Today in History
On Nov. 18, 1928, Walt Disney's first sound-synchronized animated cartoon, "Steamboat Willie" starring Mickey Mouse, premiered in New York.
On this date:
In 1883, the United States and Canada adopted a system of Standard Time zones.
In 1886, the 21st president of the United States, Chester A. Arthur, died in New York.
In 1910, British suffragists clashed with police outside Parliament on what became known as "Black Friday."
In 1936, Germany and Italy recognized the Spanish government of Francisco Franco.
In 1942, "The Skin of Our Teeth," Thornton Wilder's Pulitzer Prize-winning allegory about the history of humankind, opened on Broadway.
In 1958, the cargo freighter SS Carl D. Bradley sank during a storm in Lake Michigan, claiming the lives of 33 of the 35 on board.
In 1959, "Ben-Hur," MGM's Biblical-era spectacle starring Charlton Heston and directed by William Wyler, had its world premiere at Loew's State Theatre in New York.
In 1962, Nobel Prize-winning physicist Niels Bohr died in his native Denmark at age 77.
In 1966, U.S. Roman Catholic bishops did away with the rule against eating meat on Fridays outside of Lent.
In 1978, U.S. Rep. Leo J. Ryan, D-Calif., and four others were killed in Jonestown, Guyana, by members of the Peoples Temple; the killings were followed by a night of mass murder and suicide by more than 900 cult members.
In 1987, the congressional Iran-Contra committees issued their final report, saying President Ronald Reagan bore "ultimate responsibility" for wrongdoing by his aides. A fire at London King's Cross railway station claimed 31 lives.
In 1991, Shiite Muslim kidnappers in Lebanon freed Anglican Church envoy Terry Waite and Thomas Sutherland, the American dean of agriculture at the American University of Beirut.
In 1999, 12 people were killed when a bonfire under construction at Texas A-and-M University collapsed.
In 2000, actors Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones were married in an extravagant wedding at The Plaza hotel in New York City.
Ten years ago: The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled, 4-3, that the state constitution guaranteed gay couples the right to marry. President Bush and his wife, Laura, arrived in Britain for a state visit. The U.N. refugee agency began pulling foreign staff out of Afghanistan after the killing of French worker. A judge in Modesto, Calif., ordered Scott Peterson to stand trial for the killing of his wife, Laci, and their unborn son. (Peterson was later convicted and sentenced to death.) Barry Bonds won his record sixth National League MVP award.
Five years ago: Detroit's Big Three automakers pleaded with Congress for a $25 billion lifeline, warning of a national economic catastrophe should they collapse. Belgium-based InBev SA formed the world's largest brewer with its 41 billion-euro ($52 billion) takeover of U.S.-based Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc. Boston's Dustin Pedroia won the American League MVP award, becoming the first second baseman to earn the honor in nearly a half-century.
One year ago: In the deadliest single attack in Israel's offensive against Islamic militants, at least 11 civilians were killed when an Israeli missile ripped through a two-story home in a residential area of Gaza City. Palestinian militants continued to barrage Israel with rockets, firing more than 100.
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.