[Despite the initial controversy surrounding the Vietnam Veterans Memorial it has proven so popular since its opening that it has been expanded; now, in addition to its iconic wall, the site includes the Three Soldiers statue and the Vietnam Women's Memorial, all of which are intended to help assuage the deep wounds caused to the American psyche by that unpopular war.]
1002 - As recounted in the writings of John of Wallingford, England's King Ethelred the Unready ordered the killing of all Danes in England, which is known today as the St. Brice's Day massacre; among those killed was Gunhilde, sister of Denmark's King Sweyn I, who invaded England the following year in reprisal.
1775 - Patriot revolutionary forces under Colonel Ethan Allen attacked Montreal, which was defended by British General Guy Carleton; Allen and his troops were disorganized and soundly defeated... However, US Brigadier General Richard Montgomery's force later entered Montreal unopposed after Carleton had withdrawn to Quebec City.
1851 - The Denny Party arrived at Alki Point aboard the schooner Exact; they later claimed to be the first settlers in what would become Seattle, Washington, despite the presence of Duwamish Indians and David Swinson 'Doc' Maynard, who were already living there.
1887 - Protesters demanding the release of imprisoned MP William O'Brien clashed with London's Metropolitan Police near Trafalgar Square on what came to be called Bloody Sunday.
1901 - The Caister Lifeboat Disaster claimed the lives of nine life-savers with the RNLI life-boat Beauchamp off of England's Norfolk coast.
1927 - The Holland Tunnel opened to traffic as the first vehicular tunnel linking New York City to New Jersey beneath the Hudson River.
1941 - The Royal Navy's aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal was torpedoed by the Kriegsmarine's U-81, resulting in the death of Able Seaman Edward Mitchell; the rest of the crew was evacuated to the nearby HMS Legion before the eventual sinking of the Ark Royal the following day...
1950 - The President of Venezuela, General Carlos Delgado Chalbaud, was assassinated in Caracas.
1956 - The US Supreme Court declared Alabama and Montgomery laws requiring segregated buses illegal; although this should have ended the Montgomery Bus Boycott then and there, the buses wouldn't be fully integrated until December.
1965 - The SS Yarmouth Castle caught fire and sank 60 miles off Nassau with the loss of 90 lives.
1971 - NASA's Mariner 9 became the first spacecraft to orbit another planet successfully when it entered its planned trajectory around Mars.
1982 - The Vietnam Veterans Memorial - located in Washington DC's Constitution Gardens - was dedicated after a march to its site by thousands of Vietnam War veterans; the design, by Maya Lin, was controversial at first, but it is now one of the most-visited of that city's monuments.
1985 - The volcano Nevado del Ruiz erupted and melted a glacier, causing a lahar (or volcanic mudslide) that buried the Colombian town of Armero, killing approximately 23,000 people.
1988 - Mulugeta Seraw - an Ethiopian-born law student living in Portland, Oregon - was beaten to death by members of the neo-Nazi group East Side White Pride.
1990 - David Gray shot and killed 13 people over two days in the New Zealand resort town of Aramoana, in what became known as the Aramoana Massacre; it remains that country's deadliest shooting spree.
1994 - Voters in Sweden decided to join the European Union in a referendum.
2000 - Philippine House Speaker Manuel B. Villar, Jr. passed articles of impeachment against President Joseph Estrada on charges of corruption and plunder, charges which would ultimately fail to unseat him.
2002 - The oil tanker Prestige sank off the Galician coast, spilling 20 million gallons and soiling more than 1,000 beaches in northern Spain and southern France.
2007 - An explosion hit the south wing of the House of Representatives of the Philippines in Quezon City, killing four people, including Congressman Wahab Akbar, and wounding six; to blame was the militant Islamist group Abu Sayyaf.
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