1802 - John Beckley became the first Librarian of Congress and was paid two dollars an hour.
1845 - Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” was published for the first time in the “New York Evening Mirror.”
1850 - Henry Clay introduced in the Senate a compromise bill on slavery that included the admission of California into the Union as a free state.
1861 - In America, Kansas became the 34th state of the Union.
1886 - The first successful petrol-driven motorcar, built by Karl Benz, was patented.
1916 - In World War I, Paris was bombed by German zeppelins for the first time.
1924 - R. Taylor patented the ice cream cone rolling machine.
1926 - Violette Neatley Anderson became the first African-American woman admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court.
1929 - The first seeing-eye Dog Guide School in the United States received their charter. Seeing Eye, Inc., was founded in Morris Township, New Jersey, by Dorothy Harrison Eustus. In February Morris Frank and Jack Humphrey began operating the 1st Seeing Eye school in the US in Nashville, Tenn. Frank had trained under Humphrey in Switzerland at a kennel owned by Dorothy Eustis. Buddy was Frank’s 1st dog and in 1936 became the 1st seeing-eye dog to ride as a passenger on an American commercial airline.
1936 - The first members of major league baseball’s Hall of Fame: Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson & Walter Johnson were named in Cooperstown, NY.
1940 - The W. Atlee Burpee Seed Company displayed the first tetraploid flowers at the New York City Flower Show.
1956 - “Indictment” debuted on CBS radio and stayed on the air for three years.
1959 - Walt Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty” was released.
1963 - The first members to the NFL’s Hall of Fame were named in Canton, OH.
1979 - U.S. President Carter formally welcomed Chinese Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping to the White House. The visit followed the establishment of diplomatic relations.
1987 - “Physician’s Weekly” announced that the smile on the face of Leonardo DeVinci’s Mona Lisa was caused by a “…facial paralysis resulting from a swollen nerve behind the ear.”
1990 - Joseph Hazelwood, the former skipper of the Exxon Valdez, went on trial in Anchorage, AK, on charges that stemmed from America’s worst oil spill. Hazelwood was later acquitted of all the major charges and was convicted of a misdemeanor.
1995 - The San Francisco 49ers became the first team in National Football League (NFL) history to win five Super Bowl titles. The 49ers defeated the San Diego Chargers 49-26.
1996 - Garth Brooks refused to accept his American Music Award for Favorite Overall Artist. Brooks said that Hootie and the Blowfish had done more for music that year than he did.
1996 - French President Jacques Chirac announced the “definitive end” to nuclear testing.
1997 - America Online agreed to give refunds to frustrated customers under threat of lawsuits across the country. Customers were unable to log on after AOL offered a flat $19.95-a-month rate.
1999 - Paris prosecutors announced the end of the investigation into the accident that killed Britain’s Princess Diana.
1999 - The U.S. Senate delivered subpoenas for Monica Lewinsky and two presidential advisers for private, videotaped testimony in the impeachment trial.
2001 - In Indonesia, thousands of student protesters stormed the parliament property and demanded that President Abdurrahman Wahid quit due to his alleged involvement in two corruption scandals. Wahid announced that he would not resign.
2003 - The Congressional Budget Office predicted the current year’s federal deficit would soar to $199 billion even without President Bush’s new tax cut plan or war against Iraq.
2007 - Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro was euthanized because of medical complications eight months after his gruesome breakdown at the Preakness.