April 4 is the 94th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (95th in leap years). There are 271 days remaining.
1581 - Francis Drake completes a circumnavigation of the world and is knighted by Elizabeth I.
1721 - Sir Robert Walpole enters office as the first Prime Minister of the United Kingdom under King George I.
1812 - U.S. President James Madison enacted a ninety-day embargo on trade with the United Kingdom.
1814 - Napoleon abdicates for the first time.
1818 - The U.S. Congress adopts the flag of the United States as having 13 red and white stripes and one star for each state (20 stars) with additional stars to be added whenever a new state is added to the Union.
1841 - President William Henry Harrison dies of pneumonia becoming the first President of the United States to die in office and at one month, the elected president with the shortest term served.
1850 - Los Angeles, California is incorporated as a city.
1865 - American Civil War: A day after Union forces captured Richmond, Virginia, U.S. President Abraham Lincoln visits the Confederate capital.
1866 - Alexander II of Russia narrowly escapes an assassination attempt in the city of Kiev. A design for a city gate to commemorate his escape was the inspiration for Mussorgsky's The Great Gate of Kiev from .
Pictures at an Exhibition 1887 - Argonia, Kansas elects Susanna M. Salter as the first female mayor in the United States.
1905 - In India, an earthquake near Kangra kills 370,000.
1918 - World War I: Second Battle of the Somme ends.
1939 - Faisal II becomes King of Iraq.
1945 - World War II: American troops liberate Ohrdruf death camp in Germany.
1945 - World War II: Soviet Army liberates Hungary.
1949 - Twelve nations sign The North Atlantic Treaty creating the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
1964 - The Beatles occupy all of the top five positions on the Billboard singles chart in the United States.
1968 - Martin Luther King Jr. assassinated.
1968 - Apollo program: NASA launches Apollo 6.
1969 - Dr. Denton Cooley implants the first temporary artificial heart.
1969 - The is cancelled after the brothers failed to submit an episode before its broadcast date.
Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour 1973 - The World Trade Center in New York is officially dedicated.
1975 - Vietnam War: Operation Baby Lift - A United States Air Force C-5A Galaxy crashes near Saigon, South Vietnam shortly after takeoff, transporting orphans. 172 people are killed.
1976 - Prince Norodom Sihanouk resigns as leader of Cambodia and is placed under house arrest.
1979 - President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto of Pakistan is executed.
1981 - In Dublin, Ireland, Bucks Fizz win the twenty-sixth Eurovision Song Contest for the United Kingdom singing "Making Your Mind Up".
1983 - Space Shuttle makes its maiden voyage into space.
Challenger 1984 - President Ronald Reagan calls for an international ban on chemical weapons.
1991 - Senator John Heinz of Pennsylvania and six others are killed when a helicopter collides with their plane over Merion, Pennsylvania.
1994 - Netscape Communications Corporation is founded (under the name "Mosaic Communications Corporation") by Marc Andreessen and Jim Clark.
186 - Caracalla, Roman emperor (d. 217)
1648 - Grinling Gibbons master wood-worker (d. 1721)
1785 - Bettina von Arnim, German lyricist (d. 1859)
1802 - Dorothea Dix, American social activist (d. 1887)
William Jackson , photographer
John Venn, mathematician
1846 - Comte de Lautréamont, French writer (d. 1870)
1870 - George Albert Smith, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (d. 1951)
1875 - Pierre Monteux, French conductor (d. 1964)
1876 - Maurice de Vlaminck, painter (d. 1958)
1884 - Isoroku Yamamoto, Japanese naval commander (d. 1943)
1885 - Arthur Murray, dancer (d. 1991)
1888 - Tris Speaker, Baseball Hall of Famer (d. 1958)
1895 - Arthur Murray, American dance teacher (d. 1991)
1898 - Agnes Ayres , silent film actress (d. 1940)
1902 - Louise Leveque de Vilmorin, actress (d. 1969)
1906 - Bea Benaderet, actress (d. 1968)
1906 - John Cameron Swayze , journalist, television host (d. 1995)
1910 - Juri Pawlowitsch German , writer (d. 1967)
1914 - Marguerite Duras, writer (d. 1996)
1914 - Frances Langford , American actress
1915 - Muddy Waters, blues musician (d. 1983)
1920 - Eric Rohmer, French film director
1922 - Elmer Bernstein, composer
1924 - Gil Hodges, American baseball player (d. 1972)
1928 - Maya Angelou, poet, novelist
1931 - Bobby Ray Inman, American Admiral, intelligence director
1932 - Anthony Perkins, actor (d. 1992)
1932 - Andrei Tarkovsky, film director (d. 1986)
1932 - Richard Lugar, American politician
1934 - Clive Davis, American record producer
1934 - Anne Haney , American actress (d. 2001)
1938 - A. Bartlett Giamatti, president of Yale Univ. and baseball commissioner
1939 - Hugh Masekela, musician
1940 - Sharon Sheeley, songwriter
1942 - Kitty Kelley, American writer, biographer
1944 - Craig T. Nelson, actor
1945 - Daniel Cohn-Bendit, political activist
1946 - Dave Hill, Slade, guitarist
1947 - Luke Halpin , American actor
1947 - Wiranto, Indonesian general
1948 - Dan Simmons, writer
1948 - Abdullah Öcalan, Kurdish leader
1950 - Christine Lahti, actress
1951 - Hun Sen, Prime Minister of Cambodia
1952 - Rosemarie Ackermann, German high jumper
1956 - David E. Kelley, writer, television producer
1957 - Aki Kaurismäki, Finnish film-director
1958 - Mary-Margaret Humes, American soap opera actress
1960 - Jane Eaglin, English soprano
1960 - Hugo Weaving, actor
1963 - Jack Del Rio, American football player and coach
1963 - Graham Norton, talk show host
1965 - Robert Downey Jr., actor
1970 - Barry Pepper, actor
1973 - David Blaine, illusionist
1974 - Dave Mirra, extreme sports champion
1975 - Scott Rolen, baseball player
1979 - Heath Ledger, actor
1979 - Natasha Lyonne, American actress
1980 - Björn Wirdheim, racing driver
1991 - Jamie Spears, television show host
397 - St. Ambrose, bishop of Milan (b. c. 340)
1292 - Pope Nicholas IV (b. 1227)
1305 - Jeanne of Navarre, queen of Philip IV of France
1701 - Joseph Haines, entertainer and author
1774 - Oliver Goldsmith, playwright (b. 1728)
1807 - Joseph Jérôme Lefrançais de Lalande French astronomer
1817 - André Masséna, French soldier (b. 1758)
1841 - William Henry Harrison, 9th President of the United States (b. 1773)
1842 - Jean Moufot, French philosopher and mathematician (b. 1784)
1846 - Solomon Sibley, Senator, Michigan Territory, 1820- 1823 (b. 1769)
1861 - John McLean, U.S. Supreme Court justice (b. 1785)
1884 - Marie Bashkirtseff, artist (b. 1860)
1919 - Sir William Crookes, chemist and physicist (b. 1832)
1951 - Al Christie, early Hollywood director/producer (b. 1881)
1951 - George Albert Smith, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (b. 1870)
1968 - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., civil rights activist, minister (b. 1929)
1972 - Adam Clayton Powell Jr., American politician
1972 - Stefan Wolpe, composer (b. 1902)
1979 - Ali Bhutto, President and Prime Minister of Pakistan (b. 1928)
1979 - Edgar Buchanan, American actor
1980 - Red Sovine , country music entertainer
1983 - Gloria Swanson, actress (b. 1897)
1984 - Oleg Antonov, Soviet airplane engineer
1987 - C.L. Moore, science fiction writer (b. 1911)
1991 - H. John Heinz III, Member of the U.S. Senate in a plane crash (b. 1938)
1991 - Forrest Towns, American hurdler (b. 1914)
1995 - Priscilla Lane, American singer, actress
1996 - Barney Ewell, American athlete (b. 1918)
1996 - Larry LaPrise, songwriter (b. 1913)
1999 - Early Wynn, Baseball Hall of Famer (b. 1920)
2001 - Ed "Big Daddy" Roth, custom car designer
2002 - Harry L. O'Connor, film stuntman
2003 - Resortes, Mexican comedian
Holidays and observances
April 3 - April 5 - March 4 - May 4 -- listing of all days
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