1246 – Henry Raspe was elected anti-king by the Rhenish prelates in France.
1455 – King Henry VI was taken prisoner by the Yorkists at the Battle of St. Albans, during the War of the Roses.
1570 – Abraham Ortelius published the first modern atlas in Belgium.
1761 – In Philadelphia, the first life insurance policy was issued in the U.S.
1819 – The steamship Savannah became the first to cross the Atlantic Ocean.
1841 – Henry Kennedy received a patent for the first reclining chair.
1849 – Abraham Lincoln received a patent for the floating dry dock.
1859 – The creator of “Sherlock Holmes,” Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was born.
1868 – Near Marshfield, IN, The “Great Train Robbery” took place. The robbery was worth $96,000 in cash, gold and bonds to the seven members of the Reno gang.
1872 – The Amnesty Act restored civil rights to Southerners.
1882 – The U.S. formally recognized Korea.
1891 – The first public motion picture was given in Thomas Edison’s lab.
1892 – Dr. Washington Sheffield invented the toothpaste tube.
1900 – The Associated Press was incorporated as a non-profit news cooperative in New York.
1900 – A. DeVilbiss, Jr. patented his pendulum-type computing scale.
1900 – Edwin S. Votey received a patent for the pianola (a pneumatic piano player). It could be attached to any piano.
1906 – The Wright brothers received a patent their flying machine.
1939 – Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini signed a military alliance between Germany and Italy known as the “Pact of Steel.”
1947 – The Truman Doctrine was enacted by the U.S. Congress to appropriate military and economic aid Turkey and Greece.
1955 – A scheduled dance to be headlined by Fats Domino was canceled by police in Bridgeport, Connecticut because “rock and roll dances might be featured.”
1955 – Jack Benny did his last live network radio broadcast after a run of 23 years. He devoted his time fully to TV.
1967 – “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” premiered on PBS.
1967 – The final “To Tell the Truth” program was seen on CBS-TV.
1969 – A lunar module of Apollo 10 flew within nine miles of the moon’s surface. The event was a rehearsal for the first lunar landing.
1972 – U.S. President Nixon became the first U.S. president to visit Russia. He met with Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev.
1972 – The island Ceylon adopted a new constitution and became the republic of Sri Lanka.
1977 – Janet Guthrie set the fastest time of the second weekend of qualifying, becoming the first woman to earn a starting spot in the Indianapolis 500 since its inception in 1911.
1985 – Pete Rose passed Hank Aaron as National League run scoring leader with 2,108.
1986 – Sylvester Stallone agreed to a 10-picture, six-year deal with United Artists. He signed for a reported $15 million for each film.
1990 – In the Middle East, North and South Yemen merged to become a single state known as the Republic of Yemen.
1990 – Microsoft released Windows 3.0.
1992 – Johnny Carson hosted NBC’s “Tonight Show” for the last time. He had been host for 30 years.
1997 – Kelly Flinn, the U.S. Air Force’s first female bomber pilot certified for combat, accepted a general discharge. She thereby avoided court-martial on charges of adultery, lying and disobeying an order.
1998 – Bolivia was hit with a series of powerful earthquakes. At least 18 were killed. The quakes ranged in magnitude from 5.9 to 6.8.
1998 – New information came to light about the June 1996 bombing that killed 19 American airmen. The information indicated that Saudi citizens had been responsible and not Iranians as once believed.
1998 – A federal judge said that Secret Service agents could be compelled to testify before a grand jury in Monica Lewinsky investigation concerning U.S. President Clinton.
1998 – Voters in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland turned out to cast ballots giving approval to a Northern Ireland peace accord.
2002 – Chandra Levy’s remains were found in Washington, DC’s Rock Creek Park. She was last seen on April 30, 2001. California Congressman Gary Condit was questioned in the case due to his relationship with Levy.
2002 – In Birmingham, AL, a jury convicted former Ku Klux Klansman Bobby Frank Cherry of murder in the 1963 church bombing that killed four girls.
2002 – Barry Bonds (San Francisco Giants) hit his 583rd career home run. He tied Mark McGwire for fifth on the all-time list.
2003 – At the Colonial in Fort Worth, TX, Annika Sorenstam became the first woman to play on the PGA tour in 58 years. She ended the day at 1-over par.