This Day in History

Posted: Friday, September 22, 2006

In Alaska

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• In 1898, the Discovery claim was staked on Anvil Creek, touching off the Nome Gold Rush.

• In 1959, David L. Luce, a California official, was named administrative director of the newly formed Alaska court system. The Matanuska Valley Chamber of Commerce asked the state's Planning Commission to study the proposed relocation of the state capital.

• In 1969, the oldest Russian Church in Alaska, the Church of the Holy Resurrection, in Kodiak was rededicated.

In the nation

• In 1656, in Patuxent, Md., an all-female jury (the first of its kind in the colonies) heard the case of Judith Catchpole, who was accused of murdering her infant child. (The jury, which believed Catchpole's assertion that she hadn't even been pregnant, acquitted her.)

• In 1789, Congress authorized the office of Postmaster-General.

• In 1927, Gene Tunney successfully defended his heavyweight boxing title against Jack Dempsey in the famous "long-count" fight in Chicago.

• In 1938, the musical comedy revue "Hellzapoppin'," starring Ole Olsen and Chic Johnson, began a three-year run on Broadway.

• In 1950, Omar N. Bradley was promoted to the rank of five-star general, joining an elite group that included Dwight D. Eisenhower, Douglas MacArthur, George C. Marshall and Henry H. "Hap" Arnold.

• In 1964, the musical "Fiddler on the Roof" opened on Broadway, beginning a run of 3,242 performances.

• In 1975, Sara Jane Moore attempted to shoot President Ford outside a San Francisco hotel, but missed.

• In 1996, Reform Party nominee Ross Perot denounced the decision to exclude him from the presidential debates, telling NBC that Bob Dole had "poisoned the attitude" of millions of independent voters that Republicans desperately needed to win.

• In 2001, President Bush consulted at length with Russian President Vladimir Putin as the United States mustered a military assault on terrorism in the wake of Sept. 11. Miss Oregon Katie Harman was crowned Miss America 2002 in a patriotic telecast from Atlantic City, N.J.

• In 2005, Hurricane Rita, weakened to Category 4 status, closed on the Texas coast, sending hundreds of thousands of people fleeing on a frustratingly slow, bumper-to-bumper exodus. John Roberts' nomination as chief justice cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee on a bipartisan vote of 13-5.

In the world

• In 1776, Nathan Hale was hanged as a spy by the British during the Revolutionary War.

• In 1792, the first French Republic was proclaimed.

• In 1980, the Persian Gulf conflict between Iran and Iraq erupted into full-scale war.

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