This Day in History

August 10, 1874 - Herbert Hoover born

2018 - May Day

2017 - Easter

2017 - National Quilting Day

2016 - Hanukkah begins

2014 - Winter begins

2014 - Human Rights Day Observed

2013 - New Year's Eve

2012 - Labor Day 2012

2012 - Leap day

2011 - International Jazz Day

2009 - President Barack Obama gives commencement address at Notre Dame University

2008 - Poem in Your Pocket Day

2001 - President George W. Bush declares war on terrorism

1994 - Former President Richard Nixon dies

1993 - Death of first African American Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall

1993 - World Water Day

1992 - Patrick Buchanan delivers "Culture War" speech at Republican National Convention

1989 - Pi Day

1987 - Ronald Reagan’s Berlin Wall Speech

1986 - First National War Monument for Native Americans is dedicated

1986 - President Reagan addresses nation on Challenger Disaster

1985 - Bernard Harris first Black astronaut to take spacewalk

1983 - President Ronald Reagan calls Soviet Union “evil empire”

1982 - The Vietnam Veterans Memorial dedicated on the Washington Mall

1981 - Chilean writer Isabel Allende begins “House of the Spirits”

1981 - President Ronald Reagan shot

1978 - The National Gallery of Art's East building is accepted for the nation

1973 - Alexander Solzhenitsyn publishes expose of Soviet prison system “Gulag Archipelago”

1973 - Supreme Court, in Roe v. Wade, holds right to privacy includes abortion decision

1971 - Memorial Day observed

1970 - Earth Day

1970 - Alexander Solzhenitsyn wins Nobel Prize for literature

1970 - National Guard troops fire on Kent State student protesters

1968 - My Lai massacre in Vietnam

1968 - National Hispanic Heritage Month

1967 - Thurgood Marshall is confirmed as first African-American Supreme Court Justice

1967 - Thurgood Marshall appointed to Supreme Court

1967 - In Loving v. Virginia, Supreme Court strikes down laws against interracial marriages

1966 - Kwanzaa begins

1966 - International Literacy Day established by UNESCO

1965 - J. K. Rowling, British author best known as the creator of the Harry Potter fantasy series, born

1965 - Dorothy Day speaks out against war

1965 - The National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities are established by Lyndon Johnson

1964 - President Johnson signs Civil Rights Act

1962 - Elizabeth Alexander, American poet and playwright, is born

1961 - President Eisenhower warns of danger of military industrial complex

1961 - President Dwight Eisenhower gives his Farewell Address to the nation

1960 - Final round of televised debates between JFK and Nixon

1959 - Alaska becomes 49th State

1957 - President Eisenhower signs first civil rights bill to pass Congress since Reconstruction into law

1954 - Senator Joseph McCarthy charges Communists in CIA

1954 - Joseph Welch confronts Sen. Joe McCarthy: “Have you no sense of decency, sir?”

1953 - American playwright Eugene O’Neill dies

1952 - President Truman seizes control of the steel industry to avoid strike

1952 - Naomi Shihab Nye, American poet born

1951 - “The Catcher in the Rye,” by J.D. Salinger, published

1950 - International Children's Day

1948 - President Truman orders desegregation of military forces

1945 - “The Glass Menagerie” opens on Broadway

1945 - “The Glass Menagerie” opens on Broadway

1943 - Chiang Kai-shek takes oath of office as Chinese president

1942 - Martin Scorsese, American film director, born

1942 - Cinematic classic “Casablanca” premiers in New York City

1941 - Novelist and critic Virginia Woolf drowns herself at age 59

1940 - Winston Churchill delivers his "Blood, Toil, Tears and Sweat" speech

1940 - Winston Churchill delivers “Their Finest Hour” speech

1940 - The novel “Native Son” by Richard Wright published

1940 - Senate ratifies Louisiana Purchase

1939 - Marian Anderson sings at Lincoln Memorial

1939 - Seamus Heaney, Irish poet, is born

1939 - Movie version of "Gone With the Wind" premieres

1938 - Kate Smith introduces “God Bless America” over radio

1937 - Golden Gate Bridge opens

1937 - John Steinbeck’s novel “Of Mice and Men” published

1935 - George Gershwin’s “Porgy & Bess” opens on Broadway

1935 - American singer Elvis Presley born

1934 - The Apollo Theatre opens in New York City

1934 - Wendell Berry, American poet, born

1933 - Prohibition repealed

1933 - American historian David McCullough born

1932 - Sylvia Plath, American poet, is born

1932 - American author John Updike born

1930 - Poet Derek Walcott born

1928 - American poet Donald Hall born

1928 - Gabriel García Márquez, Colombian writer, born

1926 - Historian Carter G. Woodson establishes “Negro History Week”

1925 - John T. Scopes arrested in Tennessee for teaching Darwin’s theory of evolution

1924 - First Winter Olympics begin in Chamonix, France

1924 - Indian Citizenship Act is enacted by Congress

1922 - American novelist Kurt Vonnegut born

1922 - Lincoln Memorial is dedicated

1922 - Jean-Louis “Jack” Kerouac, American “Beat Generation” writer and poet, born

1921 - Author of “Roots” and co-author of “Autobiography of Malcom X,” Alex Haley, born

1920 - Russian-born science fiction writer Isaac Asimov born

1919 - 18th Amendment becomes law

1919 - American musician, singer, and activist Woodrow Wilson “Woody” Guthrie born

1917 - Jacob Lawrence, American painter, is born

1917 - Mexican Constitution is adopted

1917 - Congress passes the Immigration Act

1917 - Lenin leads Bolshevik Revolution in Russia

1916 - American novelist and short story writer, Shirley Jackson, born

1916 - Louis Brandeis nominated to Supreme Court

1914 - Ralph Ellison, African-American writer, is born

1914 - Panama Canal opens

1914 - Mother’s Day proclaimed by President Woodrow Wilson

1914 - George Bernard Shaw’s play “Pygmalion” premiers in London

1914 - Edgar Lee Masters publishes the first poem of what became “The Spoon River Anthology”

1914 - German troops burn library of Louvain, Belgium

1914 - Octavio Paz Lozano, Mexican writer, poet, and diplomat, born

1914 - Germany invades Belgium; Britian declares war on Germany; Great War begins

1913 - Last word of American writer, Ambrose Bierce, out of Mexico before his disappearance

1912 - Sherwood Anderson walked out of his office as president of the Anderson Manufacturing to pursue a writing career

1912 - Theodore Roosevelt gives New Nationalism Speech

1911 - The Treaty of Ciudad Juárez peace treaty signed, concluding the initial phase of the Mexican Revolution

1911 - Elizabeth Bishop, American poet, is born

1911 - William Golding, English author, born

1911 - Romare Bearden, American artist, is born (ca. 1911)

1911 - American playwright Tennessee Williams is born

1911 - Ronald Reagan, the 40th President of the United States (1981–1989), is born

1908 - Richard Wright, American author, born

1907 - Helene Johnson, youngest of the Harlem Renaissance poets, is born

1906 - Teddy Roosevelt gives famous speech on “muckraking”

1906 - Paul Laurence Dunbar, African American poet and novelist, dies

1905 - O.Henry short story, "The Gift of the Magi" is published in The New York Sunday World

1905 - The National Audubon Society founded

1904 - Bloomsday: James Joyce’s novel, “Ulysses,” takes place in and around Dublin, Ireland

1904 - American playwright Moss Hart born

1904 - Diplomat and Civil Rights leader Ralph Bunche born

1904 - Pablo Neruda, Chilean poet and politician, born

1901 - Theodore Roosevelt becomes President on death of McKinley

1899 - E.B. White, American writer, born

1898 - President William McKinley asks Congress for a declaration of war against Spain

1898 - American composer George Gershwin born

1893 - Artist Joan Miró is born

1893 - Lizzie Borden trial begins in New Bedford, MA

1893 - Dorothy Parker, American writer, poet, critic and wit, born

1892 - Ellis Island Immigrant Station officially opens

1892 - American theologian and political philosopher Reinhold Niebuhr born

1890 - Charles Darwin, English naturalist, is born

1890 - Boris Pasternak, Russian author of Doctor Zhivago, born

1890 - Yosemite National Park established

1890 - 300 Sioux Indians are killed by U.S. troops at Wounded Knee, South Dakota

1890 - Death of Chief Sitting Bull

1890 - Kicking Bear delivers speech to Hunkpapa Sioux

1889 - Opening of the first Eiffel Tower elevator to the public

1889 - Over 2,000 residents of Johnstown, PA, die in a massive flood

1889 - Gabriela Mistral (Lucila Godoy y Alcayaga) Chilean poet, born

1888 - T.E. Lawrence (“Lawrence of Arabia”) born

1888 - American composer Irving Berlin born

1888 - Louisa May Alcott, American author, dies

1887 - Dawes Act passed—Indians living apart from tribe granted citizenship

1885 - Ferdinand “Jellyroll” Morton, jazz musician, born

1885 - British novelist and poet D. H. Lawrence born

1885 - American poet Elinor Wylie born

1883 - Brooklyn Bridge opens

1882 - Virginia Woolf, British writer, is born

1882 - N.C. Wyeth, American artist and illustrator, is born

1882 - James Joyce, Irish novelist and poet, born

1880 - Douglas MacArthur, U.S. Army General and Commander of Allied Forces, WWII, is born

1880 - American journalist and critic H. L. Mencken, of American born

1880 - General George C. Marshall, soldier and statesman, born

1879 - Albert Einstein, groundbreaking physicist, is born in Germany

1878 - American author Upton Sinclair born

1877 - Hermann Hesse, German-Swiss poet, novelist, and painter, born

1876 - American short story writer Sherwood Anderson born

1876 - Frederick Douglass delivers speech at Freedman’s Monument

1876 - Susan Glaspell, American playwright, born

1874 - American modernist Gertrude Stein born

1872 - Paul Laurence Dunbar, first African American poet to garner national critical acclaim, born

1871 - Journalist Henry M. Stanley finds missionary David Livingstone in Africa

1871 - Frederick Douglass delivers Decoration Day Address

1869 - Mark Twain’s satire, “Innocents Abroad,” published

1869 - Spanish poet, Frederico Garcia Lorca, is born

1868 - Memorial Day first observed

1867 - British author Charles Dickens gives his first public reading in NYC

1867 - Frank Lloyd Wright, American modernist architect, is born

1865 - Confederacy approves use of black soldiers

1864 - Yosemite Valley Act signed by President Lincoln

1864 - In Annual Message to Congress, Lincoln calls for passage of 13th Amendment

1864 - Battle of Nashville

1863 - President Lincoln writes letter of condolence to Fanny McCullough

1863 - President Lincoln announces Reconstruction Plan for South

1862 - President Lincoln signs act making West Virginia a state

1862 - American short story writer O. Henry born

1862 - Henry David Thoreau dies

1862 - Julia Ward Howe’s “Battle Hymn of the Republic” published

1861 - Julia Ward Howe composes “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”

1861 - George B. McClellan made general-in-chief of Union armies

1861 - Texas secedes from the Union

1860 - Legendary sharpshooter Anne Oakley born

1859 - Abolitionist John Brown hanged

1859 - Charles Darwin publishes “On The Origin of Species”

1858 - Third Lincoln–Douglas debate

1856 - Nikola Tesla, Serbian-American inventor, born

1856 - L. Frank Baum (“The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”) born

1854 - Henry David Thoreau publishes “Walden”

1854 - Irish wit and author Oscar Wilde born

1851 - Herman Melville’s “Moby-Dick; or, The Whale” published in the United States

1850 - Congress passes Fugitive Slave Law

1849 - A.A. Milne, English writer of Winnie-the-Pooh series, is born; “Winnie-the-Pooh” Day

1849 - “The Children’s Poet” James Whitcomb Riley born

1848 - Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Irish-born American sculptor, born

1848 - Thoreau moves into cabin at Walden Pond

1847 - Thoreau leaves Walden Pond for Concord, Massachusetts

1846 - Henry David Thoreau spends night in jail protesting Mexican War and slavery

1846 - Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning marry secretly

1846 - William Frederick Cody, “Buffalo Bill,” born

1846 - Temperance advocate Carry Nation born

1845 - Robert Browning writes his first love letter to Elizabeth Barrett

1843 - Charles Dickens’s classic story “A Christmas Carol” published

1843 - Manjiro, first Japanese immigrant to the continental U.S., arrives

1841 - John Quincy Adams makes arguments in Amistad Case

1841 - Herman Melville boards the New Bedford whaleship the Acushnet bound for the South Pacific

1840 - Thomas Nast, “Father of the American cartoon,” born

1839 - The USS Washington seizes Amistad off Long Island coast

1838 - Historian Henry Adams born

1837 - Emerson delivers “American Scholar” speech

1836 - Battle of the Alamo

1836 - Texas wins independence from Mexico

1836 - Sam Houston elected president of Republic of Texas

1834 - American painter James McNeill Whistler born

1833 - Johannes Brahms, German composer, is born

1833 - Andrew Jackson shuts down Second Bank of U.S.

1832 - Louisa May Alcott, American novelist, born

1832 - President Andrew Jackson vetoes Bank Bill

1830 - English poet Christina Georgina Rossetti born

1830 - Congress passes Indian Removal Act

1828 - Feminist Frances “Fanny” Wright delivers speech about women's rights

1827 - Nakahama Manjirō (中濱 万次郎) the first Japanese national to emigrate to America, born

1826 - The American Temperance Society, the first national organization to advocate prohibition, founded

1823 - “A Visit from St. Nicholas” published

1822 - Edward Everett Hale, abolitionist & short story writer, born

1822 - Matthew Arnold, British poet, born

1821 - Mexico gains independence from Spain when the Plan of Iguala is promulgated

1818 - Handel’s “Messiah” first performed in Boston

1817 - Henry David Thoreau, American writer and transcendentalist, is born

1814 - Dolley Madison saves Gilbert Stuart portrait of George Washington

1812 - Charles Dickens, born

1812 - Napoleon enters Moscow

1811 - William Makepeace Thackeray, English novelist, born

1811 - George Caleb Bingham, American painter, is born

1809 - Alfred, Lord Tennyson, English poet, born

1809 - Abraham Lincoln, 16th U.S. president, is born

1807 - Former vice president Aaron Burr arrested for treason against the United States

1805 - French writer and political thinker Alexis de Tocqueville born

1804 - Alexander Hamilton–Aaron Burr duel

1803 - Lousiana Purchase Treaty signed

1803 - French composer Hector Berlioz born

1803 - American essayist, lecturer, and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson born

1800 - Library of Congress established

1796 - President George Washington gives his farewell address to the nation

1795 - John Keats, English poet, is born

1793 - Sam Houston born

1791 - Mozart’s “Magic Flute” premieres in Vienna

1791 - The Bill of Rights becomes part of Constitution

1790 - Alvin Ailey, American choreographer and activist, is born

1790 - The first book copyrighted under American law, “The Philadelphia Speller,” is published

1789 - Novelist James Fennimore Cooper born

1788 - The Federalist Papers are published

1788 - Lord Byron, English Romantic poet, is born

1785 - African American abolitionist David Walker born

1785 - Ornithologist, naturalist, and painter John James Audubon born

1782 - American statesman Daniel Webster born

1782 - Congress adopts the Great Seal of the United States

1781 - British ship Zong crew throws slaves overboard to claim insurance

1773 - Boston Tea Party

1772 - Samuel Coleridge born

1770 - German composer Ludwig van Beethoven born

1770 - British troops harassed by a mob open fire, killing Crispus Attucks and four others in the Boston Massacre

1765 - Britain enacts Quartering Act in American colonies

1736 - Ann Lee, founder of the Shakers religious movement, born