1955 : Rosa Parks's refusal to relinquish her bus seat : This day in 1955, in violation of segregation laws in Montgomery, Alabama, Rosa Parks refused to surrender her bus seat to a white passenger and was arrested, sparking a 381-day bus boycott led by Martin Luther King, Jr.
2000 : Vicente Fox was inaugurated as president of Mexico, ending the dominance of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, which had ruled since 1929.
1959 : The Antarctic Treaty was signed by 12 countries, making the Antarctic continent a demilitarized zone to be preserved for scientific research.
1925 : Germany, France, Belgium, Great Britain, and Italy signed the Pact of Locarno, a series of agreements intended to guarantee peace in western Europe.
1825 : Russian Emperor Alexander I died unexpectedly in southern Russia.
1814 : General Andrew Jackson, commander of the U.S. Army of the Southwest, hastened to defend New Orleans, Louisiana, against British invasion; a series of skirmishes over the next few weeks culminated in the Battle of New Orleans.