38 BC – Octavian divorces his wife Scribonia and marries Livia Drusilla, ending the fragile peace between the Second Triumvirate and Sextus Pompey.
395 – Upon the death of Emperor Theodosius I, the Roman Empire is permanently divided into the Eastern Roman Empire under Arcadius, and the Western Roman Empire under Honorius.
1524 – Giovanni da Verrazzano sets sail westward from Madeira to find a sea route to the Pacific Ocean.
1811 – Mexican War of Independence: In the Battle of Calderón Bridge, a heavily outnumbered Spanish force of 6,000 troops defeats nearly 100,000 Mexican revolutionaries.
1893 – Lorrin A. Thurston, along with the Citizens’ Committee of Public Safety, led the Overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaiiand the government of Queen Liliʻuokalani.
1899 – The United States takes possession of Wake Island in the Pacific Ocean.
1917 – The United States pays Denmark $25 million for the Virgin Islands.
1929 – Popeye the Sailor Man, a cartoon character created by E. C. Segar, first appears in the Thimble Theatre comic strip.
1945 – Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg is taken into Soviet custody while in Hungary; he is never publicly seen again.
1950 – The Great Brink’s Robbery: Eleven thieves steal more than $2 million from an armored car company’s offices in Boston.
1961 – President Dwight D. Eisenhower delivers a televised farewell address to the nation three days before leaving office, in which he warns against the accumulation of power by the “military-industrial complex” as well as the dangers of massive spending, especially deficit spending.
1977 – Capital punishment in the US resumes after a ten-year hiatus, as convicted murderer Gary Gilmore is executed by firing squad in Utah.
1998 – Lewinsky scandal: Matt Drudge breaks the story of the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky affair on his Drudge Report website.
2007 – The Doomsday Clock is set to five minutes to midnight in response to North Korea’s nuclear testing.
1574 – Robert Fludd, English physician, astrologer, and mathematician (d. 1637)
1706 – Benjamin Franklin, American publisher, inventor, and politician, 6th President of Pennsylvania (d. 1790)
1876 – Frank Hague, American lawyer and politician, 30th Mayor of Jersey City (d. 1956)
1899 – Al Capone, American mob boss (d. 1947)
1911 – John S. McCain Jr., American admiral (d. 1981)
1928 – Vidal Sassoon, English-American hairdresser and businessman (d. 2012)
1942 – Muhammad Ali, American boxer and activist (d. 2016)
1964 – Michelle Obama, American lawyer and activist, 46th First Lady of the United States
1718 – Benjamin Church, American colonel (b. 1639)
1888 – Big Bear, Canadian tribal chief (b. 1825)
1893 – Rutherford B. Hayes, American general, lawyer, and politician, 19th President of the United States (b. 1822)
1933 – Louis Comfort Tiffany, stained glass artist (b. 1848)
1997 – Clyde Tombaugh, American astronomer and academic, discovered Pluto (b. 1906)
2007 – Art Buchwald, American journalist and author (b. 1925)
2008 – Bobby Fischer, American chess player and author (b. 1943)
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