1620 - The Mayflower set sail for the New World.
1843 - Tivoli Gardens, one of the oldest still intact amusement parks in the world, opened in Copenhagen. 1914 - The Panama Canal opened to traffic.
1941 - Corporal Josef Jakobs was executed by firing squad at the Tower of London at 07.12; the last person to be executed at the Tower for espionage.
1945 - Allied Nations celebrated VJ Day, Victory over Japan.
1947 - India and Pakistan gained independence, after 200 years of British rule.
1951 - Dartmoor was designated a National Park.
1952 - A flash flood drenched the Devon town of Lynmouth, killing 34 people.
1962 - Drummer Pete Best played his last gig with The Beatles, at the Cavern Club.
1987 - Caning was officially banned in British schools.
1997 - Jennifer Murray became the first woman to circumnavigate the globe in a helicopter.
1998 - A bomb blast in the Northern Ireland town of Omagh killed 29 people.