2014: Albert Pujols of the Los Angeles Angels becomes the 26th MLB player to reach 500 career home runs, connecting for two homers in a 7-2 win over the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. He became the third youngest to reach the milestone and also the first player to hit career home runs 499 and 500 in the same game.
2013: Folk singer and guitarist Richie Havens, known for soulful covers of pop and folk songs, and his opening performance at the 1969 Woodstock Festival, dies of a heart attack at age 72 in Jersey City, N.J.
2010: After burning for two days following an explosion that killed 11 crewmen, the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig sinks into the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Louisiana. The well continued to gush oil at the seabed, causing the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history before it could be temporarily capped on July 15. Relief wells were used to permanently seal the well by Sept. 19, 2010.
2005: Zacarias Moussaoui pleads guilty in federal court to conspiring to kill American citizens as part of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. About a year later he would be sentenced to six consecutive life terms in prison. Moussaoui had been in the country taking flight training and was arrested less than a month before the attacks took place.
2004: Pat Tillman, the NFL player who left professional football and enlisted in the U.S. Army in June 2002 in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, dies at age 27 in a friendly fire incident during a firefight with hostile forces in Sperah, Afghanistan. The Army at first reported that Tillman had been killed by enemy fire, and then Lt. Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal approved the award of a Silver Star.
2002: Linda Susan Boreman, better known by her stage name Linda Lovelace and for her role in the enormously successful 1972 adult film "Deep Throat," dies at the age of 53 in Denver, Colo., from injuries she suffered in an April 3, 2002, car accident. In her third autobiography, 1980's "Ordeal," she claimed she had been hypnotized, beaten and threatened at gunpoint to have sex in front of the cameras and spent the rest of her life campaigning against pornography. "Deep Throat" achieved unprecedented popularity among mainstream audiences and quickly became a pop culture reference, most notably when then–Washington Post managing editor Howard Simons chose the film's title as the pseudonym for a Watergate informant.
2000: In a pre-dawn raid, federal agents seize 6-year-old Elián González from his relatives' home in Miami, Fla. González's mother had drowned in November 1999 while attempting to leave Cuba with her son to get to the United States and federal officials initially placed the boy with paternal relatives in Miami. Those relatives sought to keep him in the U.S. against his father's wishes that he be returned to Cuba, but a series of court decisions went against their petition for asylum on his behalf. After he was seized by federal agents, he was returned to Cuba in June 2000.
1998: Disney's Animal Kingdom theme park opens at Walt Disney World near Orlando, Fla. It is the largest single Disney theme park in the world, covering more than 500 acres, and is also the first Disney theme park to be themed entirely around animal conservation.
1996: Humorist and writer Erma Bombeck, who became famous for her newspaper column describing suburban home life from the mid-1960s until the late 1990s, dies of complications from a kidney transplant at the age of 69 in San Francisco, Calif. Bombeck also published 15 books, most of which became bestsellers.
1994: President Richard M. Nixon, the 37th president of the United States, dies at age 81 in New York City, four days after suffering a stroke. Nixon served as president from 1969 to 1974, when he resigned over the Watergate scandal, becoming the only president to resign the office.
1993: The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum is dedicated in Washington, D.C.
1992: A series of explosions in the sewer system in Guadalajara, Mexico, kills 206 people, injures nearly 500 more and leaves 15,000 homeless. Design errors had allowed gas to seep into the city's main sewer pipe and caused gas fumes to build up in the pipes, resulting in 10 explosions that leveled nearly five miles of streets.
1984: Photographer Ansel Adams, best known for his black-and-white landscape photographs of the American West, dies of a heart attack at the age of 82 in Monterey, Calif.
1978: John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd make their first appearance as The Blues Brothers on "Saturday Night Live," singing "Hey Bartender."
1976: Johnnie Taylor's "Disco Lady" becomes the very first platinum single in the history of the Recording Industry Association of America, selling two million copies.
1970: The first nationwide Earth Day is celebrated in the U.S. as an environmental awareness event celebrated by millions of Americans with marches, educational programs, and rallies. A local Earth Day celebration had previously taken place on March 21, 1970, in San Francisco, Calif.
1969: A month after marrying Yoko Ono, John Lennon legally adds "Ono" as one of his middle names, becoming John Winston Ono Lennon. A brief ceremony marking the name change took place on the roof of the Apple Corps building, made famous three months earlier by The Beatles' "Let It Be" rooftop concert.
1967: Comedian, actress and talk show host Sherri Shepherd, best known as one of the five co-hosts on the daytime talk show "The View," is born in Chicago, Ill. Shepherd has also starred in the sitcoms "Less than Perfect" and "Sherri" and had a recurring role on the sitcoms "Everybody Loves Raymond" and "30 Rock."
1966: The rock song "Wild Thing" by the British band the Troggs is released in the U.S. The song soon shot to the top of the charts in U.S. and held the second spot in the United Kingdom.
1966: Actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan, best known for his roles in the movie "The Watchmen" and in the TV series "Grey's Anatomy," "Supernatural" and "Magic City," is born in Seattle, Wash.
1964: The 1964-1965 New York World's Fair opens for its first season. The fair, held in Flushing, Queens, was one of the largest world's fairs to be held in the United States and is best remembered as a showcase of mid-20th-century American culture and technology, including the nascent Space Age.
1962: The western "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance," starring Jimmy Stewart and John Wayne, and directed by John Ford, premieres in theaters.
1950: Rock musician and singer-songwriter Peter Frampton, best known for such hits as "Breaking All The Rules," "Show Me the Way," "Baby, I Love Your Way," "Do You Feel Like We Do" and "I'm in You," is born in Bromley, Kent, England. Frampton's international breakthrough album was his 1976 live release "Frampton Comes Alive!," which sold more than six million copies in the United States alone.
1947: The Philadelphia Warriors beat the Chicago Stags four games to two to win the first championship of the Basketball Association of America, the forerunner of the NBA.
1946: Filmmaker John Waters, best known for directing movies such as "Mondo Trasho," "Pink Flamingos," "Polyester," "Hairspray" and "Cry-Baby," is born in Baltimore, Md.
1945: After learning that his orders to attack Soviet troops closing in on Berlin had been ignored by SS Gen. Felix Steiner, Adolf Hitler falls into a tearful rage in his underground bunker. He declares that the war is lost, blames his generals and announces that he would stay on in Berlin until the end and then kill himself. He would commit suicide in the bunker eight days later.
1944: Steve Fossett, the businessman and record-setting aviator, sailor and adventurer, is born in Jackson, Tenn. Fossett made his fortune in the financial services industry and was best known for many world records, including becoming the first person to fly solo nonstop around the world in a balloon. On Sept. 3, 2007, Fossett was reported missing after the plane he was flying over the Nevada desert failed to return. His crash site and some remains were discovered in the Sierra Nevada mountain range in California in October 2008.
1937: Actor Jack Nicholson, best known for movies such as "Chinatown," "The Shining," "Batman," "A Few Good Men" and "The Departed," is born in Neptune City, N.J. Nicholson has won Oscars for his roles in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," "As Good as It Gets" and "Terms of Endearment" and has been nominated a total of 12 times, making him the most nominated male actor of all time.
1936: Singer, guitarist and actor Glen Campbell, whose hits include"Gentle on My Mind," "By the Time I Get to Phoenix," "Wichita Lineman," "Galveston" and "Rhinestone Cowboy," is born in Delight, Ark. He's also known for hosting the variety show "The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour" from 1969 to 1972 and appeared in movies such as "True Grit," "Norwood" and "Any Which Way You Can."
1933: Henry Royce, the industrialist who joined with Charles Rolls to found Rolls-Royce Ltd. in 1906, dies at the age of 70 in West Wittering, West Sussex, England. At the onset of World War I, the company turned from automobiles to the production of much-needed reliable engines for aviation. After the war, Rolls-Royce continued both as a manufacturer of luxury automobiles and airplane engines.
1926: Actress Charlotte Rae, best known for playing Edna Garrett on the sitcoms "Diff'rent Strokes" and "The Facts of Life," is born in Milwaukee, Wis.
1923: Model Bettie Page, who became famous in the 1950s for her pin-up photos, is born in Nashville, Tenn. Page was Miss January 1955, one of the earliest Playmates of the Month for Playboy magazine. After years of obscurity, she experienced a resurgence of popularity in the 1980s. She died at age 85 on Dec. 11, 2008.
1923: Television producer Aaron Spelling, who produced such TV shows as "The Mod Squad," "Charlie's Angels," "Beverly Hills, 90210," "7th Heaven" and "Sunset Beach," is born in Dallas, Texas. He died at age 83 on June 23, 2006, from complications of a stroke he suffered five days earlier.
1922: Jazz musician, composer and bandleader Charles Mingus, whose best-known albums include "Pithecanthropus Erectus," "Mingus Ah Um," "Mingus Dynasty" and "The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady," is born in Nogales, Ariz. He died from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis at age 56 on Jan. 5, 1979.
1906: The 1906 Summer Olympics, not now recognized as part of the official Olympic Games, open in Athens, Greece.
1906: Actor Eddie Albert, best known for the sitcom "Green Acres" and his Oscar-nominated roles in "Roman Holiday" and "The Heartbreak Kid," is born Edward Albert Heimberger in Rock Island, Ill. He died from pneumonia at age 99 on May 26, 2005.
1904: Physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, often called the "father of the atomic bomb" for his role in the Manhattan Project, the World War II project that developed the first nuclear weapons, is born in New York City. He died of throat cancer at age 62 on Feb. 18, 1967.
1903: The New York Highlanders, who would soon become known as the New York Yankees, play their first game, losing on the road 3-1 to the Washington Senators.
1889: At noon, thousands rush to claim land in the Oklahoma Land Run of 1889. Within hours the cities of Oklahoma City and Guthrie are formed with populations of at least 10,000. Legal settlers could claim lots up to 160 acres in size and eventually receive the title to the land if they lived on it and improved it.
1899: Vladimir Nabokov, known for the novels "Lolita" and "Pale Fire" and the memoir "Speak, Memory," is born in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
1876: The first game in National League history is played at Philadelphia's Jefferson Street Grounds between the Philadelphia Athletics and the Boston Red Caps, nee Red Stockings, with Boston winning the game 6-5.
1870: Communist revolutionary Vladimir Lenin, one of the leaders of the October Revolution of 1917 that led to the creation of the Soviet Union, is born Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov in Simbirsk, Russia.
1864: The U.S. Congress passes the Coinage Act of 1864, which authorizes the inscription "In God We Trust" on one-cent and two-cent coins.
1836: A day after the Battle of San Jacinto during the Texas Revolution, forces under Texas Gen. Sam Houston capture Mexican Gen. Antonio López de Santa Anna. While captive in Texas, Santa Anna signed a treaty recognizing the independence of Texas in exchange for his life and transport back to Mexico. However, the government in Mexico City declared the treaty null and void and Santa Anna spent the next year in exile in America.
1724: German philosopher Immanuel Kant, whose work made him the central figure of modern philosophy, is born in Königsberg, Prussia.
1616: Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes, the author of "Don Quixote," considered the first modern European novel and regarded among the best works of fiction ever written, dies at age 68 in Madrid, Spain.