1521 - The Diet of Worms began, at which Protestant reformer Luther was declared an outlaw by the Roman Catholic church.
1547 - England's King Henry VIII died. He was succeeded by his 9 year-old son, Edward VI.
1788 - The first British penal settlement was founded at Botany Bay.
1807 - London's Pall Mall became the first street lit by gaslight.
1871 - France surrendered in the Franco-Prussian War.
1935 - Iceland became the first country to introduce legalized abortion.
1938 - The first ski tow started operation in Vermont.
1945 - During World War II, Allied supplies began reaching China over the newly reopened Burma Road.
1986 - The U.S. space shuttle Challenger exploded just after takeoff. All seven of its crewmembers were killed.
1999 - Ford Motor company announced the purchase of Sweden's Volvo AB for $6.45 billion.