Today in History - Nov. 21

AP News
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Posted: Nov 21, 2009 12:00 AM

Today is Saturday, Nov. 21, the 325th day of 2009. There are 40 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On Nov. 21, 1934, the Cole Porter musical "Anything Goes," starring Ethel Merman as Reno Sweeney, opened on Broadway.

On this date:

In 1789, North Carolina became the 12th state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.

In 1922, Rebecca L. Felton of Georgia was sworn in as the first woman to serve in the U.S. Senate.

In 1927, picketing strikers at the Columbine Mine in northern Colorado were fired on by state police; six miners were killed.

In 1942, the Alaska Highway was formally opened.

In 1959, former heavyweight champion boxer and actor Max Baer died in Hollywood at age 50.

In 1969, the Senate voted down the Supreme Court nomination of Clement F. Haynsworth, 55-45, the first such rejection since 1930.

In 1973, President Richard Nixon's attorney, J. Fred Buzhardt, revealed the existence of an 18 1/2-minute gap in one of the White House tape recordings related to Watergate.

In 1979, a mob attacked the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan, killing two Americans.

In 1980, 87 people died in a fire at the MGM Grand Hotel-Casino in Las Vegas.

In 1989, the proceedings of Britain's House of Commons were televised live for the first time.

Ten years ago: President Bill Clinton, speaking at a conference in Florence, Italy, called on prosperous nations to spread global wealth by helping poor countries with Internet hookups, cell phones, debt relief and small loans. China completed its first unmanned test of a spacecraft meant to carry astronauts. Quentin Crisp, the eccentric writer, performer and raconteur best-known for his autobiography "The Naked Civil Servant," died in Manchester, England, at age 90.

Five years ago: President George W. Bush, trying to mend relations with Latin America, pledged during an economic summit in Chile to make a fresh push for stalled immigration reforms. Iraqi authorities set Jan. 30, 2005, as the date for the nation's first election since the collapse of Saddam Hussein's dictatorship. Six Wisconsin hunters were shot to death by Chai Soua Vang, an ethnic Hmong immigrant who was later sentenced to life in prison. The NBA suspended Indiana's Ron Artest for the rest of the season following a brawl that broke out at the end of a game against the Detroit Pistons; eight other players received shorter bans.

One year ago: Wall Street staged a comeback, with the major indexes jumping more than 5 percent and the Dow Jones industrials surging nearly 500 points. Somali pirates released a hijacked Greek-owned tanker, MV Genius, with all 19 crew members safe and the oil cargo intact after payment of a ransom. (The ship had been seized almost two months earlier.) Madonna and Guy Ritchie were granted a preliminary decree of divorce by a London court.

Today's Birthdays: Baseball Hall-of-Famer Stan Musial is 89. Actor Joseph Campanella is 82. Country singer Jean Shepard is 76. Actor Laurence Luckinbill is 75. Actress Marlo Thomas is 72. Actor Rick Lenz is 70. Singer Dr. John is 69. Actress Juliet Mills is 68. Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen is 66. Basketball Hall of Famer Earl Monroe is 65. Comedian-director Harold Ramis is 65. Television producer Marcy Carsey is 65. Actress Goldie Hawn is 64. Movie director Andrew Davis is 63. Rock musician Lonnie Jordan (War) is 61. Singer Livingston Taylor is 59. Actress-singer Lorna Luft is 57. Actress Cherry Jones is 53. Rock musician Brian Ritchie (The Violent Femmes) is 49. Gospel singer Steven Curtis Chapman is 47. Actress Nicollette Sheridan is 46. Singer-actress Bjork is 44. Pro and College Football Hall of Famer Troy Aikman is 43. Rhythm-and-blues singer Chauncey Hannibal (BLACKstreet) is 41. Rock musician Alex James (Blur) is 41. MLB All-Star player Ken Griffey, Jr. is 40. Rapper Pretty Lou (Lost Boyz) is 38. Actor/former football player Michael Strahan is 38. Country singer Kelsi Osborn (SHeDAISY) is 35. Singer-actress Lindsey Haun is 25. Actress Jena Malone is 25.

Thought for Today: "We are always doing, says he, something for posterity, but I would fain see posterity do something for us." _ Joseph Addison, English essayist and poet (1672-1719).