145 - Septimius Severus born
1762 - Anthony Benezet published "An Account of African Civilization and Culture"
1785 - John James Audubon born
1821 - African Theater Company performed for the first time
1886 - William Levi Dawson, first African-American chair of a Congressional committee (the House Committee on Governmental Operations), born
1886 - "Ma" Rainey (Gertrude Pridgett) born
1892 - Sarah Boone received a patent on an ironing board with folding legs (patent #473,653)
1898 - J.A. Joyce received a patent on the ore bucket (patent #603,143)
1915 - Johnny Shines born
1958 - Giancarlo Esposito born
1964 - Tanganyika and Zanzibar merged to form Tanzania.
1970 - Tionne Watkins (T-Boz) born
1977 - Studio 54 opened in New York.
1984 - William "Count" Basie died
1986 - The world's worst nuclear disaster to date occurred at Chernobyl, Ukraine.
1991 - Maryann Bishop Coffey was named the first woman and the first African American co-chair of the National Conference of Christians and Jews
1994 - South Africa held its first all-race elections.
2003 - Eminem and Nas received awards for youth empowerment and community development at the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network's (HSAN)