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Siege of Leningrad begins

Nazi Germany's siege of Leningrad begins with the encirclement of the Soviet city on September 8, 1941. It lasted slightly less than 900 days. As food and fuel ran out, some citizens were forced to subsist on bread made with sawdust while others worked through the winter in makeshift military factories without heat. Although many perished from starvation, bombings, and the bitter cold, the citizens’ determined resistance held the German troops at bay and helped turn the tide of World War II. In January 1944, a Soviet offensive drove the Germans from the city's outskirts and the siege was lifted. An estimated 650,000 residents of Leningrad had perished. The Soviet government awarded the Order of Lenin to the people of Leningrad in 1945, paying tribute to their endurance during the grueling siege.

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Star Trek premieres

On this day in 1966, the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise takes off on its mission to "boldly go where no man has gone before," with the premiere of Star Trek. Although Star Trek ran for only three years (starting in 1966) and never placed better than No. 52 in the ratings, Gene Roddenberry's series became a cult classic and spawned four television series and nine movies. The first Star Trek spin-... Read more >

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Israeli police kill 17 Palestinians

Seventeen Palestinians are shot and killed, and over 100 are wounded, by Israeli police at a mosque on Jerusalem's Temple Mount, a site sacred to Jews and Muslims. Although both Palestinian and Israeli human rights groups accused police of using unnecessary violence, an official report commissioned by the Israeli government, released on October 26, claimed that a group of Palestinians had start... Read more >

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Galveston, Texas devastated by hurricane

On this day in 1900, a Category 4 hurricane rips through Galveston, Texas, killing an estimated 6,000 to 8,000 people. A 15-foot storm surge floods the city, then situated at less than nine feet above sea level, and numerous homes and buildings are destroyed. The hurricane remains the worst weather-related disaster in U.S. history in terms of loss of life. Galveston, first visited by French and... Read more >

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First football league matches are played

League Of Their Own

When football began in the 19th Century, it was a bit of a mess. First it was dominated by amateurs, then professional clubs formed, but still only played in cup competitions and friendlies with no real organisation. That was until 1888, when the canny secretary of Aston Villa got in touch with a few other teams and suggested they form some sort of ... Read more >