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Today in History

1804
US Vice President Aaron Burr kills Secretary of Treasury Alexander Hamilton in a duel
1834
Avante-garde artist James Whistler born in Lowell, Massachusetts
1859
Dickens publishes A Tale of Two Cities
1920
Singer, author, photographer and Academy Award winning actor, Yul Brynner born in Vladivostok, Russia
1921
Independence Day in Mongolia
1956
Golden Globe and Emmy Award winning actress, Sela Ann Ward born in Meridian, Mississippi
1966
Cheerleader, Homecoming Queen and actress, Debbe Dunning born in Burbank, California
1975
Grammy Award winning Hip Hop artist, Lil' Kim born in Brooklyn, New York
472
Death of Anthemius, Emperor of the West
969
Death of St. Olga
1244
Displaced by the Mongols, the Khwarismian Turks take Jerusalem; 300 people escape
1276
Election of Pope Adrian V
1346
Charles IV chosen as Holy Roman Emperor
1346
Edward III of England lands in Normandy
1382
Death of Nicolas Oresme 1
1533
Clement VII excommunicated Henry VIII for divorcing Catherine of Aragon, and afterward marrying Anne Boleyn. Two years later, Henry broke with Rome and established the Anglican communion as the national religion of England.
1558
Robert Greene, Elizabethan dramatist (Friar Bacon) born
1593
Death of Guiseppe Arcimboldo, surrealist painter
1598
Founding of San Juan de los Caballeros, New Mexico
1613
Coronation of Michael I, Czar of Russia
1656
Ann Austin and Mary Fisher became the first Quakers to arrive in America andwere promptly arrested. Five weeks later, they were deported back to England.
1657
Frederik I, King of Prussia (1701-13) born
1697
Jean-Baptiste-Bourguignon d'Anville, French geographer/cartographer born
1754
Thomas Bowdler, Dr. Bowdler gave up his medical practice to practice surgery on the works of William Shakespeare, Edward Gibbon's History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, and then the Old Testament. born
1767
John Quincy Adams, sixth president of the United States (1825-1829) born
1798
The US Marine Corps was created by an act of Congress.
1804
Vice President Aaron Burr mortally wounded former Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton in a pistol duel near Weehawken, New Jersey.
1834
American painter James Whistler born
1864
Confederate forces led by General Jubal Early began an abortive invasion of Washington DC, turning back the next day.
1888
Pennsylvania's Monongehela River rises 32' after 24 hour rainfall
1899
Author E.B. White born
1914
Babe Ruth debuted in the major leagues with the Boston Red Sox. Ruth made $2,900 his rookie season. In only six years his paycheck was worth $125,000 when he became a member of the New York Yankees. He started out as a pitcher. If the American League's designated pitcher had been in effect we might not ever have learned of his hitting ability.
1918
Enrico Caruso bypassed opera for a short time to join the WWI effort. He recorded "Over There", the patriotic song written by George M. Cohan.
1920
Actor Yul Brynner born
1921
Mongolia gains independence from China (National Day)
1922
Actor Gene Evans born
1927
Actress Brett Somers panelist: Match Game P.M. born
1931
Actor Tab Hunter born
1934
President Roosevelt became the first chief executive to travel through the Panama Canal while in office.
1937
George Gershwin died while a Hollywood surgeon was trying to operate on his brain tumor. One of Gershwin's last words was to complain that movie mogul Sam Goldwyn had come to visit him, and complained that Gershwin was concentrating too much on writing serious music.
1943
Convicts at Wormwood Scrubs prison in London were treated to a recital. Peter Pears sang, Benjamin Britten accompanied on the piano, and Michael Tippett served as page turner. The latter composer, incidentally, was at that time doing time in the prison.
1945
The U. S. Army used napalm on Japanese forces on the island of Luzon in the Philippines. This is the first recorded use of Napalm.
1947
Singer Jeff Hanna (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band) born
1951
Singer Bonnie Pointer born
1952
Actor Stephen Lang of a Salesman. born
1952
Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower was nominated as the Republican presidential candidate, with Richard Nixon as his running mate. They were elected in November.
1953
Boxer Leon Spinks, who in 1978 won and then lost the heavyweight boxing title in fights with Muhammad Ali born
1955
The US Air Force Academy was dedicated at Lowry Air Base in Colorado. The first class included 306 cadets.
1956
Actress Sela Ward born
1957
Reggae singer Michael Rose (Black Uhuru) born
1957
Singer Peter Murphy (formerly with Bauhaus) born
1958
Actor Mark Lester ("Oliver!") born
1959
Singer Suzanne Vega born
1959
Rock guitarist Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) born
1962
1st transatlantic TV transmission via satellite (Telstar I).
1966
Actress Debbe Dunning ("Home Improvement") born
1967
Kenny Rogers formed The First Edition, just one day after he and members Thelma Camacho, Mike Settle and Terry Williams left The New Christy Minstrels.
1967
The Vatican reported that Albania had closed its last Roman Catholic church.
1975
Rapper Lil Kim born
1977
The Medal of Freedom was awarded posthumously to the Reverend Martin Luther King Junior in a White House ceremony.
1978
216 people were killed when a tanker truck overfilled with propylene gas exploded on a coastal highway south of Tarragona, Spain.
1979
The abandoned US space station "Skylab" made a spectacular return to Earth, burning up in the atmosphere and showering debris over the Indian Ocean and the Australian desert.
1981
Neva Rockefeller became the first woman ordered by the court to pay alimony to her husband.
1982
Rapper Lil' Zane born
1983
The Reagan administration filed its first school desegregation lawsuit, charging that Alabama's public colleges and universities were practicing segregation.
1983
An Ecuadorian jetliner crashed into a mountain and exploded, killing all 119 people aboard.
1984
Transportation Secretary Elizabeth Dole ordered that airbags or automatic seat belts be installed in cars beginning with some 1987 models unless states enacted laws requiring seat-belt use.
1985
Nolan Ryan, of the Houston Astros, became the first, major-league pitcher to earn 4,000 strikeouts in a career as he led the Astros to a 4-3 win over the New York Mets.
1985
Two explosions sank the Rainbow Warrior, flagship of the Greenpeace environmental activist group, in Auckland, New Zealand; killing a ship's photographer and launching an international uproar. France later acknowledged responsibility.
1986
An Air Force plane crashed in Sequoia National Forest in California. Experts speculated the plane was a radar-evading stealth fighter jet, a plane whose existence had yet to be officially confirmed.
1987
Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke won a third consecutive term, becoming the first Labor Party leader in the country's history to be elected to three straight terms in office.
1988
Nine people were killed when three gunmen attacked hundreds of tourists aboard a Greek cruise ship, the "City of Poros," which was steaming toward a marina in suburban Athens.
1989
Laurence Olivier, considered by many the finest English-speaking actor of his generation, died at age 82.
1989
The American League won the 60th All-Star Game, defeating the National League 5-3 in Anaheim, California.
1990
Leaders of the so-called "Group of Seven" nations concluded their summit in Houston by encouraging Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev to enact reforms in return for Western aid.
1991
A Nigerian Airlines jet carrying Muslim pilgrims crashed at the Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, international airport, killing all 261 people on board.
1991
A solar eclipse cast a blanket of darkness stretching 9,000 miles from Hawaii to South America, lasting nearly seven minutes in some places.
1992
Undeclared presidential hopeful Ross Perot, addressing the NAACP convention in Nashville, Tennessee, startled and offended his listeners by referring to the predominantly black audience as "you people."
1993
President Clinton wrapped up his visit to South Korea with a visit to the Demilitarized Zone separating South and North Korea; he then flew to Hawaii, where he placed a wreath at the site of the sunken battleship USS "Arizona" at Pearl Harbor.
1993
In Des Moines, Iowa, severe flooding shut down a water system serving 250,000 residents.
1994
Shawn Eckardt was sentenced in Portland, Oregon, to one and a-half years in prison for his role in the attack on figure skater Nancy Kerrigan.
1994
Haiti's army-backed regime ordered the expulsion of international human rights observers.
1994
President Clinton, on his first official visit to Germany, urged his hosts to take on a stronger leadership role in global affairs.
1995
The U.N.-designated "safe haven" of Srebrenica fell to Bosnian Serb forces.
1995
President Clinton announced the normalization of full diplomatic relations between the United States and Vietnam.
1996
An Air Force F-16 jet trying to make an emergency landing slammed into a house in Pensacola, Florida, setting the home on fire, killing a four-year-old boy and badly burning his mother. (The pilot ejected safely.)
1997
President Clinton was cheered by tens of thousands of people in Bucharest, Romania, where he raised hopes for NATO membership.
1997
Ninety-one tourists were killed when fire broke out at the Royal Jomtien Hotel in Pattaya, Thailand.
1998
Air Force Lieutenant Michael Blassie, a casualty of the Vietnam War, was laid to rest near his Missouri home, after the positive identification of his remains, which had been enshrined at the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington, Virginia.
1999
A U.S. Air Force cargo jet, braving Antarctic winter, swept down over the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Research Center to drop off emergency medical supplies for Dr. Jerri Nielsen, a physician at the center who had discovered a lump in her breast.
2000
A Middle East summit hosted by President Clinton opened at Camp David between Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.
2000
The American League defeated the National League 6-to-3 in the All-Star Game.
2000
Robert Runcie, the former archbishop of Canterbury, died in Hertfordshire, England, at age 78.
2000
The African Methodist Episcopal Church, the nation's oldest black church, elected the Reverend Vashti McKenzie of Baltimore its first female bishop.
2005
Hurricane Dennis makes landfall on Gulf Coast near Pensacola
2005
100 participate in Zagreb Pride
2005
Abbott labs ends dispute with Brazilian government over AIDS drug
2005
Australian PM promises to assist Corby
2005
Ryanair launches more Shannon Airport routes
2005
Meth use now USA's top drug problem, survey finds
2005
Worker's Party leader detained in Sao Paulo's airport with $100,000 hidden in his underpants
2005
Wild storms lash New South Wales South Coast
2005
BSkyB director joins Setanta
2005
Yankees defeat Indians, 9-4; win 7 of last 8 heading into the All-Star break
2005
German opposition launches election campaign
2005
Funding for new Museum of Liverpool approved
2005
Temperature in east Iceland reaches 25 degrees Celsius (77°F)
2005
First gay marriage in Spain takes place
2005
Fulton Fish Market leaves Manhattan after more than 180 years
2005
Republicans criticize Sen. Clinton for comparing Bush to Mad magazine character
2005
Gas explosion in Russian shopping center kills 24
2005
Man charged in vehicle death of Michigan woman
2005
David Ahenakew removed from the Order of Canada
2005
Remembering Srebrenice massacre
2006
Islamists win battle for Mogadishu
2006
Searchers of pig farm for pig digested human remains receive counseling
2006
25 more NZ police head off to East Timor
2006
Several blasts rock Mumbai commuter trains
2006
World Cup official attempts suicide
2006
White House reverses Geneva Conventions stance
2006
Microsoft ends support for Windows 98 and Me
2006
Canadian boy, sucked into water pump, loses feet
2006
Pink Floyd's Syd Barrett dies at age 60
2006
Portion of ceiling collapses in Boston tunnel
2007
Libyan court upholds death sentence for foreign medics in HIV case
2007
Police investigate Youtube video of two year old 'on ecstacy'
2007
Evolutionary biology labs at University of Colorado threatened
2007
The 24th Shin Kong Life Tower Run Up will promote Bananas of Taiwan
2007
PETA protests Burberry in White Plains, NY
2007
Legia receives ban; Rovers face Vetra
2007
Empty tower at Miami International Airport catches fire
2007
Canadian merchant Ed Mirvish Dies at 92
2007
Italian President ends visit to Ghana
2007
Agassi and Sharapova voted Wimbledon's sexiest champions on commercial website
2007
New gambling review could jeopardize UK's 'supercasino' plans
2007
Chicago Transit Authority announces repairs to Blue and Red Line
2007
WMAQ reporter Amy Jacobson leaves job following controversial video
2007
AFC Asian Cup: Indonesia shock Bahrain, China put five past Malaysia
2007
Study links breast cancer to Western diet
2007
Former US First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson dies at 94
2007
Swiss President visits Ghana
2008
Jesse Jackson apologizes for comment about Barack Obama
2008
Dow Chemical to buy Rohm and Haas
2008
Hundreds of Air Canada flight attendants to lose jobs
2008
Canadian Football League news: July 11, 2008
2008
Afghan government claims U.S. air strike killed dozens of civilians
2008
Burglars steal Milan Lučić's Memorial Cup ring from his Vancouver home
2008
Lebanon forms unity government with Hezbollah-led opposition
2009
Roller skating babies become YouTube sensation
2009
NHC upgrades Tropical Depression Four-E to Tropical Storm Carlos
2009
Space Shuttle Endeavour's launchpad struck by lightning delaying launch
2009
New words added to Webster's dictionary
2009
Two pilots dead in Richmond plane crash
2010
Gaza Strip aid ship departs Greece, diverts to Egypt
2010
Brazilian footballer, ex-policeman among seven arrested for 'barbaric' murder
2010
Pakistani Punjab police website hacked
2010
Church of England rejects compromise over women bishops
2010
Colombian journalist denied entry into US
2011
China's consumer prices rise to a three-year high in June as food prices soar 14.4 percent
2011
Stun gun found on JetBlue flight in Newark, New Jersey
2011
Syrian security forces raid Homs, one killed, twenty injured
2011
Former US First Lady Betty Ford dies aged 93
2012
Chris Moyles announces departure from BBC Radio 1 breakfast show

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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