This day in history

Wednesday, Nov. 20, is the 324th day of 2013. There are 41 days left in the year.

Wednesday’s birthdays: Nobel Prize-winning author Nadine Gordimer is 90. Actress-comedian Kaye Ballard is 88. Actress Estelle Parsons is 86. Comedian Dick Smothers is 75. Singer Norman Greenbaum is 71. Vice President Joe Biden is 71. Actress Veronica Hamel is 70. Broadcast journalist Judy Woodruff is 67. Actor Samuel E. Wright is 67. Singer Joe Walsh is 66. Actor Richard Masur is 65. Opera singer Barbara Hendricks is 65. Actress Bo Derek is 57. Former NFL player Mark Gastineau is 57. Reggae musician Jim Brown (UB40) is 56. Actress Sean Young is 54. Pianist Jim Brickman is 52. Rock musician Todd Nance (Widespread Panic) is 51. Actress Ming-Na is 50. Actor Ned Vaughn is 49. Rapper Mike D (The Beastie Boys) is 48. Actress Callie Thorne is 44. Actress Sabrina Lloyd is 43. Actor Joel McHale is 42. Actress Marisa Ryan is 39. Country singer Dierks Bentley is 38. Actor Joshua Gomez is 38. Actress Laura Harris is 37. Gold medal gymnast Dominique Dawes is 37. Country singer Josh Turner is 36. Actress Nadine Velazquez is 35. Actress Andrea Riseborough is 32. Actor Dan Byrd is 28. Actress Ashley Fink (“Glee”) is 27. Rock musician Jared Followill (Kings of Leon) is 27. Actor Cody Linley is 24.

In 1620, Peregrine White was born aboard the Mayflower in Massachusetts Bay; he was the first child born of English parents in present-day New England.


In 1789, New Jersey became the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights.

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In 1925, Robert F. Kennedy was born in Brookline.

In 1945, out of 24 indicted Nazi officials, 22 went on trial (one in absentia) before an international war crimes tribunal in Nuremberg, Germany.

In 1947, Britain’s future queen, Princess Elizabeth, married Philip Mountbatten, Duke of Edinburgh, at Westminster Abbey.

In 1959, the United Nations issued its Declaration of the Rights of the Child.


In 1962, President Kennedy held a news conference in which he announced the end of the naval quarantine of Cuba imposed during the missile crisis, and the signing of an executive order prohibiting discrimination in federal housing facilities.

In 1969, the Nixon administration announced a halt to residential use of the pesticide DDT as part of a total phaseout. A group of American Indian activists began a 19-month occupation of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay.

In 1975, after nearly four decades of absolute rule, Spain’s General Francisco Franco died, two weeks before his 83d birthday.

In 1982, the University of California used five laterals to score a disputed winning touchdown on the last play of a game against Stanford; the final score was 25-20.

In 1992, fire seriously damaged Windsor Castle in England.


In 2000, lawyers for Al Gore and George W. Bush battled before the Florida Supreme Court over whether the presidential election recount should be allowed to continue.

In 2003, Michael Jackson was booked on suspicion of child molestation in Santa Barbara, Calif. (He was later acquitted at trial.) Record producer Phil Spector was charged with murder in the shooting death of actress Lana Clarkson, at his home in Alhambra, Calif., in February 2003. (His first trial ended with a hung jury in 2007; he was convicted of second-degree murder in 2009 and sentenced to 19 years to life in prison.)