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|1618||Sir Walter Raleigh is executed. After the death of Queen Elizabeth, Raleigh’s enemies spread rumors that he was opposed to the accession of King James.|
|1787||Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni opens in Prague.|
|1814||The Demologos, the first steam-powered warship, is launched in New York City.|
|1901||Leon Czolgosz is electrocuted for the assassination of US President William McKinley. Czolgosz, an anarchist, shot McKinley on September 6 during a public reception at the Temple of Music in Buffalo, N.Y. Despite early hopes of recovery, McKinley died September 14, in Buffalo, NY.|
|1927||Russian archaeologist Peter Kozloff apparently uncovers the tomb of Genghis Khan in the Gobi Desert, a claim still in dispute.|
|1929||Black Tuesday takes place–the most catastrophic day in stock market history, the herald of the Great Depression. 16 million shares are sold at declining prices. By mid-November $30 billion of the $80 billion worth of stocks listed in September will have been wiped out.|
|1945||The first ball-point pen is sold by Gimbell’s department store in New York for a price of $12.|
|1949||Alonzo G. Moron of the Virgin Islands becomes the first African-American president of Hampton Institute, Hampton, Virginia.|
|1952||French forces launch Operation Lorraine against Viet Minh supply bases in Indochina.|
|1964||Thieves steal a jewel collection–including the world’s largest sapphire, the 565-carat “Star of India,” and the 100-carat DeLong ruby–from the Museum of Natural History in New York. The thieves are caught and most of the jewels recovered.|
|1969||The U.S. Supreme Court orders immediate desegregation, superseding the previous “with all deliberate speed” ruling.|
|1969||The first computer-to-computer link is established; the link is accomplished through ARPANET, forerunner of the Internet.|
|1972||Palestinian guerrillas kill an airport employee and hijack a plane, carrying 27 passengers, to Cuba. They force West Germany to release 3 terrorists who were involved in the Munich Massacre.|
|1983||More than 500,000 people protest in The Hague, The Netherlands, against cruise missiles.|
|1986||The last stretch of Britain’s M25 motorway opens.|
|1998||South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission reports condemn both sides on the Apartheid issue for committing atrocities.|
|1998||John Glenn, at age 77, becomes the oldest person to go into outer space. He is part of the crew of Space Shuttle Discovery, STS-95.|
|1998||The deadliest Atlantic hurricane on record up to that time, Hurricane Mitch, makes landfall in Honduras (in 2005 Hurricane Wilma surpassed it); nearly 11,000 people die and approximately the same number go missing.|
|2004||For the first time, Osama bin Laden admits direct responsibility for the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the US; his comments are part of a video broadcast by the Al Jazeera network.|
|2008||Delta and Northwest airlines merge, forming the world’s largest airline.|
|2012||Hurricane Sandy devastates much of the East Coast of the US; nearly 300 die directly or indirectly from the storm.|
Several Haskell men who had been exposed to influenza went to Camp Funston, in central Kansas. Days later, on March 4, the first soldier known to have influenza reported ill. The huge Army base was training men for combat in World War I, and within two weeks 1,100 soldiers were admitted to the hospital, with thousands more sick in barracks. Thirty-eight died. Then, infected soldiers likely carried influenza from Funston to other Army camps in the States—24 of 36 large camps had outbreaks—sickening tens of thousands, before carrying the disease overseas. Meanwhile, the disease spread into U.S. civilian communities.The flu ravaged Europe, then abated in July, leading to a false sense that it was over. When it roared back, it was deadlier than ever. The disease was exacerbated in the US, where government officials refused to acknowledge it, fearing it would hinder the war effort. The lack of information only fueled panic. Smithsonian magazine tells us about the spread of the 1918 flu pandemic.
The influenza virus mutates rapidly, changing enough that the human immune system has difficulty recognizing and attacking it even from one season to the next. A pandemic occurs when an entirely new and virulent influenza virus, which the immune system has not previously seen, enters the population and spreads worldwide. Ordinary seasonal influenza viruses normally bind only to cells in the upper respiratory tract—the nose and throat—which is why they transmit easily. The 1918 pandemic virus infected cells in the upper respiratory tract, transmitting easily, but also deep in the lungs, damaging tissue and often leading to viral as well as bacterial pneumonias.