On April 8, 1513, explorer Juan Ponce de Leon and his expedition began exploring the Florida coastline.
In 1864, the United States Senate passed, 38-6, the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution abolishing slavery. (The House of Representatives passed it in January 1865; the amendment was ratified and adopted in December 1865.)
In 1911, an explosion at the Banner Coal Mine in Littleton, Alabama, claimed the lives of 128 men, most of them convicts loaned out from prisons.
In 1913, the 17th Amendment to the Constitution, providing for popular election of U.S. senators (as opposed to appointment by state legislatures), was ratified. President Woodrow Wilson became the first chief executive since John Adams to address Congress in person as he asked lawmakers to enact tariff reform.
In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered a freeze on wages and prices to combat inflation.
In 1952, President Harry S. Truman seized the American steel industry to avert a nationwide strike. (The Supreme Court later ruled that Truman had overstepped his authority, opening the way for a seven-week strike by steelworkers.)
In 1973, artist Pablo Picasso died in Mougins (MOO’-zhun), France, at age 91.
In 1974, Hank Aaron of the Atlanta Braves hit his 715th career home run in a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, breaking Babe Ruth’s record.
In 1990, Ryan White, the teenage AIDS patient whose battle for acceptance had gained national attention, died in Indianapolis at age 18.
In 1992, tennis great Arthur Ashe announced at a New York news conference that he had AIDS (Ashe died the following February of AIDS-related pneumonia at age 49).
In 1993, singer Marian Anderson died in Portland, Oregon, at age 96.
In 2010, President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed the New START treaty in Prague.
In 2020, a 76-day lockdown was lifted in the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the global pandemic began; residents would have to use a smartphone app showing that they had not been in recent contact with anyone confirmed to have the virus. Sen. Bernie Sanders ended his presidential bid, making Joe Biden the presumptive Democratic nominee to challenge President Donald Trump.