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Today in History

1809
Renowned poet and author, Edgar Allan Poe born in Boston, Massachusetts
1923
Emmy and Golden Globe Award winning actress, Jean Stapleton born in New York City
1943
Songwriter and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame singer, Janis Joplin born in Port Arthur, Texas
1944
Singer and actress, Shelley Fabares born in Santa Monica, California
1946
Philanthropist, actress, Grammy Award winning songwriter and singer, Dolly Parton born in Sevierville, Tennessee
1954
Actress, singer and songwriter, Katey Sagal born in Hollywood, California
1977
Snow falls in Miami, Florida
1983
Apple releases the Lisa Computer
1993
IBM announces $4.97 billion loss for 1992
2000
Seton Hall University fire kills three students
2038
32-bit UNIX Epoch ends at 03:14:07 UTC
1160
Kidnapping of the retired Japanese Emperor
1419
In the Hundred Years War between England and France, the French city of Rouen surrendered to Henry V thus completing his conquest of Normandy.
1523
Ulrich Zwingli published his "67 Articles"
1544
Francis II, King of France born
1568
Death of Miles Coverdale, 80, publisher of the first printed English Bible.
1576
Hans Sachs died. He was a master singer in the city of Nuremburg and the inspiration for Wagner's opera, "Die Meistersinger."
1629
Death of Abbas, Shah of Persia
1648
Charles I, King of England, brought to trial
1736
Scottish engineer James Watt, inventor of the steam engine born
1807
Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee born
1807
Robert E. Lee, the commander-in-chief of the Confederate armies, was born in Stratford, Virginia.
1809
American short story writer and poet Edgar Allan Poe born
1813
English metallurgist Henry Bessemer born
1825
Ezra Daggett and Thomas Kensett of New York City patented a canning process to preserve salmon, oysters and lobsters.
1839
Paul Cezanne, painter born
1853
Verdi's "Il Trovatore" premiered in Rome drew a big crowd despite urban flooding.
1861
Georgia seceded from the Union.
1899
Britain and Egypt established joint control over Sudan.
1901
Queen Victoria of England is stricken by paralysis.
1902
The Imperial Government of China declares that it cannot meet reparation payments for the Boxer Rebellion.
1903
1st regular transatlantic radio broadcast between US & England.
1903
A new bicycle race called the Tour de France was announced.
1905
U.S. Secretary of State John Hay secures an agreement with Britain, France and Italy to prevent the partition of China following the Russo-Japanese War.
1906
Luke Wright becomes the 1st U.S. Ambassador to Japan.
1908
Comic singer Ish Kabibble (Merwyn Bogue) He sang and played trumpet with Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge; big bandleader; combo: The Shy Guys born
1911
John Philip Sousa was conducting a concert of his music in Britain when part of the stage collapsed and he fell through it. People who were in the audience reported that Sousa simply climbed back onto the stage, said, ``We will now continue,'' and did.
1915
The first casualties to result from an air raid over Britain occurred when a Zeppelin dropped six bombs on Great Yarmouth. Two people died and three were injured.
1915
George Claude, of Paris, France, patented the neon tube, advertising sign.
1917
Actor-singer John Raitt born
1922
A geological survey indicated that America's oil supply would be depleted in 20 years.
1922
Actor Guy Madison born
1923
The French announce the invention of a new gun with a range of 56 miles.
1923
Actress Jean (Murray) Stapleton Beloved as Edith Bunker, the "dingbat", good-hearted wife of Archie Bunker on "All in the Family" (CBS, 1971-79). born
1926
Actor Fritz Weaver (Holocaust, Marathon Man, Black Sunday) born
1931
Former P-B-S newsman Robert MacNeil born
1931
Actress Tippi (Natalie) Hedren (The Birds, Deadly Spygames, Harrad Experiment, Pacific Heights) born
1931
The Wickersham Committee issues a report asking for revisions in the dry law, but no repeal.
1932
Movie director Richard Lester born
1935
Actress Tippi Hedren born
1937
Howard Hughes flies from Los Angeles to New York in seven hours and 22 minutes.
1939
Singer Phil Everly of The Everly Brothers with brother, Don. (Bye Bye Love, Wake Up Little Susie, All I Have to Do is Dream, Bird Dog, Cathy's Clown) born
1942
Actor-singer Michael Crawford born
1943
Singer Janis Joplin (Piece of My Heart, How Hard It Is, Pearl, Me and Bobby McGee) born
1944
Actress Shelley Fabares born
1944
The federal government relinquished control of the nation's railroads following settlement of a wage dispute.
1946
Country singer Dolly Parton born
1946
ABC newswoman Ann Compton born
1949
Singer Robert Palmer born
1949
The Chiang Government moves the capital of China to Canton.
1950
Communist Chinese leader Mao recognizes the Republic of Vietnam. 1953" Sixty-eight percent of all TV sets in the U.S. were tuned to CBS-TV, as Lucy Ricardo, of I Love Lucy, gave birth to a baby boy. In real life she actually gave birth to "Little Ricky" following the script to the letter. The audience for the program was greater than that watching the inauguration of President Dwight D. Eisenhower the following day. In fact, the Lucille Ball `baby' story knocked the inauguration off the front page of many major newspapers.
1951
Singer Harry McGilberry (Temptations) born
1953
Actor Desi Arnaz Junior born
1955
A presidential news conference was filmed for television for the first time, with permission from President Eisenhower.
1955
The board game Scrabble was introduced.
1956
Actress Katey Sagal born
1957
Philadelphia comedian, Ernie Kovacs, became a major star, when he was able to pull off the challenge of doing a half-hour TV show without saying a single word of dialogue.
1957
Reggae musician Mickey Virtue (UB40) born
1959
SMOKE GETS IN YOUR EYES by The Platters peaked at #1 on the pop singles chart.
1961
Actor Paul McCrane born
1961
Actor William Ragsdale Actor William Ragsdale is 39 His best known feature film is the popular teen horror comedy "Fright Night" (1985) where he literally plays the boy-next-door - in this case, next door to a vampire born
1966
Tennis player Stefan Edberg born
1966
Indira Gandhi was elected prime minister of India.
1969
Singer Trey Lorenz born
1970
President Nixon nominated G. Harrold Carswell to the Supreme Court; however, the nomination was defeated because of controversy over Carswell's past racial views.
1971
Actor Shawn Wayans born
1971
Rock singer-musician John Wozniak (Marcy Playground) born
1971
HELTER SKELTER by The Beatles was played at the Charles Manson trial.
1971
Officials report that the U.S. is flying helicopter missions for Laos troops.
1971
Actress Ruby Keeler made her comeback in the play, "No, No Nanette", which opened at the 46th Street Theatre in New York City. Keeler played the role of Sue Smith in the revival of the 1925 hit musical.
1977
President Ford pardoned Iva Toguri D'Aquino, who had been convicted of treason for her World War II Japanese propaganda broadcasts as Tokyo Rose.
1977
Jimmy Carter's presidential inaugural festivities included a concert featuring Aretha Franklin, Linda Ronstadt and Loretta Lynn on stage...and John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Paul Simon and Gregg Allman in the audience.
1979
Former Attorney General John N. Mitchell was released on parole after serving 19 months at a federal prison in Alabama.
1980
Michael Jackson received his first gold record...for ``Off the Wall.''
1981
The United States and Iran signed an agreement paving the way for the release of 52 Americans held hostage for more than 14 months.
1982
Actress Jodie Sweetin ("Full House") born
1983
Klaus Barbie, notorious SS chief of Lyon in Nazi-occupied France, was arrested in Bolivia.
1987
Amy Carter, daughter of former President Jimmy Carter, was charged with trespassing and disorderly conduct in a demonstration at the University of Massachusetts.
1988
State Farm Insurance Company in California announced it had agreed to pay $1.3 million to settle a sex discrimination lawsuit brought by three former employees.
1989
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted unanimously to recommend that the full Senate approve the nomination of James A. Baker to be secretary of state.
1989
President Reagan pardoned George Steinbrenner for providing Richard Nixon with illegal funds.
1990
Arthur J. Goldberg, former Supreme Court justice, labor secretary and US Ambassador to the United Nations, was found dead in his Washington apartment at age 81.
1991
During the Gulf War, Israel's anti-missile force was boosted by additional Patriot missile batteries and U.S. crews. A second Iraqi missile attack caused 29 injuries in Tel Aviv. Allied forces began bombarding Iraq's elite Republican Guard.
1993
Celebrities ranging from Barbra Streisand to Michael Jackson to a reunited Fleetwood Mac threw a nationally televised pre-inaugural bash for president-elect Bill Clinton.
1993
Attorney General-designate Zoe Baird apologized to the Senate Judiciary Committee for hiring illegal aliens as domestic help. The first American combat troops flew home from their humanitarian mission in Somalia.
1994
President Clinton visited quake-stricken Los Angeles, where he pledged fast and aggressive federal help.
1994
Tonya Harding's former husband, Jeff Gillooly, was arrested and charged with conspiracy in the attack two weeks earlier on skater Nancy Kerrigan.
1995
Russian troops regained control of the presidential palace in Grozny, the capital of the breakaway republic of Chechnya.
1996
The Bosnian peace agreement suffered its first setback as a planned nationwide prisoner release fell far short of its goal.
1996
Four-day hijack of the Black Sea ferry Avrasya by pro-Chechen gunmen ended near Istanbul without a shot being fired with the surrender of the attackers who had threatened to blow up themselves and their 200 hostages.
1997
Yasser Arafat returned to Hebron for the first time in more than 30 years, joining 60,000 Palestinians in celebrating the handover of the last West Bank city from Israeli control.
1997
"The English Patient" won best picture and "Evita" won in the category of best movie musical or comedy at the Golden Globes.
1997
Albania, riot police beat demonstrators demanding restitution for money lost in pyramid schemes.
1998
During a ceremony in Atlanta commemorating the Martin Luther King Junior holiday, Vice President Gore announced that the Clinton administration would propose increasing spending on civil rights by 86 million dollars.
1998
"Rockabilly" pioneer Carl Perkins died in Jackson, Tennessee, at age 65.
1999
President Clinton delivered his State of the Union address, in which he proposed to protect Social Security by using huge budget surpluses and announced the government would sue the tobacco industry for smokers' health costs. Hours earlier, at the president's impeachment trial in the Senate, White House Counsel Charles Ruff opened the defense with ridiculous ringing statements of Clinton's innocence.
2000
Michael Skakel, a nephew of Robert F. Kennedy, was charged with bludgeoning to death 15-year-old Martha Moxley in Greenwich, Conn., in 1975, when he was also 15.
2000
Bettino Craxi, Italy's longest-serving premier during the postwar years, died in Tunisia at age 65.
2000
Actress Hedy Lamarr was found dead in her Orlando, Fla., home; she was 86.
2000
A dormitory fire at Seton Hall University in New Jersey killed three people and injured 62.
2005
Washington state lawmaker looks to outlaw handheld cell phones while driving
2005
2005/01/19 Pacific Northwest soaked with "Tropical Punch" Pacific Northwest soaked with
2005
Romanian economy booms in 2004
2005
Bucharest to host its first ever CowParade
2005
Annual Islamic pilgrimage takes place
2005
Heart attack kills brother of Brazilian president
2005
Yahoo triples its quarterly profit on strong advertising revenue
2005
Research demonstrates GM crops can benefit wildlife
2005
UK soldiers go on trial for abusing Iraqi prisoners
2005
500 policemen seek drug dealers in Rio
2005
Marxist intellectuals support arrested FARC leader
2006
Stardust comet samples "visible to the naked eye"
2006
Corby's 20 year sentence reinstated
2006
Two-day bird flu conference draws $1.9 billion in pledges
2006
Al Jazeera airs new Osama Bin Laden tape
2006
Radical cleric Abu Hamza denies encouraging murder
2006
Berlin court issues provisional order against the Wikimedia Foundation
2006
Iraq asks United States to release 6 Iraqi female prisoners
2006
Dog falls on car and kills driver in Michigan
2006
New Horizons probe bound for Pluto on nine year journey
2006
New Zealand to send out bird flu brochures
2006
Errant monkeys draw the ire of Delhi court
2006
CNN hires three conservative commentators
2006
Brokerage executive linked to Livedoor deals found dead
2006
UK R&B singer Ms Dynamite sentenced for assault
2006
West Papua refugees sent to Australia's Christmas Island Detention Centre
2007
Turkish-Armenian journalist killed in Turkey
2007
Sewerage project starts in Pakistan
2007
Turkish homeless man burns to death after being neglected
2007
Intoxicated New Zealand policeman keeps job
2007
Google and publishing business to team up in future
2007
World's oldest living woman dies at age 115
2007
Canada beats USA 5-0 in ice hockey at World University Games
2007
Sri Lankan military liberates key town
2007
Consumer database of several major North American stores hacked
2007
Stabbing at Massachusetts high school leaves one dead
2007
H5N1 Avian Flu virus mutates; shows resistance to drug
2007
"Dr Dino" gets 10 years in prison after failure to pay taxes
2007
Philippine's human rights commission brands provincial capitol assault 'Overkill'
2007
US air force colonel claims he spotted UFOs over Arkansas
2008
Adam Aircraft suspends activities at Utah factory, lays off 300 workers amid financial difficulties
2008
Plane crash kills ten in Angola
2008
Mitt Romney and Hillary Clinton win Nevada Caucuses
2008
Man arrested in connection with Honolulu toddler death
2008
YouTube banned in Turkey once again
2008
George Bush proposes economic growth package worth up to US$150 billion
2008
Canada adds United States to list of countries that torture
2008
Users insert virus source code into Wikipedia pages
2008
Fire reported at One HSBC Center in downtown Buffalo, New York
2008
Israel closes Gaza crossings in response to rocket attacks
2009
Conficker computer worm infections soar
2009
Steelers, Cardinals win championship games to advance to Super Bowl XLIII
2009
US Senators push for DTV delay
2009
Seven dead, one missing, two survive French helicopter crash off Gabon coast
2009
Royal Bank of Scotland shares plummet
2010
Somali pirates release tanker after receiving millions of dollars in ransom
2010
Conservative Pinera wins Chile polls, opponent Frei concedes defeat
2010
France, Germany officials warn against using Internet Explorer
2010
Zimbabwe may face famine due to wilting crops, organisation says
2010
Woman returns home with Christmas turkey, a month after setting out
2010
Man who shot Pope released from prison in Turkey
2010
Highway billboard gives Moscow drivers an unexpected show
2010
US President Obama celebrates his first Martin Luther King Jr. Day while in office
2011
NASA astronaut Tim Kopra, crew member of upcoming mission, sustains injury
2011
Two students shot at Los Angeles school, suspect in custody
2012
Rick Perry withdraws from U.S. presidential race, endorses Gingrich
2012
US government, music industry websites taken offline in web attack
2012
Myanmar's pro-democracy leader Suu Kyi to contest in by-election
2013
US Navy ship damages Tubbataha Reef National Park

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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