Today is Wednesday, Sept. 8, the 251st day of 2021. There are 114 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Sept. 8, 1565, a Spanish expedition established the first permanent European settlement in North America at present-day St. Augustine, Florida.

On this date:

In 1504, Michelangelo’s towering marble statue of David was unveiled to the public in Florence, Italy.

In 1664, the Dutch surrendered New Amsterdam to the British, who renamed it New York.

In 1761, Britain’s King George III married Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz a few hours after meeting her for the first time.

In 1892, an early version of “The Pledge of Allegiance,” written by Francis Bellamy, appeared in “The Youth’s Companion.” It went: “I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

In 1900, Galveston, Texas, was struck by a hurricane that killed an estimated 8,000 people.

In 1935, Sen. Huey P. Long, a Louisiana Democrat, was shot and mortally wounded inside the Louisiana State Capitol; he died two days later. (The assailant was identified as Dr. Carl Weiss, who was gunned down by Long’s bodyguards.)

In 1941, the 900-day Siege of Leningrad by German forces began during World War II.

In 1943, during World War II, Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower announced Italy’s surrender; Nazi Germany denounced Italy’s decision as a cowardly act.

In 1964, public schools in Prince Edward County, Virginia, reopened after being closed for five years by officials attempting to prevent court-ordered racial desegregation.

In 1974, President Gerald R. Ford granted a “full, free, and absolute pardon” to former President Richard Nixon covering his entire term in office.

Today’s Birthdays: Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., is 80. Actor Alan Feinstein is 80. Actor Heather Thomas is 64. TV personality Brooke Burke is 50. Actor David Arquette is 50. TV-radio personality Kennedy is 49. Rock singer Pink is 42. Actor Jonathan Taylor Thomas is 40. Rapper Wiz Khalifa is 34.