2002 Iraq War The "Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq" is signed into law by President Bush authorizing what was soon to become the Iraq War.
1997 Lost in Space The fictional Jupiter II is launched from Alpha Control, as per the TV show.
1992 Topless woman found in a Where's Waldo puzzle The popular children's puzzle was reported to show a topless female sunbather baring her breasts.
1992 John Haggin marries Roxanne Pulitzer This caused his mother to cut him off from a $200,000,000 fortune. They filed for divorce December 2; that's about $4,250,000 a day.
1992 Genetically-Altered Food The "Flavr Savr" tomato becomes the first genetically-altered plant approved by the USDA for growing and transport without a special permit. It was approved for sale in 1994.
1991 Luby's Cafeteria massacre George Hennard drives his pick-up truck into the Killeen, Texas restaurant and opens fire with semi-automatic weapons killing 23 people.
1987 Jessica McClure The 18-month-old baby is rescued from a 22-foot-deep shaft she had fallen into 58½ hours earlier.
1985 Penn & Teller The magicians "magically" produce 500 live cockroaches and let them loose on The David Letterman Show.
1978 First Polish pope Pope John Paul II is elected.
1955 Ann Landers The column gets a new writer - Esther Pauline Friedman. Her twin sister writes the Dear Abby column.
1941 World War II Tojo Hideki becomes prime minister of Japan. He was executed in 1948 for war crimes committed during the war.
1928 Frosted light bulbs A patent is awarded for the first practical electric light bulb frosted on the inside.
1925 Evolution Textbooks containing Darwin's theory of evolution are banned by the Texas State Text Book Board.
1920 First license for a commercial radio station is applied for, KDKA in Pittsburgh.
1859 Civil War John Brown captures the U.S. arsenal near Harper's Ferry. Two of his sons were killed in the battle and he was later captured by Col. Robert E. Lee and hanged.
1701 Yale University A charter is granted for a collegiate school in New Haven, Connecticut. It later became Yale University.
1969 Adam Stephens fictional character on Bewitched.
1958 Tim Robbins American actor. Film: Howard the Duck (1986) and Bull Durham (1988).
1946 Suzanne Somers (Suzanne Mahoney), American actress. TV: Three's Company (Chrissy).
1943 C.F. "Fred" Turner Canadian singer, with Bachman-Turner Overdrive. Music: Takin' Care of Business (1974) and You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet (1974, #1).
1940 Barry Corbin American actor. TV: Northern Exposure (former astronaut Maurice).
1925 Angela Lansbury English Tony-winning actress. TV: Murder She Wrote (Jessica Fletcher).
1888 Eugene Gladstone O'Neill d. 1953 American Nobel-Pulitzer-winning playwright, works include The Iceman Cometh (1946).
1854 Oscar Wilde d. 1900 Irish-born British author. He was imprisoned (1895-97) for his homosexuality. His last words were, "Either that wallpaper goes, or I do." Writings: The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891), The Importance of Being Earnest (1895), and The Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898, which described his prison experience).
1797 Seventh Earl of Cardigan d. 1868 (James Thomas Brudenell), English soldier. He led the charge of the Light Brigade (1854) and for whom cardigan sweaters are named.
1758 Noah Webster d. 1843 American lexicographer, schoolmaster to America. Works: Blue-Backed Speller (1783) and An American Dictionary of the English Language (1828).
2010 Barbara Billingsley b. 1915 (Barbara Lillian Combes), American actress. TV: Leave It to Beaver (1957-63, June Cleaver). Film: Airplane! (1980, the elderly passenger who spoke jive).
1998 Jonathan Bruce Postel b. 1943 American computer scientist, Internet pioneer, sometimes referred to as the "God of the Internet." He was responsible for assigning addresses to domain names and for editing RFCs (Request for Comments). Also known for Postel's Law: "Be conservative in what you do, be liberal in what you accept from others."
1997 James A. Michener b. 1907 American Pulitzer-winning author. Writings: Tales of the South Pacific (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1948), and The Bridges at Toko-ri (1953).
1992 Shirley Booth b. 1907 (Thelma Booth Ford), American Oscar, Tony and Emmy-winning actress, Hazel Burke of Hazel.
1989 Cornel Wilde b. 1915 (Cornelius Wilde), American actor. Film: A Song to Remember (1945, Chopin). He quit the 1936 U.S. Olympic fencing team to pursue his acting career.
1793 Marie Antoinette b. 1755 Queen of France, disliked by her people for her extravagances and politics, she was guillotined for treason and attempting to incite a civil war.
1591 Gregory XIV b. ???? religious leader, 229th Pope (1590-91).