1704 – The first regular newspaper in British Colonial America, The Boston News-Letter, is published.
1779 – Eleazar Wheelock, American minister and academic, founded Dartmouth College (b. 1711) dies.
1800 – The United States Library of Congress is established when President John Adams signs legislation to appropriate $5,000 to purchase "such books as may be necessary for the use of Congress".
1880 – Gideon Sundback, Swedish-American engineer and businessman, developed the zipper (d. 1954) is born.
1885 – American sharpshooter Annie Oakley is hired by Nate Salsbury to be a part of Buffalo Bill's Wild West.
1895 – Joshua Slocum, the first person to sail single-handedly around the world, sets sail from Boston, Massachusetts aboard the sloop "Spray".
1913 – The Woolworth Building, a skyscraper in New York City, is opened.
1934 – Shirley MacLaine, American actress, singer, and dancer is born.
1942 – Barbra Streisand, American singer, actress, and producer is born.
1953 – Winston Churchill is knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.
1957 – Suez Crisis: The Suez Canal is reopened following the introduction of UNEF peacekeepers to the region.
1967 – Cosmonaut Vladimir Komarov dies in Soyuz 1 when its parachute fails to open. He is the first human to die during a space mission.
1967 – Vietnam War: American General William Westmoreland says in a news conference that the enemy had "gained support in the United States that gives him hope that he can win politically that which he cannot win militarily."
1974 – Bud Abbott, American comedian and producer (b. 1895) dies.
1980 – Eight U.S. servicemen die in Operation Eagle Claw as they attempt to end the Iran hostage crisis.
1990 – STS-31: The Hubble Space Telescope is launched from the Space Shuttle Discovery.
1996 – In the United States, the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 is passed into law.
1997 – Eugene Stoner, American engineer, designed the AR-15 rifle (b. 1922) dies.
2004 – Estée Lauder, American businesswoman, co-founded Estée Lauder Companies (b. 1906) dies.
2004 – The United States lifts economic sanctions imposed on Libya 18 years previously, as a reward for its cooperation in eliminating weapons of mass destruction.
2005 – Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger is inaugurated as the 265th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church taking the name Pope Benedict XVI.