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Today in History

1807
Aaron Burr is acquitted of treason
1875
Ranch hand, notion salesman and author of Tarzan of the Apes, Edgar Rice Burroughs born in Chicago
1917
Russia officially proclaimed a republic
1924
Actress Yvonne De Carlo born in Vancouver, British Columbia
1929
Actress Anne Ramsey born in Omaha, Nebraska
1931
US Air Force B-29 pilot, guitarist and singer, Boxcar Willie born Lecil Travis Martin in Red Oak, Texas
1939
Tony, Emmy and Grammy Award winning actress and comedienne, Lily Tomlin born in Detroit, Michigan
1972
Fischer defeats Spassky in world chess match
1973
Actress Polly Shannon born in Kingston, Ontario
1982
USAF Space Command is founded
1983
Korean airliner downed by USSR fighters
69
Traditional date of the destruction of Jerusalem
256
North African bishops vote unanimously that Christians who had lapsed under persecution must be rebaptized upon reentering the Church. The vote led to a battle between Cyprian, one of the North African bishops, and Stephen, bishop of Rome, who disagreed with the vote. That Cyprian yielded has been a longstanding argument for the Roman bishop's supremacy in the early church.
891
Northmen defeated near Louvaine, France
1067
Boudouin VI becomes earl of Flanders
1159
Death of Pope Adrian IV, only English pope
1181
Ubaldo Allucingoli replaces Alexander III as Pope Lucius III
1181
Election of Lucius III as Pope
1267
Rabbi Moses Ben Nachman establishes a Jewish community in Jerusalem
1271
Election of Gregory X as Pope
1315
Edmund the Butler given land as reward for putting down English rebels
1422
Henry VI becomes King of England
1482
Krim-Tataren plunders Kiev
1511
Council to Pisa opens
1513
Balboa sets out from Darien
1529
Mannerist Italian painter Taddeo Zuccari born
1549
Charles Philip of Croij, marquis of Havr' and earl of Fontenoy. born
1557
Death of Jacques Cartier
1608
Composer Giacomo Torelli born
1640
Quinnipiack becomes New Haven, Connecticut
1646
The Cambridge Synod of Congregational Churches convened in Mass. It formulated the 'Cambridge Platform,' outlining the proper polity (religious government) to be followed by the New England Congregational churches.
1653
Composer Johann Pachelbel born
1661
1st yacht race - England's King Charles vs. his brother James
1689
Bavarian master builder Kilian I von Dientzenhofer born
1711
Willem IV KH Friso, Dutch prince of Orange-Nassau born
1712
Dutch book illustrator Simon Fokke born
1724
Theologist and co-founder of Society of It General John Nieuwenhuijzen born
1732
Composer Johann Gottlieb Sollner born
1733
Composer Thomas Alexander Erskine Kelly born
1768
Composer Carl Bernhard Wessely born
1785
Mozart wrote Haydn that "I send my six sons to you, my most celebrated and dear friend." Mozart was referring to six string quartets. Mozart was born late enough to have been Papa Haydn's grandson, but Haydn outlived him.
1787
Classical composer John Bake born
1791
US religious author Lydia Sigourney, (How to Be Happy) born
1803
Dutch painter Jacobus T Abels born
1803
In Boston, the Massachusetts Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (SPCK) was instituted. It was the first tract society established in North America.
1807
Aaron Burr, vice president of the United States under Thomas Jefferson, was acquitted of treason charges growing out of an alleged plot to set up an independent empire in the nation's south and west.
1810
The first plow with interchangeable parts was patented by John J. Wood.
1836
A wagon train of Presbyterian missionaries, led by pioneer missionary Dr. Marcus Whitman, reached the site of modern Walla Walla, WA. Whitman's wife Narcissa became the first white woman to cross the North American continent.
1849
California Constitutional Convention held in Monterey.
1854
German composer Engelbert Humperdinck born
1859
The Pullman sleeping car was placed into service. The car was built by company namesake George Pullman and he was assisted by Ben Field.
1875
"Tarzan" author Edgar Rice Burroughs born
1878
First woman telephone operator starts work, Emma Nutt of Boston.
1887
Emile Berliner filed for a patent for his invention of the lateral-cut, flat-disk gramophone on this day. We know it better as the record player. Emile got the patent, but Thomas Edison got the notoriety -- for making it work and making music with his American invention.
1897
The first section of Boston's new subway system was opened.
1900
Announcer Don Wilson (The Jack Benny Show) born
1904
Actor Johnny Mack Brown ( Apache Uprising, Ghost Rider, The Masked Rider, Oregon Trail, Rustlers of Red Dog, Texas Kid) born
1907
Union leader Walter Reuther President of United Automobile Workers [UAW] and Congress of Industrial Organizations [CIO]) born
1914
The last known passenger pigeon died at the Cincinnati Zoo.
1920
Actor Richard Farnsworth ("The Grey Fox") born
1922
Actor Vittorio Gassman born
1922
Actress Yvonne De Carlo (Peggy Yvonne Middleton) (10 Commandments, Munsters, McLintock!) born
1922
Former Defense Secretary Melvin R. Laird born
1923
Boxing champ Rocky Marciano born
1923
An earthquake struck Tokyo, followed by a disastrous fire. An estimated 74,000 people died.
1928
Actor George Maharis (Route 66, The Most Deadly Game, Return to Fantasy Island, Murder on Flight 502, Land Raiders, Exodus) born
1931
Country singer Boxcar Willie born
1932
New York City Mayor James J. "Gentleman Jimmy" Walker resigned following charges of graft and corruption in his administration.
1933
Former Texas Governor Ann Richards born
1933
Country music singer Conway Twitty (Hello Darlin') born
1935
Symphony conductor Seiji Ozawa born
1935
Conductor Seiji Ozawa born
1937
Actor Ron O'Neal born
1937
Actor Don Stroud born
1939
World War Two began as Nazi Germany invaded Poland.
1939
Comedian-actress Lily Tomlin born
1942
A federal judge in Sacramento, California, upheld the wartime detention of Japanese-Americans as well as Japanese nationals.
1944
Singer Archie Bell born
1944
Orchestra leader Leonard Slatkin ( St. Louis Symphony Orchestra) born
1945
Americans received word of Japan's formal surrender that ended World War Two. (Because of the time difference, it was September second in Tokyo Bay, where the ceremony took place.)
1946
Singer Barry Gibb (BeeGees-Stayin' Alive, Night Fever, How Deep Is Your Love) born
1951
The United States, Australia and New Zealand signed a mutual defense pact, the ANZUS treaty.
1957
Singer Gloria Estefan (Miami Sound Machine-Conga, 1-2-3) born
1957
The horn player Dennis Brain died in an automobile accident. His playing can be heard on the first recording of Hindemith's Horn Concerto and Brain played a major role in the Hoffnung Music Festivals, which lampooned classical music a generation before P.D.Q. Bach.
1961
Former White House Press Secretary Dee Dee Myers born
1961
Jazz musician Boney James born
1970
Rap DJ Spigg Nice (Lost Boyz) born
1972
American Bobby Fischer won the international chess crown in Reykjavik , Iceland, defeating Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union.
1975
Actor Scott Speedman ("Felicity") born
1976
US Representative Wayne L. Hays (Democrat, Ohio) resigned in the wake of a scandal in which he admitted having an affair with secretary Elizabeth Ray.
1983
Henry "Scoop" Jackson, a 30-year Senate veteran, died in Everett, Washington, at age 71.
1983
269 people were killed when a Korean Air Lines Boeing 747 was shot down by a Soviet jet fighter after the airliner entered Soviet airspace.
1984
The astronauts aboard the shuttle Discovery launched their third commercial satellite in three days, sending Telstar Three into space.
1985
The crew of the space shuttle Discovery redeployed a Leasat III satellite that they had retrieved from orbit and repaired in the spacecraft's cargo bay.
1986
The Soviet Union announced that one of its passenger ships, the Admiral Nakhimov, had collided with a merchant vessel in the Black Sea the night before, sinking both ships, and killing up to 448 people.
1987
Peace demonstrator S. Brian Willson lost his legs when he was hit by a train at the Concord Naval Weapons Station in California while protesting weapons shipments to Central America.
1988
Shipyard workers at Gdansk, Poland, ended an eleven-day strike, acting with some reluctance on the advice of Solidarity leader Lech Walesa.
1989
Baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti died of a heart attack at his summer home in Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, at age 51.
1990
President Bush announced that he and Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev would meet in Helsinki, Finland, for a "free-flowing" one-day summit on the Persian Gulf crisis and other issues.
1991
Yugoslavia's presidency and the country's feuding republics accepted a European Community plan designed to stop months of fierce fighting among Croats, Serbs and the army.
1992
Defying a US government warning, Bobby Fischer announced he would play his onetime rival, Boris Spassky, in a five million-dollar chess match in Yugoslavia despite United Nations-imposed sanctions.
1993
Louis Freeh was sworn in as director of the FBI.
1993
The Pentagon unveiled a five-year defense plan to further shrink the US military in favor of a lean, high-tech force.
1994
Chicago police found the body of 11-year-old Robert "Yummy" Sandifer, a suspect in a gang-related killing who apparently became a victim of gang violence.
1994
Morocco established low-level diplomatic relations with Israel.
1995
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio.
1995
Illinois Congressman Mel Reynolds, convicted of having sex with an underage campaign volunteer, announced his resignation.
1996
A day after Iraqi forces moved into a Kurdish safe haven, US officials were warning the Baghdad government that the incursion would not go unpunished. That same day, Iraq ordered its troops to withdraw from Irbil.
1997
Cindy Figg-Currier wins LPGA State Farm Rail Classic
1997
Jerry Lewis' 32nd Muscular Dystrophy telethon raises $50,500,000
1997
The Cartoon Channel premieres in Japan
1997
As Britain continued to mourn the untimely death of Princess Diana, came word from a source in the Paris prosecutor's office that Diana's driver, Henri Paul, was legally intoxicated at the time of the crash.
1997
Armed robbers posing as postal workers stole more than $37 million from a Zurich, Switzerland, post office.
1998
During a Kremlin summit overshadowed by Russian economic and political upheaval, President Clinton offered Boris Yeltsin a prescription for tough reforms.
1998
Mark McGwire of the St. Louis Cardinals hit his 56th and 57th home runs, breaking the one-season record set by Hack Wilson in 1930.
1999
Ten American tourists and two Tanzanians were killed when their small plane crashed as they were leaving Serengeti National Park.
1999
Twenty-two of baseball's 68 permanent umpires found themselves jobless, the fallout from their union's failed attempt to force an early start to negotiations for a new labor contract.
2005
Bush authorizes oil release from Strategic Petroleum Reserve
2005
Shots reported during Superdome evacuation
2005
Israel rules victims of Jewish terrorist not entitled to lifelong support
2005
Hurricane Katrina: Resources regarding missing/located people
2005
New Caledonia prepares for 2011 South Pacific Games
2005
Józef Rotblat, 1995 Nobel Peace Prize winner, dies
2005
Idaho companies claim of new record for transmitting data across a wireless link
2005
Fats Domino missing in the wake of Hurricane Katrina
2005
First executions in post-Saddam Iraq held in Baghdad
2005
Widespread looting blamed for disrupted rescue efforts in New Orleans, Louisiana
2005
UN Security Council considers Cote d'Ivoire sanctions
2005
Al-Qaida claims responsibility for London 7/7 bombings
2005
Microsoft acquires VoIP firm
2005
U.S. man murdered by wife in Hong Kong
2005
"Toxic soup" scenario in New Orleans unlikely
2005
West African cholera claims more than 500 lives, more deaths feared
2005
Nigeria bill has Taylor implications
2005
Google begins selling print ads
2005
Fats Domino rescued in New Orleans
2005
Football: Ronaldinho signs for Barcelona until 2010
2005
Talks between Pakistan, India yield apparent progress
2006
Clinical study supports pollen tablets as hay fever treatment
2006
Super high speed internet launched in New Zealand
2006
Scugog flag controversy comes to an end
2006
Tropical depression Ernesto hits Carolina's coast in U.S.
2006
Man arrested on suspicion of family murders in Greater Manchester, England
2006
Plane crash in Iran kills 80
2006
User-generated search engine "Jatalla" launched
2006
IMF proposes quota increases for China, South Korea, Mexico and Turkey
2006
Mario Lopez favored to win Dancing with the Stars
2006
Sources: State Department official source of Plame leak
2006
Gene therapy trial for skin cancer cures two terminal patients
2006
Basketball: Greece beats the United States, 101-95 on semi-final
2006
Shiv Shankar Menon to take over as India's new Foreign Secretary
2007
Crow found in Vermont is state's first West Nile case this year
2007
Four jackpot winners confirmed in US 'Mega Millions' lottery drawing
2007
Airbus A380 test flight delayed after accident
2007
Finnish terrestrial analogue TV network shut down
2007
200 yard spider web found in Lake Tawakoni State Park, East Texas
2007
Big time Democratic donor faces prison after surrender
2007
Two men charged with igniting second-largest fire in California history
2007
U.S. Sen. Larry Craig resigns over sex scandal
2007
70 insurgents killed in Afghanistan
2007
California company recalls fresh spinach over salmonella contamination
2007
Finland win first ever Eurovision Dance Contest held in London
2007
FIFA U-17 World Cup: Ghana beat Peru in Quarter finals
2008
US presidential candidate Barack Obama's lead increases after Democratic National Convention
2008
Government of the Bahamas isssues warning over Hurricane Hanna
2008
Bush to skip Republican convention to monitor Gustav
2008
Pakistan's military offensive suspended for Ramadan
2008
News agencies suggest that campaign operative for Republican Party edited article on vice presidential nominee
2009
Twitter more popular than MySpace in United Kingdom
2009
Kimi Räikkönen wins Belgian Grand Prix
2010
Telstra becomes the first in the world to switch to HSPA+ wireless Internet technology
2010
Study suggests 'sleeping sickness' parasite mutated to evade immune system defences
2010
Gunman holds hostage in U.S. television station offices
2010
EU ban on 75W bulbs comes into force
2010
The Bahamas halt all new applications for oil exploration
2010
Estonian soldier killed in southern Afghanistan
2010
Russian embassy attacked by Molotov cocktails in Minsk
2011
Florida schools begin to enforce new statewide ban on saggy pants and other revealing attire
2012
Grace Bowman withdraws from Paralympic Dressage Individual Championship Test - Grade II event
2012
China leads medal race after day two of competition at London Paralympics
2012
Paralympic table tennis silver medalist Piotr Grudzien beats Poland's Richard Csejtey
2012
Gliders win against Brazil in their Paralympic opening match
2012
Defending Paralympic table tennis gold medalist Ying Zhou defeats Slovene Andreja Dolinar in group play

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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