankment and into a tree. Thousands of people who were gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the traditional Sunday noon appearance by the pope were left waiting for several minutes; Francis explained that he had been stuck in an elevator. Justin Verlander pitched his third career no-hitter, striking out 14 to lead the Houston Astros past the Toronto Blue Jays, 2-0.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor George Maharis is 92. Conductor Seiji Ozawa (SAY’-jee oh-ZAH’-wah) is 85. Attorney and law professor Alan Dershowitz is 82. Comedian-actor Lily Tomlin is 81. Actor Don Stroud is 77. Conductor Leonard Slatkin is 76. Singer Archie Bell is 76. Singer Barry Gibb is 74. Rock musician Greg Errico is 72. Talk show host Dr. Phil McGraw is 70. Singer Gloria Estefan is 63. Former White House Press Secretary Dee Dee Myers is 59. Jazz musician Boney James is 59. Singer-musician Grant Lee Phillips (Grant Lee Buffalo) is 57. Country singer-songwriter Charlie Robison is 56. Retired NBA All-Star Tim Hardaway is 54. Rap DJ Spigg Nice (Lost Boyz) is 50. Actor Ricardo Antonio Chavira is 49. Actor Maury Sterling is 49. Rock singer JD Fortune is 47. Actor Scott Speedman is 45. Country singer Angaleena Presley (Pistol Annies) is 44. Actor Boyd Holbrook is 39. Actor Zoe Lister-Jones is 38. Rock musician Joe Trohman is 36. Actor Aisling (ASH’-ling) Loftus is 30.