September 27th: On This Day in History
Today's Highlight in History:
On Sept. 27, 1939, Warsaw, Poland, surrendered after weeks of resistance to invading forces from Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union during World War II.
On this date:
In 1540, Pope Paul III issued a papal bull establishing the Society of Jesus, or Jesuits, as a religious order.
In 1779, John Adams was named by Congress to negotiate the Revolutionary War's peace terms with Britain.
In 1854, the first great disaster involving an Atlantic Ocean passenger vessel occurred when the steamship SS Arctic sank off Newfoundland; of the more than 400 people on board, only 86 survived.
In 1928, the United States said it was recognizing the Nationalist Chinese government.
In 1942, Glenn Miller and his Orchestra performed together for the last time, at the Central Theater in Passaic, N.J., prior to Miller's entry into the Army.
In 1954, "Tonight!" hosted by Steve Allen, made its network debut on NBC-TV.
In 1964, the government publicly released the report of the Warren Commission, which found that Lee Harvey Oswald had acted alone in assassinating President John F. Kennedy.
In 1979, Congress gave final approval to forming the U.S. Department of Education.
In 1985, Hurricane Gloria brushed the Outer Banks of North Carolina as a Category 3 storm; it proceeded to head up the Atlantic Coast toward New England.
In 1994, more than 350 Republican congressional candidates gathered on the steps of the U.S. Capitol to sign the "Contract with America," a 10-point platform they pledged to enact if voters sent a GOP majority to the House.
Ten years ago: In Sydney, Australia, the U.S. Olympic baseball team beat Cuba 4-0 to capture America's first official baseball gold medal. Venus Williams became only the second player to win Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and the Olympics in the same year with her 6-2, 6-4 victory over Elena Dementieva. (The first was Steffi Graf, in 1988.)
Five years ago: In a fiery appearance before Congress, former FEMA director Michael Brown angrily blamed the Louisiana governor, the New Orleans mayor and even the Bush White House that appointed him for the dismal response to Hurricane Katrina; in response, lawmakers alternately lambasted and mocked the former official. New Orleans Police Superintendent Eddie Compass stepped down from his post four weeks after Katrina destroyed the city. Army reservist Lynndie England was sentenced to three years behind bars for her role in the Abu Ghraib prison scandal. (She ended up serving half that time.)
One year ago: German Chancellor Angela Merkel won a second term, along with the center-right majority that had eluded her four years earlier -- nudging Europe's biggest economic power to the right. Pulitzer Prize-winning conservative columnist and former Nixon speechwriter William Safire died at age 79.