Shimla, Jan

This Day in History


American writer Ursula K. Le Guin, who was best known for tales of science fiction and fantasy imbued with concern for character development and language, died at the age of 88.


Joe Paterno—who, as head coach at Penn State (1966–2011), was one of the most successful coaches in the history of collegiate gridiron football but whose final season was overshadowed by a sex-abuse scandal involving a former assistant coach—died at the age of 85.


Struggling with ratings, Conan O’Brien left The Tonight Show after hosting his last episode of the late-night television program.


Evo Morales, a member of the Aymara indigenous group, was sworn in as president of Bolivia, becoming the first Indian to hold the office.


One of the most notorious domestic terrorists in U.S. history, Theodore Kaczynski, the so-called Unabomber, who killed three people and injured 22 in 16 attacks between 1979 and 1995, was sentenced to four terms of life in prison without parole.


Serving as a payload specialist aboard the Discovery space shuttle, Roberta Bondar became the first Canadian woman and the first neurologist to travel into space.


All Japanese resistance in Papua, on the island of New Guinea, site of an important Allied base at Port Moresby in World War II, ceased.


American singer and songwriter Sam Cooke, one of the most influential Black vocalists of the post-World War II era, was born in Clarksdale, Mississippi.


On what was later known as Bloody Sunday, Russian workers marching on St. Petersburg were fired on by Russian troops.


Influential ballet choreographer George Balanchine was born in St. Petersburg.


Queen Victoria—who reigned for more than 60 years, during which time the British Empire reached the apex of its power—died at age 81.


Sergei Eisenstein, a Russian film director and theorist known for such classics as Potemkin (1925), Alexander Nevsky (1938), and Ivan the Terrible (released in two parts, 1944 and 1958), was born.


Swedish playwright, novelist, and short-story writer August Strindberg, who combined psychology and Naturalism in a new kind of European drama that evolved into Expressionist drama, was born.


British statesman and philosopher Francis Bacon was born in York House, London.


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