On July 4, 1776, the American colonies told Britain to kiss their hairy American asses. This began the Revolutionary War, during which the Redcoats were coming, a shot was heard 'round the world' and Paul Revere could see the whites of their eyes and knew that their taxes were too high.
The complexities of war demanded organization between the states, so they established Articles of Confederation, which in turn created a Continental Congress. This Congress was adequate to see them through the war, but by the late 1780s it became clear that both the Continental Congress and the Articles of Confederation sucked.
Even way back then Americans didn't want anything to do with anything that sucked (unless it meant a substantial discount, which in this case it did not).
The Continental Congress tried to fix the Articles of Confederation in 1786. The Congress still sucked, of course, and so they failed.
In the spring of 1787 the states sent new delegates to a new convention designed to produce a government that wouldn't be so awful.
On September 17, 1787, the Constitutional Convention voted its approval of a new Constitution, which they immediately ran out to have printed.
The Continental Congress acted with its usual efficiency, and by July 2 of the following year, the Constitution had become the law of the land. The last act of the Continental Congress was to schedule federal elections for their replacements.
Today is Constitution Day in the U.S. Celebrate by refusing to allow soldiers to be billeted in your home.
September 17, 1949 -
Little Rural Riding Hood, the last of Tex Avery's variations on Little Rural Riding Hood, premiered on this date.
Because of budget restraints, animation of this cartoon is reused from Swing Shift Cinderella. The singing voice of Imogene Lynn was included with the reused section of Swing Shift Cinderella.
September 17, 1956 -
Vincente Minnelli's brilliant bio-pix, Lust for Life, opened in NYC on this date.
A very young Michael Douglas and his brother ran screaming from the theater during the scene where Van Goth severs his own ear because they believed their father, Kirk Douglas, had actually harmed himself.
September 17, 1961 -
William Faulkner's favorite TV show, Car 54 Where are You?, premiered on NBC-TV, on this date.
NBC wanted to buy part ownership of the show in exchange for it being renewed for a third season. Creator Nat Hiken refused and the show's sponsor, Proctor and Gamble, tried to take the show to CBS. But there was no room on their schedule. Hiken had become burnt out on the show due to its single camera set-up which required more time. He also had constant problems with Joe E. Ross who had trouble remembering his lines. Hiken gladly ended the show and never worked on another series again.
September 17, 1963 -
David Janssen started running when ABC-TV premiered The Fugitive, on this date.
Legend has it, that after completing the first episode, David Janssen walked up the road with Barry Morse and said, "Do you think we will get a couple of weeks work out of this?"
September 17, 1964 -
United Artists released the third James Bond thriller (in the UK,) Goldfinger, starring Sean Connery, on this date.
Author Ian Fleming partially based the title character of his original 1959 novel Goldfinger on the controversial Modernist architect Erno Goldfinger. When he learned that Fleming was naming the villain of his new James Bond novel Goldfinger, the architect threatened to file a lawsuit against Fleming's publisher in an effort to stop the book's publication. Fleming's publisher then contacted the author to inquire whether Fleming might consider renaming the character, and the novel. Fleming replied that he'd be delighted to alter the name...if he could change the name of the character--and the novel--to "Goldprick." Fleming's publisher quietly settled the architect's lawsuit out of court.
September 17, 1964 -
Dick York started out as Durwood, I mean, Darrin as Bewitched premieres on ABC-TV on this date.
(sorry about the colorized version)
Special furniture was used on the set for Dick York due to his back problems. Other cast and crew members also helped him get around on the set. He had to leave the show in 1969 when he suddenly collapsed to the floor on-set. In interviews years later York had always said he felt horrible because he never finished the show.
September 17, 1965 -
CBS-TV premiered Hogan's Heroes, the first and perhaps only sitcom based in a German prisoner-of-war camp on this date.
Werner Klemperer only agreed to play Col. Klink once he was assured (by the show's creator) that Klink would never succeed in his schemes.
September 17, 1967 -
The first mission from the IMF team from Mission Impossible premiered on CBS-TV on this date.
For several years the series first season was not shown in syndication due to the fact that many people had grown so accustomed to Jim Phelps (Peter Graves) being the leader of the team that many viewers were shocked when they saw the first season reruns with Dan Briggs (Steven Hill) as the leader of the IMF.
September 17, 1972 -
M*A*S*H, premiered on NBC TV on this date.
Jamie Farr and Alan Alda were the only two cast members to have actually served in the US Army in Korea. Both of them did their tours of duty after the 1953 cease fire.
Today in History:
September 17, 1778 -
The United States signed its first treaty with a Native American tribe, the Delaware Nation.
September 17, 1859 -
The San Francisco Call Bulletin published a notice on an inside page announcing that our old pal Joshua Norton, formerly a prominent businessman, had proclaimed himself Norton I, “Emperor of these United States and Protector of Mexico.” He annexed the whole of the US and suspended the Constitution. His Majesty remained on the job until his death in 1880.
September 17, 1908 -
Thomas E. Selfridge becomes the world's first airplane fatality when the Wright Flyer, a craft he's co-piloting with Orville Wright for the U.S. Army, crashed near Fort Meyer, Virginia on this date.
September 17, 1935 -
Len Koenecke was an outfielder with the Brooklyn Dodgers for most of 1935, but near the end of the season he was released for “behavior and erratic play.” The Dodger left St. Louis by passenger plane, but was ordered off in Detroit because of intoxication. Len chartered a three-seater plane for Buffalo that included both the pilot and the co-pilot.
So kids, please remain in you seat until the plane comes to a complete stop or the pilot may have to kill you.
September 17, 1939 -
The Soviet Union invaded Poland, to fulfill its end of the secret protocols contained in the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact. They partition the country along pre-decided lines.
As you well know the last laugh will be on the Russian, when Hitler turns on them.
September 17, 1978 -
The Camp David Peace Accords, a set of agreements between Egypt and Israel was signed on this date. The agreements were the culmination of years of negotiations for peace in the Middle East. Acting as a peace broker, President Jimmy Carter convinced Egyptian President Anwar el-Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin to reach a compromise in their disputes.
Mr. Carter is still alive and kicking.
And so it goes