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69 - Galba, governor of Hispania, names himself legatus senatus populique Romani, breaking the line of Roman emperors begun with Julius Caesar and Augustus.

1453 - Mehmed II begins his siege of Constantinople (?stanbul), which would fall on May 29.

1513 - Juan Ponce de Leon sets foot on Florida becoming the first known European to do so.

1755 - Commodore William James captures pirate fortress of Suvarnadurg on west coast of India.

1792 - The Coinage Act is passed establishing the United States Mint.

1801 - Napoleonic Wars: Battle of Copenhagen - The British destroy the Danish fleet.

1863 - Richmond Bread Riots: Food shortages incite hundreds of angry women to riot in Richmond, Virginia and demand the Confederate government to release emergency supplies.

1865 - American Civil War: Siege of Petersburg broken - Union troops capture the trenches around Petersburg, Virginia, forcing Confederate General Robert E. Lee to retreat.

1865 - American Civil War: Confederate President Jefferson Davis and most of his Cabinet flee the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia.

1900 - The Foraker Act passes through Congress, giving Puerto Ricans limited self-rule.

1902 - Dmitry Sipyagin, Minister of Interior of the Russian Empire, is assassinated by a terrorist in the Marie Palace, St Petersburg.

1902 - "Electric Theatre", the first full-time movie theater in the United States, opens in Los Angeles, California.

1917 - World War I: U.S. President Woodrow Wilson asks the U.S. Congress for a declaration of war on Germany.


1917 - The first woman ever elected to the U.S. Congress, Jeannette Rankin, takes her seat as a representative from Montana.

1930 - Haile Selassie is proclaimed emperor of Ethiopia.

1956 - As the World Turns and The Edge of Night first aired on the CBS network in the United States, as the first half-hour serial dramas.

1972 - Actor Charlie Chaplin returns to the United States for the first time since being labeled a communist in the early 1950s during the Red Scare.

1972 - Vietnam War: Easter Offensive begins - North Vietnamese soldiers of the 304th Division take the northern half of Quang Tri Province.

1973 - Launch of LexisNexis computerized legal research service.

1975 - Vietnam War: Thousands of civilian refugees flee from the Quang Ngai Province in front of advancing North Vietnamese troops.

1975 - CN Tower completed in Toronto Ontario Canada: reaches 553.33 metres in height, becoming the world's tallest free-standing structure

1980 - U.S. President Jimmy Carter signs the Crude Oil Windfall Profits Tax Act in an effort to help the U.S. economy rebound.

1982 - Falklands War: 1982 invasion of the Falkland Islands by Argentina. The disputed islands are later retaken by the United Kingdom.

1989 - Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev arrives in Havana, Cuba to meet with Fidel Castro in an attempt to mend strained relations.

1992 - In New York, Mafia boss John Gotti is convicted of murder and racketeering and is later sentenced to life in prison.

1992 - Pierre Bérégovoy becomes Prime Minister of France.


2002 - Israeli forces surrounded the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem into which armed Palestinians retreated. A siege ensues.

2004 - Islamist terrorists involved in the 11 March 2004 Madrid attacks attempt a thwarted bombing of the Spanish high-speed train AVE near Madrid.

2005 - Pope John Paul II dies. Hundreds of millions of Catholics and non-Catholics mourn worldwide.

2005 - James Stewart Jr. becomes first African American to win a major motorsports event.

2006 - Over 50 tornadoes breakout, hardest hit is Tennessee with 28 people killed.


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