On Sept. 21, 1792, the French National Convention voted to abolish the monarchy.
In 1912, magician Harry Houdini first publicly performed his “Water Torture Cell” trick at the Circus Busch in Berlin.
In 1938, a hurricane struck parts of New York and New England, causing widespread damage and claiming some 700 lives.
In 1948, Milton Berle made his debut as permanent host of “The Texaco Star Theater” on NBC-TV.
In 1961, the first Boeing CH-47 Chinook military helicopter made its first hovering flight.
In 1981, the Senate unanimously confirmed the nomination of Sandra Day O’Connor to become the first female justice on the Supreme Court.
In 1982, Amin Gemayel, brother of Lebanon’s assassinated president-elect, Bashir Gemayel, was himself elected president. National Football League players began a 57-day strike, their first regular-season walkout ever.
In 1985, in North Korea and South Korea, family members who had been separated for decades were allowed to visit each other as both countries opened their borders in an unprecedented family-reunion program.
In 1987, NFL players called a strike, mainly over the issue of free agency. (The 24-day walkout prompted football owners to hire replacement players.)
In1989, Hurricane Hugo crashed into Charleston, South Carolina (the storm was blamed for 56 deaths in the Caribbean and 29 in the United States). Twenty-one students in Alton, Texas, died when their school bus, hit by a soft-drink delivery truck, careened into a water-filled pit.
In 1996, President Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act denying federal recognition of same-sex marriages, a day after saying the law should not be used as an excuse for discrimination, violence or intimidation against gays and lesbians. (Although never formally repealed, DoMA was effectively overturned by U.S. Supreme Court decisions in 2013 and 2015.)