On This Day in History May 16

May 16 – Events:

  • 1204 – Baldwin IX, Count of Flanders is crowned first Emperor of the Latin Empire.
  • 1527 – The Florentines drive out the Medici for a second time and Florence re-establishes a republic.
  • 1532 – Sir Thomas More resigns as Lord Chancellor of England.
  • 1568 – Mary Queen of Scots flees to England.
  • 1770 – 14-year old Marie Antoinette marries 15-year-old Louis-Auguste who later becomes king of France.
  • 1771 – The Battle of Alamance, a pre-American Revolutionary War battle between local militia and a group of rebels called “The Regulators” occurs in present-day Alamance County, North Carolina.
  • 1777 – Lachlan McIntosh and Button Gwinnett shoot each other during a duel near Savannah, Georgia. Gwinnett, a signer of the United States Declaration of Independence, dies three days later.
  • 1811 – Peninsular War – Allies (Spain, Portugal & Britain) defeat French at the Battle of Albuera.
  • 1822 – Greek War of Independence: The Turks capture the Greek town of Souli.
  • 1836 – Edgar Allan Poe marries his 13-year-old cousin Virginia.
  • 1843 – The first major wagon train heading for the Northwest sets out with one thousand pioneers from Elm Grove, Missouri on the Oregon Trail.
  • 1866 – The U.S. Congress eliminates the half dime coin and replaces it with the five cent piece, or nickel.
  • 1866 – Charles Elmer Hires invents root beer.
  • 1868 – President Andrew Johnson is acquitted during his impeachment trial, by one vote in the United States Senate.
  • 1874 – A flood on the Mill River in Massachusetts destroyed much of four villages and killed 139 people.
  • 1877 – May 16, 1877 political crisis in France.
  • 1910 – The U.S. Congress authorizes the creation of the United States Bureau of Mines.
  • 1914 – The first ever Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup final is played. Brooklyn Field Club beat Brooklyn Celtic 2-1.
  • 1918 – The Sedition Act of 1918 is passed by the U.S. Congress, making criticism of the government a jailable offense.
  • 1919 – US Navy Naval Curtiss aircraft NC-4 commanded by Albert Cushing Read leaves Trepassey, Newfoundland, for Lisbon via the Azores on the first transatlantic flight.
  • 1920 – In Rome, Pope Benedict XV canonizes Joan of Arc as a saint.
  • 1929 – In Hollywood, California, the first Academy Awards are handed out.
  • 1943 – Holocaust: The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising ends.
  • 1948 – Chaim Weizmann is elected as the first President of Israel.
  • 1951 – The first regularly-scheduled transatlantic flights begin between New York and London, operated by El Al Israel Airlines.
  • 1960 – Nikita Khrushchev demands an apology from US President Dwight D. Eisenhower for U-2 spy plane flights over the Soviet Union thus ending a Big Four summit in Paris.
  • 1960 – Theodore Maiman operates the first optical laser, at Hughes Research Laboratories in Malibu, California.
  • 1965 – Campbell Soup Company introduces SpaghettiOs under its Franco-American brand.
  • 1966 – The Communist Party of China issued the ‘May 16 Notice’, marking the beginning of the Cultural Revolution.
  • 1967 – The city Jerusalem is taken over by the nation of Israel
  • 1969 – Venera program: Venera 5, a Soviet spaceprobe, lands on Venus.
  • 1974 – Josip Broz Tito was re-elected as president of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. This time he was elected for life.
  • 1975 – India annexes Sikkim after the mountain state held a referendum where popular vote was in favor of merging with India.
  • 1975 – Junko Tabei becomes the first woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
  • 1983 – Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement rebelled against the Sudanese government.
  • 1986 – The Seville Statement on Violence is adopted by an international meeting of scientists, convened by the Spanish National Commission for UNESCO, in Seville, Spain.
  • 1988 – A report by United States’ Surgeon General C. Everett Koop states that the addictive properties of nicotine are similar to those of heroin and cocaine.
  • 1992 – STS-49: Space Shuttle Endeavour lands safely after a successful maiden voyage.
  • 2003 – In Casablanca, Morocco, 33 civilians are killed and more than 100 people are injured in the Casablanca terrorist attacks.
  • 2004 – The Day of Mourning at Bykivnia forest, just outside of Kiev, Ukraine. Here during 1930’s and early 1940’s communist bolsheviks executed over 100,000 Ukrainian civilians.
  • 2005 – Kuwait permits women’s suffrage in a 35-23 National Assembly vote.
  • 2006 – A large earthquake (7.4 on the Richter scale) occurs near New Zealand.

May 16 – Birthdays:

  • 1490 – Duke Albert of Prussia (d. 1568)
  • 1578 – Everard Digby, English conspirator (d. 1606)
  • 1611 – Pope Innocent XI (d. 1689)
  • 1710 – William Talbot, 1st Earl Talbot, English politician (d. 1782)
  • 1718 – Maria Gaetana Agnesi, Italian mathematician (d. 1799)
  • 1763 – Louis Nicolas Vauquelin, French pharmacist (d. 1829)
  • 1788 – Friedrich Rückert, German Poet, Translator and Orientalist (d. 1866)
  • 1801 – William H. Seward, United States Secretary of State, bought Alaska at 2 ¢/acre (d. 1872)
  • 1821 – Pafnuty Chebyshev, Russian mathematician (d. 1894)
  • 1824 – Levi P. Morton, United States Vice President under Benjamin Harrison (d.1920)
  • 1827 – Pierre Cuypers, Dutch architect (d. 1921)
  • 1831 – David E. Hughes, American musician (d. 1900)
  • 1845 – Ilya Ilyich Mechnikov, Russian microbiologist, Nobel laureate (d. 1916)
  • 1891 – Richard Tauber, Austrian tenor (d. 1948)
  • 1898 – Tamara de Lempicka, Polish-born painter (d. 1980)
  • 1898 – Kenji Mizoguchi, Japanese film director (d. 1956)
  • 1905 – Henry Fonda, American actor (d. 1982)
  • 1906 – Alfred Pellan, French Canadian painter (d. 1988)
  • 1906 – Arturo Uslar Pietri, Venezuelan writer (d. 2001)
  • 1906 – Margret Rey, author and illustrator (d. 1996)
  • 1909 – Margaret Sullavan, American actress (d. 1960)
  • 1910 – Olga Berggolts, Russian poet (d. 1975)
  • 1910 – Aleksandr Ivanovich Laktionov, Russian painter (d. 1972)
  • 1912 – Studs Terkel, American writer
  • 1913 – Woody Herman, American musician and band leader (d. 1987)
  • 1914 – Edward T. Hall, American anthropologist and author
  • 1916 – Adriana Caselotti, American actress (d. 1997)
  • 1917 – Juan Rulfo, Mexican novelist (d. 1986)
  • 1917 – James C. Murray, American politician (d. 1999)
  • 1917 – George Gaynes, American actor
  • 1918 – Wilf Mannion, English former footballer (d. 2000)
  • 1919 – Liberace, American pianist (d. 1987)
  • 1919 – Ramon Margalef, Spanish scientist (d. 2004)
  • 1920 – Martine Carol, French actress (d. 1967)
  • 1921 – Harry Carey, Jr., American actor
  • 1923 – Merton Miller, American economist, Nobel laureate
  • 1925 – Bobbejaan Schoepen, Belgian entertainer
  • 1927 – Nílton Santos, Brazilian footballer
  • 1928 – Billy Martin, American baseball player and coach (d. 1989)
  • 1929 – John Conyers, American politician
  • 1929 – Claude Morin, French Canadian politician
  • 1929 – Adrienne Rich, American writer
  • 1930 – Betty Carter, American jazz singer (d. 1998)
  • 1930 – Friedrich Gulda, Austrian pianist (d. 2000)
  • 1931 – Jack Dodson, American actor (d. 1994)
  • 1931 – Denise Filiatrault, French Canadian actress and director
  • 1931 – Natwar Singh, Indian politician
  • 1931 – Lowell P. Weicker, Jr., American politician
  • 1936 – Roy Hudd, English radio and television actor
  • 1936 – Karl Lehmann, German Catholic cardinal
  • 1937 – Yvonne Craig, American actress
  • 1944 – Billy Cobham, American virtuoso drummer
  • 1944 – Danny Trejo, American actor
  • 1945 – Nicky Chinn, English songwriter (Sweet, Suzi Quatro)
  • 1946 – Robert Fripp, English guitarist (King Crimson)
  • 1946 – Roger Earl, English rock drummer (Savoy Brown, Foghat)
  • 1947 – Bill Smitrovich, American actor
  • 1948 – Katia Dandoulaki, Greek actress
  • 1948 – Judy Finnegan, English TV presenter (Richard & Judy)
  • 1950 – J. Georg Bednorz, German physicist, Nobel laureate
  • 1950 – Ray Condo, Canadian rockabilly musician
  • 1951 – Christian Lacroix, French fashion designer
  • 1951 – Jonathan Richman, American proto-punk icon
  • 1952 – James Herndon, American media psychologist
  • 1953 – Pierce Brosnan, Irish actor
  • 1955 – Olga Korbut, Russian gymnast
  • 1955 – Jack Morris, American baseball player
  • 1955 – Hazel O’Connor, English singer
  • 1955 – Debra Winger, American actress
  • 1959 – Mare Winningham, American actress
  • 1961 – Charles Wright, American professional wrestler known as “The Godfather”
  • 1963 – Jon Coffelt, American artist
  • 1963 – Mercedes Echerer, Austrian actress and politician
  • 1964 – John Salley, American basketball player
  • 1964 – Boyd Tinsley, American violinist (Dave Matthews Band)
  • 1965 – Krist Novoselic, American bassist (Nirvana)
  • 1966 – Janet Jackson, American singer
  • 1966 – Scott Reeves, American actor and singer
  • 1966 – Thurman Thomas, American football player
  • 1968 – Ralph Tresvant, American singer (New Edition)
  • 1968 – Chingmy Yau, Hong Kong actress
  • 1969 – David Boreanaz, American actor
  • 1969 – Tucker Carlson, American television commentator
  • 1969 – Tracey Gold, American actress
  • 1969 – Steve Lewis, American athlete
  • 1970 – Gabriela Sabatini, Argentine tennis player
  • 1970 – Danielle Spencer, Australian singer and actress
  • 1971 – Rachel Goswell, English singer and songwriter (Slowdive, Mojave 3)
  • 1972 – Khary Payton, American actor
  • 1973 – Special Ed, American rapper
  • 1973 – Tori Spelling, American actress
  • 1973 – Jason Acuña “Wee-Man”, American television personality
  • 1974 – Laura Pausini, Italian pop singer
  • 1974 – Sonny Sandoval, American singer (P.O.D.)
  • 1975 – Tony Kakko, Finnish singer (Sonata Arctica)
  • 1975 – Tonéx, American singer
  • 1977 – Dolcenera, Italian singer
  • 1977 – Jean-Sébastien Giguère, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1978 – Lionel Scaloni, Argentine footballer
  • 1978 – David Ford, English singer/songwriter
  • 1979 – McKenzie Lee, English pornographic actress
  • 1980 – Mikel Alonso, Spanish footballer
  • 1980 – Michael Ryan, American ice hockey player
  • 1982 – Joo Ji Hoon, Korean actor and model
  • 1982 – Lukasz Kubot, Polish tennis player
  • 1983 – Kyle Wellwood, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1983 – Nancy Ajram, Lebanese singer
  • 1983 – Gordon McRory, Scottish Drummer (The Fratellis)
  • 1984 – Jensen Lewis, American baseball player
  • 1985 – Anja Mittag, German footballer
  • 1985 – Corey Perry, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1985 – Stanislav Ianevski, Bulgarian actor
  • 1986 – Megan Fox, American actress

May 16 – Deaths:

  • 583 – Saint Brendan, Irish navigator (b. 484)
  • 1265 – Saint Simon Stock, English saint (b. 1165)
  • 1620 – William Adams, English navigator (b. 1564)
  • 1657 – Andrzej Bobola, Polish Jesuit missionary (b. 1591)
  • 1667 – Thomas Wriothesley, 4th Earl of Southampton, English statesman (b. 1607)
  • 1669 – Pietro da Cortona, Italian architect (b. 1596)
  • 1691 – Jacob Leisler, American colonist (b. 1640)
  • 1703 – Charles Perrault, French author (b. 1628)
  • 1778 – Robert Darcy, 4th Earl of Holderness, English diplomat (b. 1718)
  • 1782 – Daniel Solander, Swedish botanist (b. 1736)
  • 1790 – Philip Yorke, 2nd Earl of Hardwicke, English politician (b. 1720)
  • 1830 – Joseph Fourier, French scientist (b. 1768)
  • 1891 – Ion Bratianu, Romanian statesman (b. 1821)
  • 1913 – Louis Perrier, member of the Swiss Federal Council (b. 1849)
  • 1920 – Levi P. Morton, United States Vice President under Benjamin Harrision (b. 1824)
  • 1926 – Mehmed VI, last Ottoman Sultan (b. 1861)
  • 1943 – Alfred Hoche, German psychiatrist (b. 1865)
  • 1944 – George Ade, American author (b. 1866)
  • 1947 – Frederick Hopkins, English biochemist, Nobel laureate (b. 1861)
  • 1953 – Django Reinhardt, Belgian musician (b. 1910)
  • 1954 – Clemens Krauss, Austrian conductor (b. 1893)
  • 1955 – James Agee, American writer (b. 1909)
  • 1956 – H. B. Reese, American founder of Reese’s (b. 1876)
  • 1957 – Eliot Ness, American federal agent (b. 1903)
  • 1959 – Elisha Scott, Northern Irish footballer (b. 1894)
  • 1969 – Robert R., first confirmed death from AIDS in North America (b. 1954)
  • 1979 – A. Philip Randolph, American civil rights activist and labor union leader (b. 1889)
  • 1981 – Ernie Freeman, American pianist and arranger (b. 1922)
  • 1984 – Andy Kaufman, American comedian (b. 1949)
  • 1984 – Irwin Shaw, American author (b. 1913)
  • 1985 – Margaret Hamilton, American actress (b. 1902)
  • 1988 – Charles Keeping, English illustrator (b. 1924)
  • 1990 – Sammy Davis, Jr., American entertainer (b. 1925)
  • 1990 – Jim Henson, American puppeteer (b. 1936)
  • 1992 – Chalino Sanchez, Mexican musician (b, 1960)
  • 1993 – Marv Johnson, American R&B and soul singer (b. 1938)
  • 1996 – Jeremy Michael Boorda, American admiral (b. 1939)
  • 2000 – Bodacious the Bull Famous rodeo bull (b. 1988)
  • 2001 – Brian Pendleton, English musician (The Pretty Things) (b. 1944)
  • 2002 – Alec Campbell, the last surviving ANZAC (b. 1899)
  • 2002 – Big Dick Dudley, American professional wrestler (b. 1968)
  • 2003 – Mark McCormack, American businessman (b. 1930)

May 16 – Holidays:

  • Teachers’ Day in Malaysia.
  • Middlesex Day.
  • Feast days of saints in the Christian Church:
    • Aaron, in the Coptic Church
    • Abda and Abdjesus and companions including Aba of Kaskhar
    • Saint Brendan the Navigator – also in the Irish Calendar.
    • Saint Germerius
    • Saint Honoré of Amiens
    • Saint Andrew Bobola
    • Saint Ubaldus
    • Saint Peregrine of Auxerre
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