This Day in History

Posted: Wednesday, December 27, 2006

In Alaska

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• In 1947, a B-29 bomber missing from Ladd Field at Fairbanks for four days was sighted on the northern Seward Peninsula. Six out of 11 survived the crash.

• In 1955, the eight crewmen of an Air Force C-119 "Flying Boxcar" escaped death as the aircraft crashed on takeoff at the Sparrevohn Radar Base in Western Alaska.

In the nation

• In 1927, the musical play "Show Boat," with music by Jerome Kern and libretto by Oscar Hammerstein II, opened at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York.

• In 1932, Radio City Music Hall opened in New York.

• In 2001, President Bush extended permanent normal trade status to China.

• In 2005, grass fires burned in drought-stricken Texas and Oklahoma. In three days, nearly 200 homes were lost and the fires caused at least four deaths.

In the world

• In 1831, naturalist Charles Darwin set out on a round-the-world voyage aboard the HMS Beagle. (Darwin's discoveries during the almost five-year-long journey helped to form the basis of his theories on natural selection and evolution.)

• In 1904, James Barrie's play "Peter Pan: The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up" opened at the Duke of York's Theater in London.

• In 1945, 28 nations signed an agreement creating the World Bank.

• In 1949, Queen Juliana of the Netherlands signed an act granting sovereignty to Indonesia after more than three centuries of Dutch rule.

• In 1968, Apollo 8 and its three astronauts made a safe, nighttime splashdown in the Pacific.

• In 1979, Soviet forces seized control of Afghanistan. President Hafizullah Amin, who was overthrown and executed, was replaced by Babrak Karmal.

• In 1985, Palestinian guerrillas opened fire inside the Rome and Vienna airports; a total of 20 people were killed, including five of the attackers, who were slain by police and security personnel.

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