On this day: November 2

Published On: Nov 01 2012 08:44:24 PM EDT   Updated On: Nov 02 2014 02:00:00 AM EST

Gen. George Washington says goodbye to his troops, cheerleading is born, the "Spruce Goose" takes off, Truman defeats Dewey, and a federal holiday is created to honor Martin Luther King Jr., all on this day.

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1984: Velma Barfield is executed at Central Prison in Raleigh, North Carolina, becoming the first woman executed in the United States since 1962. Barfield, who was convicted in 1978 of killing Stuart Taylor, her fiance, by putting poison in his beer, is also the first woman to be executed by lethal injection. She had also confessed to the fatal poisoning of her mother and two elderly people for whom she had been hired to care, although she was never tried for those slayings.