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5 Fun Facts About July 8 In Tennessee History

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

1. Battle of Thompson's Station: On July 8th, 1863, the Battle of Thompson's Station was fought during the American Civil War. The battle was significant because it was the only battle during the war in which Confederate forces were able to capture an entire Union brigade.

2. First Woman Elected to State Senate: On July 8th, 1920, Mrs. Annie Jones of Memphis became the first woman elected to the Tennessee State Senate. Jones was a prominent suffragist and her election came just months after the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, granting women the right to vote.

3. James Earl Ray Captured: On July 8th, 1968, James Earl Ray was captured at London's Heathrow Airport. Ray had assassinated civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. in Memphis on April 4, 1968, and had been on the run for over two months before his capture.

4. Dollywood Opens: On July 8th, 1986, Dollywood, the theme park owned by entertainer Dolly Parton, opened in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. The park has since become a popular tourist destination, attracting millions of visitors each year.

5. Lady Vols Win First National Championship: On July 8th, 1987, the University of Tennessee Lady Vols basketball team, led by head coach Pat Summitt, won their first national championship by defeating Louisiana Tech in the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship game. Summitt would go on to lead the Lady Vols to seven more national titles in her coaching career.
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