1346 - Charles IV of Luxembourg was elected Holy Roman Emperor in Germany.
1488 - James III of Scotland was murdered after his defeat at the Battle of Sauchieburn, Stirling. He was succeeded by his son James IV.
1509 - King Henry VIII married his first of six wives, Catherine of Aragon.
1770 - Captain James Cook discovered the Great Barrier Reef off of Australia when he ran aground.
1798 - Napoleon Bonaparte took the island of Malta.
1847 - Sir John Franklin died in Canada while attempting to discover the Northwest Passage. Franklin was an English naval officer and an Arctic explorer.
1903 - King Alexander and Queen Draga of Serbia were murdered in a coup by members of the Serbian army.
1910 - Jacques-Yves Cousteau was born. He was the French underwater explorer that invented the Aqua-Lung diving apparatus.
1927 - Charles A. Lindberg was presented the first Distinguished Flying Cross.
1934 - The Disarmament Conference in Geneva ended in failure.
1937 - Soviet leader Josef Stalin began a purge of Red Army generals.
1942 - The U.S. and the Soviet Union signed a lend lease agreement to aid the Soviets in their effort in World War II.
1943 - During World War II, the Italian island of Pantelleria surrendered after a heavy air bombardment.
1963 - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was arrested in Florida for trying to integrate restaurants.
1982 - Steven Spielberg's movie "E.T." opened.
1987 - Margaret Thatcher became the first British prime minister in 160 years to win a third consecutive term of office.
1993 - Steven Spielberg's movie "Jurassic Park" opened.