Events in History on May 16

  • 955 Octavian, son of Duke Alberic II of Spoleto, elected Pope John XII
  • 1165 Ramjbam & his family reach Acre Palestine
  • 1204 Baldwin IX, Count of Flanders, is crowned as the first Emperor of the Latin Empire of Constantinople
  • 1220 English King Henry III lays the foundation stone for a new Lady Chapel, start of the rebuilding of Westminster Abbey, in London
  • 1527 Florence becomes a republic
  • 1532 Sir Thomas More resigns as Lord Chancellor of England
  • 1547 Protestant German monarch surrenders to Karel in Wittenberg

Historic Event

1568 Mary Queen of Scots flees to England

Historic Event

1571 German astronomer Johannes Kepler, by his own calculations, is conceived at 4:37 AM

  • 1584 7 Westfriese towns divide monasteries of Egmond, Blokker and St Pietersdal
  • 1605 Camillo Borghese elected to succeed Pope Leo XI, becomes Paul V
  • 1606 2,000 foreigners murdered in Russia
  • 1648 Battle of Zhovti Vody: Ukrainian Cossacks, commanded by Bohdan Khmelnytsky. and Crimean Tatars led by Tuhaj Bej, defeat Polish King John II Casimir, after 18 days of battle
  • 1747 Prince Willem V sworn in as admiral-general of Netherlands

Meeting of Interest

1763 Samuel Johnson 1st meets his future biographer James Boswell in London

  • 1771 The Battle of Alamance, a pre-American Revolutionary War battle between local militia and a group of rebels called "The Regulators", occurs in present-day Alamance County, North Carolina.
  • 1777 Button Gwinnett, Georgia delegate to US Continental Congress, and signer of the Declaration of Independence, wounded in a duel with political rival Lachlan McIntosh
  • 1792 Denmark abolishes slave trade
  • 1795 Hedges Treaty: Bataafse Republic becomes French vassal state
  • 1796 Lombardian Republic forms
  • 1811 Peninsular War: Allies defeat French at Albuera
  • 1815 The Governor of New South Wales, Lachlan Macquarie, officially names the town of Blackheath in the upper Blue Mountains
  • 1817 Mississippi River steamboat service begins
  • 1822 Greek War of Independence: Turks capture the Greek town of Souli

Presidential Convention

1860 -18] Chicago: Republican convention selects Abraham Lincoln as candidate

  • 1861 Confederate government offers war volunteers $10 premium
  • 1861 Kentucky proclaims its neutrality
  • 1861 Major General Twiggs surrenders to Confederate Army in San Antonio, Texas (US Civil War)
  • 1862 Jean Joseph Etienne Lenoir builds 1st automobile
  • 1863 Battle of Champion's Hill, Mississippi - bloodiest action of Vicksburg Campaign
  • 1864 Atlanta Campaign: Battle of Resaca, ends (since May 13)
  • 1864 Battle of Bermuda Hundred, Virginia
  • 1864 Last battles at Drewry's Bluff, Virginia (6,666 casualties)
  • 1866 US Congress authorizes the nickel 5 cent piece (replaces silver half-dime)

Historic Event

1868 US Senate fails to impeach President Andrew Johnson by one vote

  • 1872 Metropolitan Gas Company lamps lit for 1st time
  • 1874 1st recorded dam disaster in US (Williamsburg, Massachusetts)
  • 1875 Eathquake in Venezuela & Colombia kills 16,000

Historic Invention

1876 Pharmacist Charles E. Hires presents "Hires Root Beer" at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania [1] [2]

  • 1877 May 16, 1877 political crisis in France.
  • 1879 Treaty of Gandamak to set up Afghan state between Russia & English
  • 1881 World's 1st electric tram enters service in Lichterfelder (near Berlin)
  • 1884 Italian inventor Angelo Moriondo receives patent for 1st espresso machine
  • 1888 CPR opens Hotel Vancouver, Vancouver, British Columbia
  • 1891 George A. Hormel & Co establishes Geo. A.Hormel & Co. (Hormel Foods Corporation) in Austin, Minnesota
  • 1902 2 deaf-mutes face each other for 1st time as Dummy Hoy leads off for the Reds against Dummy Taylor of the Giants, Reds win 5-3
  • 1903 1st transcontinental motorcycle trip began in San Francisco by George A. Wyman (arrives in New York July 6)
  • 1907 In the Pact of Cartagena, Great Britain, France, and Spain agree to maintain the status quo in the Mediterranean and along the Atlantic coast of Europe and Africa
  • 1910 US Bureau of Mines forms
  • 1911 Remains of a neanderthal man found on Jersey, Channel Islands

Historic Event

1911 Zeppelin "Deutscheland" wrecked at Dusseldorf

  • 1918 The Sedition Act of 1918 is passed by the U.S. Congress, making criticism of the government an imprisonable offense.


1920 Joan of Arc (Jeanne D'arc) canonized a saint

  • 1920 Spanish bullfighter Joselito is fatally gored fighting his last bull
  • 1922 White Star Liner Majestic completes 5½ day maiden voyage
  • 1924 108°F (42°C) in Blitzen, Oregon
  • 1927 US Supreme Court ruled bootleggers must pay income tax
  • 1933 Cecil Travis becomes 1st player to get 5 hits in his 1st game
  • 1936 1st British air hostess Daphne Kearley flies to France
  • 1938 1st animal breeding society forms (NJ)
  • 1938 38 die in Terminal Hotel fire (Atlanta Ga)
  • 1939 1st AL night game, Philadelphia Shribe Park (Indians 8, Athletics 3 in 10)
  • 1939 US food stamps are 1st issued in Rochester, New York

Historic Event

1940 British Premier Winston Churchill returns to London from Paris

  • 1940 Nazis forbid non-professional auto workers
  • 1941 Italian army under Aosta surrenders to Britain at Amba Alagi, Ethiopia
  • 1941 Last great German air attack on Great Britain (Birmingham)
  • 1942 1st transport of British and Dutch prisoners to South Burma

Historic Event

1943 Operation Chastise: No. 617 Squadron RAF begins the famous Dambusters Raid, bombing the Möhne and Eder dams in the Ruhr valley with bouncing bombs

Historic Event

1943 SS General Jürgen Stroop orders the burning of the Warsaw Ghetto, ending a month of Jewish resistance. 13,000 Jews have died, about half burnt alive or suffocated, German casualties less than 300

Historic Event

1944 1st of 180,000+ Hungarian Jews reach Auschwitz

  • 1945 Violent battles around Sugar Loaf and Half Moon, Okinawa

Election of Interest

1948 Chaim Weizmann elected 1st President of Israel

  • 1948 Egyptians enter Gaza
  • 1948 Israel issues its 1st postage stamps
  • 1951 The first regularly scheduled transatlantic flights begin between Idlewild Airport (New York International Airport) and Heathrow Airport (London), operated by El Al Israel Airlines
  • 1955 King Baudouin of Belgium visits Congo
  • 1956 Egypt recognizes People's Republic of China
  • 1956 Great Britain performs nuclear Test at Monte Bello Is Australia
  • 1956 Kraft Theater presents an act from "Profiles in Courage"

Catholic Encyclical

1957 Pope Pius XII publishes encyclical Invicti Athletae

  • 1957 US launches its 3rd atomic submarine, USS Skate, at Groton, Connecticut
  • 1958 Eli Beeding experiences 83 g deceleration on a rocket sled, New Mexico
  • 1958 Major Irwin, USAF, flies a Lockheed Starfight F-104 A to a record 1,404.18 MPH
  • 1960 Big 4 summit in Paris collapses as USSR levels spy charges against US
  • 1960 Theodore Maiman operates the first optical laser, at Hughes Research Laboratories in Malibu, California
  • 1963 Gordon Cooper completes 22 orbits in Faith 7, ends US Proj Mercury
  • 1964 USSR performs nuclear Test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • 1964 Verne Gagne beats Mad Dog Vachon in Omaha, to become NWA champ
  • 1965 Bomb destroys USAF base Bien Hoa, South Vietnam
  • 1965 The Campbell Soup Company introduces SpaghettiOs under its Franco-American brand
  • 1966 "May 16 Notification" released, Mao's official justification for the Cultural Revolution
  • 1966 National Welfare Rights Organization organizes
  • 1966 Stokely Carmichael named chairman of Student Nonviolent Coordinating
  • 1967 Philalphia voters approve a $13 million bond issue to build a new stadium
  • 1968 Earthquake kills 47 in Japan
  • 1968 In the Stormont (Northern Ireland Parliament) by-election in the city of Londonderry (Derry) the Ulster Unionists retain the seat
  • 1969 Students occupies Magden House Amsterdam
  • 1969 US nuclear sub Guitarro sinks off San Francisco
  • 1969 USSR performs nuclear Test at Eastern Kazakh, Semipalitinsk USSR
  • 1969 Venera 5 lands on Venus, returns data on atmosphere
  • 1971 Bulgaria adopts its constitution
  • 1971 US 1st class postage now costs 8 cents (was 6 cents)
  • 1972 Phillies' Greg Luzinski's 500' HR hits Liberty Bell monument in Philadelphia Veteran's Stadium
  • 1974 Helmut Schmidt becomes West German Chancellor
  • 1974 USSR performs nuclear Test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • 1975 India annexes Principality of Sikkim
  • 1975 Junko Tabei from Japan becomes 1st woman to reach summit of Mt Everest
  • 1977 5 die as NY Airway helicopter topples on Pan Am building in NYC
  • 1980 Former Buggles members Geoff Downes & Trevor Horn replace Jon Anderson & Rick Wakeman in Yes
  • 1982 Columbia moves to Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center (Florida) for mating in preparation for STS-4
  • 1982 Salvador Jorge Blanco wins presidential election in Dominican Rep

Historic Event

1983 Chinese American architect I. M. Pei is awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize in New York

  • 1983 Lebanese parliament accepts peace accord with Israel
  • 1983 Sudan People's Liberation Army and Movement rebels against the Sudanese government
  • 1984 Guinea-Bissau adopts constitution
  • 1984 US performs nuclear Test at Nevada Test Site
  • 1985 Pope John Paul II arrives in Belgium
  • 1986 Joaquín Balaguers PRSC wins Dominican Rep parliamentary election

Historic Event

1986 South African President P. W. Botha sends Coetsee to visit Mandela

  • 1986 The Seville Statement on Violence is adopted by an international meeting of scientists, convened by the Spanish National Commission for UNESCO, in Seville, Spain.
  • 1987 "Bobro 400", a barge carrying 3,200 tons of garbage sets sail from NYC, beginning an unsuccessful 8 week search for a dumping site
  • 1988 US Supreme Court rules trash may be searched without a warrant
  • 1988 US Surgeon General C Everett Koop reports nicotine as addictive as heroin

Meeting of Interest

1989 Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev and Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping meet in Beijing and formally end a 30-year rift

  • 1990 Dominican Republic President Joaquín Ricardo Balaguer re-elected
  • 1991 Daily Planet fires cub reporter Jimmy Olson (fictional Superman character)

Historic Event

1991 Queen Elizabeth II becomes 1st British monarch to address US congress

  • 1992 Polls show Perot, Bush & Clinton could be in a deadlock
  • 1992 US space shuttle STS-49 lands (maiden voyage of Endeavour)
  • 1993 Farmer Sugeng finds 1.2 million year old Pithecanthropus IX skull
  • 1993 Judd Nelson pleads no contest to kicking Kim Evans in the head
  • 1993 Suleyman Demirel elected President of Turkey
  • 1994 Howard Stern Radio Show premieres in Orlando, Florida on WTKS 104.1 FM
  • 1994 Jacqueline Onassis admitted to hospital for cancer treatment
  • 1994 Joaquín Balaguer (86) elected President of Dominican Republic
  • 1995 Japanese police arrest cult leader Shoko Asahara & charged him with Nerve-gas attack on Tokyo's subways two months earlier
  • 1997 Final agreement creating Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC) signed by project participants, including Russia, Kazakhstan, Chevron Corp and others
  • 2003 Calcutta high court rules Calcutta does not have a birthday and that British East India employee Job Charnock is not the city's founder as previously claimed
  • 2003 In Casablanca, Morocco, 33 civilians are killed and more than 100 people are injured in terrorist attacks
  • 2004 Day of Mourning at Bykivnia forest, just outside of Kyiv, Ukraine where during 1930s and early 1940s communist bolsheviks executed over 100,000 Ukrainian civilians
  • 2005 Kuwait permits women's suffrage in a 35-23 National Assembly vote
  • 2006 A large earthquake (7.4 on the Richter scale) occurs near New Zealand
  • 2007 Alex Salmond is elected First Minister of Scotland. He is first Scottish National Party leader to be elected First Minister after winning a historic victory at the Scottish general election on the 3rd May.

Historic Event

2007 Nicolas Sarkozy becomes the 23rd President of France

Election of Interest

2009 India's General Election results announced: the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) under Manmohan Singh returned with an increased mandate

  • 2011 Space shuttle Endeavour launches on its final commission in space

Historic Event

2013 Bill Gates regains his position as the world's richest man with $72.7 billion after losing the position in 2008

  • 2013 Human stem cells are successfully cloned

Historic Event

2013 Pope Francis calls for ethical financial reform to fight speculation

  • 2017 10-year-old girl granted special 20 week abortion request in Rohtak, India in land-mark case
  • 2019 British people get drunk more than any other nation, 51 times year according to the Global Drug survey, with English-speaking countries drinking the most
  • 2019 New DNA research showing bedbugs are older than humans - 115 million years old and outlived dinosaurs, published in "Current Biology"
  • 2019 New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announces he is running for president, the 24th Democrat to run
  • 2019 South African Saray Khumalo is the first black African woman to climb Mt Evervest

Historic Event

2019 US President Donald Trump declares a national emergency over IT threats, banning US companies from using foreign technology without a license

Historic Event

2020 118-year old American department store JC Penney files for bankruptcy

  • 2021 Death toll passes 200 from Gaza conflict as 42 people killed in Israeli airstrikes and three building flattened [1]
  • 2021 Taiwan imposes tough restrictions against COVID-19 as a recent spike in cases threatens their up-to-now pandemic success [1]
  • 2022 Sri Lanka runs out of petrol, has only enough for one more day, has no cash to pay 1.4 million civil servants, says its newly appointed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe [1]
  • 2022 Sweden formally announces it will seek to join NATO after 200 years of neutrality, in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine
  • 2022 Ukraine declares an end to its combat mission in Mariupol, evacuating the last forces from the Azovstal steelworks, symbol of Ukrainian resistance [1]

Historic Event

2022 US President Joe Biden approves redeployment of several hundred US ground troops to Somalia, reversing a decision by President Donald Trump [1]