• On This Date

Today's Highlight in History:

On Nov. 30, 1782, the United States and Britain signed preliminary peace articles in Paris for ending the Revolutionary War; the Treaty of Paris was signed in Sept. 1783.

On this date:

In 1835, Samuel Langhorne Clemens — better known as Mark Twain — was born in Florida, Missouri.

In 1874, British statesman Sir Winston Churchill was born at Blenheim Palace.

In 1900, Irish writer Oscar Wilde died in Paris at age 46.

In 1936, London's famed Crystal Palace, constructed for the Great Exhibition of 1851, was destroyed in a fire.

In 1960, the last DeSoto was built by Chrysler, which had decided to retire the brand after 32 years.

In 1965, "Unsafe at Any Speed" by Ralph Nader, a book highly critical of the U.S. auto industry, was first released in hardcover by Grossman Publishers.

In 1981, the United States and the Soviet Union opened negotiations in Geneva aimed at reducing nuclear weapons in Europe.

In 1982, the Michael Jackson album "Thriller" was released by Epic Records. The motion picture "Gandhi," starring Ben Kingsley as the Indian nationalist leader, had its world premiere in New Delhi.

In 1988, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co. was declared the winner of the corporate free-for-all to take over RJR Nabisco Inc. with a bid of $24.53 billion.

In 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the Brady Bill, which required a five-day waiting period for handgun purchases and background checks of prospective buyers.

In 2000, Al Gore's lawyers battled for his political survival in the Florida and U.S. Supreme Courts; meanwhile, GOP lawmakers in Tallahassee moved to award the presidency to George W. Bush in case the courts did not by appointing their own slate of electors.

In 2013, Paul Walker, 40, the star of the "Fast & Furious" movie series, died with his friend, Roger W. Rodas, who was at the wheel of a Porsche sports car that crashed and burned north of Los Angeles.

Ten years ago: Retired Ohio auto worker John Demjanjuk went on trial in Munich, Germany, accused of helping to kill 27,900 Jews as a Nazi death camp guard. (Demjanjuk was convicted in May 2011 of being an accessory to murder; he was sentenced to five years in prison, but was released while his conviction was under appeal; he died in March 2012 at age 91.) In Geneva, the Large Hadron Collider, the world's largest atom smasher, broke a world record for proton acceleration. Serena Williams was fined a record $82,500 for her tirade at a U.S. Open line judge. Tiger Woods withdrew from his own golf tournament, citing injuries from a car crash near his Florida home.

Five years ago: Pope Francis and the spiritual leader of the world's Orthodox Christians, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, issued a joint declaration at the end of Francis' visit to Turkey demanding an end to violent persecution of Christians in the Middle East and calling for dialogue with Muslims. Anthony Marshall, 90, a decorated World War II veteran, diplomat and Broadway producer who saw his aristocratic life unravel as he was convicted in 1990 of raiding the fortune of his socialite mother, Brooke Astor, died in New York.

One year ago: Former President George H.W. Bush, a World War II hero who rose through the political ranks to the nation’s highest office, died at his Houston home at the age of 94; his wife of more than 70 years, Barbara Bush, had died in April. On the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires, President Donald Trump and the leaders of Canada and Mexico signed a revised North American trade pact. (The agreement hasn’t yet been approved by U.S. lawmakers.) The Marriott hotel chain announced that hackers had stolen credit card and other information on as many as 500 million guests over a period of four years. A white former Dallas police officer was indicted on a murder charge, nearly three months after she fatally shot an unarmed black neighbor whose apartment she said she entered by mistake. (Amber Guyger was convicted and sentenced to ten years in prison.)

Today's Birthdays: G. Gordon Liddy is 89. Country singer-recording executive Jimmy Bowen is 82. Movie director Ridley Scott is 82. Screenwriter Geoffrey C. Ward is 79. Movie writer-director Terrence Malick is 76. Rock musician Roger Glover (Deep Purple) is 74. Playwright David Mamet is 72. Actor Mandy Patinkin is 67. Musician Shuggie Otis is 66. Country singer Jeannie Kendall is 65. Singer Billy Idol is 64. Historian Michael Beschloss is 64. Rock musician John Ashton (The Psychedelic Furs) is 62. Comedian Colin Mochrie is 62. Former football and baseball player Bo Jackson is 57. Rapper Jalil (Whodini) is 56. Actor-director Ben Stiller is 54. Rock musician Mike Stone is 50. Music producer Steve Aoki is 42. Singer Clay Aiken is 41. Actor Billy Lush is 38. Actress Elisha Cuthbert is 37. Actress Kaley Cuoco is 34. Model Chrissy Teigen is 34. Actress Christel Khalil is 32. Actress Rebecca Rittenhouse is 31. Actress Adelaide Clemens is 30.

Thought for Today: "Civilization is the limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities." — Mark Twain (1835-1910).

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