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5 Fun Facts About July 16 In Indiana History

---Learn Every Day: IN Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history in To: 618-270-4005---

1. On July 16, 1924, the Ku Klux Klan held a mass meeting in Kokomo, Indiana, that drew an estimated 7,500 people. The Klan was a powerful force in Indiana during the 1920s, with as many as one-third of all white men in the state belonging to the organization. The Klan's influence waned in the late 1920s, but its legacy is still felt in Indiana politics today.

2. On July 16, 1945, the world's first atomic bomb was detonated in Alamogordo, New Mexico, as part of the Manhattan Project. Among the scientists who worked on the project was Indiana native and Purdue University graduate William "Joe" Harrison. Harrison's family home in Lafayette, Indiana, is now a museum devoted to his life and work.

3. On July 16, 1969, astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins embarked on the historic Apollo 11 mission, which would make Armstrong the first person to set foot on the moon. Armstrong was originally from Wapakoneta, Ohio, but earned his master's degree at the University of Southern California, which has a campus in Indianapolis.

4. On July 16, 1983, a tornado struck the town of Jasper, Indiana, killing one person and injuring dozens of others. The tornado was part of a larger outbreak that swept across the Midwest that weekend, causing millions of dollars in damage and claiming dozens of lives.

5. On July 16, 1989, Mike Tyson knocked out Carl "The Truth" Williams in the first round of a championship boxing match at the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Tyson was born in Brooklyn, New York, but trained in the late 1980s at a gym in Catskill, New York, that was owned by Indiana native Cus D'Amato. D'Amato, who passed away in 1985, is often credited with discovering Tyson and mentoring him early in his career.
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