In 1509, theologian John Calvin, a key figure of the Protestant Reformation, was born in Noyon, Picardy, France.
In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson personally delivered the Treaty of Versailles to the Senate and urged its ratification. (However, the Senate rejected it.)In 1925, jury selection took place in Dayton, Tenn., in the trial of John T. Scopes, charged with violating the law by teaching Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. (Scopes was convicted and fined, but the verdict was overturned on a technicality.)
In 1929, American paper currency was reduced in size as the government began issuing bills that were about 25% smaller.
In 1940, during World War II, the Battle of Britain began as the Luftwaffe started attacking southern England. (The Royal Air Force was ultimately victorious.)
In 1951, armistice talks aimed at ending the Korean War began at Kaesong.
In 1973, the Bahamas became fully independent after three centuries of British colonial rule. John Paul Getty III, the teenage grandson of the oil tycoon, was abducted in Rome by kidnappers who cut off his ear when his family was slow to meet their ransom demands; Getty was released in December 1973 for nearly $3 million.
In 1979, conductor Arthur Fiedler, who had led the Boston Pops orchestra for a half-century, died in Brookline, Mass., at age 84.
In 1985, bowing to pressure from irate customers, the Coca-Cola Co. said it would resume selling old-formula Coke, while continuing to sell New Coke.
In 1991, Boris N. Yeltsin took the oath of office as the first elected president of the Russian republic. President George H.W. Bush lifted economic sanctions against South Africa.
In 1999, the United States women’s soccer team won the World Cup, beating China 5-4 on penalty kicks after 120 minutes of scoreless play at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California.
In 2002, the House approved, 310-113, a measure to allow airline pilots to carry guns in the cockpit to defend their planes against terrorists (President George W. Bush later signed the measure into law).
In 2004, President George W. Bush said in his weekly radio address that legalizing gay marriage would redefine the most fundamental institution of civilization, and that a constitutional amendment was needed to protect traditional marriage.
In 2009, General Motors completed an unusually quick exit from bankruptcy protection with promises of making money and building cars people would be eager to buy. Pope Benedict XVI stressed the Catholic church’s opposition to abortion and embryonic stem cell research in his first meeting with President Barack Obama at the Vatican. British conductor Sir Edward Downes, 85, almost blind and growing deaf, and his terminally ill wife, Joan, 74, ended their lives together at an assisted suicide clinic in Zurich, Switzerland.
In 2014, Germany demanded that the CIA station chief in Berlin leave the country as a new round of allegations of U.S. espionage worsened friction between the two allies.