Today in History

November 23

1248The city of Seville, France, surrenders to Ferdinand III of Castile after a two-year siege.
1785John Hancock is elected president of the Continental Congress for the second time.
1863Union forces win the Battle of Orchard Knob, Tennessee.
1863The Battle of Chattanooga, one of the most decisive battles of the American Civil War, begins (also in Tennessee).
1903Italian tenor Enrico Caruso makes his American debut in a Metropolitan Opera production of Verdi's Rigoletto.
1904Russo-German talks break down because of Russia's insistence to consult France.
1909The Wright brothers form a million-dollar corporation for the commercial manufacture of their airplanes.
1921President Warren G. Harding signs the Willis Campell Act, better known as the anti-beer bill. It forbids doctors to prescribe beer or liquor for medicinal purposes.
1933President Franklin D. Roosevelt recalls the American ambassador from Havana, Cuba, and urges stability in the island nation.
1934The United States and Great Britain agree on a 5-5-3 naval ratio, with both countries allowed to build five million tons of naval ships while Japan can only build three. Japan will denounce the treaty.
1936The United States abandons the American embassy in Madrid, Spain, which is engulfed by civil war.
1941U.S. troops move into Dutch Guiana to guard the bauxite mines.
1942The film Casablanca premieres in New York City.
1943 U.S. Marines declare the island of Tarawa secure.
1945Wartime meat and butter rationing ends in the United States.
1953North Korea signs 10-year aid pact with Peking.
1968Four men hijack an American plane, with 87 passengers, from Miami to Cuba.
1980In Europe's biggest earthquake since 1915, 3,000 people are killed in Italy.

Born on November 23
1804 Franklin Pierce, hero of the American war with Mexico and 14th president of the United States.
1878 Ernest King, commander-in-chief of the U.S. fleet who designed the United States' winning strategy in World War II.
1887Boris Karloff, film actor most famous for his role as the monster in the movie Frankenstein.
1888Adolph Arthur "Harpo" Marx, American comedian, one of the Marx brothers.
1897Willie "The Lion" Smith, jazz and ragtime pianist.

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