Today in History

November 21
1620   Leaders of the Mayflower expedition frame the “Mayflower Compact,” designed to bolster unity among the settlers.
1783   Jean de Rozier and the Marquis d’Arlandes make the first free-flight ascent in a balloon to over 500 feet in Paris.
1789   North Carolina ratifies the Constitution, becoming the 12th state to do it.
1855   Franklin Colman, a pro-slavery Missourian, guns down Charles Dow, a Free Stater from Ohio, near Lawrence, Kansas.
1864   From Georgia, Confederate General John B. Hood launches the Franklin-Nashville Campaign into Tennessee.
1904   Motorized omnibuses replace horse-drawn cars in Paris.
1906   In San Juan, President Theodore Roosevelt pledges citizenship for Puerto Rican people.
1907   The Cunard liner Mauritania sets a new speed record for steamship travel; 624 miles in a one day run.

Sailors on board Brazil’s most powerful military units, including the brand-new warships Minas Geraes, São Paulo, and Bahia, violently rebel in what comes to be known as the Revolta da Chibata (Revolt of the Lash). The rebellion is the direct result of the use of whips (“lashes”) by white naval officers when punishing Afro-Brazilian and mulatto enlisted sailors. [From MHQ—The Quarterly Journal of Military History]

1911   Suffragettes storm Parliament in London. All are arrested and all choose prison terms.
1917   German ace Rudolf von Eschwege is killed over Macedonia when he attacks a booby-trapped observation balloon packed with explosives.
1918   The last German troops leave Alsace-Lorraine, France.
1927   Police turn machine guns on striking Colorado mine workers, killing five and wounding 20.
1934   A New York court rules Gloria Vanderbilt unfit for custody of her daughter.
1934   Cole Porter’s musical Anything Goes premieres at New York’s Alvin Theatre.
1949   The United Nations grants Libya its independence by 1952.
1967   President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the air quality act, allotting $428 million for the fight against pollution.
1970   Operation Ivory Coast begins as a joint U.S. Air Force and Army team raids the Son Tay POW camp in an attempt to free American prisoners of war thought to be held there. [From MHQ—The Quarterly Journal of Military History]
1985   US Navy intelligence analyst Jonathan Pollard is arrested for spying and passing classified information to Israel; he received a life sentence on Nov. 1, 1987.
1986   The Justice Department begins an inquiry in the National Security Council into what will become known as the Iran-Contra scandal.
1995   The Dayton Peace Agreement is initialed at Wright Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio; the agreement, formally ratified in Paris on Dec. 14, ends the three-and-a-half year war between Bosnia and Herzegovina.
2006   Anti-Syrian Lebanese Minister and MP Pierre Gemayel is assassinated in Beirut.
Born on November 21
1694   Voltaire (Francois-Marie Arouet), French philosopher, historian, poet, dramatist and novelist.
1898   Rene Magritte, surrealist painter (Golconda).
1904   Coleman Hawkins, jazz saxophonist.
1908   Elizabeth G. Speare, writer of historical novels for children.
1920   Stan “The Man” Musial, Hall of Fame baseball player for the St. Louis Cardinals.
1929   Marilyn French, novelist and critic (The Women’s Room).
1936   Victor Chang, Chinese Australian cardiac surgeon who pioneered the development of an artificial heart valve.
1944   Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, US Senate Majority Whip (2007 – 2015).
1944   Earl “The Pearl” Monroe, pro basketball player known for his flamboyant playing style.
1945   Goldie Hawn, actress, director, producer; gained public attention as part of Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In TV series in the 1960s; won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for Cactus Flower (1969).
1948   George Zimmer, businessman; founded Men’s Wearhouse.
1966   Troy Aikman, pro football quarterback; led the Dallas Cowboys to three Super Bowl victories; member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the College Football Hall of Fame.

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