This Day In History : January 19

2006 United States

New Horizons Probe Launched by NASA

On January 19, 2006, NASA launched the New Horizons probe on the first mission to Pluto. The spacecraft's historic journey aimed to explore the distant dwarf planet and the Kuiper Belt, providing unprecedented insights into these distant regions of our solar system.

Also on This Day in History January 19

Discover what happened on January 19 with HISTORY's summaries of major events, anniversaries,
famous births and notable deaths.

Births on This Day, January 19
  • 1912 Leonid Vitalyevich Kantorovich

    Russian Soviet economist (Father of linear programming), Nobel Prize for Economics 1975

  • 1837 William Williams Keen

    American physician who was 1st American brain surgeon

  • 1813 Henry Bessemer

    English inventor (Bessemer converter - revolutionized steel making)

  • 1736 James Watt

    Scottish inventor, mechanical engineer and chemist (steam engine)

  • 1747 Johann Elert Bode

    German astronomer (Titius–Bode Law)

Deaths on This Day, January 19
  • 1990 Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh

    Indian mystic, guru, educator, leader of the Rajneesh movement

  • 1930 Frank Plumpton Ramsey

    British mathematician and philosopher

  • 1876 George Julius Poulett Scrope

    English geologist, political economist

  • 1954 Theodor Kaluza

    German mathematician and physicist (Kaluza-Klein theory)

  • 1976 Hidetsugu Yagi

    Japanese electrical engineer


Apple Lisa Introduced

On January 19, 1983, Apple Inc. announced the Apple Lisa, the first commercial personal computer to feature a graphical user interface (GUI) and a computer mouse. This innovative device set the stage for future developments in personal computing technology.

First IBM PC Computer Virus Released

On January 19, 1986, the first IBM PC computer virus, a boot sector virus named (c)Brain, was released into the wild. Created by two Pakistani brothers, Basit and Amjad Farooq Alvi, the virus marked the beginning of a new era in cybersecurity challenges.

First Electric Lighting System with Overhead Wires Begins Service

In 1883, the first electric lighting system employing overhead wires, built by Thomas Edison, began service in Roselle, New Jersey. This innovative system marked a significant advancement in the distribution of electric power.

Historic Snowfall in Miami

On January 19, 1977, Miami, Florida, experienced its only recorded snowfall. Part of a broader cold wave, temperatures dropped to 30°F (-1°C), allowing light snow flurries to fall. Though the snow did not accumulate, it astonished residents unaccustomed to such weather. The event, widely documented and celebrated, remains a unique and memorable part of Miami's history.
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