Today is Wednesday, Jan. 9, the ninth day of 2019. There are 356 days left in the year.

On this date in history

On Jan. 9, 1861, Mississippi became the second state to secede from the Union.

1788 — Connecticut became the fifth state to ratify the Constitution.

1908 — French philosopher and feminist Simone de Beauvoir was born in Paris.

1913 — Richard Milhous Nixon, the 37th president of the United States, was born in Yorba Linda.

1916, — The World War I Battle of Gallipoli ended after eight months with an Ottoman Empire victory as Allied forces withdrew.

1945 — During World War II, American forces began landing on the shores of Lingayen Gulf in the Philippines as the Battle of Luzon got underway, resulting in an Allied victory over Imperial Japanese forces.

1987 — The White House released a January 1986 memorandum prepared for President Ronald Reagan by Lt. Col. Oliver L. North showing a link between U.S. arms sales to Iran and the release of American hostages in Lebanon.

1997 — A Comair commuter plane crashed 18 miles short of the Detroit Metropolitan Airport, killing all 29 people on board.

2001 — Linda Chavez withdrew her bid to be President-elect George W. Bush’s Secretary of Labor because of controversy over an immigrant in the U.S. illegally who’d once lived with her.

Ten years ago —  President-elect Barack Obama announced he had picked retired Adm. Dennis Blair to be the national intelligence director and Leon Panetta to head the CIA. A Saudi supertanker, the Sirius Star, and its crew of 25 were released at the end of a two-month standoff in the Gulf of Aden after pirates were reportedly paid $3 million in ransom. (Five pirates were said to have drowned with their share of the money when their boat overturned.)

Five years ago — A chemical plant spill into West Virginia’s Elk River contaminated the water supply for Charleston, forcing more than 300,000 water customers in nine counties to stop using tap water. Activist poet-playwright Amiri Baraka, 79, died at a hospital in Newark, New Jersey.

One year ago — Downpours sent mud and boulders roaring down Southern California hillsides that had been stripped of vegetation by a gigantic wildfire; more than 20 people died and hundreds of homes were damaged or destroyed.

Today’s birthdays

Author Judith Krantz is 91. Football Hall of Famer Bart Starr is 85. Actress K. Callan is 83. Folk singer Joan Baez is 78. Rock musician Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin) is 75. Actor John Doman is 74. Singer David Johansen (aka Buster Poindexter) is 69. Singer Crystal Gayle is 68. Actor J.K. Simmons is 64. Actress Joely Richardson is 54. Rock musician Carl Bell (Fuel) is 52. Actor David Costabile is 52. Rock singer Steve Harwell (Smash Mouth) is 52. Rock singer-musician Dave Matthews is 52. Actress-director Joey Lauren Adams is 51. Actress Angela Bettis is 46. Actor Omari Hardwick is 45. Roots singer-songwriter Hayes Carll is 43. Singer A.J. McLean (Backstreet Boys) is 41. Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, is 37. Pop-rock musician Drew Brown (OneRepublic) is 35. Rock-soul singer Paolo Nutini is 32. Actress Nina Dobrev is 30. Actor Basil Eidenbenz is 26. Actress Kerris Dorsey is 21. Actor Tyree Brown is 15.

Thought for today

“One’s lifework, I have learned, grows with the working and the living. Do it as if your life depended on it, and first thing you know, you’ll have made a life out of it. A good life, too.” — Theresa Helburn, American theatrical producer (1887-1959).

— The Associated Press

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