Today in History, May 5th


A few of the great historical events that happened today in history, May 5th!

1818 Political philosopher Karl Marx was born in Prussia.
1821 Napoleon Bonaparte dies in exile on the island of St. Helena.Napoleon Bonaparte
1834 The first mainland railway line opens in Belgium.
1862 Union and Confederate forces clash at the Battle of Williamsburg, part of the Peninsula Campaign.Eyewitness to War
1862 Mexican forces loyal to Benito Juarez defeat troops sent by Napoleon III in the Battle of Puebla.
1865 The 13th Amendment is ratified, abolishing slavery.
1886 A bomb explodes on the fourth day of a workers’ strike in Chicago.
1891 Carnegie Hall (then named Music Hall) opened in New York City.
1892 Congress extended the Chinese Exclusion Act for 10 years.
1893 Panic hit the New York Stock Exchange; by year’s end, the country was in the throes of a severe depression.
1904 Cy Young of the Boston Americans pitched the first perfect game in modern major league baseball history in a 3-0 victory over the Philadelphia Athletics.
1912 Soviet Communist Party newspaper Pravda begins publishing.
1916 U.S. Marines invade the Dominican Republic.
1917 Eugene Jacques Bullard becomes the first African-American aviator when he earns a flying certificate with the French Air Service.Eugene-Jacques-Bullard
1920 Anarchists Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Visetti are arrested for murder.
1925 John T. Scopes was arrested in Tennessee for teaching Darwin’s theory of evolution.
1935 American Jesse Owens sets the long jump record.
1942 General Joseph Stilwell learns that the Japanese have cut his railway out of China and is forced to lead his troops into India.
1945 Holland and Denmark are liberated from Nazi control.
1955 West Germany became a sovereign state.
1961 Alan Shepard becomes the first American in space.
1968 U.S. Air Force planes hit Nhi Ha, South Vietnam in support of attacking infantrymen.
1981 Irish Republican Army hunger-striker Bobby Sands died in prison in Northern Ireland on his 66th day without food.
1985 President Ronald Reagan attended a wreath-laying ceremony at a military cemetery in Bitburg, West Germany. The visit drew worldwide condemnation because 49 members of the Waffen SS were buried there.
2002 French President Jacques Chirac was re-elected in a landslide victory over extreme-right leader Jean-Marie Le Pen.
2010 Preliminary plans for a mosque and cultural center near ground zero in New York were unveiled, setting off a national debate over whether the project was disrespectful to 9/11 victims and whether opposition to it exposed anti-Muslim biases.

Today in History facts are from various sites including, but not limited too: the History Channel, The New York Times, WHG, and