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5 Fun Facts About October 16 In North Carolina History

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

1. 1780 - Battle of Camden: North Carolina played a crucial role in the American Revolution, and one of the key events in the state's history was the Battle of Camden. On October 16, 1780, American forces led by General Horatio Gates were decisively defeated by the British under General Charles Cornwallis. This battle marked a turning point in the war, as it weakened the American army and opened the way for British expansion in the South.

2. 1854 - Lake Mattamuskeet drained: Lake Mattamuskeet is the largest natural lake in North Carolina, and for many years it was a major fishing and hunting ground for the region's Native American tribes. However, in the mid-19th century, the state began a project to drain the lake and convert the land into farmland. On October 16, 1854, workers breached the lake's natural dam and began the process of draining it. Today, the more than 40,000-acre lake still exists, but it is much shallower and serves primarily as a wildlife refuge.

3. 1968 - Tommie Smith and John Carlos Olympic protest: On October 16, 1968, the Olympic Games were being held in Mexico City. During the medal ceremony for the 200-meter dash, American runners Tommie Smith and John Carlos raised their fists in a black power salute as a protest against racism and social injustice in the United States. This act of defiance sparked controversy and criticism, but also brought attention to issues that were important to many people in North Carolina and across the country.

4. 1991 - Lumberton murders: On October 16, 1991, a brutal murder shook the small town of Lumberton, North Carolina. Police found the body of 17-year-old Misty Dawn Lowery in a soybean field, and her death was soon linked to several other murders in the area. The case went unsolved for several years, until a man named Timothy B. Hennis was convicted of the murders in 2010. Hennis had been a soldier stationed at Fort Bragg at the time of the killings.

5. 2016 - Hurricane Matthew: On October 16, 2016, Hurricane Matthew made landfall in North Carolina as a Category 1 storm. The hurricane brought heavy rains and strong winds, causing flooding and damage across the state. Several rivers, including the Cape Fear and the Neuse, overflowed their banks, and thousands of residents were forced to evacuate their homes. The storm was responsible for 28 deaths in North Carolina and caused billions of dollars in damage.
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