3761 BC – The epoch of the modern Hebrew calendar (Proleptic Julian calendar).
336 Pope Mark died, leaving the papacy vacant.
1513 Battle of La Motta: Spanish troops under Ramón de Cardona defeated the Venetians.
1542 Explorer Cabrillo discovered Santa Catalina Island off the California coast.
1571 The Battle of Lepanto – the Holy League (Spain and Italy) destroyed the Turkish fleet.
1763 George III issued British Royal Proclamation of 1763, closing aboriginal lands in North America north and west of Alleghenies to white settlements.
1777 American Revolutionary War: The Americans defeated the British in the Second Battle of Saratoga, also known as the Battle of Bemis Heights.
1780 American Revolutionary War: Battle of Kings Mountain American Patriot militia defeat Loyalist irregulars led by British colonel Patrick Ferguson in South Carolina.
1800 French corsair Robert Surcouf, commander of the 18-gun ship La Confiance, captured the British 38-gun Kent inspiring the traditional French song Le Trente-et-un du mois d’août.
1826 The Granite Railway began operations as the first chartered railway in the U.S.
1840 Willem II became King of the Netherlands.
1864 American Civil War: Battle of Darbytown Road: the Confederate forces’ attempt to regain ground that had been lost around Richmond is thwarted.
1868 Cornell University held opening day ceremonies; initial student enrollment was 412, the highest at any American university to that date.
1870 Franco-Prussian War – Siege of Paris: Leon Gambetta fled Paris in a balloon.
1879 Germany and Austria-Hungary signed the “Twofold Covenant” and created the Dual Alliance.
1900 Heinrich Himmler, German Nazi official, was born (d. 1945).
1912 The Helsinki Stock Exchange‘s first transaction.
1914 Sarah Churchill, British actress, was born (d. 1982).
1916 Georgia Tech defeated Cumberland University 222-0 in the most lopsided college football game in American history.
1917 Count Felix Graf von Luckner, the German “Sea-Devil” was imprisoned in New Zealand.
1919 KLM, the flag carrier of the Netherlands, was founded. It is the oldest airline still operating under its original name.
1920 The Suwalki Agreement between Poland and Lithuania was signed.
1931 Desmond Tutu, South African archbishop and Nobel Laureate, was born.
1933 Air France was inaugurated, after being formed from a merger of 5 French airlines.
1934 Aeromexico was inaugareted 75 years after it becomes the # 1 airline in Mexico.
1939 – John Hopcroft, American computer scientist was born.
1940 World War II: the McCollum memo proposed bringing the United States into the war in Europe by provoking the Japanese to attack the United States.
1942 World War II: The October Matanikau action on Guadalcanal began as United States Marine Corps forces attacked Japanese Army units along the Matanikau River.
1944 World War II: Uprising at Birkenau concentration camp, Jews burned down the crematoria.
1949 German Democratic Republic (East Germany) formed.
1952 Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister and former President of the Russian Federation, was born.
1955 Beat poet Allen Ginsberg read his poem “Howl” for the first time at a poetry reading in San Francisco.
1958 President of Pakistan Iskander Mirza, with the support of General Ayub Khan and the army, suspended the 1956 constitution, imposed martial law, and cancelled the elections scheduled for January 1959.
1959 U.S.S.R. probe Luna 3 transmitted its first ever photographs of the far side of the moon.
1962 U.S.S.R. performed nuclear test at Novaya Zemlya.
1963 John F. Kennedy signed ratification for Partial Test Ban Treaty.
1977 The adoption of the Fourth Soviet Constitution.
1982 Cats opened on Broadway.
1985 The Achille Lauro was hijacked by Palestine Liberation Organization.
1993 The Great Flood of 1993 ended at St. Louis, Missouri, 103 days after it began.
2001 The U.S. invasion of Afghanistan started with an air assault and covert operations on the ground.
2004 King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia abdicated.
2003 – An historic recall election took place in California in which the sitting Governor Gray Davis a Democrat was overwhelmingly voted out of office. Actor/bodybuilder and Republican candidate Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected to be the 38th Governor of California over fellow Republican Tom McClintock and Democrat Cruz Bustamante who at the time was the sitting Lt. Governor of California.
2006 – Russian journalist and human rights activist Anna Politkovskaya was shot and killed outside her home in Moscow.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia