History of the Day for:
- 1742: Handel's "Messiah" was first performed publicly, in Dublin, Ireland.
- 1743: Thomas Jefferson was born in Virginia.
- 1870: The Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded in New York.
- 1899: Alfred M. Butts, the inventor of Scrabble, was born.
- 1906: Author/critic/playwright Samuel Beckett ("Waiting for Godot") was born.
- 1940: The first of the "Road" movies with Bob Hope, Big Crosby and Dorothy Lamour, "The Road to Singapore," opened in New York City.
- 1943: The Jefferson Memorial is dedicated in Washington, D.C., on the 200th anniversary of Thomas Jefferson's birth.
- 1944: Diplomatic relations between New Zealand and the Soviet Union are established.
- 1943: President Roosevelt dedicated the Jefferson Memorial.
- 1954: Hank Aaron made his major-league baseball debut for the Milwaukee Braves.
- 1963: Pete Rose got his first major-league hit for the Cincinnati Reds.
- 1964: Sidney Poitier became the first black actor to win a Best Actor Oscar. He earned the honor for "Lilies of the Field."
- 1970: "Apollo 13," four-fifths of the way to the moon, was crippled when a tank containing liquid oxygen burst.
- 1981: Janet Cook won a Pulitzer Prize for feature writing but later said her prize-winning story in "The Washington Post" was a fake.
- 1984: The Montreal Expos welcomed Pete Rose to the team as Rose registered his 4,000th career hit.
- 1985: "The Grand Ole Opry" debuted on television.
- 1992: The Great Chicago Flood took place.
- 1997: Tiger Woods became the youngest person to win the Masters Tournament and the first player of partly African heritage to claim a major golf title.