1190 - Roman Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa drowned in the Saleph River while leading an army of the Third Crusade to free Jerusalem.
1776 - The Continental Congress appointed a committee to write a Declaration of Independence.
1793 - The Jardin des Plantes zoo opened in Paris. It was the first public zoo.
1916 - Mecca, under control of the Turks, fell to the Arabs during the Great Arab Revolt.
1940 - Italy declared war on France and Britain. In addition, Canada declared war on Italy.
1942 - The Gestapo massacred 173 male residents of Lidice, Czechoslovakia, in retaliation for the killing of a Nazi official.
1943 - Laszlo Biro patented his ballpoint pen. Biro was a Hungarian journalist.
1943 - The Allies began bombing Germany around the clock.
1946 - Italy established a republic replacing its monarchy.
1971 - The U.S. ended a 21-year trade embargo of China.
1984 - The U.S. Army successfully tested an antiballistic missile.
1993 - It was announced by scientists that genetic material was extracted from an insect that lived when dinosaurs roamed the Earth.
1996 - Britain and Ireland opened Northern Ireland peace talks. The IRA's political arm Sinn Fein was excluded.
1999 - NATO suspended air strikes in Yugoslavia after Slobodan Milosevic agreed to withdraw his forces from Kosovo.