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1931–Actor, James (Byron) Dean, is born in Marion, Indiana. Dean's enduring fame and iconic popularity rest on his performances in only three films, all leading roles: East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause, and Giant. However, he appeared briefly in several earlier films that were uncredited: Fixed Bayonets!, Sailor Beware, Has Anybody Seen My Gal?, and Trouble Along the Way. Prior to his film work, he appeared in dramatic roles on dozens of TV programs, including CBS Television Workshop, Hallmark Hall of Fame, Tales of Tomorrow, Armstrong Circle Theatre, and The United States Steel Hour. Considering that James Dean's movie career only spanned 18 months, it's remarkable that he still enjoys such legendary status, over 50 years after his death, remaining one of cinema's most enigmatic stars.

120–Vettius Valens, astronomer, mathematician, and astrologer, is born in Antioch, Greece. His major work is the Anthologia (Anthology), 10 volumes written in Greek roughly within the period 150 to 175. The Anthology is the longest and most detailed treatise on astrology which has survived from that period. A working professional astrologer, Valens includes over 100 sample charts from his case files in the Anthology.

412–Mathematician and philosopher, Proclus, is born Proclus Lycaeus in Lycia, Constantinople. He set forth one of the most elaborate and fully developed systems of Neoplatonism. He stands near the end of the classical development of philosophy, and was very influential on Western medieval philosophy.

421–Constantius III becomes co-Emperor of the Western Roman Empire.

538–Saint Severus the Great of Antioch dies in Sakha, Eastern Roman Empire, at age 78.

882–Commander and politician, Muhammad ibn Tughj al-Ikhshid, is born in Baghdad. He was Abbasid Governor of Egypt and the founder of the Ikhshidid Dynasty.

1135–Elvira of Castile, Queen of Sicily, dies of an infectious disease at age 35.

1204–Byzantine Emperor, Alexios IV Angelos, dies of strangulation in prison, at age 22.

1238–The Mongols burn the city of Vladimir, Russia.

1250–In the Seventh Crusade, Crusaders engage Ayyubid forces in the Battle of Al Mansurah.

1265–Mongol ruler, Hulagu Khan, dies on Shahi Island in Lake Urmia, at age 46. His funeral was the only Ilkhanate funeral to feature human sacrifice. Hulagu's army greatly expanded the southwestern portion of the Mongol Empire, founding the Ilkhanate of Persia, a precursor to the eventual Safavid Dynasty, and then the modern state of Iran.

1291–Afonso IV of Portugal is born in Lisbon, Kingdom of Portugal.

1296–Przemysal II of Poland dies in Rogozno, Kingdom of Poland, at age 38. He was murdered under mysterious circumstances. After a long period of Polish High Dukes and two nominal kings, he was the first to obtain the hereditary title of King, returning Poland to the rank of Kingdom.

1347–The Byzantine civil war ends with a power-sharing agreement between John VI Kantakouzenos and John V Palaiologos.

1314–Helen of Anjou, Queen of Serbia, dies as a nun at the Church of St. Nicholas in Shkoder, Republic of Albania, at age 78.

1405–Byzantine Emperor, Constantine XI Palaiologos, is born in Constantinople. He was the last Byzantine Emperor and following his death, he became a legendary figure in Greek folklore as the "Marble Emperor" who would awaken and recover the Empire and Constantinople from the Ottomans. His death marked the end of the Roman Empire, which had continued in the East for 977 years, after the fall of the Western Roman Empire.

1575–Leiden University is founded in Leiden, Netherlands, and is given the motto Praesidium Libertatis.

1587–Mary, Queen of Scots, is executed at Fotheringhay Castle, Northamptonshire, England, at age 44. She was suspected of having been involved in the Babington Plot to murder her cousin, Queen Elizabeth I.

1590–Luis de Carabajal the Younger is tortured by the Inquisition in Mexico City, Mexico.

1601–Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, rebels against Queen Elizabeth I and the revolt is quickly crushed.

1640–Murad IV, Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, dies of cirrhosis in Instanbul, Constantinople, Ottoman Empire, at age 27.

1676–Alexis of Russia dies in Moscow, Tsardom of Russia, at age 46. On the eve of his death, the Tsardom of Russia spanned almost 2,000,000,000 acres.

1693–The College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, is granted a charter by King William III and Queen Mary II.

1696–Ivan V of Russia, dies disabled in Moscow, Russia, at age 29. At the age of 27, he was described by foreign ambassadors as senile, paralytic, and almost blind.

1707–Patriarch Dositheos II of Jerusalem dies in Constantinople, at age 65.

1720–Emperor Sakuramachi of Japan is born.

1725–Russian Emperor, Peter the Great, dies of gangrene of the bladder in Saint Petersburg, Russian Empire, at age 52.

1762–Vietnamese Emperor, Gia Long, is born Nguyen Phuc Anh in Vietnam.

1792–Caroline Augusta of Bavaria is born in Mannheim, Electoral Palatinate.

1798–Grand Duke Michael Pavlovich of Russia is born in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

1807–After two days of bitter fighting, the Russians, under Bennigsen, and the Prussians, under L'Estocq, concede the Battle of Eylau to Napoleon.

1817–Las Heras crosses the Andes with an army, joining San Martín to liberate Chile from Spain.

1820–William Tecumseh Sherman is born in Lancaster, Ohio. He was a soldier, businessman, educator, and author. He served as a general in the Union Army during the American Civil War, for which he received recognition for his outstanding command of military strategy in conducting total war against the Confederate States.

1822–Photographer and journalist, Maxime Du Camp, is born in Paris, France. In 1851, Du Camp became a founder of the Revue de Paris (suppressed in 1858), and a frequent contributor to the Revue des deux mondes. His travel books were among the first to be illustrated with photographs. In 1853, he became an officer of the Legion of Honour.

1828–Writer, Jules (Gabriel) Verne, is born in Nantes, France. He is best known for his adventure novels and profound influence on the genre of science fiction, fantasy, and surrealism. His works include Five Weeks in a Balloon, Journey to the Center of the Earth, From the Earth to the Moon, In Search of the Castaways, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Around the World in Eighty Days, and The Mysterious Island.

1837–Richard Johnson becomes the first Vice President of the United States chosen by the Senate.

1855–The Devil's Footprints mysteriously appear in Exe Estuary in East Devon and South Devon, England. After a heavy snowfall, trails of hoof-like marks appear overnight in the snow covering a total distance of 40 to 100 miles. Some people believe that they are the tracks of Satan, as they are allegedly made by a cloven hoof. Houses, rivers, haystacks, and other obstacles were traveled straight over, and footprints appeared on the tops of snow-covered roofs and high walls which lay in the footprints' path, as well as leading up to and exiting various drain pipes as small as four inches in diameter. Many theories have been put forward to explain the incident, and some aspects of its veracity have also been called into question.

1865–Delaware voters reject the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and vote to continue the practice of slavery.

1878–Philosopher, Martin Buber, is born in Vienna, Austria-Hungary. He is known for his thesis of dialogical existence, as he described in the book I and Thou. However, his work dealt with a range of issues including religious consciousness, modernity, the concept of evil, and ethics. His cousin was cosmetics entrepreneur, Helena Rubinstein, and he was also related to Karl Marx.

1879–Sanford Fleming proposes adoption of Universal Standard Time, by dividing the world into 24 equal time zones, with standard time within each zone.

1879–The England cricket team, led by Lord Harris, is attacked during a riot while in a match in Sydney, Australia.

1884–Character actor, Burt Mustin, is born Burton Hill Mustin in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Mustin began his professional acting career at the age of 67, after director William Wyler cast him in the 1951 film Detective Story. Over the course of his career, he appeared in over 150 film and television productions. His TV appearances include Father Knows Best, Leave It to Beaver, Maverick, The Andy Griffith Show, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Get Smart, All in the Family, The Brady Bunch, and Rhoda. He appeared in the films The Lusty Men, Cattle Queen of Montana, The Desperate Hours, The FBI Story, All Fall Down, Cat Ballou, Skin Game, and Mame.

1885–The first government-approved Japanese immigrants arrive in Hawaii.

1886–Actor, Charlie Ruggles, is born Charles Sherman Ruggles in Los Angeles, California. He was a comic actor who in a career spanning six decades, was cast in nearly 100 feature films. He appeared in the films Bringing Up Baby, The Farmer’s Daughter, A Stolen Life, Ramrod, The Parent Trap, Papa’s Delicate Condition, I’d Rather Be Rich, The Ugly Dachshund, and Follow Me, Boys!

1887–The Dawes Act authorized the President of the United States to survey Native American tribal land and divide it into individual allotments.

1888–Actress, Edith Evans, is born Edith Mary Evans in London, England. Evans became widely known for portraying haughty aristocratic women, but during her career she played every type of role: from a downtrodden maid and a deranged, impoverished old woman to the nurse in Romeo and Juliet (which she played in four productions between 1926 and 1961). She appeared in the films The Importance of Being Earnest, Look Back in Anger, The Nun’s Story, Tom Jones, The Chalk Garden, Young Cassidy, The Madwoman of Chaillot, and A Doll’s House.

1893–At Moulin Rouge in Paris, France, an artist's model named Mona decides to get an edge in a beauty contest judged by art students, when she disrobes to music while walking up and down the stage. She is arrested and fined 100 francs. The students riot over her arrest.

1894–Film director, King (Wallis) Vidor, is born in Galveston, Texas. He was nominated five times for a Best Director Oscar, and won eight international film awards during his career, which spanned almost 70 years. A visionary of his time, he wanted to shoot a tree in the location where the story was set; a budget-minded producer told him, “A rock is a rock, a tree is a tree. Shoot it in Griffith Park.” His films include Hallelujah!, The Champ, Stella Dallas, Northwest Passage, A Duel in the Sun, The Fountainhead, Lightning Strikes Twice, Ruby Gentry, and War and Peace.

1897–Politician, Zakir Hussain, is born in Hyderabad, Hyderabad State, (present-day Telangana, India). He was the third President of India. He was the first Indian President to die in office.

1898–John Ames Sherman patents the first envelope folding and gumming machine.

1902–Actor, Lyle Talbot, is born Lisle Henderson in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is best known for the role of Joe Randolph on the sitcom The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. He appeared in the films Three on a Match, The Life of Jimmy Dolan, Mandalay, Appointment with Murder, Glen or Glenda?, and Plan 9 from Outer Space. Child actor, Stephen Talbot, who had a recurring role on Leave It to Beaver, is his son.

1903–Politician, Tunku Abdul Rahman, is born in Alor Star, Kedah, British Malaya (present-day Malaysia). He was the first Prime Minister of Malaysia. Commonly known simply as "Tunku" or "The Tunku" (a Malay royal title), he is widely regarded, even by his critics, as Malaysia's founding father, the architect of Malayan independence and the formation of Malaysia.

1904–A surprise torpedo attack by the Japanese at Port Arthur, China, starts the Russo-Japanese War.

1904–Dutch Colonial Army's Marechaussee regiment, led by General G.C.E. van Daalen, launch a military campaign to capture Gayo Highland, Alas Highland, and Batak Highland in Dutch East Indies' Northern Sumatra region, which ends with genocide to Acehnese and Bataks people.

1905–A cyclone hits Tahiti’s nearby islands, killing over 10,000 people.

1910–Chicago businessman, William D. Boyce, incorporates the Boy Scouts of America. However, the Boy Scouts were originated by Englishman, Sir Robert S.S. Baden-Powell. Mr. Boyce was visiting England, and one day in London, he lost his way. A young boy guided him, but refused any monetary reward. A surprised Mr. Boyce queried as to why. The boy explained that he was a Boy Scout and they did not accept a reward for doing a good turn. Boyce searched out Baden-Powell to learn more about the British Scouts and formed the American version of the organization when he returned home.

1913–Actress, Betty Field, is born in Boston, Massachusetts. She appeared in the films Of Mice and Men, Seventeen, Victory, Blues in the Night, Kings Row, The Southerner, The Great Gatsby, Picnic, Bus Stop, Peyton Place, Houng-Dog Man, BUtterfield 8, Birdman of Alcatraz, 7 Women, How to Save a Marriage and Ruin Your Life, and Coogan's Bluff.

1915–D.W. Griffith's controversial film, The Birth of a Nation, premieres in Los Angeles, California.

1918–The Stars & Stripes, a weekly U.S. Armed Forces newspaper begins publication.

1921–Entertainer, George Formby, dies of pulmonary tuberculosis after years of illness at his home in Warrington, England, at age 49. He was an English comedian and singer in musical theatre, known as one of the greatest music hall performers of the early 20th century.

1921–Actress, Lana Turner, is born Julia Jean Turner in Wallace, Idaho. Legend goes that Turner was discovered on a stool at Schwabb’s Drug Store on Sunset Boulevard in the heart of Hollywood. She became known early in her career as “The Sweater Girl.” She appeared in the films Love Finds Andy Hardy, Ziegfeld Girl, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Johnny Eager, Du Barry Was a Lady, The Postman Always Rings Twice, Green Dolphin Street, The Bad and the Beautiful, Peyton Place, Imitation of Life, Portrait in Black, Bachelor in Paradise, Madame X, and The Big Cube. Turner was married eight times, her most famous husband being bandleader, Artie Shaw.

1922–President Warren G. Harding is the first president to have a radio in the White House.

1922–Actress, Audrey Meadows, is born Audrey Cotter in New York, New York. She is best known for the role of Alice Kramden in the comedy series The Honeymooners. She also was cast in the TV shows Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Wagon Train, Love American Style, The Love Boat, Starsky & Hutch, Life with Lucy, and Sisters. She appeared in the films That Touch of Mink, Take Her She’s Mine, Clown Alley, and Rosie! She is the younger sister of actress, Jayne Meadows.

1924–The gas chamber at the Nevada State Prison in Carson City is used for the first state execution in the U.S.

1925–Actor, Jack Lemmon, is born John Uhler Lemmon III in Newton, Massachusetts. He starred in more than 60 films during his lengthy and extremely successful career. He could play comedy and drama equally well and with ease. He appeared in the films It Should Happen to You, Mister Roberts, Bell, Book and Candle, Some Like It Hot, The Apartment, Days of Wine and Roses, Irma la Douce, Under the Yum Yum Tree, The Odd Couple, The Out-of-Towners, Save the Tiger, The China Syndrome, Glengarry Glen Ross, and Grumpy Old Men. He was married to actress, Felicia Farr. His son is actor, Chris Lemmon.

1926–Walt Disney Studios is established.

1926–Beat Generation poet, Neal (Leon) Cassady, is born in Salt Lake City, Utah. Although he never published anything in his lifetime, he wrote hundreds of letters, some over 20,000 words long, to friends like Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Ken Kesey, and William S. Burroughs. Kerouac used him as the model for the character Dean Moriarty in his classic book On the Road. After his death in 1968, three volumes of his letters were published.

1928–Actor, Jack (Edward) Larson, is born in Los Angeles, California. He is best known for the role of Jimmy Olsen on the TV series The Adventures of Superman. Due to typecasting, he did little acting after the show ended in 1958. He appeared in the films Fighter Squadron, Belles on Their Toes, Three Sailors and a Girl, About Mrs. Leslie, and The Young Swingers.

1930–Actor, Alejandro Rey, is born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He is best known for the role of the handsome playboy, Carlos Ramirez, on the TV sitcom The Flying Nun. He became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1967, while appearing on the series. He appeared in the films Fun in Acapulco, Synanon, The Swarm, and Moscow on the Hudson.

1931–Actor, James (Byron) Dean, is born in Marion, Indiana. Dean's enduring fame and iconic popularity rest on his performances in only three films, all leading roles: East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause, and Giant. However, he appeared briefly in several earlier films that were uncredited: Fixed Bayonets!, Sailor Beware, Has Anybody Seen My Gal?, and Trouble Along the Way. Prior to his film work, he appeared in dramatic roles on dozens of TV programs, including CBS Television Workshop, Hallmark Hall of Fame, Tales of Tomorrow, Armstrong Circle Theatre, and The United States Steel Hour. Considering that James Dean's movie career only spanned 18 months, it's remarkable that he still enjoys such legendary status, over 50 years after his death, remaining one of cinema's most enigmatic stars.

1932–John (Towner) Williams, pianist, composer, and conductor, is born in Floral Park, New York. In a career spanning over six decades, Williams has composed some of the most popular and recognizable film scores in cinematic history, including Jaws, the "Star Wars" series, Superman, the "Indiana Jones" series, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Jurassic Park, and the first three "Harry Potter" films. In 2005, the American Film Institute selected Williams' score for 1977's Star Wars as the greatest American film score of all time. Williams has won five Academy Awards, four Golden Globe Awards, seven British Academy Film Awards, and 22 Grammy Awards.

1933–Actor, Jack (Edward) Larson, is born in Los Angeles, California. He is best known for the role of cub reporter, Jimmy Olsen, on the TV series The Adventures of Superman.

1940–News anchorman, Ted Koppel, is born Edward James Martin Koppel in Nelson, Lancashire, England. He is best known as the anchor for the late night news program, Nightline, from 1980 until his retirement in 2005.

1940–Actor, Nick Nolte, is born Nicholas King Nolte in Omaha, Nebraska. Nolte first gained national attention for the role of Tom Jordache in Rich Man, Poor Man, a TV miniseries based on Irwin Shaw's best-selling novel. He has appeared in the films Return to Macon County, The Deep, Who’ll Stop the Rain, North Dallas Forty, Heart Beat, Cannery Row, 48 Hrs., Teachers, Weeds, Cape Fear, The Prince of Tides, Lorenzo’s Oil, Jefferson in Paris, Affliction, and U Turn.

1942–In World War II, Japan invades Singapore.

1942–Comedian, Robert Klein, is born in the Bronx, New York. He had a hit comedy album with A Child of the Fifties in 1973. Considered one of the more intellectual comedians of his day, he made many appearances on TV and had the first HBO comedy special in 1975. He appeared in They’re Playing Our Song on Broadway from 1979 to 1981. He has appeared in the films The Landlord, The Owl and the Pussycat, The Pursuit of Happiness, Radioland Murders, One Fine Day, Primary Colors, and Reign Over Me.

1942–Record producer, Terry Melcher, is born Terrence P. Jorden in New York, New York. In the early 1960s, Terry Melcher and Bruce Johnston (later of The Beach Boys) formed the vocal duet Bruce & Terry. By the mid-1960s, Melcher had joined the staff of Columbia Records, and for a time produced records for The Byrds. He also worked with Paul Revere & the Raiders, Wayne Newton, Frankie Laine, Pat Boone, Glen Campbell, and The Mamas & The Papas. He is the son of actress, Doris Day, and trombonist, Al Jorden. He was later adopted by Day’s third husband, movie producer, Martin Melcher.

1943–Creed Bratton, guitarist with The Grass Roots, is born William Charles Schneider in Sacramento, California. He also is known for playing a fictional version of himself on the TV series The Office.

1945–During World War II, the United Kingdom and Canada commence Operation Veritable to occupy the west bank of the Rhine.

1945–Mikhail Devyataev escapes (with nine other Soviet inmates) from a Nazi concentration camp in Peenemünde, on the island of Usedom, by hijacking the camp commandant's Heinkel He 111.

1946–The first portion of the Revised Standard Version of the Bible is published. It is the first serious challenge to the popularity of the Authorized King James Version.

1948–The formal creation of the Korean People's Army of North Korea is announced.

1948–The V Winter Olympic Games close at St Moritz, Switzerland.

1948–Singer, Dan Seals, is born Danny Wayland Seals in McCamey, Texas. The younger brother of Jim Seals, of Seals & Crofts, he gained fame in the soft rock duo, England Dan & John Ford Coley. They had a huge hit with I’d Really Love to See You Tonight.

1949–Cardinal Mindszenty of Hungary is sentenced for treason.

1950–The Stasi, secret police of East Germany, is established.

1950–Model-actress, (Cynthia) Cristina Ferrare, is born in Cleveland, Ohio. She was a top model, featured as cover girl many times on a variety of fashion magazines during the 1970s. Ferrare was the spokesperson for Max Factor between the ages of 16 and 26. She went on to co-host daytime talk shows, such as AM Los Angeles, The Home Show, and The Home and Family Show. She was married to automobile designer, John DeLorean.

1952–Elizabeth II is proclaimed Queen of the United Kingdom.

1953–Actress, Mary (Nell) Steenburgen, is born in Newport, Arkansas. Steenburgen's big break came in 1978, when she was discovered by actor, Jack Nicholson, and cast as the female lead in the Western, Goin' South. She also appeared in the films Time After Time, Melvin and Howard, Cross Creek, Romantic Comedy, Dead of Winter, The Whales of August, Parenthood, Back to the Future Part III, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?, Philadelphia, Powder, Life as a House, I Am Sam, and Did You Hear About the Morgans? She was married to actors Malcolm McDowell and Ted Danson.

1955–The Government of Sindh, Pakistan, abolishes the Jagirdari system in the province. One million acres of land that had been acquired will now be distributed among the landless peasants.

1955–Author, John Grisham, is born John Ray Grisham, Jr. in Jonesboro, Arkansas. He is an American lawyer and politician, best known for his popular legal thrillers, many of which have made it to the big screen. His books include A Time to Kill, The Firm, The Pelican Brief, The Client, The Rainmaker, and The Runaway Jury.

1956–Baseball manager, Connie Mack, dies of old age and complications from hip surgery in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at age 93. The longest-serving manager in Major League Baseball history, he holds records for wins (3,731), losses (3,948), and games managed (7,755).

1960–Queen Elizabeth II, of the United Kingdom, issues an Order-in-Council, stating that she and her family would be known as the “House of Windsor,” and that her descendants will take the name Mountbatten-Windsor.

1960–The first eight brass star plaques are installed in the Hollywood Walk of Fame. While Joanne Woodward is often singled out as the first to receive a star on the Walk of Fame, there actually was no "first" recipient: Woodward's name was one of eight drawn at random from the original 1,558 nominees. The other seven were Olive Borden, Ronald Colman, Louise Fazenda, Preston Foster, Burt Lancaster, Edward Sedgwick, and Ernest Torrence.

1960–Architect, Giles Gilbert Scott, dies of lung cancer in London, England, at age 79. He designed the classic red telephone box: his was the chosen design and it was put into production in cast iron as the GPO's "Kiosk no. 2" or "K2." His other designs are the Cropthorne Court mansion, the Battersea Power Station, Waterloo Bridge, and Liverpool Cathedral.

1961–Rocker, Vince Neil, of Mötley Crüe, is born Vincent Neil Wharton in Hollywood, California.

1962–Nine trade unionists are killed by French police at the instigation of Nazi collaborator, Maurice Papon, then chief of the Paris Prefecture of Police.

1963–Travel, financial, and commercial transactions by American citizens to Cuba are made illegal by President John F. Kennedy’s administration.

1963–The regime of the Prime Minister of Iraq, Brigadier General Abdul-Karim Qassem, is overthrown by the Ba'ath Party.

1963–The first full color, publicly advertised television program in the world, is broadcast by XHGC-TV, Channel 5, in Mexico City, Mexico. It was due to technical breakthroughs made by Mexican engineer, Guillermo González Camarena.

1963–Actor, George Dolenz, dies of a heart attack in Hollywood, California, at age 55. He appeared in the films Moonlight in Vermont, The Last Time I Saw Paris, and Timbuktu.

1964–Max Firetag, publisher of Louie Louie, as recorded by The Kingsmen for Wand Records, denies Indiana Governor Matthew Welsh's claim that the song is "pornographic." Firetag offers $1,000 to anyone who can find anything "suggestive" in the song's lyrics.

1964–The Beatles rehearse for their first live appearance on American television, on The Ed Sullivan Show. The rehearsal is at Studio 50, Broadway and West 53rd Street, New York, New York.

1965–Eastern Air Lines Flight 663 crashes into the Atlantic Ocean and explodes, killing everyone aboard.

1965–The Dave Clark Five begin filming their movie, Catch Us If You Can (aka Having a Wild Weekend).

1965–The 22nd Annual Golden Globe Awards announces its winners. Best Picture: Becket; Best Actor: Peter O'Toole for Becket; Best Actress: Anne Bancroft for The Pumpkin Eater; Best Director: George Cukor for My Fair Lady; Best Musical: My Fair Lady.

1968–An attack on black students from South Carolina State University who are protesting racial segregation at the town's only bowling alley, leaves three or four dead in Orangeburg, South Carolina.

1968–Child actor, Gary (Wayne) Coleman, is born in Zion, llinois. He is be known for the role of Arnold Jackson in the TV sitcom Diff'rent Strokes. His short stature (4 feet, 7 inches, as an adult) stemmed from congenital autoimmune kidney disease and its treatment.

1969–A meteorite weighing over one ton falls in Chihuahua, Mexico.

1969–Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker, and Stevie Winwood announce they are forming a new group. Upon finding bass player, Rich Grech, the quartet becomes Blind Faith.

1969–Janis Joplin's manager, Albert Grossman, sends her and the Kozmic Blues Band to Rindge, New Hampshire, to spend some time rehearsing.

1969–Actress, Mary (Catherine) McCormack, is born in Plainfield, New Jersey. She is known for the roles of Justine Appleton in the series Murder One, as Deputy National Security Adviser, Kate Harper, in The West Wing, and as Mary Shannon in In Plain Sight. She has appeared in the films Private Parts, Deep Impact, Mystery, Alaska, K-PAX, Full Frontal, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star, and For Your Consideration.

1971–South Vietnamese ground troops launch an incursion into Laos to try to cut off the Ho Chi Minh trail and stop communist infiltration.

1971–The NASDAQ stock market index makes its debut.

1971–Bob Dylan's bizarre hour-long documentary film, Eat the Document, is screened at New York's Academy of Music. Much of the footage is from Dylan's 1966 U.K. tour. Proceeds from the premiere go toward ending strip mining in Pike County, Kentucky. The film is only given two other commercial showings.

1972–Paul and Linda McCartney, the band (Wings), wives, girlfriends, children, and even pets, climb into a caravan and head onto the motorway, stopping at whichever university town takes their fancy; their musical instruments, along with two roadies, follow in a van. This day’s stop was at Nottingham University. Paul sends in an assistant to ask if they can put on a show for the students the following day. Once agreed, word is spread throughout the campus and posters are put up announcing the show.

1973–U.S. Senate leaders name seven members of a select committee to investigate the Watergate scandal.

1973–Max Yasgur dies of a heart attack in Marathon, Florida, at age 53. He was the farmer whose land near Bethel, New York, was used for the Woodstock festival in 1969. Many of his neighbors turned against him after Woodstock, and he was no longer welcome at the town general store, but he said he never regretted his decision to allow the concert on his farm. He was given a full-page obituary in Rolling Stone magazine, one of the few non-musicians to receive such an honor.

1974–After 84 days in space, the crew of the first American space station, Skylab, returns to Earth.

1974–Martial artist and boxer, Kimbo Slice, is born Kevin Ferguson in Nassau, Bahamas. He became known for mutual combat street fights that were spread across the Internet, leading Rolling Stone to call him "The King of the Web Brawlers."

1975–The unauthorized John Lennon LP, John Lennon Sings the Great Rock & Roll Hits: Roots, is sold via television mail order in the U.S. The album was pressed using an incomplete advance master tape of Lennon's Rock 'n' Roll album tracks (Lennon's album had not yet been released). Lennon's successful lawsuit will force Roots off the market, and his Rock 'n' Roll LP will be released on February 17th. Lennon later said that he ordered one of the Roots albums off TV and had to wait three weeks for its delivery. This was most likely because of its scarcity: there were only 2,500 copies of the LP and 500 copies of the 8-track tape produced.

1978–The proceedings of the U.S. Senate are broadcast on radio for the first time.

1979–Dennis Gabor, inventor of holography (3D laser photography), dies in a nursing home in South Kensington, London, England, at age 78. He received the 1971 Nobel Prize in Physics for his invention.

1980–David Bowie and his wife, Angela, are divorced after nearly a decade of marriage, with custody of son, Zowie, going to David. Since Bowie’s real name is David Jones, his son’s name would technically be Zowie Jones, instead of Zowie Bowie.

1981–Twenty-one association football spectators are trampled to death at Karaiskakis Stadium in Neo Faliro, Greece, after a football match between Olympiacos F.C. and AEK Athens F.C.

1982–Cher makes her Broadway debut in Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean.

1983–The Melbourne dust storm hits Australia's second largest city. The result of the worst drought on record and a day of severe weather conditions, a 1,050-foot-deep dust cloud envelops the city, turning day to night.

1984–The XIV Winter Olympic Games open in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia.

1985–Businessman, William Lyons, dies in Warwickshire, England, at age 83. With fellow motorcycle enthusiast, William Walmsley, he was the co-founder of the Swallow Sidecar Company in 1922, which became Jaguar Cars Limited after World War II.

1986–Twenty-three people are killed when a VIA Rail passenger train collides with a 118-car Canadian National freight train near the town of Hinton, Alberta, west of Edmonton, Canada.

1989–A winter storm over California produces snow from the beaches of Malibu to the desert canyons around Palm Springs. The storm caused mammoth traffic jams in the Los Angeles Basin.

1989–Independent Air Flight 1851 strikes Pico Alto mountain while on approach to Santa Maria Airport (Azores), killing all 144 passengers on board.

1990–Singer, Del Shannon, dies from suicide by a gunshot wound in Santa Clara, California, at age 55. He had been suffering from depression and was taking the anti-depressant drug Prozac. He is best known for his #1 hit Runaway. His other hits include Hats Off to Larry, Little town Flirt, and Handy Man.

1992–The XVI Winter Olympic Games open in Albertville, France.

1993–General Motors sues NBC after Dateline NBC allegedly rigs two crashes intended to demonstrate that some GM pickups can easily catch fire if hit in certain places. NBC settles the lawsuit the next day.

1993–Financial columnist, Eliot Janeway, dies from heart trouble in New York, New York, at age 80.

1994–Tommy Lee, of Mötley Crüe, is charged with possession of a loaded firearm.

1996–The U.S. Congress passes the Communications Decency Act.

1996–The massive Internet collaboration "24 Hours in Cyberspace" takes place. The project brought together the world's top photographers, editors, programmers, and interactive designers to create a digital time capsule of online life. The website received more than 4 million hits in the 24 hours that the project was active.

1999–Novelist and philosopher, Iris Murdoch, dies from Alzheimer's disease in Oxfordshire, England, at age 79. Her first published novel, Under the Net, was selected in 1998 as one of Modern Library's 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. Her other books include The Bell, A Severed Head, The Red and the Green, The Nice and the Good, The Black Prince, Henry and Cato, The Sea the Sea, The Philosopher's Pupil, The Good Apprentice, The Book and the Brotherhood, The Message to the Planet, and The Green Knight.

2001–Disney’s California Adventure opens. It is a 55-acre theme park built next to Disneyland, in Anaheim, California. At a reported cost of $1.4 billion, the park has three theme areas: Paradise Pier, Hollywood Pictures Backlot, and Golden State (with five areas: San Francisco, Bountiful Valley Farm, Redwood Creek, Condor Flats, and Pacific Wharf).

2002–The XIX Winter Olympic Games open in Salt Lake City, Utah.

2004–The 46th Annual Grammy Awards announces its winners. Record of the Year: Coldplay for Clocks; Album of the Year: OutKast for Speakerboxxx/The Love Below; Song of the Year: Luther Vandross for Dance with My Father; Best Vocal Performance, Male: Justin Timberlake for Cry Me a River; Best Vocal Performance, Female: Christina Aguilera for Beautiful; Best Performance by a Vocal Group: No Doubt for Underneath It All; Best Country & Western Performance: June Carter Cash for Keep on the Sunny Side; Best Rhythm & Blues Performance: Beyoncé for Dangerously in Love; Best Rock Performance: Pink for Trouble; Best Instrumental Performance: George Harrison for Marwa Blues; Best Rap Performance: Missy Elliott for Work It; Best New Artist: Evanescence. The ceremonies are held at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. There is no host. The show also featured a tribute to The Beatles in honor of the 40-year anniversary of their arrival in America and their appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison made an on-stage appearance.

2005–Jazz organist, Jimmy Smith, dies in his sleep of natural causes in Scottsdale, Arizona, at age 79. Smith helped popularize the Hammond B3 electric organ, creating an indelible link between 1960s soul and jazz improvisation. His albums include The Sermon!, House Party, Home Cookin', Midnight Special, Back at the Chicken Shack, and Prayer Meetin'.

2006–The 48th Annual Grammy Awards announces its winners. Record of the Year: Green Day for Boulevard of Broken Dreams; Album of the Year: U2 for How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb; Song of the Year: Bono (songwriter) for Sometimes You Can't Make It on Your Own; Best Vocal Performance, Male: Stevie Wonder for From the Bottom of My Heart; Best Vocal Performance, Female: Kelly Clarkson for Since U Been Gone; Best Performance by a Vocal Group: Maroon 5 for This Love; Best Country & Western Performance: Emmylou Harris for The Connection; Best Rhythm & Blues Performance: Mariah Carey for We Belong Together; Best Rock Performance: Bruce Springsteen for Devils & Dust; Best Instrumental Performance: Les Paul for Caravan; Best Rap Performance: Kanye West for Gold Digger; Best New Artist: John Legend. The ceremonies are held at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. There is no host.

2007–Television personality, Anna Nicole Smith, dies of an overdose of prescription drugs in Hollywood, Florida, at age 39.

2009–The 51st Annual Grammy Awards announces its winners. Record of the Year: Robert Plant and Alison Krauss for Please Read the Letter; Album of the Year: Robert Plant and Alison Krauss for Raising Sand; Song of the Year: Coldplay for Vida la Vida; Best Vocal Performance, Male: John Mayer for Say; Best Vocal Performance, Female: Adele for Chasing Pavements; Best Performance by a Vocal Group: Coldplay for Vida la Vida; Best Country & Western Performance: Carrie Underwood for Last Name; Best Rhythm & Blues Performance: Alicia Keys for Superwoman; Best Rock Performance: John Mayer for Gravity; Best Instrumental Performance: The Eagles for I Dreamed There Was No War; Best Rap Performance: Lil Wayne for A Milli; Best New Artist: Adele. The ceremonies are held at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. There is no host.

2010–A freak storm in the Hindukush mountains of Afghanistan triggers a series of at least 36 avalanches, burying over two miles of road, killing at least 172 people and trapping over 2,000 travelers.

2010–Michael Jackson's personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray, pleads not guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the death of the pop superstar in Los Angeles Superior Court.

2013–A blizzard disrupts transportation and leaves hundreds of thousands of people without electricity in the Northeastern U.S. and parts of Canada.

2014–A hotel fire in Medina, Saudi Arabia, kills 15 Egyptian pilgrims and leaves 130 injured.

2015–The 57th Annual Grammy Awards announces its winners. Record of the Year: Sam Smith for Stay with Me; Album of the Year: Beck for Morning Phase; Song of the Year: Sam Smith for Stay with Me; Best Vocal Performance: Pharrell Williams for Happy (Live); Best Performance by a Vocal Group: A Great Big World and Christina Aguilera for Say Something; Best Country & Western Performance: Carrie Underwood for Something in the Water; Best Rhythm & Blues Performance: Beyoncé featuring Jay Z for Drunk in Love; Best Rock Performance: Jack White for Lazaretto; Best Instrumental Performance: John Williams for The Book Thief; Best Rap Performance: Kendrick Lamar for I; Best New Artist: Sam Smith. The ceremonies are held at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The host is LL Cool J. Lifetime Achievement awards are given to The Bee Gees, George Harrison, Pierre Boulez, Buddy Guy, and Flaco Jiménez.

2016–New refugee camps go up near the Syria-Turkey border, after Turkey blocks thousands of refugees from entering the country.

2016–At least 27 migrants die in a shipwreck in the Aegean Sea, when a boat capsizes in the Turkish bay of Edremit, near the Greek island of Lesbos.

2016–According to media reports, radioactive material has leaked at alarming levels into the groundwater below the Indian Point nuclear power plant in Buchanan, New York, about 40 miles north of Manhattan.

2016–DotGovs, a hacker group that released data on almost 10,000 Department of Homeland Security employees on February 7th, publishes contact information for 20,000 FBI employees.

2017–The Turkish government dismisses more than 4,400 public servants from their jobs in the latest purge within the country, following a failed coup attempt last year.

2018–Bermuda repeals same-sex marriage, becoming the world's first jurisdiction to legalise, then repeal the law. About half a dozen same-sex marriages that took place in Bermuda between the Supreme Court ruling in May 2017 and the repeal will continue to be recognized.

PHOTOS TOP TO BOTTOM: Proclus; Mary, Queen of Scots; Jules Verne; Martin Buber; Charlie Ruggles; King Vidor; Lana Turner; Jack Lemmon; James Dean; Nick Nolte; Terry Melcher; Cristina Ferrare on Harper's Bazaar magazine; Connie Mack; the British phone booth; Having a Wild Weekend poster; Paul McCartney and Wings 1972; the John Lennon Roots album; Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean poster; Del Shannon; Jimmy Smith; Adele; and Pharrell Williams.

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