This Day in History

Posted: Tuesday, August 08, 2006

In Alaska

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• In 1939, President Roosevelt signed a bill authorizing the Department of the Interior to sell timber and mineral products from lands in Alaska reserved for educational purposes.

• In 1947, President Truman signed the Tongass Timber Bill.

• In 1949, the U.S. Department of the Interior ruled the federal government had control of Alaska's tidelands as long as Alaska remained a territory.

• In 1959, two U.S. Air Force F-100 jet planes landed at Eielson Air Force Base, after having come 5,400 miles non-stop from England, in the first flight by jets over the North Pole. Just prior to landing, a moose had to be shoved off the runway.

• In 1962, the Diocese of Fairbanks was established.

• In 1979, the Alaska Legislature adjourned its special session after approving pay raises for state employees.

In the nation

• In 1876, Thomas A. Edison received a patent for the forerunner to the mimeograph.

• In 1942, six convicted Nazi saboteurs who'd landed in the U.S. were executed in Washington, D.C.; two others received life imprisonment.

• In 1945, President Truman signed the United Nations Charter.

• In 1968, Richard M. Nixon was nominated for president at the Republican national convention in Miami Beach, Fla.

• In 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew branded as "damned lies" reports he had taken kickbacks from government contracts in Maryland, and vowed not to resign - which he eventually did.

• In 1974, President Nixon announced he would resign following damaging new revelations in the Watergate scandal.

• In 1978, the U.S. launched Pioneer Venus 2, which carried scientific probes to study the atmosphere of Venus.

• In 1996, President Clinton belittled Bob Dole's tax plan, vowing to oppose tax cuts that he said the country couldn't afford. Republican sources, meanwhile, said Dole was seriously considering choosing Jack Kemp for his running mate.

• In 2005, President Bush signed a bill to give billions in tax breaks to encourage homegrown energy production but acknowledged it wouldn't quickly reduce high gasoline prices or the nation's dependence on foreign oil.

In the world

• In 1945, the Soviet Union declared war against Japan during World War II.

• In 1963, Britain's Great Train Robbery took place as thieves made off with 2.6 million pounds in banknotes.

• In 1991, the slain bodies of former Iranian Prime Minister Shahpour Bakhtiar and his chief of staff were found in Bakhtiar's residence outside Paris.

• In 1994, Israel and Jordan opened the first road link between the two once-warring countries.

• In 2001, Mohammad Khatami was sworn in for a second term as Iran's president.

• In 2005, Iran resumed work at a uranium conversion facility after suspending nuclear work for nine months to avoid U.N. sanctions.


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