This Day in History

Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2005

In Alaska

• In 1867, the United States formally took possession of the territory of Alaska with the raising of the flag at New Archangel, now Sitka.

• In 1880, the 160-acre townsite of Harrisburgh was staked out by founders Richard Harris and Joe Juneau. The town's name was changed to Juneau in December of 1881.

• In 1898, the Cape Nome Mining District was organized at Anvil Creek.

• In 1946, the first mass air movement of Naval dependents to Alaska, nicknamed the "Baby Special," took 11 Navy wives and 10 children to their families in Dutch Harbor and Adak.

• In 1949, the Prospector Memorial statue in front of the Sitka Pioneer Home was unveiled and dedicated. It was sculpted by Victor Alonzo Lewis. The model was "Skagway Bill" Fonda.

• In 1964, two Sitka landmarks, St. Michael's Cathedral and the Russian Mission Building, were officially recognized as National Historic Landmarks.

In the nation

• In 1767, the boundary between Maryland and Pennsylvania, the Mason-Dixon line, was agreed upon.

• In 1892, the first long-distance telephone line between Chicago and New York was formally opened.

• In 1898, the American flag was raised in Puerto Rico shortly before Spain formally relinquished control of the island to the United States.

• In 1968, the U.S. Olympic Committee suspended Tommie Smith and John Carlos for giving a "black power" salute as a protest during a victory ceremony in Mexico City.

• In 1969, the federal government banned artificial sweeteners known as cyclamates because of evidence they caused cancer in laboratory rats.

• In 1995, President Clinton, facing political fallout for telling financial contributors that "I raised your taxes too much," said he had no regrets about the tax increase package he'd signed into law in 1993.

• In 2000, President Clinton honored the 17 sailors killed in a suicide bomb attack against the USS Cole as he attended a ceremony at the Norfolk Naval Station in Virginia.

In the world

• In 1685, King Louis XIV of France revoked the Edict of Nantes, which had established legal toleration of France's Protestant population, the Huguenots.

• In 1944, Soviet troops invaded Czechoslovakia during World War II.

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