Nov. 16, 1532 – Francisco Pizarro and his men, including Hernando de Soto, captured Inca Emperor Atahualpa at the Battle of Cajamarca.
Nov. 16, 1643 – French-English jeweler and explorer Jean Chardin was born in Paris, France. His 10-volume book “The Travels of Sir John Chardin” is regarded as one of the finest works of early Western scholarship on Persia and the Near East in general.
Nov. 16, 1776 – During the American Revolutionary War, 5,000 British Redcoats and 3,000 Hessian mercenaries captured Fort Washington from the Patriots, who were under the command of Col. Robert Magaw. Fort Washington stood at the current location of Bennet Park in the Washington Heights neighborhood of New York City, near the George Washington Bridge, at the corner of Fort Washington Avenue and 183rd Street. Fort Washington Park and Fort Washington Point lay beneath the site along the Hudson River.
Nov. 16, 1776 – During the American Revolution, the United Provinces (Low Countries) recognized the independence of the United States.
Nov. 16, 1777 – During the American Revolution, American forces abandoned Fort Mifflin, Pa.
Nov. 16, 1779 – Finnish botanist and explorer Pehr Kalm died at Turku, Finland at the age of 63.
Nov. 16, 1802 – French botanist and explorer André Michaux died in Madagascar at the age of 56.
Nov. 16, 1813 – During the Creek War, General Ferdinand Claiborne’s main force, which was traveling east, arrived at the Alabama River. The next day, they ferried across, and on Weatherford’s Bluff, in the “best part of the enemy’s country,” they built a post that the general named for himself – Fort Claiborne. From this strategic spot, Claiborne reported, they could “cut the savages off from the river, and from their growing crops… (and) render their communication with Pensacola more hazardous.”
Nov. 16, 1841 – A meeting was held to reorganized and restore the charter of Alabama Lodge No. 3 in Monroe County, Ala. after Masonry was halted in the 1830s when the Grand Lodge of Alabama extinguished its lights for two years due to anti-Masonic sentiment.
Nov. 16, 1855 – David Livingstone became the first European to see the Victoria Falls in what is now present-day Zambia-Zimbabwe.
Nov. 16, 1859 – Two brothers, Irvin and Stephen Ward, robbed and killed Allen Page, who was traveling the Federal Road in Conecuh County, Ala. with John Wright after selling their cotton at Claiborne. A posse caught the brothers, who confessed. They were hung two days later.
Nov. 16, 1861 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Doolan’s Farm, Va. in the vicinity of Taylor’s Corner and Falls Church, Va.
Nov. 16, 1863 – During the Civil War, at the Battle of Campbell’s Station, Union forces under General Ambrose Burnside held off Confederates under General James Longstreet near Knoxville, Tennessee. Campbell Station was the first engagement of Longstreet’s attempt to capture Knoxville, an area of intense anti-Confederate sentiment. The Union lost 318 men killed and wounded; the Confederates lost 174.
Nov. 16, 1864 – During the Civil War, a skirmish occurred at Shoal Creek, Ala.
Nov. 16, 1873 - W. C. Handy was born in Florence, Ala. Handy brought the sounds of African-American blues to mainstream culture when he composed a song in 1909 that became known as “The Memphis Blues.” Handy, known as “Father of the Blues,” had a long career that yielded many other blues hits, such as “Beale Street Blues” and “St. Louis Blues.” Handy died in 1958.
Nov. 16, 1875 - Alabama’s Constitution of 1875 was ratified. The Bourbon Democrats, or "Redeemers," having claimed to “redeem” the Alabama people from the Reconstruction rule of carpetbaggers and scalawags, wrote a new constitution to replace the one of 1868. It was a conservative document that gave the Democrats, and especially Black Belt planters, a firm grip on their recently reacquired control of state government.
Nov. 16, 1876 – The Pickens County Courthouse in Carrollton, Ala., soon after its completion, caught fire. When evidence suggested arson, Carrollton’s citizens set out on a manhunt – but they also immediately began building a new courthouse. Former slave Henry Wells was eventually arrested for burning the courthouse.
Nov. 16, 1889 – Playwright and director George S. Kaufman was born in Pittsburgh, Pa.
Nov. 16, 1899 – Mary Margaret McBride, known as the "First Lady of Radio," was born in Paris, Missouri. She was one of the first radio interviewers to bring the techniques of newspaper journalism to the airwaves, and in the first 20 years of her syndicated program, she interviewed more than 30,000 guests from the world of politics, literature, arts, and entertainment. In the late 1940s, she had six million daily listeners, most of them housewives.
Nov. 16, 1905 - More than 40 tickets were sold at the train depot in Beatrice, Ala. to persons going to Selma to the fair.
Nov. 16, 1907 – The Indian Territory and Oklahoma Territory joined to form Oklahoma, which is admitted as the 46th U.S. state.
Nov. 16, 1910 – The first funeral service was held at Oak Grove Baptist Church between Repton and Belleville in Conecuh County, Ala., for church member William H. Ballard, who for years was the only grave in the church cemetery.
Nov. 16, 1914 - The fall term of the Monroe County, Ala. circuit court convened under Judge John T. Lackland with Solicitor McDuffie representing the state. The murder trial against Torrey Puryear was set to start on Nov. 25, and the murder trial against Jim Sampson was set for Nov. 27.
Nov. 16, 1914 - The Federal Reserve opened its doors as the quasi-national bank in the United States, much to the chagrin of many who saw it as a dangerous consolidation of power.
Nov. 16, 1920 – H.P. Lovecraft completed his short story, “From Beyond,” which was originally published in Issue No. 10 of “The Fantasy Fan” in June 1934.
Nov. 16, 1930 – Author Chinua Achebe was born in Ogidi, Nigeria. He is best known for his 1958 novel, “Things Fall Apart.”
Nov. 16, 1940 – According to The Alabama Journal, Evergreen and Birmingham tied for the second coldest spots in the entire state of Alabama with a reported low temperature of 15 degrees.
Nov. 16, 1945 - Project Paperclip saw the United States "import" 88 German scientists to assist in rocket development. Many in the parapolitical research community point to this dubious event as the start of an infiltration of America by darker forces.
Nov. 16, 1950 – The Monroe Journal reported that Monroeville, Ala. postmistress Emma Yarbrough had announced that 125 new post office boxes were being installed in the Monroeville Post Office to help alleviate theh shortage of post office boxes in the city. Installation work was expected to be completed in about 30 days. At this time, there was no mail delivery service in Monroeville, and the rapid growth of the town had led to a shortage in post office boxes.
Nov. 16, 1950 – The Monroe Journal reported that practically all the private papers taken during the burglary of the W.M. Thompson general store at Fountain, Ala. on the night of Nov. 6 had been recovered, although no arrests had been made. The papers were recovered during the previous week in a small creek near Greenville, Monroe Sheriff E.E. Nicholas reported. A school boy spotted part of the papers floating down the creek and most of the papers taken from the safe, with the exception of some bonds and stocks, were recovered after the youth notified Butler County officers of his discovery.
Nov. 16, 1952 - In the “Peanuts” comic strip, Lucy first held a football for Charlie Brown.
Nov. 16, 1954 – National Book Award-winning fiction author Andrea Barrett was born in Boston, Mass.
Nov. 16, 1955 -The television program “The Final Tribute,” teleplay by Alabama author Octavus Roy Cohen, was broadcast.
Nov. 16, 1957 - Jim Brown of the Cleveland Browns set an NFL season rushing record of 1,163 yards after only eight games.
Nov. 16, 1957 - Notre Dame beat Oklahoma, 7-0, ending the Sooners’ 47-game, 1,512-day college football winning streak. The game also marked the first time in more than 120 games that Oklahoma didn’t score a single point.
Nov. 16, 1959 - The New York Times published a 300-word account of the Clutter family murders, and and this short story interested Truman Capote so much that he decided to investigate the murders. The result was his book, “In Cold Blood.”
Nov. 16, 1964 – Major League Baseball pitcher Dwight Gooden was born in Tampa, Fla. He would go on to play for the New York Mets, New York Yankees, Cleveland Indians, Houston Astros and Tampa Bay Devils Rays.
Nov. 16, 1966 – The Mothman was first reported in the Point Pleasant Register on this date under the headline “Couples See Man-Sized Bird… Creature… Something.”
Nov. 16, 1966 – English journalist, author and explorer Tahir Shah was born in London, England.
Nov. 16, 1969 - U.S. President Nixon became the first president to attend a regular season National Football League game while in office. The Dallas Cowboys beat the Washington Redskins, 41-28.
Nov. 16, 1970 – Army SFC Charles Rayford Sellers of Jackson, Ala. was killed in action in Vietnam.
Nov. 16, 1974 – J.U. Blacksher School at Uriah, Ala. was scheduled to celebrate its 50th anniversary with a parade, alumni meeting, banquet and homecoming football game. The alumni meeting was scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. and Blacksher’s first graduating class – the Class of 1925 – was to be recognized. Former student A.G. “Buddy” Simmons of Decatur was to be the guest speaker.
Nov. 16, 1982 - An agreement was announced on the 57th day of a strike by National Football League players.
Nov. 16, 1985 – The Catherine Colts, the No. 1-ranked Class A team in the APSA, beat Sparta Academy, 44-8, in the opening round of the state playoffs in Catherine, Ala. Danny Reed scored Sparta’s only touchdown on a 12-yard pass from Walker, and Chad Grace scored the two-point conversion on a pass from Walker. Other standout Sparta players in that game ncluded Lee Adams, Jeff Carrier, Lynn Ralls, Mark Rigsby, Brad Watts and Tim Wilson.
Nov. 16, 1992 – Conecuh County (Ala.) Probate Judge Rogene Booker delivered the oath of office to the incoming Conecuh County Board of Education. Members of the school board included Jean Harter, Willene Whatley, David Cook, Robert J. Floyd and Johnny F. Atkins. Floyd was chairman, and Cook was vice-chairman.
Nov. 16, 1997 - The 100th episode of "X-Files" aired on FOX.
Nov. 16, 1997 - Morton Anderson of the New Orleans Saints became only the fifth player in NFL history to reach 1,600 career points when he kicked an extra point.
Nov. 16, 1998 - Roger Clemens of the Toronto Blue Jays became the first pitcher to win five Cy Young Awards.
Nov. 16, 2001 - The movie "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" opened in the U.S. and U.K.
Nov. 16, 2001 – Monroe Academy won its sixth state football title with a 33-12 win over Bessemer Academy thanks to touchdowns touchdowns by Karl James (K.J.) Lazenby, Jeff Wasden and Tyler Dawson.
Nov. 16, 2004 - President George W. Bush nominated National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice to serve as Secretary of State. The Birmingham native was the first African American woman to serve in that office. She was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on January 26, 2005.