Return Today in the History of Pioneers, Explorers, Aviators and Historic Firsts Return


Persons of Historic Significance Who Have Died on This Date
1520 Ferdinand Magellan Reaches the Pacific Ocean on His Circumnavigation of the Earth Ferdinand Magellan Explorers Naval History Library of Congress History Channel
1659 Christian Huygens Is First to Record Markings on the Face of Mars Christian Huygens Space and Astronomy Mars Historic Firsts NASA
1723 Johann Sebastian Bach's Sacred Cantata No. 61 Is First Performed in Leipzig, Germany Johann Sebastian Bach Composers Historic Firsts American Public Media
1785 John Rice Jones Is Appointed as the First Mail Carrier in Indiana for Deliveries Between Louisville and Vincennes Louisville, Kentucky Vincennes, Indiana U.S. Postal Service Historic Firsts State of Indiana
1811 Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 5 Is First Performed by the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig, Germany Ludwig van Beethoven Composers Classical Music Historic Firsts American Public Media
1863 Thanksgiving Is First Observed as an Official U.S. Holiday Thanksgiving Historic Firsts Concordia
1895 J. Frank Duryea Wins the First Auto Race in America: Chicago to Evanston and Back Fank Duryea Automobile Racing Historic Firsts Library of Congress
Rimsky-Korsakov's Opera "Christmas Eve" Is First Performed in St. Petersburg Rimsky-Korsakov Composers Opera Historic Firsts American Public Media
1896 Mussorgsky's Opera "Boris Godunov" Is First Performed in St. Petersburg Modest Mussorgsky Composers Opera Historic Firsts American Public Media
1901 The University of Wisconsin Defeats the University of Chicago, 35-0, to Finish a 9-0 Undefeated Football Season University of Wisconsin University of  Chicago Football Historic Firsts Wisconsin Historical Society
1909 Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 3 Is First Performed in Carnegie Hall by the New York Symphony Society Orchestra Carnegie Hall Rachmaninov Classical Musicians Composers Historic Firsts American Public Media
1916 German Seaplane Conducts First Air Raid of Britain by a Fixed-winged Aircraft World War I Aviation History Historic Firsts British RAF
1919 American-born Nancy Astor Is Elected as Britain's First Female Member of Parliament Virginia Political and Social Leaders British Political and Social Leaders Women Elections Historic Firsts History Channel
1925 The Grand Ole Opry Debuts in Nashville, Tennessee as "The WSM Barn Dance" Tennessee Country & Western Music Historic Firsts Grand Ole Opry History Channel
1943 Ernie Nevers Is the First Professional Football Player to Score 6 TDs in One Game Minnesota Sports Figures Professional Football Hall of Fame Historic Firsts ESPN
1951 14 Athletes Are the First Inductees into the Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame Wisconsin Sports Figures Sports Historic Firsts Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame Wisconsin Historical Society
1961 Ernie Davis Is the First African American Selected for the Heisman Trophy Ernie Davis Heisman Trophy African American Sports Figures Historic Firsts African American Registry
1964 NASA Launches Mariner 4 the First Successful Mars Flyby Mission Space Exploration Mars NASA
1965 NASA Launches Explorer 31 to Collect Ionosphere Measurements Space Exploration Earth & Environmental Science NASA
1983 Space Shuttle (STS-9) Carries the First Spacelab Module into Orbit Space Shuttle NASA

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