Today in History – September 2

1666 – The Great Fire of London broke out and burned for three days.  It destroyed 10,000 buildings, including Old St Paul’s Cathedral.

1789 – The United States Department of the Treasury was founded.

1792 – During what became known as the September Massacres of the French Revolution, rampaging mobs slaughtered three Roman Catholic bishops, more than two hundred priests, and prisoners believed to be royalist sympathizers.

1807 – Napoleonic Wars: The British Royal Navy bombarded Copenhagen with fire bombs and phosphorus rockets to prevent Denmark from surrendering its fleet to Napoleon.

1862 – American Civil War: United States President Abraham Lincoln reluctantly restored Union General George B. McClellan to full command after General John Pope’s disastrous defeat at the Second Battle of Bull Run.

1864 – American Civil War: Union forces entered Atlanta, a day after the Confederate defenders fled the city, ending the Atlanta Campaign.

1885 – Rock Springs massacre: In Rock Springs, Wyoming, 150 white miners, who were struggling to unionize so they could strike for better wages and work conditions, attacked their Chinese fellow workers killing 28, wounding 15 and forcing several hundred more out of town.

1901 – Vice President of the United States Theodore Roosevelt uttered the famous phrase, “Speak softly and carry a big stick” at the Minnesota State Fair.

1912 – Arthur Rose Eldred was awarded the first Eagle Scout award of the Boy Scouts of America.

1931 – The radio show “15 Minutes with Bing Crosby” debuted on CBS.

1935 – The Labor Day Hurricane, the most intense hurricane to strike the United States, made landfall at Long Key, Florida, killing at least 400.

1939 – World War II: Following the start of the invasion of Poland the previous day, the Free City of Danzig (now Gdańsk, Poland) was annexed by Nazi Germany.

1945 – World War II: The Japanese Instrument of Surrender was signed by Japan and the major warring powers aboard the battleship USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay.

1958 – A USAF RC-130 was shot down by fighters over Armenia when it strayed into Soviet airspace while conducting a sigint mission. All crew members are killed.

1963 – CBS Evening News became U.S. network television’s first half-hour weeknight news broadcast, when the show was lengthened from 15 to 30 minutes.

1965 – The Beatles received a gold record for the song “Help!”

1965 – The Rolling Stones appeared on the British TV show “Ready Steady Go!” Mick Jagger and Andrew Loog Oldham performed a parody of Sonny & Cher’s “I Got You Babe.”

1970 – NASA announced the cancellation of two Apollo missions to the Moon, Apollo 15 (the designation is re-used by a later mission), and Apollo 19.

1970 – An ad was run in “Melody Maker” by Genesis looking for musicians who were “determined to strive beyond existing stagnant music forms.” Phil Collins answered the ad and eventually joined the group.

1978 – George Harrison married Olivia Trinidad Arias. She was a secretary at his Dark Horse record company.

1984 – Seven people were shot and killed and 12 wounded in the Milperra massacre, a shootout between the rival motorcycle gangs Bandidos and Comancheros in Sydney, Australia.

1986 – Debbie Gibson began recording the album “Out of the Blue.” She was 16 years old and still in school at the time.

1987 – In Moscow, the trial began for 19-year-old pilot Mathias Rust, who flew his Cessna airplane into Red Square in May.

1995 – In Cleveland, OH, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum officially opened.

2008 – Google launched its Google Chrome web browser.

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