US President Truman signed the Mutual Security Act. (1951) The provisions of the act, which stated that the US would provide military support to "free peoples" around the world, were directed primarily at communist countries. The act partially was in response to the second nuclear weapons test explosion in the Soviet Union on October 3.
The "October Crisis" occurred in Canada. (1970) The Front de Liberation du Quebec (FLQ) terrorist group kidnapped Pierre Laporte, the Vice-Premier and Minister of Labour in Quebec, after having already kidnapped British diplomat James Cross. The terrorists strangled Laporte to death eight days later, and freed Cross 60 days later. Canada instituted martial law temporarily to avoid having to take time to acquire warrants to capture and detain suspects. The terrorists were caught and tried for the crimes.
The first nuclear accident in world history took place. (1957) A fire broke out at the Windscale nuclear reactor in the United Kingdom, resulting in significant radioactive contamination. There were no reports, however, of any lasting ill health effects.
The "Outer Space Treaty" was enacted. (1967) The treaty established laws for outer space, including a ban on using nuclear weapons in space. It has been signed, but not necessarily ratified, by 125 countries.
US Vice President Spiro T. Agnew resigned amid allegations of income tax evasion. (1973) Vice President Agnew was also charged for accepting more than $100,000 US Dollars in bribes. He pled no contest to the income tax evasion charge and agreed to resign, becoming the first and only US Vice President to resign under criminal circumstances.
The Panama Canal opened with the touch of US President Woodrow Wilson's finger. (1913) President Wilson exploded 8 tons (about 7,257 kilograms) of dynamite at the Gamboa Dike at the Panama Canal by pressing a button in Washington D.C. Construction of the canal was completed with the explosion of the obstructing dike. The electric button sent a flash via cables which set off the dynamite at the dike.
The London Bridge opened in Lake Havasu City, Arizona. (1971) The London Bridge was originally located in London, England, crossing the River Thames. In 1967, it was taken down and sold to Lake Havasu founder Robert McCulloch. He had it reassembled and reinforced in the hopes of drawing tourism.
Nazis executed 800 Gypsy children at Auschwitz. (1944) More than one million Gypsies (or Romani) were killed by the Nazis during World War II. After the war, the German government denied them compensation as Holocaust victims, claiming they were not persecuted for their race, but for their criminal records.
The first sabotage of a commercial airliner in aviation history occurred. (1933) A United Airlines Boeing 247 exploded over Chesterton, Indiana, killing the seven people on board. The cause of the crash was determined to be a bomb. No suspects were ever identified.
The US Naval Academy opened. (1845) The first class of 50 students were taught by seven teachers. The school is the second-oldest military academy in the US.
The deadliest Atlantic hurricane in history killed almost 30,000 people. (1780) The hurricane swept through the Caribbean for six days with 200-mile-per-hour (about 320-kilometer-per-hour) winds.
The tuxedo jacket debuted in the US. (1886) Griswald Lorillard, inspired by European style, wore the fancy jacket to the "Autumn Ball" at the Tuxedo Club in Tuxedo, New York. It was an instant hit.