Today is Sunday, Oct. 18, the 292nd day of 2020. There are 74 days left in the year.

On this date

• In 1867, the United States took formal possession of Alaska from Russia.

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• In 1892, the first long-distance telephone line between New York and Chicago was officially opened (it could only handle one call at a time).

• In 1898, the American flag was raised in Puerto Rico shortly before Spain formally relinquished control of the island to the U-S.

• In 1944, Soviet troops invaded Czechoslovakia during World War II.

• In 1954, Texas Instruments unveiled the Regency TR-1, the first commercially produced transistor radio.

• In 1972, Congress passed the Clean Water Act, overriding President Richard Nixon’s veto.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor Dawn Wells is 82. College and Pro Football Hall of Famer Mike Ditka is 81. Singer-musician Russ Giguere is 77. Actor Joe Morton is 73. Actor Pam Dawber is 70. Author Terry McMillan is 69. Writer-producer Chuck Lorre is 68. Gospel singer Vickie Winans is 67. Director-screenwriter David Twohy is 65. International Tennis Hall of Famer Martina Navratilova is 64. Actor Jon Lindstrom is 63. International Hall of Fame boxer Thomas Hearns is 62. Actor Jean-Claude Van Damme is 60. Jazz musician Wynton Marsalis is 59. Actor Vincent Spano is 58. Rock musician Tim Cross is 54. Singer Nonchalant is 53. Former tennis player Michael Stich is 52. Actor Joy Bryant is 46. Rock musician Peter Svensson (The Cardigans) is 46. Actor Wesley Jonathan is 42. Rhythm-and-blues singer-actor Ne-Yo is 41. Country singer Josh Gracin is 40. Country musician Jesse Littleton (Marshall Dyllon) is 39. Olympic gold medal skier Lindsey Vonn is 36. Jazz singer-musician Esperanza Spalding is 36. Actor-model Freida Pinto is 36. Actor Zac Efron is 33. Actor Joy Lauren is 31. TV personality Bristol Palin is 30. Actor Tyler Posey is 29. Actor Toby Regbo is 29.

The Associated Press