This Day in History

Posted: Friday, August 27, 2004

In Alaska

• In 1969, the world's largest authentic totem pole, a 132-foot shaft of Alaska red cedar, was dedicated at Port Chilkoot, near Haines.

• In 1970, bankruptcy proceedings threatened to put the city of Kenai in fear of a winter breakdown of its electrical facilities.

• In 1974, Alaskans voted to move the state capital from Juneau to an as-yet-to-be-selected location. The site eventually selected was Willow, north of Anchorage. The vote to fund moving the capital failed in 1982.

In the nation

• In 1892, fire seriously damaged New York's original Metropolitan Opera House.

• In 1894, Congress passed the Wilson-Gorman Tariff Act, which contained a provision for a graduated income tax that was later struck down by the Supreme Court.

• In 1908, Lyndon B. Johnson, the 36th president of the United States, was born near Stonewall, Texas.

• In 1962, the United States launched the Mariner II space probe, which flew past Venus the following December.

• In 1994, the State Department said the United States and Cuba had agreed to resume talks on Cuban migration with the hope of stemming the flow of refugees headed toward Florida.

• In 1999, the Federal Communications Commission announced new government wiretapping rules intended to help law enforcement authorities keep pace with advances in phone technology. However, a federal appeals court later threw out some of the new rules, citing privacy concerns.

• In 2003, a granite monument of the Ten Commandments, one that became a lightning rod in a legal storm over church and state, was wheeled from the rotunda of the Alabama Supreme Court building as protesters knelt, prayed and chanted, "Put it back!"

In the world

• In 1770, German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel was born in Stuttgart.

• In 1883, the island volcano Krakatoa blew up. The resulting tidal waves in Indonesia's Sunda Strait claimed some 36,000 lives in Java and Sumatra.

• In 1928, the Kellogg-Briand Pact was signed in Paris, outlawing war and providing for the peaceful settlement of disputes.

• In 1945, American troops began landing in Japan following the surrender of the Japanese government in World War II.

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