Showing posts from March, 2012

On This Day: United States Purchases Alaska

The signing of the Alaska Treaty of Cessation on March 30, 1867. L-R: Robert S. Chew, Secretary of State William H. Seward , William Hunter, Mr. Bodisco, Russian Ambassador Baron de Stoeckl, Charles Sumner and Frederick W. Seward . On This Day: United States Purchases Alaska March 30, 2011 05:00 AM by findingDulcinea Staff On March 30, 1867, U.S. Secretary of State William H. Seward paid Russia $7.2 million for the 586,412-square mile territory of Alaska. Seward Buys Alaska From Russia Russia set up a   presence in Alaska in the 18th century, when Danish explorer Vitus Bering , with the backing of Russian Czar Peter the Great , surveyed the region. The territory was wild and inhospitable, but it was rich in natural resources, attracting Russian explorers and traders. Russia did not  have the money to establish permanent settlements , however, and its position was further weakened by their defeat in the Crimean War. By the mid-19th century, it was looking to sell off the land.

March 30, 1848: Niagara Falls Runs Dry

1848:  Niagara Falls stops. No water flows over the great cataract for 30 or 40 hours. People freak out. The falls were already a tourist attraction by 1848, and villages had grown up on both the U.S. and Canadian sides of the river to accommodate the sightseeing throngs. Residents also built waterwheels to harness the Niagara River ’s power to run mills and drive machinery in factories. An American farmer out for a stroll shortly before midnight on March 29 was the first to notice something. Actually, he noticed the absence of something: the thundering roar of the falls. When he went to the river’s edge, he saw hardly any water. Came the dawn of March 30, people awoke to an unaccustomed silence. The mighty Niagara was a mere trickle.  Mills and factories had to shut down , because the waterwheels had stopped. The bed of the river was exposed. Fish died. Turtles floundered about. Brave — or foolish — people walked on the river bottom, picking up exposed guns, bayonets and tomahawks

On This Day: Nuclear Meltdown Occurs at Three Mile Island

Carolyn Kaster/AP The Three Mile Island nuclear power plant pictured in 2005. March 28, 2011 06:00 AM by findingDulcinea Staff On March 28, 1979, the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant experienced a partial meltdown. It was the worst-ever commercial nuclear accident in U.S. history. Meltdown in Pennsylvania The Unit Two reactor at the Three Mile Island nuclear facility near near Middletown, Pa.,  had a unstable operating history . Even during construction there were delays, and unscheduled shutdowns persisted after the reactor began operating in 1978. Operators compensated for these deficiencies by falsifying data to avoid reporting to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission . At about 4:00 a.m. on March 28, 1979, a pump failure in a secondary (non-nuclear) system of the reactor stopped steam generators from removing heat from the unit , increasing the pressure in the primary (nuclear) portion.  A relief valve was opened to release the pressure, but the

On This Day: 583 Killed As 747s Collide On Tenerife Runway

Associated Press The remains of the KLM 747 at Los Rodeos Airport , Santa Cruz de Tenrife, March 27, 1977. On This Day: 583 Killed as 747s Collide on Tenerife Runway March 27, 2011 06:00 AM by findingDulcinea Staff On March 27, 1977, two 747 airliners collided on a runway in the Canary Island of Tenerife, killing 583 people, more than any plane crash in history. Deadly Plane Crash Occurs on Tenerife Pan Am Flight 1736 from Los Angeles via New York and KLM Flight 4805 from Amsterdam had been scheduled to land at Las Palmas , the capital of the Canary Islands, on the afternoon of March 27, 1977. However, Canary independence group Fuerzas Armadas Guanches set off a bomb at the Los Palmas airport,  forcing incoming flights to land at the much smaller Los Rodeos Airport in Tenerife , the largest island of the Canaries. The two 747s waited at Los Rodeos along with several other large planes until Las Palmas was reopened. The airport’s taxiways were over


Compiled by: Online Colleges Resource For more than two decades,  Michael Keathley  has been an active writer, editor, and educator. After completing a Master of Arts in Classics, additional graduate work in English and education, and overseas study in Macedonia , Italy , Greece , and Pakistan , he authored several monthly columns in international newspapers. He also wrote three books under the pseudonym  Michael A. Dimitri , as well as several hundred articles while working as a faculty member and administrator at various postsecondary institutions both on ground and online. His research interests include Macedonian Studies, Composition/Rhetoric, and online pedagogy. He is a frequent lecturer and presenter at national and international conferences. Join him on Twitter for more discussion at  @MichaelKeathley  or reach him on  Google+ .   At , we’re excited about guiding you toward challenging, satisfying academic programs that will propel your career

On This Day: Elvis Presley Joins the Army

Elvis Presley poses at the Army barracks area in Friedberg, Germany , 1958.   March 24, 2011 05:00 AM by findingDulcinea Staff Elvis Presley, the “ undisputed King of Rock and Roll ,” according to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame , began his career in 1954 and became a national sensation in 1956 with the release of “ Heartbreak Hotel .” He went on to captivate audiences with his unique musical style, provocative hip gyrations and electric personality, producing such hits as “Don’t Be Cruel,” “Hound Dog,” “ Love Me Tender ,” “All Shook Up” and “Jailhouse Rock.” Presley was drafted into the United States Army in December 1957; on March 24, 1958,  he entered the Army at the Memphis draft board . Presley was filmed as he was given an Army haircut and fitted for his uniform. Serving as a member of the 1st Medium Tank Battalion, 32nd Armor Regiment , Presley was stationed in Germany from Oct. 1, 1958, to March 2, 1960. He was released from active duty on March 5 and honorably dischar