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1822 - Antonio Jose de Sucre defeated the Spanish royalists at the battle of Pichincha, securing the independence of Quito, later to become Ecuador.
1830 - The first passenger ralroad in the United States began service in Maryland.
1844 - Samuel F.B. Morse tapped out the message “What hath God wrought” in, what is still called, Morse Code. The development inaugurated America’s telegraph industry. The message was sent from Washington, DC to Baltimore, Maryland.
1856 - The Pottawatomie Massacre took place in Kansas. A pro-slavery settlement in Franklin County was attacked by an anti-slavery group led by John Brown.
1859 - Madame Caroline Miolan-Carvalho sang Charles Gounod’s "Ave Maria" in its first public performance.
1862 - The new Westminster Bridge in London was completely opened.
1881 - About 200 people died when the Candian ferry "princess Victoryia" sank near London, Ontario.
1883 - The Brooklyn Bridge - linking Manhattan and Brooklyn in New York City - officially opened. At the time, it was the world’s longest suspension bridge. It is held together with 5,296 bound-steel cables. The Brooklyn Bridge, designed by John A. Roebling, took 14 years to build. The span is 1,595 feet long, cost $16 million to construct and no, it’s not for sale!
1899 - W. T. McCullough of Boston, Massachusetts opened the first public garage. One could rent space for selling, storing and repairing vehicles.
1913 - The U.S. Department of Labor entered into its first strike mediation. The dispute of the Railroad Clerks of the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad was settled nine days later.
1920 - French President Paul Deschanel fell from a train and was found later wandering along the track in his pajamas.
1930 - Amy Johnson landed her Gypsy Moth plane Jason at Darwin in Northern Australia, the first woman to fly solo from England.
1931 - The Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O) began service on the "Columbian" run between New York City and Washington, DC. The passenger train was the first train with air conditioning throughout.
1935 - The first major-league baseball game to be played under the lights saw the Cincinnati Reds defeat Philadelphia 2-1 at Crosley Field.
1938 - Art Kassel’s orchestra recorded a song for Bluebird Records that may not have been a smash hit, but had a title to die for: "So You Left Me for the Leader of a Swing Band".
1941 - The British cruiser HMS Hood was sunk by the German battleship Bismarck, killing over 1,300.
1950 - ‘Sweetwater’ (Nat) Clifton’s contract was purchased by the New York Knicks. Sweetwater played for the Harlem Globetrotters and became the first black player in the NBA.
1953 - A previously unknown actor, Rod Steiger, starred in "Marty" on the "Goodyear Playhouse". Paddy Chayefsky wrote the original TV play and then adapted it for the Oscar-winning film.
1954 - The first traveling sidewalk in a railroad station was moving right along its first day of operation, in Jersey City, New Jersey.
1958 - United Press International was formed through a merger of the United Press and the International News Service.
1962 - The officials of the National Football League ruled that halftime of regular season games would be cut to 15 minutes.
1962 - Barbados, Leeward and Windward delegates, the "Little Eight," agree with the British on the formation of a new West Indies Federation.
1962 - Malcolm Scott Carpenter completed the second U.S. manned orbital space flight, when Aurora 7 splashed down after three trips around the Earth.
1964 - In Lima, Peru, more than 300 soccer fans were killed and over 500 others were injured during a riot and panic following an unpopular ruling by a referee in a Peru vs. Argentina soccer game. It was the worst soccer-related disaster on record.
1968 - In the continuing student and labor unrest in France, President De Gaulle proposed a referendum and rioting students set fire to the Paris bourse.
1968 - At their home in Cheyne Walk, London, singers Mick Jagger and Marianne Faithfull were arrested for possession of pot and released on a 50-pound bail.
1969 - "Get Back," by The Beatles, zoomed to Number 1 on Billboard's record charts on this date, and remained there for 5 weeks.
1970 - The Mississippi State Commission for Educational TV reversed an earlier decision banning the showing of the children's television program, Sesame Street.
1974 - After nine years on TV, the last "Dean Martin Show" was seen on NBC. Dean’s lovely group, The Golddiggers returned to bid farewell in the show that had been seen in a variety of formats on Thursday and, later, on Friday evenings.
1976 - The British and French Concordes made their first commercial flights from London and Paris respectively to Washington Dulles International Airport in just under four hours.
1977 - The Kremlin ousted Soviet President Nikolai Podgorny from the Communist Party's ruling Politburo.
1980 - Iran rejected a call by the World Court in The Hague to release the American hostages.
1981 - Bobby Unser was first to the checkered flag for his third major victory since 1968. He won the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” the Indianapolis 500. Race stewards took the win away from Unser the next day and awarded it to Mario Andretti. It was the first time a driver had been stripped of the championship. Race officials, looking at videotape, said that Unser had violated the caution light rule and penalized him one lap.
1981 - President Jaime Roldos Aguilera of Ecuador and seven others were killed in a terrorist-directed air crash.
1982 - In the Iran-Iraq war, Iranian troops recaptured Khorramshahr after it had been occupied by Iraq for 20 months.
1983 - The Brooklyn Bridge celebrated its 100th birthday with a huge fireworks display.
1984 - Ralph Sampson, one of the twin towers of the NBA’s Houston Rockets, became the first unanimous choice for Rookie of the Year since Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul-Jabar) of the LA Lakers in 1970.
1984 - Iranian warplanes attacked the Liberian-registered tanker Chemical Venture off the coast of Saudi Arabia.
1986 - Montreal skated past Calgary 4-3 to capture its 23rd National Hockey League Stanley Cup championship this night. No other major North American pro-sports franchise has earned as many titles.
1986 - Whitney Houston’s "Greatest Love of All" was starting week number two of a three-week stay at number one.
1989 - The mother of a 16-year-old girl filed suit for damages, claiming that 25-year-old film actor Rob Lowe used his fame to seduce her daughter into appearing in a pornographic video. Neither the girl nor her father, who had custody of her, filed any charges against Lowe.
1992 - Conservative Thomas Klestil won the Austrian presidential election, succeeding Kurt Waldheim.
1993 - Eritrea achieved independence from Ethiopia after a 30-year civil war.
1993 - Violent demonstrations broke out in Tibet against Chinese rule.
1994 - About 270 Muslims performing the annual hajj pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia were killed in a stampede.
1994 - Four men convicted of bombing New York's World Trade Center; each was sentenced to 240 years in prison.
1996 - Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani signed a peace agreement with one-time arch-foe and former prime minister Gulbuddin Hekmatyar in Kabul.
1997 - TV's Home Improvement star Tim Allen was arrested in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, for drunk driving.
1999 - "And the winner is ... " actor Shemar Moore announced at the Daytime Emmy awards, "The streak is over! Susan Lucci!" The announcement appeared to stun Lucci - who had been passed over for the award since she was first nominated in 1978 - more than anyone else in the crowd. The actress, who played Erica Kane on All My Children since 1970, received a standing ovation that lasted nearly 3 minutes at the Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York. "I truly never believed that this would happen," she told the audience.
1999 - The hour-long finale of the popular sitcom Mad About You, starring Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt, aired on NBC.