In 1790, the U.S. Supreme Court convened in New York City for its first session.
In 1861, Texas seceded from the United States.
In 1865, U.S. President Abraham Lincoln signed the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which abolished slavery.
In 1896, Giacomo Puccini's opera La Boheme premiered in Turin, Italy.
In 1946, Norwegian Trygve Lie of Norway was selected to be the first U.N. secretary-general.
In 1968, the communist Viet Cong began a major offensive of the Vietnam War with a fierce attack on the South Vietnamese city of Hue.
In 1979, Ayatollah Khomeini, symbol of the Iranian revolution, returned to his homeland.
In 1991, South African President F.W. De Klerk announced that he would seek repeal of key laws on which the apartheid system was based.
Also in 1991, at least 1,200 people were killed in an earthquake that struck Afghanistan and Pakistan.
And in 1991, 34 people were killed and 24 more injured when a USAir jet hit a SkyWest plane on a runway at Los Angeles International Airport.