On This Day, January 3rd
1. 1987: Aretha Franklin becomes the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
It was on this date in 1987 that Aretha Franklin became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. One of the main requirements to be considered for nomination is the artist had to release their first album at least 25 years prior. This means at the time they were only looking at artists prior to 1960 and popular female musicians were few and far between. However, once Aretha was inducted the floodgates opened and females were inducted almost every year following. The Supremes were inducted in 1988 and Tina Turner a few years later.
2. 1959: Alaska becomes the 49th state of the United States
When the United States Secretary of State, William H. Seward, signed a treaty on March 30, 1867, to purchase the land we know now as Alaska from Russia he was ridiculed by Congress. It was referred to in the press as “Seward’s folly” even though the U.S. government got the deal of a century by paying only $7.2 million which worked out to roughly two cents an acre. Seward would have the last laugh once it was determined that Alaska was extremely rich in natural resources such as gold and oil. It was on this date in 1959 President Eisenhower signed the special proclamation that admitted the Alaskan territory into the Union making it the 49th state. It also immediately became the largest state in the country at nearly one-fifth the size of the lower 48 states.
3. 1993: The biggest comeback in NFL history
It was on this date in 1993 that the Buffalo Bills etched their name into the history books when the pulled the biggest comeback in NFL history against the Houston Oilers. Star quarterback for the Oilers and future Hall of Famer Warren Moon was having a great game with four touchdown passes bringing the score to 28-3 at halftime. The start of the third quarter made things look even bleaker for the Bills when the Oilers strong safety intercepted a pass and ran it in for a touchdown bringing the score to 35-3. Bills fans had started to give up hope and many of them got up and left. But Bills quarterback Frank Reich wasn’t going to give up so easily. The very next possession he led his team right down the field to score. The Bills were on fire, the defense managed to hold Moon and his Oilers to only a field goal in the second half. At the end of regulation time, the game was tied up 38-38 going into overtime. Bills kicker, Steve Christie lined up for a 32-yard field goal and punched it right through the uprights to win the game 41-38.