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This Day in History: October 8


1645 – Jeanne Mance opened the Hôtel-Dieu de Montréal, the first lay hospital in North America.

1860 – Telegraph line between Los Angeles and San Francisco opens.

1862 – American Civil War: Battle of Perryville: Union forces under General Don Carlos Buell halt theConfederate invasion of Kentucky by defeating troops led by General Braxton Bragg at Perryville, Kentucky.

1871 – Four major fires break out on the shores of Lake Michigan in Chicago, Peshtigo, Wisconsin, Holland, Michigan, and Manistee, Michigan including the Great Chicago Fire, and the much deadlier Peshtigo Fire.

1918 – World War I: In the Argonne Forest in France, United States Corporal Alvin C. York kills 28 German soldiers and captures 132, for which he is awarded the Medal of Honor.

1921 – KDKA in Pittsburgh's Forbes Field conducts the first live broadcast of a football game.

1939 – World War II: Germany annexes Western Poland.

1941 – World War II: In their invasion of the Soviet Union, Germany reaches the Sea of Azov with the capture of Mariupol.

1944 – World War II: The Battle of Crucifix Hill occurs just outside Aachen. Capt. Bobbie Brown receives a Medal of Honor for his heroics in this battle.

1956 – New York Yankees's Don Larsen pitched the only perfect game in a World Series.

1968 – Vietnam War: Operation Sealords: United States and South Vietnamese forces launch a new operation in the Mekong Delta.

1969 – The opening rally of the Days of Rage occurs, organized by the Weather Underground in Chicago.

1970 – Vietnam War: In Paris, a Communist delegation rejects US President Richard Nixon's October 7 peace proposal as "a manoeuvre to deceive world opinion".

1974 – Franklin National Bank collapses due to fraud and mismanagement; at the time it is the largest bank failure in the history of the United States.

1982 – Cats opens on Broadway and runs for nearly 18 years before closing on September 10, 2000.

2001 – U.S. President George W. Bush announces the establishment of the Office of Homeland Security.


1834 – Walter Kittredge, American violinist and composer (d. 1905)

1889 – Collett E. Woolman, American businessman, co-founded Delta Air Lines (d. 1966)

1910 – Gus Hall, American soldier and politician (d. 2000)

1930 – Pepper Adams, American saxophonist and composer (The Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra) (d. 1986)

1930 – Faith Ringgold, American painter and activist

1936 – Rona Barrett, American journalist and businesswoman

1943 – Chevy Chase, American comedian, actor, and screenwriter

1943 – R. L. Stine, American author, screenwriter, and producer

1949 – Sigourney Weaver, American actress and producer

1985 – Bruno Mars, American singer-songwriter, producer, and actor


1793 – John Hancock, American merchant and politician, 1st Governor of Massachusetts (b. 1737)

1869 – Franklin Pierce, American general, lawyer, and politician, 14th President of the United States (b. 1804)

1944 – Wendell Willkie, American captain, lawyer, and politician (b. 1892)

1978 – Bertha Parker Pallan, American archaeologist (b. 1907)

2011 – Al Davis, American football player, coach, and manager (b. 1929)

2011 – Roger Williams, American pianist (b. 1924)

2013 – Rod Grams, American journalist and politician (b. 1948)

2015 – Paul Prudhomme, American chef and author (b. 1940)