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  On This Day
 
On January 4th...

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871 Ethelred of Wessex beat a Danish invasion army at the Battle of Reading.

1357 Earl Louis of Flanders and Duke Wenceslaus of Luxembourg signed a peace treaty.

King Charles I1642 King Charles I, with 400 soldiers, attacked the English parliament.

1698 Most of the Palace of Whitehall in London, the main residence of the English monarch, was destroyed by fire.

1717 Netherlands, England, and France signed the Triple Alliance.

Columbia University1754 Kings College (now Columbia University) was founded.

1780 Businessman Joseph Morgan was born.

Jakob Ludwig Grimm1785 Jakob Ludwig Grimm, collector and publisher of fairy tales, was born.

Louis Braille1809 Louis Braille, developer of the Braille System of writing and reading for the blind, was born.

Samuel Colt1847 Samuel Colt sold his first revolver pistol to the United States.

1863 James Plimpton patented 4-wheeled roller skates.

New York Stock Exchange1865 The New York Stock Exchange opened its first permanent headquarters, at 10-12 Broad Street.

1877 Cornelius Vanderbilt, the richest man in the United States at the time, died.

1884 The Fabian Society was founded in London.

1885 Dr. W. W. Grant performed the world's first appendectomy, on 22-year-old Mary Gartside.

1887 Thomas Stevens became the first person to bicycle around the world (San Francisco to San Francisco).

1896 Utah was admitted as the 45th state.

Thomas Edison1903 Thomas Edison electrocuted an elephant named Topsy.

1904 The Supreme Court ruled that Puerto Ricans cannot be denied admission into the United States.

1912 The Scout Association was incorporated throughout the British Commonwealth by Royal Charter.

1920 The National Negro Baseball League was organized.

1930 NFL coach Don Shula was born.

1935 Fort Jefferson National Monument was established.
1935 Boxer Floyd Patterson was born.

1936 Billboard magazine published its first "Hit Parade."

1937 Actress Dyan Cannon was born.

1947 Emilio G. Segrč and Carlo Perrier announced technetium, the first artificially synthesized chemical element.

Union of Burma1948 The Union of Burma was established.

1957 Singer Patty Loveless was born.

1960 The European Free Trade Association was created.
1960 Michael Stipe, lead singer of R.E.M., was born.
Albert Camus1960 Author Albert Camus died.

1965 Poet T.S. Eliot died.

1981 British police arrested Peter Sutcliffe, the "Yorkshire Ripper."

1984 "Night Court" premiered on NBC-TV.

1987 An Amtrak passenger train collided with a Conrail freight train near Baltimore, Maryland, killing 16 and injuring more than 170 -- the worst accident in Amtrak history to that time.

2001 Band leader Les Brown died.

2010 The Burj Khalifa in Dubai was officially opened as the world's tallest building.

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This page was last updated on December 18, 2015.

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