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On October 17th...
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1758 Nathaniel Macon, U.S. Congressman, was born.
1777 British General John Burgoyne surrendered his army at Saratoga.
1781 British General Charles Cornwallis was defeated at Yorktown.
1829 The Delaware River & Chesapeake Bay Canal formally opened.
1849 Composer Frederic Chopin died.
1855 The Bessemer steelmaking process was patented.
1868 The Constitution of Grand Duchy of Luxembourg went into effect.
1888 Thomas Edison filed a preliminary patent for what he eventually called the Kinetoscope.
1902 Actress Irene Ryan was born.
1906 U.S. Air Force General William Fulton McKee was born.
1907 The first commercial wireless telegraph was sent over the Atlantic Ocean.
1910 Julia Ward Howe, author of Battle Hymn of the Republic, died.
1912 Bulgaria, Greece & Serbia
declared war on Turkey.
1915 Playwright Arthur Miller was born.
1918 Actress Rita Hayworth was born.
1919 The Radio Corporation of America (RCA) was created.
1920 Actor Montgomery Clift was born.
1921 Actor Tom Poston was born.
1931 Al Capone was found guilty of income tax evasion.
1933 Albert Einstein and his wife, fleeing Nazi persecution, arrived in the United States.
1938 Daredevil Evel Knievel was born.
1941 Musician Jim Seals was born.
1942 Singer Gary Puckett was born.
1948 Actress Margot Kidder was born.
1950 Actor Howard E. Rollins, Jr. was born.
1955 Actor Sam Bottoms was born.
1957 Actor Vincent Van Patten was born.
1958 Singer Alan Jackson was born.
1962 Cartoonist Mike Judge was born.
1967 The musical Hair premiered on Broadway.
1970 Henri Charrière, author of
Papillon, was pardoned by the French government for the
murder which led to his imprisonment in 1933.
1978 President Jimmy Carter signed a bill restoring Jefferson Davis's citizenship.
1979 The U.S. Department of Education
1987 The first ever indoor World Series game was played, in the Minnesota Metrodome.
1989 An earthquake registering 6.9 on the Richter scale hit the San Francisco Bay area.
1991 Singer Tennessee Ernie Ford died.
1994 A world record was set by British taxi driver Jeremy Levine after completing a round-trip journey to Cape Town, South Africa of 26,691 miles.
2003 Taipei 101 became the world's tallest highrise building at 1,671 feet after the pinnacle was fitted on the roof.
2007 Comedian Joey Bishop died.
2008 Singer Levi Stubbs died.
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This page was last updated on October 17, 2018.