What Happened on September 14?

  • The Star Spangled Banner poem was written. (1814) The poem was written by Francis Scott Key, who was inspired after seeing a War of 1812 battle in Maryland at Fort McHenry. The poem itself was called Defence of Fort McHenry; it later became the US national anthem, The Star Spangled Banner.

  • The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) was founded. (1960) OPEC is a group of 12 major oil-exporting countries throughout the world, including Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq and Algeria. Its headquarters are located in Vienna, Austria.

  • The British Empire adopted the Gregorian calendar and lost 11 days. (1752) The Gregorian calendar is now used internationally. It was suggested by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582 because the time between equinoxes is 11 minutes shorter than on the Julian calendar. In the Julian calendar, Easter kept moving earlier and earlier in the year because the celebrated day was tied to the equinox.

  • The Major League Baseball strike caused the season to be canceled. (1994) The strike, which began on August 12th, ultimately lasted 232 days. It caused the the World Series to be canceled for the first time since 1904.

  • The first American-born Catholic saint was canonized. (1975) Pope Paul VI canonized Elizabeth Ann Seton at the Vatican. Seton founded the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph and provided poor children with free education.

  • The "Fire of Moscow" began. (1812) Most residents and Russian troops had fled the city upon Napoleon's arrival with his troops. The fire started on the orders of Count Rostopchin to torch anything that Napoleon's army might find useful. The fire burned for four days, destroying most of the city — 122 churches, more than 8,000 stores and almost 6,500 homes.

  • The first person flew solo across the Atlantic Ocean in a hot air balloon. (1984) Joe Kittinger, a pilot for the United States Air Force, flew across the Atlantic in Balloon of Peace in four days, beginning his journey on this day. Kittinger also holds records for fastest, longest and highest skydives.

  • Construction began on the United Nations headquarters. (1948) The world peace-keeping organization is headquartered in New York City. It has over 190 member countries.

  • The MLB record for number of home runs hit in a single game was set by the Toronto Blue Jays. (1987) The Blue Jays hit a whopping 10 home runs in a game against the Baltimore Orioles.

  • Theodore Roosevelt became the youngest US President in history when President McKinley died. (1901) Eight days before, President McKinley had been shot by an assassin. When he died from the wounds, his Vice President, Theodore Roosevelt, assumed office at age 42. John F. Kennedy was the second youngest American president; he was 43 years old when he was inaugurated.

Discussion Comments


September 14 is also the birthday of my favorite singer -- Amy Winehouse. She was born on September 14, 1983.

She was so talented and had a beautiful voice. She won five grammy awards! No one before her had won so many grammy awards at the same time.

Her death was shocking and so tragic. I still can't believe she's gone.


@feruze-- McKinley was shot by an anarchist. His assassin was caught and put to death.

They first thought that McKinley would be okay but he didn't make it. He died from complications, I think it was gangrene.

McKinley was a good president, but Theodore Roosevelt was even better. One of his policies was to limit the power of large corporations. That's something I support. I would have liked to have lived during his term.


Why was President McKinley assassinated? Did they catch the assassin?

Isn't Roosevelt the longest serving president in US history? It's interesting that he became president by chance.

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