Today in History

Today is Monday, Nov. 21, the 326th day of 2016. There are 40 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight:

On Nov. 21, 1922, Rebecca L. Felton, a Georgia Democrat, was sworn in as the first woman to serve in the U.S. Senate; her term, the result of an interim appointment, ended the following day as Walter F. George, the winner of a special election, took office.

On this date:

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

In 1864, a letter was signed by President Abraham Lincoln expressing condolences to Lydia Bixby, a widow in Boston whose five sons supposedly died while fighting in the Civil War. (As it turned out, only two of Mrs. Bixby’s sons had been killed in battle.)

In 1942, the Alaska Highway, also known as the Alcan Highway, was formally opened at Soldier’s Summit in the Yukon Territory.

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 18½-minute gap in one of the White House tape recordings related to Watergate.

In 1980, 87 people died in a fire at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. An estimated 83 million TV viewers tuned in to the CBS prime-time soap opera “Dallas” to find out “who shot J.R.” (The shooter turned out to be J.R. Ewing’s sister-in-law, Kristin Shepard.)

One year ago: Belgian authorities closed down Brussels’ subway system and flooded the streets with armed police and soldiers in response to what they said was a threat of Paris-style attacks.

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