1914 - At least 1,012 people were killed when the liner
Empress of Ireland collided with a Norwegian freighter on the St
Lawrence River in Canada.
1919 - The first pop-up electric toaster was patented by
American Charles Strite of Minnesota.
1953 - New Zealander Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing
Norgay reached the summit of Mount Everest, the first men to
scale the world's highest mountain. The feat was not reported to
a waiting world until June 1.
1979 - Mary Pickford, silent movie star, died.
1979 - Bishop Abel Muzorewa was sworn in as first black
prime minister of Zimbabwe Rhodesia, as the country was briefly
known prior to independence from Britain.
1985 - Thirty-nine soccer fans, mostly Italian, were crushed
to death in rioting involving Liverpool and Juventus supporters
at the European Cup Final in Brussels' Heysel stadium.
1994 - Erich Honecker, who ruled communist East Germany for
18 years and oversaw the building of the Berlin Wall, died in
exile in Chile. He was 81.
1997 - Laurent Kabila took office as president of the
Democratic Republic of Congo, promising to hold elections in
April 1999 and bury the legacy of dictator Mobutu Sese Seko.
1999 - Nigeria swore in elected President General Olusegun
Obasanjo after 15 years of military rule.
1999 - The U.S. space shuttle Discovery became the first
spacecraft to dock with the International Space Station.
2001 - A U.S. court convicted four followers of Saudi
dissident Osama Bin Laden over a plot to murder Americans
abroad, including 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa.
2002 - Britain appointed its first black cabinet minister,
Paul Boateng, to the number two position in the Treasury.
2002 - Mali's outgoing president, Alpha Oumar Konare,
pardoned former dictator Moussa Traore and his wife Mariam, who
were imprisoned after Traore was overthrown in 1991.
2003 - Nepal celebrated the 50th anniversary of the first
ascent of Everest with plans to make Sir Edmund Hillary, the man
who "knocked the bastard off", an honorary citizen.
2004 - Archibald Cox, the special Watergate prosecutor
whose firing by the White House ignited a political furor that
eroded support for President Richard Nixon, died. He was 92.
2004 - Samuel Dash, chief counsel for the House Judiciary
Committee that challenged President Richard Nixon's abuse of
executive power in the 1970s, died. He was 79.
2005 - France rejected the European Union's constitution in
a referendum, dealing a potentially fatal blow to a charter
designed to make the enlarged bloc run smoothly.