Today in History

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Today is Monday, October 12, the 285th day of 2009. There are 80 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

* 1492 - On TransAtlantic voyage, Christopher Columbus lands on island later to be named Bahamas.

* 1928 - The first "iron lung" used at Boston Children's Hospital, Massachusetts.

* 1933 - US bank robber John Dillinger escapes from a jail in Allen County, Ohio, with the help of his gang, who killed the sheriff.

* 1940 - US silent film star Tom Mix is killed in car crash.

* 1968 - The 19th summer Olympic Games are officially opened in Mexico City by Mexican President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz.

* 1982 - Australian National Gallery is opened to the public by the Queen.

* 1997 US singer John Denver, aged 53, is killed in the crash of his privately built aircraft in Monterey Bay, California.

* 2001 - The United Nations and its secretary-general, Kofi Annan, win the Nobel Peace Prize; NBC announces that an assistant to anchorman Tom Brokaw has contracted the skin form of anthrax after opening a "threatening" letter to her boss that contained a suspicious powder. …