1493 - Christopher Columbus left Spain with 17 ships on his second voyage to the Western Hemisphere.
1513 - The Pacific Ocean was discovered by Spanish explorer Vasco Nunez de Balboa when he crossed the Isthmus of Panama. He named the body of water the South Sea.
1956 - A transatlantic telephone-cable system began operation between Newfoundland and Scotland.
1983 - 38 Irish nationalist guerillas shot their way out of prison near Belfast, Northern Ireland.
1990 - The U.N. Security Council voted to impose an air embargo against Iraq. Cuba was the only dissenting vote.