26th October
It was on this day...
1825 Erie Canal Opens

The 425-mile Erie Canal took only 2 years to build, it was dug mostly by oxen and Irish diggers paid $10 a month, and apparently encouraged on by barrels of whisky strategically placed along the route...

The canal ran from Buffalo, east of Lake Erie, to Albany, on the upper Hudson, passing through the gap in the mountains in the Mohawk Valley region. It had 83 canal locks to accommodate the 500-foot rise in elevation.

It was opened on this day by Governor Clinton (of New York) in Buffalo and news of the canal's opening was transmitted to New York via the method of canon fire:

81 canons were positioned within hearing distance of each other along the canal, one firing as soon as they heard the other one firing.

It took 81 minutes for news of the canal's opening to reach New York, the fastest method of communication known at the time.

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Hilary Rodham Clinton
Bob Hoskins
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Other News
1877 The first ever operation on a kneecap is performed by British surgeon Joseph Lister on this day.
1984 A 14 day old baby girl is given a baboon's heart to replace her defective one. The walnut sized heart lasted 20 days before the baby died.
1994 Israel and Jordan sign a peace treaty after 46 years of war.

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