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5 Fun Facts About June 20 In Massachusetts History

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

1. On June 20, 1863, a group of African American soldiers from Massachusetts, part of the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, played a crucial role in the Union victory at the Battle of Battery Wagner during the American Civil War. The unit is considered one of the first official black regiments in U.S. history.

2. On June 20, 1902, Massachusetts Governor Winthrop Murray Crane signed the first workers' compensation law in the United States. The law provided benefits to workers who were injured on the job, including medical expenses and lost wages.

3. In 1932, Babe Ruth hit his 600th career home run on June 20 at Fenway Park in Boston. Ruth's milestone homer came in a game against the Detroit Tigers and made him the first baseball player to reach the 600-home run mark.

4. On June 20, 1953, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, convicted of espionage, were executed at Sing Sing prison in New York. The Rosenbergs, who were accused of passing atomic secrets to the Soviet Union, were controversially sentenced to death for their actions.

5. On June 20, 1980, the Massachusetts State Lottery began its operations. The lottery, which is now a major source of revenue for the state, used its first ticket sale to raise money for public education. Today, the lottery provides more than $1 billion annually to support education and other public projects in Massachusetts.
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