April 5 is the 95th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (96th in leap years). There are 270 days remaining.
- 1242 - During a battle on the ice of Chudskoye Lake, Russian forces rebuff an invasion attempt by the Teutonic Knights.
- 1614 - In Virginia, Native American Pocahontas marries English colonist John Rolfe.
- 1621 - The Mayflower sets sail from Plymouth on a return trip to Great Britain.
- 1654 - Signing of the Treaty of Westminster, ending the First Anglo-Dutch War.
- 1792 - U.S. President George Washington vetos a bill designed to apportion representatives among U.S. states. This is the first time the presidential veto has been used in the United States.
- 1804 - The first recorded meteorite falls in Possil, Scotland (High Possil Meteorite).
- 1862 - American Civil War: Battle of Yorktown - The battle begins when Union forces under General George McClellan close in on the Confederate capital Richmond, Virginia.
- 1923 - Firestone Tire and Rubber Company starts production of balloon-tires.
- 1930 - In an act of civil disobedience, Mohandas Gandhi breaks British law after marching to the sea and making salt.
- 1936 - Tupelo-Gainesville Outbreak: A F5 tornado slams into the north side of Tupelo, Mississippi killing 233. It is the 4th deadliest tornado in U.S. history.
- 1945 - Cold War: Yugoslav leader Josip "Tito" Broz signs an agreement with the USSR allowing "temporary entry of Soviet troops into Yugoslav territory."
- 1949 - Fireside Theatre debuts on television.
- 1949 - A fire in a hospital in Effingham, Illinois kills 77 people.
- 1951 - Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are sentenced to death for performing espionage for the Soviet Union.
- 1955 - Winston Churchill resigns as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom amid indications of failing health.
- 1957 - In India, Communists won the first elections in united Kerala and E. M. S. Namboodiripad sworn in as the first chief minister.
- 1969 - Vietnam War: Massive antiwar demonstrations are held in New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., and other cities around the United States.
- 1972 - Vietnam War: North Vietnamese forces invade Binh Long Province , launching a second front of the Nguyen Hue Offensive .
- 1973 - Pierre Messmer becomes Prime Minister of France
- 1976 - In the People's Republic of China, the April Fifth Movement led to the Tiananmen incident.
- 1991 - ASA Embraer EMB 120 crashes in Brunswick, Georgia killing all 23 aboard.
- 1992 - Several hundred-thousand abortion rights demonstrators march in Washington, D.C.
- 1993 - The Child Support Act 1991 , administered by the Child Support Agency, comes into effect in the United Kingdom.
- 1998 - In Japan, the Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge linking Shikoku with Honshu and costing about US$3.8 billion, opens to traffic, becoming the largest suspension bridge in the world.
- 1999 - Two Libyans suspected of bringing down Pan Am flight 103 in 1988 are handed over for eventual trial in the Netherlands.
- 1999 - In Laramie, Wyoming, Russell Henderson pleads guilty to kidnapping and felony murder in order to avoid a possible death penalty conviction for the hate crime killing of Matthew Shepard.
- 1472 - Bianca Maria Sforza, daughter of Duke Galeazzo Maria Sforza of Milan and wife of Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor (d. 1510)
- 1479 - Guru Amar Das, third Sikh Guru (d. 1574)
- 1588 - Thomas Hobbes, English philosopher (d. 1679)
- 1692 - Adrienne Lecouvreur, French actress (d. 1730)
- 1784 - Louis Spohr, German violinist and composer (d. 1859)
- 1816 - Samuel Freeman Miller, U.S. Supreme Court justice (d. 1890)
- 1827 - Joseph Lister English surgeon (d. 1912)
- 1837 - Algernon Charles Swinburne, English poet (d. 1909)
- 1856 - Booker T. Washington, American Educator (d. 1915)
- 1871 - Mirko Seljan, Croatian explorer
- 1875 - Mistinguett, French vaudeville performer (d. 1956)
- 1900 - Spencer Tracy, American actor (d. 1967)
- 1901 - Melvyn Douglas, American actor (d. 1981)
- 1905 - Bill Raisch , American actor (d. 1984)
- 1908 - Bette Davis, American actress (d. 1989)
- 1908 - Herbert von Karajan, Austrian conductor (d. 1989)
- 1909 - Albert R. Broccoli, American film producer (d. 1996)
- 1911 - Jussi Björling, Swedish tenor (d. 1960)
- 1912 - John Le Mesurier, British actor (d. 1983)
- 1916 - Gregory Peck, American actor (d. 2003)
- 1917 - Robert Bloch, American author (d. 1994)
- 1920 - Arthur Hailey, American writer (d. 2004)
- 1922 - Gale Storm, American singer and actress
- 1922 - Christopher Hewett, British actor (d. 2001)
- 1923 - Nguyen Van Thieu, South Vietnamese president (d. 2001)
- 1923 - Michael Gazzo, American actor (d. 1995)
- 1926 - Roger Corman, American film director, producer, writer
- 1929 - Nigel Hawthorne, British actor (d. 2001)
- 1931 - Boris Strugatsky, Russian author (d. 1991)
- 1933 - Larry Felser, American sports columnist and writer
- 1934 - Frank Gorshin, American actor
- 1934 - Roman Herzog, German politician
- 1937 - Colin Powell, U.S. Secretary of State
- 1941 - Michael Moriarty, American actor, political activist
- 1942 - Peter Greenaway, Welsh film director
- 1943 - Max Gail , American actor
- 1946 - Jane Asher, British actress, writer
- 1947 - Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, 14th president of the Philippines
- 1949 - Judith Resnik, astronaut (d. 1986)
- 1950 - Agnetha Fältskog, Swedish singer ABBA
- 1965 - Mike McCready, American musician (Pearl Jam)
- 1973 - Pharrell Williams, American musician and producer (The Neptunes)
- 1978 - Stephen Jackson, American basketball player
- 1168 - Robert de Beaumont, 2nd Earl of Leicester (b. 1104)
- 1419 - Saint Vincent Ferrer (b. 1350)
- 1617 - Alonso Lobo, Spanish composer
- 1697 - King Charles XI of Sweden (b. 1655)
- 1964 - General Douglas MacArthur, U.S. Army (b. 1880)
- 1967 - Hermann Joseph Muller, American geneticist (b. 1890)
- 1969 - Rómulo Gallegos, Venezuelan writer and President (b. 1884)
- 1970 - Alfred Henry Sturtevant, American geneticist (b. 1891)
- 1972 - Brian Donlevy, American actor
- 1975 - Chiang Kai-shek, Chinese Kuomintang leader (b. 1887)
- 1976 - Howard Hughes, American aviation pioneer, film director, eccentric (b. 1905)
- 1982 - Abe Fortas, U.S. Supreme Court associate justice (b. 1910)
- 1983 - Danny Rapp, American musician (Danny & the Juniors)
- 1988 - Jacob Grant , King of The Cardboard Box
- 1991 - John Tower, Senator from Texas (b. 1925)
- 1991 - Sonny Carter, astronaut (b. 1947)
- 1991 - Davis Love, Sr. , golfer
- 1992 - Molly Picon, French actress
- 1992 - Sam Walton, American retailer
- 1994 - Kurt Cobain, American rock musician (b. 1967)
- 1997 - Allen Ginsberg, American poet (b. 1926)
- 1998 - Cozy Powell, British musician
- 2000 - Lee Petty, NASCAR race driver (b. 1914)
- 2001 - Brother Theodore, German-American comedian
- 2002 - Layne Staley, American rock musician (Alice in Chains) (b. 1967)
- 2005 - Saul Bellow, Canadian novelist, winner of the Nobel Prize for literature (b. 1915)
- 2005 - Dale Messick, American comic strip artist (b. 1906)
- 2005 - Debralee Scott, American actress
Holidays and observances
April 4 - April 6 - March 5 - May 5 -- listing of all days
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