Sept. 22, 1554 – Spanish explorer Francisco Vázquez de Coronado, his health badly deteriorated from injuries and the toll of his strenuous travels, died of an infectious disease around the age of 44 in Mexico City. He never found the fabled cities of gold that he had sought for decades. But while he never found the golden cities he sought, Coronado did succeed in giving the Spanish and the rest of the world their first fairly accurate understanding of the inhabitants and geography of the southern half of the present United States.
Sept. 22, 1692 – During the Salem witchcraft trials, Martha Corey, Margaret Scott, Mary Easty, Alice Parker, Ann Pudeator, Willmott Redd, Samuel Wardwell and Mary Parker were hanged. Preceded by 11 other hangings, plus five who died in prison and one who was crushed to death refusing to enter a plea, these eight were the last people hanged for witchcraft in England's North American colonies. Dorcas Hoar escaped execution by confessing.
Sept. 22, 1776 - During the American Revolutionary War, Nathan Hale, a captain in the Continental Army, was hanged as a spy by the British in New York City. After being led to the gallows, legend holds that the 21-year-old Hale said, “I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country.” There is no historical record to prove that Hale actually made this statement, but, if he did, he may have been inspired by these lines in English author Joseph Addison’s 1713 play Cato: “What a pity it is/That we can die but once to serve our country.”
Sept. 22, 1777 – American botanist and explorer John Bartram died at the age of 78 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Colony.
Sept. 22, 1789 - The U.S. Congress authorized the office of Postmaster General.
Sept. 22, 1823 – Joseph Smith stated that he found the Golden plates on this date after being directed by God through the Angel Moroni to the place where they were buried.
Sept. 22, 1835 – In Baltimore, Edgar Allan Poe secretly married Virginia, his cousin. He was 26 and she was 13, though she is listed on the marriage certificate as being 21.
Sept. 22, 1837 – Thomas S. Roach and James McCall were commissioned as Monroe County, Alabama’s Circuit Court Clerks, and Edward T. Broughton was commissioned as Monroe County’s Sheriff.
Sept. 22, 1857 – Alexander Autrey, the second white man to settle in Conecuh County, Ala. and founder of Hampden Ridge, died at his home in Conecuh County, age 77.
Sept. 22, 1861 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Eliott’s Mill or Camp Critenden, Mo. Another skirmish was also fought at Osceola, Mo.
Sept. 22, 1861 - John Charles Fremont was not having a happy career as military administrator of St. Louis. First he had declared martial law. Then followed this heavy-handed maneuver with a mini-Emancipation Proclamation for the state of Missouri. This had brought down the wrath of Frank Blair Jr., not to mention the Lincoln Administration, upon his head. Over the previous week the dispute had escalated until Fremont had had Blair arrested. What Fremont was supposed to have done the previous week was fight Sterling Price’s Confederate force and rescue the Federals holed up in Lexington. The news of their surrender to Price reached St. Louis today. Even Fremont’s supporters were disgusted with his performance.
Sept. 22, 1862 – During the Civil War, U.S. President Abraham Lincoln issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. It stated that all slaves held within rebel states would be free as of January 1, 1863. By the end of the war, more than 500,000 slaves had fled to freedom behind Northern lines and about 200,000 black soldiers and sailors, many of them former slaves, served in the armed forces.
Sept. 22, 1862 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Vinegar Hill, Ky. and at Ashby’s Gap, Va. Federal forces also reoccuppied Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia.
Sept. 22, 1863 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Marrow Bone Creek, Kentucky; at Rockville, Maryland; and in La Fayette County, Missouri.
Sept. 22, 1863 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Missionary Ridge and Shallow Ford Gap, near Chattanooga, Tennessee, bringing the Chickamauga Campaign to a close as General Braxton Bragg occupied the high ground of Missionary Ridge and Lookout Mountain surrounding Chattanooga and the Federal Army of the Cumberland.
Sept. 22, 1863 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Centreville, Warrenton, Orange Court House and Raccoon Ford, Virginia; and an engagement was fought at Blountsville, Tenn.
Sept. 22, 1863 – During the Civil War, Federal troops destroyed the Hudson Place Salt Works, near Darien, Georgia.
Sept. 22, 1863 – During the Civil War, Joseph Shelby's raid into Missouri and Arkansas began and continued until Oct. 26.
Sept. 22, 1864 – During the Civil War, a seven-day Federal operation began between Helena and Alligator Bayou, Arkansas.
Sept. 22, 1864 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Carthage, Longwood, Patterson and Sikeston, Mo.; and at Millford, Va. The first of a two days of skirmishing began at Rolling Fork, Mississippi.
Sept. 22, 1864 – During the Civil War, the Battle of Fisher's Hill was fought. Sheridan had almost 30,000 men, while Early had just under 10,000. Union losses were around 500, Confederate over 1,200.
Sept. 22, 1875 – J.M. McNeil was named postmaster at Burnt Corn, Ala.
Sept. 22, 1879 – The Monroeville (Ala.) Institute opened with W.Y. Titcomb as principal and Miss B.C. McCorvey as assistant.
Sept. 22, 1888 – The first issue of National Geographic Magazine was published.
Sept. 22, 1889 – On this Sunday night, Monroeville, Ala. was struck by “the Equinoctial or September gale.”
Sept. 22, 1895 – John H. Moore Sr., one of Monroe County’s “oldest and best citizens,” died at his home near Perdue Hill on this Sunday after a “long and painful illness.”
Sept. 22, 1906 – Late on a payday Saturday night, Ed Dean shot and killed Will Neville at Peterman, Ala. Dean later turned himself into the Sheriff in Monroeville and was released on bond.
Sept. 22, 1907 – Atmore, Ala. native Claude D. Kelley was born. He would go on to serve five terms as the commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservations and Natural Resources and 11 years as pres
headed the Alabama public parks system during the administration of then-Gov.
Lurleen B. Wallace in the 1960s.
Sept. 22, 1914 - A.J. Lee of Burnt Corn, Ala. sent The Evergreen Courant “the largest boll of cotton” the newspaper staff had ever seen. Lee said the boll was taken from a stalk nine feet and five inches tall.
Sept. 22, 1914 – Charles R. Cook, a well known Monroe County, Ala. native, was shot and killed in McKinnonville, Fla. Cook ran a commissary there and one of his employees got into a fight with another man at the store. Cook apparently tried to break them up, and he and his employee were both shot. Cook’s remains were brought back to Monroe County and buried at Perdue Hill.
Sept. 22, 1920 – National Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher and manager Bob Lemon was born in San Bernadino, Calif. He went on to play for the Cleveland Indians and later managed the Kansas City Royals, the Chicago White Sox and the New York Yankees. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1976.
Sept. 22, 1927 – National Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher and manager Tommy Lasorda was born in Norristown, Pa. He went on to play for the Brooklyn Dodgers and the Kansas City Athletics and managed the Los Angeles Dodgers from 1976 to 1996. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1997.
Sept. 22, 1940 - In North End, Boston, a Paul Revere Statue, made by Cyrus Dallin, was unveiled.
Sept. 22, 1941 – During World War II, on Jewish New Year Day, the German SS murdered 6,000 Jews in Vinnytsia, Ukraine. Those were the survivors of the previous killings that took place a few days earlier in which about 24,000 Jews were executed.
Sept. 22, 1952 – Army SFC Rudolph Farmer of Covington County, Ala. was killed in action in Korea.
Sept. 22, 1961 – Congress approved a bill to establish the Peace Corps and President John F. Kennedy signed it into law.
Sept. 22, 1961 - Lyeffion High School, under new head coach Shirley Frazier, was scheduled to open the 1961 season in Beatrice. Players on Lyeffion’s team that season included Shelton Cook, Patton Brown, Larry Smith, Elmer Gaskey, Donnie Hamrac, Wadie Salter, Harold Wilson, Allen Chavers, Keith Holcombe, Ronnie Golson, Bobby Salter, Charles Salter, Don Garrettt, Mickey Fountain, Hayward Salter, Guy Chavers, Homer Chavers, Mike Burt, Larry Blackmon and Don Slater.
Sept. 22, 1963 – In an incident attributed to the “Bermuda Triangle,” a C-132 Cargomaster disappeared between Delaware and its destination in the Azores. The Coast Guard and Navy conducted an intensive search for the plane until Sept. 25, but found nothing that could be identified with the missing plane.
Sept. 22, 1964 - Presidential candidate Barry Goldwater, Republican senator from Arizona, charged that President Lyndon Johnson lied to the American people and that he was committing the United States to war “recklessly.” Having previously called the war “McNamara’s War,” he now described it as “Johnson’s War.”
Sept. 22, 1966 – The Conecuh County, Ala. Board of Directors approved the purchase of 30 voting machines for use in that year’s November general election, which eliminated the need for paper ballots in future county elections, other than for absentee voting.
Sept. 22, 1968 - Cesar Tovar became the second Major League Baseball player to play all nine positions in one game.
Sept. 22, 1969 - Willie Mays hit his 600th career home run.
Sept. 22, 1971 – Captain Ernest Medina was acquitted of all charges relating to the My Lai massacre of March 1968. His unit, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 20th Infantry, 11th Infantry Brigade (Light) of the 23rd (Americal) Division, was charged with the murder of over 200 Vietnamese civilians, including women and children, at My Lai 4, a cluster of hamlets that made up Son My village in Son Tinh District in Quang Ngai Province in the coastal lowlands of I Corps Tactical Zone.
Sept. 22, 1975 – Sara Jane Moore tried to assassinate U.S. President Gerald Ford, but was foiled by Oliver Sipple.
Sept. 22, 1976 - Author Hudson Strode died in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Sept. 22, 1976 – NFL offensive lineman Mo Collins was born in Charlotte, N.C. He went on to play for the University of Florida and the Oakland Raiders.
Sept. 22, 1979 – The Vela Incident (also known as the South Atlantic Flash) was observed near Bouvet Island and was thought to have been a nuclear weapons test, but remains highly disputed. The incident was an unidentified "double flash" of light detected by an American Vela Hotel satellite near the Prince Edward Islands off Antarctica. The most widespread theory among those who believe the flash was of nuclear origin is that it resulted from a joint South African and Israeli nuclear test.
Sept. 22, 1980 - A border conflict between Iran and Iraq developed into a full-scale war when Iraq invaded Iran.
Sept. 22, 1985 - NBC began airing the series "Amazing Stories."
Sept. 22, 1988 – Alabama Governor Guy Hunt signed an official proclamation at the state capitol in Montgomery that formally proclaimed the Town of Castleberry as the “Strawberry Capital of Alabama.”
Sept. 22, 1989 – At Brooks Memorial Stadium in Evergreen, Ala., Hillcrest High School improved to 5-0 overall with a 27-7 win over UMS-Wright, the No. 4-ranked team in Class 4A. Derrick Richardson led Hillcrest with 91 yards rushing, and Russell Meeks led the defense with eight solos and three assists. Other outstanding Hillcrest players in that game included Marvin Cunningham, Fred Fountain, John Gulley, John Johnson, George Moncrease, Keith Richardson, Terrance Rudolph and Tyrone Sigler.
Sept. 22, 1989 – Ashford Academy beat Sparta Academy, 14-8, in Ashford. Quarterback Tim Salter scored Sparta’s only touchdown on an eight-yard run and then passed to Steven Gall for the extra two. Other outstanding Sparta players in the Ashford game included Jason Baker, Craig Blackburn and Jeff Brundage. Chuck Ledbetter was Sparta’s head coach.
Sept. 22, 1990 - Brit Steve Woodmore was declared the world's fastest talker, blabbing 595 words in 56 seconds. The loquacious American, Fran Capo holds the Guinness World Record as the fastest-talking female.
Sept. 22, 1991 – The Dead Sea Scrolls were made available to the public for the first time by the Huntington Library.
Sept. 22, 1993 – During foggy conditions, a barge struck a railroad bridge near Mobile, Ala., causing the deadliest train wreck in Amtrak history as 47 people died when Amtrak's Maimi-bound Sunset Limited jumped the rails on the weakened bridge and plunged into Big Bayou Canot.
Sept. 22, 2000 – A team of 14 researchers that had tracked the elusive Bigfoot for a week deep in the mountains of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in Washington state found, in a muddy wallow near Mt. Adams, an imprint of a Bigfoot’s hair-covered lower body as it lay on its side, apparently reaching over to get some fruit. On Oct. 23, Idaho State University issued a press release stating that a team of investigators had examined the plaster cast and agreed that it could not be “attributed to any commonly known Northwest animal and may present an uknown primate.”
Sept. 22, 2004 - The pilot episode of "Lost" aired.
Sept. 22, 2006 - Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants tied Hank Aaron's National League home run record when he hit is 733rd.
Sept. 22, 2008 – First baseman Andy Phillips of Tuscaloosa, Ala. made his last Major League Baseball appearance, taking the field one last time for the Cincinnati Reds.
Sept. 22, 2011 – John Grisham was presented with the inaugural Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction for his novel, “The Confession,” during a special ceremony at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
Sept. 22, 2015 – National Baseall Hall of Fame catcher, outfielder and manager Yogi Berra died at the age of 90 in West Caldwell, N.J. During his career, he played for the New York Yankees and the New York Mets, and he also managed the Yankees and the Mets. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1972.