Today in History
Thursday June 20
451 – Germans and Romans beat Attila the Hun at Catalarinische Fields.
Attila, ruler of the Huns, from 434 until his death in March 453 was also the leader of a tribal empire consisting of the Huns, Ostrogoths, and Alans among others, in Central and Eastern Europe.
1632 – Britain grants 2nd Lord Baltimore rights to Chesapeake Bay area
1837 – Queen Victoria at 18 ascends British throne following death of uncle King William IV. She ruled for 63 years ending in 1901
1840 – Samuel Morse patents his telegraph
1867 – President Andrew Johnson announces purchase of Alaska
The purchase of Alaska in 1867 marked the end of Russian efforts to expand trade and settlements to the Pacific coast of North America, and became an important step in the United States rise as a great power in the Asia-Pacific region.
Beginning in 1725, when Russian Czar Peter the Great dispatched Vitus Bering to explore the Alaskan coast, Russia had a keen interest in this region, which was rich in natural resources and lightly inhabited.
As the United States expanded westward in the early 1800s, Americans soon found themselves in competition with Russian explorers and traders. St. Petersburg, however, lacked the financial resources to support major settlements or a military presence along the Pacific coast of North America and permanent Russian settlers in Alaska never numbered more than four hundred.
Defeat in the Crimean War further reduced Russian interest in this region.
Russia offered to sell Alaska to the United States in 1859, believing the United States would off-set the designs of Russia’s greatest rival in the Pacific, Great Britain. The looming U.S. Civil War delayed the sale, but after the war,
Secretary of State William Seward quickly took up a renewed Russian offer and on March 30, 1867, agreed to a proposal from Russian Minister in Washington, Edouard de Stoeckl, to purchase Alaska for $7.2 million. The Senate approved the treaty of purchase on April 9; President Andrew Johnson signed the treaty on May 28, and Alaska was formally transferred to the United States on October 18, 1867. This purchase ended Russia’s presence in North America and ensured U.S. access to the Pacific northern rim. (wiki)
1900 – Baron Von Ketteler, German Minister, decides to go to the Chinese authorities to demand more guards for European protection from Boxers and is killed by Boxers en route
1946 – NYC transit begins using PA system – Car # 744 on 8th Ave IND line
1949 – Central Intelligence Agency Act passes
1968 – Jim Hines becomes first person to run 100 meters in under 10 seconds
1977 – Oil enters Trans-Alaska pipeline exits 38 days later at Valdez
1994 – OJ Simpson arraigned on murder of Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman
236 BC – Scipio Africanus, Roman statesman and general of the Second Punic War (d. 183 BC)
1733 – Betty Washington, sister of George Washington
1905 – Lillian Hellman, American playwright (d. 1984)
1924 – Chet Atkins, Luttrell Tenn, guitarist (Me & My Guitar)
1931 – Olympia Dukakis, Lowell Mass, actress
1929 – William Faulkner (31) weds Estelle Oldham at College Hill Presbyterian Church outside Oxford, Mississippi
1987 – Johnny Carson marries fourth wife Alexis Mass
1776 – Benjamin Huntsman, English inventor and manufacturer (b. 1704)
1947 – Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel, gangster, shot dead in Beverly Hills Cal
1952 – Luigi Fagioli, Italian race car driver (b. 189
2005 – Jack Kilby, electrical engineer and Nobel laureate, dies at 81
2012 – LeRoy Neiman, American painter, dies at 91
Edited from various internet sources
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