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Today in History

1825
Independence Day in Bolivia
1881
Penicillin discoverer and Nobel Laureate, Sir Alexander Fleming born in Lochfield, Scotland
1890
Cy Young pitches first game
1911
Emmy Award winning actress Lucille Ball born in Jamestown, New York
1917
Author, composer, singer and actor, Robert Mitchum born in Bridgeport, Connecticut
1928
Artist,film maker, and author, Andy Warhol born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
1945
Atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima
1951
Emmy Award nominated actress, Catherine Hicks born in Scottsdale, Arizona
1962
Independence Day in Jamaica
1970
Director and screen writer M. Night Shyamalan born in Mahé, India
258
St. Sixtus II, pope from 257 to 258, died. He was beheaded while celebrating services in a cemetary.
317
Flavius Julius Constantius, Eastern Roman Emperor born
523
St. Hormisdas, pope from 514 to 523, died. He effected the union of Orthodox and Catholic churches.
1162
Death of Ramon Beringer, Count of Barcelona and husband of Petronilla, Queen of Castile
1181
Supernova observed by Chinese & Japanese astronomers
1187
Beirut falls to Saladin
1221
St. Dominic, Spanish founder of the Order of Friar Preachers (Dominicians), died at about the age of 50. The Dominician Order combines the contemplative life of the monk with the active work of the evangelist.
1223
Coronation of Louis VIII as King of France
1458
Calixtus III, pope from 1455 to 1458, died.
1480
Alfonso of Portugal cedes Canary Islands to Ferdinand & Isabella of Spain by the Treaty of Alcova
1504
Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury. As the second Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury (1559-1575), he tried to set limits to reformers' doctrines. He was against Puritanism, calling it "mutinous individualism." born
1514
Marriage of Margaret of England, widowed Queen of Scotland, to the Earl of Angus
1605
Bulstrode Whitelocke, English republican lawyer, politician born
1623
Death of Anne Shakespeare, nee Hathaway
1628
Execution of Johannes Junius of Bamberg, as a witch.
1630
Francis Higginson dies. He was a nonconformist Anglican clergyman. He settled in Salem, Mass. and drew up a church covenant and a confession of faith.
1644
Louise de la Valliere born
1651
Francois de S. Fenelon, Archbishop of Cambrai from 1695 to 1715. born
1697
Charles VII, Holy Roman emperor (1742-45). born
1787
The Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia began to debate the articles contained in a draft of the United States Constitution.
1801
Presbyterian evangilist Barton W. Stone called a week-long evangelical meeting in Kentucky. 25,000 people attended.
1806
The Holy Roman Empire went out of existence as Emperor Francis the First abdicated.
1807
Thomas Atkinson, episcopal prelate and Bishop of North Carolina. He was instrumental in reuniting northern and southern churches after the Civil War. born
1809
Lord Alfred Tennyson, poet laureate of England. born
1821
Anglican hymn writer, Edward H. Plumptre ("Rejoice, ye pure in heart") born
1825
Bolivia declared its independence from Peru.
1881
Sir Alexander Fleming, discovered penicillin (Nobel 1954) born
1881
Actor Leo Carrillo (The Cisco Kid, Pancho Villa Returns, One Night in the Tropics, Phantom of the Opera) born
1883
Scott Nearing, American sociologist, pacifist, author. born
1890
Denton "Cy" Young pitched his first major-league baseball game.
1890
Convicted murderer William Kemmler became the first person to be executed in the electric chair as he was put to death at Auburn State Prison in New York.
1910
Movie director Charles Crichton ("A Fish Called Wanda") born
1911
Lucille Ball , comedian, actor. born
1917
Robert Mitchum, actor. born
1922
Entrepreneur Sir Freddie Laker born
1926
Warner Brothers premiered its "Vitaphone" sound-on-disc movie system in New York.
1926
Gertrude Ederle of New York became the first American woman to swim the English Channel, in about 14 and a-half hours.
1928
Andy Warhol (Warhola) (filmmaker, pop artist "In the future everyone will be famous for fifteen minutes.") born
1930
41-year-old New York Supreme Court Justice Joseph Force Crater mysteriously disappeared. He was never seen nor heard from again and was declared legally dead in 1939.
1930
Actress-singer Abbey Lincoln born
1938
Actor-director Peter Bonerz born
1938
Actor-director Paul Bartel ("Eating Raoul") born
1940
Columbia Records cut the prices of its 12-inch classical records. The records were priced to sell at $1. Within two weeks, RCA Victor followed thereby ending a record-buying slump brought on by disinterested consumers.
1942
Queen Wilhemina of the Netherlands became the first reigning queen to address a joint session of Congress, telling lawmakers that despite Nazi occupation, her people's motto remained, "No surrender."
1943
Actor Michael Anderson Junior born
1945
During World War Two, the United States dropped an atomic bomb (named "Little Boy") on Hiroshima, Japan, killing an estimated 140,000 people in the first use of a nuclear weapon in
1945
Ken Norton, heavyweight boxer. born
1950
Actor Dorian Harewood born
1951
Actress Catherine Hicks born
1952
Rock singer Pat McDonald (Timbuk 3) born
1952
Satchel Paige, at age 46, became the oldest pitcher to complete a major-league baseball game. Paige shutout the Detroit 1-to-0 in a 12-inning game.
1956
The DuMont Television Network makes its last broadcast, a boxing match
1956
Actress Stepfanie Kramer born
1958
Rhythm-and-blues singer Randy DeBarge born
1962
Jamaica became an independent dominion within the British Commonwealth.
1964
Country singers Peggy and Patsy Lynn born
1965
David Robinson (Olympic Gold Medalist Team) born
1965
President Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act.
1968
Country singer Lisa Stewart born
1969
Willie "Pops" Stargell, of the Pittsburgh Pirates, hit the first fair ball to completely sail out of Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. Stargell's blast measured 506 feet from home plate.
1972
Singer Geri Halliwell (formerly of the Spice Girls) born
1976
Actress Soleil Moon Frye born
1978
Pope Paul the Sixth died at Castel Gandolfo at age 80.
1981
Firefighters in Indianapolis, Indiana, returned from the scene of a false alarm to find their own firehouse ablaze. Station 14 was extensively damaged from a grease fire.
1984
Carl Lewis won his second gold medal of the 1984 Summer Olympics, this one in the long jump.
1985
Tens of thousands of Japanese and foreigners gathered in Hiroshima to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the atomic bombing.
1986
William J. Schroeder died after living 620 days with the "Jarvik Seven" artificial heart.
1987
President Reagan's new Central America peace initiative ran into problems as the US and Nicaragua openly disagreed on procedures for a negotiated settlement.
1988
Iraq's president said his country would agree to a cease-fire with Iran provided the Iranians promised to hold direct talks immediately after the truce took effect.
1989
Jaime Paz Zamora was inaugurated as president of Bolivia.
1990
The U.N. Security Council ordered a worldwide embargo on trade with Iraq to punish the Baghdad regime for invading Kuwait.
1990
The president of Pakistan dismissed Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and her government, alleging rampant corruption, and declared a state of emergency.
1991
Veteran CBS-TV newsman Harry Reasoner died in Norwalk, Connecticut, at age 68.
1991
The Justice Department joined forces with the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue in fighting a federal judge's order to keep two abortion clinics in Wichita, Kansas, open.
1992
President Bush granted full diplomatic recognition to the former Yugoslav republics of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Slovenia and Croatia, the same day Britain's Independent Television News showed videotape of emaciated detainees at a pair of Serb prison camps.
1992
Americans led by Carl Lewis swept the long jump at the Barcelona Summer Olympics, while Kevin Young won the 400 hurdles and Mike Marsh the 200 meters.
1993
Morihiro Hosokawa was elected the new prime minister of Japan by the country's lower house of Parliament.
1993
Congress completed action on a $6.2 billion flood relief package.
1993
Louis Freeh won Senate confirmation to be director of the FBI.
1993
The US Senate joined the House in passing President Clinton's budget plan, 51-to-50, with a tie-breaking vote cast by Vice President Al Gore.
1994
In Wedowee, Alabama, an apparent arson fire destroyed Randolph County High Schools, which had been the focus of tensions over the principal's stand against interracial dating.
1995
Police in Colombia captured Miguel Rodriguez Orejuela, the reputed co-leader of the Cali drug cartel.
1995
Thousands of people in Hiroshima, Japan, set glowing lanterns afloat in rivers, capping a day of tributes on the 50th anniversary of the atomic bombing.
1996
Officials announced the Air Force had punished 16 officers in connection with the crash that killed Commerce Secretary Ron Brown and 34 others the previous April..
1997
Korean Air Flight 801 crashed into a hillside a short distance from Guam International Airport, killing 228 of the 254 aboard the Boeing 747.
1997
Ending years of impassioned rivalry, Apple Computer and Microsoft agreed to share technology in a deal giving Microsoft a stake in Apple's survival.
1998
Former White House intern Monica Lewinsky spent 8 1/2 hours testifying before a grand jury about her relationship with President Clinton.
1998
The House Government Reform and Oversight Committee voted to cite Attorney General Janet Reno for contempt of Congress for her refusal to turn over reports recommending that she seek an independent counsel to investigate campaign fund-raising.
1999
Tony Gwynn became the 22nd major leaguer to reach 3,000 hits.
1999
In Canton, Texas, a 36-year-old woman who faces lifelong heart problems she blames on the diet drug combination fen-phen was awarded $23.3 million in the first such lawsuit to reach a jury. (The case was settled for less than a tenth of that amount during an appeal.)
2000
Workers at Verizon, the nation's largest local telephone company, went on an 18-day strike over working conditions and union representation.
2005
Senior citizen group seeks recovery of Medicare expenses from U.S. cigarette makers
2005
Finnish police isolate ports in Helsinki
2005
Robin Cook dead after collapsing
2005
Plane ditches into sea near Sicily
2006
American cyclist Floyd Landis tested positive for excessive levels of testosterone in second test
2006
Jenson Button wins Hungarian Grand Prix
2006
Reuters retracts image; suspends employee due to threat
2006
Syrian minister rejects proposed U.N. resolution
2006
British soldier killed in southern Afghanistan
2006
Canadian held in China faces execution
2006
Iran bans Shirin Ebadi-led human rights group
2006
Vaccine targets obesity in rats
2006
Castro recovering following surgery: Cuban officials
2006
No full recount in Mexican election
2006
Lebanon fighting escalates as UN debates ceasefire
2006
I'm staying for at least a year: British PM Tony Blair
2006
Participant claims drug trial gave him cancer
2007
MLB: Tom Glavine wins 300th game
2007
Thai police to wear 'Hello Kitty' armbands as punishment
2007
Six miners trapped in Utah mine after possible earthquake
2007
Politician denies claims he smoked cannabis while ambassador
2007
2007/08 DFB Cup: FC Bayern Munich beats Burghausen in shootout to advance
2008
Magnitude 6.0 earthquake in China kills three, injures dozens
2008
Paris Hilton mocks John McCain presidential ad
2008
Mauritania president Abdallahi arrested in coup
2008
English Football: Manchester United News for August 6, 2008
2008
Football: Melbourne Victory win A-League Pre-Season Cup on penalties
2008
Group claims activists held in China after free Tibet protests
2008
Kevin Pietersen MBE chosen as new England Cricket captain
2008
American presumed dead for 30 years found healthy
2008
Nine presumed dead in helicopter crash in California, United States
2009
Sonia Sotomayor confirmed in US Senate vote
2009
Eviction notice served on Vestas occupiers
2009
2009-10 A-League football: Central Coast Mariners defeat Melbourne Victory in opener
2009
American film director John Hughes dies at age 59
2010
Spreading floods in Pakistan worsen, at least 1600 dead
2010
Football: Coach of North Korea condemned to hard labor
2011
Sitcom star Roseanne Barr announces run for U.S. president
2011
Ralph Nader: Obama will likely face challenge in Democratic primaries
2011
Juno spacecraft bound for Jupiter
2012
Sitcom star Roseanne Barr chosen as presidential nominee of Peace and Freedom Party
2013
Illinois high schools now required to buy insurance for athletes
2013
Peter Capaldi named twelfth Doctor Who
2013
Islamabad on red alert for possible terrorist attack

In the early days of Unix, a date-tagged list of historical events was used by system administrators to add some interest to the system's Message of the Day. Whenever users logged in they would be presented with the latest system notices, perhaps some mildly amusing quotes and one or two lines of historical events, based on the current date.

Today in History (UNIX calendar) uses some of the entries from the original library but is updated with current events as well. Instead of plain text, each entry is now formatted in HTML and each day may include one or more icons of historical figures or celebrities.

Other things unique to the UNIX calendar are references to dates found in fictional literature such as Lord of the Rings, perhaps undue emphasis on people and events that were part of popular culture in the 70's and technical minutiae about computers and operating systems that might not be found in other places.

In association with Amazon, this symbol is a link to related products at amazon.com. Any proceeds resulting from the sales of these products are used to defray the cost of maintaining the Today in History site and editorial efforts.

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