This Day in History

Posted: Monday, October 17, 2005

In Alaska

• In 1873, Thomas C. Riggs Jr., who became the ninth governor of Alaska, was born in Maryland.

• In 1904, the Alaska Weekly Transcript began publication in Juneau.

• In 1964, Alaska Highway Commissioner D.A. McKinnon announced that a 1-year study would begin to find the best route for a proposed Nome-to-Fairbanks road.

• In 1979, for the fifth time, The Petroleum Club of Anchorage, consisting of male oil industry executives, voted to bar women oil executives from membership.

In the nation

• In 1919, the Radio Corporation of America was created.

• In 1931, mobster Al Capone was convicted of income tax evasion and sentenced to 11 years in prison. He was released in 1939.

• In 1933, Albert Einstein arrived in the United States as a refugee from Nazi Germany.

• In 1941, the U.S. destroyer Kearney was torpedoed by a German submarine off the coast of Iceland; 11 people died.

• In 1989, an earthquake measuring 7.1 on the Richter scale struck northern California, killing 67 people and causing $7 billion worth of damage.

• In 1995, President Clinton told wealthy contributors at a Houston fund-raiser that "you think I raised your taxes too much. It might surprise you to know that I think I raised them too much, too" - a statement that drew criticism from both Republicans and Democrats.

In the world

• In 1945, Col. Juan Peron staged a coup, becoming absolute ruler of Argentina.

• In 1973, Arab oil-producing nations announced they would begin cutting back on oil exports to Western nations and Japan; the result was a total embargo that lasted until March 1974.

• In 1977, West German commandos stormed a hijacked Lufthansa jetliner on the ground in Mogadishu, Somalia, freeing all 86 hostages and killing three of the four hijackers.

• In 1979, Mother Teresa of India was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

• In 1995, a bomb exploded aboard a Paris subway car, wounding 29 people.

• In 2000, ending an emergency summit in Egypt, Israeli and Palestinian leaders agreed to publicly urge an end to a burst of bloody conflict and to consult within two weeks on restarting the ravaged Mideast peace process.

• In 2004, Jordan's military prosecutor indicted Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, one of the most wanted insurgents in Iraq, and 12 suspected Muslim militants for an alleged al-Qaida-linked plot to attack the U.S. Embassy in Amman and Jordanian government targets.

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