This Day in History – September 19th

September 19th
The first passenger in a hot air balloon.

Today is Wednesday, Sept. 19, the 262nd day of 2018. There are 103 days left in the year and 97 days until Christmas.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On September 19th, 1881, the 20th president of the United States, James A. Garfield, died 2½ months after being shot by Charles Guiteau; Chester Alan Arthur became president.

On this date:

In 1777, the first Battle of Saratoga was fought during the Revolutionary War; although British forces succeeded in driving out the American troops, the Americans prevailed in a second battle the following month.

In 1783, Jacques Etienne Montgolfier (zhahk ayt-YEHN’ mohn-gohl-fee-AY’) launched a duck, a sheep and a rooster aboard a hot-air balloon at Versailles (vehr-SY’) in France.

In 1796, President George Washington’s farewell address was published. In it, America’s first chief executive advised, “Observe good faith and justice toward all nations. Cultivate peace and harmony with all.”

In 1945, Nazi radio propagandist William Joyce, known as “Lord Haw-Haw,” was convicted of treason and sentenced to death by a British court.

In 1959, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, in Los Angeles as part of his U.S. tour, reacted angrily upon being told that, for security reasons, he wouldn’t get to visit Disneyland.

In 1982, the smiley emoticon was invented by Carnegie Mellon University professor Scott E. Fahlman, who suggested punctuating humorously intended computer messages with a colon followed by a hyphen and a parenthesis as a horizontal “smiley face.” 🙂

In 1985, the Mexico City area was struck by a devastating earthquake that killed at least 9,500 people.

Thought for Today: “He who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god; he is no part of a state.” — Aristotle, Greek philosopher (384 B.C.-322 B.C.).