Today in History

September 10, 1813: Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry and a U.S. Navy squadron defeat a British squadron in the Battle of Lake Erie, the most significant naval battle ever fought on the Great Lakes. Perry wrote a famous letter to his regional superior, Gen. (and future President) William Henry Harrison, that day:

Dear General:

We have met the enemy and they are ours. Two ships, two brigs, one schooner and one sloop.

Yours with great respect and esteem,

O.H. Perry

September 12, 1846: Elizabeth Barrett elopes with Robert Browning.

September 13, 1501: Michelangelo begins work on his statue of David.

September 15, 1935: Nazi Germany adopts a new national flag bearing the swastika.

September 15, 1940: The largest battle between Nazi German and British and allied warplanes during World War II raged in the skies over the British Isles, with over 1,500 aircraft involved. The Germans lost and were thus unable to establish air superiority, making an invasion (Operation Sea Lion) very unlikely. The event is now commemorated in the UK as Battle of Britain Day.

September 16, 1966: The new Metropolitan Opera House opens at Lincoln Center in New York City with the world premiere of Samuel Barber’s opera Antony and Cleopatra, starring Leontyne Price.

September 16,

1630: The Massachusetts village of Shawmut changed its name to Boston.

1987: Two dozen countries signed the Montreal Protocol, a treaty designed to save the Earth’s ozone layer by calling on nations to reduce emissions of harmful chemicals by the year 2000!