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|An archive of historical anniversaries that appeared on the Main Page
2017 day arrangement
- 1643 – The Westminster Assembly of Divines, assembled to restructure the Church of England, held its first meeting in Westminster Abbey, London.
- 1874 – The Remington No. 1 went on sale, becoming the first commercially successful typewriter.
- 1922 – Seven of the sixteen American railroad labor organizations in existence at the time staged a nationwide strike that lasted two months.
- 1960 – Ghana became a republic with Kwame Nkrumah (pictured) as its first president.
- 2008 – Rioting erupted in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, in response to allegations of fraud surrounding the recent legislative elections.
- 626 – During the Xuanwu Gate Incident, Prince Li Shimin led his forces to assassinate his rival brothers in a coup for the imperial throne of the Tang dynasty.
- 1644 – The combined forces of the Scottish Covenanters and the English Parliamentarians defeated the Royalists at the Battle of Marston Moor, one of the decisive encounters of the English Civil War.
- 1816 – The French frigate Méduse ran aground off the coast of today's Mauritania, with the survivors escaping on a makeshift raft, which was depicted in Théodore Géricault's painting The Raft of the Medusa.
- 1917 – White residents of East St. Louis, Illinois, burned sections of the city and shot black inhabitants as they escaped the flames.
- 1937 – Aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart (pictured) and navigator Fred Noonan disappeared over the Pacific Ocean during an attempt to make a circumnavigational flight.
- 324 – Roman emperor Constantine the Great defeated former colleague Licinius in the Battle of Adrianople.
- 1863 – Pickett's Charge, a futile Confederate infantry assault against Union Army positions, occurred during the final and bloodiest day of fighting in the Battle of Gettysburg, marking a turning point in the American Civil War.
- 1940 – Second World War: The British Navy attacked the French fleet (French destroyer Mogador pictured), fearing that the ships would fall into German hands after the armistice between those two nations.
- 1970 – The Troubles: The British Army imposed the Falls Curfew on Belfast, Northern Ireland, which only resulted in greater Irish republican resistance.
- 2005 – Same-sex marriage became legal in Spain.
- 414 – Aelia Pulcheria proclaimed herself regent over her brother Theodosius II and made herself Augusta and Empress of the Eastern Roman Empire.
- 1837 – The Grand Junction Railway, the world's first long-distance railway, opened between Birmingham and Liverpool.
- 1950 – The United States' anti-communist propaganda source Radio Free Europe made its first broadcast aimed at Czechoslovakia.
- 1982 – Four Iranian diplomats were kidnapped after they were stopped at a checkpoint in northern Lebanon by Lebanese Phalange forces.
- 2005 – The NASA space probe Deep Impact collided with the nucleus of the comet Tempel 1 (impact pictured), excavating debris from its interior so that its composition could be studied.
- 1775 – The Second Continental Congress of Britain's Thirteen Colonies adopted the Olive Branch Petition in the hopes of avoiding war with Great Britain.
- 1865 – Royal assent was given to an Act of Parliament allowing the Talyllyn Railway to carry passengers by steam haulage – the first narrow-gauge railway in Britain to do so from the start.
- 1950 – Korean War: In the first encounter between North Korean and American forces, the unprepared and undisciplined U.S. Army task force was routed.
- 1977 – General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq (pictured) overthrew Pakistani Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in a military coup d'état.
- 2004 – Indonesia held its first direct presidential elections, which resulted in the election of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as President of Indonesia after the second round on September 20.
- 1614 – The Ottoman Empire made a final attempt to conquer the island of Malta, but were beaten back by the Knights Hospitaller.
- 1892 – During a steelworkers' strike in Homestead, Pennsylvania, a day-long battle between strikers and Pinkerton agents resulted in ten deaths and dozens of people wounded.
- 1919 – The Royal Air Force's R34 airship (pictured) landed in Mineola, New York, to complete the first east-to-west transatlantic crossing by an aircraft.
- 1957 – At a concert by the Quarrymen at the St. Peter's Church Woolton Garden fete, band member John Lennon met Paul McCartney, triggering a series of events that led to the forming of the Beatles.
- 1997 – The Troubles: In response to the Drumcree dispute, five days of unrest began in Irish nationalist districts of Northern Ireland.
- 1456 – Twenty-five years after her death, Joan of Arc was declared innocent of heresy in a posthumous retrial.
- 1777 – American Revolutionary War: British forces caught up with American troops withdrawing from Ticonderoga and captured over 200 men.
- 1911 – The United States, United Kingdom, Japan, and Russia signed the North Pacific Fur Seal Convention banning open-water seal hunting (Northern fur seal pictured), the first international treaty to address wildlife conservation issues.
- 1954 – After the culmination of the 1954 Guatemalan coup d'état, Carlos Castillo Armas was sworn in as President of Guatemala.
- 1997 – Iraqi Kurdish Civil War: The Turkish Armed Forces concluded Operation Hammer, having successfully destroyed Kurdistan Workers' Party units in Northern Iraq.
- 1709 – Great Northern War: Peter I of Russia defeated Charles XII of Sweden in Poltava, effectively ending Sweden's role as a major power in Europe.
- 1808 – Joseph Bonaparte (pictured) approved the Bayonne Statute, a royal charter intended as the basis for his rule as King of Spain during the Peninsular War.
- 1879 – Led by George W. De Long, the ill-fated Jeannette Expedition departed San Francisco to reach the North Pole by pioneering a route through the Bering Strait.
- 1947 – After various news agencies reported the capture of a "flying disc" by U.S. Army Air Force personnel in Roswell, New Mexico, the military stated that what was actually recovered was debris from an experimental high-altitude surveillance weather balloon.
- 1972 – Palestinian author Ghassan Kanafani was assassinated by Mossad agents in response to the Lod Airport massacre.
- 1745 – War of the Austrian Succession: The French victory in the Battle of Melle enabled their subsequent capture of Ghent.
- 1877 – The inaugural Wimbledon Championship, the world's oldest tennis tournament, began.
- 1900 – Queen Victoria gave her royal assent to an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, ratifying the Constitution of Australia (pictured).
- 1937 – Nitrate film being stored in a 20th Century Fox facility spontaneously combusted, destroying more than 40,000 reels of negatives and film prints.
- 1995 – Sri Lankan Civil War: After having advised civilians to take shelter in places of worship, the Sri Lanka Air Force bombed a church in Navaly, killing at least 125 people.
- 1519 – Zhu Chenhao declared Ming emperor Zhengde (pictured) a usurper, beginning the Prince of Ning rebellion.
- 1800 – Lord Wellesley, Governor-General of India, founded Fort William College in Fort William, India.
- 1942 – An American naval aviator discovered a downed Mitsubishi A6M Zero on Akutan Island, Alaska, US, which was later rebuilt and flown to devise tactics against that type of aircraft.
- 1966 – Martin Luther King Jr. led a rally in support of the Chicago Freedom Movement, one of the most ambitious civil rights campaigns in the northern United States.
- 2011 – The last edition of the British tabloid News of the World was published, closing due to allegations that it hacked the voicemails of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler, victims of the 7/7 attacks and relatives of deceased British soldiers.
- 1405 – Marking the start of Ming China's treasure voyages, Admiral Zheng He's expeditionary fleet (pictured) set sail towards foreign regions on the South China Sea and Indian Ocean.
- 1848 – London Waterloo station, Britain's busiest railway station by passenger usage, was opened by the London and South Western Railway.
- 1936 – New York City's Triborough Bridge, the "biggest traffic machine ever built", opened to traffic.
- 1960 – To Kill a Mockingbird, a novel by Harper Lee, featuring themes of racial injustice and the destruction of innocence in the American Deep South, was first published.
- 2011 – An explosion at the Evangelos Florakis Naval Base killed 13 people, including the head of the Cyprus Navy.
- 1561 – Saint Basil's Cathedral (pictured), located at the geographic center of Moscow, was consecrated.
- 1801 – French Revolutionary Wars: A squadron of British Royal Navy ships of the line defeated a larger squadron of ships from the Spanish Navy and French Navy in the Gut of Gibraltar.
- 1917 – Vigilantes forcibly deported about 1,300 striking mine workers, their supporters, and bystanders from Bisbee, Arizona, U.S., to New Mexico.
- 1963 – In Gorton, England, 16-year-old Pauline Reade disappeared, the first victim of serial killers Ian Brady and Myra Hindley.
- 2007 – Two U.S. Army AH-64 Apache helicopters conducted a series of air-to-ground attacks in Baghdad; classified cockpit gunsight footage was released to the Internet in 2010.
- 1260 – The Livonian Order suffered its greatest defeat in the 13th century in the Battle of Durbe against the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.
- 1878 – At the conclusion of the Congress of Berlin, the major powers in Europe signed the Treaty of Berlin, redrawing the map of the Balkans.
- 1962 – In an unprecedented action, British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan dismissed seven members of his Cabinet.
- 1973 – Watergate scandal: Under questioning by Senate investigators, White House deputy chief of staff Alexander Butterfield revealed the existence of a secret taping system (tape recorder pictured) in the Oval Office.
- 2003 – French DGSE personnel aborted an operation to rescue Colombian politician Íngrid Betancourt from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, causing a political scandal when details were leaked to the press six days later.
- 1789 – French Revolution: Parisians stormed the Bastille (pictured), freeing its inmates and taking the prison's large quantities of arms and ammunition.
- 1950 – In an early battle of the Korean War, North Korean troops began attacking the headquarters of the American 24th Infantry Division in Taejon, South Korea.
- 1958 – Faisal II, the last king of Iraq, was overthrown by a military coup d'état led by Abd al-Karim Qasim.
- 1987 – Over 100 mm (3.9 in) of rain fell in a two-and-a-half-hour period in Montreal, causing severe flooding and over C$220 million in damages.
- 1995 – The MPEG-2 Audio Layer III audio coding format was given the filename extension by which it became known: MP3.
- 1799 – French soldiers uncovered the Rosetta Stone (pictured) in Fort Julien, near the Egyptian port city of Rashid.
- 1815 – Aboard HMS Bellerophon, Napoleon surrendered to Royal Navy Captain Frederick Lewis Maitland to finally end the Napoleonic Wars.
- 1910 – In his book Clinical Psychiatry, Emil Kraepelin gave a name to Alzheimer's disease, naming it after his colleague Alois Alzheimer.
- 1959 – Five hundred thousand American steelworkers went on strike, closing nearly every steel mill in the country.
- 1997 – American serial killer Andrew Cunanan gunned down fashion designer Gianni Versace in Miami, Florida.
- 1769 – Spanish friar Junípero Serra founded Mission San Diego de Alcalá (pictured), the first Franciscan mission in the Alta California region of New Spain.
- 1782 – Mozart's opera Die Entführung aus dem Serail made its premiere, after which Emperor Joseph II anecdotally made the comment that it had "too many notes".
- 1931 – Emperor of Ethiopia Haile Selassie signed the nation's first constitution, intended to officially replace the Fetha Nagast, which had been the supreme law since the Middle Ages.
- 1983 – A British Airways Sikorsky S-61 helicopter crashed in the Celtic Sea in thick fog, killing 20 of the 26 on board, and sparking a review of helicopter safety in the United Kingdom.
- 2007 – A magnitude 6.6 MW earthquake struck Niigata Prefecture, Japan, causing a leak of radioactive gases from the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant.
- 1453 – The Battle of Castillon, the last conflict of the Hundred Years' War, ended with the English losing all landholdings in France, except Calais.
- 1771 – Dene men, acting as guides to Samuel Hearne on his exploration of the Coppermine River in present-day Nunavut, Canada, massacred a group of about 20 Copper Inuit.
- 1918 – RMS Carpathia (pictured), which had rescued the survivors of the RMS Titanic sinking, was itself sunk by a German U-boat.
- 1944 – Two ships laden with ammunition for World War II exploded at the Port Chicago Naval Magazine in Port Chicago, California, killing 320 sailors and civilians, and injuring more than 400 others.
- 1992 – Queen Elizabeth II officially opened the Manchester Metrolink, the first modern street-running light rail system in the United Kingdom.
- 1806 – A gunpowder magazine explosion in Birgu, Malta, killed around 200 people.
- 1841 – Pedro II, the last Emperor of Brazil, having reigned in minority since 1831, was acclaimed, crowned and consecrated.
- 1969 – After a party on Chappaquiddick Island in Massachusetts, United States Senator Ted Kennedy (pictured) accidentally drove his car off a bridge, leading to the death of his passenger Mary Jo Kopechne, a former campaign worker.
- 1976 – At the Olympic Games in Montreal, Nadia Comăneci became the first person to score a perfect 10 in a modern Olympics gymnastics event.
- 2012 – A suicide bomber attacked an Israeli tour bus at Burgas Airport, Bulgaria, which led the European Union to list the military branch of Hezbollah as a terrorist organization.
- 1817 – Having been unsuccessful in his attempt to seize the Kingdom of Hawaii for Russia, Georg Anton Schäffer (pictured) was forced to depart for China.
- 1845 – The last major fire to affect Manhattan destroyed 345 buildings and caused at least $5 million in damage.
- 1916 – First World War: "The worst 24 hours in Australia's entire history" occurred when Australian forces suffered heavy losses in their unsuccessful assault on the Germans at the Battle of Fromelles in France.
- 1992 – A car bomb killed anti-Mafia judge Paolo Borsellino and five policemen in Palermo, Italy, less than two months after the murder of his friend and colleague Giovanni Falcone.
- 1997 – The Provisional Irish Republican Army permanently resumed its ceasefire to end its 25-year campaign against British rule in Northern Ireland.
- 1779 – Tekle Giyorgis I began the first of his six reigns as Emperor of Ethiopia.
- 1807 – French brothers Claude and Nicéphore Niépce received a patent for their Pyréolophore (diagram pictured), one of the world's first internal combustion engines.
- 1944 – Adolf Hitler survived an assassination attempt by German Resistance member Claus von Stauffenberg, who hid a bomb inside a briefcase during a conference at the Wolfsschanze military headquarters in East Prussia.
- 1987 – United Nations Security Council Resolution 598 was adopted, calling for an immediate ceasefire in the Iran–Iraq War.
- 1997 – After being fully restored, USS Constitution, one of the United States Navy's first ships, sailed for the first time in 116 years.
- 365 – A large earthquake that occurred near Crete and its subsequent tsunami caused widespread destruction throughout the eastern Mediterranean region.
- 1877 – During the Great Railroad Strike of 1877, much of central Pittsburgh was burned and looted in the Pittsburgh railway riots.
- 1925 – American high school biology teacher John T. Scopes was found guilty of violating Tennessee's Butler Act by teaching evolution in class.
- 1970 – The Aswan High Dam (pictured) in Egypt was completed after 11 years of construction.
- 2007 – Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the final book in the popular Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling, was released and sold 15 million copies in its first 24 hours, making it the fastest-selling book in history.
- 1802 – Gia Long (pictured) conquered Hanoi and unified modern-day Vietnam, which had experienced centuries of feudal warfare.
- 1894 – Despite finishing in first place in the world's first auto race, Jules-Albert de Dion did not win, as his steam-powered car was against the rules.
- 1944 – In opposition to the Polish government-in-exile, the Soviet-sponsored Polish Committee of National Liberation published its manifesto, calling for radical reforms, a continuation of fighting in World War II against Nazi Germany, nationalisation of industry, and a "decent border in the West".
- 1992 – Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar escaped from his luxurious private prison and spent the next 17 months on the run.
- 2011 – Two sequential terrorist attacks in Oslo and Utøya claimed the lives of 77 people in the deadliest attack in Norway since World War II.
- 1862 – American Civil War: Henry Halleck (pictured) was appointed general-in-chief of the Union Army.
- 1921 – The Communist Party of China was founded at the founding National Congress in Shanghai.
- 1942 – The Holocaust: The gas chambers at Treblinka extermination camp began operation, killing 6,500 Jews who had been transported from the Warsaw Ghetto the day before.
- 1974 – Following the collapse of the Greek military junta, the Metapolitefsi period began as the country transitioned to a democratic government.
- 2002 – On the 50th anniversary of its founding, the European Coal and Steel Community disbanded, and its activities and resources were absorbed by the European Community.
- 1701 – French explorer Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac established Fort Pontchartrain du Détroit, which later grew into the city of Detroit.
- 1783 – The Kingdom of Kartli-Kakheti and the Russian Empire signed the Treaty of Georgievsk, establishing Georgia as a protectorate of Russia.
- 1910 – Ottoman forces captured the city of Shkodër to put down the Albanian revolt of 1910.
- 1967 – During a speech in Montreal, French President Charles de Gaulle declared "Long live free Quebec!", a statement that was interpreted as support for Quebec independence from Canada.
- 2013 – A Spanish high-speed train derailed at Santiago de Compostela; 79 died and around 140 were injured (rescue efforts pictured).
- 1261 – Alexios Strategopoulos led the Nicaean forces of Michael VIII Palaiologos to recapture Constantinople, re-establish the Byzantine Empire, and end the Latin Empire.
- 1893 – The Corinth Canal (pictured), which bisects the narrow Isthmus of Corinth, was formally opened, connecting the Gulf of Corinth with the Aegean Sea's Saronic Gulf.
- 1965 – Bob Dylan, who had previously been known for folk music, gave a controversial performance at the Newport Folk Festival, playing songs with an electric guitar.
- 1976 – In a classic example of pareidolia, the Viking 1 spacecraft took a photo of what appeared to be a face on Mars.
- 2007 – Pratibha Patil was sworn in as the first female President of India.
- 1533 – Spanish conquest of the Inca Empire: Conquistador Francisco Pizarro executed the last independent Inca Emperor Atahualpa in Cajamarca.
- 1759 – French and Indian War: Rather than defend Fort Carillon near present-day Ticonderoga, New York, from an approaching 11,000-man British force, French Brigadier General François-Charles de Bourlamaque withdrew his troops and attempted to blow the fort up.
- 1908 – Unable to use U.S. Secret Service agents as investigators, Attorney General Charles Bonaparte established what is now the Federal Bureau of Investigation as his own staff of special agents.
- 1953 – Fidel Castro and his brother Raúl led a group of approximately 160 rebels in an unsuccessful attack on the Moncada Barracks (pictured), thus beginning the Cuban Revolution.
- 2007 – After widespread controversy throughout Wales, Shambo, a black Friesian bull that had been adopted by the local Hindu community, was slaughtered due to concerns about bovine tuberculosis.
- 1302 – Byzantine–Ottoman Wars: The Ottoman sultanate gained its first major victory against the Byzantine Empire in the Battle of Bapheus in Bithynia.
- 1916 – British mariner Charles Fryatt (pictured) was executed at Bruges, Belgium, after a court-martial found him to be a franc-tireur.
- 1953 – An armistice was signed to end hostilities in the Korean War, officially making the division of Korea indefinite by creating an approximately 4 km (2.5 mi) wide demilitarized zone across the Korean Peninsula.
- 2002 – A Ukrainian Air Force Sukhoi Su-27 aircraft crashed during an aerobatics presentation at an airshow near Lviv, Ukraine, killing 77 people and injuring over 500 others.
- 1821 – Peruvian War of Independence: Argentine general José de San Martín declared the independence of Peru from Spain.
- 1866 – At the age of 18, Vinnie Ream became the youngest artist and first woman to receive a commission from the United States government for a statue—that of Abraham Lincoln in the US Capitol rotunda.
- 1914 – Austria-Hungary declared war after rejecting Serbia's conditional acceptance of only part of the July Ultimatum following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, starting World War I.
- 1939 – The Sutton Hoo helmet (pictured) was discovered.
- 2001 – At the World Aquatics Championships in Fukuoka, Japan, Australian Ian Thorpe became the first swimmer to win six gold medals at a single World Championships.
- 1014 – Byzantine–Bulgarian wars: Forces of the Byzantine Empire defeated troops of the Bulgarian Empire at the Battle of Kleidion (pictured) in the Belasica Mountains near present-day Klyuch, Bulgaria.
- 1858 – Japan reluctantly signed the Treaty of Amity and Commerce, an unequal treaty giving the United States various commercial and diplomatic privileges.
- 1899 – The first Hague Convention, among the first formal statements of the laws of war and war crimes in international law, was signed.
- 1958 – US President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the National Aeronautics and Space Act into law, establishing a new federal non-military space agency known as NASA.
- 1987 – Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and Sri Lankan President J. R. Jayewardene signed the Indo-Sri Lanka Accord in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to resolve the ongoing Sri Lankan Civil War.
- 1811 – Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, an early leader of the Mexican War of Independence, was executed by Spanish authorities.
- 1825 – Malden Island (pictured), now one of Kiribati's Line Islands, was discovered by Captain The 7th Lord Byron.
- 1916 – German agents caused a major explosion when they sabotaged American ammunition supplies in New Jersey to prevent the materiel from being used by the Allies of World War I.
- 1950 – Four striking workers were shot dead by the Gendarmerie in Belgium at the height of the political crisis known as the Royal Question.
- 2006 – Lebanon War: The Israeli Air Force attacked a three-story building near the South Lebanese village of Qana, killing at least 28 civilians, including 16 children.
- 1423 – Hundred Years' War: The English and their Burgundian allies were victorious over the French at the Battle of Cravant near Auxerre, France.
- 1777 – The Second Continental Congress passed a resolution allowing French nobleman the Marquis de Lafayette (pictured) to enter the American revolutionary forces as a Major General.
- 1941 – The Holocaust: Under instructions from Adolf Hitler, Hermann Göring ordered SS General Reinhard Heydrich to handle "the final solution of the Jewish question".
- 1991 – The Soviet Union and the United States signed the bilateral START I treaty, the largest and most complex arms control treaty in history, which eventually removed 80% of all strategic nuclear weapons then in existence.
- 2006 – Following intestinal surgery, Fidel Castro provisionally transferred the duties of the Cuban presidency to his brother Raúl.