570: Muhammed, founder of Islam, was born this date, according to the Shi’a sect. (Other sources suggest April 20.)

1918Dutch Olympian Fanny Blankers-Koen (1918-2004), who blazed a trail for women athletes, is honoured with Google Doodle on her 100th birthday!

1923: Prince Albert, Duke of York, marries Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon. He later becomes King George VI. She becomes Queen Elizabeth, and later the Queen Mother, after her husband’s death in 1952.

1933The Gestapo, the official secret police force of Nazi Germany, is established.

1977: Studio 54 opens in New York.

1986: The worst nuclear disaster in history occurs in Chernobyl. At first, the Soviets deny the accident occurred. But the usually secretive Soviet Union backtracks, confirming that a reactor at the Chornobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine is damaged. (Note: At the time, most western media sources spelled the plant’s name according to the Russian transliteration: Chernobyl. Since the breakup of the Soviet Union, many have switched to the Ukrainian transliteration, Chornobyl.)

1994: South African citizens of all races are allowed to vote in a general election for the first time, precisely 44 years after Apartheid was formalized by the government with the passing of the Group Areas Act.

1994: Germany makes Holocaust denial illegal.

2005Syria withdraws the last of its military troops from Lebanon, ending its 29-year military occupation of that country.