This Day in History

Posted: Tuesday, November 16, 2004

In Alaska

• In 1904, the first winter mail from Fairbanks arrived at Valdez over the trail.

• In 1928, the Juneau High School Building was dedicated. It later became Capital Elementary School.

• In 1973, construction of the trans-Alaska oil pipeline was authorized by President Richard Nixon.

• In 1979, the first auction of barley harvested at Delta Junction (part of the "Barley Project") lasted 15 minutes with 140 tons going for $20,800. Anchorage developers with European financing announced plans to build a 400-room hotel, a 120,000 square-foot office building, and 129 condominiums on the site of the former Alaska-Juneau Gold Mill. Plans were scrapped for the hotel, but plans are being made to re-open the mine itself.

In the nation

• In 1776, British troops captured Fort Washington during the American Revolution.

• In 1864, Union Gen. William T. Sherman and his troops began their "March to the Sea" during the Civil War.

• In 1907, Oklahoma became the 46th state of the union.

• In 1959, the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical "The Sound of Music" opened on Broadway.

• In 1961, House Speaker Samuel T. Rayburn died in Bonham, Texas, having served as speaker since 1940 except for two terms.

• In 1973, Skylab III, carrying a crew of three astronauts, was launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., on an 84-day mission.

• In 1981, actor William Holden was found dead in his apartment in Santa Monica, Calif.; he was 63.

• In 1982, an agreement was announced in the 57th day of a strike by National Football League players.

• In 1994, the government reported consumer prices rose one-tenth of one percentage point in October. A federal judge issued a temporary restraining order prohibiting the state of California from implementing most provisions of Proposition 187, the voter-approved measure that would deny most public services to illegal immigrants.

• In 1999, Nathaniel Abraham, at 13 one of the youngest murder defendants in U.S. history, was convicted in Pontiac, Mich., of second-degree murder for shooting a stranger outside a convenience store with a rifle when he was 11. (Nathaniel was sentenced to juvenile detention, which means he will be released Jan. 13, 2007, when he turns 21.)

In the world

• In 1885, Canadian rebel Louis Riel was executed for high treason.

• In 1933, the United States and the Soviet Union established diplomatic relations.

• In 1994, President Clinton, ending a five-day trip to Asia, discussed human rights with Indonesian President Suharto.

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