1498 - Christopher Columbus landed on "Isla Santa" (Venezuela).
1774 - Oxygen was isolated from air successfully by chemist Carl Wilhelm and scientist Joseph Priestly.
1790 - The first U.S. census was completed with a total population of 3,929,214 recorded. The areas included were the present states of Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont and Virginia
1834 - Slavery was outlawed in the British empire with an emancipation bill.
1873 - Andrew S. Hallidie successfully tested a cable car. The design was done for San Francisco, CA.
1876 - Colorado became the 38th state to join the United States.
1893 - Shredded wheat was patented by Henry Perky and William Ford.
1894 - The first Sino-Japanese War erupted. The dispute was over control of Korea.
1907 - The U.S. Army established an aeronautical division that later became the U.S. Air Force.
1914 - Germany declared war on Russia at the beginning of World War I.
1936 - Adolf Hitler presided over the Olympic games as they opened in Berlin.
1943 - In the Solomon Islands, the U.S. Navy patrol torpedo boat PT-109 sank after being hit by the Japanese destroyer Amagiri. The boat was under the command of Lt. John F. Kennedy. Eleven of the thirteen crew survived.
1944 - In Warsaw, Poland, an uprising against Nazi occupation began. The revolt continued until October 2 when Polish forces surrendered.
1946 - In the U.S., the Atomic Energy Commission was established.
1953 - The first aluminum-faced building was completed. It was the first of this type in America.
1956 - The Social Security Act was amended to provide benefits to disabled workers aged 50-64 and disabled adult children.
1957 - The North American Air Defense Command (NORAD) was created by the United States and Canada.
1973 - The movie "American Graffiti" opened.
1975 - The Helsinki accords pledged the signatory nations to respect human rights.
1976 - The Seattle Seahawks played their first (preseason) game. The Seahawks lost 27-20 to San Francisco.
1978 - Pete Rose (Cincinnati Reds) ended his streak of hitting in 44 consecutive games.
1986 - John McEnroe and Tatum O'Neal were married.
1986 - Bert Blyleven (Minnesota Twins) became only the 10th pitcher to strike out 3,000 batters in his career.
1988 - Martin Scorsese's "The Last Temptation of Christ" opened.
1993 - Reggie Jackson was admitted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY.
1995 - Westinghouse Electric Corporation announced a deal to buy CBS for $5.4 billion.
1998 - The U.S. books and music chain Borders opens its first European outlet with a 40,000-square-foot store on London's Oxford Street.
2006 - Cuban leader Fidel Castro turned over absolute power when he gave his brother Raul authority while he underwent an intestinal surgery.