September 19, 2009 in Washington Voices

This day in history

 

Today is Saturday, Sept. 19, the 262nd day of 2009. There are 103 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight in history:

On Sept. 19, 1796, President George Washington’s farewell address was published. In it, the nation’s first chief executive wrote, “Observe good faith and justice towards all Nations; cultivate peace and harmony with all.”

On this date:

In 1777, during the Revolutionary War, American soldiers won the first Battle of Saratoga.

In 1783, Jacques Etienne Montgolfier launched a duck, a sheep and a rooster aboard a hot-air balloon at Versailles in France.

In 1881, the 20th president of the United States, James A. Garfield, died 21/2 months after being shot by Charles Guiteau; Chester Alan Arthur became president.

In 1934, Bruno Hauptmann was arrested in New York and charged with the kidnap-murder of Charles A. Lindbergh Jr.

In 1945, Nazi radio propagandist William Joyce, known as “Lord Haw-Haw,” was convicted of treason and sentenced to death by a British court.

In 1957, the United States conducted its first contained underground nuclear test, code-named “Rainier,” in the Nevada desert.

In 1959, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, visiting Los Angeles, reacted angrily upon being told that, for security reasons, he wouldn’t get to visit Disneyland.

In 1960, Cuban leader Fidel Castro, in New York to visit the United Nations, angrily checked out of the Shelburne Hotel in a dispute with the management; Castro accepted an invitation to stay at the Hotel Theresa in Harlem.

In 1989, a Paris-bound DC-10 belonging to French airline UTA was bombed over Niger, killing all 170 people on board. (A French court later convicted six Libyans in absentia for the bombing; Libya agreed in 2004 to pay $170 million in compensation, although it stopped short of acknowledging responsibility.)

Five years ago: Hu Jintao became the undisputed leader of China with the departure of former President Jiang Zemin from his top military post. Militants decapitated three hostages believed to be Iraqi Kurds in a videotape that surfaced hours after Iraq’s prime minister said that January elections would be held on schedule. The United States suffered its biggest Ryder Cup loss in 77 years as it lost to the Europeans, 18 1/2 to 9 1/2 . “The Sopranos” won best drama series at the Emmy Awards while “Arrested Development” won best comedy series.


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