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June almanac: On these days in our city’s history …



June 1, 1987: Mortgage due on the $140 million U.S. Treasury loan to build Hoover Dam, at 3 percent interest, has been paid off by electricity users, after more than 50 years.

June 2, 1957: The newspaper reports Air Force Col. James McGehee’s recent record-setting flight from Los Angeles to Vegas took 21 minutes, in a new Super Sabre jet aircraft.

June 3, 1945: The film God Is My Co-Pilot is playing at the Palace Theater.

June 4, 1953: Dropped from a B-36 at 35,000 feet, a “super-atomic bomb of new record power” explodes 75 miles outside of Vegas. It is “seen or felt in communities up to 600 miles away, including San Francisco and Los Angeles.”

June 5, 1953: Scientist Bill Ogle, with the Atomic Energy Commission, is hailed a hero for preventing the cancellation of the previous day’s atomic test, after he lures, with cheese, a trapped kangaroo rat from inside equipment essential for the blast.

June 6, 1957: One hundred sixty-five seniors receive diplomas as the first graduating class of Rancho High School.

June 7, 1972: Expenses for work done at the Nevada Test Site in the upcoming fiscal year are projected to top $100 million.

June 8, 1972: On the front page of the R-J is the photo of a naked young girl drenched in hot jellied gasoline and running toward the camera, arms outstretched, screaming and crying, following “an accidental napalm drop” on her town of Trang Bang, South Vietnam.

June 9, 1962: Because Southern Nevada “does not have a morgue, autopsies must be performed in mortuaries here,” according to pathologist Dr. James Clarke.

June 10, 1962: The fourth annual national convention of Gamblers Anonymous (GA) is meeting in Vegas over the weekend.

June 11, 1982: Heavyweight champion Larry Holmes, 40-0, defeats Jerry Cooney (“The Great White Hype”) in the 13th round of a championship fight at Caesar’s Palace.

June 12, 1984: Funeral services are held for Bob Brown, 53, controversial editor of the struggling but reputable local newspaper, The Valley Times.

June 13, 1968: George French, 23, appearing in Justice Court with lawyer Oscar Goodman, is given a hearing date of Aug.26 for publishing an “underground newspaper,” Las Vegas Changing Times, that “encourages the use of marijuana.”

June 14, 1855: A band of 30 men, headed up by Capt. William Bringhurst, arrive here “to start a Mormon settlement.”

June 15, 1962: Oliver Placak of the Southwestern Radiation Health Service has reported that Nevada-produced milk is less radioactive than milk “from any other part of the United States.”

June 16, 2008: After falling 15 feet onto his head at Boyd Gaming Corp.’s Echelon project, carpenter Lyndall Bates, 49, becomes the 12th construction fatality on the Strip in the past 18 months.

June 17, 2009: Reports reveal Nevada’s unemployment reaches 11.3 percent, beating the previous high of 10.7 percent set in December 1982.

June 18, 1957: Sophie Tucker opens tomorrow at the El Rancho Vegas.

June 19, 1992: Forty-two-year-old former heavyweight champion Larry Holmes, 54-3, goes the distance but loses the decision in his fight with 29-year-old Evander Holyfield, 28-0, at Caesars Palace.

June 20, 1947: Las Vegas entrepreneur Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel, 41, is assassinated in Beverly Hills, California.

June 21, 1923: The newspaper reports that Mayor W.C. German has submitted a proposal to city commissioners for all establishments with gambling to close down by 1 a.m., and remain closed until 6 a.m. every day.

June: 22, 1957: Seven hundred six pigs, 75 of which will be dressed in little outfits for a “pig-clothing test,” are scheduled to be “sacrificed” in this morning’s atomic bomb blast near Las Vegas — to, among other things, test “the design and composition of military uniforms” under atomic duress.

June 23, 1992: Following protests by activists, the School Board votes unanimously to build the first new elementary school in Vegas’ predominantly black neighborhoods “in at least two decades.”

June 24, 1992: Vice President Dan Quayle, in town for a bowling convention, speaks out against the television industry for not believing that homosexuality is wrong.

June 25, 2008: Chris Luscombe, 19, the 2007 prom king at Clark High School, dies after being shot at Bob Baskin Park on June 8 in a drive-by shooting.

June 26, 1992: Navy Secretary H. Lawrence Garrett resigns following “the leadership failure demonstrated by the reported sexual assault of 26 women at an aviators’ convention,” known as the Tailhook scandal, at the Las Vegas Hilton in 1991.

June 27, 1935: In grocery stores, ground beef is 15 cents a pound; oranges, 27 cents for two dozen.

June 28, 1961: The school board says “it may take months” to find a replacement for Superintendent Guild Gray, who recently resigned from his $17,000 per year post in the 30,000-pupil district.

June 29, 1957: After unanimously rejecting a raise of 12 cents an hour, security guards at the Nevada Test Site will take a strike vote next week.

June 30, 1922: The newspaper reports the sudden death of pioneer citizen John Wisner, 66, who, in 1905, built the original Overland Hotel on the corner of Main and Fremont streets.

Sources: Las Vegas Age, Morning Tribune, Review-Journal, Sun.