This Day in History

Posted: Thursday, June 26, 2003

In Alaska

• In 1942, an army post was activated at Bethel with seven officers and 305 enlisted men.

• In 1968, the $7 million Alaska state ferry Wickersham began its inaugural cruise from Prince Rupert, British Columbia, bound for Haines.

• In 1969, the Atomic Energy Commission moved 250 sea otters from Amchitka Island in preparation for a one-megaton nuclear test.

In the nation

• In 1870, the first section of the Atlantic City, N.J., Boardwalk was opened to the public.

• In 1900, a commission that included Dr. Walter Reed began the fight against the deadly disease yellow fever.

• In 1925, Charlie Chaplin's classic comedy, "The Gold Rush," premiered at Grauman's Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood.

• In 1945, the charter of the United Nations was signed by 50 countries in San Francisco.

• In 1993, President Clinton announced the United States had launched missiles against Iraqi targets because of "compelling evidence" Iraq had plotted to assassinate former President Bush.

• In 1998, the Supreme Court issued a landmark sexual harassment ruling, putting employers on notice that they can be held responsible for supervisors' misconduct even if they knew nothing about it.

• In 2002, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declared that reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools was unconstitutional because of the words "under God" inserted by Congress in 1954. WorldCom Inc., the nation's No. 2 long-distance company, slid toward bankruptcy after disclosing what could be the biggest case of crooked accounting in U.S. history.

In the world

• In 1917, the first troops of the American Expeditionary Force arrived in France during World War I.

• In 1948, the Berlin Airlift began in earnest after the Soviet Union cut off land and water routes to the isolated western sector of Berlin.

• In 1959, President Eisenhower joined Britain's Queen Elizabeth II in ceremonies officially opening the St. Lawrence Seaway.

• In 2002, the Group of Eight nations, meeting in Kananaskis, Alberta, Canada, announced that Russia would be made a full-fledged member of the elite group. Chinese basketball star Yao Ming was selected first overall by the Houston Rockets in the NBA draft.



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