1718 - Hundreds of colonists from France arrived in Louisiana. Some settled in present-day New Orleans.
1814 - The U.S. Library of Congress was destroyed by British forces.
1825 - Uruguay declared independence from Brazil.
1840 - Joseph Gibbons received a patent for the seeding machine.
1875 - Captain Matthew Webb swam from Dover, England, to Calais, France making him the first person to swim the English Channel. The feat took about 22 hours.
1902 - "Al-Hoda" began publication in New York City making it the first Arabic daily newspaper in the U.S.
1916 - The National Park Service was established as part of the U.S. Department of the Interior.
1920 - Ethelda Bleibtrey won the 100-meter freestyle swimming competition in Antwerp, Belgium. She was the first woman to win an Olympic competition for the U.S.
1920 - The first airplane to fly from New York to Alaska arrived in Nome.
1921 - The U.S. signed a peace treaty with Germany.
1939 - The movie "Wizard of Oz" opened around the United States.
1940 - Arno Rudolphi and Ann Hayward were married while suspended in parachutes at the World’s Fair in New York City.
1941 - Soviet and British troops invaded Iran. This was in reaction to the Shah's refusal to reduce the number of German residents.
1941 - Allied forces invaded Iran. Within four days the Soviet Union and England controlled Iran.
1941 - U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt signed the bill appropriating funds for construction of the Pentagon.
1944 - Paris, France, was liberated by Allied forces ending four years of German occupation.
1944 - Romania declared war on Germany.
1946 - Ben Hogan won the PGA in Portland, OR. It was his first major golf title.
1949 - NBC Radio debuted "Father Knows Best." The show went to TV in 1954.
1950 - U.S. President Truman ordered the seizure of U.S. railroads to avert a strike.
1972 - In Great Britain, computerized axial tomography (CAT scan) was introduced.
1978 - The Turin shroud believed to be the burial cloth of Jesus Christ went on display for the first time in 45 years.
1981 - The U.S. Voyager 2 sent back pictures and data about Saturn. The craft came within 63,000 miles of the planet.
1983 - The U.S. and the Soviet Union signed a $10 billion grain pact.
1987 - Saudi Arabia denounced the "group of terrorists" that ran the Iranian government.
1988 - Iran and Iraq began talks in Geneva after ending their eight years of war.
1990 - Military action was authorized by the United Nations to enforce the trade embargo that had been placed on Iraq after their invasion of Kuwait.
1991 - Byelorussia declared independence from the Soviet Union.
1992 - It was reported by researchers that cigarette smoking significantly increased the risk of developing cataracts.
1993 - The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 3,652.09, an all-time high.
1995 - Harry Wu, human rights activist, returned to the United States. He said the spying case against him in China was "all lies."
1997 - The tobacco industry agreed to an $11.3 billion settlement with the state of Florida.
1998 - A survey released said that 1/3 of Americans use the Internet.