On Sept. 13, 1788, the Congress of the Confederation authorized the first national election, and declared New York City the temporary national capital.
On this date:
In 1759, during the final French and Indian War, the British defeated the French on the Plains of Abraham overlooking Quebec City.
In 1803, Commodore John Barry, considered by many the father of the American Navy, died in Philadelphia.
In 1912, a state funeral was held in Japan for Emperor Meiji.
In 1948, Republican Margaret Chase Smith of Maine was elected to the U.S. Senate; she became the first woman to serve in both houses of Congress.
In 1959, Elvis Presley first met his future wife, 14-year-old Priscilla Beaulieu, while stationed in West Germany with the U.S. Army. (They married in 1967, but divorced in 1973.)
In 1962, Mississippi Gov. Ross Barnett rejected the U.S. Supreme Court's order for the University of Mississippi to admit James Meredith, a black student, declaring in a televised address, "We will not drink from the cup of genocide."
In 1970, the first New York City Marathon was held; winner Gary Muhrcke finished the 26.2-mile run, which took place entirely inside Central Park, in 2:31:38.
In 1971, a four-day inmates' rebellion at the Attica Correctional Facility in western New York ended as police and guards stormed the prison; the ordeal and final assault claimed the lives of 32 inmates and 11 employees.
In 1989, Fay Vincent was elected commissioner of Major League Baseball, succeeding the late A. Bartlett Giamatti.
In 1993, at the White House, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO chairman Yasser Arafat shook hands after signing an accord granting limited Palestinian autonomy. "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" premiered on NBC.
In 1996, rapper Tupac Shakur died at a Las Vegas hospital six days after he was wounded in a drive-by shooting; he was 25.
In 1998, former Alabama Gov. George C. Wallace died in Montgomery at age 79.
Ten years ago: Angry mourners swarmed Fallujah, Iraq, a day after eight Iraqi police were killed in a friendly fire incident involving U.S. troops; the U.S. military apologized for the deaths. The California Democratic Party voted to endorse Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante while continuing to support Gov. Gray Davis in the October 7 recall election. Indiana Gov. Frank O'Bannon died at age 73. In Las Vegas, Sugar Shane Mosley beat Oscar De La Hoya, winning a close but unanimous decision to take the WBC and WBA 154-pound titles.
Five years ago: Rescue crews ventured out to pluck people from their homes in an all-out search for thousands of Texans who had stubbornly stayed behind overnight to face Hurricane Ike. After wild conjecture over who would play Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on "Saturday Night Live," writer-performer Tina Fey returned to her old show for an opening sketch featuring her and Fey's former "Weekend Update" co-host Amy Poehler as Sen. Hillary Clinton.
One year ago: Chanting "death to America," hundreds of protesters angered by an anti-Islam film stormed the U.S. Embassy compound in Yemen's capital and burned the American flag. New York City's Board of Health passed a ban on the sale of big sodas and other sugary drinks, limiting the size sold at restaurants, concession stands and other eateries to 16 ounces.
More Life Headlines
10 ways to appreciate your life Dress up like the Donald this year Are you ready for Vader in a bowl? Should Jordan example rule if kids are ill? ‘CSI’ takes a bow Once a surprise hit, CBS staple ends 15-season run tonight Today in history Enjoy a lunar trifecta tonight Everyday errands are windows into European culture
Our to-do list full of ideas for your weekend
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.