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This Day in History

Unlike most of the rest of my site, this one's self-explanatory!

January 25, 1858

Mendelssohn's "Wedding March" is played at the marriage of Queen Victoria's daughter.

December 24, 1865

The Ku Klux Klan is founded.

December 19, 1606

Three ships belonging to the Virginia Company of London depart; they found Jamestown.

December 18, 1865

The Thirteenth Amendment is certified.

December 11, 1936

Edward VIII

December 10, 1684

Isaac Newton's discovery of gravity is shared with the Royal Society.

December 9, 1935

The Heisman Trophy is awarded for the first time.

December 8, 1980

John Lennon is murdered outside his apartment by Mark Chapman.

November 30, 1982

Michael Jackson's Thriller released.

November 28, 1821

Panama declares independence from Spain, joins Gran Colombia.

November 25, 1491

After an eight-month siege, the Moors agree to the Treaty of Granada

November 9, 1867

Shoguns hand power back to Emperor Meiji.

November 8, 1895

Wilhelm Roentgen discovers X-rays.

November 7, 1916

Jeannette Rankin becomes the first woman elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.

November 6, 1934

Memphis becomes the first city to join the Tennessee Valley Authority.

November 5, 1605

Guy Fawkes and co-conspirators fail to blow up the Parliament building in London.

November 4, 1995

Israeli PM Yitzhak Rabin is assassinated.

November 3, 1973

Mariner 10 begins its voyage to Mercury.

November 2, 1930

Haile Selassie is crowned emperor of Ethiopia.

November 1, 1755

Earthquake, tsunami devastate Lisbon.

October 31, 1984

Indira Gandhi is assassinated by Sikh bodyguards.

October 30, 1938

H.G. Welles broadcasts a radio version of The War of the Worlds.

October 29, 1922

Mussolini appointed prime minister of Italy by King Victor Emmanuel III.

October 28, 1420

The Ming dynasty completed construction of the Forbidden City.

October 27, 1922

Southern Rhodesia (today's Zimbabwe) rejects annexation by South African Union.

October 26, 1881

Gunfight at the O.K. Corral.

October 25, 1983

United States invades Grenada.

October 24, 1931

George Washington Bridge opens, connecting New York and New Jersey.

October 23, 1850

Suffragettes hold convention in Worcester, Mass.

October 22, 1962

JFK declares a "quarantine" of Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

October 21, 1520

João Alvares Fagundes discovers Saint Pierre and Miquelon.

October 20, 1740

Maria Theresa becomes ruler of Austria upon the death of her father.

October 19, 1789

John Jay becomes the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

October 18, 1898

Spain abandoned Puerto Rico, leaving it to the American military.

October 17, 1933

Albert Einstein flees Nazi Germany for the United States.

October 16, 1964

China becomes the fifth nuclear power.

October 15, 1894

French soldier Alfred Dreyfus arrested for espionage.

October 14, 1322

Robert the Bruce defeats Edward II, securing Scotland's independence.

October 13, 54

Roman emperor Claudius poisoned; his adopted son, Nero, ascends.

October 12, 1892

First recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.

October 11, 1975

George Carlin hosts the debut of NBC's Saturday Night.

October 10, 1957

Windscale fire, Britain's worst nuclear incident.

October 9, 768

Carloman I, Charlemagne named Kings of the Franks.

October 8, 2001

The Bush Administration establishes the Office of Homeland Security.

October 7, 1571

The short-lived Holy League annihilates the Ottoman Empire at the Battle of Lepanto.

October 6, 1945

After being denied entry to Wrigley Field, Billy Sianis places the "curse of the billy goat" on the Chicago Cubs.

October 5, 1970

Public Broadcasting Service begins operations.

October 4, 1883

The Orient Express begins its first run from Paris to Constantinople.

October 3, 52 B.C.

Gallic leader Vercingetorix surrenders to Julius Caesar.

October 2, 1937

Rafael Trujillo orders murder of Haitians in Dominican Republic.

October 1, 1890

U.S. Congress establishes Yosemite National Park.

September 30, 1935

FDR dedicates the Hoover Dam.

September 29, 1951

First live coast-to-coast television broadcast of a sporting event.

September 28, 1963

Roy Lichtenstein's Whaam! makes its debut.

September 27, 1930

Bobby Jones completes golf's Grand Slam.

September 26, 1933

Machine Gun Kelly surrenders to "G-Men".

September 25, 1066

King Harold of England destroys invading Viking force at Stamford Bridge.

September 24, 1780

American traitor Benedict Arnold flees after John André's arrest.

September 23, 1952

Nixon, VP candidate, makes "Checkers" speech.

September 22, 1869

Richard Wagner's Das Rheingold makes its debut.

September 21, 1976

Chilean dissident Orlando Letelier assassinated in Washington, D.C.

September 20, 1187

Muslim leader Saladin begins his siege on Jerusalem.

September 19, 1692

Giles Corey, accused of witchcraft, pressed to death.

September 18, 1873

Jay Cooke & Company goes bankrupt, triggering the Panic of 1873.

September 17, 1859

Joshua Norton declares himself “Emperor” of the United States.

September 16, 1810

Miguel Hidalgo begins fight for Mexican independence from Spain.

September 15, 1950

United Nations forces make a surprise amphibious landing at Inchon, South Korea.

September 14, 1741

George Frideric Handel completes Messiah.

September 13, 1814

Francis Scott Key begins writing "Defence of Fort McHenry".

September 12, 1846

Elizabeth Barrett elopes with Robert Browning.

September 11, 1941

Ground broken on The Pentagon in Alexandria, Virginia.

September 10, 1846

Elias Howe granted patent for sewing machine.

September 9, 9 A.D.

Arminius destroys three Roman legions at the Battle of the Teutoberg Forest.

September 8, 1900

Hurricane destroys Galveston, Texas, killing over 8,000.

September 7, 1776

David Bushnell's submarine Turtle attacks British ship in New York Harbor.

September 6, 1966

Hendrik Verwoerd, the architect of Apartheid, is assassinated.

September 5, 1661

French finance minister Nicolas Fouquet arrested for a lavish party.

September 4, 476

Odoacer overthrows the Western Roman Empire.

September 3, 1951

Long-running soap opera Search for Tomorrow begins its run.

September 2, 1752

Great Britain adopts the Gregorian calendar, nearly two decades after most other countries.

September 1, 1715

"Sun King" Louis XIV dies, ending 72-year reign.

August 31, 1795

British capture the Ceylonese port of Trincomalee from the Dutch.

August 30, 1967

Thurgood Marshall confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

August 29, 1831

Michael Faraday demonstrates the principle of electromagnetic induction.

August 28, 1955

14-year-old Emmett Till, a black boy, brutally murdered in Mississippi.

August 27, 1928

Major powers sign Kellogg-Briand Pact, supposedly ending all war.

August 26, 1346

English use longbows to dominate French at Crécy.

August 25, 1835

The New York Sun perpetrates the "Great Moon Hoax."

August 24, 394

Last known Egyptian hieroglyph created.

August 23, 1784

Part of western North Carolina declares itself the State of Frankland (later Franklin).

August 22, 1950

Althea Gibson breaks the color barrier in tennis.

August 21, 1863

Rebel William Quantrill massacres Lawrence, Kansas.

August 20, 1882

Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture makes its debut.

August 19, 1909

First race held at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

August 18, 1945

Sukarno becomes first Indonesian president.

August 17, 1798

An apparition of the Virgin Mary appears in La Vang, Vietnam.

August 16, 1927

The tragic Dole Air Race began in California.

August 14, 1900

The Eight Nations alliance captures Peking (Beijing) from Boxer rebels.

August 13, 1521

Hernando Cortés captures the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan.

August 12, 30 BC

Cleopatra VII commits suicide.

August 11, 1919

German Reich adopts its new constitution in the city of Weimar.

August 10, 1813

José Miguel Carrera founds the Instituto Nacional, Chile's oldest school.

August 9, 1635

Julius Caesar routs Pompey at the Battle of Pharsalus.

August 8, 2008

Games of the XXIX Olympiad begin in Beijing.

August 7, 1947

Thor Heyerdahl reaches French Polynesia in the Kon-Tiki.

August 6, 1945

The Enola Gay drops an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan.

August 5, 1735

John Peter Zenger acquitted of libel for publishing the truth.

August 4, 1821

The Saturday Evening Post publishes its first edition.

August 3, 1921

Commissioner Kennesaw Mountain Landis bans eight players in the "Black Sox" scandal.

August 2, 1923

President Harding dies; Calvin Coolidge ascends.

August 1, 1774

Joseph Priestley discovers oxygen.

July 31, 1777

The Continental Congress commissions the Marquis de Lafayette.

July 30, 1975

Something interesting happened!

July 29, 1858

U.S. and Japan sign Treaty of Amity and Commerce, ending Japanese isolationism.

July 28, 1794

Maximilien Robespierre, architect of the Reign of Terror, is beheaded.

July 27, 1921

Researchers isolate insulin and identify its use in treating diabetes.

July 26, 811

Khan Krum of Bulgaria ambushes and kills the Byzantine emperor.

July 25, 315

Arch of Constantine completed, honoring victory at Milvian Bridge.

July 24, 1567

Mary, Queen of Scots is forced to abdicate.

July 23, 1926

William Fox buys patents for the Movietone sound system.

July 22, 1793

William Mackenzie completes the first westward crossing of Canada.

July 21, 356 BC

The second Temple of Artemis at Ephesus is destroyed by arson.

July 20, 1934

Police in Minneapolis open fire on striking truck drivers.

July 19, 1870

France declares war on Prussia.

July 18, 1290

King Edward I banishes Jews from England.

July 17, 1938

Douglas Corrigan flies the "wrong way" to Ireland.

July 16, 622

Islamic calendar begins with Muhammad's flight to Medina.

July 15, 1741

Russians explore Alaska for the first time.

July 14, 1881

Pat Garrett shoots and kills outlaw Billy the Kid.

July 13, 1977

Power outage in New York City leads to widespread looting.

July 12, 1776

James Cook departs on his third and final voyage.

July 11, 1972

Chess championship between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky begins.

July 10, 1940

Pro-Axis French government established, headquartered at Vichy.

July 9, 1540

Henry VIII annuls his fourth marriage (to Anne of Cleves).

July 8, 1960

U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers charged by Soviets with espionage.

July 7, 1937

Second Sino-Japanese War begins.

July 6, 1995

Serbian military, led by Ratko Mladić, begins genocide in Srebrenica.

July 5, 1977

Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, first elected Pakistani PM, overthrown.

July 4, 1855

Walt Whitman publishes first edition of Leaves of Grass.

July 3, 1884

Charles Dow publishes his first stock average.

July 2, 1900

Debut of Finlandia by Jean Sibelius.

July 1, 1867

Canada becomes a federal dominion; now celebrated as a national holiday.

June 30, 1860

Thinkers meet at Oxford to debate Darwin's theory of evolution.

June 29, 1972

the U.S. Supreme Court places a moratorium the death penalty.

June 28, 1964

Malcolm X founds the Organization of Afro-American Unity.

June 27, 1844

Mormon prophet Joseph Smith killed in Carthage, Illinois.

June 26, 1876

Sioux forces defeat and kill George Custer at Little Bighorn.

June 25, 1978

"Gay Pride Flag" makes its debut in San Francisco.

June 24, 637

Rival clans meet at the Battle of Moira, the largest in Irish history.

June 23, 1917

Ernie Shore relieves Babe Ruth, pitches an unofficial perfect game.

June 22, 1839

Architects of the Trail of Tears assassinated by fellow Cherokees.

June 21, 1877

Ten "Molly Maguires" hanged in Pennsylvania.

June 20, 1789

French Third Estate takes Tennis Court Oath.

June 19, 1865

First Juneteenth celebrations in Galveston, Texas.

June 18, 1873

Susan B. Anthony found guilty of attempting to vote.

June 17, 1930

President Hoover signs Hawley-Smoot Tariff.

June 16, 1904

Bloomsday: James Joyce goes on a date with his future wife.

June 15, 1215

At Runnymede, King John signs Magna Carta.

June 14, 1949

Albert II becomes first monkey in space.

June 13, 1381

Wat Tyler leads Peasants' Revolt into London.

June 12, 1967

Supreme Court strikes down bans on interracial marriage.

June 11, 1920

First use of the term "smoke-filled room".

June 10, 1190


June 9, 68 A.D.

Roman Emperor Nero commits suicide.

June 8, 632

The Prophet Muhammad dies in Medina.

June 7, 1975

First Cricket World Cup begins in England.

June 6, 1894

Colorado state militia protects striking mine workers.

June 5, 1989

The Tank Man stands alone in Tiananmen Square.

June 4, 1942

American and Japanese forces meet in the Battle of Midway.

June 3, 1888

Mighty Casey strikes out for the first time.

June 2, 1886

Grover Cleveland, sitting president, weds Frances Folsom.

June 1, 1660

Mary Dyer hanged for violating Massachusetts Quaker ban.

May 31, 1578

First stone of Pont Neuf laid in Paris.

May 30, 1431

The English execute French heroine Joan of Arc.

May 29, 1913

Stravinsky's Rite of Spring sparks outrage in Paris.

May 28, 1754

George Washington, 22, sparks French & Indian War.

May 27, 1703

Tsar Peter the Great establishes Saint Petersburg.

May 26, 1857

Three months after his failed suit, Dred Scott is freed.

May 25, 1738

PA & MD declare a truce in the Conojocular War.

May 24, 1883

Brooklyn Bridge opens.

May 23, 1934

Bonnie & Clyde ambushed and killed

May 22, 1377

Pope Gregory XI denounces early reformer John Wycliffe.

May 21, 293

Tetrarchy – rule by four – begins in Roman Empire.

May 20, 1899

First American speeding citation: 12 mph in New York City.

May 19, 1828

J.Q. Adams signs "Tariff of Abominations"

May 18, 1096

Crusaders massacre 800 Jews in Worms, Germany.

May 17, 1990

WHO removes homosexuality from its list of mental disorders.

May 16, 1868

President Andrew Johnson is acquitted by one vote.

May 15, 1648

Treaty of Münster (part of Peace of Westphalia) signed.

May 14, 1879

First indentured Indians arrive in Fiji.

May 13, 1780

Tennessee frontiersmen signed the Cumberland Compact.

May 12, 907

Tang dynasty ends; China falls apart.

May 11, 1813

Explorers from Sydney leave in search of farmland.

May 10, 1893

Tomatoes are vegetables, says the Supreme Court.

May 9, 1662

First recorded "Mr. Punch" puppet show.

May 8, 1877

The Westminster Kennel Club holds its first dog show.

May 7, 1915

German U-boat sinks Lusitania, killing 1,198.

May 6, 1536

Incas begin unsuccessful ten-month seige of Cuzco, their captured capital.

May 5, 1934

The Three Stooges make their debut in Woman Haters.

May 4, 1886

Haymarket Riots: An unknown person throws a bomb at a labor rally in Chicago.

May 3, 1960

The Fantasticks has its first of 17,162 consecutive performances – a duration of nearly 42 years.

May 2, 1998

The European Central Bank names the 11 countries in the "first wave" of the euro.

May 1, 1865

Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay form the Triple Alliance, a secret agreement against Paraguay.

April 30, 1939

FDR, opening the New York World's Fair, becomes the first president to appear on television.

April 29, 2004

Oldsmobile produces its last car, ending a legacy of more than a century.

April 28, 1789

Fletcher Christian leads a mutiny against Captain William Bligh of the HMS Bounty.

April 27, 711

Tariq ibn-Ziyad and his army of Moors land on the southern coast of Spain.

April 26, 1960

South Korean president Syngman Rhee is forced to resign after popular protests.

April 25, 1792

Bon anniversaire, La Marseillaise ! The French national anthem is written overnight.

April 24, 1915

Ottoman authorities round up around 250 Armenian intellectuals, beginning a genocide.

April 23, 1910

"The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena," says Teddy Roosevelt.

April 22, 1500

Portuguese explorer Pedro Cabral sees the coast of Brazil for the first time.

April 21, 753 BC

Romulus kills his twin brother, Remus, and founds the city of Rome.

April 20, 1828

Frenchman René Caillié enters the fabled city of Timbuktu – and later returns to Europe.

April 19, 1927

Mae West is sentenced to 10 days in jail for "corruption of the morals of youth."

April 18, 1506

Construction of the new St. Peter's Basilica begins; it will take 120 years to complete.

April 17, 1397

Chaucer's Canterbury Tales make their debut at the court of Richard II.

April 16, 1912

American Harriet Quimby becomes the first woman to fly over the English Channel.
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