Daily readings about people, places, and events in American history.
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February 11th
U.S. Extreme Points
On February 11, 1933, President Herbert Hoover designated Death Valley in California and Nevada as a national monument (later re-designated as a national park). One of the valley’s unique characteristics is that it contains the lowest spot in the United States, 282 feet below sea level. Here’s the rundown on U.S. extreme points, in altitude and around the compass.

Highest point
Mount McKinley, Alaska | 20,320 ft.

Highest point outside Alaska
Mount Whitney, California | 14,494 ft.

Lowest point
Death Valley, California | 282 ft.

Northernmost point
Point Barrow, Alaska | 71° 23’ N

Northernmost point outside Alaska
Northwest Angle, Minnesota | 49° 23’ N

Southernmost point
Ka Lae, Hawaii | 18° 55’ N

Southernmost point outside Hawaii
Key West, Florida | 24° 33’ N

Easternmost point
West Quoddy Head, Maine* | 66° 57’ W

Westernmost point
Cape Wrangell, Attu Island, Alaska** | 172° 27’E

Westernmost point outside Alaska
Cape Alava, Washington | 124° 44’ W

* Since Alaska’s Aleutian Islands stretch into the Eastern Hemisphere, Semisopochnoi Island, Alaska, has the easternmost U.S. longitudinal coordinates at 179° 46’ E.

** Amatignak Island, Alaska, has the westernmost longitudinal coordinates at 179° 06’ W.

American History Parade
Pennsylvania Hospital, the first hospital in the United States, opens in Philadelphia.

Robert Fulton patents his steamboat.

Massachusetts governor Elbridge Gerry signs a law that redraws district lines in his party’s favor, thus giving rise to the term “gerrymandering.”

President-elect Abraham Lincoln leaves Springfield, Illinois, for Washington, D.C., saying, “I now leave, not knowing when, or whether ever, I may return”—he never does.

President Hoover designates Death Valley as a national monument.
This content is courtesy of The American Patriot's Almanac
© 2008, 2010 by William J. Bennett and John T.E. Cribb

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