Today is Ohi (No) Day in Greece, marking that country's refusal in 1940 to submit to Italy and the Axis powers. (Italy then invaded Greece through Albania.)
Notable births on this day include Russian writer Ivan Turgenev (1818-1883); English-born novelist Anne Perry (born 1938); American actor Dennis Franz (born 1944); actress Annie Potts (1952); Monster Magnet singer Dave Wyndorf (born 1956); Joy Division and New Order drummer Stephen Morris (an Englishman now playing in the band Bad Lieutenant along with fellow Joy Division/New Order bandmate Bernard Sumner -- born 1957); Scottish musician William Reid (of The Jesus and Mary Chain -- born 1958); American actress Jami Gertz (born 1965); comic Andy Richter (born 1966); actress Julia Roberts (born 1967); American musician Ben Harper and Puerto-Rican born screenwriter and TV producer Javier Grillo-Marxuach (both born 1979); American country singer Brad Paisley (born 1972); Puerto Rican actor Joaquin Phoenix (born 1974); literate bonobo Kanzi (born 1980); and former Playmate Amanda Paige (born 1984, photos obviously NSFW).
Prominent people who've died on this date include English philosopher John Locke (1632-1704); American first lady Abigail Adams (1744-1818); and country singer Porter Wagoner (1927-2007).
Flashbacks, musical and otherwise:
The Universidad Santo Tomás de Aquino was established on this day in 1538, the first university in the New World, educating the plucky survivors who managed not to sail off the edge of the world or be eaten by dragons.
Not to be outdone, the Great and General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony (they were quite proud of their humility) voted this day in 1636 to establish the first college in the future United States, what is now Harvard University. So, now we know how far back to trace the precedents for lagging behind in abolition of slavery and capital punishment and electing female officials.
Symphony No. 6 in B Minor, "Pathétique," debuted on this date in 1893 in St. Petersburg, Russia, just nine days before composer Tchakovsky died.
American President Franklin D. Roosevelt rededicated the Statue of Liberty this day in 1936, its 50th anniversary.
The Alaska Highway, aka the ALCAN Highway, was completed this day in 1942, running through Canada up to Fairbanks, Alaska.
No. 1 hits from the pre-rock 'n' roll era include "White Christmas" by Bing Crosby (1942); "Pistol Packin' Mama" by Al Dexter (1943); and "Cold, Cold Heart" by Tony Bennett (1951).
The Netherlands reorganized as a federal monarchy on this day in 1955.
More hit singles: "Love Me Tender" by Elvis Presley (1956); "He's a Rebel" by The Crystals (1962); and "Baby Love" by The Supremes (1964).
The Second Vatican Council's document Nostra Aetate, or the Declaration on the Relation of the Church with Non-Christian Religions, was set forth by Pope Paul VI on this date in 1965. The statement absolved the Jews in the death of Jesus, reversing a condemnation issued 760 years earlier by Pope Innocent III, whose words led to much blood being shed by anti-Semites over the years. (They didn't rename the former pope "Not-So-Innocent," sadly.)
More earworms from the ages: "96 Tears" by ? and the Mysterians (1966) and "Suspicious Minds" by Elvis Presley (1969).
The United States Council for World Affairs announced this day in 1972 it would adopt as its official theme tune the song "Join Together" by The Who (one presumes "Who Are You" might have been too adversarial).
The Jam announced plans to split up at the end of its current U.K. tour on this day in 1982.
Look back in horror at these hits: "Who Can It Be Now?" by Men at Work (1982); "Islands in the Stream" by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton (and written by The Bee Gees -- 1983); "Caribbean Queen (No More Love on the Run)" by Billy Ocean (1984); "Part-Time Lover" by Stevie Wonder (1985); and "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice (1990). Ye Olde Podcaster thinks you could MAYBE make a case for the country duet, but the others ... the horror, the horror.
And on this date in 2005, Lewis "Scooter" Libby -- chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney -- was indicted in the Valerie Plame case and resigned later in the day. Rather than face capital punishment as a traitor, Libby was sentenced to jail for exposing the undercover CIA operative's identity and had that sentence commuted by President George W. Bush -- when Cheney should have ended up on death row alongside him. (And Ye Olde Podcaster doesn't even believe in capital punishment.)
Sources for stuff I didn't just make up: Wikipedia, This Day in Music.com, JoshHosler.biz.