[The opulent, neo-Classical Groote Schuur Hospital adorns the lower slopes of Devil's Peak, near Cape Town, in South Africa; a teaching hospital founded in 1938, its name - meaning 'Great Barn' - hearkens back to the Groote Schuur estate founded by Dutch settlers to the region in the 17th Century.]
1154 - Pope Anastasius IV died, clearing the way for the election of his successor, Adrian IV - who remains to this day the only Englishman to have served as Bishop of Rome.
1775 - The USS Alfred became the first vessel to fly the Grand Union Flag (the precursor to the Stars and Stripes) when it was hoisted by John Paul Jones in the presence of the ship's captain, Dudley Saltonstall.
1800 - During the War of the Second Coalition, at the Battle of Hohenlinden, French General Jean Victor Marie Moreau decisively defeated Austria's Archduke John (son of the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold II) near Munich; coupled with First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte's earlier victory at Marengo, the rout effectively forced Austria to sign an armistice and end the war.
1818 - Illinois became the 21st US state.
1854 - In what is claimed by many to be the birth of Australian democracy, more than 20 gold miners at Ballarat were killed by state troopers at Eureka Stockade in an uprising over mining licences.
1887 - Edmund E. Sheppard founded Saturday Night magazine in Toronto.
1904 - The Jovian moon Himalia was discovered by Charles Dillon Perrine at California's Lick Observatory.
1917 - The Quebec Bridge - connecting Lévis on the south shore of the Saint Lawrence River to Quebec City on the north - finally opened to traffic, after nearly 20 years of planning and construction.
1965 - An all-white jury in Alabama convicted three Ku Klux Klansmen - Collie Wilkins, William Eaton, and Eugene Thomas - for the murder of white civil rights activist Viola Liuzzo. In the car with the men at the time of their drive-by shooting had been FBI informant Gary Rowe, whose testimony was crucial in the implication of the others.
1967 - Louis Washkansky became the first recipient of a heart transplant; his team of surgeons at Cape Town's Groote Schuur Hospital was led by the legendary Dr. Christiaan Barnard.
1970 - British trade commissioner James Cross was released by the FLQ after 60 days in captivity; his abduction was a motivating factor in Canada's October Crisis.
1971 - India invaded East Pakistan, and assisted in the liberation of Bangladesh from West Pakistan, a feat which took only 13 days.
1973 - Pioneer 10 sent back close-up pictures of the planet Jupiter.
1979 - Eleven fans were killed in a stampede for tickets to see The Who at Cincinnatti's Riverfront Coliseum; the event was later incorporated into an episode of WKRP in Cincinnati.
1984 - A pesticide leak from a Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, India, killed 3800 and injured untold numbers of others; in all 43 tonnes of the heavier-than-air gas mixture MIC were spilled.
1988 - Britain's Junior Health Minister, Edwina Currie, shot her damn fool mouth off about salmonella being rife in the country's egg supply - an indiscretion which would later force her resignation from Cabinet.
1989 - In a meeting off the coast of Malta, US President George H. W. Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev released statements indicating that the Cold War between their nations was coming to an end; their statements over-excited some leading commentators from both nations, who exaggerated their wording and independently declared the Cold War over.
1992 - The Greek oil tanker Aegean Sea, carrying 80,000 tonnes of crude oil, ran aground in a storm off Spain's La Coruña province, spilling much of its cargo.
2007 - Kevin Rudd was sworn in as the Commonwealth of Australia's 26th Prime Minister since 1900.
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