On this date in history:
In 1805, in one of history’s greatest naval battles, the British fleet under Adm. Horatio Nelson defeated the combined French-Spanish fleet at Trafalgar off the coast of Spain.
In 1879, after 14 months of experiments, Thomas Edison invented the first practical electric incandescent lamp.
In 1908, The Saturday Evening Post magazine carried an ad for a brand new product: a two-sided phonograph record.
In 1948, Western Allies decided to withdraw their condemnation of Russia as a threat to peace on the condition that the Berlin blockade was lifted, accepting a small-nation formula as a “hopeful basis” for solving the Berlin crisis.
In 1950, Chinese troops occupied Tibet.
In 1959, rocket designer Wernher von Braun and his team were transferred from the U.S. Army to the newly created National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
In 1959, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum opened in New York City. The building, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, is considered one of the finest examples of architecture in the 20th century.
In 1983, Grenada’s newly installed military rulers sought to consolidate control as 1,900 Marines steamed toward the Cuban-backed island following a week-old coup that left as many as 15 people dead.
In 1991, Beirut University professor Jesse Turner, a hostage since January 1987, was released by his captors in Lebanon.
In 1994, Rosario Ames, wife of confessed spy Aldrich Ames, was sentenced to 63 months in prison for collaborating with him.
In 1996, the Dow Jones industrial average of 30 major stocks topped the 6,000 mark for the first time.
In 2004, the most senior soldier accused in the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal in Iraq, Staff Sgt. Ivan “Chip” Frederick, was sentenced to eight years in prison. He was released on parole in 2007.
In 2010, a U.S. government report indicated that the mortgage-financing enterprises known as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, already recipients of $148 billion in federal bailout funds, might need $200 billion more to stay solvent through 2013.
In 2011, U.S. President Barack Obama announced the United States would withdraw all troops from Iraq at the end of the year and engage in a “normal relationship” with the nation. “After nearly nine years,” Obama said, “America’s war in Iraq will be over.”
In 2013, Jim Leyland, 68, long considered one of Major League Baseball’s top managers, announced he was retiring as manager of the Detroit Tigers but would stay with the club in another capacity. Leyland took the Tigers to three division titles and two AL pennants and led the Florida Marlins to the World Series championship in 1997.
In 2014, South African Olympian sprinter Oscar Pistorius received a five-year prison sentence for fatally shooting his girlfriend. He was released to house arrest less than a year later, but in 2016, he was re-sentenced upon appeal by prosecutors and returned to prison.