(1624) Britain’s first Caribbean colony is founded on St. Kitts
Citing abundant salt deposits and friendly natives, Sir Thomas Warner establishes a colony on St. Kitts Island. Within 16 years the natives will be killed or exiled, and African slaves imported to work newly planted sugar cane plantations.
(1813) ‘Pride and Prejudice’ published
Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy begin their hold on the public imagination as Jane Austen’s novel of manners and morays is published in London. Its 200th anniversary in 2013 will be celebrated by fans around the world.
(1945) Japanese ‘Burma Road’ blockade broken
WWII Allied forces reopen part of the Burma Road, a 717-mile supply route between Burma’s coast to Kunming, China after a three-year Japanese blockade, allowing China to again receive vital materials.
(1986) Challenger space shuttle explodes after liftoff
Seven crew, including schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe, die when the Challenger space shuttle explodes 73 seconds after liftoff from Cape Canaveral, Florida. A single faulty ‘O-ring’ will be identified as the cause of the explosion.