1840 - English dandy Beau Brummell died in a French lunatic asylum for paupers.
1842 - Ether was used for the first time as an anaesthetic in an operation by American surgeon Dr Crawford Long.
1856 - The Treaty of Paris was signed, ending the Crimean War.
1858 - Hyman Lipman patented the pencil with a rubber on the end.
1867 - The USA bought Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million - oil had not yet been discovered there.
1939 - Detective Comics #27 was released, introducing Batman.
1944 - Allied bombing raid on Nuremberg: 795 aircraft were despatched from the English coast, including 572 Lancasters, 214 Halifaxes and 9 Mosquitos. The bombers met resistance at the coasts of Belgium and the Netherlands from German fighters. In total, 95 bombers were lost, the largest RAF Bomber Command loss of World War II.
1949 - A riot broke out in Austurvöllur square in Reykjavík, when Iceland joined NATO.
1951 - New Yorkers Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were found guilty of spying for the USSR.
1956 - Heartbreak Hotel, the first record by Elvis Presley, was released in the UK.
1964 - Mods and Rockers clashed on Clacton beach.
1974 - Red Rum won his second Grand National.
1979 - Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary Airey Neave was killed by an IRA car bomb as he left the House of Commons car park.
1981 - John Hinckley shot President Reagan in the chest in an assassination attempt.
1994 - Julius Rosenberg of Canada became the youngest recipient of the Medal of Bravery. He had saved his two-year-old sister from a bear by growling at the animal.
1997 - Thirteen-year-old Luke McShane became the youngest ever British International Chess Master.
2002 - The Queen Mother passed away at the age of 101. She had become increasingly frail following a chest infection and died in her sleep at Royal Lodge, Windsor.