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Today in History

1833
Chemist, engineer, manufacturer, inventor of dynamite and creator of the Nobel Prizes, Alfred Nobel born in Stockholm, Sweden
1879
Thomas Edison concludes 40 hour test of first practical incandescent lamp
1917
Bandleader, singer, composer and trumpeter, Dizzy Gillespie born in Cheraw, South Carolina
1925
Actress and USO board member, Joyce Randolph born in Detroit, Michigan
1956
Novelist, screenwriter and actress, Carrie Fisher born in Beverly Hills, California
1966
144 people, mostly children, killed by coal waste landslide in Aberfan, South Wales.
1994
32 killed by Seongsu Bridge collapse
635
Death of St. Fintan of Taghmon
1066
Dover submits to William "the Conqueror"
1096
French and German members of the 1st Crusade defeated by the Turks.
1187
Election of Pope Gregory VIII
1422
Death of Charles VI, King of France
1520
Magellan enters the strait which bears his name
1529
Henry VIII of England is named Defender of the Faith by the Pope after defending the seven sacraments against Luther.
1581
Zampieri Domenichino, Italian artist. born
1596
The Sieur de Beaumont accused of witchcraft
1600
Tokugawa Ieyasu defeats his enemies in battle and affirms his position as Japans most powerful warlord.
1621
All exports from the colonies must have customs paid in England
1641
Ulster "Massacre"
1663
John Harlow fined 50 lbs of tobacco for missing church in Warwick, Virginia.
1760
Japanese painter Katsushka Hokusai An ingraver and printmaker whose color prints are still quite popular tiday. born
1772
Poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge (The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Kubla Khan) born
1790
The Tricolor is chosen as the official flag of France.
1797
The US Navy frigate "Constitution," also known as "Old Ironsides," was launched in Boston's harbor.
1805
Vice Admiral Horatio Lord Nelson wins his greatest victory over a Franco- Spanish fleet in the Battle of Trafalgar, fought off Cape Trafalgar, Spain. Nelson is fatally wounded in the battle, but lives long enough to see victory.
1833
Alfred Bernhard Nobel, created dynamite and Peace Prizes. born
1837
Under a flag of truce during peace talks, U.S. troops sieze the Indian Seminole Chief Osceola in Florida.
1858
"Orpheus in the Underworld" premiered in Paris. Jacques Offenbach's operetta made the CAN-CAN popular. It also continues a lot of the music you know from "Gaite Parisienne," the orchestral suite that might just as well be called "Offenbach's Greatest Hits."
1867
Many leaders of the Kiowa, Comanche and Kiowa-Apache sign a peace treaty at Medicine Lodge, Kan. Comanche Chief Quanah Parker refused to accept the treaty terms.
1879
After 14 months of experiments, Thomas Edison invented a workable electric light at his laboratory in Menlo Park, New Jersey.
1912
Hungarian-born conductor Sir Georg Solti (1st complete recording of Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen) born
1917
Dizzy (John Birks) Gillespie, trumpeter, a creator of modern jazz born
1923
The world's first planetarium opens in Munich.
1926
Bob Rosburg (golf born
1928
Baseball Hall-of-Famer Whitey (Edward) Ford (Cy Young Award born
1929
Author Ursula LeGuin (The Wind's Twelve Quarters, A Wizard of Earthsea, Left Hand of Darkness) born
1933
Actress Georgia Brown (Lillian Klot) (Oliver, Cheers) born
1936
Basketball player Connie Dierking born
1939
Baseball player Ted Uhlaender born
1940
Rock singer Manfred Mann (Michael Lubowitz)(Do Wah Diddy Diddy, The Mighty Quinn) born
1941
Musician Steve Cropper (Booker T. & the MG's) born
1942
Singer Elvin Bishop born
1943
Musician Ron Elliott (guitar born
1943
Football player Brian Picolo (Chicago Bears film: Brian's Song) born
1944
During World War Two, US troops captured the German city of Aachen
1945
Actor Everett McGill born
1946
Musician Lee Loughnane (Chicago) born
1949
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu born
1953
Musician Charlotte Caffey (The Go-Go's) born
1954
Tennis player, Linda Tuero born
1955
Musician/guitarist, Eric Faulkner born
1956
Steven Curtis Chapman born
1956
Actress-author Carrie Fisher born
1957
Singer Julian Cope born
1957
Musician/Guitarist/songwriter, Steve Lukather (Toto) born
1959
The Guggenheim Museum opened to the public in New York.
1960
Democrat John F. Kennedy and Republican Richard M. Nixon clashed in their fourth and final presidential debate.
1966
More than 140 people, mostly children, were killed when a coal waste landslide engulfed a school and several houses in south Wales.
1967
The "March on the Pentagon," protesting American involvement in Vietnam , draws 50,000 protesters. .
1969
Willy Brandt is elected Chancellor of West Germany.
1970
Rock musician Che Colovita Lemon (Jimmie's Chicken Shack) born
1971
President Nixon nominated Lewis F. Powell and William H. Rehnquist to the US Supreme Court.
1976
Actor Jeremy Miller ("Growing Pains") born
1977
Actor Will Estes ("Kirk") born
1983
The United States sends a ten-ship task force to Grenada.
1983
1 meter = distance light travels through vacuum in 1/299,792,458 of a second
1986
Pro-Iranian kidnappers in Lebanon claimed to have abducted American Edward Tracy (he was released in August 1991).
1987
The debate began in the Senate on the nomination of Judge Robert H. Bork to the US Supreme Court. (Two days later, the Senate voted 58-to-42 to reject the nomination.)
1988
A federal grand jury in New York indicted former Philippine President Ferdinand E. Marcos and his wife, Imelda, on charges of fraud and racketeering. (Marcos died before he could be brought to trial; his widow, Imelda, was acquitted in 1990.)
1989
Rescue workers in Oakland, California, pulled longshoreman Buck Helm alive from the wreckage of the Nimitz Freeway, part of which had collapsed during the October 17th earthquake. (However, Helm died less than a month later.)
1990
A Palestinian stabbed three Israelis to death during a rampage in a Jerusalem neighborhood in retaliation for the police killings of 17 Arabs on the Temple Mount.
1991
American hostage Jesse Turner was freed by his kidnappers in Lebanon after nearly five years in captivity.
1992
Singer Madonna's book "Sex" was released.
1992
A report prepared for the Los Angeles police commission found that the city was unprepared to handle the rioting that broke out the previous spring, and had responded inadequately.
1992
The Toronto Blue Jays won game four of the World Series, defeating the Atlanta Braves 2-to-1.
1993
NATO ministers endorsed a US plan to form limited partnerships with Russia and other former East bloc foes, but stopped short of offering full membership.
1993
The Philadelphia Phillies beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 2-to-0, in game five of the World Series; Toronto still led the Series, three games to two.
1993
The Senate rejected curbs on President Clinton's right as commander-in-chief to send troops to Haiti.
1994
Thirty-two people were killed when a section of bridge collapsed in Seoul, South Korea.
1994
United States and North Korea signed an agreement requiring the communist nation to halt its nuclear program and agree to inspections.
1995
The Atlanta Braves won game one of the World Series, defeating the visiting Cleveland Indians 3-2.
1995
Maxene Andrews of the Andrews Sisters died in Hyannis, Mass., at age 79.
1995
Rioting inmates surrendered control of a prison dormitory in Greenville, Illinois, ending a one-day uprising that began after the government ordered federal prisons locked down nationwide.
1996
The Atlanta Braves took a two-games-to-none lead in the World Series, defeating the New York Yankees 4-to-0.
1996
President Clinton's "don't ask, don't tell" policy on gays in the military survived its first Supreme Court test.
1996
Arnoldo Aleman claimed victory over Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua's presidential election.
1997
Reversing months of strong opposition, the Clinton administration endorsed a revised Republican bill to restructure the Internal Revenue Service and shift the burden of proof from the taxpayer to the government in court-contested cases.
1997
The Florida Marlins beat the Cleveland Indians, 14-to-11, in game three of the World Series.
1998
A radical environmental group, the Earth Liberation Front, claimed responsibility for fires that caused $12 million in damage at the nation's busiest ski resort in Vail, Colorado.
1998
Dr. Jane Henney was confirmed as FDA commissioner.
1998
President Clinton signed a $520 billion spending package that was shipped to him just before the 105th Congress slipped into history.
1998
The New York Yankees swept the San Diego Padres, winning game four of the World Series, 3-to-0.
1999
France's highest court upheld the conviction of Maurice Papon, the former Vichy official who had fled France rather than face prison for his role in sending Jews to Nazi death camps; Papon was captured in Switzerland and deported the following day.
2005
Wikimedia Foundation and Answers.com announce partnership
2005
High School shooting in Michigan, USA injures one
2005
Journalist freed from Baghdad captors
2005
Major ISP Level 3 experiences downtime
2005
Norway takes action to prevent a possible bird flu epidemic
2005
Possible end to strike, fines for BC teachers
2005
Syrian officials and Lebanese President accused by U.N. report
2005
South Thailand insurgents blamed for five bombs
2005
France protests treatment of government minister by US authorities; US government admits mistake
2005
Avian flu found within UK
2005
Amazon rainforest being destroyed faster than previously believed
2005
Swedish couple names baby boy "Google"
2006
US population reaches 300 million
2006
Thai Prime Minister to consider lifting martial law
2006
Waikato win Air New Zealand Cup
2006
Headmaster to meet parents after student sex parties
2006
Evangelist Kent Hovind's tax trial begins
2006
Interview with Innocent Watat, City Council candidate for Wards 3 & 4 in Brampton, Canada
2007
First non-white Governor elected in Louisiana in over 100 years
2007
Alcon Taiwan Hiking focuses on reducing computing hours
2007
Hope Parade in Taiwan inconjuncted with creation and environment awareness
2007
Kimi Räikkönen wins Brazilian Grand Prix and the Championship
2007
Aerosmith sued over late cancellation of gig in Maui, Hawaii
2007
Turkey preparing for incursion into Iraq after PKK militants kill 17 soldiers
2007
Thousands flee renewed violence in Congo
2007
BDSM as business: An interview with the owners of a dungeon
2007
Major League Soccer: Chicago Fire vs. Los Angeles Galaxy
2007
Scottish Premier League 2007–08: Rangers vs. Celtic
2008
New York business receives package containing unknown powder
2008
Canadian farmer vows to continue providing customers with raw milk despite order
2009
EU to give 280 million euro in aid to dairy farmers
2009
UNHCR: Thousands of Angolans expelled from DRC in "dire" need of aid
2009
Ousted Honduran president Zelaya says coup talks suspended
2009
Five cholera deaths recorded in Zimbabwe amid fears of new epidemic
2009
Indian Human Resources minister to reform technology sector
2009
Afghan president accepts runoff vote; UN seeks to fire 200 officials
2009
Scottish lawyer denies death of Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi
2009
US Supreme court to hear Guantanamo Bay cases
2009
Iran nuclear talks enter third day
2009
Suicide bombers close Pakistani schools
2009
France confirms deportation of illegal Afghan immigrants
2009
At least 21 dead after train accident in India
2009
BBC's Mock The Week 'breached guidelines' with Olympian humour, say corporation's Trust
2009
Indonesian president sworn in for a second term
2010
Whooping cough outbreak kills ten infants in California
2010
Archaeologists uncover Britain's earliest known hospital
2010
Two men found guilty of murder of shop owner in West Yorkshire, England
2010
British Government warns against tax breaks for Scientology
2010
Typhoon Megi heads towards China
2010
Electric company faces lawsuits from residents of California neighborhood destroyed by explosion
2010
Scientist demands end to US 'addiction to oil'
2010
Australian jockey Stathi Katsidis found dead at age 31
2011
Greek lawmakers pass new austerity law despite violent protests
2011
St Paul's cathedral to shut down following 'Occupy' protest
2012
Car bomb hits centre of Beirut

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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