This Day in History

Posted: Friday, April 11, 2003

In Alaska

• In 1917, the Marconi Wireless Station in Juneau was taken over by the Navy as a war measure.

• In 1975, Joann Osterud was hired as Alaska Airlines first female pilot.

• In 1979, the Alaska Su-preme Court ruled the Bierne Homestead Initiative unconstitutional. Authored by Anchorage Representative Mike Bierne, the measure would have transferred up to 30 million acres of state land into private ownership.

In the nation

• In 1898, President McKinley asked Congress for a declaration of war against Spain.

• In 1899, the treaty ending the Spanish-American War was declared in effect.

• In 1921, Iowa became the first state to impose a cigarette tax.

• In 1951, President Truman relieved Gen. Douglas Mac-Arthur of his commands in the Far East.

• In 1968, President Lyndon Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act of 1968, a week after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.

• In 1970, Apollo 13 blasted off on its ill-fated mission to the moon. (The astronauts managed to return safely).

• In 1993, a deadly riot erupted at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville; one guard and nine inmates were killed during the eleven-day siege.

• In 2002, U.S. Rep. James A. Traficant Jr., D-Ohio, was convicted of taking bribes and kickbacks from businessmen and his own staff. (Traficant was later expelled from Congress and sentenced to eight years in prison.) The House responded to the Enron collapse by voting to add more worker protections to pension laws.

In the world

• In 1689, William III and Mary II were crowned as joint sovereigns of Britain.

• In 1814, Napoleon Bonaparte abdicated as emperor of France and was banished to the island of Elba.

• In 1945, during World War II, American soldiers liberated the notorious Nazi concentration camp Buchenwald in Germany.

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