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In 1778, Captain James Cook sighted and named Mount Edgecumbe near present-day Sitka.
In 1927, the Alaska Legislature adopted the official flag of the territory of Alaska, eight stars of gold on a field of blue, created by 13-year old Benny Benson.
In 1959, the discovery of gambling in Fairbanks shocked the town as six men were arrested playing poker.
In 1963, a fire swept the Cordova business district, causing more than $1 million in damages.
In 1974, plans for the oil terminal at Valdez received the go ahead.
In 1984, President Ronald Reagan met Pope John Paul II in Fairbanks.
In the nation
In 1863, Confederate Gen. Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson was accidentally wounded by his own men at Chancellorsville, Va.; he died eight days later.
In 1890, the Oklahoma Territory was organized.
In 1932, Jack Benny's first radio show made its debut on the NBC Blue Network.
In 1957, Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy, the controversial Republican from Wisconsin, died at Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland.
In 1972, after serving 48 years as head of the FBI, J. Edgar Hoover died in Washington at age 77.
In the world
In 1519, artist Leonardo da Vinci died at Cloux, France.
In 1670, the Hudson Bay Company was chartered by England's King Charles II.
In 1945, the Soviet Union announced the fall of Berlin, and the Allies announced the surrender of Nazi troops in Italy and parts of Austria.
In 1993, Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic approved a plan to end the Bosnian war.