This Day In History

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  • Fleetwood Mac reunites to play “Don’t Stop” at Bill Clinton’s first inaugural ball

    On January 19, 1993, the band Fleetwood Mac reunites to perform at the recently elected U.S. President Bill Clinton’s first inaugural gala. Fleetwood Mac had faced much intra-band squabbling since their 1970s heyday, why they released one of the biggest albums of all time—Rumours—and a string of ...
  • Charles Wilkes claims portion of Antarctica for U.S.

    During an exploring expedition, Captain Charles Wilkes sights the coast of eastern Antarctica and claims it for the United States. Wilkes’ group had set out in 1838, sailing around South America to the South Pacific and then to Antarctica, where they explored a 1,500-mile stretch of the eastern ...
  • Indira Gandhi becomes Indian prime minister

    Following the death of Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, Indira Gandhi becomes head of the Congress Party and thus prime minister of India. She was India’s first female head of government and by the time of her assassination in 1984 was one of its most controversial. Gandhi was the ...
  • First air raid on Britain

    During World War I, Britain suffers its first casualties from an air attack when two German zeppelins drop bombs on Great Yarmouth and King’s Lynn on the eastern coast of England. The zeppelin, a motor-driven rigid airship, was developed by German inventor Ferdinand Graf von Zeppelin in 1900. ...
  • Edgar Allan Poe is born

    On January 19, 1809, poet, author and literary critic Edgar Allan Poe is born in Boston, Massachusetts. By the time he was three years old, both of Poe’s parents had died, leaving him in the care of his godfather, John Allan, a wealthy tobacco merchant. After attending school in England, Poe ...
  • President Ford pardons Tokyo Rose

    President Gerald R. Ford pardons Tokyo Rose. Although the nickname originally referred to several Japanese women who broadcast Axis propaganda over the radio to Allied troops during World War II, it eventually became synonymous with a Japanese-American woman named Iva Toguri. On the orders of the ...
  • Production begins on “Toy Story”

    On January 19, 1993, production begins on Toy Story, the first full-length feature film created by the pioneering Pixar Animation Studios. Originally a branch of the filmmaker George Lucas’s visual effects company, Industrial Light and Magic (ILM), Pixar first put itself on the map with special ...
  • Man charged in California cyberstalking case

    A mere three weeks after California passed a law against cyberstalking, Gary Dellapenta is charged with using the Internet to solicit the rape of a woman who had rejected his advances. Dellapenta terrorized a North Hollywood woman by placing ads in her name that claimed she had rape fantasies and ...
  • Robert E. Lee born

    Confederate General Robert Edward Lee is born in Westmoreland County, Virginia. Lee commanded the Army of Northern Virginia during most of the Civil War and his brilliant battlefield leadership earned him a reputation as one of the greatest military leaders in history as he consistently defeated ...
  • First McDonald’s drive-through opens in Beijing

    On January 19, 2007, Beijing, China, the capital city of the planet’s most populous nation, gets its first drive-through McDonald’s restaurant. The opening ceremony for the new two-story fast-food eatery, located next to a gas station, included traditional Chinese lion dancers and a Chinese Ronald ...