On This Day in History Nov. 17, 2020

1558 – 25-year-old Elizabeth ascends to England’s throne after her half-sister, Mary I, dies. Elizabeth faces danger and opposition, but she is an activist queen who reigns for 45 years and sees the flowering of the English Renaissance with England becoming a major world power.

1777 – Congress submits the Articles of Confederation to the states for ratification after 16 months of debate. Bickering between Virginia and Maryland delays final ratification for nearly four years. The Articles are superseded by the U.S. Constitution in 1789.

1869 – The Suez Canal opens, connecting the Mediterranean and the Red seas. It is celebrated in an elaborate ceremony attended by French Empress Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III.

1958 – The Kingston Trio brings folk music to the top of the U.S. pop charts as “Tom Dooley” hits #1 on Billboard.