1291 – After 100 years of Crusader control, Acre is the last Crusader stronghold reconquered and destroyed by the Mamluks under Sultan al-Ashraf Khalil
1804 - Napoleon Bonaparte proclaimed Emperor of France by the French Senate
1896 - Khodynka Tragedy: A mass panic on Khodynka Field, Moscow, during the festivities of the coronation of Russian Tsar Nicholas II, results in the deaths of 1,389 people
1940 – Brussels fell to the invading German army in World War II and was subjected to harsh terms of occupation.
1953 – American aviator Jacqueline Cochran became the first woman to break the sound barrier.
1956 – Swiss climbers Fritz Luchsinger and Ernest Reiss made the first ascent of the Lhotse I mountain in the Himalayas.
1974 – India becomes the sixth nation to explode an atomic bomb
1980 – Following an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.1 on the Richter scale, Mount St. Helens in Washington erupted in one of the greatest volcanic explosions ever recorded in North America.
2009 – Sri Lankan Civil War: The LTTE are defeated by the Sri Lankan government, ending almost 26 years of fighting between the two sides.
2012 – Facebook, an American company offering online social networking services, held its initial public offering, which raised $16 billion.
Births & Deaths:
1883 – German architect and educator Walter Gropius, who exerted a major influence on the development of modern architecture while serving as director of the Bauhaus (1919–28), was born in Berlin.
1920 – Karol Jozef Wojtyla is born in the Polish town of Wadowice, 35 miles southwest of Krakow. Wojtyla went on to become Pope John Paul II, history’s most well-traveled pope and the first non-Italian to hold the position since the 16th century.
1927 – Grauman’s Chinese Theater opens in Hollywood, California
1999 – “Millennium” 3rd studio album by the Backstreet Boys is released – one of the best-selling albums of all time, over 30 million copies sold
1990 - Edmonton right wing Jari Kurri sets record for scoring in a Stanley Cup Finals game with 3 goals and 2 assists in 7-2 win at Boston Garden
Via Britannica / On This Day