American director Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman to win an Academy Award for best director, for The Hurt Locker (2008).
American director and writer Stanley Kubrick—whose iconic films are characterized by a cool, formal visual style, meticulous attention to detail, and a detached, often ironic pessimism—died in England.
American boxer Mike Tyson became the youngest heavyweight to acquire the World Boxing Association (WBA) championship belt when he defeated James Smith in 12 rounds.
West Indian cricketer Viv Richards, who earned the nickname “Master Blaster” as arguably the finest batsman of his generation, was born in Antigua.
Alexander Graham Bell received a patent for the telephone.
Composer Maurice Ravel, who was noted for his musical craftsmanship and perfection of form and style, was born in Ciboure, France.
Painter Piet Mondrian—who was an important leader in the development of modern abstract art and is known for works that possess a formal purity that embodies his spiritual belief in a harmonious cosmos—was born in Amersfoort, Netherlands.
U.S. Senator Daniel Webster spoke out in favour of the Compromise of 1850 (enacted in September), a series of moderate measures that addressed the question of slavery in U.S. territories.
English astronomer Sir John Herschel, a successor to his father, Sir William Herschel, in the field of stellar and nebular observation and discovery, was born.
Massachusetts established the first bicameral legislature in North America.
Marcus Aurelius became emperor of Rome.