Today in History, May 18

By AAP and agencies
2017 - A man slams his car into pedestrians in Times Square, killing one and injuring 22 others

Highlights in history on this date:

1642 - Canadian city of Montreal is founded.

1781 - Peruvian revolutionary Tupac Amaru II is executed by the Spanish in the main plaza in Cusco.

1803 - Britain declares war on France after Napoleon Bonaparte continues his interference in Italy and Switzerland.

1804 - Napoleon Bonaparte is proclaimed Emperor of France.

1815 - Treaty of Peace is concluded by Prussia, Russia and Austria with King of Saxony.

1830 - Edwin Budding of England signs an agreement for manufacture of his invention, the lawn mower.

1860 - Abraham Lincoln is nominated for US president.

1897 - Public reading of Bram Stoker's new novel, Dracula, or, The Un-dead, staged in London.

1899 - International peace conference is convened at the Hague in the Netherlands.

1919 - Harry Hawker and K Mackenzie-Grieve unsuccessfully attempt first nonstop direct west-east crossing of the Atlantic in their Sopwith Atlantic single-engine biplane.

1951 - United Nations moves headquarters to New York City.

1953 - Jacqueline Cochran becomes the first woman to break the sound barrier when she pilots a North American F-86 Canadair over Rogers Dry Lake, California.

1954 - European Convention of Human Rights goes into effect.

1967 - United Nations agrees to Egyptian demand to withdraw UN forces from Gaza Strip.

1969 - US astronauts Eugene A Cernan, Thomas P Stafford and John W Young blast off aboard Apollo 10.

1970 - Communist forces thrust to within 40km of Cambodia's capital of Phnom Penh.

1974 - India explodes a nuclear bomb in the deserts of Rajasthan state in its first use of an atomic weapon; Australia's Labor government of Gough Whitlam is returned to office after a federal election, but without control of the Senate.

1977 - The US, the Soviet Union and 29 other nations sign UN pact banning artificial use of the weather as a weapon of war, pledging never to attack each other by triggering storms, earthquakes or tidal waves.

1980 - Mount St Helens volcano in Washington state explodes, leaving 57 people dead.

1988 - Cheering crowds greet first group of about 1,300 Soviet soldiers to cross the border in withdrawal from Afghanistan.

1990 - The two Germanys sign a monetary union treaty, the first step on the road to unification.

1992 - The UN High Commissioner for Refugees says the civil war in Yugoslavia has pushed over 1.3 million people from their homes and created Europe's worst refugee crisis since World War II.

1993 - Violent riots break out in Copenhagen, Denmark, after a majority approve the Maastricht treaty calling for a closer European Union.

1994 - Military observers returning to the Rwandan countryside report ethnic killings of at least 200,000.

1995 - Ballet dancer Alexander Godunov, whose defection from the Soviet Union catapulted him into a successful acting career, dies at age 45.

1996 - Romano Prodi is sworn in as prime minister to head Italy's 55th government since World War Two.

1998 - The US government files a sweeping antitrust case against Microsoft Corp.

1999 - Sierra Leone's government and the country's rebels agree to a ceasefire to end seven years of savage fighting.

2005 - US actor Frank Gorshin, best known for his role as the Riddler on the 1960s TV series Batman, dies aged 72.

2011 - The northern NSW town of Armidale becomes the first mainland Australian site to be connected to the $36 billion national broadband network, with Prime Minister Julia Gillard flicking on the switch.

2013 - Jewellery worth $US1.3 million due to be loaned to stars at the Cannes Film festival is stolen.

2015 - Australian-born former tennis champion Bob Hewitt is sentenced to six years' jail in South Africa for raping and assaulting young girls he coached in the 1980s and 1990s.

2017 - A US Navy veteran slams his car into pedestrians in New York City's Times Square, killing one and injuring 22 others.

Today's Birthdays:

Nicholas II, last tsar of Russia (1868-1918); Bertrand Russell, English philosopher (1872-1970); Walter Gropius, German architect and director of Bauhaus (1883-1969); Frank Capra, US movie director (1897-1991); Perry Como, US singer (1912-2001); Dame Margot Fonteyn, English ballerina (1919-1991); John Paul II (Karol Wojtyla), Polish pope (1920-2005); Bill Macy, US actor (1922-); Pernell Roberts, US actor (1928-2010); Robert Morse, US actor (1931-2010); Dwayne Hickman, US actor-TV executive (1934-); Lobby Loyde, Australian singer and guitarist (1941-2007); Rick Wakeman, US singer (1949-); Chow Yun-Fat, Hong Kong actor (1955-); Yannick Noah, French tennis player (1960-); Tina Fey, American writer/actress (1970-); Special Ed, US rapper (1974-); Jessica Watson, Australian solo sailor (1993-).

Thought For Today:

Even if you are on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there - Will Rogers, US humorist, actor, and writer (1879-1935).