• On Oct. 28, 1886, the Statue of Liberty, a gift from France to the United States, is dedicated in New York Harbor. The 151-foot statue was originally known as “Liberty Enlightening the World.”
• On Oct. 27, 1904, the first subway system in America is opened in New York City. The first route ran north from City Hall, under Lafayette Street and Park Avenue to Grand Central Station, west along 42nd Street to Times Square, then north on Broadway to 145th Street.
• On Oct. 25, 1912, comedian Minnie Pearl, destined to become a longtime fixture of Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry, is born. Pearl was famous for her comic monologues about hillbilly life.
• On Oct. 30, 1938, radio program Mercury Theater on the Air presents H.G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds,” a fictional drama about a Martian invasion in New Jersey. The program sparked panic among millions of listeners who believed the play was an actual news broadcast.
• On Oct. 29, 1954, the last Hudson motorcar is manufactured. Although rarely a top seller, Hudson was responsible for a number of important automotive innovations, including placement of the steering wheel on the left side.
• On Oct. 24, 1969, movie star Richard Burton dazzles wife Elizabeth Taylor when he buys her a 69-carat Cartier diamond ring costing $1.5 million. His purchase of the famous Cartier diamond was the product of a fight in which Burton called Taylor’s hands large and ugly. She responded that in that case, he’d better buy her the 69-carat ring she wanted so that her hands would look smaller and more attractive.
• On Oct. 26, 1984, at Loma Linda University Medical Center, Dr. Leonard L. Bailey performs the first baboon-to-human heart transplant, replacing a 14-day-old infant girl’s defective heart with the healthy, walnut-sized heart of a young baboon.
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