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October 6, 1981: Egyptian President Anwar al-Sadat was assassinated. Sadat was assassinated during the annual victory parade held in Cairo to celebrate Egypt's crossing of the Suez Canal. In addition to Sadat, eleven others were killed, including the Cuban ambassador, an Omani general, a Coptic Orthodox bishop and Samir Helmy, the head of Egypt's Central Auditing Agency (CAA). Twenty-eight were wounded, including Vice President Hosni Mubarak, Irish Defence Minister James Tully, and four US military liaison officers. The assassination squad was led by Lieutenant Khalid Islambouli after a fatwā approving the assassination had been obtained from Omar Abdel-Rahman. Islambouli was tried, found guilty, sentenced to death, and executed by firing squad in April 1982.
October 7, 1916: Georgia Tech defeated Cumberland University 222-0 in the most lopsided college football game in history.Cumberland College, a school in Lebanon, Tennessee, had discontinued its football program before the season but was not allowed to cancel its game against the Engineers. The fact that Cumberland's baseball team had crushed Georgia Tech earlier that year 22–0 (amidst allegations that Cumberland used professionals as ringers) probably accounted for Georgia Tech coach John Heisman's running up the score on the Bulldogs, Heisman also being the Engineers' baseball coach. He insisted on the schools' scheduling agreement, which required Cumberland to pay $3,000 ($63,294 in inflation-adjusted terms) to Tech if its football team failed to show. So, George E. Allen (who was elected to serve as Cumberland's football team student manager after first serving as the baseball team student manager) put together a team of 14 men to travel to Atlanta as Cumberland's football team.
October 8, 1912: Montenegro declared war against the Ottoman Empire, beginning the First Balkan War. By the early 20th century, Bulgaria, Greece, Montenegro and Serbia had achieved independence from the Ottoman Empire, but large parts of their ethnic populations remained under Ottoman rule. In 1912, these countries formed the Balkan League. There were three main causes of the First Balkan War. The Ottoman Empire was unable to reform itself, govern satisfactorily, or deal with the rising ethnic nationalism of its diverse peoples. Secondly the Great Powers quarrelled amongst themselves and failed to ensure that the Ottomans would carry out the needed reforms. This led the Balkan states to impose their own solution. Most important, the Balkan League had been formed, and its members were confident that it could defeat the Turks. The First Balkan War broke out when the League attacked the Ottoman Empire on 8 October 1912 and was ended seven months later by the Treaty of London. After five centuries, the Ottoman Empire lost virtually all of its possessions in the Balkans.
October 9, 1888: The Washington Monument officially opened to the general public. The Washington Monument attracted enormous crowds before it officially opened. During the six months that followed its dedication, 10,041 people climbed the 897 steps and 50 landings to the top. After the elevator that had been used to raise building materials was altered to carry passengers, the number of visitors grew rapidly. As early as 1888, an average of 55,000 people per month went to the top, and today the Washington Monument has more than 800,000 visitors each year. As with all historic areas administered by the National Park Service, the national memorial was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966. The stairs are no longer accessible to the general public due to safety issues and vandalism of the interior commemorative stones.
October 10, 732: Near Poitiers, France, the leader of the Franks, Charles Martel and his men, defeat a large army of Moors, at the Battle of Tours, stopping the Muslims from spreading into Western Europe. The governor of Cordoba, Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi, was killed during the battle.
October 11, 1809: Along the Natchez Trace in Tennessee, explorer Meriwether Lewis died under mysterious circumstances at an inn called Grinder's Stand. After leaving dinner, he went to his bedroom. In the predawn hours of October 11, the innkeeper heard gunshots. Servants found Lewis badly injured from multiple gunshot wounds, including one to the head. He died shortly after sunrise. The same account was published in the Nashville "Democratic Clarion" and repeated with some embellishment by newspapers across the country. The Nashville newspaper also reported that Lewis's throat was cut. Money Lewis had borrowed from Major Gilbert Russell at Fort Pickering to complete the journey was not recovered. While modern historians generally accept his death as a suicide, there is some debate.
October 12, 1799: Jeanne Geneviève Labrosse became the first woman to jump from a balloon with a parachute, from an altitude of 900 meters. On October 11, 1802, she filed a patent application on behalf of her husband for: "a device called a parachute, intended to slow the fall of the basket after the balloon bursts. Its vital organs are a cap of cloth supporting the basket and a circle of wood beneath and outside of the parachute and used to hold it open while climbing: it must perform its task at the moment of separation from the balloon, by maintaining a column of air."