1541 - The city of Santiago, Chile was founded.
1554 - Lady Jane Grey was beheaded after being charged with treason. She had claimed the throne of England for only nine days.
1733 - Savannah, GA, was founded by English colonist James Oglethorpe.
1870 - In the Utah Territory, women gained the right to vote.
1878 - Frederick W. Thayer patented the baseball catcher’s mask.
1879 - The first artificial ice rink opened in North America. It was at Madison Square Garden in New York City, NY.
1880 - The National Croquet League was organized in Philadelphia, PA.
1892 - In the U.S., President Lincoln's birthday was declared to be a national holiday.
1907 - A collision of the steamer Larchmont and a schooler resulted in the death of more than 300 people. The incident occurred off New England's Block Island.
1909 - The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) was founded.
1912 - China's boy emperor Hsuan T'ung announced that he was abdicating, ending the Manchu Ch'ing dynasty. Subsequently, the Republic of China was established.
1915 - The cornerstone of the Lincoln Memorial was laid in Washington, DC.
1918 - All theatres in New York City were shut down in an effort to conserve coal.
1924 - U.S. President Calvin Coolidge made the first presidential political speech on radio.
1924 - "The Eveready Hour" became radio’s first sponsored network program. The National Carbon Company was the first sponsor of a network show.
1934 - The Export-Import Bank was incorporated.
1940 - Mutual Radio presented the first broadcast of the radio play "The Adventures of Superman."
1968 - "Soul on Ice" by Eldridge Cleaver was published for the first time.
1971 - James Cash (J.C.) Penney died at the age of 95. The company closed for business for one-half day as a memorial to the company's founder.
1973 - The State of Ohio went metric, becoming the first in the U.S. to post metric distance signs.
1973 - American prisoners of war were released for the first time during the Vietnam conflict.
1985 - Johnny Carson surprised his audience by shaving the beard he had been wearing on "The Tonight Show."
1993 - In Liverpool, England, a 2-year-old boy, James Bulger, was lured away from his mother at a shopping mall and beaten to death. Two ten-year-old boys were responsible.
1998 - A U.S. federal judge declared that the presidential line-item veto was unconstitutional.
1999 - U.S. President Clinton was acquitted by the U.S. Senate on two impeachment articles. The charges were perjury and obstruction of justice.
2001 - The space probe NEAR landed on the asteroid Eros. It was the first time that any craft had landed on a small space rock.
2002 - Kenneth Lay, former Enron CEO, exercised his constitutional rights and refused to testify to the U.S. Congress about the collapse of Enron.
2002 - The trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic began at the U.N. tribunal in The Hague. Milosevic was accused of war crimes during the Balkan wars of the 1990s.
2002 - Pakistan charged three men in connection with the kidnapping of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in Karachi.
2002 - Princess Stephanie of Monaco and Franco Knie won a defamation-of-character lawsuit against the Swiss magazine "Facts." The case involved a photomontage created by the magazine.
2003 - The U.N. nuclear agency declared North Korea in violation of international treaties. The complaint was sent to the Security Council.
2004 - Mattel announced that "Barbie" and "Ken" were breaking up. The dolls had met on the set of their first television commercial together in 1961.