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Today in History

LOTR...
Frodo & Samwise encounter Shelob
1824
Physicist and formulator of Kirchhoff's Laws, Gustav R Kirchhoff born in Königsberg, East Prussia
1894
Coca-Cola sold in bottles for the first time
1912
Girl Scouts of the USA founded
1932
Model, actress and Get Smart's Agent 99, Barbara Feldon born in Butler, Pennsylvania
1946
Singer, dancer and Academy Award winning actress, Liza Minnelli born in Los Angeles, California
1948
Guitarist, songwriter and singer, James Taylor born in Belmont, Massachusetts
1968
Independence Day in Mauritius
1994
The Church of England ordains 33 women to the priesthood
295
Death of St. Maximilian
604
Death of St. Gregory the Great (the Gregorian chant)
1022
Death of St. Simeon the New Theologian
1144
Election of Lucius II as Pope
1173
Canonization of St. Thomas a Becket
1208
Canonization of St. Peter of Castelnau
1229
Fredrick II of Germany arrives in Jerusalem
1350
The commune of Orvieto reminds its' citizens that sexual relations between Christian and Jew is forbidden
1496
Jews are expelled from Syria.
1507
Death of Cesare Borgia
1566
Mary Tudor, Queen of Scots, escapes to Dunbar Castle
1613
Andr de Ntre, French landscape architect born
1664
New Jersey became a British colony as King Charles the Second granted land in the New World to his brother James, the Duke of York.
1789
The U.S. Post Office is established.
1824
Gustav Robert Kirchoff, physicist born
1831
Pioneer auto maker Clement Studebaker. Studebaker was an American manufacturer who founded a family firm that became the world's largest producer of horse-drawn vehicles and a leader in automobile manufacturing, was born in Pinetown, Pennsylvania. born
1832
Captain Charles Cunningham Boycott, who's name is now synonymous with being ostracized, born in Burgh St. Peter, Norfolk, England
1850
First $20 Gold piece issued.
1858
New York Times publisher Adolph Simon Ochs. Born in Cincinnati, Ohio. One year later he became the owner of the New York Times, under whose leadership, it would become one of the world's outstanding newspapers. born
1862
Jane Delano, nurse and teacher who founded the Red Cross born
1863
President Jefferson Davis delivers his State of the Confederacy address.
1884
The State of Mississippi authorized the first state-supported college for women. It was called the Mississippi Industrial Institute and College.
1888
Hans Knappertsbusch, a conductor famous for his big musical climaxes born
1889
Almon B. Stowger received a patent for an automatic telephone system. The system was installed in Laporte, Indiana, in 1892
1894
Coca-Cola is sold in bottles for the first time.
1903
The Czar of Russia issues a decree providing for nominal freedom of religion throughout his territory.
1911
Gustavo Diaz Ordaz, president of Mexico born
1912
The first Girl Scouts of America troop was organized in Savannah, Ga., by Juliette Gordon Low.
1920
American painter, teacher and art critic, Elaine de Kooning. She is best known for her portraits, was born in New York, New York. She was married to artist Willem de Kooning
1921
Actor-singer Gordon MacRae born
1922
Novelist Jack Kerouac. Kerouac gave the "Beat" movement its name and celebrated its code of poverty and freedom. born
1922
Union leader Lane Kirkland Former AFL-CIO president born
1923
Former astronaut Wally Schirra born
1925
Chinese revolutionary leader Sun Yat-sen died.
1928
Playwright Edward Albee born
1930
Indian political and spiritual leader Mohandas K. Ghandi began a 200-mile march to the sea, where he rendered salt from seawater to protest a British tax on salt.
1932
The so-called "Swedish Match King," Ivar Kreuger, committed suicide in Paris, leaving behind a financial empire that turned out to be worthless.
1933
President Roosevelt delivered the first of his radio "fireside chats," telling Americans what was being done to deal with the nation's economic crisis.
1936
Broadcast journalist Lloyd Dobyns born
1938
The "Anschluss" took place as German troops entered Austria, completing what Adolf Hitler described as his mission to restore his homeland to the Third Reich.
1939
Pope Pius the 12th was formally crowned in ceremonies at the Vatican.
1940
Singer Al Jarreau born
1940
Finland and the Soviet Union concluded an armistice during World War Two. (Fighting between the two countries flared again the following year.)
1941
Actress Barbara Feldon (Get Smart) born
1942
Singer-guitarist Paul Kantner born
1944
Britain bars all travel to Ireland.
1946
Actress-singer Liza Minnelli born
1947
In a speech to Congress, President Truman outlined what became known as the Truman Doctrine, calling for U.S. aid to countries threatened by communist revolution.
1948
Singer-songwriter James Taylor born
1949
Rock singer-musician Bill Payne (Little Feat) born
1950
Actor Jon Provost ("Lassie") born
1957
Actor Jerry Levine born
1957
Rock musician Steve Harris (Iron Maiden) born
1957
Singer Marlon Jackson (The Jackson Five) born
1959
House joined the Senate in approving statehood for Hawaii.
1960
Actor Courtney B. Vance born
1961
Actor Titus Welliver ("Brooklyn South") born
1962
Baseball player Darryl Strawberry born
1963
Actress Julia Campbell born
1969
Rock musician Graham Coxon (Blur). born
1969
Paul McCartney married Linda Eastman in London.
1980
Jury finds John Wayne Gacy guilty of murders of 33 men and boys. (The next day, Gacy was sentenced to death; after years on death row, he was finally executed in May 1994.)
1981
Two Soviet cosmonauts boarded the Salyut 6 space station for a 75-day mission to the facility, which had been in orbit since 1977.
1982
Actor Samm Levine ("Freaks and Geeks") born
1983
Secretary of State George P. Shultz opened a new diplomatic drive to get foreign armies out of Lebanon as he met at the State Department with Lebanese Foreign Minister Elie Salem.
1985
The United States and the Soviet Union opened new arms control talks in Geneva by holding a "get-acquainted" session.
1985
Former U.S. President Richard M. Nixon announced he would drop Secret Service protection and hire his own bodyguards. The plan would save taxpayers about $3 million a year.
1985
Conductor Eugene Ormandy, director of the Philadelphia Philharmonic for more than four decades, died at age 85.
1986
Spaniards voted to keep their country in NATO in a surprise victory for Socialist Prime Minister Felipe Gonzalez
1987
A federal judge in Washington dismissed lawsuits by Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North seeking to stop an independent counsel's investigation of his role in the Iran-Contra affair.
1987
The musical play "Les Miserables" opened on Broadway.
1987
The Dow Jones Industrial Average elected to include the Coca-Cola Company and Boeing Company to its list and would drop Owens-Illinois Glass and Inco Ltd. from the list.
1988
Reverend Jesse Jackson won the Democratic precinct caucuses in his native South Carolina.
1989
Some 2500 veterans and supporters marched at the Art Institute of Chicago to demand that officials remove an American flag placed on the floor as part of a student's exhibit.
1990
Vice President Dan Quayle met in Santiago, with Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, who promised to relinquish power to Violeta Chamorro, the U.S.-backed candidate who won the presidential election.
1991
Secretary of State James A. Baker III met with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir and a Palestinian delegation as he continued a fact-finding mission.
1991
Kuwait City reopened its port for the first time since the Persian Gulf War.
1992
The UN Security Council stood firm in its demand that Iraq comply totally with Gulf War cease-fire resolutions, rebuffing an appeal for leniency from Saddam Hussein's special envoy, deputy prime minister Tariq Aziz.
1993
The music of Busoni experienced something of a comeback. First there were two recordings of the Busoni Piano Concerto. Now the Chicago Symphony has programmed the Busoni Violin Concerto. Ruben Gonzalez performed it under Daniel Barenboim's baton in May.
1993
Janet Reno was sworn in as the nation's first female attorney general.
1993
Thirteen bombs exploded in Bombay, India, killing more than 300 people.
1994
The Church of England ordained its first women priests.
1994
Secretary of State Warren Christopher held discussions with Chinese leaders in Beijing that were marked by blunt exchanges on human rights.
1995
President Clinton declared 39 California counties disaster areas after storms and flooding battered two-thirds of the state.
1995
World leaders wound up a week-long summit in Copenhagen, Denmark, committing themselves to fighting poverty, but differing on how to do so.
1996
Republican Bob Dole swept the seven Super Tuesday primaries, gaining a virtual lock on the GOP presidential nomination.
1997
Authorities in Los Angeles arrested Mikail Markhasev as a suspect in the shooting death of Bill Cosby's son, Ennis, almost two months earlier. Markhasev is currently serving a life sentence in San Quentin State Prison without the possibility of parole
1998
The government recorted the rate of new cancer cases among Americans had inched down for the first time, meaning over 70,000 fewer people than expected were diagnosed between 1992 and 1995.
1998
A report in the New England Journal of Medicine reported that a nurse who failed to wash her hands properly after handling her infected dog probably caused an outbreak of a yeast infection in the intensive-care nursery of a N.H. hospital. The outbreak infected at least 24 babies at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, N.H., over a 15-month period beginning in Oct. 1993.
1998
Kenneth Starr's prosecutors summoned President Clinton's close friend and adviser Bruce Lindsey for more questioning before the grand jury investigating the White House sex scandal.
1999
Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic joined NATO.
1999
Violinist Yehudi Menuhin died in Berlin at age 82.
2000
Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar scored a major victory in general elections
2000
Pope John Paul the Second asked God's forgiveness for the sins of Roman Catholics through the ages, including wrongs inflicted on Jews, women and minorities
2005
Garry Kasparov retires from professional chess
2005
Canadian airline Jetsgo ceases operations; 17,000 stranded
2005
Criminals kidnapping mother of soccer players, in Brazil
2005
Meath/Kildare by-election turnout between 20-30%
2005
British 13-year-old given life for rape of teacher
2005
US Senate passes new bankruptcy bill
2005
FBI suspect Jesse James captured in Rio after five years on run
2005
3 dead as man on trial for rape escapes
2005
Comedian Dave Allen dies aged 68
2006
Czech woman wins the first Sudoku world championship
2006
Man takes baby and woman hostage in hospital
2006
Arrests for kite flying in Pakistan spring festival
2006
Bush nominates a new ambassador to Australia
2006
Formula 1 season starts with GP of Bahrain
2006
Swedish olympic snowboarder dies during practice run
2006
United Kingdom hit by snow storms
2006
NASA spacecraft enters Mars orbit
2007
New Zealand's Prime Minister supports daylight savings extension
2007
NCAA Basketball: National tournament field set
2007
Bug in Microsoft antivirus deletes users' e-mails
2007
Zimbabwe police break up rally, detain leaders
2007
BBC correspondent missing
2007
Swiss reject single health insurance
2007
Gas line explodes in Texas
2007
U.S. Army's surgeon general asked to resign
2007
Marcello Lippi completes European XI squad
2007
Bomb kills nine Afghan police
2007
CSX freight train derails in Oneida, New York, tank car explodes
2007
UN report says Sudan government guilty of orchestrating Darfur crimes
2007
Brad Delp, lead singer of rock band Boston: found dead at 55
2008
Archer kills elderly man on street in California, US
2008
New York Governor Eliot Spitzer resigns
2008
Jayant "Dr Death" Patel arrested in Oregon, US
2008
One year on: IFALPA's representative to ICAO, pilot and lawyer on ongoing prosecution of Garuda Indonesia Flight 200 pilot
2008
UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling releases budget
2008
National Hockey League news: March 12, 2008
2008
Unions battle in Ohio over hospital workers
2008
Australian PM subject to scrutiny over Carer and Senior's payments
2008
Former Australian PM attacks parliament on apology to the Stolen Generations
2008
MPs and Police Officers pay tributes to Michael Todd
2009
Madoff jailed after pleading guilty to $50 billion fraud scheme
2009
Fundraising to keep Avro Vulcan flying succeeds
2009
Space debris threatened International Space Station, astronauts temporarily evacuated
2009
Cricket: West Indies regain Wisden Trophy
2009
Launch of Space Shuttle Discovery further delayed
2009
Apple reveals new iPod shuffle with voice
2009
Shin wins Singapore HSBC Womens Golf Classic
2010
Sanctions on US products introduced by Brazil
2010
Suicide bomber kills at least 45 in Lahore, Pakistan
2010
New York attorney general Cuomo recuses himself from governor Paterson investigation
2010
Up to one-half of Somali food aid diverted from needy
2010
Turkey recalls ambassador to Sweden over "genocide" vote
2011
Arab League calls for Libyan no-fly zone
2011
Explosion at earthquake-damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant
2011
British MP reveals Fred Goodwin superinjunction
2011
Special report on Japanese tsunami emergency in Pichilemu, Chile
2011
Honey bee decline spreading globally
2011
U.S. February budget deficit is largest on record
2011
English policeman Nicholas Stone cleared of rape, facing jail for misconduct
2012
1960s Rockabilly music artist Terry Teen dies aged 70

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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