0404 - The last gladiator competition was held in Rome.
1622 - The Papal Chancery adopted January 1st as the beginning of the New Year (instead of March 25th).
1772 - The first traveler's checks were issued in London.
1785 - London's oldest daily paper "The Daily Universal Register" (later renamed "The Times" in 1788) was first published.
1801 - The Act of Union of England and Ireland came into force.
1801 - Italian astronomer Giuseppe Piazzi became the first person to discover an asteroid. He named it Ceres.
1808 - The U.S. prohibited import of slaves from Africa.
1840 - The first recorded bowling match was recorded in the U.S.
1887 - Queen Victoria was proclaimed empress of India in Delhi.
1900 - Nigeria became a British protectorate with Frederick Lagard as the high commissioner.
1901 - The Commonwealth of Australia was founded. Lord Hopetoun officially assumed the duties as the first Governor-General.
1909 - The first payments of old-age pensions were made in Britain. People over 70 received five shillings a week.
1913 - The post office began parcel post deliveries.
1934 - Alcatraz Island officially became a Federal Prison.
1942 - U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill issued a declaration called the "United Nations." It was signed by 26 countries that vowed to create an international postwar World War II peacekeeping organization.
1945 - France was admitted to the United Nations.
1956 - Sudan gained its independence.
1958 - The European Economic Community (EEC) started operations.
1959 - Fidel Castro overthrew the government of Fulgencio Batista, and seized power in Cuba.
1973 - Britain, Ireland, Denmark and Norway joined the EEC.
1987 - A pro-democracy rally took place in Beijing's Tiananmen Square (China).
1995 - The World Trade Organization came into existence. The group of 125 nations monitors global trade.1999 - The euro became currency for 11 Member States of the European Union. Coins and notes were not available until January 1, 2002.