This Day in History

Posted: Tuesday, April 08, 2003

In Alaska

• In 1881, the Harrisburgh post office was established. It was renamed Juneau the following January.

• In 1944, the Alaska-Juneau gold mine closed down at midnight, virtually ending lode mining in the area. It was closed because of a government order mandating a wage increase.

• In 1957, Mike Stepovich took office as the ninth and last Governor of the Territory of Alaska, appointed by President Dwight Eisenhower.

• In 1958, Ripple Rock in Seymour Narrows was destroyed by the then-largest man-made nonatomic explosion in history. Two and a half years in preparation, $3 million, and nearly 3 million pounds of explosive removed the worst menace to navigation in the 850-mile Inside Passage.

In the nation

• In 1513, explorer Juan Ponce de Leon claimed Florida for Spain.

• In 1974, Hank Aaron of the Atlanta Braves hit his 715th career home run in a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, breaking Babe Ruth's record.

• In 1994, Kurt Cobain, singer and guitarist for the grunge band Nirvana, was found dead in Seattle from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound; he was 27.

In the world

• In 1973, artist Pablo Picasso died at his home near Mougins, France, at age 91.

• In 1946, the League of Nations assembled in Geneva for the last time.

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