2012: New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez hits the 23rd grand slam of his career, tying a mark originally set on Aug. 20, 1938, by fellow Yankees slugger Lou Gehrig.
2012: Henry Hill, a former member of the Lucchese family of mobsters and the man immortalized by Martin Scorsese's film "Goodfellas," dies at age 69 in Los Angeles, California, of complications from longtime heart problems. Hill, played by Ray Liotta in the movie, turned FBI informant in 1980 and entered into the U.S. Marshals' Witness Protection Program. He lived in relative obscurity until the film's success drew him out of hiding. Later in life, Hill became somewhat of a media magnet, appearing frequently in mafia documentaries and as a guest on "The Howard Stern Show."
2009: At the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival, the Beastie Boys play together for the last time, as Adam "MCA" Yauch (right) would be diagnosed with cancer of the parotid salivary gland about a month later. Yauch would die from the cancer on May 4, 2012.
2009: The switch from analog TV transmission to digital is completed in the United States.
2003: Actor Gregory Peck, best known for his Academy Award-winning role in "To Kill a Mockingbird," dies of bronchopneumonia at the age of 87 in Los Angeles, California. Peck, who was nominated for another four Oscars, also starred in movies such as "The Yearling," "Gentleman's Agreement," "Twelve O'Clock High," "Roman Holiday," "Moby Dick," "The Guns of Navarone" and "How the West Was Won."
2002: American fashion designer Bill Blass, who grew his company Bill Blass Limited into a $700-million-a-year business, dies of throat cancer at the age of 79 in New Preston, Connecticut.
1997: Interleague play begins in baseball with the Texas Rangers hosting the San Francisco Giants, ending a 126-year tradition of separating the National League and American League until the World Series.
1994: Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend, Ronald Goldman, are killed outside her Los Angeles home. Simpson's ex-husband, retired football star O.J. Simpson, was later acquitted of the killings in a high-profile murder trial, but was held liable in wrongful death civil suit.
1994: The Boeing 777, the world's largest twinjet, makes its first flight.
1991: Boris Yeltsin is elected as the first president of the Russian republic.
1987: At the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany, U.S. President Ronald Reagan publicly challenges Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall, using the phrase that would become famous: "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall."
1981: The fantasy-adventure film "Raiders of the Lost Ark," directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Harrison Ford as archaeologist Indiana Jones, premieres in theaters. The movie became the year's top-grossing film and remains one of the highest-grossing films ever made. It earned nine Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture, winning four (Best Art Direction, Best Film Editing, Best Sound and Best Visual Effects) and spawned three sequels.
1981: Major League Baseball players begin a strike that would last two months and force the cancellation of a total of 713 games in the middle of the season. The two sides reached an agreement on July 31 and play resumed on Aug. 9 with the All-Star Game, with regular season play resuming one day later.
1979: Singer-songwriter, pianist and producer Robyn, best known for songs such as "Do You Know (What It Takes)," "Show Me Love" and "Dancing on My Own," is born Robin Miriam Carlsson in Stockholm, Sweden.
1978: David Berkowitz, New York City's "Son of Sam" killer, is sentenced to 365 years in prison for six killings.
1974: Actor Jason Mewes, best known for playing Jay, the vocal half of the duo Jay and Silent Bob, in longtime friend Kevin Smith's films, is born in Highlands, New Jersey. Mewes has played Jay in the films "Clerks," "Mallrats," "Chasing Amy," "Dogma," "Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back" and "Clerks II."
1972: The pornographic film "Deep Throat" premieres at the World Theater in New York City. The movie, starring Linda Lovelace (whose real name was Linda Susan Boreman), 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.
1970: The Kinks' single "Lola" is released in the United Kingdom. It would be released on June 28 in the United States. It would reach No. 2 on the U.K. charts and No. 9 in the U.S.
1968: The horror movie "Rosemary's Baby" premieres in theaters. The film, directed by Roman Polanski and starring Mia Farrow as a young woman who fears the baby she's carrying is the son of Satan, would prove to be an enormous commercial success, earning more than $33 million in the United States alone. The movie earned two Academy Award nominations, with Ruth Gordon winning Best Supporting Actress for her role.
1967: The Supreme Court of the United States in Loving v. Virginia declares all U.S. state laws that prohibit interracial marriage to be unconstitutional.
1967: The Soviet probe Venera 4 is launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. In October 1967 it would reach Venus, becoming the first space probe to enter another planet's atmosphere and successfully return data.
1965: The Beatles receive their MBE (Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) awards.
1964: Anti-apartheid activist and ANC leader Nelson Mandela is sentenced to life in prison for sabotage and conspiracy to overthrow the government in South Africa. Mandela served nearly 27 years before being released in 1990.
1963: Civil rights leader Medgar Evers is murdered in front of his home in Jackson, Mississippi, by Ku Klux Klan member Byron De La Beckwith. In 1994, 30 years after the two previous trials had failed to reach a verdict, De La Beckwith was brought to trial based on new evidence, convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
1963: The drama "Cleopatra," starring Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton and Rex Harrison, and directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, premieres in New York City. The movie was one of the most expensive ever made, at a budget of $44 million, but became the highest grossing film of 1963, earning $57.7 million at the box office. It was also nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture, winning for Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design and Best Visual Effects.
1957: Jazz musician, composer and bandleader Jimmy Dorsey, who composed the jazz and pop standards "I'm Glad There Is You (In This World of Ordinary People)" and "It's the Dreamer In Me," dies of throat and lung cancer at the age of 53 in New York City. Dorsey had 11 No. 1 hits with his orchestra in the 1930s and the 1940s. He also had two more No. 1 hits in 1935 with his brother Tommy Dorsey as the Dorsey Brothers Orchestra, "Lullaby of Broadway" and "Chasing Shadows."
1957: Actor Timothy Busfield, best known for his television work in "Thirtysomething" and "The West Wing," is born in Lansing, Michigan.
1954: Pope Pius XII canonises Dominic Savio, who was 14 years old at the time of his death in March 1857, as a saint, making him the youngest non-martyr saint in the Roman Catholic Church. Savio had been studying to be a priest when he became ill and was considered eligible sainthood on the basis of his having displayed "heroic virtue" in his everyday life.
1942: Anne Frank receives a diary for her 13th birthday.
1941: Sportscaster Marv Albert, a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame, is born Marvin Philip Aufrichtig in Brooklyn, New York. Albert has called the play-by-play of six Super Bowls, six NBA Finals, seven Stanley Cup Finals and the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in his career.
1941: Pianist, bandleader, composer Armando "Chick" Corea, who as a member of Miles Davis' band in the 1960s participated in the birth of the electric jazz fusion movement, is born in Chelsea, Massachusetts. Corea has won 20 Grammys and his 1968 album "Now He Sings, Now He Sobs" was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame.
1941: Singer-songwriter Reg Presley, best known as the lead singer with the 1960s rock 'n' roll band The Troggs, is born Reginald Maurice Ball in Andover, Hampshire, England. The Troggs' best known songs include "Wild Thing," "With a Girl Like You" and "Love is All Around," the last two of which were written by Presley. He died at age 71 on Feb. 4, 2013, from lung cancer and a series of strokes.
1939: The Baseball Hall of Fame is dedicated in Cooperstown, New York. Roughly 25 players were inducted when the Hall of Fame opened, including the inaugural class of 1936, which featured Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson and Walter Johnson. Here, some of those players are seen gathered for the hall's opening. Back row: Wagner, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Tris Speaker, Nap Lajoie, George Sisler and Johnson. Seated: Eddie Collins, Ruth, Connie Mack and Cy Young.
1930: Actor and singer Jim Nabors, best known for playing Gomer Pyle in the sitcom "The Andy Griffith Show" and its spin-off "Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.," is born in Sylacauga, Alabama.
1929: Anne Frank, the Holocaust victim who became famous posthumously after her diary was published, is born in Frankfurt am Main, Weimar Germany. Her diary documented her experiences hiding with her family in concealed rooms during the German occupation of the Netherlands in World War II. After two years in hiding, the group was betrayed, arrested and transported to concentration camps, where Frank, her mother and her sister all died.
1924: George H. W. Bush, the 41st president of the United States from 1989 to 1993, is born in Milton, Massachusetts. Bush also served as vice president under President Ronald Reagan from 1981 to 1989.
1928: Singer-songwriter and actor Vic Damone, best known for singing hit songs like "I Have But One Heart," "You Do," "You're Breaking My Heart," "My Heart Cries For You" and "On the Street Where You Live," is born Vito Rocco Farinola in Brooklyn, New York.
1928: Composer and songwriter Richard Morton Sherman, who specialized in musical films with his brother Robert B. Sherman, is born in New York City. He's seen here (center) with his brother receiving the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor bestowed upon artists by the United States government, from U.S. President George W. Bush. Some of the Sherman Brothers' best known songs were incorporated into movies such as "Mary Poppins," "The Jungle Book," "The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh," "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" and "Charlotte's Web" and the theme park song of "It's a Small World (After All)." The brothers won an Oscar for Best Original Song for "Chim Chim Cher-ee" from "Mary Poppins" and another Oscar for the film's score, which also earned them a Grammy Award. They were nominated for seven more Oscars during their career along with five Golden Globe nominations and two more Grammy nominations.
1899: The ninth deadliest tornado in U.S. history kills 117 people and injures around 200 in New Richmond, Wisconsin.
1897: The Swiss Army Knife is patented as the The Officer's and Sports Knife by Karl Elsener.
1880: Lee Richmond of the Worcester Ruby Legs pitches the first perfect game in baseball history, beating the Cleveland Blues 1-0 in Worcester, Massachusetts. Pictured is the scorecard from the game.
1775: British Gen. Thomas Gage declares martial law in Massachusetts during the American Revolutionary War. The British offered a pardon to all colonists who laid down their arms with the exception of Samuel Adams and John Hancock who, if captured, were to be hanged.
1665: After the Dutch pull out, New Amsterdam is reincorporated under English law as New York City, named after the Duke of York.