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43 BC - Battle of Forum Gallorum. Mark Antony, besieging Julius Caesar's assassin Decimus Junius Brutus in Mutina, defeats the forces of the consul Pansa, who is killed.

69 - Vitellius, commander of the Rhine armies, defeats Emperor Otho in the Battle of Bedriacum and seizes the throne.

1028 - Henry III, son of Conrad, is elected king of the Germans.

1205 - Battle of Adrianople between Bulgars and Crusaders.

1471 - In England, the Yorkists under Edward IV defeat the Lancastrians under Warwick at the battle of Barnet; the Earl of Warwick is killed and Edward IV resumes the throne.

1632 - Battle of Rain: Swedes under Gustavus Adolphus defeat the Holy Roman Empire during the Thirty Years' War.

1699 - Khalsa. Birth of Khalsa, the brotherhood of the Sikh religion, in Northern India in accordance with the Nanakshahi Calender.

1775 - The first abolition society in the North America is established. The "Society for the Relief of Free Negroes Unlawfully Held in Bondage" is organized in Philadelphia by Benjamin Franklin and Benjamin Rush.

1828 - Noah Webster copyrights the first edition of his dictionary.

1831 - Soldiers marching on a bridge in Manchester, England cause it to collapse.

1846 - The Donner Party of pioneers departs Springfield, Illinois, for California, on what will become a year-long journey of hardship, cannibalism, and survival.

1849 - Hungary declares itself independent of Austria with Louis Kossuth as its leader.

1860 - The first Pony Express rider reaches Sacramento, California.


1864 - Battle of Dybbøl: A Prussian-Austrian army defeats Denmark and gains control of Schleswig. Denmark surrenders the province in the following peace settlement.

1865 - President Abraham Lincoln is shot by John Wilkes Booth; he dies the next day.

1881 - Four Dead in Five Seconds Gunfight erupted and abruptly ended on El Paso Street when the newly appointed town marshal, Dallas Stoudenmire, involuntarily became the main participant and in just five seconds, four men laid dead. This permanently changed El Paso's history when the marshal quickly civilized the town by law and terror.

1890 - The Pan-American Union is founded by the First International Conference of American States at their meeting in Washington. Known originally as the International Bureau of American Republics, William Elleroy Curtis becomes its first director.

1894 - Thomas Edison demonstrates the kinetoscope, a device for peep-show viewing using photographs that flip in sequence, a precursor to movies.

1912 - The British ocean liner RMS Titanic strikes an iceberg in the North Atlantic on its maiden voyage, plunging beneath the waves and taking with it over 1,500 lives at about 2:20 a.m. the following morning.

1915 - The Turks invade Armenia.

1927 - The first Volvo car premieres, in Gothenburg, Sweden.

1931 - Spanish Cortes deposes King Alfonso XIII and proclaims the 2nd Spanish Republic.

1935 - "Black Sunday", the worst dust storm of the Dust Bowl.

1935 - Babe Ruth plays his first National League game in Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. In this year - his last year of pro ball in the major leagues - he is playing for the Boston Braves, not his old team the Red Sox. In this season, Ruth plays 28 games, getting 13 hits and six home runs, before retiring.

1940 - Royal Marines land in Namsos, Norway, occupying key points, preparatory to a larger force arriving two days later.

1941 - World War II: The Ustashe, a Croatian far-right organisation that pursued Nazi and fascist policies, is put in charge of the Independent State of Croatia by the Axis Powers after the April 6 invasion of Yugoslavia during Operation Castigo.


1944 - Huge explosion rocks the Bombay harbour killing 300 and causing a loss of 20 million pounds at that time. See: Bombay Explosion (1944).

1945 - Osijek, Croatia, is liberated from fascistic occupation.

1956 - Videotape is first demonstrated at the 1956 NARTB (now NAB) convention in Chicago, Illinois. It is the demonstration of the first practical and commercially successful format called 2" Quadruplex.

1958 - The Soviet satellite Sputnik 2 falls from orbit after a mission duration of 162 days.

1962 - Georges Pompidou becomes Prime Minister of France.

1964 - A Delta rocket's third-stage motor prematurely ignites in an assembly room at Cape Canaveral, killing 3.

1968 - At the Academy Awards, a tie between Katharine Hepburn and Barbra Streisand results in the two sharing the Best Actress Oscar; Hepburn also becomes the only actress to win three Best Actress Oscars.

1970 - One of Apollo 13's oxygen tanks explodes, causing a cancelled moon mission. The explosion occurrs on April 13th in several time zones.

1986 - In retaliation for the April 5 bombing of the La Belle Discotheque in West Berlin in which two U.S. servicemen were killed, Ronald Reagan orders major bombing raids against Tripoli and Benghazi, in Libya, which kills 60 people.

1986 - 2.2 lb (1 kg) hailstones fall on the Gopalganj district of Bangladesh, killing 92. These are the heaviest hailstones ever recorded.

1988 - USS Samuel B. Roberts strikes a mine in the Persian Gulf during Operation Earnest Will. U.S. retaliates against Iran on April 18 with Operation Praying Mantis, the world's largest naval battle since World War II.

2003 - Human Genome Project successfully completed with 99% of the human genome sequenced to 99.99% accuracy.


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