Famous Events on this Day in History, January 12:475 - Basiliscus becomes Byzantine Emperor, with a coronation ceremony in the Hebdomon palace in Constantinople.
1493 - Last day for all Jews to leave Sicily
1528 - Gustav I of Sweden crowned king of Sweden.
1552 - Dutch west coast hit by heavy storm, 100s killed
1583 - Holland begins use of Gregorian calendar (yesterday was 1/1/1583)
1598 - Pope Clement VIII seizes duchy of Ferrara on death of Alfonso
1684 - French king Louis XIV marries Madame Maintenon
1701 - Frisia & Groningen begin use of Gregorian calendar
1701 - Parts of Netherlands adopt Gregorian calendar
1723 - Handel's opera "Ottone" premieres, London
1755 - Tsarina Elisabeth establishes 1st Russian University
1773 - 1st US public museum established (Charlestown SC)
1777 - Mission Santa Clara de Asis founded in Calif
1806 - French evacuate Vienna
1807 - Gunpowder-ship explodes in Leiden Neth, 150 die
1808 - The organizational meeting that led to the creation of the Wernerian Natural History Society, a former Scottish learned society, is held in Edinburgh.
1809 - British take Cayenne (French Guiana) from French (until 1814)
1812 - 1st cargo arrives in New Orleans by steam, from Natchez
1816 - France decrees Bonaparte family excluded from the country forever
1820 - Royal Astronomical Society founded in England
1836 - Battle of Wetumka, Fla
1836 - HMS Beagle/Charles Darwin reach Sydney Australia
1839 - Anthracite coal 1st used to smelt iron, Mauch Chunk, Penn
1842 - Franciscan nuns begin missionary work on Netherland Antilles
1861 - FL state troops demand surrender of Ft Pickens
1863 - President Davis delivers his "State of Confederacy" address
1865 - -13] Union fleet bombs Fort Fisher NC
1866 - The Royal Aeronautical Society is formed in London.
1867 - Leo Tolstoy's "Smert Ioonna Groznogo," premieres in St Petersburg
1872 - Yohannes IV is crowned Emperor of Ethiopia in Axum, the first imperial coronation in that city in over 200 years.
1875 - Kwang-su becomes emperor of China.
1879 - British Zulu War begins: Lt-General Chelmsford invades Zululand
1895 - The National Trust is founded in Britain.
1896 - 1st X-ray photo in US (Dr Henry Smith, Davidson NC)
1898 - Ito Hirobumi begins his third term as Prime Minister of Japan.
1900 - Freeland Colony founded in US
1903 - Harry Houdini performs at Rembrandt theater, Amsterdam
1903 - Rhodes Opera House burns in Boyertown Pa, killing 170
1904 - Southwest-Africa uprising under Samuel Maherero against German garison
1906 - 1st time Dow Jones closes above 100 (100.26)
1906 - Football rules committee legalizes forward pass
1906 - Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman's cabinet (which included amongst its members H.H. Asquith, David Lloyd George, and Winston Churchill) embarks on sweeping social reforms after a Liberal landslide in the British general election.
1907 - Britain grants responsible govt to former colony of Transvaal
1908 - A long-distance radio message is sent from the Eiffel Tower for the first time.
1911 - The University of the Philippines College of Law is formally established; three future Philippine presidents are among the first enrollees.
1912 - -47°F (-44°C), Washta, Iowa (state record)
1915 - House of Reps rejects proposal to give women right to vote
1916 - Britain proclaims Gilbert & Ellice Is colony in Pacific
1918 - Montreal Canadien Joe Malone scores 5 goals beating Ottawa 9-4
1918 - Finland's "Mosaic Confessors" law went into effect, making Finnish Jews full citizens.
1920 - Annual drafting of baseball players from minor leagues to be done in inverse order of the final standings, agreed to
1921 - Kenesaw Mountain Landis becomes 1st commissioner of baseball
1924 - History of Science Society organized at Boston
1925 - John Howard Lawson's "Processional," premieres in NYC
1928 - Philip Barry & Elmer Rice's "Cock Robin," premieres in NYC
1929 - Seatrain (RR cars on ships) service begins, New Orleans-Havana
1930 - NHL's Boston Bruins win then-record 14th consecutive game
1932 - France's Laval govt falls
1932 - Hattie W Caraway elected 1st woman senator (D-Ark)
1932 - Philip Barry's "Animal Kingdom," premieres in NYC
1933 - US Congress recognize independence Philippines
1933 - Uprising of Guardia Civil in Spain, 25 dies
1937 - Plow for laying submarine cable patented
1940 - World War II: Soviets bombs cities in Finland.
1942 - British troops reconquer Sollum
1942 - Dutch troops on Tarakan surrender
1942 - National War Labor Board created
1943 - Frankfurters replaced by Victory Sausages (mix of meat & soy meal)
1944 - Churchill & de Gaulle begin a 2-day wartime conference in Marrakesh
1944 - Failed resistance raid on distribution office of Borgerstraat Amsterd
1945 - German forces in Belgium retreat in Battle of Bulge
1945 - US Task Force 38 destroys 41 Jap ships in Battle of South China Sea
1945 - World War II: The Soviets begin a large offensive against the Nazis in Eastern Europe.
1946 - "Polonaise" closes at Alvin Theater NYC after 113 performances
1946 - Edouardo de Filippo's "Questi Fantasmi!," premieres in Rome
1946 - NFL champs Cleveland Rams given permission to move to LA
1948 - 1st Supermarket in UK opens
1948 - Mahatma Gandhi begins his final fast
1948 - US Supreme Court decision (Sipuel v Oklahoma State Board of Regents)
1949 - "Arthur Godfrey & His Friends" premieres on CBS TV
1949 - Dutch court affirms death sentence against SS chief Hanns Rauter
1950 - Swedish tanker rams British submarine Truculent in Thames, 64 die
1950 - USSR re-introduces death penalty for treason, espionage & sabotage
1951 - Ezzard Charles TKOs Lee Oma in 10 for heavyweight boxing title
1952 - NFL Pro Bowl: N Conf beats A Conf 30-13
1952 - University of Tennessee admits it's 1st black student
1953 - 9 "Jewish" physicians arrested for "terrorist activities" in Moscow
1954 - Austria's worst avalanche-kills 200; 9hrs later 2nd one-kills 115
1954 - Queen Elizabeth II opens NZ parliament
1957 - Southern Christian Leadership Council (SCLC) founded
1958 - Mickey Wright wins LPGA Sea Island Golf Open
1958 - NCAA adds 2 point conversion to football scoring
1958 - NFL Pro Bowl: West beats East 26-7
1958 - Syracuse National Dolph Schayes sets NBA record at 11,770 points
1959 - KOED TV channel 11 in Tulsa, OK (PBS) begins broadcasting
1960 - Sobers & Worrell complete 399 stand for 4th wkt v England
1960 - Syracuse National Dolph Schayes is 1st NBA'er to score 15,000 points
1961 - "Show Girl" opens at Eugene O'Neill Theater NYC for 100 performances
1961 - UN genocide pact goes into effect
1963 - "Go Away Little Girl" by Steve Lawrence peaks at #1
1963 - Spin bowler Bobby Simpson takes 5-57 for Australia v England
1964 - NFL Pro Bowl: West beats East 31-17
1964 - Revolution overthrows Sultan of Zanzibar, 1 month after independence
1965 - "Hullabaloo" premieres on NBC-TV
1965 - At 10:58 am PST burn up a nuclear rocket in Nevada
1966 - "Batman" with Adam West & Burt Ward premieres on ABC TV
1966 - 12 day NYC transit strike ends
1966 - LBJ says US should stay in S Vietnam until communist aggression ends
1966 - Red Auerbach wins his 1,000th game as coach of NBA Boston Celtics
1967 - Louisville, Ky, draft board refuses exemption for boxer Muhammad Ali
1967 - Dr. James Bedford becomes the first person to be cryonically preserved with intent of future resuscitation.
1968 - Beatles Film Production Ltd changes name to Apple Film Production Ltd
1968 - Nighttime version of "Hollywood Squares" premieres on NBC TV
1969 - "Golden Rainbow" closes at Shubert Theater NYC after 355 performances
1969 - Superbowl III: NY Jets beat Balt Colts, 16-7 in Miami Superbowl MVP: Joe Namath, NY Jets, QB
1970 - Biafran War ends, Biafra surrenders to Nigeria
1970 - Boeing 747 makes its maiden voyage
1970 - Biafra capitulates, ending the Nigerian civil war.
1971 - "All in the Family" premieres on CBS featuring 1st toilet flush on TV
1971 - "Soon" opens at Ritz Theater NYC for 3 performances
1971 - Congressional Black Caucus organizes
1971 - Fed grand jury indicts Rev Philip Berrigan & 5 others, including a nun & 2 priests, on charges of plotting to kidnap Henry Kissinger
1972 - Tigers sign a lease to build a $126M domed stadium (doesn't happen)
1974 - "Joker" by Steve Miller Band peaks at #1
1974 - Libya & Tunisia announces they are merging as "Islamic Arab Republic"
1975 - Chrysler Corp offers 1st car rebates
1975 - Superbowl IX: Pitts Steelers beat Minn Vikings, 16-6 in New Orleans Superbowl MVP: Franco Harris, Pittsburgh, RB
1976 - UN Security Council votes 11-1 to seat Palestine Liberation Org
1977 - "Ipi Tombi" opens at Harkness Theater NYC for 39 performances
1977 - Anti-French demonstrations takes place in Israel after Paris released Abu Daoud, responsible 1972 Munich massacre of Israeli athletes
1979 - 6th American Music Award: Barry Manilow, Linda Ronstadt win
1979 - LA's Hillside Strangler, Kenneth Bianchi, arrested in Bellingham
1979 - Record blizzard struck midwest killing over 100
1980 - Mike Bratz (Phoenix) begins NBA free throw streak of 57 games
1981 - "Dynasty" with Joan Collins premieres on ABC-TV
1981 - -35°F (-37°C), Chester, Massachusetts (state record)
1981 - Dynasty, a prime time soap opera inspired by Dallas, premieres on ABC
1983 - Brooks Robinson & Juan Marichal elected to Hall of Fame
1983 - NCAA creates football Kickoff Classic to begin in August
1986 - 24th space shuttle (61-C) mission-Columbia 7-launched
1986 - Chic Blackhawk Denis Savard scores at 4 seconds of 3rd period
1986 - Miami Dolphins win AFC football championship
1987 - Britain's Prince Edward resigns from his Royal Marines training
1988 - Willie Stargell (Pitts Pirate), elected to Baseball Hall of Fame
1989 - 6 claim to survive in rubble, 35 days after Armenian quake (hoax)
1989 - Idi Amin expelled from Zaire
1990 - Civil Rights activist Rev Al Sharpton is stabbed in Bensonhurst Bkln
1990 - Romania bans Communist party (1st Warsaw Pact member to do so)
1991 - Largest crowd to watch Atlantic Coast Womens Basketball game (11,520)
1991 - Melvin Stewart swims world record 200 m butterfly (1:55.69)
1991 - US Congress gives George Bush authority to wage war against Iraq
1992 - 13th ACE Cable Awards: HBO wins 27 awards
1992 - Last building in Gateway area in Cleveland is demolished
1992 - US male Figure Skating championship won by Christopher Bowman
1992 - Algeria's general elections canceled after strong gains by Islamic Salvation Front in the 1st round
1992 - A new constitution, providing for freedom to form political parties, is approved by a referendum in Mali.
1993 - Doctors announce Pitts Penguin Mario Limeux has Hodgkin's disease
1993 - MTV hostess Martha Quinn marries longtime boyfriend Jordan Tarlow
1994 - Malcolm X's daughter arrested for plotting Louis Farrakham's murder
1994 - Steve Carlton (Phillies) elected to Baseball Hall of Fame
1995 - Major earthquake kills 5,092 in Kobe Japan
1995 - Murder trial against OJ Simpson, begins in LA
1995 - Pope John Paul II begins visit to SE Asia
1996 - Russian troops arrived in Bosnia (joint operation with US)
1997 - 17th United Negro College Fund raises
1997 - Annika Sorenstam wins LPGA Chrysler-Plymouth Tournament of Champions
1997 - Chrysler-Plymouth LPGA Tournament of Champions
1997 - HAL became operational (2001: A Space Odyssey)
1997 - Ice skater Oksana Baiul injured slightly whiled driving intoxicated
1997 - Space Shuttle STS 81 (Atlantis 18), launches into space
1997 - Tiger Woods wins Mercedes Championships
1997 - wins Chrysler-Plymouth Tournament Of Champions
1998 - Nineteen European nations agree to forbid human cloning.
2004 - The world's largest ocean liner, RMS Queen Mary 2, makes its maiden voyage.
2005 - Deep Impact (space mission) launches from Cape Canaveral on a Delta 2 rocket.
2006 - A stampede during the Stoning the Devil ritual on the last day at the Hajj in Mina, Saudi Arabia, kills at least 362 Muslim pilgrims.
2006 - Turkey releases Mehmet Ali Agca from jail after he served 25 years for shooting Pope John Paul II.
2006 - The French warship Clemenceau reaches Egypt and is barred access to the Suez Canal. Greenpeace activists board the ship.
2006 - The foreign ministers of the United Kingdom, France, and Germany declare that negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program have reached a dead end and recommend that Iran be referred to the United Nations Security Council.
2007 - Comet McNaught reaches perihelion becoming the brightest comet in more than 40 years.