1812: Facing what he believed to be superior forces, American Gen. William Hull surrenders Fort Detroit without a fight to the British Army during the War of 1812. The surrender not only costs the United States the village of Detroit, but control over most of the Michigan territory. Hull was later court-martialed and sentenced to be shot, but received a reprieve from President James Madison.
1841: President John Tyler vetoes a bill calling for the re-establishment of the Second Bank of the United States. Enraged Whig Party members rioted outside the White House and burned Tyler in effigy in the most violent demonstration on White House grounds in U.S. history.
1858: President James Buchanan inaugurates the new transatlantic telegraph cable by exchanging greetings with Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. However, a weak signal forced a shutdown of the service a few weeks later.
1862: Athlete and pioneering college coach Amos Alonzo Stagg is born in West Orange, N.J. Stagg played baseball and football at Yale University and went on to coach football, basketball and baseball at the University of Chicago. He compiled a career college football record of 314–199–35 and his football teams of 1905 and 1913 have been recognized as national champions. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach in the charter class of 1951. Stagg also developed basketball as a five-player sport and was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in its first group of inductees in 1959.
1863: The Emancipation Proclamation is signed. It proclaims the freedom of slaves in the 10 states then in rebellion during the Civil War, thus applying to 3.1 million of the 4 million slaves in the U.S. at that time.
1888: John Pemberton, a Confederate veteran and pharmacist best known for inventing Coca-Cola in 1886, dies of cancer at age 57 in Atlanta, Ga.
1888: T. E. Lawrence, the English writer and soldier known as "Lawrence of Arabia," is born in Tremadog, Caernarfonshire, Wales. His nickname was used for the 1962 film based on his World War I activities during the Arab Revolt against Ottoman Turkish rule.
1896: Skookum Jim Mason, George Carmack and Dawson Charlie discover gold in a tributary of the Klondike River in Canada, setting off the Klondike Gold Rush.
1920: Ray Chapman of the Cleveland Indians is hit on the head by a fastball thrown by Carl Mays of the New York Yankees, and dies early the next day. Chapman remains the only MLB player to ever be directly killed by an on-field injury.
1924: Actor Fess Parker, best known for his portrayals of Davy Crockett in the Walt Disney 1955–1956 TV miniseries and as TV's Daniel Boone from 1964 to 1970, is born in Fort Worth, Texas.
1928: Singer Eydie Gormé, best known as a member of the "Steve and Eydie" duo with her husband Steve Lawrence, is born Edith Garmezano in The Bronx, N.Y. The duo's biggest hit was "I Want to Stay Here" and Gormé also had hit singles as a solo artist, including "Blame It on the Bossa Nova," "If He Walked Into My Life," "What Did I Have That I Don't Have?" and "Tonight I'll Say a Prayer." She retired as of 2009 while Lawrence continues to perform as a solo act.
1930: The first color sound cartoon, called "Fiddlesticks," is made by Ub Iwerks.
1930: Actor Robert Culp, best known for the TV series "Trackdown," "I Spy," "The Greatest American Hero" and "Everybody Loves Raymond," is born in Oakland, Calif.
1933: Actress Julie Newmar, best known for playing Catwoman in the 1960s TV show "Batman," is born in Los Angeles.
1946: Actress and singer Lesley Ann Warren, best known for movies like "The Happiest Millionaire," "Victor Victoria," "Clue," "Burglar" and "Secretary," and the TV series "Mission: Impossible" and "In Plain Sight," is born in New York City. Warren earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for "Victor Victoria."
1948: Legendary baseball player Babe Ruth, who helped the New York Yankees to four World Series titles during his career and was among the five first inductees into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1936, dies from cancer in New York City at the age of 53.
1949: Author Margaret Mitchell, best known for writing the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel "Gone with the Wind," dies at age 48 in Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, Ga., five days after being struck by a car while crossing the street with her husband.
1953: Talk show host, singer and actress Kathie Lee Gifford, best known for her 15-year run on the talk show "Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee," is born Kathryn Lee Epstein in Paris, France. Since 2008, she has co-hosted a portion of NBC's "Today" show alongside Hoda Kotb, with whom she's seen here in 2009.
1954: What is widely believed to be the first piña colada is served by its creator, bartender Ramón "Monchito" Marrero Pérez, at the Caribe Hilton's Beachcomber Bar in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
1954: Film director James Cameron, best known for movies like "Aliens," "Terminator," "Titanic" and "Avatar," is born in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada.
1954: Sports Illustrated is published for the first time, with the cover showing Milwaukee Braves star Eddie Mathews at bat and New York Giants catcher Wes Westrum in Milwaukee County Stadium. It was claimed that 250,000 subscriptions had been sold before the first issue came off of the presses.
1956: Actor Bela Lugosi, best known for playing Dracula in the 1931 classic monster movie and his roles in other horror movies such as "Murders in the Rue Morgue," "The Raven" and "Son of Frankenstein," dies of a heart attack at the age of 73 in Los Angeles.
1958: Actress Angela Bassett, an Academy Award nominee for the Tina Turner biopic "What's Love Got to Do with It" who's also known for movies such as "Malcolm X," "Waiting to Exhale" and "How Stella Got Her Groove Back," is born in Harlem, N.Y.
1958: Singer and actress Madonna is born Madonna Louise Ciccone in Bay City, Mich. Her hits include "Like a Virgin," "Into the Groove," "Papa Don't Preach," "Like a Prayer," "Vogue" and "Music."
1960: Joseph Kittinger parachutes from a balloon over New Mexico at 102,800 feet. Kittinger's records for the highest ascent, highest parachute jump, and fastest velocity stood for 52 years, until they were broken in 2012 by Felix Baumgartner.
1960: Actor Timothy Hutton is born in Malibu, Calif. In 1981, he became the youngest actor to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, winning at age 20 for "Ordinary People." He is also known for his roles in the movies "Taps," "The Falcon and the Snowman" and "The Dark Half" and in the TNT series "Leverage" (pictured).
1962: Actor Steve Carell ("The 40-Year-Old Virgin," "The Office," "Crazy, Stupid, Love") is born in Concord, Mass.
1962: Ringo Starr is picked to replace Pete Best as the drummer for the Beatles. Best had been with the group for more than two years. Starr's first performance as a full Beatle would come Aug. 18, 1962, at a Horticultural Society dance at Port Sunlight, England.
1966: The Monkees' first single, "Last Train to Clarksville," is released. The song would go on to top the Billboard Hot 100 on Nov. 5, 1966.
1975: Peter Gabriel quits Genesis. The band's drummer, Phil Collins, would later take over as lead singer after a lengthy search for a replacement.
1977: Singer and actor Elvis Presley, one of the most popular musicians of the 20th century, dies of a heart attack at Graceland in Memphis, Tenn. He was 42. Among his No. 1 singles were "Heartbreak Hotel," "Don't Be Cruel," "Hound Dog," "Love Me Tender," "All Shook Up," "Jailhouse Rock," "Return to Sender" and "Suspicious Minds."
1985: Madonna and actor Sean Penn are married in Malibu, Calif., on the singer's 27th birthday. They would later divorce in 1989.
1987: Northwest Airlines Flight 255, a McDonnell Douglas MD-82, crashes after takeoff in Romulus, Mich., near Detroit, killing 154 of the 155 on board, plus two people on the ground. At the time, Flight 255 was the second deadliest aviation disaster in U.S. history. Pictured is a monument near the crash site.
1989: Actress Amanda Blake, best known for her 19-year stint as the saloon proprietress Miss Kitty Russell on the TV western "Gunsmoke," dies from complications of AIDS at age 60 in Sacramento, Calif.
2003: Idi Amin, the former dictator of Uganda, dies of kidney failure in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
2008: Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres and actress Portia de Rossi are married at their Beverly Hills, Calif., home.
2010: Bobby Thomson, best known for the "Shot Heard 'Round the World," his game-winning three-run home run to give the New York Giants the National League pennant in 1951, dies at age 86 in Savannah, Ga.