Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Tuesday, September 15, the 258th day of 2015. There are 107 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On September 15, 1940, during the World War II Battle of Britain, the tide turned as the Royal Air Force inflicted heavy losses upon the Luftwaffe.

On this date:

In 1789, the U.S. Department of Foreign Affairs was renamed the Department of State.

In 1857, William Howard Taft — who served as President of the United States and as U.S. chief justice — was born in Cincinnati, Ohio.

In 1890, English mystery writer Agatha Christie was born in Torquay.

In 1935, the Nuremberg Laws deprived German Jews of their citizenship.

In 1950, during the Korean conflict, United Nations forces landed at Incheon in the south and began their drive toward Seoul (sohl).

In 1955, the novel “Lolita,” by Vladimir Nabokov, was first published in Paris.

In 1963, four black girls were killed when a bomb went off during Sunday services at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama. (Three Ku Klux Klansmen were eventually convicted for their roles in the blast.)

In 1965, the TV shows “Lost in Space” and “Green Acres” premiered on CBS.

In 1972, a federal grand jury in Washington indicted seven men in connection with the Watergate break-in.

In 1985, Nike began selling its “Air Jordan 1” sneaker.

In 1994, a tape recording of John Lennon singing with his teen-age band, The Quarrymen, in a Liverpool club on July 6, 1957, was sold at Sotheby’s for $122,500 (it was at this gig that Lennon first met Paul McCartney).

In 2000, the 2000 Summer Olympics opened in Sydney, Australia, with a seemingly endless parade of athletes and coaches and a spectacular display; Aborigine runner Cathy Freeman ignited an Olympic ring of fire.

Ten years ago: President George W. Bush, addressing the nation from storm-ravaged New Orleans, acknowledged the government had failed to respond adequately to Hurricane Katrina, and urged Congress to approve a massive reconstruction program. Hurricane Ophelia continued to lash the Outer Banks of North Carolina with rain and wind. Producer Sid Luft, who was credited with reviving the career of then-wife Judy Garland, died in Santa Monica, California, at age 89.

Five years ago: A mortar attack by Palestinian militants and airstrikes by Israel provided a grim backdrop as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas ended their latest round of peace talks still divided on major issues.

One year ago: U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, in Paris for an international meeting of diplomats, said he wouldn’t shut the door on the possibility of working with Iran against a common enemy in the Islamic State militant group, but that the two nations would not coordinate on military action. Hurricane Odile blazed a trail of destruction through Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula that leveled everything from ramshackle homes to luxury hotels and big-box stores. Two Vietnam War soldiers received the Medal of Honor from President Barack Obama in a White House ceremony, nearly 50 years after they’d thrown themselves into harm’s way to protect their brothers in combat. (Army Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. Adkins survived his injuries; Army Spc. Donald P. Sloat did not.)

Today’s Birthdays: Actor Forrest Compton is 90. Comedian Norm Crosby is 88. Actor Henry Darrow is 82. Baseball Hall-of-Famer Gaylord Perry is 77. Actress Carmen Maura is 70. Opera singer Jessye Norman is 70. Writer-director Ron Shelton is 70. Actor Tommy Lee Jones is 69. Movie director Oliver Stone is 69. Rock musician Kelly Keagy (KAY’-gee) (Night Ranger) is 63. Rock musician Mitch Dorge (Crash Test Dummies) is 55. Football Hall of Famer Dan Marino is 54. Actor Danny Nucci is 47. Rap DJ Kay Gee is 46. Actor Josh Charles is 44. Singer Ivette (EE’-veht) Sosa (Eden’s Crush) is 39. Actor Tom Hardy is 38. Actress Marisa Ramirez (TV: “Blue Bloods”) is 38. Pop-rock musician Zach Filkins (OneRepublic) is 37. Actor Dave Annable is 36. Actress Amy Davidson is 36. Britain’s Prince Harry is 31. TV personality Heidi Montag is 29. Actress Kate Mansi is 28.

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