This Day in History

April 22


591      Patriarch of Antioch and head of the Syriac Orthodox Church Peter III of Raqqa dies, age unknown   1426
1500      Pedro Álvares Cabral officially discovers Brazil and claims the land for Portugal   517
1529      Treaty of Saragossa divides the eastern hemisphere between Spain and Portugal along a line 17° east of the Moluccas   488
1616      Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes tilts his last windmill dying in Madrid, age 68   401
1724      German philosopher Immanuel Kant born in Königsberg, Prussia   293
1778      English inventor James Hargreaves dies in Stanhill, Lancashire, age 58   239
1833      British inventor and mining engineer Richard Trevithick dies in Kent, England, age 62   184
1836      day after the victory at San Jacinto Santa Anna is captured by the Texians   181
1864      Congress passes the Coinage Act of 1864—mandates that the inscription "In God We Trust" be placed on U.S. coins   153
1876      first game in National League history is played when the Philadelphia Athletics host the Boston baseball club—Boston wins 6-5   141
1889      Oklahoma land rush begins at high noon   128
1898      USS Nashville captures a Spanish merchant ship as the U.S. Navy initiates a blockade of Cuba during the Spanish-American War   119
1912      first issue of Pravda is published in Saint Petersburg—official organ of the Central Committee of the Communist Party until closed in 1991   105
1915      first use of chemicals in warfare—Germans release chlorine gas against the allied lines defending Ypres, Belgium   102
1930      U.S., United Kingdom, Empire of Japan, France, and Italy sign the London Naval Treaty limiting naval shipbuilding   87
1933      English engineer and car designer, and co-founder of Rolls-Royce Frederick Henry Royce dies, age 70   84
1945      German mathematician and scientist Wilhelm Cauer dies in Berlin, age 44   72
1964      Disney's It's a Small World debuts in the 1964 New York World's Fair's UNICEF pavilion   53
1969      British yachtsman Robin Knox-Johnston completes the first solo non-stop circumnavigation of the world   48
1970      Earth Day initiated   47
1977      first live telephone traffic sent over fiber optic cables—General Telephone and Electronics in Long Beach, California   40
1980      German physicist Friedrich Wilhelm "Fritz" Strassmann dies in Mainz, age 78   37
1984      American wilderness photographer Ansel Adams dies, age 82   33
1989      Italian-American physicist and Nobel laureate Emilio Gino Segrà dies, age 84   28
1993      Mosaic, version 1.0, first major web browser is released by the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA)   24
1994      Richard Milhous Nixon, 37th president (1969-1974) and only president to resign, dies, age 81   23
2005      American physicist Philip Morrison dies, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, age 89   12
2006      U.S. computer programmer who developed the MARC format (Machine Readable Cataloging) Henriette Davidson Avram dies, age 86   11
2009      Rita Levi-Montalcini becomes first Nobel Prize recipient (Medicine) to live to 100   8
2010      U.S. Air Force launches unmanned X-37B reusable Orbital Test Vehicle   7
2013      American singer-songwriter and guitarist Richard (Richie) Pierce Havens dies, age 72   4
2014      Venezuelan painter and muralist Oswaldo Vigas dies in Caracas, age 90   3
2016      Isabelle Dinoire, the first person to undergo a partial face transplant in 2005, dies of cancer in Valenciennes, France, age about 49   1
2016      Mazda produces the one-millionth MX-5 Miata roadster after a continuous 27-year production run   1
2017      Cassini performs its 127th targeted and final encounter with Titan   0
2017      China's cargo spacecraft Tianzhou-1 successfully docks with prototype space station Tiangong-1   0

Dates are always somewhat ambiguous, the exact date depends on whether local time is used (and local time where) or Universal Time—for events on the surface of the Earth, local time is probably best but for an event that spans across the planet, it is not clear which local time to use!. For events in space it is more ambiguous. Further for dates after the original adoption of the Gregorian calendar but before it became accepted in different countries, the date given may be a Julian date or a Gregorian date depending upon where the event occurred. And, even the year may be different since the first of the year has not always been January 1 in all countries! The attempt is to use a date that is the one that is typically given.

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