Comedian Bill Cosby launches The Cosby Show on NBC Sept. 20, 1984. “Behind the scenes,” writes commentator Ta-Nehisi Coates, “Cosby hired the Harvard psychiatrist Alvin Poussaint to make sure that the show never trafficked in stereotypes and that it depicted blacks in a dignified light.” Other TV premieres this week: Peyton Place, Flipper,The Addams Family and Bewitched — all began in 1964.
In the tennis “Battle of the Sexes,” Bobby Riggs, 55, a champion in the 1940s, loses his challenge to Billie Jean King, in straight sets on Sept. 20, 1973.
Xerox introduces the first successful plain paper photocopier to the public on live television Sept. 16, 1959. By 1965, a photocopy is a “xerox.”
On Sept. 17, 1978, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat sign the Camp David Accords, negotiated in secret with the participation of President Jimmy Carter. The agreements lead to peace between Israel and Egypt but not between Israel and the Palestinian territories.
A bomb planted by a white supremacist offshoot of the Ku Klux Klan explodes Sunday morning at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala., on Sept. 15, 1963, killing four young girls and leading to violence that results in the deaths of two black teenagers.
President Gerald R. Ford announces a conditional amnesty for Vietnam War deserters and draft evaders on Sept. 16, 1974. Among the conditions: a pledge of their allegiance to the United States and two years of public service.
Goldfinger, the third film in the James Bond series, earns some $125 million worldwide after its world premiere on Sept. 17, 1964.
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Images — Bill Cosby: Probookings.com; Camp David: U.S. Government Archives via Wikipedia; Goldfinger: Everett Collection
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