This Day in History

Cameroon's Lake Monoun Explodes, Suffocating 37 (1984)
The explosion at Cameroon's Lake Monoun, which killed 37 people, at first baffled investigators. It was only after a similar event at nearby Lake Nyos two years later claimed the lives of 1,700 people that experts determined that high concentration of carbon dioxide in the lakes had caused the suffocating limnic eruptions. Venting pipes were inserted into Lake Monoun to remove the gas and prevent future eruptions. How many lakes in the world are susceptible to this sort of deadly gas release? Discuss

Final Public Execution in the US (1936)
In 1936, convicted rapist Rainey Bethea was sentenced to be hanged in Owensboro, Kentucky, at a time when such hangings were conducted publicly. Because the county sheriff supervising the execution was a woman, the case sparked national press coverage, and up to 20,000 spectators gathered to watch the event, the last of its kind in the US. Two years later, the Kentucky legislature officially put an end to public executions. How did newspaper reports depict the hanging?

The Berlin Wall Goes Up (1961)
After World War II, the Soviet Union occupied East Berlin while control of West Berlin was split between the US, the UK, and France. From 1949 to 1961, more than 2 million East Germans fled to West Germany to escape Communist rule before the wall was built to stop the tide of defectors. First constructed of barbed wire and erected at night, the barrier was eventually replaced by a concrete structure studded with watchtowers manned by East German soldiers. What was the "Death Strip"?

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Spring snowstorm barging into Colorado, Wyoming
Amounts could vary greatly, but up to 15 inches of snow could fall at higher elevations in Colorado.