TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1789, the U.S. Department of War established a regular army, maintaining several hundred troops.
In 1916, The New York Times reported that John D. Rockefeller, the head of Standard Oil, was almost certainly a billionaire, the world's first.
In 1966, the Chevrolet Camaro debuted for sale in U.S. dealerships.
In 1988, NASA launched STS-26, the 26th Space Shuttle mission and the first since the Challenger disaster of Jan. 28, 1986.
TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616), writer; Caravaggio (1571-1610), painter; Enrico Fermi (1901-1954), nuclear physicist; Greer Garson (1904-1996), actress; Gene Autry (1907-1998), singer/actor; Jerry Lee Lewis (1935- ), singer-songwriter; Madeline Kahn (1942-1999), actress; Ian McShane (1942- ), actor; Lech Walesa (1943- ), labor leader/politician; Bryant Gumbel (1948- ), TV journalist; Ann Bancroft (1955- ), author/explorer; Russell Peters (1970- ), actor/comedian; Zachary Levi (1980- ), actor; Kevin Durant (1988- ), basketball player.
TODAY'S FACT: Miguel de Cervantes' "Don Quixote" is widely considered to be the first modern novel. It was initially published in two volumes in 1605 and 1615.
TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1951, NBC broadcast a college football game between Duke University and the University of Pittsburgh. It was the first live sporting event to be televised nationwide.
TODAY'S QUOTE: "It is not the hand but the understanding of a man that may be said to write." -- Miguel de Cervantes, "Don Quixote"
TODAY'S NUMBER: 777.68 -- points lost by the Dow Jones Industrial Average on this day in 2008, following the bankruptcies of the financial services companies Lehman Brothers and Washington Mutual. It was the largest single-day point drop in history.
TODAY'S MOON: Between new moon (Sept. 28) and first quarter moon (Oct. 5).