This Day in History

Posted: Monday, February 19, 2007

In Alaska

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• In 1915, the ore reduction mills of the Alaska Gastineau Mining Co. at Thane, near Juneau, started operating.

• In 1939, picketing members of the Masters, Mates, and Pilots Union allowed the Baranof to sail from Seattle to carry mail, fresh food and passengers to Alaska.

• In 1968, the tanker Rebecca was seized by State Troopers north of Kenai for pumping ballast that led to a 200-300 yard oil slick.

• In 1985, unidentified amber lights appeared in the western sky above Anchorage at about 9 p.m. Spectators and officials could not explain the source of the lights.

In the nation

• In 1803, Congress voted to accept Ohio's borders and constitution.

• In 1807, former Vice President Aaron Burr, accused of treason, was arrested in the Mississippi Territory, in present-day Alabama. (Burr was acquitted at trial.)

• In 1846, the Texas state government was formally installed in Austin, with J. Pinckney Henderson taking the oath of office as governor.

• In 1878, Thomas Edison received a U.S. patent for "an improvement in phonograph or speaking machines."

• In 1881, Kansas prohibited the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages.

• In 1942, President Roosevelt signed an executive order giving the military the authority to relocate and intern Japanese-Americans as well as Japanese nationals living in the United States.

• In 1986, the U.S. Senate approved an international treaty outlawing genocide, 37 years after the pact first had been submitted for ratification.

• In 1997, Detroit's daily newspapers accepted a back-to-work offer from employees who'd been on strike for 19 months, but the strikers charged the conditions for return amounted to a lockout.

• In 2002, in Salt Lake City, a win by bobsledders Jill Bakken and Vonetta Flowers gave the United States 21 medals in the Winter Games; Flowers became the first black athlete ever to strike gold at the Winter Olympics.

• In 2006, Jimmie Johnson won the Daytona 500. The East rallied from 21 points down for a 122-120 victory over the West in the NBA All-Star Game.

In the world

• In 1942, Japanese warplanes, attacking in two waves, raided the Australian city of Darwin; at least 243 people were killed.

• In 1945, during World War II, some 30,000 U.S. Marines began landing on Iwo Jima, where they commenced a month-long battle to seize control of the island from Japanese forces.

• In 1959, an agreement was signed by Britain, Turkey and Greece granting Cyprus its independence.

• In 2002, President Bush opened a two-day visit to South Korea. Peru's justice minister ruled out a presidential pardon for Lori Berenson after the Supreme Court confirmed the American woman's 20-year sentence for aiding leftist rebels.

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