1574 - Discovery of the Juan Fernández Islands off Chile.
1718 - Off the coast of North Carolina, British pirate Edward Teach (best known as "Blackbeard") is killed in battle with a boarding party led by Lieutenant Robert Maynard.
1864 - American Civil War: Sherman's March to the Sea: Confederate General John Bell Hood invades Tennessee in an unsuccessful attempt to draw Union General William T. Sherman from Georgia.
1922 - Egyptology: Howard Carter, assisted by Lord Carnarvon, opens the tomb of Tutankhamun.
1928 - First execution of Ravel's Boléro in Paris.
1935 - The China Clipper took off from Alameda, California in an attempt to deliver the first airmail cargo across the Pacific Ocean (the airplane later reached its destination, Manila, and delivered over 110,000 pieces of mail).
1940 - World War II: Following the Italian invasion, Greek troops advances into Albanian soil and capture Korytsa.
1963 - In Dallas, Texas, US President John F. Kennedy is killed and Texas Governor John B. Connally is seriously wounded by an assassin, identified as Lee Harvey Oswald, who was later captured and charged with the murder of police officer J. D. Tippit. That same day, US Vice-President Lyndon B. Johnson is sworn in as the 36th President of the United States.
1967 - UN Security Council Resolution 242 is adopted by the UN Security Council, establishing a set of the principles aimed at guiding negotiations for an Arab-Israeli peace settlement.
1972 - Vietnam War: The United States loses its first B-52 Stratofortress of the war.
1973 - The Italian Fascist organization Ordine Nuovo is disbanded.
1974 - The United Nations General Assembly grants the Palestine Liberation Organization observer status.
1975 - Juan Carlos is declared King of Spain following the death of Francisco Franco.
1977 - British Airways inaugurates a regular London to New York City supersonic Concorde service.
1977 - First three nodes of the ARPAnet are connected, in what would eventually become the Internet.
1986 - Mike Tyson defeats Trevor Brubick to become youngest Heavyweight champion in boxing history.
1987 - Two Chicago television stations are hijacked by an unknown pirate dressed as Max Headroom.
1988 - In Palmdale, California, the first prototype B-2 Spirit stealth bomber is revealed.
1989 - In West Beirut, a bomb explodes near the motorcade of Lebanese President Rene Moawad, killing him.
1995 - Toy Story is released as the first feature-length film created completely using computer-generated imagery.
1998 - Albania constitution adopted by popular referendum.
2002 - In Nigeria, more than 100 people are killed at an attack aimed at the contestants of the Miss World contest.
2004 - The Orange Revolution begins in Ukraine, resulting from the presidential elections.
2005 - Angela Merkel becomes the first female Chancellor of Germany.