Events On My Birthday

Significant Events on November 26
Year Event
399 St Siricius ended his reign as Catholic Pope.
579 Pelagius II began his reign as Catholic Pope.
1527 Pope Clemens VII signed a treaty with emperor Karel I.
1580 French Huguenots and Roman Catholics signed a peace treaty.
1648 Pope Innocent X condemned the Peace of Westfalen.
1688 French King Louis XIV declared war on The Netherlands.
1688 King James II escaped back to London.
1703 A two-day "Great Storm" raged throughout southern England, flooding the Thames and Severn rivers. More than 8,000 people were killed.
1703 Bristol England was ravaged by a hurricane. The Royal Navy lost 15 warships.
1716 The first lion exhibited in America was seen in Boston, Massachusetts.
1741 French and Beiers armies occupied Prague.
1778 Captain James Cook discovered Maui - in what was then called the Sandwich Islands [now Hawaii].
1789 President George Washington proclaimed this date (a Thursday) to be the first national Thanksgiving Day holiday.  National Thanksgiving days were periodically proclaimed by presidents, until 1863, when Abraham Lincoln inaugurated the practice of annually setting the last Thursday in November aside for Thanksgiving Day (subsequently changed to the fourth Thursday in November by FDR).
1793 The Republican calendar replaced the Gregorian calendar in France.
1825 The first college fraternity in the U.S., Kappa Alpha, was formed at Union College in Schenectady, New York.
1832 A horse-drawn streetcar was used for the first time to carry passengers in the United States.  It was introduced in New York on Fourth Avenue between Prince Street and 14th Street.  The fare was 0.12.
1855 The Wakarusa War in Kansas - During the Wakarusa War, a force of some 1,500 Border Ruffians camped on the Wakarusa River advance on Lawrence, Kansas, but retreated after they found the town to be heavily defended by Free State forces.  Lawrence, Kansas, a station on the Underground Railroad, was a center of pre-Civil War violence over the issue of slavery.  Trouble in territorial Kansas began with the signing of the Kansas-Nebraska Act by President Franklin Pierce in 1854.  The act stipulated that settlers in the newly created territories of Nebraska and Kansas would decide by popular vote whether their territory would be free or slave.  In early 1855, Kansas's first election proved a violent affair as over 5,000 Border Ruffians invaded the territory from western Missouri and forced the election of a pro-slavery legislature.  To prevent further bloodshed, Andrew H. Reeder, appointed territorial governor by President Pierce, reluctantly approved the election.  A few months later, the Kansas Free State forces were formed, armed by supporters in the North and featuring the leadership of militant abolitionist John Brown.  In May of 1856, Border Ruffians and other pro-slavery supporters returned to the Wakarusa River area, and succeeded in sacking the town of Lawrence.  In retaliation, a small Free State force under John Brown massacred five pro-slavery Kansans along the Pottawatomie Creek.  Over the next four years, raids, skirmishes, and massacres continued in "Bleeding Kansas," as it was popularly known.  But in 1861, the irrepressible differences in the territory were swallowed up by the full-scale outbreak of the American Civil War.
1861 A convention was held, in Wheeling, to adopt a constitution for the new state of West Virginia, created as a result of disputes with Virginia over slavery.
1862 Alice in Wonderland Manuscript Sent as Christmas Present - On this day in 1862, Oxford mathematician Charles Lutwidge Dawson sent a handwritten manuscript called Alice's Adventures Under Ground to 10-year-old Alice Liddell.  The 30-year-old Dawson, better known by his nom de plume Lewis Carroll, made up the story one day on a picnic with young Alice and her two sisters, the children of one of Dawson's colleagues.  Dawson, the son of a country parson, had been brilliant at both mathematics and wordplay since childhood, when he enjoyed making up games.  However, he suffered from a severe stammer, except when he spoke with children.  He had many young friends who enjoyed his fantastic stories.  The Liddell children thought his tale of a girl who falls down a rabbit hole was one of his best efforts, and Alice insisted he write it down.  During a visit to the Liddells, English novelist Henry Kingsley happened to notice the manuscript.  After reading it, he suggested to Mrs. Liddell that it be published.  Dawson published the book at his own expense, under the name Lewis Carroll, in 1865.  The story was one of the earliest children's books written simply to amuse children, not to teach them.  The book's sequel, Through the Looking Glass, was published in 1871.  Dawson's other works, including a poetry collection called Phantasmagoria and Other Poems, and another children's book, Sylvia and Bruno, did not gain the same enduring popularity as the Alice books.  Dawson died in 1898.
1867 The refrigerated railroad car was patented by J. B. Sutherland of Detroit, Michigan.
1868 First baseball game played in an enclosed field in San Francisco, at 25th & Folsom.
1872 The Great Diamond Hoax Exposed - The Great Diamond Hoax, one of the most notorious mining swindles of the time, was exposed with an article in the San Francisco Evening Bulletin.  Fraudulent gold and silver mines were common in the years following the California Gold Rush of 1849.  Swindlers fooled many eager greenhorns by "salting" worthless mines with particles of gold dust to make them appear mineral-rich.  However, few con men were as daring as Kentucky cousins Philip Arnold and John Slack, who convinced San Francisco capitalists to invest in a worthless mine in the northwestern corner of Colorado.  Arnold and Slack played their con perfectly.  They arrived in San Francisco in 1872 and tried to deposit a bag of uncut diamonds at a bank.  When questioned, the two men quickly disappeared, acting as if they were reluctant to talk about their discovery.  Intrigued, a bank director named William Ralston tracked down the men.  Assuming he was dealing with unsophisticated country bumpkins, he set out to take control of the diamond mine.  The two cousins agreed to take a blindfolded mining expert to the site; the expert returned to report that the mine was indeed rich with diamonds and rubies.  Joining forces with a number of other prominent San Francisco financiers, Ralston formed the New York Mining and Commercial Company, capitalized at $10 million(US), and began selling stock to eager investors.  As a show of good faith, Arnold and Slack received about $600,000--small change in comparison to the supposed value of the diamond mine.  Convinced that the American West must have many other major deposits of diamonds, at least 25 other diamond exploration companies formed in the subsequent months.  Clarence King, the then-little-known young leader of a geographical survey of the 40th parallel, finally exposed the cousins' diamond mine as a hoax.  A brilliant geologist and mining engineer, King was suspicious of the mine from the start.  He correctly deduced the location of the supposed mine, raced off to investigate, and soon realized that the swindlers had salted the mine.  Some of the gems he found even showed jewelers' cut marks.  Back in San Francisco, King exposed the fraud in the newspapers and the Great Diamond Hoax collapsed.  Ralston returned $80,000 to each of his investors, but he was never able to recover the $600,000 given to the two cousins.  Arnold lived out the few remaining years of his life in luxury in Kentucky before dying of pneumonia in 1878.  Slack apparently squandered his share of the money, for he was last reported working as a coffin maker in New Mexico.  King's role in exposing the fraud brought him national recognition and he became the first director of the United States Geological Survey (USGS).
1885 The first photograph of a meteor was taken.
1896 A. A. Stagg of the University of Chicago created the football huddle.
1896 The University of Chicago defeated the University of Michigan, 7-6, at the Chicago Coliseum in the first major college football game played indoors.
1913 Russian kingdom forbids Polish congregation of speakers.
1914 Battleship HMS Bulwark exploded at Sheerness Harbor England, killing 788.
1916 Greece declared war on Germany.
1918 The Kingdom of Montenegro joined The Kingdom of Serbia. [There's a street in Ulcinj (probably in most other cities in Montenegro as well) that is named for my birthday.]
1922 King Tut's Tomb Entered - On November 26, 1922, British archaeologists Howard Carter and Lord Carnarvon became the first souls to enter King Tutankhamen's tomb in over three thousand years.  Carter had discovered the entrance to the tomb of the teenage Pharaoh three weeks before, hidden in debris near the excavated tomb of King Ramses VI. Carter and Carnarvon found the sealed chambers to be miraculously intact, and inside was a collection of several thousand objects, including a gold coffin containing the mummy of the boy-king Tutankhamen.  The modern monetary value of such treasures exceeded all estimates.
1924 Mongolian People's Republic was proclaimed.
1927 Ford Model A Introduced - On this day, the Ford Motor Company announced the introduction of the Model A, the first new Ford to enter the market since the Model T was first introduced in 1908.  The hugely successful Model T revolutionized the automobile industry, and over fifteen million copies of the "Tin Lizzy" were sold in its nineteen years of production.  But by 1927, the popularity of the outdated Model T was rapidly waning. Improved, but basically unchanged for its two-decade reign, it was losing ground to the more stylish and powerful motor cars offered by Ford's competitors.  In May of 1927, Ford plants across the country closed, as the company began an intensive development of the more refined and modern Model A.  The vastly improved Model A had elegant Lincoln-like styling on a smaller scale, and used a capable 200.5-cubic-inch 4-cylinder engine that produced 40 horsepower.  With prices starting at $460(US), nearly five million Model As, in several body styles and a variety of colors, rolled onto America's highways until production ended in early 1932.
1940 Germany began walling off the Jewish Ghetto in Warsaw, sealing in its 500,000 inhabitants.
1940 The Belgian Congo declared war on Italy in World War II.
1941 Bobby Riggs, the national amateur singles tennis champion, turned pro.
1941 Japanese Fleet Sails for Pearl Harbor - On this day, a Japanese fleet of six aircraft carriers, commanded by Vice Admiral Chuichi Nagumo, left Hitokapu Bay under strict radio silence.  The surprise attack was Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto's idea.  The Commander-in-Chief of the Japanese Combined Fleet had been stewing over the idea since November 1940, two months after Japan signed the Tripartite Pact that aligned them with Germany and Italy.  Yamamoto's Pearl Harbor idea was inspired by two things: a prophetic book, and a historic attack.  The book was The Great Pacific War, written in 1925 by Hector Bywater, a British naval authority.  It was a realistic account of a clash between the United States and Japan that begins with the Japanese destruction of the U.S. fleet and proceeds to the Japanese attacks on Guam and the Philippines.  To Yamamoto, the book's plot almost seemed like a blueprint for war.  And when the Royal Air Force attacked and successfully debilitated the Italian fleet at Taranto on November 11, 1940, Yamamoto was convinced that Bywater's fiction could become reality.  He started making plans at once.  Yamamoto, who studied English at Harvard University, did not underestimate the Americans.  He said that "if hostilities break out between Japan and the United States, it would not be enough that we take Guam and the Philippines . . . we would have to march into Washington and dictate the terms of peace in the White House."  He understood this would be virtually impossible, but also believed that waiting for the Americans to strike first would be playing into U.S. strengths.  Planning the attack on Pearl Harbor and organizing the First Air Fleet took up much of 1941.  When the fleet finally sailed on November 26, the mood was tense.  The director of the First Fleet, Vice Admiral Nagumo, not only lacked experience with naval aviation but openly opposed the attack.  Yamamoto sat in his flagship headquarters in Japanese waters, anxiously awaiting the results of his Pearl Harbor brainchild.
1941 FDR Establishes Modern Thanksgiving Holiday - For the first time in American history, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a bill establishing the fourth Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day.  The tradition of celebrating the holiday on Thursday dated back to the early history of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies, when post-harvest holidays were celebrated on the weekday regularly set aside as "Lecture Day," a mid-week church meeting where topical sermons were presented.  Thanksgiving had become an annual custom throughout New England by the mid-seventeenth-century, and in 1777, the Continental Congress declared the first national American thanksgiving following the Patriot victory at Saratoga--to be celebrated in December.  In 1789, President George Washington became the first president to proclaim the Thanksgiving holiday, when, at the request of Congress, he proclaimed November 26, a Thursday, as a day of national thanksgiving for the U.S. Constitution.  However, it was not until 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving to fall on the last Thursday of November, that the traditional holiday day was celebrated nationally.  Lincoln's precedent was followed annually by every subsequent president--until 1939.  In that year, Franklin D. Roosevelt departed from tradition by declaring November 23, the fourth Thursday that year, as Thanksgiving Day.  Considerable controversy surrounded this deviation from tradition, and some Americans refused to honor Roosevelt's declaration.  For the next two years, Roosevelt repeated the unpopular proclamation.  Then on November 26, 1941, he signed a bill into law making the fourth Thursday in November the national holiday of Thanksgiving Day forever.
1941 Lebanon gained independence from France.
1942 The motion picture "Casablanca", starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, had its world premiere at the Hollywood Theater in New York.
1942 Anti-fascist Council for National Liberation (AVNOJ) was formed.
1944 The port of Antwerp was reopened and the Germans began attacking it with their new V-1 and V-2 rockets.
1944 Himmler ordered the destruction of Auschwitz and Birkenau crematoriums.
1945 The program, "Bride and Groom", debuted on the NBC Blue network.  It is estimated that more than 1,000 newly-wed couples were interviewed on the program before it left the airwaves in 1950.
1949 India's Constituent Assembly passed the country's constitution; it came into force two months later.
1950 China entered the Korean conflict, launching a counter-offensive against soldiers from the United Nations, the United States, and South Korea.
1952 The first modern 3-D movie "Bwana Devil," premiered in Hollywood.
1956 "The Price Is Right" debuted on NBC.
1956 USSR single sculls winner Vyacheslav Ivanov won the Olympic gold medal.  In his excitement he jumped for joy, and dropped his medal - which promptly sank.
1956 Doug Fowler was born. ;-)
1961 Pro Baseball Rules Committee voted 8-1 against legalizing the spitball.
1962 The first recording session of a group by the name of "The Beatles".
1963 Explorer 18 was launched.
1965 France Becomes The World's Third Space Power - At Hammaguira, the launch facility in the Sahara Desert of southern Algeria, France successfully launched the Diamant-A rocket into space, becoming the world's third space power after the Soviet Union and the United States.  The Diamant-A and its technological payload, A-1, were constructed by the National Center for the Study of Space (CNES), the French equivalent of NASA established by French President Charles de Gaulle in December of 1961.  Ten days after the successful launch of the Diamant rocket, French scientists, working in cooperation with NASA engineers in California, successfully launched the first French satellite, FR-1, into orbit around the earth aboard a U.S. Scout rocket.
1966 French President Charles De Gaulle opened the world's first tidal power station at the Rance estuary in Brittany.
1967 The birth of the People's Republic of South Yemen was proclaimed in Aden by the National Liberation Front.
1968 In a performance filmed by the BBC, the rock group, Cream, gave their farewell concert before a capacity crowd at Royal Albert Hall in London.
1969 The Lottery for Selective Service Draftees bill was signed into law by President Nixon.
1970 Pope Paul VI was attacked with a dagger by a Bolivian artist dressed as a priest at Manila airport, but was unhurt.
1973 President Nixon's personal secretary, Rose Mary Woods, told a federal court that she had accidentally caused an 18 1/2-minute gap in a key Watergate tape.
1974 Japanese Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka resigned following allegations of irregularities in his private business affairs.
1974 Approximately 140 died when a suspension bridge collapsed in Nepal.
1975 France performed a nuclear test at Fangataufa Island.
1975 The U.S. performed a nuclear test at a Nevada test site.
1975 "Squeaky" Fromme Found Guilty - A federal jury in Sacramento, California, found Lynette Alice Fromme, also known as "Squeaky" Fromme, guilty of attempting to assassinate President Gerald R. Ford.  On September 5, a Secret Service agent wrested a pistol from Fromme, who brandished the weapon during a public appearance of President Ford in Sacramento.  In the ensuing trial, Fromme, a follower of incarcerated cult leader Charles Manson, pleaded not guilty to the attempted assassination charge, arguing that although her gun contained bullets, it had not been cocked, and therefore she had not intended to shoot the president.  In December of 1987, Fromme, who remains a dedicated disciple of Charles Manson, escaped from prison but was recaptured less than two days later.
1978 The first lesbian theme TV-movie, "Question of Love", debuted.
1979 A Pakistan International Airlines Boeing 707 crashed in Jeddah; all 156 passengers and crew were killed.
1979 The International Olympic Committee voted to re-admit China after a 21-year absence.
1980 The space shuttle Columbia was mated to its solid rocket boosters (SRBs) and external fuel tank in the Vehicle Assembly Building at Cape Canaveral in preparation for its ill-fated flight.
1983 Heathrow Airport was robbed of 6,800 gold bars worth $38.7 million(US).
1984 William Schroeder became the second recipient of an artificial heart, undergoing surgery at Louisville's Humana Hospital.
1985 France performed a nuclear test at Muruora Island.
1985 Random House bought Richard Nixon's memoirs for $3 million(US).
1987 Rebel guerrillas massacred 16 whites at a mission near Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
1988 Pioneer 6 made its closest approach to Earth since 1965 launch (1.87 M km).
1988 Yassar Arafat Denied Entry into The United States - Yasser Arafat, founder of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), was denied a request for a visa so that he could travel to New York City and address a United Nations session.  American authorities cited his support of terrorism against Israel and the United States as the motive for the refusal.  However, during the next few years, to the surprise of American and Israeli authorities, Arafat, who began his career as an uncompromising Palestinian resistance leader, began seeking diplomatic solutions to his quest for a Palestinian homeland.  Arafat persuaded the PLO to formally acknowledge the right of Israel to co-exist with the independent state of Palestine, and in 1993 signed the historic Israel-Palestinian Declaration of Principles along with Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin.  In 1994, Arafat and Rabin signed a major peace agreement granting Palestine limited self-government in former territories occupied by Israel.  In 1995, Arafat was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, along with Rabin and Israeli foreign minister Shimon Peres, for their work toward peace in Israel and the occupied territories.
1989 President Alfredo Cristiani announced the suspension of "all relations" with Nicaragua, accusing the left-wing government there of fanning El Salvador's civil war.
1989 Opposition candidate Luis Alberto Lacalle of the Blanco (National) Party was elected president in Uruguay's first free elections since 1971.
1989 In a national referendum, voters decided that Hungary's next president would be chosen by parliament, following free elections.
1990 Mikhail Gorbachev told Iraq to get out of Kuwait.
1990 Singapore's Lee Kuan Yew resigned, ending his reign as the longest-serving Prime Minister.
1991 Condoms were handed out to thousands of high school students in New York City.
1993 Belgium's first general strike in almost half a century brought industry and transport to a standstill and forced the government to agree to talks with the unions.
1995 Ireland voted (50.3%) to end a 58-year ban on divorce.
2006 Doug Fowler turned 50. :(