The 254th day of the year based on the Gregorian Calendar; September 11th is a day that most associate with the tragedy that befell the World Trade Center Towers in 2001. While the horrifying events of that day will likely live on in infamy forever, there are several other interesting events from that date throughout history. From the theft of the Hope Diamond to the birth of an American rapper/actor to the tragedy of the terrorist attacks, September 11th is a historic date.
On this day in …
1297: Braveheart Wins
Immortalized in the movie Braveheart, William Wallace was a leader in the Scottish rebellion against English rule in the late 13th century. On September 11, 1297, Wallace and his troop of Scottish rebels were confronted at the river (Forth) near Stirling in lower Scotland.
Although they were greatly outnumbered, Wallace led his men to a victory over the British by slaughtering them as they crossed the Stirling Bridge. This overwhelming victory and subsequent capture of Stirling Castle along the Scottish/English border left Scotland nearly free of English occupants for a time.
1792: Theft of the Hope Diamond
During the confusion of the French Revolution and the Reign of Terror, many of the crown jewels of France where stolen. Known as French Blue at the time (among other names) the Hope Diamond was cut down to its current size of 45.52 carats to disguise it. Little is known about what happened to it until it reappeared in England in 1812 or 1830, depending upon who you believe.
1857: Mountain Meadows Massacre
Dubbed “the darkest deed of the nineteenth century,” 120 men, women and children were slaughtered by Mormons disguised as Indians in a southern Utah area known as Mountain Meadows. Only one man was prosecuted, John D. Lee, but many other members of the Mormon community were suspected of participating. In fact, there is still much controversy over how much Brigham Young, the leader of the Mormon religion, had to do with the massacre.
1941: Construction of the Pentagon begins
Across the Potomac River from Washington DC, in the state of Virginia and just a stone’s throw east of Arlington National Cemetery sits the US Pentagon. Housing the countries Department of Defense, this building’s construction began on this day in 1941. Originally known as Arlington Farm, the plot of land used was once part of Robert E. Lee’s estate.
2017: Hurricane Irma
Hurricane Irma was the most powerful hurricane in the open Atlantic region. It cut a path of destruction that included Barbuda, Saint Barth, Saint Martin, Anguilla, the Virgin Islands and several mainland US states. On September 11th, it took out power to more than seven million homes throughout Georgia and Florida.
On this day in …
1977: Christopher Bridges (Ludacris)
American rapper and actor Christopher Bridges is better known as Ludacris. Born in Champaign, IL, he started rapping at only nine years of age. Today, he is known for his music as well as his role in the Fast & Furious franchise of movies.
On this day in …
2001: 9/11 victims
No discussion of September 11th is complete without considering those souls who were lost during the terrorist attacks that took place in the U.S. on this date. At the World Trade Towers themselves, more than 2,606 people died in the collapse as well as several firefighters, police officers, and other first responders in the resulting rescue effort.
Another 125 people lost their lives in the attack on the Pentagon that followed soon after. In addition, 64 people died while stopping a third attack and causing their plane to crash early in a Pennsylvania field.
The total death toll came to 2,977 people killed in New York City, Washington DC, and outside of Shanksville, PA.