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Every year - The Ann Arbor Hash Bash, Michigan, USA (except if April Fool's Day falls on a week day, in which case this event defaults to the first Saturday of the month).
1949 - The 26 counties of the Irish Free State become the Republic of Ireland.
1957 - BBC series Panorama fools the nation with its legendary Growing Spaghetti joke.
1996 - Delirious? the band and their record label, Furious? Records, were born.
1999 - 'Inukshuk', Nunavut is established as a part of land claim settlements.
2002 - The Netherlands legalises euthanasia, becoming the first nation in the world to do so.
1805 - Writer Hans Christian Andersen, famous for his fairy tales, is born in Odense, Denmark.
1874 - Two Native Americans find 'white man's flesh' outside an Agency building, thus starting the search for Alfred Packer - the Colorado Cannibal.
1902 - 'Electric Theatre', the first full-time cinema in the USA, opens in Los Angeles, California.
1908 - The HMS Tiger takes part in an ill-fated home fleet exercise 20 miles south of the Isle of Wight..
1916 - The Isle of Wight's seaplanes destroy a Zeppelin.
1928 - Serge Gainsbourg, French Singer and Songwriter, is born in Paris, France.
1930 - The first crossword appears in the weekly edition of The Times.
1939 - Marvin Gaye, the Prince of soul, is born in Washington DC to the Rev Marvin and Alberta Gay.
1961 - The trial of Adolf Eichmann begins in Jerusalem.
1970 - Phil Spector finishes work on the Beatles' album Let It Be. 34 years later, Paul McCartney removes Spector's contributions from the recordings and releases Let it Be... Naked.
1982 - Argentina invades The Falkland Islands.
1985 - The first male voice of the Speaking Clock is heard.
2006 - More than 60 tornadoes cause havoc in the USA. Hardest hit is Tennessee with 29 people killed.
1883 - The trial begins of Alfred Packer - the 'Colorado Cannibal' - for the murder of Israel Swan.
1895 - The trial of a libel case instigated by the playwright Oscar Wilde begins, eventually resulting in his imprisonment on charges of homosexuality.
1912 - Calbraith Perry Rogers is the first casualty from a bird strike, when he flews his Wright Flyer into a flock of seagulls during an air show in Long Beach and crashes into the sea.
1924 - Legendary actress and singer Doris Day is born in Cincinnati, Ohio.
1924 - Legendary actor Marlon Brando is born, as noted in the song 'We Didn't Start the Fire'.
1930 - Former German chancellor Helmut Kohl is born.
1994 - The American TV show Highlander first airs in the UK.
2007 - A French TGV on the LGV Est high-speed line sets an official world speed record for conventional trains.
Every year - It's the Feast day of Saint Isidore, the Patron Saint of the Internet.
1731 - The Countess of Cesena is found, her body reduced to ashes. Was this down to Spontaneous Human Combustion?
1721 - Sir Robert Walpole becomes the first prime minister of the UK, during the reign of King George I.
1841 - US President William Henry Harrison dies of pneumonia.
1923 - Baseball legend Babe Ruth hits the first home run in the history of the newly-opened Yankee Stadium.
1968 - The American black civil rights leader, Dr Martin Luther King, is assassinated.
1972 - President Nixon authorises massive bombing of the North Vietnamese troops invading South Vietnam, saying, in private, 'The B a s t a r d s have never been bombed like they're going to be bombed this time'.
1995 - Kenny Everett, anarchic DJ and pioneer of 'pirate radio', dies.
In a raid on a ranch owned by the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS Church) in Texas, USA, 401 children and 133 woman are taken into custody.
1799 - Income tax payments start, for anyone on a decent salary. Not exactly a Great Day in History.
1815 - People around the world learn the name 'Tambora' - the greatest volcanic eruption in recorded history.
1841 - William Henry Harrison, 9th US President, dies of a pneumonia he contracted during his inaugural speech 32 days earlier.
1904 - The first international rugby league match is played between England and an Other Nationalities team (Welsh and Scottish players) in Central Park, Wigan, England.
1951 - Julius and Ethel Rosenberg are sentenced to jail for conspiring to steal secrets about the atomic bomb - a historical moment documented in the song 'We Didn't Start the Fire'.
2008 - US actor Charlton Heston, star of the film Ben-Hur and president of the National Rifle Association, dies (born 1923).
1652 - The Dutch sailor Jan van Riebeeck establishes a re-supply camp at the Cape of Good Hope. It eventually becomes Cape Town, South Africa.
1937 - The Luigi Accame ploughs into Rocken End, off the Isle of Wight.
1960 - Sputnik 3 ceases sending back data, as noted in the song 'We Didn't Start the Fire'.
1971 - Operation Lam Son 719 ends, one stage of the US campaign in Vietnam.
1994 - Juvénal Habyarimana, President of Rwanda, and Cyprien Ntaryamira, Hutu President of neighbouring Burundi die in an air crash when their plane is hit by two missiles.
2004 - Niki Sullivan, US guitarist with Buddy Holly and The Crickets, dies (born 1937).
1827 - English chemist John Walker sells the first friction match.
1853 - Queen Victoria's son Leopold, Duke of Albany, is born.
1858 - In Lourdes, a young girl called Bernadette experiences what is later called 'The Miracle of the Candle'.
1949 - The musical South Pacific premieres on Broadway.
1961 - An injured Soviet air force pilot is hospitalised, kick-starting unsubstantiated rumours regarding the first manned space flight.
1968 - Racing driver Jim Clarke is killed in a crash at Hockenheim.
1983 - Astronauts Story Musgrave and Don Peterson perform the first space shuttle spacewalk.
1999 - The World Trade Organisation rules in favour of the USA in a long-running trade dispute with the European Union over bananas.
1749 - Charles Wesley - Preacher and Hymn-writer - marries Sarah Gwynne.
1818 - August Wilhelm von Hofmann, the German chemist whose work led to the establishment of the coal tar and dye-stuff industries, is born.
1820 - The Venus de Milo is discovered on the Aegean island of Melos.
1953 - Twelve passengers die and many are injured when a London Underground Central line train, heading eastbound to Epping, ploughs into a stationary train waiting in the tunnel between Stratford and Leyton.
1974 - Baseball legend Hank Aaron scores a historic home run at Atlanta Stadium.
1994 - Kurt Cobain, now-legendary frontman of melodic grunge outfit Nirvana, commits suicide.
2008 - Construction of the world's first building to integrate wind turbines is completed in Bahrain.
1483 - King Edward IV dies.
1626 - Sir Francis Bacon dies from pneumonia.
1744 - Grace Pett, wife of a fishmonger in Ipswich, ignites in an incident believed to prove the existence of Spontaneous Human Combustion.
1794 - Theobald Boehm, the German inventor of the modern flute, is born (d. 1881).
1806 - British Engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel is born in Portsmouth.
1879 - Milton S Hershey writes a revealing page in his autobiographical book...
1969 - Harvard students protest against the war in Vietnam.
2002 - In London, the funeral of Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, takes place at Westminster Abbey.
2005 - HRH Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, marries Camilla Parker Bowles at the Guildhall, Windsor's Town Hall.
1815 - A number of colossal explosions occur during the greatest volcanic eruption in recorded history - Tambora.
1912 - The Titanic sets sail from Southampton.
1964 - American Railroad workers unions call a country-wide strike. Just one of the problems encountered by Lyndon Baines Johnson - 36th President of the United States.
1970 - Four lads that shook the world - The Beatles split up.
1973 - Roberto Carlos, the Brazilian footballer, is born.
1471 - Henry VI surrenders to Edward IV, bringing the Second War of the Roses to an end.
1775 - Germany's last execution for witchcraft takes place.
1912 - The Titanic departs from Queenstown, Ireland, as its last photograph is taken before heading out across the Atlantic.
1968 - General Westmoreland is denied his request for more troops in the war in Vietnam.
1970 - Apollo 13 is launched.
1994 - Oasis - the band at the heart of 1990s 'Brit-pop' - release their debut single.
2000 - Historian David Irving is denounced as a Holocaust denier by Justice Gray.
2001 - Harry Secombe, the Welsh actor and comedian of Goon Show fame, dies (born 1921).
2007 - Following a fall in his home in Manhattan, American author Kurt Vonnegut dies aged 84.
1861 - The American Civil War begins when Confederate forces fire on Fort Sumter, Charleston harbour, South Carolina.
1874 - English footballer and cricketer William 'Fatty' Foulke is born in Darley, Shropshire.
1918 - The SS Luis is torpedoed off the coast of the Isle of Wight.
1927 - The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland officially came into being.
1961 - The Soviets launch the first human in space, Yuri Gagarin, in Vostok 1.
1989 - Sugar Ray Robinson dies.
2002 - A female Palestinian suicide bomber kills seven people and injures 104 (among them nine Arabs) at the Mahane Yehuda Market in Jerusalem.
Every year - If you suffer from Triskaidekaphobia, today will not be your favourite day of the month.
Every year - Songkran, the Water Festival, starts, signifying the end of the Thai year.
1640 - King Charles I summons the Short Parliament, which sat from this day until 5 May, 1640.
1742 - George Frideric Handel's oratorio Messiah has its world premiere in Dublin, Ireland.
1883 - Alfred Packer - the Colorado Cannibal - is found guilty of murder and sentenced to death.
1954 - Baseball legend Hank Aaron makes his first major league debut.
1959 - Dutch orchestral conductor Eduard van Beinum dies after having a heart attack.
1966 - Iraqi politician Abdul Salam Arif dies in a mysterious helicopter crash at the banks of the Shatt al-Arab river in South Iraq.
1970 - 'Houston, we have a problem...' Apollo 13 gets into difficulty.
2004 - UK television presenter Caron Keating dies (born 1962).
Every year - Songkran - the Water Festival - ends. In Thailand it's considered to be the day between the old year and the new year.
1471 - The battle of Barnet is fought as part of the Second War of the Roses.
1699 - Khalsa, the brotherhood of the Sikh religion, is born in northern India, in accordance with the Nanakshahi calendar.
1759 - Death of the great German baroque composer, George Frederic Handel.
1857 - Queen Victoria's daughter Beatrice is born.
1865 - American President Abraham Lincoln is shot.
1912 - The Titanic strikes an iceberg and begins to sink.
1912 - Father of modern journalism William T Stead dies, having been on board the Titanic.
1936 - Racing driver Jim Clarke is born.
1941 - Baseball legend Pete Rose is born.
1961 - Adolf Eichmann is sentenced to death for crimes against the Jewish people.
1976 - Morocco and Mauritania partition the Western Sahara.
2005 - The US Oregon Supreme Court nullifies marriage licences issued to gay couples a year earlier by Multnomah County.
Every year - Tax Freedom Day, the traditional deadline for which federal income taxes must be paid to Washington DC.
Every year - Songkran, the Water Festival, ends, signifying Thailand's New Year's Day.
1452 - Italian Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci is born (d. 1519).
1814 - Medora Leigh - thought to have been the incestuous lovechild of Lord Byron and Augusta - is born.
1865 - Abraham Lincoln dies after being shot the previous day.
1912 - In the early hours of the morning, the last section of the Titanic sinks beneath the surface of the water.
1947 - Baseball legend Jackie Robinson breaks down the race barrier in major league baseball.
1961 - B-26 planes bomb Cuban airfields by order of John Fitzgerald Kennedy - 35th President of the United States.
1972 - Hanoi and Haiphong Harbour are bombed by the United States during the Vietnam war.
1989 - 96 football fans are crushed to death in the Hillsborough Tragedy.
2000 - Baseball legend Cal Ripken Jnr makes his 3,000th career hit.
2001 - Joey Ramone, musician and singer with US punk rock band The Ramones, dies (born 1951).
Every year - Feast day of Saint Drogo, the Patron Saint of the really ugly.
1867 - Wilbur Wright is born. With his younger brother, Wright becomes one half of the most famous aviation duo in history.
1889 - The most famous comedy tramp of the movies, Charlie Chaplin, is born in London.
1918 - Spike Milligan, Irish comedian, is born (d. 2002).
1924 - The Presbytery of Phoenix of the Presbyterain Church meets in session - a stage in the Americanisation of the Pima Nation.
1935 - The public first hear the new 'swing' sound of Glenn Miller.
1939 - Most revered British female vocalist of the 1960s Dusty Springfield is born in London.
1972 - Apollo 16 is launched.
2003 - The Treaty of Accession is signed in Athens, admitting ten new member states to the European Union.
1492 - Christopher Columbus signs a deal with Spain to finance his travels.
1875 - The English Football League is formed - good news for Blackburn Rovers FC.
1924 - Carl Hayden receives a letter regarding a meeting in Tucson, just one stage in the Americanisation of the Pima Nation.
1940 - Singer/songwriter Billy Fury is born in Liverpool, UK.
1957 - Nick Hornby, the English author, is born.
1963 - Baseball legend Mickey Mantle hits the record-breaking 'tape measure' home run.
1970 - After a tense few days, Apollo 13 re-enters Earth's atmosphere and splashes down with its crew intact.
1998 - Linda McCartney, wife of Paul McCartney, Wings musician and animal rights campaigner, dies (born 1941).
1915 - During World War I, the French pilot Roland Garros is shot down and glides to a landing on the German side of enemy lines.
1955 - Albert Einstein, who developed the theory of relativity, dies in hospital aged 76.
1956 - Grace Kelly marries Prince Rainier of Monaco.
1994 - Former President of the United States Richard Nixon suffers a stroke.
2002 - Ethnologist Thor Heyerdahl dies.
1775 - The colonists sing Yankee Doodle as they drive the British back to Boston.
1824 - Lord Byron dies.
1865 - Abraham Lincoln's funeral takes place.
1934 - Child actor Shirley Temple debuts in US TV series Stand Up and Cheer.
1935 - Musician, Comedian and Actor Dudley Moore is born in Dagenham.
1946 - British actor Tim Curry, famous for his performance in the movie The Rocky Horror Picture Show, is born in the Cheshire village of Grapenhall.
1949 - 'Lawn Chair' Larry Walters is born.
1971 - A protest is staged across Lincoln Memorial Bridge by Vietnam veterans and mothers of dead soldiers.
1972 - The North Vietnamese army attack the city of An Loc.
1993 - The Waco siege ends tragically.
2005 - Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger is elected Pope Benedict XVI on the second day of the Papal conclave.
Every year - The last day of Aries, according to the horoscope.
Every year - Feast day of Saint Caedwalla, the Patron Saint of serial killers.
570 - Mohammed, founder of the Islam, is born in Mecca.
1941 - Baseball legend Pete Rose is sentenced to five months in jail, 1000 hour community service and a $500,000 fine.
1943 - Edie Sedgwick is born in the Cottage Hospital of Santa Barbara, as seventh of eight children.
1971 - About 200 veterans attend hearings on proposals to end the war in Vietnam.
1991 - Steve Marriott, the British singer/songwriter with the band The Small Faces, and later Humble Pie, dies (b. 1947).
2001 - China removes homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses.
Every year - The first day of Taurus, according to the horoscope..
1926 - Princess Elizabeth Alexandra Mary is born. She is better known by the title 'Queen Elizabeth II'.
1975 - President Thieu of North Vietnam resigns from office.
1995 - The TV series Father Ted is first broadcast.
2004 - Pilot Robert Morgan of the Memphis Belle falls over at Asheville Regional Airport and breaks his neck.
2007 - Princess Isabella of Denmark is born.
1313 - The Ship of Blessed Mary is wrecked off the coast of the Isle of Wight.
1429 - Sire de Rotslaer writes a letter describing several predictions made by 'Joan of Arc'.
1833 - Inventor of the first steam locomotive, Richard Trevithick, dies in extreme poverty.
1914 - Baseball legend Babe Ruth pitches his first game with the Baltimore Orioles.
1994 - Richard Nixon - 37th President of the United States - dies.
2002 - Reading's rising urinals are first, er, christened.
2006 - Some 243 people are injured in Nepal after security forces open fire on pro-democracy protesters opposed to King Gyanendra.
1564 - Birthdate of William Shakespeare. He would die on the same day 52 years later.
1616 - A Great Date in History - owing to the death on this day of both Shakespeare and Cervantes.
1891 - Composer Sergey Sergeyevich Prokofiev is born.
1954 - Baseball legend Hank Aaron hits his first major league home run.
1967 - Tenor Saxophonist John Coltrane makes his last recording.
1968 - Students protest against the Vietnam War at Columbia University.
1971 - The final day of the Operation Dewey Canyon III protest against the Vietnam War.
2003 - All schools in Beijing, China, are closed for two weeks because of the SARS virus.
1066 - Halley's Comet is sighted on this day above the Isle of Wight.
1494 - Explorer Christopher Columbus leaves the settlement on La Isabella on this day to search for what he thought was the Chinese mainland.
1816 - Lord Byron leaves England on self-imposed exile.
1907 - Alfred Packer - the 'Colorado Cannibal', dies on a ranch near Denver.
1942 - Singer and actress Barbra Streisand is born in Brooklyn, New York.
1971 - Half a million demonstrators arrive in Washington DC to protest against the War in Vietnam.
1993 - An IRA London Underground bomb detonates in Bishopsgate, destroying the Undergroud station and wrecking nearby buildings.
2007 - Iceland announces that Norway will shoulder the defence of Iceland during peacetime.
Some years - The latest date in April on which Easter Day can ever fall.
1557 - Scarborough Castle is seized by Thomas Stafford on this day.
1763 - John Wilkes publishes controversial comments in newssheet The North Briton - an event that planted some of the Seeds of the American Revolution.
1843 - Alice, one of Queen Victoria's Children, is born.
1873 - Birth of Félix d' Hérelle, joint discoverer of bacteriophages, the most numerous organisms in the Earth's biosphere.
1908 - HMS Gladiator shipwrecks off the Isle of Wight.
1915 - The Battle of Gallipoli, and the date on which ANZAC Day falls each year, commemorating those who died in the battle.
1918 - Ella Fitzgerald, peerless black American jazz and pop singer and the 'first lady of song', is born.
1935 - Band Leader Glenn Miller plays titles under his own name for the first time.
1989 - Tibet's 'Stolen Child', Gedhun Choekyi Nyima the 11th Panchen Lama, is born.
2007 - Boris Yeltsin's funeral is the first to be sanctioned by the Russian Orthodox Church for a head of state since the funeral of Emperor Alexander III in 1894.
1573 - Marie de Medici is born.
1848 - The surviving members of the Franklin Expedition to the Northwest Passage leave the safety of their ships for the final time...
1923 - Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon - later HM Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother - and Prince Albert are wed.
1926 - David Coleman, much-loved English TV sports commentator, was born. He was the first quizmaster of the BBC TV sports show, A Question of Sport, and the originator of Colemanballs.
1953 - Panmunjom peace talks began again - an event referred to in the lyrics of Billy Joel's 'We Didn't Start The Fire'.
1957 - Sir Patrick Moore begins presenting the monthly television series The Sky At Night which is going to make him, and his monocle, famous.
1986 - The Chernobyl Disaster takes place on this day.
2007 - Queen's Pier is officially closed by the Hong Kong government, after a bitter struggle by conservationists, to facilitate land reclamation in the Central district.
1822 - Ulysses S Grant, Union General and American President is born in Point Pleasant, Ohio.
1882 - Leopold, Duke of Albany - one of Queen Victoria's Children - marries Princess Helena of Prussia.
1896 - Baseball legend Rogers Hornsby is born.
1947 - Declared 'Babe Ruth Day' across the USA and Japan.
1956 - Rocky Marciano announces his retirement from boxing - an event referred to in the lyrics of Billy Joel's 'We Didn't Start the Fire'.
1958 - The doomed third Sputnik satellite is launched - an event referred to in the lyrics of Billy Joel's 'We Didn't Start The Fire'.
1967 - Bolivian President René Barrientos dies in an helicopter crash.
1972 - Apollo 16 splashes down.
1972 - Vietnam War peace talks resume in Paris.
1986 - The town of Pripyat, lying next door to the Chernobyl Power Station, is evacuated.
1993 - All of the Zambian naional football team die in an air crash, when their Zambian Air Force de Havilland Buffalo crashes near Libreville, Gabon, after an engine starts to burn.
2002 - Musician, Comedian and Actor Dudley Moore dies in his home in New Jersey.
2006 - Construction work begins on the Freedom Tower for the new World Trade Center in New York City.
1934 - Coventry City Football Club score their biggest ever victory.
1941 - 'Ole Betty' - the nickname for the oldest-surviving B-17 Flying Fortress aeroplane - begins her career.
1947 - Thor Heyerdahl sets out to sail across the Pacific to Polynesia.
1967 - Muhammad Ali is arrested for refusing army induction during the Vietnam War.
1975 - General Duong Van Minh becomes the new president of South Vietnam.
1999 - Douglas Adams launches h2g2 - an internet-based Guide to Life, the Universe and Everything inspired by his Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series. The site is unveiled on the BBC's science programme Tomorrow's World.
1483 - The Dukes of Gloucester and Buckingham meet Lord Rivers at Northampton: a brief peaceful moment of The House of York during the Wars of the Roses.
1950 - Three adults are injured and a baby dies in a London rail disaster at Boarer's Manor Way Level Crossing, when a train hits a lorry occupying the tracks, due to poor visibility that day.
1975 - The North Vietnamese army shell the Tan Son Nhut air base in Saigon during the Vietnam War.
1993 - Guitarist Mick Ronson, famed for his collaboration with David Bowie, dies.
2002 - Reading's 'Rising Urinals' are first opened to the public.
Every year - The National Celebration of 'Queens Day' in Holland.
1429 - Joan of Arc enters the Orleans army.
1789 - At his Inauguration as US President, George Washington starts the tradition of kissing bibles and saying 'So help me God' at the end of the oath.
1812 - Lousiana officially becomes the 18th State of the USA.
1918 - The SS Isleworth is sunk off the Isle of Wight.
1926 - The first black female US pilot Bessie Coleman dies in an air crash when she is practising for an air show in Jacksonville, Florida.
1943 - One of the greatest anti-Nazi deceptions of the Second World War, 'Operation Mincemeat', takes place.
1968 - Battle at Dai Do, part of the Vietnam War.
1969 - US Troops in Vietnam are at 543,400 - the highest at any point during the conflict.
1970 - Nixon announces moves to destroy North Vietnamese and Vietcong sanctuaries during the Vietnam War.
1973 - Nixon makes the first of three speeches on the Watergate scandal - an event mentioned in the lyrics of Billy Joel's 'We Didn't Start The Fire'.
1975 - The last ten US marines are evacuated from the Tan Son Nhut air base in Saigon, one of the final events of the Vietnam War.
1993 - Virgin 1215 AM is launched - the first national commercial pop Radio station in Britain.
1993 - Mick Ronson, ace lead guitarist in David Bowie's 1970s group, 'Spiders from Mars', departed Earth.