On this date

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - COMMUNITY -

In 1498, To­mas de Torque­mada, no­to­ri­ous for his role in the Span­ish In­qui­si­tion, died in Avila, Spain.

In 1857, the song “Jin­gle Bells” by James Pier­pont was copy­righted un­der its orig­i­nal ti­tle, “One Horse Open Sleigh.” (The song, while con­sid­ered a Christ­mas­time clas­sic, was ac­tu­ally writ­ten for Thanksgiving.)

In 1893, more than 100,000 set­tlers swarmed onto a sec­tion of land in Ok­la­homa known as the “Chero­kee Strip.”

In 1908, Gen­eral Mo­tors was founded in Flint, Michi­gan, by Wil­liam C. Du­rant.

In 1919, the Amer­i­can Le­gion re­ceived a na­tional char­ter from Con­gress.

In 1925, the Irv­ing Berlin song “Al­ways” (writ­ten for his fu­ture wife, Ellin Mackay) was pub­lished.

In 1953, “The Robe,” the first movie pre­sented in the widescreen process Cine­maS­cope, had its world pre­miere at the Roxy The­ater in New York.

In 1967, the TV se­ries “Man­nix,” star­ring Mike Con­nors as a pri­vate in­ves­ti­ga­tor, pre­miered on CBS.

In 1977, Maria Cal­las, the Amer­i­can-born prima donna famed for her lyric so­prano and fiery tem­per­a­ment, died in Paris at age 53.

In 1982, the mas­sacre of between 1,200 and 1,400 Pales­tinian men, women and chil­dren at the hands of Is­raelial­lied Chris­tian Pha­lange mili­ti­a­men be­gan in west Beirut’s Sabra and Shatila refugee camps.

In 1987, two dozen coun­tries signed the Mon­treal Pro­to­col, a treaty de­signed to save the Earth’s ozone layer by call­ing on na­tions to re­duce emis­sions of harm­ful chem­i­cals by the year 2000.

In 1994, a fed­eral jury in An­chor­age, Alaska, or­dered Exxon Corp. to pay $5 bil­lion in puni­tive dam­ages for the 1989 Exxon Valdez (valDEEZ’) oil spill (the U.S Supreme Court later re­duced that amount to $507.5 mil­lion). Two as­tro­nauts from the space shut­tle Dis­cov­ery went on the first un­teth­ered space­walk in ten years.

Ten years ago: Con­trac­tors for the U.S. se­cu­rity firm Black­wa­ter USA guard­ing a U.S. State De­part­ment con­voy in Bagh­dad opened fire on civil­ian ve­hi­cles, mis­tak­enly be­liev­ing they were un­der at­tack; 14 Iraqis died. A OneTwo-Go Air­lines pas­sen­ger plane crashed on the is­land of Phuket (poo-KET’), Thai­land, killing 90 peo­ple. O.J. Simp­son was ar­rested in the al­leged armed rob­bery of sports mem­o­ra­bilia col­lec­tors in Las Ve­gas. (Simp­son was later con­victed of kid­nap­ping and armed rob­bery and sen­tenced to nine to 33 years in prison; he’s due to be re­leased on pa­role in Oc­to­ber 2017.) The Phoenix Mercury beat the Detroit Shock 108-92 to win their first WNBA ti­tle. “The So­pra­nos” claimed its fi­nal Emmy award as best dra­matic se­ries; “30 Rock” won best com­edy se­ries.

Five years ago: In ap­pear­ances on Sun­day news shows, the U.S. am­bas­sador to the United Na­tions, Su­san Rice, said there was no ev­i­dence that the at­tack on the U.S. diplo­matic out­post in Beng­hazi, Libya, was pre­med­i­tated. But Libya’s in­terim pres­i­dent, Mo­hammed elMe­garif, told CBS he had no doubt at­tack­ers spent months plan­ning the as­sault and pur­posely chose the date, Septem­ber 11.

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