Today is Wednesday, Nov. 9, the 313th day of 2011. There are 52 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Nov. 9, 1965, the great Northeast blackout occurred as a series of power failures lasting up to 13 1/2 hours left 30 million people in seven states and part of Canada without electricity.
On this date:
In 1872, fire destroyed nearly 800 buildings in Boston.
In 1918, it was announced that Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm II would abdicate. He then fled to the Netherlands.
In 1938, Nazis looted and burned synagogues as well as Jewish-owned stores and houses in Germany and Austria in a pogrom that became known as "Kristallnacht."
In 1953, Welsh author-poet Dylan Thomas died in New York at age 39.
In 1961, U.S. Air Force Maj. Robert M. White became the first pilot to fly an X-15 rocket plane at six times the speed of sound. The Beatles' future manager, Brian Epstein, first saw the group perform at The Cavern Club in Liverpool, England.
In 1963, twin disasters struck Japan as some 450 miners were killed in a coal-dust explosion, and about 160 people died in a train crash.
In 1967, a Saturn V rocket carrying an unmanned Apollo spacecraft blasted off from Cape Kennedy on a successful test flight.
In 1970, former French President Charles de Gaulle died at age 79.
In 1989, communist East Germany threw open its borders, allowing citizens to travel freely to the West; joyous Germans danced atop the Berlin Wall.
In 1991, singer-actor Yves Montand died near Paris at age 70.
Ten years ago: The northern alliance proclaimed victory over the Taliban in the city of Mazar-e-Sharif, the most significant prize in northern Afghanistan.
Five years ago: Republican Senator George Allen conceded defeat in the Virginia Senate race to Democrat Jim Webb, sealing the Democrats' control of Congress. Champion figure skater Michelle Kwan was appointed America's first public diplomacy envoy by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. CBS newsman Ed Bradley died in New York at age 65.
One year ago: Continuing his Asia tour, President Barack Obama flew from India to Indonesia, his home for four years of his youth. Former President George W. Bush officially kicked off the release of his memoir, "Decision Points," with a book-signing in Dallas. A special prosecutor cleared the CIA's former top clandestine officer and others of any charges for destroying agency videotapes showing waterboarding of terror suspects, but continued an investigation into whether the harsh questioning went beyond legal boundaries. Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki won his 10th straight Gold Glove, tying the AL record for Gold Gloves by an outfielder shared by Ken Griffey Jr. and Al Kaline.
Today's Birthdays: Baseball Hall of Famer Whitey Herzog is 80. Baseball Hall of Famer Bob Gibson is 76. Actor Charlie Robinson is 66. Movie director Bille August is 63. Actor Robert David Hall ("CSI") is 63. Actor Lou Ferrigno is 60. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, is 59. Gospel singer Donnie McClurkin is 52. Rock musician Dee Plakas (L7) is 51. Actress Ion Overman is 42. Rapper Pepa (Salt-N-Pepa) is 42. Rapper Scarface (Geto Boys) is 41. Blues singer Susan Tedeschi (teh-DES'-kee) is 41. Actor Jason Antoon is 40. Actor Eric Dane is 39. Singer Nick Lachey (98 Degrees) is 38. Rhythm-and-blues singer Sisqo (Dru Hill) is 33. Actress Nikki Blonsky is 23.
Thought for Today: "He who seeks rest finds boredom. He who seeks work finds rest." _ Dylan Thomas (1914-1953).
(Above Advance for Use Wednesday, Nov. 9)
Copyright 2011, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.