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Moments In Time




 

 

On Sept. 21, 1780, American General Benedict Arnold commits treason when he meets with British Major John Andre to discuss handing over West Point to the British. In return, Arnold was promised a large sum of money and a high position in the British army.

• On Sept. 22, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln issues a preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, which sets a date for the freedom of more than 3 million black slaves in the United States and recasts the Civil War as a fight against slavery.

• On Sept. 23, 1944, President Franklin D. Roosevelt defends the honor of his small dog, Fala, who had recently been the subject of a political attack. Critics had circulated a story claiming that Roosevelt had accidentally left Fala behind while visiting the Aleutian Islands, and that the president sent a Navy destroyer, at a taxpayer expense of up to $20 million, to go back and pick up the dog.

• On Sept. 26, 1957, “West Side Story,” composed by Leonard Bernstein, opens on Broadway. The play was a reinterpretation of William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” transposed onto New York’s West Side. It tells the tale of a love affair between Tony, who is Polish American, and Maria, a Puerto Rican, set against an urban background of interracial warfare.

• On Sept. 25, 1978, a Pacific Southwest Airlines jet collides in mid-air with a small Cessna over San Diego, killing 153 people. The fuel in the jet burst into a massive fireball upon impact, and a witness on the ground reported that she saw her “apples and oranges bake on the trees.”

• On Sept. 27, 1989, actress Zsa Zsa Gabor storms out of a courtroom in Beverly Hills, Calif., where she stood accused of slapping Officer Paul Kramer during a traffic stop and having an open container and expired license. Gabor violated a court-imposed gag order by calling a prosecution witness “a little punk with a hairdo like a girl.”

(c) 2009 King Features Synd.

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