1598 – Playwright and poet Ben Jonson was indicted for manslaughter as the result of a duel.
1692 – The last hanging of those convicted of witchcraft in the Salem witch trials; the others were all eventually released.
1735 – Robert Walpole became the first British “Prime Minister” (actually First Lord of the Treasury) to live at 10 Downing Street.
1761 – George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz were crowned King and Queen, respectively, of the Kingdom of Great Britain.
1776 – Nathan Hale was hanged for spying during the American Revolution.
1789 – The office of United States Postmaster General was established.
1862 – A preliminary version of the Emancipation Proclamation was released by Abraham Lincoln.
1877 – Rudolf Virchow delivered an anti-Darwinian speech to the Congress of German Naturalist and Physicians, Munich where he spoke against the teaching of the theory of evolution in schools.
1896 – Queen Victoria surpassed her grandfather King George III as the longest reigning monarch in British history.
1910 – The Duke of York’s Picture House opened in Brighton, now the oldest continually operating cinema in Britain.
1914 – A German submarine sunk three British cruisers over a seventy-minute period, killing almost 1500 sailors.
1919 – The steel strike of 1919, led by the Amalgamated Association of Iron and Steel Workers, began in Pennsylvania before spreading across the United States.
1937 – Date celebrated as the first International Hobbit Day and the birthdays of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins.
1941 – The Holocaust in Ukraine: On the Jewish New Year Day, the German SS murdered 6,000 Jews in Vinnytsia, Ukraine. Those were the survivors of the previous killings that took place a few days earlier in which about 24,000 Jews were executed.
1948 – Gail Halvorsen officially started parachuting candy to children as part of the Berlin Airlift.
1950 – Omar Bradley was promoted to rank of 5-star general in the United States Army.
1955 – On BBC radio, fictional character Grace Archer was killed in a barn fire on Brookfield Farm – the BBC denied this was to spoil the launch of rival network ITV.
1955 – Commercial television began in the UK with the launch of ITV. It aired the first advertisement on UK TV, for Gibbs SR toothpaste.
1957 – Western “Maverick” premiered on ABC television. It starred James Garner.
1964 – “Man from U.N.C.L.E.” premiered on NBC. It starred Robert Vaughn and David McCallum.
1973 – Henry Kissinger was sworn in as America’s first Jewish Secretary of State.
1975 – Sara Jane Moore tried to assassinate U.S. President Gerald Ford, but was foiled by the Secret Service.
1976 – TV dama “Charlie’s Angels” starring Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith debuted.
1979 – A bright flash, resembling the detonation of a nuclear weapon, was observed near the Prince Edward Islands. Its cause was never determined.
1980 – John Lennon and Yoko Ono signed a recording contract with Geffen Records.
1982 – Sitcom “Family Ties starring Michael J. Fox premiered on NBC.
1983 – The Everly Brothers reunited after 10 years apart in a concert at the Royal Albert Hall in London.
1989 – “Baywatch”, starring David Hasselhoff and Pamela Anderson, debuted on NBC.
1991 – The Dead Sea Scrolls were made available to the public for the first time.
1993 – A barge struck a railroad bridge near Mobile, Alabama, and caused the deadliest train wreck in Amtrak history. Forty-seven passengers were killed.
1994 – “Friends” TV sitcom created by David Crane and Marta Kauffman debuted on NBC, starring Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer.
1995 – An E-3B AWACS crashed outside Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska after multiple bird strikes to two of the four engines soon after takeoff; all 24 on board were killed.
1997 – Elton John released “Candle in the Wind 1997”, a tribute to Diana, Princess of Wales, in the US.
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