1780: British forces capture Charleston in South Carolina during the American Revolutionary War. It’s the largest defeat of the Continental Army.
1784: The Treaty of Paris – which was signed in September of 1783 – takes effect on this day.
1797: During the War of the First Coalition, Venice is captured by Napoleon I of France.
1846: Leaving Independence, Missouri for a new life in California, the Donner Party heads out today. Their year long journey will be filled with hardship and end with cannibalism.
1862: Baton Rouge in Louisiana is occupied by United States Federal forces during the American Civil War.
1864: Thousands of Confederate and Union soldiers die during at the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House during the American Civil War.
1865: The Confederates win at the Battle of Palmito Ranch during the American Civil War.
1941: The Z3 electromechanical computer is introduced in Berlin in Germany by Konrad Zuse. It’s considered to be the world’s first programmable automatic computer.
1942: The German submarine U-507 fires a torpedo at the SS Virginia at the mouth of the Mississippi River during World War 2.
1949: Russia lifts its blockade of the German city of Berlin.
2008: Almost 70,000 people are killed when an earthquake hits Sichuan, China.
2008: The largest-ever raid of a workplace occurs in Postville, Iowa when the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency arrest almost four hundred immigrants for document fraud and identity theft.
2017: Over four hundred thousand computers are attacked by a ransom-ware attack that was targeting U.K National Health Services and Telefónica computer systems.
Famous Birthdays on May 12
Italian-English nurse and social reformer, Florence Nightingale is born in 1820.
English poet and painter, Dante Gabriel Rossetti is born in 1828.
American explorer Lincoln Ellsworth is born in 1880.
Canadian-American chemist and Nobel Prize laureate, William Giauque is born in 1895.
American actress Katharine Hepburn is born in 1907.
American baseball player, coach and manager, Yogi Berra is born in 1925.
American painter and sculptor, Frank Stella is born in 1936.
American comedian, actor and author, George Carlin is born in 1937.