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On This Day: October 2

1861 - First Wisconsin Central Railroad Train Runs

On this date the first train of the Wisconsin Central Railroad ran between Menasha and Waupaca. The railroad was important in the development of railroads in Wisconsin. [Source: History Just Ahead: A Guide to Wisconsin's Historical Markers edited by Sarah Davis McBride, p.69]

1861 - (Civil War) 6th Wisconsin Light Artillery Musters In

The 6th Wisconsin Light Artillery mustered in. This battery, also known as the "Buena Vista Artillery," would go on to move through Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, and Georgia. It participated in the battles of Corinth, Raymond, Jackson, Champion Hill, and the sieges of Corinth and Vicksburg. It would lose only 29 men in four years of service. One officer and 6 enlisted men were killed and 22 enlisted men died from disease.

1884 - Pike's Creek Log Jam Tragedy

On this date near Washburn and Bayfield, a large log dam burst, causing rushing water to destroy two wagon bridges and a railroad track in use at the time. Several people were killed or severely injured. [Source: "B" Book : Beer Bottles, Brawls, Boards, Brothels, Bibles, Battles & Brownstone by Tony Woiak, p.14]

1958 - Janesville Auto Workers Strike

On this date 4,000 members of United Auto Workers Locals 95 (Fisher Body) and 121 (Chevrolet) at Janesville's two GM plants walked off the job as part of a national strike over GM's refusal to agree to a contract patterned after those reached with Ford and Chrysler. The desired contract demanded pay increases of 24 to 30 cents an hour and raises in supplemental unemployment benefits and severance pay. [Source: Local Union No. 95 UAW]

1983 - Eunice Kennedy Shriver Participates in Groundbreaking Ceremony

On this date Eunice Kennedy Shriver, sister of late President John F. Kennedy, turned over the first shovel of dirt for an addition to St. Coletta School, an institution for developmentally disabled people in Jefferson. Shriver's 65-year-old sister, Rosemary Kennedy, was a resident at the school for over 35 years. The Kennedy Foundation gave a $1 million gift to the school in honor of the 93rd birthday of the family's matriarch, Rose Kennedy. [Source: USA Today.com]

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