1096 – Peter the Hermit gathered his army in Cologne.
1204 – The Fourth Crusade sacked Constantinople.
1606 – England adopted the original Union Jack as its flag.
1770 – The British Parliament repealed the Townsend Acts.
1782 – The British navy won its only naval engagement against the colonists in the American Revolution at the Battle of Saints, off Dominica.
1799 – Phineas Pratt patented the comb cutting machine.
1811 – The first colonists arrived at Cape Disappointment, Washington.
1833 – Charles Gaylor patented the fireproof safe.
1861 – Fort Sumter was shelled by Confederacy, starting America’s Civil War.
1864 – Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest captured Fort Pillow, in Tennessee and slaughters the black Union troops there.
1877 – A catcher’s mask was used in a baseball game for the first time by James Alexander Tyng.
1892 – Voters in Lockport, New York, became the first in the U.S. to use voting machines.
1905 – The Hippodrome opened in New York City.
1911 – Pierre Prier completed the first non-stop London-Paris flight in three hours and 56 minutes.
1916 – American cavalrymen and Mexican bandit troops clashed at Parrel, Mexico.
1927 – The British Cabinet came out in favor of women voting rights.
1934 – F. Scott Fitzgerald novel “Tender Is the Night” was first published.
1938 – The first U.S. law requiring a medical test for a marriage license was enacted in New York.
1944 – The U.S. Twentieth Air Force was activated to begin the strategic bombing of Japan.
1945 – In New York, the organization of the first eye bank, the Eye Bank for Sight Restoration, was announced.
1945 – U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt died in Warm Spring, GA. He died of a cerebral hemorrhage at the age of 63. Harry S Truman became president.
1955 – The University of Michigan Polio Vaccine Evaluation Center announced that the polio vaccine of Dr. Jonas Salk was “safe, effective and potent.”
1961 – Soviet Yuri Alexeyevich Gagarin became first man to orbit the Earth.
1963 – Police used dogs and cattle prods on peaceful civil rights demonstrators in Birmingham, AL.
1966 – Emmett Ashford became the first African-American major league umpire.
1967 – Jim Brown made his TV acting debut on the NBC show “I Spy.”
1969 – Lucy and Snoopy of the comic strip “Peanuts” made the cover of “Saturday Review.”
1981 – The space shuttle Columbia blasted off from Cape Canaveral, FL, on its first test flight.
1982 – The British Navy began enforcing a blockade around the Falkland Islands.
1982 – Three CBS employees were shot to death in a New York City parking lot.
1983 – Harold Washington was elected the first black mayor of Chicago.
1984 – Astronauts aboard the space shuttle Challenger made the first satellite repair in orbit by returning the Solar Max satellite to space.
1984 – Israeli troops stormed a bus that had been hijacked the previous evening by four Arab terrorists. All the passengers were rescued and 2 of the hijackers were killed.
1985 – U.S. Senator Jake Garn of Utah became the first senator to fly in space as the shuttle Discovery lifted off from Cape Canaveral, FL.
1985 – In Spain, an explosion in a restaurant near a U.S. base killed 17 people.
1985 – Federal inspectors declared that four animals of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus were not unicorns. They were goats with horns that had been surgically implanted.
1987 – Texaco filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy after it failed to settle a legal dispute with Pennzoil Co.
1988 – Harvard University won a patent for a genetically altered mouse. It was the first patent for a life form.
1988 – The Chinese government named a new array of younger leaders to ensure economic reform.
1989 – In the U.S.S.R, ration cards were issued for the first time since World War II. The ration was prompted by a sugar shortage.
1992 – Disneyland Paris opened in Marne-La-Vallee, France.
1993 – NATO began enforcing a no-fly zone over Bosnia and Herzegovina.
2000 – More than 1,500 anti-drug agents raided four cities in Colombia and arrested 46 members of the “most powerful” heroin ring.
2000 – Robert Cleaves, 71, was convicted of second degree murder and was sentenced to 16 years in prison. Cleaves had repeatedly run over Arnold Guerreiro on September 30, 1998 with his car after the two had an argument.
2000 – Israel’s High Court ordered the release of eight Lebanese detainees that had been held for years without a trial.
2002 – A first edition version of Beatrix Potter’s “Peter Rabbit” sold for $64,780 at Sotheby’s. A signed first edition of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit” sold for $66,630. A copy of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone,” signed by J.K. Rowling sold for $16,660. A 250-piece collection of rare works by Charles Dickens sold for $512,650.
2002 – It was announced that the South African version of “Sesame Street” would be introducing a character that was HIV-positive.
2002 – JCPenney Chairman Allen Questrom rang the opening bell to start the business day at the New York Stock Exchange as part of the company’s centennial celebrations. James Cash (J.C.) Penney opened his first retail store on April 14, 1902.