1859 - A hot air balloon was used to carry mail for the first time. John Wise left Lafayette, IN for New York City with 100 letters. He had to land after only 27 miles.
1877 - F.P. Cahill became the first person to be killed by "Billy the Kid."
1894 - John Wadsworth of Louisville set a major league record when he gave up 28 base hits in a single game.
1896 - The Klondike gold rush was set off by George Carmack discovering gold on Rabbit Creek in Alaska.
1903 - Joseph Pulitzer donated a million dollars to Columbia University. This started the Pulitzer Prizes in his name.
1915 - Charles F. Kettering patented the electric, automobile self-starter.
1939 - The movie "Wizard of Oz" opened.
1969 - Hurricane Camille hit the Mississippi Gulf Coast killing 248 people.
1973 - Lee Trevino got the first hole in one of his career at the U.S.I. Golf Classic, in Sutton, MA.
1977 - Florists Transworld Delivery (FTD) reported that in one day the number of orders for flowers to be delivered to Graceland had surpassed the number for any other event in the company's history.
1987 - The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 2,700 for the first time.
1992 - Woody Allen admitted to being romantically involved with Soon-Yi Previn. The girl was the adopted daughter of Mia Farrow, Allen's longtime companion.
1993 - Jack Kevorkian was charged in Wayne County, MI with assisting in the suicide of Thomas Hyde. Kevorkian was later acquitted.
1996 - Ross Perot was announced to be the Reform Party's presidential candidate. It was the party's first-ever candidate.
1998 - U.S. President Clinton admitted to having an improper relationship with Monica Lewinsky, a White House intern.
1998 - NationsBank and BankAmerica merge to create the largest U.S. bank.