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5 Fun Facts About May 16 In Nebraska History

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1. In 1885, the first issue of the Nebraska State Journal was published in Lincoln, Nebraska. This daily newspaper went on to become one of the state's most popular and enduring publications.

2. On May 16, 1930, the University of Nebraska dedicated its newly constructed Memorial Stadium. The stadium, which has since undergone several renovations and expansions, remains the home of the Nebraska Cornhuskers football team to this day.

3. In 1959, the United States Air Force officially designated Offutt Air Force Base in Bellevue, Nebraska as the headquarters of the Strategic Air Command. This momentous decision would have a significant impact on the state's economy and military presence for decades to come.

4. On May 16, 1975, the Nebraska Supreme Court ruled in the landmark case of State v. Kellogg that the state's death penalty statute was unconstitutional. The decision led to a national debate on the ethics and legality of the death penalty, and Nebraska would not reinstate capital punishment until 2015.

5. In 2014, Nebraska made history by becoming the first conservative state in the United States to abolish the death penalty since North Dakota did so in 1973. Governor Pete Ricketts vetoed the bill to repeal the death penalty, but the Nebraska Legislature overrode the veto with a vote of 30-19, thereby ending the practice of capital punishment in the state.
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