1740 - Maria Theresa takes the throne of Austria. France, Prussia, Bavaria and Saxony refuse to honour the Pragmatic Sanction and the War of the Austrian Succession begins.
1781 - Patent of Toleration, providing limited freedom of worship, is approved in Habsburg Monarchy.
1803 - The United States Senate ratifies the Louisiana Purchase.
1818 - The Convention of 1818 signed between the United States and the United Kingdom which, among other things, settled the Canada – United States border on the 49th parallel for most of its length.
1827 - Battle of Navarino – a combined Turkish and Egyptian armada is destroyed by an allied British, French, and Russian naval force in the port of Navarino in Pylos, Greece. The most important result of this battle is the end of the Greek Liberation War and the affirmation of independence of modern Greece.
1883 - Peru and Chile signed the Treaty of Ancón, by which the Tarapacá province is ceded to the latter, bringing an end to Peru's involvement in the War of the Pacific.
1910 - The hull of the RMS Olympic, sister-ship to the ill-fated RMS Titanic, is launched from the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
1935 - The Long March ends
1941 - World War II: Thousands of civilians in Kragujevac in German-occupied Serbia are killed in the Kragujevac massacre.
1944 - The Soviet Army and Yugoslav Partisans liberate Belgrade, the capital of Yugoslavia
1944 - Liquid natural gas leaks from storage tanks in Cleveland, then explodes; the explosion and resulting fire level 30 blocks and kill 130.
1944 - General Douglas MacArthur fulfills his promise to return to the Philippines when he commands an Allied assault on the islands, reclaiming them from the Japanese during the Second World War.
1947 - The House Un-American Activities Committee begins its investigation into Communist infiltration of Hollywood, resulting in a blacklist that prevents some from working in the industry for years.
1951 - The "Johnny Bright Incident" occurred in Stillwater, Oklahoma
1952 - Governor Evelyn Baring declared a state of emergency in Kenya and began arresting hundreds of suspected leaders of the Mau Mau Uprising, including Jomo Kenyatta, the future first President of Kenya.
1967 - A purported bigfoot is filmed by Patterson and Gimlin.
1968 - Former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy marries Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis.
1970 - Siad Barre declares Somalia a socialist state.
1971 - The Nepal Stock Exchange collapses.
1973 - Saturday Night Massacre: President Richard Nixon fires U.S. Attorney General Elliot Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus after they refuse to fire Watergate special prosecutor Archibald Cox, who is finally fired by Robert Bork.
1973 - The Sydney Opera House opens.
1976 - The ferry George Prince is struck by a ship while crossing the Mississippi River between Destrehan and Luling, Louisiana. Seventy-eight passengers and crew died; only 18 people aboard the ferry survived.
1977 - A plane carrying Lynyrd Skynyrd crashes in Mississippi, killing lead singer Ronnie Van Zant and guitarist Steve Gaines along with backup singer Cassie Gaines, the road manager, pilot, and co-pilot.
1979 - The John F Kennedy library is opened in Boston, Massachusetts.
1982 - During the UEFA Cup match between FC Spartak Moscow and HFC Haarlem, 66 people are crushed to death in the Luzhniki disaster.
1984 - The Monterey Bay Aquarium opens in Monterey Bay, California.
1991 - The Oakland Hills firestorm kills 25 and destroys 3,469 homes and apartments, causing more than $2 billion in damage.