This Day in History

Posted: Sunday, January 21, 2007

In Alaska

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• In 1911, Mount Wrangell erupted, and Central Alaska was shaken by an earthquake.

• In 1959, Rep. Ralph Rivers, D-Alaska, proposed a bill to ban nearly all imports of Japanese salmon.

In the nation

• In 1861, Jefferson Davis of Mississippi and four other Southerners resigned from the U.S. Senate.

• In 1915, the first Kiwanis Club was founded, in Detroit.

• In 1942, Count Basie and His Orchestra recorded "One O'Clock Jump" in New York for Okeh Records.

• In 1950, former State Department official Alger Hiss, accused of being part of a Communist spy ring, was found guilty in New York of lying to a grand jury. (Hiss, who always maintained his innocence, served less than four years in prison.)

• In 1954, the first atomic submarine, the USS Nautilus, was launched at Groton, Conn. (however, the Nautilus did not make its first nuclear-powered run until nearly a year later).

• In 1977, President Carter pardoned almost all Vietnam War draft evaders.

• In 1982, convict-turned-author Jack Henry Abbott was found guilty in New York of first-degree manslaughter in the stabbing death of waiter Richard Adan in 1981. (Abbott was later sentenced to 15 years to life in prison; he committed suicide in 2002.)

• In 1997, Speaker Newt Gingrich was reprimanded and fined as the House voted for first time in history to discipline its leader for ethical misconduct. The Democratic National Committee announced it would no longer accept money from people or companies with foreign ties and would limit contributions from labor unions and wealthy benefactors.

• In 2006, rescuers in West Virginia found the bodies of two miners who'd disappeared after a conveyor belt caught fire deep inside a coal mine.

In the world

• In 1793, during the French Revolution, King Louis XVI, condemned for treason, was executed on the guillotine.

• In 1976, the supersonic Concorde jet was put into service by Britain and France.

• In 2006, a Red Cross-chartered helicopter that had been used for earthquake relief in Pakistan went missing (the wreckage of the copter and the bodies of the seven people on board were found in June 2006).

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