1066 – Eighteenth recorded perihelion passage of Halley’s Comet. Halley’s Comet is the only naked-eye comet that may appear twice in a human’s lifetime. It last appeared in the inner Solar System and is expected to return in the year 2061.
1490 – Earliest dated edition of Maimonides “Mishneh Torah” is published
1836 – Coin Press invented by Franklin Beale
1857 – Elisha Otis’ first successful passenger elevator is installed in the five-story E.V Haughwout Building at the corner of Broadway and Broom. The elevator was powered by a steam engine placed in the basement
1896 – The Raines Law, a liquor tax, is passed by the New York State Legislature. It also restricted Sunday sale of alcohol to hotels. The state defined a hotel as a business with at least ten rooms for lodging which served sandwiches with its liquor. Many saloons resorted to opening “Raines law hotels” to circumvent the law
1903 – Wright brothers obtain airplane patent
1921 – Germany announces it will be unable to meet its WWI reparation payments
1936 – Physician Joseph Hamilton injects a leukemia patient with a sodium radioisotope, the first intravenous injection of a human with a radioisotope
1957 – United States army sells last homing pigeons. Pigeons, able to fly fast and high, were often used as military messengers, and played an important role in WWI, the Franco-Prussian War, and many others before these. Thirty-two pigeons have been decorated with the Dickin Medal, which honors animals in war.
1993 – New York Knicks and Phoenix Suns get into a major brawl, resulting in multiple suspensions and $160,000 in fines from the league.
1995 – A revival of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” opens at the Richard Rodgers Theatre – the same 46th Street Theater the musical debuted in 1961
2001 – The Russian Mir space station is disposed of, breaking up in the atmosphere before falling into the southern Pacific Ocean near Fiji.
1699 – John Bartram, naturalist and explorer, father of American botany
1887 – Juan Gris, born José Victoriano González-Pérez in Madrid, cubist painter and sculptor
1917 – Johnny Guarnieri, jazz and stride pianist is born in New York City
1369 – Pedro, the Cruel, King/tyrant of Castile & Leon, murdered at thirty-four
1801 – Tsar Paul I of Russia is struck with a sword, strangled, and trampled to death in his bedroom at St. Michael’s Castle at age forty-eight
1991 – Dominic Bellissimo, creator of buffalo chicken wings, dies at sixty-eight
2008 – France’s former first lady Cecilia Ciganer-Albeniz, age fifty, weds Moroccan-born Richard Attias, founder of the New York Forum, and age forty-eight, at Rockefeller Center