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On this day in history - November 16

What Happened On This Day – November 16

  • 2001 Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone released

    The film version of the popular book by the same name written by author J. K. Rowling starred Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter and followed Potter's first year at Hogwarts, a school for magic.

  • 1988 Estonians declare sovereignty from USSR

    Estonians issued the Estonian Sovereignty Declaration as part of the Singing Revolution. The Declaration declared Estonian sovereignty from the Soviet Union and declared Estonian laws paramount over Soviet laws. The day is now celebrated as the Day of Declaration of Sovereignty.

  • 1965 Soviets launch Venera 3

    Part of the Venera program, it was the first space probe to land on another planet - Venus. Unfortunately, due to technical issues, it was not able to send any data back to Earth. The first space probe to send data from another planet to Earth was Venera 7.

  • 1945 UNESCO founded

    The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a special branch of the United Nations which promotes peace and well-being through education, scientific collaboration and cultural understanding and exchange. It is headquartered in Paris, France and has 195 state members.

  • 1940 Warsaw ghetto sealed

    The largest Jewish ghetto in Nazi-occupied Poland, the Warsaw ghetto, was created in October 1940 by a German decree. According to the decree, all Jews in the city had to move to the ghetto, which was closed off by a 10 feet wall and had soldiers and police guarding it from the outside 24 hours a day. The ghetto was the scene of one of the largest Jewish uprisings during the Second World War in 1943.

Illustration of stork, signifying birth

Births On This Day,
November 16

  • 1977 Maggie Gyllenhaal

    American actress

  • 1952 Shigeru Miyamoto

    Japanese video game designer, created Mario, The Legend of Zelda

  • 1930 Chinua Achebe

    Nigerian author, poet, academic

  • 1922 José Saramago

    Portuguese author, Nobel Prize laureate

  • 42 Tiberius

    Roman Emperor

Illustration of tombstone, signifying death

Deaths On This Day,
November 16

  • 2006 Milton Friedman

    American economist, Nobel Prize laureate

  • 1980 Jayan

    Indian actor

  • 1960 Clark Gable

    American actor

  • 1885 Louis Riel

    Canadian politician

  • 1724 Jack Sheppard

    English criminal