What happened on January 20 ?
1156 - According to legend, freeholder Lalli slays English crusader Bishop Henry with an axe on the ice of the lake Köyliönjärvi in Finland.
1265 - In Westminster, the first English parliament conducts its first meeting in the Palace of Westminster, now also known as the "Houses of Parliament".
1320 - Dante - Quaestio de Aqua et Terra.
1320 - Duke Wladyslaw Lokietek becomes king of Poland.
1356 - Edward Balliol resigns as King of Scotland.
1523 - Christian II is forced to abdicate as King of Denmark and Norway.
1576 - The Mexican city of León is founded by order of the viceroy Don Martín Enríquez de Almanza.
1649 - Charles I of England goes on trial for treason and other "high crimes"
1667 - Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth cedes Kyiv, Smolensk, and left-bank Ukraine to Imperial Russia in the treaty of Andrusiv.
1783 - The Kingdom of Great Britain signs a peace treaty with France and Spain, officially ending hostilities in the Revolutionary War.
1801 - John Marshall is appointed the Chief Justice of the United States.
1839 - In the Battle of Yungay, Chile defeats a Peruvian and Bolivian alliance.
1840 - Dumont D'Urville discovers Adélie Land, Antarctica.
1840 - Willem II becomes King of the Netherlands.
1841 - Hong Kong Island occupied by the British Empire.
1885 - L.A. Thompson patents the roller coaster.
1887 - The United States Senate allows the Navy to lease Pearl Harbor as a naval base.
1892 - At the YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts, the first official basketball game is played.
1920 - American Civil Liberties Union founded.
1921 - The first constitution of Turkey was adopted, which made fundamental change in the source and exercise of sovereignty.
1929 - In Old Arizona, the first full-length talking film filmed outdoors, is released.
1936 - Edward VIII becomes King of the United Kingdom.
1937 - The coldest temperature in California is recorded by Boca station at -45° Fahrenheit.
1937 - Franklin D. Roosevelt is inaugurated for a second term as President of the United States. This is the first inauguration scheduled on January 20, following adoption of the 20th Amendment. Previous inaugurations were scheduled on March 4.
1941 - Franklin D. Roosevelt is inaugurated for an unprecedented third term as President of the United States.
1942 - World War II: Nazis at the Wannsee conference in Berlin decide the "final solution to the Jewish problem".
1944 - World War II: The Royal Air Force drops 2,300 tons of bombs on Berlin.
1945 - Franklin D. Roosevelt is inaugurated for an unprecedented fourth term as President of the United States.
1945 - Hungary drops out of the Second World War, agreeing an armistice with the Allies.
1949 - Harry S. Truman is inaugurated for a second term as President of the United States.
1952 - Edgar Faure becomes Prime Minister of France.
1953 - Dwight Eisenhower is inaugurated as 34th President of the United States.
1954 - The National Negro Network is established with 40 charter member radio stations.
1957 - Dwight Eisenhower is inaugurated for a second term as President of the United States.
1960 - Hendrik Verwoerd announced a plebiscite on whether South Africa should become a Republic.
1961 - John F. Kennedy is inaugurated as 35th President of the United States.
1964 - Meet the Beatles, the first Beatles album in the United States, is released.
1965 - Lyndon B. Johnson is inaugurated for a second term as President of the United States.
1969 - Richard Nixon is inaugurated as 37th President of the United States.
1969 - The first pulsar is discovered, in the Crab Nebula.
1973 - Richard Nixon is inaugurated for a second term as President of the United States.
1977 - Jimmy Carter is inaugurated as 39th President of the United States.
1981 - Ronald W. Reagan is inaugurated as the 40th President of the United States.
1981 - Iran releases 52 American hostages twenty minutes after Ronald Reagan is inaugurated as U.S. President.
1985 - As this day fell on a Sunday, Ronald Reagan's inauguration for his second term was held in the Grand Foyer of the White House in a private ceremony.
1986 - Martin Luther King, Jr., day was celebrated as a federal holiday for the first time.
1986 - The United Kingdom and France announce plans to construct the Channel Tunnel.
1987 - Church of England envoy Terry Waite is kidnapped in Lebanon.
1989 - George H. W. Bush is inaugurated as the 41st President of the United States.
1990 - Black January - bloody crackdown of Azerbaijani peaceful pro-independence demonstrations by Soviet army in Baku.
1991 - Sudan's government imposes Islamic law nationwide, worsening the civil war between the country's Muslim north and Christian south.
1993- Bill Clinton is inaugurated as the 42nd President of the United States.
1996 - Yasser Arafat is elected president of the Palestinian Authority.
1997 - Bill Clinton is inaugurated for a second term as President of the United States.
1999 - The China News Service announces new government restrictions on Internet use aimed especially at Internet bars.
2001 - Philippine president Joseph Estrada is ousted in the EDSA II Revolution, succeeded by Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
2001 - George W. Bush is inaugurated as the 43rd President of the United States.
2005 - George W. Bush is inaugurated for a second term as President of the United States.
2005 - Ireland completes metrication.
2009 - George W. Bush's Presidential term expires.