1765 - Prime Minister of England Lord Greenville resigned and was replaced by Lord Rockingham.
1774 - Russia and the Ottoman Empire signed the treaty of Kuchuk-Kainardji, ending their six-year war.
1791 - Louis XVI was suspended from office until he agreed to ratify the constitution.
1875 - The new French constitution was finalized.
1912 - Bradley A. Fiske patented the airplane torpedo.
1918 - Czar Nicholas II and his family were executed by Bolsheviks at Ekaterinburg, Russia.
1926 - The first underwater color photographs appeared in "National Geographic" magazine. The pictures had been taken near the Florida Keys.
1940 - Adolf Hitler ordered the preparations to begin on the invasion of England, known as Operation Sea Lion.
1942 - French police officers rounded up 13,000 Jews and held them in the Winter Velodrome. The round-up was part of an agreement between Pierre Laval and the Nazis. Germany had agreed to not deport French Jews if France arrested foreign Jews.
1944 - Soviet troops occupied Vilna, Lithuania, in their drive toward Germany.
1945 - The United States detonated the first atomic bomb.
1969 - Apollo 11 blasted off from Cape Kennedy, FL, and began the first manned mission to land on the moon.
1979 - Saddam Hussein became president of Iraq after forcing Hasan al-Bakr to resign.
2005 - J.K. Rowling's book "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" was released. It was the sixth in the Harry Potter series. The book sold 6.9 million copies on its first day of release.