This Day in History

Posted: Friday, December 22, 2006

In Alaska

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• In 1919, the trading store of the Sons of Norway in Petersburg was destroyed by fire.

• In 1939, every house in Barrow was quarantined due to a measles epidemic. The population of Juneau was reported at 5,748. Fifteen cows arrived in Anchorage by air. They were the first of 45 cows being brought in by the Matanuska Valley Cooperative Association.

• In 1944, the first serious wreck on the Alaska Railroad occurred 45 miles from Fairbanks and sent 11 to the hospital.

In the nation

• In 1775, Esek Hopkins was appointed the commander in chief of the Continental Navy.

• In 1807, Congress passed the Embargo Act, barring all U.S. trade with foreign countries.

• In 1864, during the Civil War, Union Gen. William T. Sherman sent a message to President Lincoln: "I beg to present you as a Christmas gift the city of Savannah."

• In 1941, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill arrived in Washington for a wartime conference with President Franklin Roosevelt.

• In 1963, an official 30-day mourning period following the assassination of President Kennedy came to an end.

• In 1984, New York City resident Bernhard Goetz shot and wounded four youths on a Manhattan subway, claiming they were about to rob him.

• In 1996, eight workers were killed in an explosion at the Wyman Gordon Forgings metal-fabricating plant in northwest Houston.

• In 2005, Congress completed work on a one-month extension of the Patriot Act and sent it to President Bush. New York transit workers ended their three-day strike without a new contract.

In the world

• In 1808, Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 5 in C Minor and Symphony No. 6 in F Major had their world premieres in Vienna, Austria.

• In 1894, French army officer Alfred Dreyfus was convicted of treason in a court-martial that triggered worldwide charges of anti-Semitism. (Dreyfus was eventually vindicated.)

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