1492 – Christopher Columbus set sail from Palos, Spain, with three ships, Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria seeking a westerly route to the Far East.
1790 – The first U.S. census was completed with a total population of 3,929,214. 1892 – Charles A. Wheeler patented the first escalator.
1899 – The refrigerator was patented by A.T. Marshall.
1914 – The first electric traffic signal lights were installed in Cleveland, Ohio.
1920 – The 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, granting women the right to vote.
1935 – President Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act.
1944 – Anne Frank penned her last entry into her diary.
1945 – V-J Day, commemorating President Truman’s announcement that Japan had surrendered to the Allies.
1959 – President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a proclamation admitting Hawaii to the Union as the 50th state.
1962 – Apartheid opponent Nelson Mandela was arrested by security police in South Africa.
1966 – Michael DeBakey became the first surgeon to install an artificial heart pump in a patient.
1969 – Woodstock began in a field near Yasgur’s Farm at Bethel, New York.
1997 – Britain’s Princess Diana died at age 36.
1998 – “Titanic” became the first movie in North America to earn more than $600 million.