1771 - Scottish novelist and doctor Tobias George Smollett died in Italy aged 50. His last words were: ‘All is well, my dear’.
1787 - The first signatures were put on the American Constitution.
1872 - Phillip W Pratt patented the sprinkler system.
1900 - The Commonwealth of Australia was proclaimed.
1908 - Lieutenant Selfridge was killed on a test flight with Orville Wright. He was the first passenger to die in an air crash.
1917 - The German government appealed to boys under the age of 15 to volunteer for the army.
1931 - The first long-playing record was demonstrated in New York by RCA-Victor; the venture failed due to the high price of the record players.
1939 - Poland was invaded by the USSR.
1941 - The government ordered potatoes to be sold at 1d, so people would eat more of them.
1954 - Boxer Rocky Marciano won his 47th consecutive victory in New York, beating Ezzard Charles.
1957 - Malaysia joined the United Nations.
1971 - A fleet of 100 fishing boats sailed up the River Thames in protest at Britain joining the EEC.
1976 - The first female cadets were admitted to Dartmouth Naval College.
1976 - The first Space Shuttle, Enterprise, was unveiled by NASA.
1978 - Muhammed Ali beat Leon Spinks to win the World Heavyweight Championship for a record third time.
1980 After weeks of strikes at the Lenin Shipyard in Gdańsk, Poland, the nationwide independent trade union Solidarity was established.
1983 - Vanessa Williams became the first black Miss America.
1985 - Designer Laura Ashley died, aged 60.
1989 - The Sunday Correspondent newspaper made its debut.
1998 - Dennis the Menace’s little sister was introduced to ‘The Beano’.
2006 – Fourpeaked Mountain in Alaska erupted, marking the first eruption for the long-dormant volcano in at least 10,000 years.