This Day in History

Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2007

In Alaska

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• In 1909, fire gutted the Golden Gate Hotel in Fairbanks.

• In 1954, Carr's, then Alaska's largest grocery store, opened its doors as did the rest of the J.C. Morris Trading Center at 14th and Gambell Streets in Anchorage. Six Anchorage prospectors reported Alaska's first uranium strike at Shirley Lake, 100 miles northwest of Anchorage.

• In 1975, the Yukon River Bridge was completed.

• In 1980, the cruise ship Princendam sank in the Gulf of Alaska.

• In 1986, the city of Seward was devastated by floods.

In the nation

• In 1776, the naval Battle of Valcour Island on Lake Champlain took place during the American Revolution. American forces led by Gen. Benedict Arnold suffered heavy losses, but managed to stall the British.

• In 1890, the Daughters of the American Revolution was founded in Washington, D.C.

• In 1932, the first American political telecast took place as the Democratic National Committee sponsored a program from a CBS television studio in New York.

• In 1975, "NBC Saturday Night" (later "Saturday Night Live") made its debut with guest host George Carlin.

• In 1997, President Clinton blamed pop culture for glamorizing illegal drug use as he heralded a new $195 million anti-drug ad campaign during his weekly radio address.

• In 2002, the Senate joined the House in approving, 77-23, use of America's military might against Iraq. Kenneth H. Bridges was shot to death at a gas station near Fredericksburg, Va., in the latest slaying by the Washington-area sniper. A chain reaction crash on a foggy interstate near Cedar Grove, Wis., killed ten people and injured 40 others.

• In 2006, a plane carrying New York Yankees pitcher Cory Lidle and flight instructor Tyler Stanger crashed into a high-rise apartment building in New York City, killing both men. The charge of treason was used for the first time in the U.S. war on terrorism, filed against Adam Yehiye Gadahn, who'd appeared in propaganda videos for al-Qaida.

In the world

• In 1942, the World War II Battle of Cape Esperance began in the Solomon Islands, resulting in an American victory over the Japanese.

• In 1958, the lunar probe Pioneer 1 was launched; it failed to go as far out as planned, fell back to Earth, and burned up in the atmosphere.

• In 1962, Pope John XXIII convened the first session of the Roman Catholic Church's Second Ecumenical Council, also known as Vatican II.

• In 1968, Apollo 7, the first manned Apollo mission, was launched with astronauts Wally Schirra, Donn Fulton Eisele and R. Walter Cunningham aboard.

• In 1984, space shuttle Challenger astronaut Kathryn Sullivan became the first American woman to walk in space.

• In 2002, former President Jimmy Carter won the Nobel Peace Prize. A teenager set off a homemade bomb inside a crowded mall in Vantaa, Finland, killing himself and six others.

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