1513 – Spanish explorer Vasco Nunez de Balboa reaches what would become known as the Pacific Ocean.
1690 – The first American newspaper, called Publick Occurrences, Both Foreign and Domestic, appeared in Boston.
1775 – Ethan Allen surrenders to British forces after attempting to capture Montreal during the Battle of Longue-Pointe.
1789 – Congress passes twelve amendments to the U.S. Constitution: The Congressional Apportionment Amendment (which was never ratified), the Congressional Compensation Amendment and the ten that are known as the Bill of Rights.
1957 – Under escort from the Army’s 101st Airborne Division, nine black students entered all-white Central High School in Little Rock, Ark.
1978 – Pacific Southwest Airlines Flight 182 crashed in San Diego after colliding with a small Cessna aircraft. The crash killed 144 people, including seven on the ground.
1981 – Sandra Day O’Connor was sworn in as the first female Supreme Court justice.
1992 – A judge in Florida granted a 12-year-old boy’s precedent-setting petition to “divorce” his mother.
2008 – Federal regulators seized Washington Mutual in what officials said was the biggest bank failure in U.S. history.