Today is Wednesday, Nov. 16, the 320th day of 2011. There are 45 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Nov. 16, 1961, House Speaker Samuel T. Rayburn, 79, died at his home in Bonham, Texas, having served as speaker since 1940 except for two terms as minority leader of the Democrats.
On this date:
In 1776, British troops captured Fort Washington in New York during the American Revolution.
In 1885, Canadian rebel leader Louis Riel was executed for high treason.
In 1907, Oklahoma became the 46th state of the union.
In 1917, Georges Clemenceau again became prime minister of France.
In 1933, the United States and the Soviet Union established diplomatic relations.
In 1959, the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical "The Sound of Music" opened on Broadway.
In 1960, Academy Award-winning actor Clark Gable died in Los Angeles at age 59.
In 1966, Dr. Samuel H. Sheppard was acquitted in his second trial of murdering his pregnant wife, Marilyn, in 1954.
In 1973, Skylab 4, carrying a crew of three astronauts, was launched from Cape Canaveral on an 84-day mission.
In 1981, the Senate confirmed Dr. C. Everett Koop to be surgeon general. Oscar-winning actor William Holden, 63, was found dead in his Santa Monica, Calif., apartment. On the ABC-TV soap opera "General Hospital," Laura Webber (played by Genie Francis) married Luke Spencer (played by Anthony Geary).
Ten years ago: Investigators found a letter addressed to Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., containing anthrax; it was the second letter bearing the deadly germ known to have been sent to Capitol Hill. A University of Georgia football fan rushing to catch his flight ran past guards and through a passenger exit at Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport, forcing officials to halt flights; the man, Michael Lasseter, was later sentenced to five weekends or ten days in jail and 500 hours of community service.
Five years ago: Democrats embraced Nancy Pelosi as the first woman House speaker in history, but then selected Steny Hoyer as majority leader against her wishes. African, Arab, European and U.N. leaders agreed in principle to a joint African Union-United Nations peacekeeping force for Sudan's Darfur region. Gunmen abducted a private security team of four Americans and an Austrian in southern Iraq. (All five were later slain.) Minnesota Twins' ace Johan Santana won the AL Cy Young Award. Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman died in San Francisco at age 94.
One year ago: President Barack Obama presented the Medal of Honor to Army Staff Sgt. Salvatore Giunta, the first living service member from the Afghanistan and Iraq wars to receive the nation's top military award. U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel was convicted on 11 of 13 charges related to financial misconduct, prompting fellow lawmakers to censure the 80-year-old New York Democrat. The engagement of Prince William and Kate Middleton was announced in London. Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen, 64, was shot to death in her Mercedes on Sunset Boulevard. (Police believe the killer was Harold Martin Smith, who took his own life when confronted by officers.) Roy Halladay of the Philadelphia Phillies unanimously won the NL Cy Young Award.
Today's Birthdays: Actor Clu Gulager is 83. Blues musician Hubert Sumlin is 80. Journalist Elizabeth Drew is 76. Blues musician W.C. Clark is 72. Actress Joanna Pettet is 69. Actor Steve Railsback is 66. Actor David Leisure is 61. Actor Miguel Sandoval is 60. Actress Marg Helgenberger is 53. Rock musician Mani is 49. Country singer-musician Keith Burns (Trick Pony) is 48. Tennis player Zina Garrison is 48. MLB All-Star pitcher Dwight Gooden is 47. Jazz singer Diana Krall is 47. Actor Harry Lennix is 47. Rock musician Dave Kushner (Velvet Revolver) is 45. Actress Lisa Bonet (boh-NAY') is 44. Actress Tammy Lauren is 43. Rhythm-and-blues singer Bryan Abrams (Color Me Badd) is 42. Actress Martha Plimpton is 41. Actor Michael Irby is 39. Actress Missi Pyle is 39. Olympic gold medal figure skater Oksana Baiul (ahk-SAH'-nah by-OOL') is 34. Actress Maggie Gyllenhaal (JIHL'-ehn-hahl) is 34. Pop singer Trevor Penick is 32. NBA player Amare Stoudemire is 29. Actress Kimberly J. Brown is 27. Actor Noah Gray-Cabey ("Heroes") is 16.
Thought for Today: "An American who can make money, invoke God, and be no better than his neighbor, has nothing to fear but truth itself." _ Marya Mannes, American critic (1904-1990).
(Above Advance for Use Wednesday, Nov. 16)
Copyright 2011, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.