1820 – The Venus de Milo is discovered on the Aegean island of Melos.
1893 – The first recorded college basketball game occurs at Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.
1904 – Longacre Square in Midtown Manhattan is renamed Times Square after The New York Times.
1906 – Auguste Deter, the first person to be diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, dies.
1911 – Dutch physicist Heike Kamerlingh Onnes discovers superconductivity.
1913 – The 17th Amendment to the United States Constitution, requiring direct election of Senators, becomes law.
1942 – World War II: The Japanese take Bataan in the Philippines.
1943 – U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in an attempt to check inflation, freezes wages and prices, prohibits workers from changing jobs unless the war effort would be aided thereby, and bars rate increases by common carriers and public utilities.
1945 – World War II: After an air raid accidentally destroys a train carrying about 4,000 Nazi concentration camp internees in Prussian Hanover, the survivors are massacred by Nazis.
1952 – U.S. President Harry Truman calls for the seizure of all domestic steel mills to prevent a nationwide strike.
1968 – BOAC Flight 712 catches fire shortly after take off. As a result of her actions in the accident, Barbara Jane Harrison is awarded a posthumous George Cross, the only GC awarded to a woman in peacetime.
1974 – At Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium, Hank Aaron hits his 715th career home run to surpass Babe Ruth's 39-year-old record.
1975 – Frank Robinson manages the Cleveland Indians in his first game as major league baseball's first African American manager.
1987 – Los Angeles Dodgers executive Al Campanis resigns amid controversy over racially charged remarks he had made while on Nightline.
1992 – Retired tennis great Arthur Ashe announces that he has AIDS, acquired from blood transfusions during one of his two heart surgeries.
2005 – Over four million people attend the funeral of Pope John Paul II.