Nov. 11 (UPI) -- On this date in history:
In 1831, Nat Turner, who led fellow slaves on a bloody uprising in Virginia, was hanged. Turner, an educated minister, believed he was chosen by God to lead people out of slavery.
In 1889, Washington was admitted to the union as the 42nd state.
In 1918, World War I ended with the signing of the Armistice of November 11, 1918, in a railroad car in a forest in France.
In 1921, U.S. President Warren Harding dedicated the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. It is commonly called the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Many countries have similarly named memorials.
In 1938, Kate Smith first performed "God Bless America" on her weekly radio show. The song had been written for her by Irving Berlin. Smith, whose song helped sell millions of dollars in war bombs, received the Medal of Freedom in 1982.
In 1982, the space shuttle Columbia blasted off on the first commercial space mission.
In 1987, U.S. President Ronald Reagan nominated Judge Anthony Kennedy to the U.S. Supreme Court after Judge Douglas Ginsburg withdrew his nomination and Judge Robert Bork was rejected by the Senate. Kennedy joined the court in February 1988.
In 1989, an estimated 1 million East Germans poured into reopened West Germany for a day of celebration, visiting and shopping. Most returned home.
In 1992, the Church of England broke the tradition of a male-only clergy when it voted to allow the ordination of women as priests.
In 2000, a fire on a cable car taking skiers up an Austrian mountain caught fire, killing 155 people. Twelve people survived the blaze, which erupted while the car was inside a tunnel.
In 2004, Yasser Arafat, the longtime Palestinian leader whose career ranged from terrorist to diplomat, a key figure in the forever smoldering Middle East, died in a Paris hospital after several days in a coma. He was 75.
In 2005, Harvard-educated Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, dubbed the "Iron Lady," claimed electoral victory and became the first woman president of Liberia.
In 2018, the Democratic Republic of Congo Health Ministry announced more than 200 people died from the Ebola virus since August, making it the worst outbreak in the country's history.