521 Saint Columba, Irish Christian missionary to Scotland, was born (d. 597).
43 BC – Marcus Tullius Cicero was assassinated.
1724 – Tumult of Thorn – religious unrest is followed by the execution of nine Protestant citizens and the mayor of Thorn (Toruń) by Polish authorities.
1732 – The Royal Opera House opened at Covent Garden.
1776 – Marquis de Lafayette attempted to enter the American military as a major general.
1860 – Joseph Cook, 6th Prime Minister of Australia, was born (d. 1947).
1862 – US Civil War: Battle of Prairie Grove, Arkansas.
1863 Richard Sears, American department store founder, was born (d. 1914).
1869 – American outlaw Jesse James committed his first confirmed bank robbery in Gallatin, Missouri.
1888 Joyce Cary, Irish author, was born (d. 1957).
1921 Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Indian spiritual leader, was born.
1923 Ted Knight, American actor, was born.
1928 Noam Chomsky, American linguist and political writer was born.
1930 W1XAV in Boston, Massachusetts broadcast video from the CBS radio orchestra program, The Fox Trappers. The broadcast included the first television commercial in the United States, an advertisement for I.J. Fox Furriers, who sponsored the radio show.
1936 – Australian cricketer Jack Fingleton became the first player to score centuries in four consecutive Test innings.
1941 Attack on Pearl Harbor – The Japanese Navy attacked the US Pacific Fleet and its defending Army Air Forces and Marine air forces at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
1946 – A fire at the Winecoff Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia killed 119 people, the deadliest hotel fire in U.S. history.
1962 Prince Rainier III of Monaco revised the principality’s constitution, devolving some of his power to advisory and legislative councils.
1963 The Bassett Road machine gun murders took place.
1975 Indonesia invaded East Timor.
1983 – An Iberia Airlines Boeing 727 collided with an Aviaco DC-9 in dense fog while the two airliners are taxiing down the runway at Madrid Barajas International Airport, killing 93 people.
1987 – Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 1771 crashed near Paso Robles, California, killing all 43 on board, after a disgruntled passenger shot his ex-boss travelling on the flight, then shot both pilots and himself.
1987 – Alianza Lima air disaster. A plane crashed killing all Alianza Lima team in Ventanilla, Callao, Peru.
1988 – Spitak Earthquake: In Armenia an earthquake measuring 6.9 on the Richter scale killed nearly 25,000, injures 15,000 and leaves 400,000 homeless.
1988 Yasser Arafat recognised the right of Israel to exist.
1995 The Galileo spacecraft arrives at Jupiter, a little more than six years after it was launched by Space Shuttle Atlantis during Mission STS-34.
2003 – The Conservative Party of Canada was officially recognized after the merger of the Canadian Alliance and Progressive Conservative Party of Canada.
2005 – Rigoberto Alpizar, a passenger on American Airlines Flight 924 who allegedly claimed to have a bomb, was shot and killed by a team of U.S. federal air marshals at Miami International Airport.
2006 – A tornado struck Kensal Green, North West London, seriously damaging about 150 properties.
2007 – The Hebei Spirit oil spill began in South Korea after a crane barge that had broken free from a tug collided with the Very Large Crude Carrier, Hebei Spirit.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.