1608 – John Smith was elected president of the Jamestown, VA colony council.
1794 – America’s first non-denominational college was charted. Blount College later became the University of Tennessee.
1813 – The first defeat of British naval squadron occurred in the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812. The leader of the U.S. fleet sent the famous message “We have met the enemy, and they are ours” to U.S. General William Henry Harrison.
1845 – King Willem II opened Amsterdam Stock exchange.
1846 – Elias Howe received a patent for his sewing machine.
1847 – The first theater opened in Hawaii.
1862 – Rabbi Jacob Frankel became the first Jewish Army chaplain.
1897 – British police arrest George Smith for drunken driving. It was the first DWI.
1899 – A second quake in seven days hit Yakutat Bay, AK. It measured 8.6.
1913 – The Lincoln Highway opened. It was the first paved coast-to-coast highway in the U.S.
1919 – New York City welcomed home 25,000 soldiers and General John J. Pershing who had served in the First Division during World War I.
1919 – Austria and the Allies signed the Treaty of St.-Germain-en-Laye. Austria recognized the independence of Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia.
1921 – The Ayus Autobahn in Germany opened near Berlin. The road is known for its nonexistent speed limit.
1923 – The Irish Free state joined the League of Nations.
1926 – Germany joined the League of Nations.
1935 – “Popeye” was heard on NBC radio for the first time.
1939 – Canada declared war on Germany.
1940 – In Britain, Buckingham Palace was hit by German bomb.
1942 – U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt mandated gasoline rationing as part of the U.S. wartime effort.
1943 – German forces began their occupation of Rome during World War II.
1948 – Mildred “Axis Sally” Gillars was indicted for treason in Washington, DC. Gillars was a Nazi radio propagandist during World War II. She was convicted and spent 12 years in prison.
1950 – Eddie Cantor began working on TV on the “Colgate Comedy Hour” on NBC.
1951 – Britain began an economic boycott of Iran.
1953 – Swanson began selling its first “TV dinner.”
1955 – “Gunsmoke” premiered on CBS.
1955 – Bert Parks began a 25-year career as host of the “Miss America Pageant” on NBC.
1956 – Great Britain performed a nuclear test at Maralinga, Australia.
1961 – Mickey Mantle tied a major league baseball record for home runs when he hit the 400th of his career.
1963 – Twenty black students entered public schools in Alabama at the end of a standoff between federal authorities and Alabama governor George C. Wallace.
1972 – Gayle Sayers (Chicago Bears) retired from the National Football League (NFL).
1974 – Lou Brock (St. Louis Cardinals) set a new major league baseball record when he stole his 105th base of the season.
1977 – “Mickey Finn” appeared in the comic pages for the last time.
1979 – U.S. President Carter granted clemency to four Puerto Rican nationalists who had been imprisoned for an attack on the U.S. House of Representatives in 1954 and an attempted assassination of U.S. President Truman in 1950.
1981 – Pablo Picasso’s mural Guernica was received in the town of Guernica.
1984 – The Federal Communications Commission changed a rule to allow broadcasters to own 12 AM and 12 FM radio stations. The previous limit was 7 of each.
1989 – Hungary gave permission to thousands of East German refugees and visitors to immigrate to West Germany.
1990 – Iran agreed to resume full diplomatic ties with past enemy Iraq.
1990 – Iraq’s Saddam Hussein offered free oil to developing nations in an attempt to win their support during the Gulf War Crisis.
1992 – In Minneapolis, MN, a federal jury struck down professional football’s limited free agency system.
1998 – Mac Davis received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
1998 – U.S. President Clinton met with members of his Cabinet to apologize, ask forgiveness and promise to improve as a person in the wake of the scandal involving Monica Lewinsky.
1998 – Northwest Airlines announced an agreement with pilots, ending a nearly two-week walkout.
1999 – A bronze sculpture of a war horse just over 24 feet high was dedicated in Milan, Italy.
2002 – Florida tested its new elections system. The test resulted in polling stations opening late and problems occurred with the touch screen voting machines.
2002 – The “September 11: Bearing Witness to History” exhibit opened at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.
2002 – Switzerland became the 190th member of the United Nations.