[an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Today in History

480
BC
Tragedian Euripides born in Salamis, Greece. "Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad"
63
BC
Emperor Augustus Caesar born in Rome. The month of August was named in his honor
1845
NY Knickerbockers become first baseball club
1920
Academy, Emmy and Golden Globe Award winning actor, Mickey Rooney born in Brooklyn, New York
1947
Emmy and Grammy Award winning actress and singer, Mary Kay Place born in Tulsa, Oklahoma
1949
Grammy and Oscar winning guitarist, songwriter and singer, Bruce Springsteen born in Freehold, New Jersey
1952
V.P. Nixon denies campaign fund fraud with his "Checkers" speech
1959
Movie and television actress, Rosalind Chao born in Anaheim, California
1969
"Paul is dead" rumors sweep the country
63
BC
Octavian (Augustus Caesar) first Roman Emperor, who introduced Pax Romana, the era of peace. born
704
Death of St. Adamnan
918
Death of Conrad I, King of Germany
1122
Diet of Worms
1307
William de Nogaret is made Chancellor of France
1553
The Sadians defeat the last of their enemies and establish themselves as rulers of Morocco.
1561
Philip II of Spain gives orders to halt colonizing efforts in Florida.
1577
William of Orange enters Brussels States-General deposes Don John
1578
Sir Humphrey Gilbert sails in search of the Northwest Passage
1595
Spain divides North America into Mission Provinces
1642
Harvard College in Cambridge, Massachusetts, held its first commencement.
1666
Franois Mansard, French architect, dies at about 68
1667
Slaves in Virginia are banned from obtaining their freedom by converting to Christianity.
1739
The Austrians sign the Treaty of Belgrade after having lost the city to the Turks.
1779
During the Revolutionary War, the American warship "Bon Homme Richard" defeated the HMS "Serapis" after the American commander, John Paul Jones, is said to have declared: "I have not yet begun to fight!"
1780
British spy John Andre was captured along with papers revealing Benedict Arnold's plot to surrender West Point to the British.
1788
Louis XVI of France declares the Parliament restored.
1800
William Holmes McGuffey, educator famous for his book Eclectic Readers born
1805
Lieutenant Zebulon Pike pays $2,000 to buy from the Sioux a 9-square-mile tract at the mouth of the Minnesota River that will be used to establish a military post, Fort Snelling.
1806
The Lewis and Clark expedition returned to St. Louis from the Pacific Northwest.
1819
Armand Hyppolyte - French physicist who first measured the speed of light and proved that light speed was finite. born
1835
Vincenzo Bellini died of dysentery, at the age of 33. Rossini wrote that "all Paris mourns."
1838
Victoria Chaflin Woodhull
1846
The planet Neptune was discovered by German astronomer Johann Gottfried Galle.
1852
William Stewart Halsted, established 1st surgical school in US born
1863
Mary Church Terrell, educator and civil rights advocate born
1870
The siege of Paris begins during the Franco-Prussian War.
1912
Mack Sennett's first Keystone short subject, a "split-reel" of two comedies starring Mabel Normand and Ford Sterling, was released.
1920
Actor Mickey Rooney born
1926
Saxophonist, John Coltrane born
1926
Gene Tunney scored a 10-round decision over Jack Dempsey to win the world heavyweight boxing title in Philadelphia.
1930
Singer Ray Charles (Hit the Road Jack, Georgia on My Mind) born
1939
Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, died in London.
1940
The George Cross is instituted for civilian acts of courage.
1943
Singer Julio Iglesias born
1945
Actor Paul Petersen ("The Donna Reed Show") born
1947
Actress-singer Mary Kay Place born
1949
Rock star Bruce Springsteen born
1950
Congress adopted the Internal Security Act, which providing for registration of communists. It was ruled later unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court.
1952
Republican vice-presidential candidate Richard M. Nixon went on television to deliver what came to be known as the "Checkers" speech as he refuted allegations of improper campaign financing.
1953
The 20th-Century Fox production "The Robe," the first movie filmed in the CinemaScope wide screen process, has its Hollywood premiere, a week after opening in New York.
1954
East German police arrest 400 citizens as U.S. spies.
1957
Nine black students who had entered Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas were forced to withdraw because of a white mob outside.
1961
Actress Elizabeth Pena born
1962
Country musician Don Herron (BR5-49) born
1962
New York's Philharmonic Hall (since renamed Avery Fisher Hall) formally opened as the first unit of the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
1962
"The Jetsons," an animated cartoon series about a space-age family, premiered on ABC-TV; it was the first program to be carried by the network in color.
1964
New York City sees the first performance of Fiddler on the Roof staring Zero Mostel
1970
Singer Ani DiFranco born
1972
Recording executive Jermaine Dupri born
1972
Rock singer Sarah Bettens (K's Choice) born
1973
Juan Peron was again elected president of Argentina after 18 years in exile. His second wife, Isabel, became vice president and succeeded him when he died 10 months later.
1981
The Reagan administration announced plans for what became known as "Radio Marti."
1986
A new opera house opened in Amsterdam under police guard to keep nuclear protesters and environmentalists away.
1986
Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze told the U.N. General Assembly a superpower summit was a ''realistic possibility.'' Controversy erupted as Japanese newspapers quoted Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone as saying minorities lowered America's ''intelligence level.''
1987
Delaware Senator Joseph Biden withdrew from the Democratic presidential race following questions about his use of borrowed quotations and the portrayal of his academic record.
1987
Bob Fosse, American dancer and choreographer dies.
1988
Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard A. Shevardnadze concluded two days of talks in Washington with Secretary of State George P. Shultz on the subjects of arms control and human rights.
1990
Iraq threatened to destroy Middle East oil fields and attack Israel if other nations tried to force it from Kuwait.
1990
South African President F.W. de Klerk arrived in the US for talks with President Bush.
1991
President Bush addressed the United Nations, urging the world body to rescind its resolution equating Zionism with racism.
1991
U.N. weapons inspectors in Baghdad discovered documents detailing Iraq's secret nuclear weapons program, triggering a standoff with Iraqi authorities.
1992
Plans for a presidential debate fell apart, with President Bush continuing to object to a single-moderator format proposed by a bipartisan commission; it was the second such cancellation.
1993
The South African parliament voted to allow blacks a role in governing.
1993
The founder of Chicago Opera Theater, Alan Stone, was named as the company's artistic director emeritus. In the new role, Stone will serve as senior adviser and consultant.
1993
Sydney, Australia, was selected to host the 2000 Summer Olympics, beating out Beijing. The Israeli parliament ratified the Israel-PLO accord.
1995
In a wide-ranging interview aboard Air Force One, President Clinton admitted he had tended in the past to get hung up on details, and pledged to do a better job in providing reassuring leadership to Americans confused by tumultuous times.
1996
Ross Perot sued the bipartisan commission that voted to keep him out of the presidential debates, arguing that excluding him would deepen public cynicism and cause his campaign "incalculable damage."
1996
Space shuttle "Atlantis" left Russia's orbiting "Mir" station with astronaut Shannon Lucid, who ended her six-month visit with tender goodbyes to her Russian colleagues.
1997
The Senate Finance Committee opened hearings into reports of alleged abuses by the Internal Revenue Service.
1997
Armed men raided an Algerian village, killing at least 200 people inaone of the worst massacres since Algeria's Islamic insurgency began.
1999
The Mars Climate Observer apparently burned up as it was about to go into orbit around the Red Planet.
1999
President Clinton vetoed the Republicans' $792 billion tax cut bill, calling it "too big, too bloated."
2005
India subsidizes girls' education to offset gender imbalance
2005
Italian Minister of Economy resigns
2005
Sony restructuring plan includes 10,000 job cuts
2005
St. Anthony Foundation provides hope
2005
World Food Program told to leave North Korea
2005
WinMX shut down following RIAA requests
2005
Hurricane Rita turns toward Texas-Louisiana border
2005
Parts of New Orleans flood again
2005
Ask Jeeves to remove valet from website
2005
Katrina conspiracy meteorologist quits Idaho TV News
2005
Google launches new blog search engine
2006
First successful anti-coup protest in Thailand
2006
French newspaper suggests Osama bin Laden may be dead
2006
Estonia elects Toomas Hendrik Ilves as President
2006
U.S. Navy officially retires F-14
2006
Interview with Sean Semper-Whyte, City Council candidate for Ward 6 in Mississauga, Canada
2006
Mayfield Exposed! highlights artworks of Brampton high school students
2006
Google convicted in case brought by Belgian press
2007
Mime Marcel Marceau dies at age 84
2007
Yasuo Fukuda is elected as LDP President, Japan
2007
Israel releases 90 Palestinian prisoners
2007
Subtropical storm forms over the Altantic
2008
Adam Cooney wins Brownlow Medal
2008
WWE Raw Results from Cincinnati, OH for September 22, 2008
2008
Stressed plants produce aspirin-like chemical
2008
Mass delivery of anti-Islamic DVDs in swing voting states
2008
First Google Android phone unveiled, will be available soon
2008
Gordon Brown: I can lead Britain through economic crisis
2008
School shooting in Kauhajoki, Finland kills eleven
2008
Swiss cabinet reorganised, Finance Minister in coma
2008
CanadaVOTES: NDP candidate Hana Razga running in Edmonton—Leduc
2008
Republican Congressman Ron Paul endorses Constitution Party nominee Chuck Baldwin for President of the United States
2008
American war deserter given stay of deportation in Canada
2008
Australian frog is rediscovered after 17 years
2008
CanadaVOTES: NDP candidate Katy Austin running in Simcoe—Grey
2009
Activists claim police harrassment as G20 summit nears
2009
Chess grandmasters Kasparov and Karpov play match in Spain
2009
Twelve killed by roadside bombs in Afghanistan
2009
Carter: US "likely behind" Venezuela coup
2009
Red dust storm engulfs Sydney, Australia
2009
Pope Benedict XVI announces visit to United Kingdom
2009
Michael Jackson film "This Is It" to be premiered in at least 15 world cities simultaneously
2011
US hikers freed after two years of custody in Iran
2011
Congressman Thad McCotter ends bid for U.S. president
2012
Scottish police arrest man over child sexual assault in Clydebank supermarket
2012
U.S. President creates Chimney Rock National Monument

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.

Select a section