Today in History in...
1540 – Thomas Cromwell is executed at the order of Henry VIII of England on charges of treason. Henry marries his fifth wife, Catherine Howard, on the same day.
1794 – French Revolution: Maximilien Robespierre and Louis Antoine de Saint-Just are executed by guillotine in Paris, France.
1854 – USS Constellation (1854), the last all-sail warship built by the United States Navy, is commissioned.
1860 – Elias M. Ammons, American politician, 19th Governor of Colorado (d. 1925), born in North Carolina.
1864 – American Civil War: Battle of Ezra Church – rebel troops make a third unsuccessful attempt to drive Union forces from Atlanta, Georgia.
1866 – At the age of 18, Vinnie Ream becomes the first and youngest female artist to receive a commission from the United States government for a statue (of Abraham Lincoln).
1866 – Albertson Van Zo Post, American fencer (d. 1938), born in Cincinnati, Ohio
1868 – The 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution is certified, establishing African American citizenship and guaranteeing due process of law.
1896 – The city of Miami, Florida is incorporated.
1898 – Lawrence Gray, American actor and singer (d. 1970), born in San Francisco, California
1900 – Catherine Dale Owen, American actress (d. 1965), born in Louisville, Kentucky
1901 – Freddie Fitzsimmons, American baseball player, coach, and manager (d. 1979), born in Mishawaka, Indiana
1901 – Rudy Vallée, American singer, actor, and saxophonist (d. 1986), born in Vermont
1907 – Earl Tupper, American inventor and businessman, founded Tupperware Brands (d. 1983), born in New Hampshire
1915 – Charles Townes, American physicist and educator, Nobel Prize laureate born in South Carolina
1929 – Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, American journalist, 37th First Lady of the United States (d. 1994), born in New York
1932 - – U.S. President Herbert Hoover orders the United States Army to forcibly evict the "Bonus Army" of World War I veterans gathered in Washington, D.C.
1932 – Natalie Babbitt, American author and illustrator, born in Dayton, Ohio.
1935 – First flight of the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress.
1940 – Philip Proctor, American voice actor and screenwriter born in Goshen, Indiana
1942 – Marty Brennaman, American sportscaster, born in Virginia
1943 – Bill Bradley, American basketball player and politician, born in Missouri
1943 – World War II: Operation Gomorrah – The Royal Air Force bombs Hamburg, Germany causing a firestorm that kills 42,000 German civilians.
1945 – A U.S. Army B-25 bomber crashes into the 79th floor of the Empire State Building killing 14 and injuring 26.
1945 - Jim Davis, American cartoonist, created Garfield, born in Indiana.
1962 – Rachel Sweet, American actress, singer, producer, and screenwriter, born in Akron, Ohio
1965 – Vietnam War: U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson announces his order to increase the number of United States troops in South Vietnam from 75,000 to 125,000.
1996 – The remains of a prehistoric man are discovered near Kennewick, Washington. Such remains will be known as the Kennewick Man.
2002 - Nine coal miners trapped in the flooded Quecreek Mine in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, are rescued after 77 hours underground.