Today is Thursday, Oct. 11, the 285th day of 2012. There are 81 days left in the year.
On Oct. 11, 1962, Pope John XXIII convened the first session of the Roman Catholic Church’s Second Vatican Council, also known as “Vatican 2.”
On this date:
In 1779, Polish nobleman Casimir Pulaski, fighting for American independence, died two days after being wounded during the Revolutionary War Battle of Savannah, Ga.
In 1811, the first steam-powered ferryboat, the Juliana (built by John Stevens), was put into operation between New York City and Hoboken, N.J.
In 1862, during the Civil War, Confederate forces led by Gen. J.E.B. Stuart looted the town of Chambersburg, Pa.
In 1890, the Daughters of the American Revolution was founded.
In 1910, Theodore Roosevelt became the first former U.S. president to fly in an airplane during a visit to St. Louis, Mo.
In 1968, Apollo 7, the first manned Apollo mission, was launched with astronauts Wally Schirra, Donn Fulton Eisele and Walter Cunningham aboard.
In 1984, space shuttle Challenger astronaut Kathryn Sullivan became the first American woman to walk in space.