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Today in History

1913
Coast guard seaman, and Emmy Award nominated actor, Lloyd Bridges born in San Leandro, California
1929
Baptist minister, political activist, and Nobel Laureate civil rights leader, Martin Luther King Jr born in Atlanta, Georgia
1937
Oscar winning actress, Margaret O'Brien born in San Diego, California
1951
Actress, singer and guitarist, Charo born in Murcia, Spain
1967
Green Bay wins first ever Superbowl
1990
AT&T hit by cascading switch failure
1999
45 killed in Kosovo by Yugoslav police
2001
Wikipedia goes online
2009
Airline pilot "Sully" Sullenberger safely makes a deadstick emergency landing on the Hudson river
588
BC
Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon lays siege to Jerusalem under Zedekiah's reign. The siege lasts until July 23, 586 BC.
69
Otho seizes power in Rome, proclaiming himself Emperor of Rome, but rules for only three months before committing suicide.
1559
Elizabeth I is crowned queen of England in Westminster Abbey, London.
1582
Russia cedes Livonia and Estonia to Poland.
1759
The British Museum opens.
1777
American Revolutionary War: New Connecticut (present day Vermont) declares its independence.
1782
Superintendent of Finance Robert Morris goes before the U.S. Congress to recommend establishment of a national mint and decimal coinage.
1822
Greek War of Independence: Demetrius Ypsilanti is elected president of the legislative assembly.
1844
University of Notre Dame receives its charter from the state of Indiana.
1865
Fort Fisher North Carolina falls to the Union, thus cutting off the last major seaport of the Confederacy.
1870
A political cartoon for the first time symbolizes the United States Democratic Party with a donkey ("A Live Jackass Kicking a Dead Lion" by Thomas Nast for Harper's Weekly).
1889
The Coca-Cola Company, then known as the Pemberton Medicine Company, is originally incorporated in Atlanta, Georgia.
1892
James Naismith publishes the rules of basketball.
1908
The Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority becomes the first Greek-letter organization founded and established by African-American college women.
1919
Boston Molasses Disaster: A large molasses tank in Boston, Massachusetts, bursts and a wave of molasses rushes through the streets, killing 21 people and injuring 150 others.
1919
Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht, two of the most prominent socialists in Germany, are tortured and murdered by the Freikorps.
1936
The first building to be completely covered in glass is completed in Toledo, Ohio (the building is built for the Owens-Illinois Glass Company).
1943
The world's largest office building, The Pentagon, is dedicated in Arlington, Virginia.
1943
World War II: The Soviet counter-offensive at Voronezh begins.
1947
The brutalized corpse of Elizabeth Short ("The Black Dahlia") is found in Leimert Park, Los Angeles, California.
1949
Chinese Civil War: The Chinese Communist Party forces take over Tianjin from the Nationalist Government.
1951
Ilse Koch, "The Bitch of Buchenwald", wife of the commandant of the Buchenwald concentration camp, is sentenced to life imprisonment by a court in West Germany.
1966
The government of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa in Nigeria is overthrown in a military coup d’état.
1967
The first Super Bowl is played in Los Angeles, California. Green Bay Packers defeat Kansas City Chiefs 35-10
1969
The Soviet Union launches Soyuz 5.
1970
Muammar al-Qaddafi is proclaimed premier of Libya.
1970
After a 32-month fight for independence from Nigeria, Biafra surrenders.
1973
Vietnam War: Citing progress in peace negotiations, President Richard Nixon announces the suspension of offensive action in North Vietnam.
1974
Dennis Rader aka the BTK Killer kills his first victims by binding, torturing and murdering Joseph, Joseph II, Josephine and Julie Otero in their house.
1976
Gerald Ford's would-be assassin, Sara Jane Moore, is sentenced to life in prison.
1977
The Kälvesta air disaster kills 22 people, the worst air crash in Sweden's history.
1986
The Living Seas opens at EPCOT Center in Walt Disney World, Florida.
1990
AT&T's long distance telephone network suffers a cascade switching failure.
1991
The United Nations deadline for the withdrawal of Iraqi forces from occupied Kuwait expires, preparing the way for the start of Operation Desert Storm.
1992
The international community recognizes the independence of Slovenia and Croatia from the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
1993
Salvatore Riina, the Mafia boss known as 'The Beast', is arrested in Sicily after three decades as a fugitive
1999
The Racak incident: 45 Albanians in the Kosovo village of Racak are killed by Yugoslav security forces.
2001
Wikipedia, a free Wiki content encyclopedia, goes online.
2005
ESA's SMART-1 lunar orbiter discovers elements such as calcium, aluminum, silicon, iron, and other surface elements on the moon.
2005
Man is waiting for 139 days in front of theater for "Star Wars" movie
2005
IBM Releases 500 patents to open source community
2005
Finland, Canada named among world's most-fit nations
2005
Graner found guilty of mistreatment at Abu Ghraib
2005
Capture of FARC member creates crisis between Venezuela and Colombia
2005
An intense solar flare blasts X-rays across the solar system.
2006
Ottawa 67's lose to Saginaw Spirit, 7-5
2006
Finnish Presidential election held. Niinistö and Halonen goes to the next round
2006
US Justice Department sues American Airlines on behalf of reservists
2006
Protests erupt in Pakistan over US air strike
2006
Sunderland v Chelsea Jan 15th 2006
2006
Chile elects first woman President
2006
US Senators, EU voice support for Iran sanctions
2006
Stardust lands in Utah successfully
2006
Israeli PM Ariel Sharon to undergo more surgery
2007
Bollywood stars Aishwarya Rai and Abhishek Bachchan engaged
2007
Arnold Schwarzenegger to visit Canada
2007
Saddam's co-defendant decapitated while being hanged
2007
Internet pirates want their own nation
2007
Hydrofoil collides with cargo ship near Sicily
2007
Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti, former Iraqi intelligence chief and half-brother of Saddam Hussein, and Awad Hamed al-Bandar, former chief judge of the Revolutionary Court, are executed by hanging in Iraq.
2007
New Zealand Commerce Commission investigating Australian company
2008
Malaysian government warns citizens about Uncyclopedia
2008
Former East Timor Prime Minister calls for Xanana Gusmão to resign
2008
Party involving 500 youths in Australia causes A$20,000 in damages
2008
Taliban attacks hotel in Kabul, seven killed
2008
Oscar Foreign Film race narrowed to nine films
2008
Bush urges OPEC to raise output whilst in Saudi Arabia
2008
Kenya's parliament meets for first time since disputed election
2008
Bobby Jindal sworn in as governor of Louisiana
2008
US to sell precision-guided bombs to Saudi Arabia
2009
Capt. Chesley B. "Sully" Sullenberger glided an Airbus A320 with 150 passengers and 5 crew to a safe landing in the Hudson River after striking a flock of birds had shut down both engines
2009
Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Day 20
2009
Canadian energy company offers reward for info on pipeline bombings
2009
US Airways Flight 1549 makes an emergency landing into the Hudson River shortly after takeoff from LaGuardia Airport in New York City. All passengers and crew members survive.
2009
Main UN compound in Gaza shelled with 'white phosphorus'
2009
US Airways jet makes emergency landing in river by New York City
2010
Crossing guard killed by truck in Glasgow, Scotland
2010
Eleven year-old driver kills family in collision
2010
Sixteen civilians killed by bomber in southern Afghanistan
2010
Haitian earthquake: in pictures
2010
Haiti relief efforts: in depth
2010
Rush Limbaugh and Pat Robertson under fire for remarks about earthquake in Haiti
2010
NBA star Gilbert Arenas pleads guilty to gun possession, could face six months in prison
2010
Republican leads race to fill Ted Kennedy's vacated US Senate seat
2011
State of emergency declared in Tunisia
2011
US Marine killed after vehicle capsizes, sinks in Oceanside Harbor, California

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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