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Flashback calendar

The Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant opens its doors to tourism

The Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant or Chernobyl Nuclear Power Station is a decommissioned nuclear power station near the city of Pripyat, Ukraine. Reactor Number 4 was the site of the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 and the power plant is now within a large restricted area known as the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.

Actor Charlie Murphy dies

Charles Quinton Murphy was an American actor, comedian, and writer. Murphy was best known as a writer and cast member of the Comedy Central sketch-comedy series Chappelle's Show, and as the costar of the sitcom Black Jesus. Murphy died from leukemia at the age of 57.

'Judith Beheading Holofernes' is discovered in Toulouse

A painting believed by some to be Caravaggio's second version of Judith Beheading Holofernes was discovered in Toulouse. An export ban was placed on the painting by the French government while tests were carried out to establish its authenticity.

'Captain America: Civil War' premieres in Los Angeles

Captain America: Civil War is a 2016 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character Captain America, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the sequel to 2011's Captain America: The First Avenger and 2014's Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

'An American in Paris' opens on Broadway

An American in Paris is a musical play inspired by the Academy Award-winning film of the same name and adapted for the stage by Christopher Wheeldon. It opened at the Palace Theatre on Broadway, following an engagement at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris. Incorporating songs from George and Ira Gershwin, the book is by Craig Lucas.

'Scary Movie 5' is released

Scary Movie 5 is a 2013 American horror comedy film. It is the fifth and final installment in the Scary Movie franchise. It is the second film to be distributed by The Weinstein Company under the Dimension Films brand. The film is directed by Malcolm D. Lee and written by David Zucker.

'Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage' is released

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is the thirteenth novel by Japanese writer Haruki Murakami. Seven days after the release, the book had been printed 8 times for a total of over one million copies in print, reportedly sold during the following month.

'Da Vinci's Demons' is released on Starz

Da Vinci's Demons is a historical fantasy drama series that presents a fictional account of Leonardo da Vinci's early life. The series was conceived by David S. Goyer and stars Tom Riley in the title role. It was developed and produced in collaboration with BBC Worldwide and was shot in Wales.

Hyperinflation forced Zimbabwe to abandon the Zimbabwean dollar

The Zimbabwean dollar was the official currency of Zimbabwe from 1980 to 2009, when its use was abandoned. In place of the Zimbabwean dollar, currencies including the South African rand, Botswana pula, pound sterling, Indian rupee, euro, Japanese yen, Australian dollar, Chinese yuan, and the US dollar are now used.

The Oslo Opera House opens

The gala opening was attended by His Majesty King Harald, Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and President Tarja Halonen of Finland and other leaders. During the first year of operation, 1.3 million people passed through the building's doors. The Opera House won the culture award at the World Architecture Festival in Barcelona and the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture.


Chris Chelios sets an NHL record appearing in his 22nd playoffs

Christos Kostas "Chris" Chelios is a retired American professional ice hockey defenseman. He was one of the longest-tenured players in the National Hockey League. In April 2007, he became the oldest defenseman to score a short-handed goal in the NHL in a playoff game against the Calgary Flames.

Iraqi Parliament bombing

The canteen of the Council of Representatives of Iraq building was attacked by a suicide bomber, killing one to eight people and wounding 23 others. It was on the first floor of the Baghdad Convention Center, which houses the parliament. Two further unexploded suicide vests were found near the canteen.

Broadway revival 'Bells Are Ringing' opens

Bells Are Ringing is a musical with a book and lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green and music by Jule Styne. The story revolves around Ella, who works at an answering service, and the characters that she meets there. A Broadway revival, directed by Tina Landau and choreographed by Jeff Calhoun, opened at the Plymouth Theatre in 2001.


Detroit Red Wings set an NHL record for wins in a season

The 1996–97 Detroit Red Wings season was the 71st National Hockey League season in Detroit, Michigan. The highlight of the Red Wings season was winning the Stanley Cup, they're first since 1955. The Red Wings have also set a new NHL record for most wins in a season.

The Euro Disney Resort officially opens

It was the second Disney resort to open outside the United States, following Tokyo Disney Resort and the first to be owned and operated by Disney. Disneyland Paris underwent a name change to Disneyland Resort Paris in March that year.

'A Streetcar Named Desire' returns to Broadway

A Streetcar Named Desire is a play written by Tennessee Williams that dramatises the life of Blanche DuBois. A highly publicized revival in 1992 starred Alec Baldwin as Stanley and Jessica Lange as Blanche. It was staged at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, the same theatre that the original production was staged in.


Championship boxer Sugar Ray Robinson dies

Sugar Ray Robinson was an American professional boxer who competed from 1940 to 1965. He was diagnosed with diabetes mellitus that was treated with insulin. In Robinson's last years, he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. He died in Los Angeles at the age of 67 and was interred in the Inglewood Park Cemetery, Inglewood, California.

First genetically modified animal is patented

Biologists Philip Leder and Timothy Stewart created a mouse highly susceptible to cancer, which makes the mouse suitable for research. Susceptibility is caused by specific variant of a gene called HRAST. The mouse itself is called the OncoMouse. The rights to the invention were owned by DuPont.

Author Alan Paton dies

Paton was a South African author and anti-apartheid activist. His works include the novels Cry, the Beloved Country and Too Late the Phalarope. Paton volunteered for service during World War II but was refused. He formed the Liberal Association in early 1953.

First Space Shuttle Launch

Brand new American Space Shuttle flew to the orbit for the first time. It carried a crew of two, mission commander John W. Young and pilot Robert L. Crippen. It was the first American manned space flight since the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project in 1975. The launch occurred on the 20th anniversary of the first-ever human spaceflight.


Heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis dies

Joseph Louis Barrow, best known as Joe Louis and nicknamed the "Brown Bomber", was an American professional boxer who competed from 1934 to 1951. Louis died of cardiac arrest in Desert Springs Hospital near Las Vegas in April 1981, just hours after his last public appearance viewing the Larry Holmes–Trevor Berbick Heavyweight Championship.


Terry Fox begins his 'Marathon of Hope' at St. John's, Newfoundland

He dipped his artificial leg in the muddy waters of St John’s harbour in the Atlantic Ocean and set off on the greatest adventure of his life. A police escort and a small crowd witness the departure of Terry and his van, which carries eight pairs of running shoes, three extra legs and various spare parts.


The last game for the Flames in Atlanta

Tom Cousins announced he was seeking to sell the club following the Flames' exit from the playoffs. Their final game, a 5–2 loss against the New York Rangers, was played in Atlanta in 1980. He claimed to have suffered significant financial losses on the team while low viewership hampered his ability to sign a television contract.


US Olympic boycott of the Moscow Olympic games

The 1980 Summer Olympics boycott was one part of a number of actions initiated by the United States to protest the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The Soviet Union, which hosted the 1980 Summer Olympics, and other countries would later boycott the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

Ronald Wayne sells his 10 percent share in the company for just $800

After Ronald Wayne, Steve Jobs, and Steve Wozniak founded Apple Computer, Wayne received a 10% stake in Apple. Less than two weeks later, he relinquished his equity for US$800, and he let go of that valuable Apple stock, which has exploded in value since.

Yuri Gagarin becomes the first man to fly in space

The Vostok 1 spacecraft with Gagarin aboard was launched from Baikonur Cosmodrome. Gagarin thus became both the first human to travel into space, and the first to orbit the Earth. His call sign was Kedr. Vostok 1 marked his only spaceflight, but he served as backup crew to the Soyuz 1 mission.

US President Franklin D. Roosevelt dies

After returning from the Yalta Conference, Roosevelt looked old and frail. His health got worse as the time passed. He died at his personal retreat, Little White House, located in the Historic District of Warm Springs, Georgia. According to the attending cardiologist, the president died due to massive cerebral hemorrhage.

'Rebecca' premieres in Miami, Florida

Rebecca is an American romantic psychological thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The film stars Laurence Olivier as the brooding, aristocratic widower Maxim de Winter, and Joan Fontaine as the young woman who becomes his second wife, with Judith Anderson and George Sanders in supporting roles.

Shanghai massacre

The Shanghai massacre of 1927, was the violent suppression of Communist Party of China organizations in Shanghai by the military forces of Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek and conservative factions in the Kuomintang. Following the incident, conservative KMT elements carried out a full-scale purge of Communists in all areas under their control.

American paleontologist Edward Drinker Cope dies

Cope described many famous dinosaur species, like Camarasaurus, Amphicoelias or Coelophysis. He wrote around 1 400 papers during his lifetime. He raced in discovering new fossils with another famous paleontologist Charles Marsh. Their competition is called the Bone Wars. Cope founded a thought school Neo-Lamarckism.


Catcher's mask is used for the first time

In a baseball game between Harvard students and the Live Oaks, the curve ball was all the rage and Harvard catcher James Tyng was taking a beating behind home plate. He became the first man to wear a catcher’s mask in a professional game. The reaction in the media was diverse.

The Battle of Fort Pillow

Union deployed black men as US soldiers in Battle of Fort Pillow. It took place on the Mississippi River in Henning, Tennessee. Roughly 600 Union soldiers were led by commanders Booth and Bradford against a stronger Confederate army. African-American Union troops and their officers were massacred as they attempted to surrender.

The Battle of Fort Sumter

Fort Sumter near Charleston was bombarded by Confederate States army. Commanding officer Beauregard led huge amount of Confederate forces against 85 fort defenders, led by Robert Anderson. The battle resulted in Confederate victory and surrendering of the fort by US Army. It was also the beginning of the American Civil War.

American librarian John Shaw Billings is born

Billings was the first director of the New York Public Library and modernizer of the Library of the Surgeon General's Office. In his early years, he was a surgeon and a statistician on medicine in the U.S. Army. He was profoundly interested in advancing knowledge by creating libraries and improving access to books.

Anniversaries of the (in)famous