This Day in History

Posted: Tuesday, July 08, 2008

In Alaska, in the Nation and the World

In Alaska

• In 1898, Jefferson Randolph "Soapy" Smith, gambler and character of ill-repute, was shot and killed in Skagway.

• In 1923, President Warren G. Harding arrived in Ketchikan on his Alaska tour.

• In 1937, radio telephone service between Juneau and the Lower 48 was inaugurated by the Alaska Communications System.

• In 1949, the Federal Communications Commission granted a "license to broadcast" to the Alaska Broadcasting Company to operate radio station KIFW-AM in Sitka at 1,230 KHz. Photographer Ansel Adams passed through Juneau following a photographic expedition to Glacier Bay.

• In 1963, groundbreaking ceremonies were held at the site of the Federal Building in Juneau.

In the nation

• In 1908, businessman and philanthropist Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller, a liberal Republican who served as governor of New York and then as vice president of the United States, was born in Bar Harbor, Maine.

• In 1663, King Charles II of England granted a Royal Charter to Rhode Island.

• In 1776, Col. John Nixon gave the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence, in Philadelphia.

• In 1889, The Wall Street Journal was first published.

• In 1907, Florenz Ziegfeld staged his first "Follies," on the roof of the New York Theater.

• In 1919, President Wilson received a tumultuous welcome in New York City after his return from the Versailles Peace Conference in France.

• In 1947, demolition work began in New York City to make way for the new permanent headquarters of the United Nations.

• In 1950, President Truman named Gen. Douglas MacArthur commander-in-chief of United Nations forces in Korea.

• In 1998, a federal bankruptcy judge announced a tentative settlement under which an estimated 170,000 women who said silicone breast implants had made them sick would get $3.2 billion from Dow Corning Corp.

• In 2003, a factory worker opened fire at a Lockheed Martin plant in Meridian, Miss., leaving five dead before he committed suicide.

In the world

• In 1853, an expedition led by Commodore Matthew Perry arrived in Yedo Bay, Japan, on a mission to seek diplomatic and trade relations with the Japanese.

• In 1958, President Eisenhower began a visit to Canada, where he conferred with Prime Minister John Diefenbaker and addressed the Canadian Parliament.

• In 1994, Kim Il Sung, North Korea's communist leader since 1948, died at age 82.

• In 2003, in Senegal at the start of a five-nation tour of Africa, President Bush called American slavery one of history's greatest crimes as he stood at the very spot where hundreds of thousands of Africans had been bought and sold like cargo. Twenty-nine-year-old Iranian twins joined at the head died following surgery in Singapore to separate them. A Sudanese Boeing 737 crashed on the northeastern Red Sea coast, killing 116 people.

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