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On May 11th...
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1310 Fifty-four members of the Knights Templar were burned at the stake in France for being heretics.
1686 Physicist Otto von Guericke died.
1778 British statesman William Pitt died.
1792 Robert Gray discovered the mouth of the Columbia River.
1812 British Prime Minister Spencer Perceval was assassinated.
1814 The Battle of Plattsburgh was fought.
1816 The American Bible Society was formed.
1831 Author John Trumbull died.
1854 Ottmar Mergenthaler, Linotype inventor, was born.
1858 Minnesota was admitted as the 32nd state.
1871 Astronomer John Herschel died.
1888 Composer Irving Berlin was born.
1894 Dancer/choreographer Martha Graham was born.
1904 Painter Salvador Dali was born.
1906 Jackie Cochran, the first woman to break the sound barrier, was born.
1910 Glacier National Park was created.
1911 Actor Phil Silvers was born.
1912 Comedian Foster Brooks was born.
Actor Denver Pyle was born.
1924 Mercedes-Benz was formed by Gottlieb Daimler and Karl Benz.
Charles Lindbergh completed a transcontinental flight from San
Diego to New York City in record time.
1933 Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam, was born.
1934 Senegalese politician Blaise Diagne died.
1946 Robert Jarvik, co-inventor of the artificial heart, was born.
1937 The brand name SPAM was registered.
1940 The New York World's Fair opened for a second season.
1943 The U.S. 7th Division landed on Attu, in the Aleutian Islands.
1949 The Kingdom of Siam renamed itself Thailand.
1951 Jay Forrester patented computer core memory.
1954 Russell Stover, co-founder of Russell Stover Candies, died.
1959 Martha Quinn, one of the original MTV veejays, was born.
first contraceptive pill went on the market.
1965 Ellis Island was added to Statue of Liberty National Monument.
1969 The Monty Python comedy troupe was formed.
1976 ABC-TV aired the final new episode of "Marcus Welby, MD."
1978 Margaret A. Brewer became the first female General in the U.S. Marine Corps.
1979 Musician Lester Flatt died.
1981 Singer Bob Marley died.
1985 "Dick Tracy" creator Chester Gould died.
1987 The first heart-lung transplant took place in Baltimore, Maryland.
2001 Author Douglas Adams died.
2006 Boxer Floyd Patterson died.
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This page was last updated on May 11, 2017.