1831 -- A new­ly re­built Lon­don Bridge opens, re­plac­ing the aged and de­crepit me­dieval struc­ture. The old bridge's fea­ture of pikes for the dis­play of de­cap­i­tat­ed heads was not re­tained, to the dis­ap­point­ment of some.


1932 -- The positron an­ti­mat­ter par­ti­cle is dis­cov­ered, which is of ben­e­fit not on­ly to sci­ence but es­pe­cial­ly to sci­ence fic­tion.


1977 -- U.S. Se­nate hear­ing be­gins on the se­cret mind-con­trol project MKUl­tra, which evolved from ear­li­er Nazi ex­per­i­ments. The mat­ter be­came awk­ward enough af­ter it was pub­li­cized, that reg­u­la­tions were put in place for sim­i­lar projects in the fu­ture.


1987 -- The Fair­ness Doc­trine is re­scind­ed by the U.S. Fed­er­al Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Com­mis­sion, to pro­mote di­ver­si­ty in me­dia bias.


1963 -- World nu­cle­ar pow­ers sign the Par­tial Nu­cle­ar Test Ban Treaty, which pro­hibits the sig­na­to­ry na­tions from det­o­nat­ing atom­ic bombs or spread­ing ra­dioac­tive pol­lu­tion on any­one but their own cit­i­zens.


1806 -- Em­per­or Fran­cis II dis­solves the out­mod­ed and fail­ing Holy Ro­man Em­pire, in or­der to de­vote full re­sources to his start­up em­pire based in Aus­tria.


1789 -- U.S. Depart­ment of War is es­tab­lished, one of the most en­dur­ing and em­blem­at­ic agen­cies of the na­tion, even though its name would lat­er change to the more be­nign-sound­ing Depart­ment of De­fense.


1974 -- Since Twit­ter has not yet been in­vent­ed, U.S. Pres­i­dent Richard Nixon an­nounces his im­pend­ing res­ig­na­tion on tele­vi­sion.


1944 -- U.S. For­est Ser­vice re­leas­es the first Smokey the Bear an­ti-wild­fire posters. After sev­er­al maul­ing in­ci­dents in­volv­ing mis­guid­ed cam­era-wield­ing park tourists, the char­ac­ter is re­drawn to look more men­ac­ing.


1990 -- NASA's Mag­el­lan space probe reach­es Venus, but does not im­me­di­ate­ly find vi­su­al ev­i­dence of Sovi­et spy bases.


3114 B.C. -- Begin­ning of the Mayan cal­en­dar. It is cur­rent­ly un­known whether this event was as close­ly ob­served as the cal­en­dar's end date.


30 B.C. -- Cleopa­tra com­mits sui­cide af­ter be­ing de­feat­ed by the Ro­mans, soon af­ter which Egypt be­comes less in­ter­est­ing for an ex­tend­ed time.


1961 -- The first Ber­lin Wall it­er­a­tion is erect­ed overnight, break­ing sev­er­al world speed records in bar­ri­cade con­struc­tion.


2003 -- Pow­er black­outs af­fect large ar­eas of the east­ern U.S. and Cana­da, pro­vid­ing a par­tial prac­tice run for sud­den so­ci­etal col­lapse.


1483 -- The new­ly-opened Sis­tine Chapel is con­se­crat­ed and ded­i­cat­ed with a cel­e­bra­to­ry mass, fol­lowed by a live­ly wine and cheese af­ter­par­ty.


1977 -- Of­fi­cial­ly rec­og­nized death date of singer Elvis Pres­ley, al­though un­of­fi­cial sight­ings in re­mote lo­ca­tions still oc­cur with de­creas­ing fre­quen­cy.


1982 -- First com­pact discs are re­leased to the pub­lic. The some­what-fa­mil­iar shape un­for­tu­nate­ly leads to many ru­ined phono­graph nee­dles and the discs them­selves, dur­ing the ini­tial days.


1783 -- A large, bright me­te­or is seen in the skies off the east­ern coasts of Bri­tain; many ob­servers as­sume that there are sci­en­tif­ic ex­pla­na­tions.


2005 -- Rus­sia and Chi­na be­gin Peace Mis­sion 2005, a joint ex­er­cise to prac­tice im­pos­ing peace on a tar­get us­ing var­i­ous types of mil­i­tary force.


1866 -- Amer­i­can Civ­il War is for­mal­ly de­clared to have end­ed, al­though in scat­tered ar­eas it would con­tin­ue to be fought in­def­i­nite­ly.


1993 -- Ap­par­ent me­chan­i­cal fail­ure leads to the loss of com­mu­ni­ca­tions with the Mars Ob­serv­er space probe. Its where­abouts re­main un­known.


1864 -- Sign­ing of the first ar­ti­cles of the Gene­va Con­ven­tions. Although well-meant, they re­main dif­fi­cult to ob­serve or en­force de­spite nu­mer­ous amend­ments and re­minders.


1775 -- Bri­tain's King Ge­orge III pub­licly de­clares his dis­gruntle­ment with his re­mote, restive Amer­i­can colonies.


2006 -- Plu­to los­es its plan­e­tary sta­tus and be­comes just an or­bit­ing thing around the Sun.


1948 -- U.S. House Un-Amer­i­can Ac­tiv­i­ties Com­mit­tee be­gins tele­vi­sion broad­casts of hear­ings; pop­corn sales soar.


1789 -- France en­acts its land­mark Dec­la­ra­tion of the Rights of Man and of the Ci­ti­zen, which guar­an­tees the uni­ver­sal right to a swift and dig­ni­fied be­head­ing.


1928 -- The Unit­ed States, Ger­many and France sign the Kel­logg-Briand Pact, which re­nounces war, dur­ing a brief in­ter-war pe­ri­od.


1867 -- Mid­way Atoll, its name apt­ly de­scrib­ing its strate­gi­cal­ly per­fect ge­o­graph­ic lo­ca­tion, is an­nexed by the U.S. for glob­al ac­ces­si­bil­i­ty pur­pos­es.


1991 -- Com­mu­nist Par­ty of the Sovi­et Union is de­clared il­le­gal and dis­solved; it will re­gen­er­ate lat­er in a per­sis­tent but less pow­er­ful form.


1990 -- At a news con­fer­ence, U.S. Pres­i­dent Ge­orge H. W. Bush fore­warns of a po­ten­tial New World Order.


1998 -- North Korea launch­es its first satel­lite, which ei­ther fails to reach or­bit or suc­cess­ful­ly de­ploys with an­ti-Western cloak­ing.