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Today in History

1865
Artist Kristjan Raud born in Kirikuk├╝la, Estonia
1865
Artist Paul Raud born in Kirikuk├╝la, Estonia
1903
Curly Howard of Three Stooges fame born Jerome Lester Horowitz in Brooklyn, New York
1917
Academy Award winning actress, Joan Fontaine born in Tokyo, Japan
1919
Nobel Prize winning author, Doris Lessing born in Kermanshah, Persia
1934
Mothers-in-Law Day
1938
Emmy Award winning actor, Christopher Lloyd born in Stamford, Connecticut
1942
Actress and singer, Annette Funicello born in Utica, New York
1952
Actor Jeff Goldblum born in Whitaker, Pennsylvania
1990
Pearl Jam debuts as 'Mookie Blaylock' at the Off Ramp club in Seattle, Washington
304
Death of St. Philip of Heraclea
685
Two giant pandas presented to the Emperor of Japan by the Emperor of China
741
Charles Martel of Gual dies at Quiezy. His mayoral power is divided between his two sons, Pepin III and Carloman.
995
First Saints canonized
1303
Election of Benedict XI as Pope
1383
Death of Ferdinand I, King of Portugal
1565
Jean Grolier de Servires, French bibliophile, dies
1746
Princeton University, in New Jersey, receives its charter.
1746
Princeton University in New Jersey received its charter.
1797
French balloonist Andre-Jacques Garnerin made the first parachute descent, landing safely from a height of about 3,000 feet.
1811
Hungarian composer Franz Liszt
1824
The Tennessee Legislature adjourns ending Davy Crockett's state political career.
1832
Leopold Damrosch was born in Russia. He was a founder of the New York Philharmonic and the father of the even-more-famous conductor Walter Damrosch. born
1836
Sam Houston was inaugurated as the first constitutionally elected president of the Republic of Texas.
1844
Actress Sarah Bernhardt (Bernard) born
1859
Spain declares war on the Moors in Morocco.
1883
New York's Metropolitan Opera House opened.
1885
Tenor, Giovanni Martinelli born
1887
John Reed, American journalist, poet and revolutionary who witnessed the Russian Revolution of 1917 born
1896
Charles Glenn King biochemist (discovered vitamin C) born
1903
American biologist George Beadle (Nobel Prize-winner for medicine in 1958) born
1905
Actress Constance Bennett (Madame X, As Young as You Feel, Two-Faced Woman, Topper, Sin Takes a Holiday) born
1906
French painter Paul Czanne died.
1907
Baseball Hall of Famer Jimmie Foxx born
1907
Ringling Brothers buys Barnum & Bailey.
1913
Actress Boots (Patricia) Mallory (Sing Sing Nights, Wolf Dog, Powdersmoke Range, Carnival Lady) born
1916
Baseball player, Harry Walker born
1917
Actress Joan Fontaine (Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Rebecca, Jane Eyre, Ivanhoe, Island in the Sun, Gunga Din, Emperor Waltz, Beyond a Reasonable Doubt) born
1919
English author Doris Lessing (Children of Violence, African Stories) born
1920
Psychologist and LSD advocate Timothy Leary born
1920
Actress Mitzi Green (Elizabeth Keno) (Lost in Alaska, Little Orphan Annie, Tom Sawyer, So This is Hollywood) born
1925
Basketball Hall of Famer, Slater Martin born
1925
Artist Robert Rauschenberg born
1928
Republican presidential nominee Herbert Hoover spoke of the "American system of rugged individualism" in a speech at New York's Madison Square Garden.
1930
Songwriter Dory Previn (Come Saturday Morning, It's Impossible) born
1934
Bank robber Charles "Pretty Boy" Floyd was shot to death by federal agents at a farm in East Liverpool, Ohio.
1938
Actor Derek Jacobi (The Tenth Man - Hallmark Hall of Fame born
1938
Actor Christopher Lloyd. born
1938
Inventor Charles Carlson produced the first dry, or xerographic, copy, but had trouble interesting investors.
1939
Actor Tony Roberts (Play It Again Sam, Serpico, Radio Days, Annie Hall, Hannah and Her Sisters, Edge of Night, The Thorns, The Four Seasons) born
1939
Broadcast of the 1st TV NFL game-Eagles vs Dodgers.
1942
Actress Annette Funicello (The Mickey Mouse Club, Beach Blanket Bingo, Back to the Beach, Beach Party, Bikini Beach; singer: Tall Paul, First Name Initial, O Dio Mio, Pineapple Princess). born
1942
Football player, Cecil Upshaw born
1943
Actress Catherine Deneuve (Dorleac) (Repulsion, Indochine, The April Fools, Umbrellas of Cherbourg) born
1945
Singer/musician, Leslie West (Weinstein) born
1945
Singer, Eddie Brigati (Rascals Lonely Too Long, Groovin', A Girl like You, How Can I be Sure, A Beautiful Morning, People Got to be Free) born
1949
Hockey player, Butch Goring born
1952
Actor Jeff Goldblum (The Fly, The Big Chill, Death Wish, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, The Right Stuff, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, Silverado, Hideaway, Jurassic Park, Tenspeed and Brown Shoe) born
1953
Author, Patti Davis (House of Secrets, Bondage; daughter of U.S. President Ronald Reagan and 1st lady, Nancy Davis Reagan) born
1954
West Germany joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
1959
Movie writer-producer Todd Graff born
1960
Rock musician Cris Kirkwood (Meat Puppets) born
1962
President Kennedy announced an air and naval blockade of Cuba, following the discovery of Soviet missile bases on the island.
1963
Champion Skater Brian Boitano (Olympic gold medalist figure skating 1988) born
1964
French author Jean-Paul Sartre refused the Nobel Prize for literature.
1965
Singer-songwriter John Wesley Harding born
1966
Actress Valeria Golino born
1968
Country singer Shelby Lynne born
1968
Reggae rapper Shaggy born
1968
"Apollo Seven" returned safely, splashing down in the Atlantic Ocean.
1970
Rapper Tracey Lee born
1978
Pope John Paul II was installed as pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church.
1979
The US government allowed the deposed Shah of Iran to travel to New York for medical treatment -- a decision that precipitated the Iran hostage crisis.
1980
Actor Michael Fishman ("Roseanne") born
1981
The United States of America national debt tops $1 trillion.
1985
Rock musician Zachary Hanson (Hanson) born
1987
In a bid to calm the recent frenzy in the world's financial markets, President Reagan said he would be meeting with congressional leaders to negotiate ways of reducing the budget deficit.
1988
The 100th Congress adjourned in an early-morning session that produced sweeping legislation to combat drug abuse in America.
1989
Survivors of the Northern California earthquake attended church services as the clean-up and recovery efforts continued.
1990
Actor Jonathan Lipnicki ("The Jeff Foxworthy Show") born
1990
President Bush vetoed the Civil Rights Act of 1990, saying it would lead to a quota system. (The veto was upheld.)
1991
Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir warned that Israel would refuse to negotiate with any Palestinians who claimed alliance to the PLO.
1992
The space shuttle "Columbia" was launched on a ten-day mission that included deployment of an Italian satellite.
1992
The Atlanta Braves beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 7-to-2, in game five of the World Series.
1993
It was announced President Clinton would fly to Moscow the following January for a summit with Russian President Boris Yeltsin.
1993
A judge in West Palm Beach, Florida, sentenced two white men to life in prison for setting a black tourist on fire.
1994
President Clinton, campaigning in San Francisco for California Democrats, demanded that schools expel gun-toting students after earlier accusing Republicans of plotting to gut his education package.
1995
The largest gathering of world leaders in history marked the 50th anniversary of the United Nations.
1995
The Atlanta Braves defeated the Cleveland Indians, 4-3, to win the first two games of the World Series.
1995
British writer Sir Kingsley Amis died in London at age 73.
1996
General Motors settled a three-week strike with its workers in Canada, resolving a walkout that had idled more than 46-thousand workers across North America.
1996
Thirty-four people were killed when a flaming Boeing 707 jet sliced through dozens of homes minutes after takeoff from Ecuador's Manta airport.
1996
The New York Yankees won their first game of the World Series, defeating the Atlanta Braves 5-to-2 in game three.
1997
For the first time, US inspectors discovered E. coli bacteria in imported Canadian beef, halting shipments of 34,000 pounds.
1997
The Cleveland Indians tied the World Series at two games apiece as they beat the Florida Marlins, 10-to-3, in game four.
1997
President Clinton presented a modest strategy to combat global warming by gradually reducing greenhouse gases over the next two decades.
1998
The government announced one of the biggest toys recalls ever, advising parents to remove the batteries from their kids' "Power Wheels" cars and trucks, made by Fisher-Price, because of faulty wiring that could cause them to erupt into flame.
1999
Five of the seven Republican presidential hopefuls met in New Hampshire for their first debate of the 2000 nomination race, with front-runner George W. Bush notably absent.
1999
Former Vichy official Maurice Papon was expelled from Switzerland back to France.
2005
Taiwan to violate Tamiflu patent due to vaccine shortage
2005
Former Irish politician Liam Lawlor dies in car crash
2005
Hundreds of SUNY New Paltz students demonstrate, storm administration building
2005
Tropical Storm Alpha forms, breaks Atlantic storm record
2006
Indian Government gives green signal to community radio
2006
Massa wins Brazilian Grand Prix, Alonso and Renault win championships
2006
US considers taxing earnings from online games
2006
Mahathir won't stop criticisms of Malaysian gov't.
2006
Racial Equality commissioner warns of racial violence in Britain
2007
Teacher sexual misconduct rampant in American schools, says AP
2007
Australia Votes 2007: Analysts say Rudd wins TV debate
2007
Boston Red Sox win American League Championship
2007
Second grader suspended from school after drawing disturbing picture
2007
Australia Votes 2007: Treasurer says Labor tax plan contains error
2007
MOEA Taiwan signs MOUs with 5 global WiMAX companies to connect with networking industry world-wide
2007
Report blames pilot error for Garuda Indonesia Flight 200 disaster
2007
Nobel laureate Doris Lessing: 9/11 'wasn't that terrible' compared to IRA attacks
2007
Oral Roberts returns to namesake university amid son's scandal
2007
New audiotape attributed to Osama bin Laden released
2007
Wildfires burn in southern California
2007
Sydney FC sack manager Branko Culina
2007
Cheney warns of 'serious consequences' of Iran's nuclear ambitions
2007
Two US sailors killed, one wounded in Bahrain
2007
2010 FIFA World Cup Qualification (Asia): Pakistan vs. Iraq
2008
UK Prime Minister: The world will enter a recession
2008
India's first lunar mission launched
2008
Seven arrested in UK cruise ship drugs seizure
2008
Thailand's fugitive ex-PM sentenced to two years for corruption
2008
2008-09 Wikipedia for Schools goes online
2009
Colombian drug lord receives 45-year jail sentence in US
2009
Windows 7 gets 'early release' in China; software pirates beat Microsoft to the punch
2009
British soldier dies in Afghanistan, UK death toll rises to 222
2009
US Defense Secretary Gates to seek extra aid for Afghanistan
2009
UN says more investment in agriculture needed to tackle world hunger
2009
Satirical website criticizes Glenn Beck for 'hypocritical' attempts to silence free speech
2009
India's ruling Congress party leads in three key state polls
2009
Red Cross member abducted in Darfur, Sudan
2009
Panama-flagged ship hijacked off Somali coast by pirates
2009
Shelling in Somalia's capital kills twenty
2009
Big Ben dropped from ITV News at Ten opening sequence
2009
Ciudad Juarez, Mexico's murder rate becomes world's highest
2009
SADC calls for transparent Mozambique elections
2009
Massachusetts man charged with conspiring to attack US mall, kill Iraq troops
2009
With arrival of rainy season, perennial scramble in Zimbabwe for seed, fertilizer
2009
Demonstrators clash with police in Algeria after slum protest
2010
Strong aftershock hits central Chile
2010
Earthquake shakes western Mexico
2011
Chinese girl who was hit and run by two drivers, ignored by eighteen people, dies
2011
University of Wales to close down after 120 years
2011
Canadian actress Barbara Kent dies at age 103
2012
Matt Kenseth wins third NASCAR Sprint Cup race of 2012

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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